Tag Archives: sharon davis

Baking for My Valentine!

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This week we celebrate week two of Bake for Family Fun Month with “Baking for My Valentine” themed recipes and activities. People have long baked for the simple reason they want to do something special for those they love, and we’ve got them covered! Here are three great ideas to make your Valentine’s Day celebrations spectacular.

Idea 1: Visit Bake for Family Fun Valentine baking ideas at the Home Baking Association website for hundreds of ideas! Seriously, it’s Valentine’s Day Central with plenty to share.

Idea 2: Find baking tips and How-to-Bake videos
and more

Idea 3: Make a plan to mix and fix for someone special.

Only time to measure, not bake? Prep a DIY Cookie Mix in a Jar

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Bake for Family Fun Month

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Feb 1, 2017 – Families spending time together in the kitchen provides more than great eating! Whether it is measuring ingredients, mixing muffins, rolling dough for pizza or shaping cookies; time with children in the kitchen provides long lasting benefits. (Why Bake?) You wonder, where do I start? The Home Baking Association (HBA) has designated February as Bake for Family Fun Monthand has resources, recipes and activities to help families get started!

Parents should look no further than the Thrill of SkillThrill of Skill to help them determine age appropriate kitchen jobs beginning at age two. Ten Tips for Baking Success, Safe Kitchen Check List and Baking 101 Food Safety are free online resources at HomeBaking.org. Correct measuring techniques will help families be successful. Finding a task for each member of the family will keep everyone involved and share in the experience. Don’t forget while the recipe is baking families should do clean-up together.

Baking is an inexpensive family activity says Charlene Patton, Home Baking Association Executive Director. Benefits of baking include opportunities to use math, literacy, history, social studies, science and art. She suggests families visit HomeBaking.org to find recipes, family baking activities and resources to help families bake with children of all ages.

HBA features a weekly theme to help families plan recipes and activities during the month starting with Week One Let’s Get Started Baking”. Other upcoming themes include Baking for My Valentine”, Baking History and Traditionsand Baking for Others”. New features added online this year include special recipe substitutions, technique videos and step-by-step guides.

Baking together is a great opportunity to teach children kitchen skills and share family traditions. Make a treasured family recipes or create a new tradition. How about a make a bread dough and let everyone have fun shaping? The online Dough Sculpting Lesson is filled with tips for working with yeast dough as you shape alligators, turtles or bunnies. Remember whatever you bake be sure to take pictures that you can share and enjoy later.

HBA has many book and bake lessons! Pancakes, waffles, pizza, cookies… pick the lesson and while it is baking read a book and learn more about the ingredients or history of the recipe. Hundreds of ideas are included at HomeBaking.org with links to HBA members providing creative ways to help families have fun in the kitchen! Recipes, activities, experiments, book and bake lessons and videos are all part of Bake for Family Fun Month.

The Home Baking Association is a non-profit association with members dedicated to providing resources to encourage families to bake together. Be a part of the celebration and bake with your family during February and start a tradition for the year!

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Week One: Bake for Family Fun Month

Week 1: Let’s Get Started Baking

If you don’t bake, or teach baking, why get started?

Today my top three reasons to step into the kitchen and bake with family or children in our world include words-to-the-wise from child development professionals.

Baking builds STEAM at home You can model experimentation and apply science, tech, engineering, art, math PLUS culture, history and literacy, by baking.

Step 1: Science and math both require accurate measuring skills! Check this out!

Step 2: Conduct a measuring experiment at home, some additional kitchen science about yeast.
51whbyegzdl “Can-Do Kids”: Author Richard Rende, child development psychologist, explains, “Getting in the kitchen together contributes to raising confident, successful team-players. When children help create the meal, they get curious; they build cognitive and multi-sensory connections.”

 

Step 1: Post a skills check list for each person to see their skills and techniques grow.

Step 2: Groove your kitchen and baking food safety guidelines.

End picky, less-than-healthy expensive eating. Begin anytime, but especially young…age 2 or 3! Kids who help create what’s served up want to taste it! Stanford U. Professor Maya Adam, MD confirms, “What about adding value to your family’s day-to-day interaction by spending more time in the kitchen and involving the children whenever possible? Some parents are understandably worried, but the health risks of not teaching a kid to cook are far greater than giving them a sharp object!”

Step 1: Choose simple recipes, list ingredients, shop and get started.

Step 2: Everybody cleans up!

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The Power of Eggs

eggs_blogEvery ingredient in baking packs its own unique power.   January is perfect to focus on the simple but powerful egg. Here to help is the 2016 Home Baking Association educator award winner, Delaine Stendahl. Her new lesson, The Power of Eggs, is now available online. In her award-winning lesson, bakers explore how eggs function to:

  1. Leaven, or add air spaces. Long before we had baking soda or powder we relied on beaten whole eggs or whites to add air to batter. Waffles and angel food cakes are perfect examples of beaten egg white foam used to leaven in recipes.
  2. Bind, or hold together ingredients when baked, like cracked wheat and lean beef meatballs, soft cookies, cake or muffins.
  3.  Coagulate and hold the shape and open texture of baked goods, like cream puffs and popovers. Meringue can stand alone when baked as a gluten-free cookie like the Forgotten Cookie (Baking with Friends, HomeBaking.org ) or topping a pie or even as a pie shell. My mother made meringue as a savory egg-in-a-nest entrée.
  4. Emulsify or hold together in suspension two ingredients that don’t like to mix, as liquid and fat in a pudding or a lemon curd .
  5. Provide smooth texture in the pound cake or egg-rich yeast breads, and Portuguese Sweet Bread.
  6. Add color and browning with egg as an ingredient or by using an egg wash brushed on the surface of breads just before baking. View How to Use an Egg Wash. Also, check out our Dough Sculpting 101 lesson–  Learn to egg wash, p. 3
  7. Nourish morning, noon, snacks or night. Eggs, at only 70 calories each, add 13 essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamins B12, D and E, choline, and iron, 6 grams protein, and minimal sodium and sugars.

The Power of Eggs as a baking ingredient is delivered via foods we love. Eggs are great to “use what we have on hand” for family meals, crepes, egg noodles, omelets, frittatas, make-ahead stratas, hard-cooked in sandwiches or tossed salads and for nutritious desserts like early colonial puddings , custards, and flan.

Want to learn more? Check out A Bakers Dozen DVD Lessons for Better Baking or A Bakers Dozen Lab Manual for more about eggs as the super baking ingredient.

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Don’t forget to enter YOUR great baking lesson. You may receive the 2017 Educator Award. Go to HomeBaking.org for more info.

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Top 10 List of “do-ables”

This year has dealt a tough hand on our pre-Holiday gift preparations. No doubt I’m not the only one pinched for time. With under 10 days until Christmas Day, I’m hoping friends and family will grant us the gift of the 12 days of Christmas!

My Top 10 list of “do-ables” includes:

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10: Order NOW gift bags and tags—large, medium and small. Stock up on cute jars for mixes and Sugar Scrubs.

9: Toast a boatload of nuts and seeds for maximum flavor in all things baked.

8: Bake biscotti in large quantities. Double Chocolate Pecan will be the flavor-of-2016 for all my hot beverage seeking friends and family.

7: Homemade Caramel Corn ‘n Nuts will be perfect to gift with a good book or movie. I’ll make two batches.

6: Choose from a wide array of options and prepare Sugar Scrub for those who apply their sugar rather than savoring it.

5: Friends living by their onesy love to savor the season. Prepare jars of DIY muffin-mix. Include a six-cup muffin tin and attach the stir-in options.

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4: Prepare homemade fruit syrups  AND vast quantities of homemade Pancake or Waffle Mix to divide among friends with children. Don’t be afraid to make the mix with half whole wheat flour!

3: These Make-It-Yours cookie options will delight. Draft a grocery list to have the options at-the-ready.

2: Gift fresh-baked Cheddar Casserole Bread. Add a mini-tub of homemade Southwest Butter

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1: While working on gifts 2 to 10, get your bread machine in gear– you’ll be ready when guests arrive with Fruit of the Vine Rosemary Olive Snack Bread.

More tips and recipes from Red Star Yeast

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Smart Snacks

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Crisp fall days remind me of great after school snacks. We knew the ropes. We could have a piece of fruit, 2 cookies and milk. The fruit and the cookies were small in those days. What came next was equally important: a list of chores – indoors or out. We lounged about a half hour, then it was time to get busy.

“Smart snacking” wasn’t on the radar then, but our snack limits and activities (chores) were–all without a government agency within 200 miles. Today government gets involved because so many children are overweight or obese and snacks make up at least 27% of their daily calories. (Trends in Snacking Among U.S. Children view here)

HBA staff rolled up their sleeves to address the latest snack guidelines for schools along with Kansas State Department of Education’s Team Nutrition. Guidelines for in-school snacks can be found here.

Our goal: Provide bakers at home, in Family & Consumer Sciences classrooms, school clubs and cafeterias A Baker’s Dozen Smart

Snack Baking Recipes!

The Top 5 “smart snack baking” steps we used for developing the recipes include:

  1. Use 51% or more whole grain – whole wheat flour, oatmeal, whole cornmeal, flax meal are whole grains used in the recipes. Every serving is 8g or more whole grain.
    Baking with Whole Wheat Flour
  2. Portion control— we have to lose the “mega-sized” rolls, bread sticks, cookies, cupcakes or bars. A look at the Portion Distortion Interactive quizzes helps tell the story of our American weight gain.
  1. Control sugars with an icing drizzle…no ½-inch frostings.
  2. Reduce saturated fat—cream vegetable oil with butter and used flax meal egg substitute in some recipes. Check out this Kitchen Science handout
  3. Home-baking recipes are often less sodium than commercially baked goods. Using vegetable oil and unsalted butter also reduce sodium.

HBA can’t assign active chores for kids to get them moving, but we can offer A Baker’s Dozen Smart Snack Baking Recipes. The recipes can all be served or sold in school hours and include:

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Breakfast: Oatmeal Fruit Bars; Apple Cinnamon Rolls; Carrot Streusel Coffeecake

Breads: Bread Sticks; Confetti Cornbread (still testing!) and Soft Pretzels

Cakes: Buttermilk Chocolate; Carrot Cupcakes and Spice Snack Cake

Cookies: Cinnamon Crunch; Double Chocolate; Oatmeal; Soft and Chewy Chocolate Chip; Soft Sugar

Dessert: Country Fruit Cobbler

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Celebrate National Breakfast Month

Who knew breakfast would ever be a hard sell? For a gazillion years it was a no-brainer. Humans need breakfast to launch the day. With National Better Breakfast Month off to a good start, here are some top picks for eating breakfast as the anchor of all things healthy, wealthy and wise.

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For those who “just want a few more minutes of sleep,” prep ahead. Mix Crockpot® Apple Cinnamon Steel Cut oats the night before. No half-and-half on hand? Sub ½ cup 2% milk plus 3 teaspoons melted unsalted butter.

Pre-mix the batter like these Overnight waffles (photo above) or the dry ingredients for pancakes.

If you need gluten-free, don’t miss this great recipe! (Good Morning Pancakes)

Pre-bake and freeze and re-heat Quick Granola Breakfast rolls, waffles, or hand-held
hot pocket sandwiches or a cousin called bierocks

Last but not least, fresh-from-the-bread-machine bread with peanut butter, oranges and milk!

If you’re a teacher or student, expand the learning AND breakfast options.   Once a week offer a Breakfast Club with your classroom. Here’s how one middle school did so with a Life Skills class. School Nutrition Association’s SmartBrief Sept. 6, 2016,

Two resources to check out include

If you’re draggin’ long before lunch even when you eat breakfast, something’s not right. There’s breakfast and there’s grabbing an energy beverage, soda, coffee or candy bar. Get in balance with some good guidance like The Wheat Foods Council
Back-to-Breakfast Tool Kit of research-based recipes, blog posts and tweets.

 

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