Monday, 13 September 2010

Cooking club

Eeek! Has it really been over a month since my last post? Well, I'm back; my computer is fixed (finally) and essential software is being reinstalled (slowly).

I've missed being here.

The summer holidays are fast becoming a rosy blur of home adventures and days out, camping trips and family gatherings, but I will endeavour to report on a few of these before September is out.

Today I write about an activity Daisy initiated when just the two of us were at home. By the way, she has recently started using the word activity herself, for which read I don't want to play on my own now mummy. Let's make a mess/noise/thing together.

It began after watching the Cbeebies programme I Can Cook. I am quite a fan, despite its irritating use of canned children's laughter throughout. This particular show featured how to make fresh fruit flapjacks and as it finished Daisy's let's make them now request enabled us to immediately 'switch off the television set and go and do something less boring instead', Why Don't You style.

Daisy insisted that for our activity we play the I Can Cook game whereby I was the presenter Katy and she was one of the children in the TV cooking club. So we followed the format of the show; we washed our hands with 'slippy-dippy' soap, put on aprons, sang about what we were doing, 'tickled' the ingredients and tried to remember the song at the end. Daisy even washed up afterwards because 'you have to put things away, to use another day', or something.

The recipe needed a bit of tweaking - mainly due to our slightly large loaf tin - but all in all the results were very pleasing. Not a fresh fruit flapjack at all really; more a crumble slice. But delicious nonetheless. What I really liked about it was that we made just four crumble slices and the ingredients for this modest amount were easily manageable for Daisy to mix, tip and 'tickle'. It also meant that a few days later, when Nana visited and we needed a quick pudding, Daisy stepped up and happily made another mini batch which we served warm with custard and cream - well, it was Sunday lunch.

It made me realise that when I'm baking at home with the children I rarely give each of them a little set up of their own; their own bowl, their own ingredients and so on (with the exception of homemade pizza) and I plan to experiment with this more in the future.

While I'm a big fan of the communal cooking experience - just look at these gorgeous fairy cakes we made together for Amelia's birthday, for example - individual parallel cooking at home can provide a fabulously fun cooking club atmosphere. And without that awful TV canned laughter.

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