Sunday, 15 January 2012

Baking on the edge: how I do it with a 3 year old

Firstly, here is why my January diet is Not Going Well:

It's frosty outside and we can't play in the garden. I love baking and I have an extensive collection of cookery books. I have two drawers full of different sized cake tins. I made my own wedding cake. Baking is an excellent cold weather indoor child friendly activity , but:

1. Do an easy recipe. Three year olds prefer the "chuck it all in and bash it about" school of cookery.
2. Try not to get too wound up about hygiene. Your "helper" IS going to lick the spoon and put it back in the mix.
3. The mix contains raw egg. I don't care about this much and we still lick the bowl. But if you think the sight of your child licking raw mix is going to freak you out, think it through first.
4. Try to make something you can decorate. Kids LOVE this. We usually make one of two things: fairy (cup) cakes or a Victoria sponge (the pic is of a chocolate Victoria sponge we made today). And here's the thing: I buy a tub of pre-made "frosting". I KNOW it's easy to make but it's much less hassle to just hand the child the icing already done.
5. Be aware: your child WILL suck sweets then use them to decorate the cakes.

and finally....

6. Ssssh, don't tell but sometimes I don't do the baking part at all. I buy a dozen plain fairy cakes at the supermarket. They are very very cheap (about 60p). I buy a tub of "frosting". Then I get out the sprinkles etc. Mia likes this as much as the actual baking.


  1. Ohh Mia is very proud of her cake... Xx

  2. This recipe sounds fantastic.. Nothing better than a cake that a sweet little girl put together by licking the spoon/bowl and put all her sweet touches too..
    Now ,who would want to diet ..when you have a sweet and pretty little cook ,like Mia??
    Happy cooking.. and just enjoy Mia while she's little... Thats the most fun time of your lives...

    Mia.......your cake looks yummy!!! wish I could taste it..Please , eat a peice for me.. You look adorable in this picture.

  3. How utterly delicious!!! Does it taste as good as it looks??? Guess there is not even a crumb left.
    Just discovered your blog, via Rachel (H of P). Off to have a peek around your site...

  4. Hello Doobee, nice to see you here! It's a Delia Smith recipe so very nice indeed ;0)
    Judy we will do as you suggest and eat you a piece - see how selfless I am... tee hee
    Thanks Rachel xx

  5. Hi, I found your blog via Rachel too. My kids are now aged 18 - 11 but I have been cooking with them for about 15 years and you're right its messy and not massively hygenic but they love it and from those chocolate and marshmallow crispy cakes (first ever biggest boy bake!!) my three eldest can all now cook full meals. Funny how they never learned to wash up though ...
    Sue x