Christmas baking with children(19 Posts)
What is everyone planning to make with children?
Last year we made snowman biscuits with decorated marshmallows on top and the obligatory gingerbread men but I’d love any more ideas.
DS is 4.
Gingerbread house. Got a silicone mould from Lakeland a few years ago. It's a tradition now, last Sunday before Xmas is gingerbread house day. Dd 2 will be joining in this year as she has just turned 2. Buy a truck load of smarties/jelly tots and let him get on with decorating ot himself, he will love it.
This weekend DD is helping with the Christmas cake.
We make mince pies, a decorate a gingerbread house, shortbread, snowman marshmallow sticks and gingerbread jumpers
Gingerbread house. Tradition now, we have the same Lakeland mould!
DD and I usually do some baking together and she gives it out as presents from her to family. We've done muffins, even more gingerbread and biscuits. We will probably do gingerbread again this year as we're not altogether on Christmas day and gingerbread keeps. Shame, I liked the Christmas muffins more. They have a jar of mincemeat in the mix.
We always do mince pies. This year there’ll be cookies and rocky road too! Though I don’t get much help, as such, just faffing, whinging and the odd stir (I don’t go fast enough for her!).
We do this gingerbread house end of November as we see it as decoration, not food:
It is a 3 day build, starting Saturday with the actual baking, then first assembly, then roof and last decoration. No way you can get it down in one day. It will be ceremonial destroyed on New Year's Day.
Otherwise we bake a stollen end of October and will do stained glass biscuits for tree decoration in December. DH will do current biscuits (no one else eats them) and DD and I will do Rudolf muffins for my work.
During the summer I baked 3 times with my 6 year old and 4 year old. We made:
- Chocolate brownies
- Butterfly cupcakes
- Chocolate chip cookies
Each recipe took a long time for me to get ready, and the boys were extremely messy so there was a lot of cleaning up to do afterwards.
At the end of the summer I asked the boys what was their favourite food they made. Their answer:
Walkers Salt and Shake crisps
They said it was much easier than the other recipes, and you got to eat the food straight away.
This Christmas I plan on just letting the children decorate the food, rather than making it ourselves.
I make cookies with DD using a roll out dough (I have a spiced dough but just got a recipe for a plain one too).
We use the small cutters that she got with play dough years ago as tiny shapes (mushroom, bird, car, Sun, moon, elephant etc) - I just gave them a very good wash before we used them for baking (and she hasn't done palydoh in years so they're in the baking cupboard for good now). I also have larger shapes of holly leaves, stars, gingerbread man, etc.
Some years we decorate them, other years not.
Tistheseason, I love that!
Luckily, my nearly four year old does like baking (although almost definitely not as much as he would like salt and shake crisps).
The to-be-2-year-old-at-Xmas is wild and fiery and almost definitely won’t be incorporated in baking plans this year, although she might be able to do some decorating of biscuits that have been baked by 4yo. We might need a two stage approach...!
Stained glass cookies are always fun for Christmas, plain or gingerbread biscuit dough cut out the shape and then cut out a smaller shape inside and put a boiled sweet or different colours of broken up sweets in the hole and bake. The sweets melt to make a lovely “window” in the biscuit. You can make a hole before you bake as well so they can be hung up.
We've made snowmen out of marshmallows for everyone in DDs class before - a massive American one as a body, regular one as face, baby hit chocolate/baking one covered in melted chocolate sitting on a chocolate button as a hat. Chocolate chips stuck on with melted choc as buttons and a liquorice shoelace or similar as a scarf, dots of melted choc (using a skewer/toothpick) to make facial features.
Labour intensive to make 30 but it was her birthday treat for them and she had designed it herself!
Different types of biscuits, each with a batch for me and a batch for DS to roll out as his will turn out like rubber when they're rolled and rolled again, but he loves baking
A few cakes, he loves cracking the eggs in a mixing it up and some mince pies I think.
I've been looking at pinterest and there's some gorgeous decorations I'd love to copy but he'll have just as much fun if I let him loose with some icing and sprinkles and things.
I'm so hungry now...
When DD was just 1, her involvement was I her apron, standing on a stool at the worktop, beating the eggs (to mix white and yolk), adding the pre-weighed ingredients from their bowls, 1 stir with a wooden spoon(stiff dough for small hands) and having her own handful of dough to roll out and cut (which did get baked on a separate tray purely for Mum and Dad to taste and praise before they disappeared, as they were very very well kneaded and rolled!).
She got better at weighing and adding and mixing and rolling and cutting over the years. By age 7, she was taking 1 basic recipe (a "slice off a log of dough" type) and making that entirely herself.
But she's still pretty bad at clearing up afterwards!
And we occasionally get out icing and sprinkles but they're far more rare than actual baking in our house
Can anyone share their recipes please? It's the first year I can bake with dd and looking for inspiration!
I've bought kits. Takes the faff out of baking with kids ;)
I have an Xmas cake kit complete with cardboard tin and board.
And just got an igloo cake set from B&I'm that comes with ingredients and bowl.
We make mince pies with ready bought pastry and a jar of mincemeat. They like to cut out the stars for the top.
Don't forget to make the mincemeat for the mince pies too! So easy to do and lovely!
Gingerbread house: I put a lunchbox inside the house to prop the pieces against so it's harder for little hands to knock over.
Chocolate jazzles: Melted white chocolate, food colouring, sprinkles and crucially a nice plastic or silicone mould makes for lovely results that even a young child can manage to do.
I know that doesn't count as baking
For cookies: Sometimes I make the dough ahead, or double the mixture and put half in the freezer. small kids may not have the attention span to measure, mix, knead, roll, bake and decorate. And it's nice to throw a few cookies in the cooling oven after a roast so they never go to waste.
With mine, I find that they take an intensive interest in some aspect of the activity (breaking eggs/ throwing handfuls of flour in the air) but rarely follow through to the end. Once I accepted this and let go of the tv version of baking with kids that I had in my head, I actually started enjoying it.
I second a previous poster's recommendation of stained glass cookies. We make these every year now and they are beautiful. Use a big cutter for the outside and a much smaller one than you'd think on the inside. Use a straw to cut a hole in the top before baking if you want to hang them. And put the boiled sweets in the freezer before bashing them to make them brittle. Google "Mary Berry stained glass " for the recipe.
Nigella's Christmas puddini bonbons are good. I used a chocolate sponge pudding instead of christmas pudding.
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