Make a Holiday Cookie "Kit"
'Tis the season of cookies galore…so many, in fact, that there’s often a glut. Here’s a sweet gift that your child can create and give to extend the holiday spirit into the new year.
To make this “kit,” your child will also need to practice some core third and fourth grade measurement and writing skills. Not bad for a simple holiday craft project!
What You Need:
- Nice-looking one-quart glass jar
- 4” x 6” index card for writing your recipe
- Colorful markers for decorating
- Measuring cups
- Ingredients (see our two choices below)
What You Do:
- Whenever you cook with kids, and especially when you’re giving an edible gift, be sure to start by building good, healthy habits: help your child clean the one-quart glass jar thoroughly with hot water and soap, and dry it completely. Then prepare a clean work surface with measuring cups and spoons ready.
- Now choose one of our recipes below, or pick a family favorite of your own. Have your child start by copying the recipe onto an index card. (Parents, use your judgment here. In our digital age, you may want to do this on a computer. But if you’re looking to support your child’s handwriting development, nothing beats homemade. Furthermore, you can’t top the cuteness!)
- Help your child measure and pour each dry ingredient, starting with the largest amount first, into your decorative glass jar. You can stir up the mixture if you like, but we’re also fond of jars that show layers of ingredients! (Do note that you will not be including “wet” ingredients, such as eggs or milk. Those will be added later, when your gift recipient is ready to cook up the recipe).
- When you’re finished, place the lid on your jar, tie a nice ribbon around it, and string the recipe through the ribbon. You’ll have a delicious, and thoughtful, handmade present for a loved one to enjoy soon…or in a month or two!
Two holiday recipes we like:
Makes about 35 good-sized gingerbread men. For an added gift touch, tie on a cookie cutter!
- ½ cup butter
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup molasses
- ½ teaspoon vinegar
- 1 egg
- 3 cups flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
Preheat your oven to 375°.
In a microwave, melt the butter completely, and then quickly add in the sugar and molasses, and vinegar while the butter is hot. Stir them thoroughly—the sugar will even partly melt. When the mixture has cooled down, add the egg and mix it well. Then add all the dry ingredients from the cookie kit. You’ll end up with a smooth, thick dough. Cover it, and let it chill in the refrigerator at least 30 minutes. Then roll it out on a floured surface, and cut it into any shape you like. Bake 12-15 minutes, and then devour!
Chocolate Chip Muffins
Makes 12 big muffins or about 24 mini-muffins.
- 1 egg
- ⅓ cup oil
- ¾ cup milk
- 1-¾ cup flour
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup chocolate mini-chips
Preheat your oven to 375°
In one bowl, mix the milk, oil, and egg together until they are well combined. In another, larger bowl, mix all dry ingredients from the muffin kit. Use a spoon to push down the center into a mini-“bowl,” and then pour in all the wet ingredients. Stir until everything is combined, but don’t worry about a few lumps! It’s important not to overmix. Pour the completed batter into greased muffin tins; fill them about ⅔ full. Bake big muffins for about 20-25 minutes, and mini muffins for 10-12 minutes.