March 15 – cockade cookies and other activities

Perhaps this post should be written in Hungarian as March 15 is one of the most prominent national holidays in Hungary. And it means more to the Hungarians than to anybody else.

Last year we celebrated it with lots of fun activities like the ice experiment or the 3 Ps: pompoms, patterning and painting.

And this year…

I had very little time to prepare for our national holiday so I took the easy way and downloaded/printed/laminated an absolutely fantastic collection of activities from gyereketeto.hu

Here are the activities I prepared:

E. started with the pre-writing practice:

 

 

Then she read (!!!) the questions herself concerning the sheet in front of her (like Which is the biggest cockade? or How many flags turn left?)

Clearly you can see she was enjoying it

A little bit of maths – counting and matching numbers and dice:

 

Finished

After the activities we went on to make cockade cookies. Click for original cockade cookie recipe.

What you need (5-7 cookies):

1 tube (150gr) sweetened condensed milk here you can read about the difference between condensed and evaporated milk– something that I myself have just learnt)
80-100 gr grated coconut
food colouring (in our case red and green)
(In the original recipe the proportions are double)

How to prepare it:

We mix the condensed milk and the coconut so we get a playdoh-like texture. (Well, we did not unfortunately. We need to make it again to experiment with the proportions)

We’ve learnt a new expression: evaporated milk

Halve the mixture and add red food colouring to one part.
Take the one third of the remaining white mixture and add the green food colouring.
Make green balls and place them on baking paper (on a tray).

Yes, yes… that is Baby Sister on me in a sling

Around the green ball make a white “sausage” then around it a red one. They should touch each other. Our mixture didn’t turn out so well. I couldn’t make “sausages” so I just placed the stuff in circles. E. was very helpful… with cleaning (i.e. licking).

Pre-heat the oven at 150 Celsius degrees and dry the cookies out within 15-20 minutes. (We had a problem with this because after 10 minutes they got a little brown. So I turned the oven down to 100 degrees and let them stay in for another 5 minutes)

Before baking

 

A little over-baked still tasted nice

They’re tasty and crunchy; for me a little too sweet so I don’t mind we have fewer cookies than in the original recipe.

Of course, we spent our time in Hungarian and E. learnt quite a few new words, some international ones like huszár and csákó 🙂

Baking and reading (with recipe)

We’ve been cooking and baking with E. a lot ever since she could sit on the kitchen counter safely. (Check out my housework fun or Christmas gingerbread baking blog posts on our cokking adventures)

This week one day there was one of the rare occasions that L. (E.’s baby sister) was not sleeping in a sling on me so I managed to put her down and I could prepare a baking activity for E. while she was at the nursery.

As E. is familiar with the alphabet (check out this post on the alphabet activities and other ABC posts) and quite a lot of sight words (I haven’t written about it separately but I should) and E. has been handling picture and story books since she was born, it is no problem for her to recognise/read certain words.

I wanted to expand her knowledge of recognising words in a fun way.

Here is our oat and pumpkin cookie baking and reading fun:

I prepared everything beforehand (maybe next time it’ll be a measuring activity, when SHE can prepare all the ingredients).

Whoops… the R is missing from “butter” – sorry about the poor photo

Ingredients:

  • 150 g oat flakes
  • 100 g flour (I used oat and wholemeal flour mixed)
  • 100 g sugar (I use Xylitol)
  • 100 g butter or margarine
  • 120 g pumpkin purée (pre-baked)
  • 1 teaspoonful of baking powder
  • 1 egg

    optional: 

  • 5 g dried fruit of any kind (I use cranberries and raisins but you can add chocolate chips too)
  • vanilla extract
I made little cards for her to read and I placed them in front of each bowl. The twist was I mixed them up before she started the activity. 
First, she needed to swap the cards around to place them in front of the right bowl.

After that she cracked the egg.

Then the mixing could start. She added everything in a big bowl. I asked her to report me what she was doing as in a cooking show.
– I’m putting the flour in.
– Now comes the butter.

After all this, I made little balls out of the mixture (she doesn’t like to dirty her hands) and placed them on a tray covered with baking paper. Finally, I managed to convince her to flatten the balls with her fingers and palm.

It was a lovely treat after dinner time and we practised a lot of English. (Unfortunately the cookies were gone so quickly I couldn’t take a photo of them)

Do you cook or bake with your little one(s)? Let me know what in the comments.