Baking With Kids

My mom had the day off from work on Thursday so she came into town with my beautiful niece, Madi. We had such a fun day playing games and riding the rides at Chuck-E-Cheese and going to the craft store. Last year my grandmother got Madi a kitchen set for Christmas and ever since then she can’t get enough of “cooking”. My parents got her a grill set for their house and she got a cupcake set for her 3rd birthday and she LOVES playing with them. My brother told me she wanted to bake Christmas cookies this year so that’s what we did, and that’s my home tip for the week- involve kids in your holiday baking! You’ll be shocked how much they can do and we really did have so much fun!

I set aside one disk of sugar cookie dough from when I made my cut outs so we would have some already done when she got here. Set them up at a table… Lay a big piece of parchment in front of them, give them a canister of flour, a lined baking sheet, cookie cutters and a rolling pin. I told Madi to sprinkle some flour on the parchment, put the cookie dough down and sprinkle a little more flour. I think this was her favorite part… she’d sprinkle a little flour then ask me “a little more?”, she was cracking herself up! Then I told her to roll out the dough. I was worried our heavy duty rolling pin would be too much for her but she handled it like a champ. Just keep flipping the dough over as you go because obviously they don’t have a concept of rolling it out to an even thickness so by flipping it you’ll help with that. Once it was thin enough I let her pick out which cutters she wanted to do and she cut them out all by herself and put them on the baking sheet. Bake just like the cut outs I made before (400 degrees for about 7 minutes) and let cool.

While the cookies were in the oven I had Madi make the icing. We used the egg white recipe for royal icing so I had her crack the egg and then give it to me to separate. I let her squeeze the lemon to get the juice and add the confectioner’s sugar.

Then I scooted a chair over to the mixer and let her “help” me with the speeds. I didn’t want her hand by the mixer on her own so I’d put mine on the speed lever and then let her put hers on top of mine and we’d change the speeds together, she loved that. Once the cookies were cool, I put the wire rack flat on top of a kitchen towel where the parchment paper was and put the icing in a bowl. I started her off icing the cookies with a small cheese knife but she was having a little trouble so I gave her a spoon and that worked much better. She thought putting the sprinkles in the cookies was the funniest thing ever… it was too cute! Once all the cookies were done I stuck them in the freezer to set up.

Once the cookies were dry I put all of her cookies in a clear cellophane bag and tied it with a ribbon for her to take home.