Handstand Kids

Tag Archive for cooking

Fit and Fun for the Summer!

Summer sun can mean lots of outdoor lounging, but don’t let the light go to waste! Take this time to encourage your kids to get moving in the fresh outdoor air. Recent studies from CBC News show that children may be more physically active when their friends run and jump more. That means getting a gang together to engage in some activity will encourage them to be more active on a regular basis. Kids in peer groups that included others who were physically active were six times more likely to change their activity levels. Swimming, roller blading and skateboarding are a few fun group activities to get your kids’ energy levels up but why not play these fun biking games from Family Fun to put a little excitement into biking?

TIGHTROPE TOLLBOOTH

Using the side of a piece of sidewalk chalk, draw a 3-inch-wide, 50-foot-long chalk line on the sidewalk or driveway and challenge bikers to keep both wheels on the line at all times. Up the ante by giving each rider a penny and placing an empty soup can near the line’s midpoint. The player who can drop the penny in the can and successfully complete the course is king or queen of the road.

RIDE THE LINE

Draw a 3-inch-wide, 50-foot curving line and use a stopwatch to time riders. The rider who can stay on the line and complete the course the fastest wins.

After all of that activity, you’ll want to make sure that they stay refreshed and hydrated. Handstand Kids love the outdoors, but they’ll always find their way back to the kitchen. Try making this fun summer recipe from the Handstand Kids Chinese Cookbook with them in between play times!

 

Year of the Monkey Mango Smoothies

Ingredients

6 ounces silken tofu, drained

1 medium banana, peeled and cut in half

1 mango

1/4 inch fresh ginger root, peeled and grated (optional)

2/3 cup soy milk

1 tablespoon honey

4 ice cubes

Tools

Cutting board

Knife

Measuring cups

Measuring spoons

Fine grater

Blender

Tall drinking glasses

Instructions

1. Cut the mango by placing the mango with one flat side resting on the cutting board. Slice the mango lengthwise along the flat side next to the seed. Turn mango over and repeat on the other side. You will have 2 halves of the mango with pulp inside. Carefully cut lengthwise through the mango pulp down to the skin, being careful not to cut through the skin. Turn sideways and cut lengthwise again until you have a cross-hatch pattern. Turn the mango inside out using your thumbs to press the pulp outwards. Carefully slice out the diced pulp by cutting between the cubed mango pulp and the skin. Discard the skin and seed.

2. Place banana, mango, tofu, soy milk, and ginger, if using, into the blender. Blend on medium speed for 30 seconds.

10. Add the honey and ice cubes and blend again until smooth.

11. Pour into 2 frosty tall drinking glasses. Enjoy!

Alternative

Add 2/3 cup plain yogurt if tofu is not available.

Got a favorite summer activity? Post a picture of you and your kids getting physical to the Handstand Kids Facebook and Twitter!

 

Happy Birthday Cookie Monster!

It’s important to eat your fruits and vegetables but our Handstand Kids work so hard that sometimes it’s OK for a treat. What better day to celebrate than the birthday of our cookie-loving pal from Sesame Street, Cookie Monster! Cookie will be turning a whopping 46 years old today but there’s no reason that he wouldn’t still enjoy cooking with Handstand Kids! Your children can celebrate with Cookie by making our Here Comes the Bride Cookies from our Handstand Kids Mexican Cookbook.

Here Comes the Bride, Wedding Cookies

Ingredients

2 cups flour

1 cup butter (mantequilla), softened

1 cup confectioners’ sugar (azứcar)

1 cup ground nuts (almonds or pecans)

1 tablespoon water

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

¼ teaspoon salt

Tools

Measuring cups

Measuring spoons

Medium bowl

Nonstick baking sheet

Small bowl

Spatula

Spoon

Wooden spoon

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the mantequilla, vanilla extract and ½ cup of the confectioners’ azứcar.
  3. Stir in the flour, salt and nuts. Stir in the water to help the dough come together. Mix well until the dough is formed.
  4. Use your hands to roll the dough into 1-inch balls. Place the balls on the baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes, until the cookies are set but not browning. Remove the baking sheet from the oven. Then use the spatula to remove the cookies from the baking sheet. Allow them to cool slightly.
  6. Pour the remaining ½ cup of confectioners’ azứcar into the small bowl. Roll the cookies through the azứcar so that they get coated with it. Serve.

Alternative

In a microwave-safe bowl, melt 8 ounces of chocolate chips in microwave. Drizzle the chocolate over the cookies and let the chocolate harden before serving.

Alternative: Add 1 cup of chocolate chips to the dough. Also, melt chocolate chips in the microwave for 1 minute and dip the ends of the cooled biscotti into the mixture. Refrigerate dipped biscotti for 1 hour and enjoy!

 

Make sure your little monster post their favorite cookies to the pages of our Facebook and Twitter!

 

Eating As A Family

Eating together as a family is very important, especially for younger children. Since Handstand Kids already enjoy being in the kitchen, make sure to also teach them that it is important to get together as a family. So many lessons can be learned around the table and here are a few great takeaways.

  • Communication
    • Sharing a meal provides a comfortable setting that allows children a time to talk. Discuss family issues and your day-to-day activities in an environment that puts everyone in the mood to talk!
  • Encourage healthy eating
    • Use your handstand kids cookbooks to create a yummy, kid friendly meal that they can help prepare! Eating in vastly reduces your calorie intake, and you know that your kids are not ingesting any unnecessary additives.
  • Helps promote proper etiquette
    • Kids are great at mimicking and by demonstrating proper table manners you can show them how to behave at the table
  • Embrace traditions, old and new
    • Remember and pass down old family recipes and also create new family favorites with the recipes from the Handstand Kids Cookbook. Try this recipe for Beef and Broccoli from our Handstand Kids Chinese Cookbook!

Make sure that you post pictures of your family enjoying a meal – whether or not you use a Handstand Kids recipe to our Facebook and Twitter!

 

Tomatoes are Tops!

Summer’s perfect weather lets us finally go outside after a long winter! Why not add some new activities into the mix by planting a summer garden? Gardening can be fun and easy and of course you can use what you grow in the kitchen! Tomatoes are a staple that many everyone enjoys and these growing tips from eHow.com that are specially designed for kids!

Materials:
• Tomato seeds
• Plastic pots
• Soil
• Trowel or shovel
• Wooden Stakes
• String

Instructions:
1. Poke holes in the bottom of the plastic pots if there are none for drainage
2. Fill the pots to the top with potting soil. Instruct your kids to put three seeds in each pot, pushing them just under the surface of the soil
3. Place the pots indoors in a sunny and warm location
4. Feel the dirt often for moisture. Water the pots if the soil feels dry
5. Wait for the seeds to sprout. Weed out weaker seedlings so that each pot only has one in it
6. Transplant the seedlings outside one the danger of frost has passed by digging a hole in the soil of your garden and carefully transferring the seedlings out of their pots and into the ground in a sunny spot.
7. Check soil moisture daily, watering the plants if it doesn’t rain.
8. Put the stakes in the ground for support as the tomato plants approach 1 foot tall. Gently tie the tomato plants to the stakes.
9. Instruct your kids to harvest the tomatoes when ripe. Have them twist each tomato by the stem to remove it, to avoid damaging the plant.

If you can’t wait for these beauties to grow, enjoy tomatoes with this delicious Guacamole recipe from the Handstand Kids Mexican Cookbook.

Farmer’s Market Chips, Pico de Gallo Salsa and Guacamole

Ingredients
4 plum tomatoes (tomates)
2 ripe Hass avocados (aguacates), halved and pitted
2 limes (limas), halved
½ white onion (cebolla)
1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
Salt and pepper
1 teaspoon jalapeno (optional)

Tools
Cutting board
Fork
Knife
Measuring cups
Measuring spoons
Medium bowl
Plastic gloves
Wooden spoon

Instructions for Pico De Gallo Salsa
1. Wearing the plastic gloves, dice the tomates, cebolla and optional jalapeno. Place them all into the medium bowl.
2. Chop the cilantro leaves and add to bowl.
3. Cut one lima in half, squeeze the juice into the bowl and mix well.
4. Add salt and pepper to taste.

At this stage, you’ve made pico de gallo! Continue on to make it into guacamole…
5. Spoon the aguacate meat into a bowl and use a fork to mash it into your desired texture.
6. Cut one lima in half, squeeze the juice into the bowl and mix well. Then add the pico de gallo to the aguacate and mix.
7. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Alternative
For mango salsa, dice 1 mango and add to Step 1 for a fruity version of the pico de gallo.

Will you be growing tomatoes? Post plant pictures on our Facebook and Twitter!

End of the Year Gifts for Teachers!

Your child’s teacher has spent the past 270 days helping your kids grow and learn. With summer around the corner and the last days of school approaching, teach your children to appreciate their mentors by making gifts for them to take to school. Create some of these fun crafts from Disney Family Fun your youngsters and see their teacher’s delighted faces!

Of course if you’d rather, baking a sweet treat for your teachers is always an option – and it’s our favorite. The Handstand Kids Baking Around the World Cookbook has a delicious recipe for Carrot Walnut Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting that would make any teacher smile!

Ingredients

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup dark brown sugar

2 eggs

3/4 cup vegetable oil

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 ¼ cups shredded carrots

1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Tools

Measuring cups

Measuring spoons

Whisk

Mixing bowl

Rubber spatula

Lined cupcake pans or baking cups

Instructions

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.  Whisk the sugars, eggs and oil together in a large mixing bowl.

3.  Add the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon to the sugar mixture and whisk until combined.

4.  Use spatula to fold in carrots and walnuts.

5.  Spoon batter into the lined cupcake pans or baking cups and bake for 20 minutes.

6.  Remove and let cool at room temperature, then top with Cream Cheese Frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients

1 cup cream cheese, softened at room temperature

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons sour cream

1 ½ teaspoons vanilla

3 cups powdered sugar

Tools

Mixing bowl
Electric mixer or hand mixer

Sifter

Rubber spatula

Measuring cups

Measuring spoons

Instructions

1.  Place cream cheese in mixing bowl. Beat with electric mixer on low speed until smooth.

2.  Scrape down the sides of bowl with spatula and beat to make sure there are no lumps.

3.  Add softened butter and beat on low speed until smooth. Add sour cream and beat on low speed until smooth.

4.  Turn off mixer and slowly add powdered sugar to the bowl.

5.  Add vanilla and beat again on low speed until smooth.

6.  Spread frosting on cupcakes and serve.

Alternative: Make carrot cake by placing the batter in a square baking pan and baking for 40 to 45 minutes.

 

Will you be making end of the year gifts with your children for their teachers? Be sure to post pictures to our Facebook and Twitter pages. Happy crafting!

 

Some Of Our Biggest Fans

You may have seen us post two terrific photos of Noah and Nathan earlier today!  We’ve got them here for you again, plus a bit more about the dynamic duo!

Noah and Nathan received our cookbook kits from their amazing mom for Chanukah this year and have been cooking up a storm since!

Noah is 9 and loves making the Bean & Cheese Burrito from our Mexican Cookbook Kit!

Nathan is 7 and he prefers our Italian cookbook kit and making lasagna!

When the brothers aren’t cooking from our Handstand Kids cookbook kits, they love to make mom’s specialty, “Pasta alla Mama,” which is pasta with cottage cheese, a little butter and parmesan cheese!

Keep cooking, chefs!

Celebrating Cinco de Mayo!

Cinco de Mayo is a celebration to commemorate the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla. Although it is not a day to celebrate Mexico’s independence, you and your kids can show your spirit by partaking in some festive Quesadillas from the Handstand Kids Mexican Cookbook.

Ingredients

4 8 or 10-inch flour tortillas

2 cups shredded Monterey Jack or Mexican blend cheese (queso)

½ cup salsa

½ cup guacamole (optional)

¼ cup sour cream (optional)

1 cup cooked veggies (pick the ones you like, including onion, mushrooms, bell peppers)

 

Tools

Knife

Large nonstick skillet

Measuring cups

Spatula

 

Instructions

  1. Place the tortillas flat and sprinkle ½ cup queso and ½ cup cooked veggies on half of each.
  2. Fold the tortillas in half to cover the queso.
  3. Place the tortillas in the large skillet and cook over a medium-high heat until one side is lightly browned (about 2 to 3 minutes).
  4. Use the spatula to flip the tortillas and cook the other side until lightly browned and the queso has melted. Remove from heat.
  5. Cut into triangles and serve with salsa, guacamole and sour cream.

Enjoy!!

Healthy Summer Snacks

The summer’s heating up which means you’ll need to cool down! If you’re dying for a treat try and keep them light but healthy so you can recharge! Stay kid friendly with some of these tasty snacks below!

 

Carrot-Ginger Dip from Familyfun.com is great for dipping carrot sticks and cucumber slices or even spread on whole grain bagels!

This Tropical Strawberry Smoothie from AllRecipes.com will quench your thirst and is made with healthy yogurt, not fatty ice cream!

A simple Cool Beans Salad from Nick Jr.Com is easy to make by tossing together!

 

What summer recipes keep you fit and full? Be sure to post them on our Facebook wall!

Celiac Awareness Month

We’ve talked about Celiac Disease and gluten free diets in another post, but did you know that May is totally devoted to Celiac Awareness?? This month we hope we can serve you up with great gluten free recipes, resources and tips and tricks!

To start, we’d love to share a gluten free dessert from the newest addition to our Handstand Kids series, Baking Around the World!

And don’t forget, all of the Passover desserts we share with you a few weeks ago, just so happen to be gluten free as well! Take a look back here!

Enjoy! If you have any gluten free tips, be sure to share them on our Facebook wall!

Arleen Makes a Mean Cupcake

As you already know, Arleen Scavone, of Sweet Arleen’s, is our Celebrity of the Month. We absolutely love Arleen and are thrilled that she’s contributed such delicious recipes to our newest cookbook kit, Baking Around the World. We hope to see everyone at the launch party at her storefront this weekend!

Enjoy this recipe from the new cookbook, in the meantime!

Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting

Level 3, Makes about 20 cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened at room temperature
  • 1 ¾ cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 jar of strawberry jam

Tools

  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • 3 large bowls
  • Whisk
  • Electric mixer or hand mixer
  • Rubber spatula
  • Spoon
  • Lined cupcake pans or baking cups
  • Melon baller

Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Place the flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a large bowl and whisk to combine, set aside.
3. Place the softened butter and sugar in another large bowl and beat with an electric mixer on a low speed until smooth.
4. Add peanut butter to the bowl with the butter and sugar and mix on low speed until combined.
5. Add one egg and mix to combine. Repeat with remaining 2 eggs, mixing after each to combine before adding the next.
6. In another large bowl, whisk together the sour cream, vanilla extract, oil and buttermilk, set aside.
7. Add half of the dry flour mixture to the bowl with the butter. Mix on low speed until combined.
8. Add the sour cream mixture to the bowl and mix until combined.
9. Using rubber spatula, scrape down sides to make sure there are no lumps.
10. Add remaining flour mixture and mix until smooth.
11. Use a spoon to scoop the mixture into 20 lined cupcake pans or baking cups.
12. Bake cupcakes for approximately 20 minutes until golden brown, and let cool at room temperature.
13. Once cooled, use the melon baller to gently scoop out a small piece from the center of each cupcake.
14. Fill the holes with the strawberry jam. Cover tops of cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting.

Peanut Butter Frosting

Ingredients

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 5 tablespoons butter, softened at room temperature
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream

Tools

  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Large bowl
  • Electric mixer or hand mixer
  • Sifter
  • Rubber spatula

Instructions
1. Place the butter, vanilla, salt and peanut butter in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer or hand mixer until combined.
2. Use the sifter to place powdered sugar into the large bowl. Beat with mixer until there are no lumps.
3. Use the rubber spatula to scrape the sides of bowl, stirring any lumps until smooth.
4. Slowly mix in heavy cream until just combined. If you stir the icing too much, it will turn grainy and separate.
5. Spread frosting on cupcakes and serve!

Alternative: For those with nut allergies, try this recipe with sunflower seed butter. For a healthier alternative, use strawberry jam as frosting.

Enjoy!!