Sunday, February 7, 2010

Fun Recipes for Kids - Great for Snow Days!

The Washington DC area just experienced the 'Snowpocalypse', where Loudoun received a whopping 34.5 inches of snow.  Coming amongst the snowiest winter we've ever had, and this being our second blizzard of the year, many local school systems have used up all their snow days.  Loudoun County schools were out last Monday for a teacher workday, and Friday for a snow day, and the county made the call on Saturday that there would be no school Monday or Tuesday.  And, guess what?  There's more snow in the forecast for Tuesday night.  Oh, my!  Children and their parents are getting cabin fever, big time.  So, this post is dedicated to you!

These are a few fun recipes that I like to pull out on snow days to help keep them 'special'.  (They are all light on the cooking and ingredients and heavy on the fun.)  These are 'craft-like' recipes that will entertain kids for a while! (A couple are healthy, too.)

Heat vegtable oil in a pan - about an inch and half deep-on medium high.  Open a can of biscuits.  Have the kids use a bottle cap (like from a soda) like a cookie cutter to create holes in the middle of each donut.  Test the heat of the cooking oil with a donut 'hole'.  Pop it in the oil, it should take about 30 seconds or so to lightly brown on one side and then flip it and cook the other side, and when both sides are evenly brown remove.  Adjust the temperature of the oil as needed and keep testing until you've got it right. (Tip: Use serving spoon with holes to cook the holes, use a fork for the donuts.) Place cooked donuts and holes on a plate lined with a paper towel. 
TOPPINGS:  Let the kids add their own toppings.  Today, we had topping choices of cinnamon and suger; melted chocolate chips, icing made from powdered sugar and milk, sprinkles and chopped peanuts.  Sometimes we use icing from a can, sometimes just powdered sugar.  It's always fun. 

What could be simpler?  If you have leftover snowcone syrups on hand, just grab a bowl of snow and a spoon and add your favorite syrup!  No leftover syrups?  Use condensed frozen (thaw them first) fruit juices or punches, or even use powdered KoolAir or other drink mixes!

The simple version is taking sweetened condensed milk and mixing it with snow - presto magic!  That's a little sweet for me, so I often add regular milk to the mix, but be careful to keep the consistency ice cream-ish.  Some people recommend using flavored milk (vanilla, chocolate or strawberry).
FLAVORS: Add whatever flavors you have around - this is a great excuse to go on a search and rescue mission for less used flavorings in your spice cabinet.  Most people add vanilla.  A friend used flavored syrups in hers.  I add fresh fruit - berries are great and banana is my favorite - just blend them with a little milk and some crushed ice (snow doesn't 'blend' well).

Give the kids mini-marshmallows and toothpicks and demonstrate how to 'build' a snowflake.  After that, they will use their imaginations and make all kinds of things - houses, satellites, whatever.  The point is it is a craft and a snack!!

Give the kids large marshmallows and have them 'glue' them together using a bit of decorator icing, and then decorate faces, add 'clothes' etc with the decorator icing. Toothpicks or pretzel sticks make great arms!

Crush up graham crackers (the first time I made this, I used Teddy Grahams and I think they are the best, but usually I use regular graham crackers).  Mix with melted butter and flatten with fork into a pie (or round cake) pan to form a crust.  Sprinkle chocolate chips or chopped up chocolate bar (I like Hersheys), on top.  Then, add large marshmallows.  Bake in oven at 350 until it looks like the picture.  YUM!  Better than s'mores!

Melt baking chips - milk chocolate, peanut butter, white chocolate.  Cut up your favorite fruit - bananas, any kind of berry, or anything that 'fits your fancy'.  Let the kids dip their fruit in the melted chips.  For added fun, let them roll the fruit in sprinkles or chopped nuts. I am such a sneaky mom!  I trick my kids into eating fruit. You can also do this with large marshmallows or cookies (like store bought Oreos, chocolate chips, Nutter Butters, etc.).

Don't forget how much fun fondue can be.  No, you don't need a fancy pot.  Just melt your favorite cheese with some milk and use skewers (forks if you don't have skewers) and dip in your favorite veggies, chicken or other meat. 

Hope something in here gives your next Snow Day a new twist!!  Be sure and read the other Snow Day Activities posted a couple days ago.  It looks like you're gonna need them.... I hear that there's more snow on Tuesday.  I have heard rumors of anything from 5 to 10 inches.  Sigh.

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1 comment:

  1. These ideas are awesome Vicky! One of my friends just told me she was out of ideas of things to do with her kids. I am TOTALLY sending her this link!