Mellow Mummy: Cooking With Children : Mr. Tumble's Spotty Biscuits : Taking life as it comes...

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Cooking With Children : Mr. Tumble's Spotty Biscuits

These brightly coloured biscuits were inspired by CBeebies' Star Mr. Tumble and his yellow spotty bag. Lara and I made biscuits this weekend at her request and I thought I would add some brightly coloured fun to the mix. Cooking with children as young as Lara can be tricky because of the levels of concentration that need to be maintained (not a 2-year-old's forte) but iced biscuits make a great cooking experience because the process neatly splits into three stages, none of which requires a long period of concentration and, if your children really aren't interested in one stage, you can complete it yourself and hope that an hour or so later they will be more willing to engage in the next stage.

180g plain flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
125g softened butter or margarine
125g granulated sugar
1 medium egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the decoration...
65g icing sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 to 3 drops yellow food colouring
Dr. Oetker sugar Polka Dots
4 or 5 glace cherries, halved


  1. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt.

  2. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together. Start slowly and then move up to a medium speed until the mixture is really light and fluffy.

  3. Add the vanilla extract and about two thirds of the egg (if you add the whole egg, the mixture will be a bit too sloppy). Beat until the mixture is well combined.

  4. Gradually add the flour mixture to the liquid mixture and beat until fully blended together. Alternatively, you can just shove everything into one bowl all at once and beat it together in the electric mixer, just as Lara did, and the result will be just as tasty!

  5. If the dough needs a little more flour, add it at this point and then place the dough in a piece of cling film, wrap it tightly and then put it in the fridge for an hour.

  6. * * * * *

  7. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees (or a little less for a fan oven)

  8. On a floured work surface, roll out the dough until it is just over half a centimeter thick. It is quite a sticky dough so make sure you use enough flour to stop it sticking, but not so much that you change the texture or flavour of the dough.

  9. cooking with children rolling out the dough

  10. Cut the dough into shapes with cookie cutters and place them onto greased or lined baking sheets. Our cookie cutters are quite small. The mixture made us 35 biscuits.

  11. Bake the biscuits for about 15 minutes or until golden and still a little wobbly to the touch. Once cooked, transfer them to wire racks and let them cool completely.

  12. * * * * *

  13. To make the icing, stir together the icing sugar, lemon juice and food colouring until smooth. Spread the icing over the biscuits and then sprinkle them with the polka dots and glace cherries. Leave for a little while for the icing to set before eating.

cooking with children mr tumble biscuits

Note: Lara was sent the Dr. Oetker Polka Dots and vanilla essence for review.
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