Monday, October 1, 2012

Parker's Plant Cell Pizza

Happy October and VeganMoFo! So not ready for blogging each and every day so I decided my "theme" (I use this term quite loosely) is cooking (or something food related) with a different member of the family each day. I'm not organized enough to say Mondays will be this member or anything and we have five people in our family so the other two days will be a "this or that" review of similar vegan food products and our take on which one is better and then a restaurant review or perhaps I'll take a day off...we shall see.

Meet the vegan playas:

Me...I'm Vegan Linda. The name started long before blogging back when my hubs and I lived in the DC area and worked as consultants for Nextel. I should come up with something catchier, but I'm now 40 with three kids living in the Midwest and I don't have the energy to be hip and cute.

Rob...the hubs. Yes, he is vegan. He was vegan before I even knew vegans existed. He just turned 50 this year and is begrudgingly a fabulous poster boy (man) for vegan living.

Parker...our straight edgy eldest. He has his own neglected blog and here is his interview from last year.

Dema...eight and pretty much has life figured out much better than I ever will. He thinks of ways to save the world on a daily basis and renews my faith in humanity and activism. His interview from last year is here.

Josie...the self-described butterfly ninja princess. She is rough and tumble with lots of bling. She is a tree-hugger though and through. She once planned to climb a tree and live in it to keep it from being cut down (she has not heard of Julia Butterfly Hill yet or she probably would have followed through with her idea). Her interview from last year is here.

Now for today's post:
Parker's homeschooling Life Science assignment recently was to make a plant or animal cell model out of food. He loved this idea and immediately got to work designing his plant cell made completely out of plants. He started with a diagram of a plant cell from the internet. He quickly decided pizza would be his canvas.
During the week he decided what his toppings would buy and how to arrange them as he learned the accurate anatomy of a plant cell. Rob is our pizza dough expert so, the night before our homeschooling group day, they put it all together.
Whole wheat pizza crust = cell wall
Pizza sauce = cytoplasm
Green peppers = Golgi apparatus
Pineapple = chloroplast
Daiya cheese =  vacuole
Tomato slice = nucleus
Black olive = nucleolus
Onion ring = smooth endoplasmic reticulum (ER)
Onion with spices = rough endoplasmic reticulum (ER)
Jalapeno peppers = mitochondrion
Carrot strips = cell (plasma) membrane
Green olive = peroxisome
Parker awoke early the next morning to cook his plant cell model before we left for our homeschooling group. It smelled really good. Who says science isn't fun and appetizing*?
All that was left after his Life Science class was crumbs, much to Josie's sorrow. So we made more pizzas, with less cellular detail, that evening for dinner and everyone was happy.

 Josie and Dema petting their worms in Life Science class.
 Josie and Dema observing the different parts of a living worm body and thinking about what type of environment they prefer (dark/light? rough/smooth? wet/dry? hot/cold?).
The younger siblings enjoyed playing with and learning about worms in their Life Science class that day. Not appetizing since worms aren't food, even for most people who aren't vegan, but loads of fun. No worms were harmed for the Life Science class. In fact, several of the kids were touching the worms by the end of the class when they just thought they were "gross" at the beginning so perhaps new worm lovers were born that day. Josie and Dema often enjoy rescuing worms after a rain or while we are digging in the garden and had entire life stories (complete with boyfriends and girlfriends in Josie's case) created for their worms by the end of the day.


Sarah said...

That's so cool! I remember my dad helped me make a cell one year and we made it out of a 2 liter soda bottle filled with plaster and fun things in different shapes and colors - a pizza cell is way cooler! :D

Sarah said...

Awesome! a memory those kids will have forever!

Anonymous said...

What a fantastic idea! I want cell pizza!

Mel said...

The cell pizza is so fantastic! What a great way to make science fun.

VeganLinda said...

It was lots of fun for the kids, but for me as well. I had forgotten a lot of the cell info and now they will forever be in my memory tied to pizza toppings.

Anonymous said...

I love this!