Kid Made Recipe: Pie Crust Lattice!

 

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Have a budding chef looking for a challenge? Put that kid to work making pie! A classic lattice crust takes a little practice, but the results are worth the effort! Use your favorite pastry recipe, or just bring home a few pre-made crusts from the store to get started. Follow the steps in this video and let your kiddo wow the family with a fancy summer dessert!

 Pie Crust Lattice

Prep Time: About 20 minutes

Bake  Time: 30-45 minutes, depending on your pie recipe  

Total time: 50-65  minutes

Ingredients:

  • Pre-made frozen pie crust, thawed and rolled out to 2 12-inch circles.

 

Instructions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400
  2. Transfer one rolled-out crust to a 9 inch pie plate, letting some crust overhang all around.
  3. Press the crust gently into the bottom of the pie plate, and trim the extra from the edges, making sure you leave enough to cover the edge completely.
  4. Fill with your desired pie filling.
  5. Lay the remaining dough circle on a lightly floured surface and use a butter knife to cut into 10 fairly even strips.
  6. Lay 5 strips vertically across the pie filling. Starting with the left side, fold alternating strips back half way.
  7. Lay one strip horizontally across the center of the pie.
  8. Fold the strips back down, and fold back the alternate strips.
  9. Lay another strip horizontally across the vertical strips.
  10. Fold the strips back down, and fold back alternate strips.
  11. Repeat until all strips are used, and a crosshatch pattern has formed.
  12. Beat one egg, and use a pastry brush to coat top crust.
  13. Bake pie according to your recipe.

 

Kid Made Recipe: Refreshing Watermelon Pie!

Looking for a fun desert that captures the very best of summer? Try kid-made watermelon pie! The variations are endless and the results are delicious!

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Looking for a fun desert that captures the very best of summer? Something refreshing that the kids will love making for themselves? Try watermelon pie!

The variations are endless and the result is delicious!

Watermelon Pie

Serves 6-8

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Total time: 20 minutes

 

Ingredients:  

  • 1 Cross-section slice of a large watermelon
  • Assorted fruits, washed and cut into small pieces if necessary. We used blueberries, strawberries, and peaches.
  • A few Tbsp sliced almonds
  • A few Tbsp shredded coconut
  • A handful of mint leaves
  • About ½ cup greek yogurt

 

Instructions:

  1. Place watermelon circle flat on a cutting board and cut into triangles like a pizza.
  2. Move slices to a serving plate, arrange in a circle.
  3. Spoon yogurt in the center of the “pizza.”
  4. Garnish with sliced fruit, mint, almonds, and coconut.
  5. Grab a slice!

Recipe Notes:

Customize this refreshing pizza with whatever fruits, nuts, seeds, and sweet herbs you like! Try a drizzle of honey or a sprinkle of cinnamon too.

 

Kid Made Recipe: Delicious Green Smoothie Popsicles!

How do you get your kids to eat their veggies? Make this simple, kid-friendly recipe for surprisingly delicious kale (shhh!) and pineapple popsicles!

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How do you get your kids to eat their veggies? Make this simple, kid-friendly recipe for surprisingly delicious kale (shhh!) and pineapple popsicles!

Smoothie Popsicle

 

Makes : 8 popsicles

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Freeze Time: 2-4 hours

Total time: 2 hours 5 minutes

 

Ingredients:  

  • 2 cups frozen pineapple
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 cup kale
  • 1/2 cup water
  • squeeze of lemon

Instructions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and blend on high until smooth and no chunks remain.
  2. Pour carefully into popsicle molds.
  3. Add popsicle sticks and tap down gently.
  4. Freeze for at least 2 hours.

 

Recipe Notes:

To remove popsicles, run bottom of molds under cool, not hot, water for a few seconds until pops loosen.

 

Kid Made Recipe: Kale Pesto Pasta

New a fresh weeknight dinner idea? I suggest this bright and tasty Kale and Parsley Pesto!

Need a fresh weeknight dinner idea? I suggest this bright and tasty Kale and Parsley Pesto!

This time of year always finds me in a dinner rut. Spring has sprung, and I’m ready to move on from casseroles and comfort food. I want fresh vegetables! But up here in New England (where I live) there is still some wait time before the real summer produce hits. So what to make in between seasons that will still satisfy my craving for green stuff, AND be devoured by the kids? I think it’s this.

It has something for everyone. At heart this is good old pasta with plenty of cheese, but there’s also a good dose of kale and parsley, and the garlic brings a little excitement. You can replace the pine nuts with walnuts, or omit the nuts entirely. Spaghetti is great, but this also works with any pasta shape you like.

Bonus – with just a little bit of love, plain old peas become a side dish to get excited about. These are both quick too, so you can easily pull the whole meal off before (or after) little league, ballet, swimming, or whatever you’ve got going on this week.

If you’re like me, you’ll want some crusty bread and butter to go on the side. So good.

Kale Parsley Pesto Pasta (serves 4-6)

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb spaghetti (or other pasta shape)
  • 4 cups baby kale
  • 1/2 cup curly or flat leaf parsley, stems removed
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 2-3 garlic cloves depending on how you feel about garlic
  • 1 cup good grated parmesan cheese
  • 2/3 cup pine nuts (or sub walnuts, or omit nuts altogether, it’s up to you)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • quick squeeze of lemon juice

Instructions:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Once it starts to boil, add about a tablespoon of salt, then the pasta.
  2. While the pasta cooks, combine the rest of ingredients except oil in the bowl of a food processor
  3. Begin to blend everything on high speed, then slowly drizzle the oil in a steady stream until it’s all been added and the mixture blends completely. It should be like a smooth paste.
  4. Give it a taste and add salt and/or pepper if necessary.
  5. You should have about 1 1/2 cups pesto.
  6. When the pasta is ready, use a ladle to reserve about a 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Set aside.
  7. Drain the pasta and return to the cooking pot.
  8. Start by adding about 1/2 cup of the pesto and the reserved cooking water to the pot and toss with tongs or two forks to combine.
  9. Add more pesto a bit at a time until you get the noodle coverage you’re looking for.
  10. I usually end up adding just about a cup of pesto per pound of pasta.

Serve with extra grated parmesan for sprinkling!

Lemon Garlic Peas

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups fresh or frozen green peas
  • 1 Tbsp butter or olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • black pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Heat the oil or butter in a medium saute or sauce pan over medium heat.
  2. When the butter is melted or the oil is shimmery, add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for a minute or two until it’s very fragrant but not browning.
  3. Add the peas, lemon juice, salt and pepper and cook, stirring gently, until the peas are bright green.
  4. If you’re starting with fresh peas this will just take 2-3 minutes. If you’re starting with frozen it will take a bit longer.

Kid Made Recipe: Homemade Bread and Butter With the Kids

There’s nothing better than homemade bread, warm from the oven, with lots of butter. Turn out, it’s actually pretty easy to make it, too. Here’s how.

For me, there is just nothing better than homemade bread, warm from the oven, with lots of butter. Period.

Yet even though I could happily exist on it exclusively for the rest of my life,  it took me years to get around to making bread myself. The process always seemed so… complicated. And who the hell has all day to hang around the kitchen waiting for it to rise or whatever?

But it turns out, it’s not actually that tough to make a decent loaf of whole wheat bread. And while there is some downtime involved while your dough rises, it’s enough time to get on with other things, even leave the house if necessary.

This recipe for homemade bread is unfussy and forgiving.

The whole process takes around 5 hours from start to finish, but only about 30 minutes of that is actual hands on-work. And if you time it right you’ll be eating warm, delicious homemade bread with dinner.  If not, it makes the greatest toast ever.

Either way, everyone who eats a piece will thank you.

This is a great recipe for involving kids. Kneading is therapeutic and even though I’ve explained it to them dozens of times my kids still think the the rising process is pure magic. But you don’t even have to make it with your kids, I find process to be relaxing so I often like to do it all myself. Plus if you go the solo route you get all the glory when it’s time to eat. If you go for the butter too, do let your kids do the shaking, or just whip it up in a stand mixer or food processor.

Tips for getting tasty bread (even on your first try):

  • Use good flour. I like organic King Arthur Bread Flour, but no matter which brand you choose make sure it’s unbleached. It’s healthier and has better flavor.
  • Always preheat your oven.
  • If you’re baking in loaf pans position so the tops of the loaves are in the middle of the oven. If you’re baking a round loaf on a baking sheet, position the sheet on the center rack.
  • To tell if it’s done, tap it with your finger. If it sounds hollow, it’s ready.

Last, remove bread from pans right away to cool it, and cool any kind of loaf on a wire rack to make sure air can circulate beneath it, this will keep  your bottom crust from gettins soggy.

Basic Whole Wheat Bread  

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 Tbsp active dry yeast.
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 Tbsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil or butter, melted
  • 6-7 cups (total) whole wheat flour and  unbleached bread flour. (Feel free to use up to half whole wheat flour, but do add some unbleached white flour into the mix. Using all whole wheat can make the bread very heavy and dense.)

Preparation:

Pour the warm water into a large bowl and sprinkle the yeast over the top, then add a few drops of honey.

Let the mixture sit for a few minutes, then add 1 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour and mix well with a wooden spoon. Look for bubbles on the surface, this tells you that your yeast is nice and active.

Add the oil or butter, salt, and the rest of the honey and mix well until everything is incorporated.

Now start adding the rest of the flour, one cup at a time, at first mixing with the wooden spoon, then switching to your hands when the dough comes together in a clump. When it forms  a ball, turn it out of the bowl onto a floured surface and get ready to knead. This is the best part!

Basically you want to gather the dough up and fold  it toward you, then push it down and away with the heels of your hands. After every few kneads give the dough a quarter turn.

Keep going until it comes together completely, and starts to feel smooth and springy. My grandmother used to say you’ll know you’ve kneaded enough when your arms ache a little. I always find the ache sets in after about 5- 7 minutes of dough work.

Wash and dry your bowl, then pour a tsp or so of olive oil into it and tip the bowl to swirl it around. Put your well-kneaded dough in the bowl and turn it a few times to make sure the entire surface is oiled.

Cover the bowl with a clean, dry kitchen towel and leave in a warm place to rise until it’s doubled in size – this usually takes about 2 hours.

When you have a good rise, remove the towel and punch the dough down to deflate it. Turn it out of the bowl and give it a quick knead or two on a lightly floured surface. Then get it into baking form. Put it into an oiled 9 inch bread pan, or shape it into a rectange or circular loaf and place it on an oiled cookie sheet.

Cover again with the towel and leave to rise once more, for 45 minutes to an hour. Preheat your oven to 375 during this rise.

You’re ready to bake!

You can leave the loaf as is, or brush the top with milk (for a crispy crust), butter (for a soft, dark crust), or a beaten egg (for a dark shiny crust).

Bake for about 30 minutes or until the loaf is nice and golden brown and sounds hollow when you tap it with your finger. Remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack.

Homemade butter

If the kids are helping: fill a pint jar halfway with heavy cream. Have them shake the jar until a solid ball forms and separates from the liquid buttermilk.

This will take about 10 minutes and yes, it’s a workout. If you’re making it on your own, put the cream in a food processor or stand mixer and whip, first on low for a minute, then on high speed until the butter comes together, just like in the jar.

When you get there, put your butter in a strainer (save the buttermilk if you think you’ll use it, it will keep in the fridge for a week or two) and rinse it with cold water until the water runs clear. Gently shake off any remaining water, then transfer to a dish or small bowl. Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp of salt if you like and keep in the fridge or at room temperature.

Kid Made Recipe: Almond Pancakes with Homemade Caramel Sauce

Weekend breakfast is my favorite. And no one ever passes up pancakes at my house. Make these Almond Pancakes and Homemade Caramel Sauce with your family.

Weekend breakfast is my favorite.

Any time I can get my whole family at the table together, I’m happy, so sneaking in a sit-down breakfast really makes my day. And no one ever passes up pancakes at my house.

I try to sneak in a little extra nutrition (whole wheat flour and almond milk), but then I pour homemade caramel sauce on top, because I’m all about balance.

Add a little fruit on the side and you’ve got a breakfast that just might beat cartoons. This recipe also happens to be perfect for budding sous chefs. Plenty of measuring, mixing, egg cracking, and whisking for one or two young helpers.

It’s also fun to watch the caramel sauce ingredients come together like magic – just supervise well near the stove top. I love this recipe, and I think you will too. Everyone will be well-fueled for a full weekend day, and your house will smell amazing. Pancakes forever!

Tip- make the caramel sauce first and keep it warm so you’re ready to pour when the pancakes are done.

Almond Pancakes with Homemade Caramel Sauce2

Almond Pancakes with Homemade Caramel Sauce

Yield, about 16-20 4-inch pancakes

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup unbleached white flour
  • 2 Tbsp baking powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/3 cup almond milk
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • 4 Tbsp butter melted and slightly cooled
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla or almond extract

 

Instructions:

Whisk the flours, sugar, salt, and baking powder together in a large mixing bowl. In a smaller bowl, whisk the eggs, almond milk, butter, and extract together. Slowly add the to dry ingredients and mix until just combined. It’s ok if the batter is a little lumpy.

Heat your griddle to medium high. This is important! The skillet should be hot, but not too hot. Test for readiness by shaking a few drops of water onto it. If they sizzle and evaporate right away, you’re good to go.

Brush the hot griddle with butter and, using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, pour out the batter. I usually try for 4 pancakes at a time. These will cook quickly, they need less than a minute per side. When bubbles appear and pop on the surface of the pancake, it’s time to flip. Let them cook briefly on the other side – You can check for doneness by lifting one edge gently with your spatula. If the bottom is golden brown, you’re good.

Transfer them to a plate as they come off the griddle and serve immediately with caramel sauce and sliced fruit on the side.

Caramel sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 6 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup milk (2% or whole)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

 

Instructions:

Combine all ingredients except vanilla in a medium, heavy bottomed sauce pan over low heat. Whisk together gently, until the butter is melted and the sugars are dissolved. Then bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly. Let the mixture boil gently for about 5 minutes, stirring a few times. Remove the sauce from the heat and let cool for a few minutes. Add the vanilla and stir well. Drizzle over pancakes while still warm!

Store the sauce in a clean jar in the fridge for up to two weeks. It will thicken up when cold, so let it come to room temp or warm it slightly by placing the jar in a bowl of warm water briefly before serving again.

What’s your favorite weekend breakfast? Do your kids help or do you make it yourself?