Posts tagged ‘baking with kids’

June 3, 2010

Teacher treats … Chocolate Chip Scones and Banana Nut Bread

by heikes3

As mentioned before, the end of the school year always brings me even closer to my oven. It is the time to thank the teachers for all their hard work and another great year for our girls. A sure winner is the banana nut bread that regularly was mentioned in the teacher’s thank you notes.

This year, I thought it would be a great idea to bake it with the girls. I had it all planned out, even the cute little origami baskets they would be baking in and certainly a great banana nut bread recipe.

TheseĀ  baskets, I thought, would make the presentation just perfect. We got out 8×10″ white sheets of paper and cut out the same size of baking paper and folded. Very cute, indeed.

I put them on a baking sheet, not to close to one another so they would have enough room to bake separately. I was a bit worried about the sides being a bit wobbly, you know the part where the handle is supposed to be. Hm, as the batter baked and rose, it pushed just as much on the sides. Well, what happens if there isn’t ample resistance? The banana breads ended up looking as wide as they were long. I should have really taken a picture, but I was so displeased with myself, I did not have enough humor left. I wanted to hand the teachers something scrumptious the next morning.

I decided to make our success-proven Chocolate Chip Scones, cut up the banana bread and present those to the teachers with a cute little sign, wrapped in cellophane paper finished with a bright, cheery ribbon.

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May 18, 2010

Amerikaner/Black and White cookies

by heikes3

It’s the end of the school year. That always means I will be baking for end-of-year parties. With most people bringing chocolate chip cookies, I usually try to make something different. This year, I stumbled across an old recipe of Amerikaner. They are like your Black and White Cookies.

Why are they called Amerikaner (Americans) in Germany? Nobody is sure, but there are two good stories. In one GI’s were not able to find all the ingredients for an American Cake during the Second World War, thus creating the “Amerikaner”. The other has Germans not being able to pronounce “Black and White Cookies” which the Americans brought over in the 50’s, so that they just called them “Amerikaner”. Either one has their origins from the Americans and I thank you for it!

I love their vanilla flavored, cakey-soft texture with a slightly crunchy icing on the underside, which becomes the upper side. Oh, and the choices of icings and decorations – there are no limits. The traditional icing is just powdered sugar and water- at least in Germany- but who is to keep you from using melted chocolate or colors in your icing? This is actually a wonderful treat to make or decorate with children. They get to make faces with M&M’s, beautiful sprinkles or melted chocolate in a candy melt bottle. As you can see our Emily had quite a lot of fun with it!

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