Thursday, March 27, 2014

ATLAS: No Bake Cooking with Tweens

Cooking with my tweens is one of my favorite things to do at my library. Despite not having an oven we manage to create some great dips, cookies and other no bake creations. Recipes for some of these creations and tips on doing this type of program can be found in a previous post.

I try to do a "Cooking with Ms. Kelly" program at least a few times a year. It is one of my standby themes for my monthly after school program for Grades 3-6, ATLAS (At The Library After School). This month's ended up occurring a few weeks late, thanks to the snow. Thankfully, the majority of the registered kids were still able to come on the new date.

I always start with the most complicated recipe first, just to get it out of the way. I found the recipe for no bake Snowball Cookies online, and adapted the measurements to accommodate single servings made by each child. I also changed it slightly based on the results when I tried making an individual serving at home. The finished handout and recipe can be found here. The kids enjoyed the cookies more than I expected. The orange juice and coconut give these cookies a tropical flavor, and I wasn't sure how many kids would like them. They were a big hit though, so I will definitely have to use this recipe again sometime.

Snowball cookies made by our youngest attendee.

Our second recipe was extremely simple. Each child got a can of tomato sauce and some spices and we made Pizza Dip. I encouraged the kids to be creative and experiment with their recipes, and I was glad to see them testing their dip and modifying their recipes to their own tastes. My handout can be found here.

Finally, we moved on to the dessert portion of our program. We made Smore's Pops. I used my crockpot to heat up chocolate, and we used some leftover chopsticks I had to dip marshmallows in it. The coated marshmallows were then sprinkled with crushed graham crackers.

The last two creations were made by me, mainly so the kids could try them. I found a great recipe for Eggless Cookie Dough Cookies here, and brought it in for the kids. I made sure each of the kids got a handout with the recipe.
The cookie dough might just be my new favorite recipe!
In the last minutes of the program I also made some microwave quesadillas for them to try. I wanted to give the kids a taste of a super simple snack they could make at home. It was great to see them combining recipes by dipping the quesadillas in their Pizza Dip.

The kids seemed to enjoy this program. One of the kids commented during the program that it was the "best afternoon ever", which is great to hear. They also seemed to like the recipes, which hasn't always been the case in the past.

Feel free to use these recipes at home or for programming with kids. Also make sure to let me know if you have any questions about this program, or great ideas for cooking with kids!