Pizza Day by Melissa Iwai
This picture book chronicles a day in the life of a father, son, and their dog as they prepare homemade pizza, including homemade dough and tomato sauce. To make the pizza, many of the ingredients are sourced from their own garden. The book opens with the line, “Today is pizza day.” We see the mother leave for work while the boy, father, and dog go out into their garden and pick tomatoes, basil, carrots, onions, and green peppers. They then go inside and make the dough. The boy has fun kneading the dough, which is then left in the bowl to allow it to rise. They then chop the vegetables and make the sauce. While they are waiting for the dough to be ready and the sauce is simmering, the three go outside and play. It is then time to make the pizza. The dough is rolled out, then topped with the sauce, vegetables, and cheese. As the pizza is baking, the mom comes home and prepares a fresh salad to go with the pizza and the family has a picnic in the backyard, eating the pizza and salad. A lovely ending to a happy day. The back of the book includes a recipe for the dough and sauce and creating the pizza step-by-step. Most kids love making homemade pizza and get excited about it. This book is a fine representation of a happy family spending a contented day together. It is also an ideal book to inspire growing your own vegetable garden and making scrumptious food like pizza from it. Cooking together is a wonderful bonding experience for families and also teaches children an important life skill. The illustrations are colorful and appealing, showing the family’s beautiful garden and the joy of playing outdoors and creating fresh, wholesome food.