Sunday, December 9, 2012

Cookies with Kids

Long time no blog, Hopefully I will have a better month in December. I did a few projects in November but didn't take pictures of them.

I did take pictures this weekend though, so I'm finally updating!

I invited  a few people over to do some Christmas baking and crafts recently. I have a few tips for baking with kids. First of all, if you have a lot of cookie cutters, don't give them free reign - they will want to make every shape they see. I think it's a better option to still give them a selection, but no more than you're willing to use and have to clean up. Second - leave plenty of room on the edges of the pan if you're going to let a child touch the pan at all. Miss Gingerbread and Mr. Ninja both lost limbs when my nephew folded the pot holder over the edge of the pan to pull it out of the oven. Third, if your artists have requested simple, white-iced cookies so they can draw on them with food color markers, you should probably go the extra mile and stay up late to ice them rather than getting up early and only giving the cookies a few hours to dry. Yes, I knew that, but I was tired so I went to bed. And the kids enjoyed "testing" the cookies every hour to see if they were ready yet. Finally, kids are creative and make messes and their stuff generally does not come out looking like a Martha Stewart product - and that's just fine.

While we waited for the cookies to dry, we held them over with decorating Rice Krispie houses (and video games - lots of video games).

We finally deemed the cookies dry enough to decorate after lunch. But those pesky markers kept poking through the icing. We decided painting on them might be a better option so I took out the food color and paint brushes. The kids were much happier when they weren't making holes in the cookie all the time. Another lesson - don't leave the food color by the kids, they'll open every color and mix things and... it gets messy.
Here are a bunch of cookies waiting for color - along with a chubby Santa with a sack of toys.
Even though we were making Christmas cookies, the kids didn't really want to make traditional Christmas shapes - the tree, reindeer, presents... They were far more interested in ponies, dinosaurs and race cars. In fact, the most represented Christmas cutter was the holly cutter which the kids thought looked like an explosion and the Batman-style word bubble.

Happy Baking!

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