A Kid in the Kitchen: Matisse Stirs Up a Classic

Our kid in the kitchen charms a picky eater and offers us a few pointers.

Tomato and Mozzarella Risotto

Matisse says, "Be sure you test the rice to make sure it’s cooked—you may need a little more vegetable broth if it’s not."

Photo: Johnny Autry

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  • Matisse Reid

    Meet Matisse

    To read more of Matisse's remarkable story and cooking insights, see her blog: Matisse's Kitchen.

To put a kid-friendly recipe to the test, we contacted Matisse Reid, an 11-year-old foodie who loves tinkering around in the kitchen. This month, she tackles a risotto. Here's her report. —Phoebe Wu

“Today, I cooked Tomato and Mozzarella Risotto. I invited my friend Alex to come over. I was excited to use my new bag of Arborio rice. The recipe is pretty time-consuming, so we were a bit bored stirring the rice even though we took turns—what can I say, we’re kids! Alex is pretty picky when it comes to food (she doesn’t usually like garlic, onion, or spinach), but she liked this dish. She thought that it tasted a bit like lasagna, and it does. It was a little bit bland for my taste, so the next time I make it, I might use spicy canned tomatoes instead of regular tomatoes or chicken stock instead of vegetable stock to add more flavor. Overall, this recipe was easy to make and is a great dish to eat on its own or as a side.”


  • Alex (age 11): This score is pretty good, considering she was not impressed with some of the ingredients! 6 out of 10
  • Matisse: I’d give this an 8 or 9 with spicy tomatoes. 6 out of 10

View Recipe: Tomato and Mozzarella Risotto

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