When Food Was Fun!

A good cook is like a sorceress who dispenses happiness.

ELSA SCHIAPIRELLI

Summer, Food, Friends…perfect fit!

The kitchen is the best place for mega fun! Here are some edible ideas for summer treats, eats and beats to boredom.

  1. Don’t want to cook? Make food boards. Serve on a chopping board or tray rolled up meats or chunky tuna, assorted breads, crackers, chips, popcorn, etc., cheese squares or cubes, add cucumbers, carrots, berries, hard-boiled eggs, olives, dill pickles…what ever you feel like. (have your kids decide) Bring out some toothpicks  and all sit around and nibble. (Do it for breakfast with cut up waffles, syrup to dunk, berries, melons, ham, hard boiled eggs, piles of granola, etc.)

“…he that cannot lick his fingers goes not with me… ”               William Shakespeare

2. Smoothies are a craze. Let your child make up their own. One thing fun is to purchase some inexpensive fun types of cups or silly straws. Many you can get at the dollar store. Let your child pick out a “special cup” that can be just their own.  Have these “special cups” be only for smoothie concoctions.

3. Wait, smoothies make great Popsicles. Pour them in  ice-cube trays, and cover with foil. Stick a toothpick through the foil (it stands up straight) and freeze for a few hours. Let your children eat these all summer, or chop with a fork and it turns into a slushy. Oh, so good on a hot day!

4. Popsicle Competition. Who can make the best tasting flavors? Homemade Popsicles can be made by juicing, adding fruit juices together, lemonade flavors, or adding chunks of fruit into the trays. Have a family or friendly competition and everyone be the judge.

Tip: save small container lids. Cut a small slit in the center and place the Popscicle stick through the slit. Not the lid catches the drips and not on the clothes. Hooray!

5. SCREAM it’s white sugar!! Jello Jigglers are a great sensory experience and they taste good. Allow your child to help make them. The recipe is on the jello box. Cut into shapes with cookie cutters. Let them use scissors (washed) to cut the jello up and play with it. Eating and playing is allowed. (Hot water is required)

6. Jello Fish Bowl. Make up a blue Jell-o recipe and put into a glass bowl. Place green or purple grapes in the bottom. Allow the jello to set and then use a skewer to add gummy fish. Share with family or friends. This fish bowl does not stink…

7. Going fishing?: Place fishy crackers in a tiny container. Using straight pretzels as the fishing pole, have your little fisher-people dip rod in the cream cheese, peanut butter, butter, or Nutella bate and stick in the fish to catch some. Then eat them up. Try it yourself.

8. Fruit Roll ups are great for crafts. You can make mini purses, bows on cupcakes, flowers, circles. Go to town…

9. Peanut Butter Clay: 1 cup peanut butter, 1 1/2 cups powdered milk, 3 Tables spoons honey. Mix together well then play. (you will want to take a snitch)

10. Dirt Dessert: (Family Favorite) Smash Oreo cookies up to look like dirt. The best way I found to include the kids is to put it in two freezer bags and let them hit the bag with a rolling pin or spoon. Layer clear cups, or a big clean flower pot, with chocolate, butter scotch or vanilla pudding (Whichever you prefer), the Oreos, cream cheese and or whipped cream. Make sure the tops are completely covered with the “dirt.” Place artificial flowers on the top as a center piece or make flowers with gum drops and skewers. Serve the large pot with a clean/ food safe potting shovel. It is a great crowd pleaser!

11. If you read any great children’s books this summer use the content to create a special themed dinner to encourage and continue reading. The story Stone Soup is a great starter. It doesn’t work unless you have the kids help.

12. Turn your tongue Blue Day! Its another family contest and get the camera ready. Choose which is the winning factor for tongue dying. Frozen blueberries, grapes or raspberries, blue fruit pops, blue jello, blue Italian ice, blue gummy sharks, or blue gum balls. I’m not telling which will win!

13. Flavor your own popcorn: You can make this into a contest too. (But everyone is the winner!)

14. Did you know many stuffed animal and doll friend’s birthdays are in the summer? Go figure. Have your child make a party for them that all are invited to. Of course the Lovey will request their favorite dinner or dessert. It is up to you to figure out what that edible surprise will be. Involve your child and the birthday toy. (Chocolate frosted grahammies are easy and delicious and make a great easy piled up cake…)

(Taken from a “Summer Fun” book I compiled many years ago for family and friends)

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