There seem to be many cute family-friendly Hanukkah celebrations around the city, but in my somewhat lazy research I haven’t come across any that sound particularly small-toddler-friendly. So, for the want of something festive-feeling, I decided we should bake and decorate some holiday cookies.
This is no passed-down family tradition. I don’t recall my mother ever baking cookies, or encouraging something so unhealthful as bright-blue icing. But it seems like something people do, doesn’t it?
So last night I made sugar cookies with a recipe from this cookbook I recently obtained and very much like, Real Food for Healthy Kids. I ordered it in a fit of chicken-nugget-induced guilt, after considering one of those sneak-pureed-vegetables-into-everything-your-kids-eat cookbooks.
The recipes are easy and practical and kid-friendly without being condescending, though I do think there should be a federal regulation that every cookbook include photos of finished products so you kind of know what you’re aiming for. I especially like that this book is very specific about where in the oven baked goods and such should go, the kind of details I usually only notice missing when something’s going wrong and I can’t figure out why. The cookies are made with whole-wheat flour, which assuages some of my junk-food-guilt, although I have to admit they turned out a bit dry. I also have to admit I used the whole-wheat flour I already had and not the brand the cookbook insisted on, so this is probably my own fault. Come to think of it, the cookbook authors probably would be none-too-pleased with the toxically blue icing either. Shhhhh.
Harper was very pleased to be “painting cookies,” although it took some convincing to keep her from taking a bite out of each one. She was especially pleased by the concept of sprinkles.
Now, this is probably perfectly obvious to everyone else in the world, but I realized halfway through this very messy artistic exploration that we probably would have been better off with larger edible ornaments and dragees and that kind of thing that Harper could place on the icing. Oh well. She loved ordering me to draw icing cats and dogs and then dumping sprinkles on them.
The results are, I think, a lovely and, ah, homespun interfaith display. I think the whole apartment might maintain a faintly sticky grit of sprinkles until the end of time, but oh well. We were entertained for thirty minutes or so, and we never even had to bundle up and go outside.