Diwali has gone by and the cool weather is arriving in Bangalore. The rains have been regular daily visitors and the boys have moved from shorts to track pants and light sweatshirts. They are a lot more excited by the smell of baking and are generally super snacky when they are at home.
Yesterday i decided to make some gingerbread cookies. I got the recipe from Martha Stewart’s site (http://www.marthastewart.com/343445/gingerbread-cookies)
Anyway, long story short..a little tedious but turned out absolutely delish! The boys woke up from their afternoon nap like puppies with their noses in the air sniffing around in the kitchen. We pulled them out, I let them cool and did a simple icing on top. Then before i knew it, the kids had taken them off the cooling rack and made off with a gingerbread man each.
Sid looked at Amu who was admiring his cookie in general and said “eat it up quickly before the gingerbread man runs away!”
Nish my ever musical boy immediately broke into the gingerbread man refrain “run run as fast as you can….”
Amu of course had us all in splits a minute later. He promptly chomped at his cookie and then held it up saying “no worries, i have eaten up his legs…now he cant run!
Cars, trucks, constructions toys and now Dinosaurs…the current thing my boys seem to be into. As we were reading about dinosaurs last month we came across a whole section on fossils and that was another thing that caught the twins’ fancy.
So, i decided to make hem fossil cookies. We played with some playdough and they loved putting their plastic bugs on it to make ‘fossils’. taking this one stwp further i googled for fossil cookie recipes and came across a really nice one by Martha Stewart:
They were pretty simple to make (the only part that really took a little time was toasting the walnuts in a pan and then putting them into a mixie to get a powder. But that walnut meal packed a lot of taste and texture into the cookies and generally made them more nutritious for the boys as well. The recipe is on the Martha Stewart site of you just click on the link.
Sounds like the perfect weekend doesn’t it? It was!
We spent saturday and sunday in lonavala with the whole family…the 5 of us, my parents, my brother and sister in law, a cousin and an aunt who were both visiting from the US.
It was my mom’s birthday and the boys had made multilpe cards for her. They helped me bake a cake too…a really simple and super delicious one (http://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2013/11/13/orange-glazed-cranberry-bread/)…well, more a bread than a cake but super deelish and i strongly recommend the recipe. I did not need to modify it all that much…only substituted almonds for the pecans.
The garden was explored and re-explored. We found jackfruits in varying stages of growth…grapefruits and spider webs on the grapefruit trees. We discovered dew, the smell of lemon flowers and the compost pit.
Sid made an interesting analogy to a garbage dump truck when he was observing the gardener sweep and collect the dry leaves and flowers before dumping them into the pit.
We did crayoning and painting and the highlight of the painting was a large compound wall that we started to paint. We have decided that it will be a collaborative family mural. So every time we go there we will add to it. This time we started out with a simple tree and all of us made palm prints for leaves…so the tree has palm prints for the smallest member Amu as well as for the oldest members (my parents and aunt). Nish added some “details” at the bottom of the tree as well.
Nish learned how to bounce the ball!!! And Amu managed to climb up a ladder when i turned away for a minute. He also discovered the big garden broom and got very busy!
The weekend was even more special because my dad received a prestigious award and so it was celebrations all around! All three boys loved the time with their family and the attention that came along with it!
We really had a wonderful time!
Here’s a recipe I found online for the most scrumptious white chocolate cranberry cookies! Like most of the recipes i pick, this one is fairly simple, straightforward, uses easily available ingredients and turns out finger licking good! seriously!
It smells super divine in the oven and i literally had the twins waiting in the kitchen and drooling as we pulled them out of the oven and let them cool on the rack. Sid could not wait long enough for it to cool completely so he grabbed himself a couple while they were still a little warm and gobbled them down so he could get two more! Nish was a little more civilized and took his in a bowl while the little one crawled all over with two cookies of his own! That, my friends, is the true test of whether something tastes good…really good. Because my very honest children will not think twice about telling me it is too sweet or not crunchy or really not nice at all!
Sadly…no pictures…just a delicious smelling kitchen and full bellies!
But here is a link to the recipe.
If you feel like baking and want something yum yet not complex…this is it! I baked 2 batches and gave a bunch to some friends as well as a christmas present! The current recipe makes slightly chewy cookies. For the boys i let it stay in 5 minutes longer and got them crunchy…for the remaining ones i stuck to the suggested baking time. You can play around with that piece based on what you like. Oh, and i am thinking that hazelnuts and white chocolate chips might be a delightful variation!
My boys have had goldfish crackers only once when my friend was visiting from New York and his daughter had brought them along to our house as a snack. The twins loved them and asked for them a few time but i never got down to buying them. Then, the other day as i was surfing the net for things that i could do with Dr. Seuss books, i came across them again as a suggested activity with the One Fish Two Fish book. Anyway, that got me thinking about the crackers and so I googled a recipe for the goldfish. Found a fairly simple one on http://tastykitchen.com/blog/2011/09/homemade-goldfish-crackers/
I decided to give it a try…i did not have any sharp cheddar at home so i used only regular Britannia natural cheddar. I also did not have a small goldfish mold and since we avoid buying soda, i had not tin cans that i could cut up to make a mold. Fortunately i found a fish in the playdough molds the kids had and made do with that…so the fish are bigger than the goldfish crackers. I followed the instructions pretty closely and had the boys help me with using the ‘cookie cutters’, as well as with the initial blending. The only thing i did differently was the amount of time i put them n for. While the recipe suggested 15 minutes i left them in for about 25 so they came out nice and crisp….and amazingly delicious. The boys took them right off the cooling rack and ate them! The loved the fact that it was shaped like a fish…and we used a toothpick to make eyes and a mouth.
Definitely going to make these again! They are almost over already. They don’t look as pretty as the actual crackers and are slightly brown since i left them in longer to get nice and crisp but they taste absolutely yum! if you prefer them chewy on the inside you can take them out sooner but my boys like the crunch!