Last week we tried making some Christmas candy together. I found a recipe for butter mints, but since we had no mint or peppermint extract, we made orange and lemon and maple instead.
I assumed the two older boys would be the ones to jump in an help, but it was actually Anselm that stuck with me through the whole process. He is very keen on helping, that one. If there is work going on, he is usually the first there. This is true for baking as well as home repair an renovation projects. He’s not too keen on cleaning, though.
Butter, powdered sugar, flavoring, a little heavy cream, and food coloring was all we needed. I love recipes that don’t require any more than what I keep around the house, anyways. We used this recipe.
Letting kids handle mixers is kind of terrifying for me, but I let them do it anyways. (Everyone except Elvie and Eldore, that is.) Although they will all tell you (with gruesome detail) what will happen to your fingers if they get stuck in the beaters. I am pretty emphatic about that.
Everyone joined in kneading in the food coloring, though Elvie got to keep her own little bit as she had a bad habit of licking her fingers while kneading. I had a feeling she would do that, so I only gave her a tiny piece to work with. She didn’t seem to mind.
You can’t take pictures around here without at least one photobomb.
We rolled the lemon and orange together to make “stanks” as Elvie says (that’s “snakes” to the rest of us). What a little table of perfectionists bemoaned their imperfect snakes! These kinds of activities are good for all of us. But we survived, and cut the snakes into little twisted orange-and-lemon pieces, and then set them in the (cold) oven to dry.
Once everyone was over the activity, I quickly made a batch of maple candies, then (mostly) lovingly reminded everyone that now that the fun was over, we still had to clean up.