It’s the final countdown to Christmas and as usual my girls and I have been busy creating a whole array of edible gifts. We’ve made pretty bottles of sloe syrup (with sloes we picked and froze back in the autumn), candied orange slices and all kinds of chocolates and truffles.
We actually made these dinky marzipan piggies as presents for family and friends last year, and they were a huge hit. They are of course inspired by the classic pigs in blankets, one of the best bits of the traditional British Christmas dinner, where little chipolatas are wrapped in bacon and roast around the turkey.
I’m off work this week to spend the half-term school holidays at home with the kids and – what a surprise – the weather is truly miserable. So yes, we’re resorting to our favourite rainy day activity: baking. We’ve been having fun experimenting with edible decorations from Dr Oetker and have come up with three tasty bakes you might like to try out with your gang the next time rainy day boredom sets in. Continue reading “Autumn half-term baking with kids”→
As my children grow older, so we grow more adventurous in the kitchen. From pizzas and pasta to carrot cake and chilli con carne, my kids are taking on more and more ambitious projects in the kitchen. But one thing we come back to time and time again, is this easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy recipe for good old iced butter biscuits. Continue reading “Baking with kids: iced butter biscuits”→
I don’t know a single child who would turn down a slice of banana bread and my daughters are no exception. And for us parents, giving our little ones a slice of homemade banana bread when they get home from school feels just so, well, wholesome.
This is a lovely take on the standard banana bread; the addition of apricots keeps it extra moist, while the chunks of chocolate are a gooey treat. My recipe is loosely based on one I found for banana loaf in Baking with Kids by Linda Collister. It is indeed a great cake to bake with your children, who will no doubt enjoy mashing the banana, beating the eggs and licking the bowl at the end.
Banana, apricot and chocolate bread
250g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
75g demerara sugar
75g caster sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3 ripe bananas, mashed with a fork
75g plain chocolate, chopped
100g dried apricot, chopped
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.
Grease a 900g loaf tin with a little butter and line with greaseproof paper.
Gently melt the butter over a low heat and set to one side to cool slightly.
Sieve the flour, baking powder and salt into a mixing bowl, add the sugars and combine. Make a well in the middle.
Pour the melted butter and eggs into the well, and add the mashed banana, chocolate and apricot. Mix everything together thoroughly.
Spoon the mixture into your prepared tin and bake for 50 to 55 minutes. When it’s ready, the top should be a lovely golden brown and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
Allow the banana bread to cool completely on a wire rack before removing from the tin and peeling off the paper.