Pitta bread pizzas!

One thing which my kids love doing is helping to cook their own meals! I am always on the lookout for simple, quick food ideas which the kids can get involved with. One of our favourite things is Pitta Bread Pizzas! These are so ridiculously simple that even young kids can do the majority themselves, and they actually taste really, really good!

All you need is – pitta breads, tomato puree, cheese (and other things for toppings – we used ham and tomatoes).

Begin by spreading out the tomato puree onto the pitta bread. Make sure the bread is covered or it will burn). Then cover with grated cheese. It is completely up to you how much prep beforehand that you let your kids do. My daughter is now at an age where she loves and is quite capable of grating, chopping foods etc. It really builds kids confidence to allow them that little bit of independence, and will develop their cooking skills greatly.

IMG_2473.JPG

IMG_2474.JPG

Next choose which toppings you would like. We used a mix of ham, cheese and tomatoes!

IMG_2475.JPG

Next pop them in the oven for approximately 15 minutes or until the cheese has melted. They are super yummy served with fresh salad!

(Now you must forgive me at this point as I completely forgot to take photos of the finished pizzas – I’m so sorry! We were in too much of a rush to eat them)! Please trust me when I say they looked and tasted delicious!

A really quick, easy meal to make with the kids. The confidence the kids get from helping to make their own (and Mum and Dads!) food is brilliant!

I hope you all have a wonderful Sunday!

Advertisements

Simple chocolate chip cookies!

I love cooking and baking with my kids! As a child my Gran would often bake with us and I have learnt many recipes from watching and helping Gran in the kitchen. What she probably didn’t realise at the time is that those endless cooking experiences have turned into some of my most favourite childhood memories.

cook kids

I often look after my two year old nephew whilst my sister works and I am delighted that he seems to enjoy baking as much as I did when I was little. We decided to make some simple chocolate chip cookies the other day!

Chocolate chip cookie recipe – 110g butter, 175g plain flour, 165g chocolate chips, 55g sugar, 2 tablespoons of water, and few drops of vanilla extract.

1- Begin by preheating the oven to 160c.

2 – Add butter and sugar to a large bowl and mix well. Next add the vanilla and water, then stir in the chocolate chips and flour. Mix until you have a dough. (We tend to knead to form our dough – we do love messy hands)!

3 – Roll out your biscuit dough then use cutters to cut out your cookies. My nephew chose to make circle shaped and gingerbread men shaped cookies!

IMG_2054.JPG

IMG_2056.JPG

 

4 – Once you have cut out your cookie shapes lay them onto a baking tray covered with grease proof paper.

IMG_2059.JPG

 

5 – Bake for approx 20 minutes or until golden brown! We like to sprinkle some caster sugar over them once cooked.

IMG_2063.JPG

They tasted so good and certainly got a big thumbs up from my nephew!

IMG_2069.JPG

 

Yummy, simple chocolate chip cookies to bake as a delicious treat! Enjoy!

 

 

Sweetie Cupcakes!

The one good thing about all this rain we are having here in Wales is that it gives me lots of time to bake with the kids! I love cooking and baking with the kids as it teaches them some very useful skills (as well as the actual cooking techniques) which they will need in later life including responsibility, confidence, reading and spelling, following instructions, and risk. It is amazing how much a little cooking activity can help kids when you really sit and think about what the activity is teaching them.

cook quot

As I had my niece and nephew with me too the other day I thought it would be a cute idea to make Sweetie Cupcakes with them all!

To make your Sweetie cupcakes you will need – For the cakes: 170g self raising flour, 170g butter, 170g sugar and 3 eggs. For the topping: 250g butter, 600g icing sugar and 2 tbs milk. To decorate: sweets of your choice (we used Smarties).

1 – Begin by preheating the oven to 180c and lining a cupcake tin with cake cases.

2 – Put the butter and sugar in a bowl and mix until fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time and mix together.

3 – Add the flour and mix well. Spoon the mixture into the cake cases and bake for approx fifteen minutes or until golden.

IMG_0638.JPG

4 – Allow the cakes to cool thoroughly. Now make your butter cream which will decorate the top of the cakes. Make the butter cream by putting the butter and sugar into a large bowl and mixing. Then add the milk and stir it in. Spread the butter cream over the cakes then decorate with sweeties! We used Smarties to add a splash of colour! The kids also decided to add some sprinkles and hundreds and thousands!

IMG_0640

 

IMG_0646.JPG

IMG_0647.JPG

Our cakes looked lovely and tasted really good! The kids loved them and they disappeared super fast! Hubby wasn’t impressed that by the time he returned home from work they had all been eaten! (Mental note to make more next time)!

Hope you are all having a perfect Sunday!

My Daughters Sticky Jam Cake!

My daughter loves baking and as she gets older she is starting to tweak and adapt recipes so that they suit her own personal tastes. I love that she has her own ideas when baking and that she doesn’t feel she has to strictly follow recipes.

She decided to make her own recipe for jam cake the other day and I thought I would share it with you all (with her permission of course)! Be warned – this is a pretty sticky cake! She has a sweet tooth like most kids!

Recipe for Sticky Jam Cake – 125g butter, 200g self raising flour, 30g icing sugar, 3/4 tsp salt, 6 eggs, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1 tbs cold water, 230g berry jam (we used strawberry), 400g granulated sugar.

1 – Preheat oven to 180c and grease a baking tin. (Ignore that my daughter is greasing two tins, she was making  a cake for a friend too)!

IMG_0149.JPG

2 – Put the butter into a mixing bowl and mix until creamy. Then add 150g of the flour, the icing sugar, water, vanilla and half teaspoon of salt. Mix until you have a ball.

3 – Put the ball into the tin and press it down to form an even layer covering the tin bottom. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.

IMG_0158.JPG

4 – Once chilled, bake for approximately 15 minutes. Then let it cool completely. Reduce the oven temperature to 170c.

5 – Once the base is cooled, spread the jam over it evenly.

IMG_0160.JPG

6 – Mix the eggs, sugar, remaining flour and the remaining salt in a bowl, until smooth.

7 – Pour the egg mixture over the base and spread it out so that it is even.

IMG_0167.JPG

8 – Put into the oven until the top is set. This usually takes about 30 minutes. Once cooked, let it cool completely, remove from tin and then serve!

My daughter served hers with strawberries to complement the jam flavour. Raspberries would also work brilliantly if you use raspberry jam.

This is a super delicious cake which is a family favourite in our home, thanks to my wonderful baking daughter! A lovely weekend treat!

Christmas biscuits!

Today we decided to spend the afternoon baking as it was so wet and windy outside (again)! I must admit a little part of me quite enjoys the winter weather, as there is nothing nicer than being cosy inside with the little ones baking or making!

We chose to bake butter biscuits as they are a huge favourite in our house. They are simple to make and taste amazing. I usually make a few batches at a time, as they seem to disappear very quickly! I was also looking after my 6 year old niece and my (very nearly!) 2 year old nephew, and the kids all decided they would like to turn the biscuits into Christmas biscuits by adding some fun decorations! So we got plenty of ingredients and set to work…… (when I say work, I mean throwing ingredients around and getting covered in flour and icing)!

cook quote

To make your Christmas biscuits you will need – 

Biscuit recipe – 110g (4 oz) softened butter, 55g (2 oz) caster sugar, 2 – 3 tbs cold water, few drops of vanilla extract and 175g (6 oz) plain flour Topping – icing sugar, water and decorations of your choice (we used sugar sprinkles, sugar balls and mini sugar gingerbread men) You will also need cookie cutters in ‘Christmas’ themed shapes!

IMG_3239.JPG

Begin by preheating your oven to 160C. Then put your butter and sugar into a bowl and mix until fluffy.

Add your vanilla extract and water and mix. Slowly add your flour, mixing it in well. (We tend to use our hands at this point to form a ball, ready to roll out – I split it into two balls here to share between the kids).IMG_3249.JPGRoll your biscuit dough out onto a floured surface. We always pop some flour onto the rolling pin too, to stop it from sticking.IMG_3251.JPGThen use your cookie cutters to cut out some Christmassy shapes! Place them onto greaseproof paper on a baking tray.

Bake them in the oven for approx 15 minutes or until golden brown. Leave to cool and sprinkle with some caster sugar.

Now you can make some icing with your icing sugar and add whatever decorations you like! We went crazy with sprinkles, sugar balls and sugar gingerbread men!

Our finished biscuits were completely yummy and went down a treat! The kids all had brilliant fun and my nephew especially enjoyed decorating his biscuits (even if it did mean sending him home covered in icing – sorry mum)! We sent some biscuits home for my sister too from my niece and nephew and she loved them!IMG_3287.JPG

These biscuits would make a lovely Christmas gift for teachers, wrapped in pretty cellophane and tied with a cute ribbon. (This was what we made for teachers last year and all of the teachers loved them. My daughter said they ate them at break time with their cups of coffee)!

Pizza fun!

Yesterday me and the kids decided to make some pizza for lunch. I prefer to make our own pizza dough usually, but I spotted a box of ready made pizza bases in my local shop the other day, which were discounted by a huge amount! I bought the bases for absolute pennies, so I thought I would give them a go! They were too big a bargain to miss!

I love making pizzas with the kids as they love having the freedom to create whatever they want on their pizzas. They can let their imaginations go wild! My daughter loves making faces on her pizza and my son likes making patterns with the different toppings. They really like the fact that they have helped prepare and make their own lunch, and tend to eat a lot better if it is something they have helped to make themselves! pizza quote blog

If you want to make your own pizza base I usually use the recipe below as it is so quick and easy.

Pizza base recipe – 375g plain flour, 1 tsp salt, 7g dried active baking yeast, 2 tbs olive oil, 1 tbs caster sugar and 225 ml warm water.

Mix flour, yeast, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Mix in oil and water. Knead into dough, then roll into your base shape. Top with your desired toppings. Bake for 20 – 25 mins at 190 c.

Once you have your base you can choose what toppings you would like. You will need a tomato purée / tomato and herb sauce and grated cheese to spread over your base to stop it burning. My son and daughter also chose tomatoes, ham and sweetcorn to add to their pizzas. I put all the different toppings into different bowls so that they are easily visible, and the kids can get into them easily. IMG_2636IMG_2640

The kids love decorating their pizzas in their own styles!IMG_2643 IMG_2644Once the pizzas were fully decorated, I baked in the oven at 190 c for about 10 minutes as we were using the ready made bases. Usually I bake for about 20 minutes when using our own home made pizza dough. IMG_2650IMG_2652

We served our pizzas with salad and garlic bread and they were yummy! No leftovers at all! I was pleasantly surprised by the ready made bases. They were super easy and tasted nice enough (not as good as our home-made ones though)!

A yummy, tasty meal which the kids loved!

Simple Jammy Muffins

We decided to make one of our family favourite bakes today – Jammy muffins! They are easy to make and are brilliant to encourage the little ones to get involved in the kitchen! The recipe and method we use are as follows –

Ingredients – 225 g plain flour, 75 g caster sugar,  2 eggs, pinch of salt, 1 tbsp baking powder, 160 ml milk, 5 tbsp melted butter and 8 tbsp jam.

Method – Preheat oven to 190 C. Add flour, sugar, salt and baking powder to a bowl and mix. In a different bowl, add the eggs, milk and melted butter and mix. Then pour the egg mixture into the other ( dry ingredient) bowl and stir. Spoon half the mixture into cake cases. Then make a well in each cake mix and add a spoon of jam. Then pour another spoon of cake mix over the top of the jam. Bake for 20 mins or until golden. 

We used strawberry jam in our muffins, but you can add whichever flavour jam you like. These are my daughters favourite thing to bake and she loves putting the jam into the cakes, then ‘hiding’ the jam again with the cake mix! A yummy family treat!

IMG_0505

IMG_0511

Gorgeous Homemade Gingerbread!

Yet another rainy (August!) day provided the perfect opportunity to do some baking with the little ones. We opted to make gingerbread as it’s pretty simple and is fantastic for the kids to knead and cut out by themselves as the dough can take a lot of handling. The recipe and method we like to use is this:

  • 7 oz plain flour
  • 3 oz butter
  • 2 oz sugar
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 tbsp golden syrup
  • 2-3 tsp ground ginger (we like to use 3 as we love ginger!)
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 desert spoon water
Preheat oven to 190 C and grease the baking trays. Heat the butter, syrup and sugar but do not let them boil! Once melted, take off the heat and add the flour and spices. Stir and add bicarbonate of soda and water into the mixture. Knead into a ball and roll out onto a floured surface. Then cut out using cutters. Bake for 5 – 8 minutes depending on the thickness of the gingerbread. 
Our gingerbread tasted yummy and the kids loved the process of making the dough and cutting out all the different shapes. They taste much nicer than shop bought gingerbread too! You could also add choc chips/raisins/icing etc to decorate the gingerbread. The kids love making funny faces and adding all sorts of weird and strange features! A yummy rainy day activity!
IMG_1615
IMG_1613 IMG_1614 IMG_1621