Saturday, 18 February 2017

Kids In the Kitchen #3 - Cooking Chinese - Recipe

This beauty plopped through my letterbox this morning from Lee Kum Kee. Always a delight to receive a little freebie (hence the name, AnnieThing For Food!).

So what to make for lunch? Continuing with my effort to get kids cooking, and get my Kids In The Kitchen more, a really simple recipe card along with a quality packet of Oyster Sauce, and whatever I could find in the fridge, my 10-year-old and I rustled up Braised Chicken with Spring Onions in Oyster Sauce in less than half an hour for today's lunch.

She painstakingly cut up 2 two chicken breasts with a scissors, and placed it in a bowl with the Oyster Sauce, and a dash of sesame oil. While she was doing this, I put some spaghetti on, chopped up some spring onions and carrots into long thin strips. The onion chopping caused her to reach for a clothes peg to put on her nose, to stop the tears... all good fun.
Once everything was prepped, the sunflower oil was heated in my #SchoolOfWok wok, and the onions and carrots quickly sautéed. The marinated chicken was then added and stir-fried for about 2 minutes, then 2 tablespoons of water added in and fried for a couple minutes more until the chicken was cooked.
To serve, plonk the spaghetti/noodles/rice in a bowl, top with the cooked chicken and garnish with sliced spring onions. Eat with chopsticks.
'Let's have this for lunch every day, Mummy!'

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Kids in the Kitchen #2 - Junior Bake-Off

My daughter's friend hosted a Junior Bake-Off. Four teams each had to bake and design a cake. The results were truly astonishing - for children aged 7-11, with minimal help from adults...

As I couldn't be there for the day, I wrote out the recipe for a Victoria Sponge, and filled up a bag with all the equipment she would need. She chose her own coloured fondants, glitters, and decorations and I lent her my cake tool box. 

The adults who were there helped with weighing out, mixing, and obviously hot ovens, and clearing up. But they spent five hours, totally engrossed, and absolutely loving it.

An excellent idea for a party, methinks...

(Judging/winning using the discretion of a secret ballot;) )

Make-Up Cake (Victoria Sponge)

Unicorn Cake (Marble Cake)

Glitter Pinata Cake (Chocolate Cake)

Oreo Cupcakes
Well done to everyone involved, particularly the host in her very own Funktional Kitchen, and to those amazingly creative children - you are all winners!

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Valentine's Treats - Chocolate Covered Honeycomb - Recipe

As Valentine's Day approaches, much as I can't stand the clichés, I couldn't resist making something sweet and even quite cute to mark the day. I made these to bring around to a friend's house, for a multi-couples dinner, so we can all avoid following the hoards of enforced romantic nights out on Tuesday...
These are really easy to make, and taste almost like Crunchie bars. My first attempt was not so good - they tasted somewhat burnt, but the second time they worked beautifully.
Make sure you have everything to hand before you start, as once the mixture hits the right temperature, you need to move fast!
I recommend making them not too far in advance, and storing them in an airtight container in the fridge, so they don't shrivel up when you are ready to serve them...
Chocolate-dipped Honeycomb

Makes: 16-20 (depending on how you smash it up!)
Prep Time: 10-15 minutes (plus cooling time)
Decorating Time: 20 minutes (plus setting time)


150 g golden caster sugar
75 g golden syrup
2 level teaspoons bicarbonate of soda.

100 g milk/dark chocolate
80 g red candy melts
Heart-shaped sprinkles/confetti


To prepare, line a baking tin loosely with greaseproof paper. I used a 20 cm square one, but you can use a bigger one and get thinner shards.

Sieve the bicarbonate of soda into a small bowl so it's ready to chuck in when needed.

In a large saucepan (it needs to be large as the mixture will triple in size at least), slowly melt the sugar and golden syrup until the sugar has dissolved. You can stir it to prevent any crystallization. Bring it up to a boil and let it boil for about 2 minutes (no longer!) until it turns an amber colour, then take it off the heat.. If you have a sugar thermometer let it come up to 150 C then take it off the heat.

Off the heat, quickly add the sieved bicarbonate of soda and whisk it really fast. The mixture will rise up and create lots of air bubbles - whisk it well to absorb all the bicarb - you don't want it to taste soapy!

Immediately pour this mixture into your prepared tin and allow it to cool completely.

Once it's cooled, break it into pieces - you can try cutting it neatly but it's unlikely to work, it will just shatter into shards!

Naked Honeycomb

To decorate, melt the chocolate in a Bain-Marie, and dip each shard into the melted chocolate. Set aside on clean greaseproof paper to set.

Melt the candy melts, and add a little olive oil to make a smooth piping consistency. Make sure it's not too hot when you pipe, as it will melt the chocolate! Using a thin nozzle (or just the end of the piping bag snipped off) pipe heart shapes, fill them in, and allow to set. If you wish to stick on extra heart-shaped sprinkles at this point, or any other lovey-dovey stuff, go for it!

With any leftover candy melts, you can make little heart sweeties. Aw!!!