Last year, my nephew, Ethan (we call him Quique), was left with me for a half hour while his parents ran errands. Because I loved making cookies when I was little, I took it upon myself to make chocolate chip cookies with him.
Since he was only 3 years old and couldn’t easily reach the kitchen counter, I prepared a nice cookie-mixing area by spreading newspapers on the floor.
He poured all the ingredients in the large mixing bowl — taste-testing each as they went in — and even helped mix up the dough. We both had such a fun time that I decided to do it again.
This time, my 3-year-old niece Emma — we call her Mimi — wanted to help. I’m glad she did. It was even more fun with two little ones in on the cookie creating.
The best part about baking or cooking alongside children is the wonder that happens when they see the transformation from a drab ingredient like flour into food they love. Plus, little kids are just plain funny.
This recipe for Butterscotch Spoonoodles or Butterscotch Bird’s Nest Cookies is nice for hot days, because no oven is needed. You’ll want to make sure an adult is helping, though, for the short stove use.
1 can (5 ounces) chow mein noodles
1 cup coarsely chopped nuts (optional)
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 package (11 ounces) butterscotch chips
Combine noodles and nuts (if using) in a mixing bowl. Set aside. Combine honey, sugar, butter, vanilla and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Add butterscotch chips and stir until melted and smooth. Pour over noodles and nuts. Mix gently until well coated. Drop by spoonfuls onto waxed paper. Let stand or chill until firm.
Yield: 32 (unless you’re making big ones for Papa)
Rochelle Feil blogs regularly about food in her Nosh On blog on wenatcheeworld.com.