In these days of Playstation 4s and toy adverts that start as early as August, it isn’t always easy to teach children that Christmas is about spending time with each other and not just the presents under the tree.
The Christmas break is the ideal opportunity to spend some family time with your little ones, and these simple foodie ideas are perfect for creative kids with short-attention spans! These recipes are pretty much fool-proof too, so don’t be afraid to try them out if you’re a little adverse to the cooker…
Super-Simple Reindeer Biscuits
Throughout the year these can be whipped out in just 20 minutes of preparation and cooking time – plus they’re so simple that you’ll probably have most of these recipes in your store cupboard. These biscuits are tasty and unfailingly popular with family members – a perfect present for grandparents who have it all.
Ingredients (makes 8-12):
- 200g self-raising flour
- 100g butter, slightly softened and roughly cut into cubes
- 100g sugar
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- Raspberry jam
- Small pretzels (for antlers)
- Small tube of icing
- Pre heat the oven to 200c.
- Create a simple crumble mix by mixing the flour, butter and sugar between your fingers.
- Once a breadcrumb consistency has formed, add the lightly beaten egg and mix by hand until a stiff dough has formed.
- Roll out the dough so it’s half a cm thick. Cut circular shapes using a cookie cutter – I usually find a cutter about the diameter of a half pint glass works well.
- Make a well in the middle of the cookie (careful not to go through the dough) and fill with a small dollap of raspberry jam – this will form Rudolph’s nose!
- Bake in the oven for around 15 minutes – keep checking regularly as the biscuits can quickly go from golden to overdone.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack. Keep any wandering hands away from the hot jam at this point – take it from somebody who learned the hard way – it’s molten!
- Once cooled but still lovely and warm, attach the antler pretzels and Smartie eyes, securing with a dab of icing.
Mini Mozzarella and Chorizo Pizzas
Technically this is cheats party food, but as long as it tastes great who’s complaining? These are lovely little bites for making with hungry little ones and you create your own adult party batch at the same time. The recipe also allows for lots of variations too, try using chilli jam as a base if you like your party nibbles hot.
Ingredients (1 flatbread will make around 6 small bases):
- Store bought flatbreads (we told you we were cheating a little!)
- Finely sliced chorizo. Chorizo sausage will work well, but try to find slices in the cooked meats aisle
- 1 jar of tomato passata (or red onion chutney or chilli jam)
- Mozzerella, cut into small cubes
- Cherry tomatoes, halved (1 per pizza)
- Salt and pepper
- Pre heat the oven to 190c.
- Using a cookie cutter, cut small circular bases out of the flatbreads. This will give that party nibble feel to your pizzas.
- Place a slice of chorizo onto the bases and top with the tomato passata or chutney of your choice (this will make for a lovely surprise when bitten into).
- Top with small cubes of cheese, 2 cherry tomato halves and a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper.
- Place in the oven and bake for around 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the bases are crispy.
Homemade Hot Chocolate
Enjoyable for the little ones and a perfect Christmas party tipple for the adults, this can be made in two batches – a version for them and a lovely boozy version for the grown-ups. Using just a handful of ingredients makes this recipe very simple, but leave the kids stuff to the decorating and prep, a hot hob is no place for little hands!
Ingredients (makes 2):
- 600ml milk (full fat or semi-skimmed)
- 1 standard pot of double cream (124ml)
- 100g chocolate, broken into pieces (milk is usually best for children)
- Mini marshmallows, chocolate buttons and chocolate shavings
- Optional dash of brandy or rum for the adults
- Place the milk, cream and chocolate into a pan and slowly bring to the boil, whisking as you go. If you’re adding alcohol, do so just before serving.
- Pour into tall glasses and top with the treats.
Sound delicious? You don’t need any expert culinary skills to create these delicious recipes, but they’ll deliver on taste, sophistication and make you the ultimate party food mummy!
Victoria is a cookery enthusiast and blogger for Christmas Tree World, a specialist provider of artificial Christmas trees in the UK.