Tag Archive: kids. cooking

Another Wooden Spoon passes on

Yesterday, was once again, birthday celebration day for a great grand.

Grandson, his fiancee, Karlie, two great-grands, Parker and Sarah, and Karlie’s 9 year old brother, Draven, arrived early, laden with baking supplies and entusiasm.

As the greats, went through the litany of “wash your hands and get your aprons on”, adults made sure the necessary supplies were in place.

The bowl for the big stand mixer is set on the table, box of eggs, the cooking oil, and necessary measuring cups. Then I get to sit down, with my kitchen queen crown on and obsere, with few reminders. Seven, eight and our novice nine year old, measured, premixed and prepared the first cake batter.

Karlie, put it on the mixer for the final beating. While this was happening, the youngsters prepared pans, one 9X13 and both large and mini cupcakes. Each one had a pan, Parker was happy to assist his uncle Draven in learning the proper methods.

Cup cake pans are set aside for the moment as Karlie fills the big pan. Each one chooses a food color and a few drops go on the batter, given a toothpick, each swirls thier color through the cake. “Voila,” says Sarah, “it’s ready to bake!”

One cake in the oven, it’s time to do cupcakes. We use the same method, but this time the bowl comes back to the table with measuring scoops for cupcakes and some swift math. For fairness sake, each cook fills 4 large and 8 small cupcakes. then of course, the question of who gets the beaters and who gets the bowl. (So you don’t have to wonder, Sarah chose the bowl. “Ladies first”, Draven remineded)

There’s a little batter left, it goes in a 6 inch pan. Kids are herded outside in the sunshine while cakes bake and cool

Back in the house, once agian with clean hands Frosting is divided inot bowls,, kids pick colors and work those in, soon each has 3 large and 5 small cakes to decorate, oh, yes, colored sugar and sprinkles are available. THe reason they do not get them all to ice, some people here do not like frosting and some are diabetic and do not need it.

Draven cose green, “That’s my favorite color”, and Parker said it was his too. Sarah has a dark puplish black, and Parker has red.

At this point, (Breaks my heart in a way) Draven asks ” Gramma, do you think sometime we could make a cake like this for me?” It’s not that he has not had birthday cakes, not at all! this is just different.

Cupcakes are finished and plated. Karlie and Randy allow kids to frost the big cake white, then take up the decorating details.

Before long there is a PokEBall cake on the table.

There is one little lonely cake left, there is a nine year old who really wants a ‘birthday’ cake. The last of the white icing goes on, Draven’s name in the center, some red and green dots and ribbons and an incredibly big smile!

Randy puts candles on Parker and Draven’s cakes and even one in a cupcake for Sarah, We sing, they blow out the flames.

And Karlie, who is a first rate kitchen helper, gets the highly coveted wooden spoon award.


Two of the great grand kids were present to assist in making our cranberry relish this year.

Cranking that old hand grinder gets to be a hard job when you are 2 and 3, but it part of the tradition is the young ones do it, with a bit of help and enthusiasm from the older ones.

Then the youngest girl felt it necessary to share her favorite book with Miss Lily before taking a nap.

It was a fine day, yews, a very fine day!



More signs of Christmas

thank god for kids When the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays drew near, you could always tell. My two oldest and a pack of neighbor kids would arrive on the evening school bus. Why? To bake! And bake we did! Up to 14 kidsat a time, from kindergarten age through high school would converge here and crowd into the kitchen, Some pulling bags of ingredients from their bookbags. Hands washed, recipes ready, bowls out and oven on, away we would go. Sometimes an extra mom would show up as well, but it didn’t matter.

Measuring cups taught fractions, recipes honed reading skills… Jobs were assigned by ability, everyone had one and when it was time to cut or drop it was turn and turn…waarm cookies from the oven with milk or hot chocolate finished our afternoon as bags of cookies went home with each child.

The baking tradition did not end, as the older two grew up. Some years later moved to New Hampshire and youngest daughter and a pack of friends would also gather in my kitchen to bake. There we also made ‘extras’ to deliver with Christmas carols to the small apartment complex across our street for the elderly residents.

This time of year, I usually hear from someone in those groups wanting recipes, these are the most requested. And they are not forgotten in my kitchen, the grand kids join me as we bake happy memories and holiday treats.

Spicy griddle cookies (no need for the oven)

3 1/2 cups sifted all purpose flour

1 cup sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp pumpkin or apple pie spice

1 cup shortening

1 egg

1/2 cup milk

stir dry ingredients together in bowl, cut in shortening til mixture is mealy. Beat egg and milk together, add to flour and mix until well blended.

Roll out 1/4 in thin and cut into desired shapes.

Heat griddle until water drops ‘dance’ on it. Lightly greas griddle, place cut outs on it leaving space between cookies

Flip when tops become ‘puffy’. makes around 4 dozen 2 inch cookies

Best served warm, these were made while others baked and were the usual, ‘sample’ cooky we served up.

Painted sugar cookies (As a Child, my greatgrandmother, grandmother, mom and dad and the 5 of us kids made these every year, as well as them becoming a staple in the annual ‘kid baking’. I still make them.)

1 1/4 cups soft butter

2 cups sugar

2 eggs

5 cups all purpose flour

1 tsp salt

4 tsp baking powder

1 tsp nutmeg

1/2 cup milk

Cream butter and sugar, add eggs and beat until fluffy

stir dry ingredients together and add alternately with the milk to the creamed mixture. If dough is too sticky add up to 1/2 cup more flour

Roll out 1/4 inch thin and cut.

Place cookies on cookie sheet, decorate as you wish with sprinkles, edible confetti or cookie paint before baking.

Bake at 375 about 8 minutes Cool on racks, makes about 100 cookies.

Cookie paint

for each color 1 egg yolk, 1 tbsp water and a few drops of food coloring. mix til smooth. Using a clean artist brush paint design on cookie. It will bake up shiny and bright.