Joyful Jewish

Posts Tagged ‘You can eat this!

Last Tu Bishvat, I organised a snack activity to tie in with the theme of the Seven Species, “shivat haMinim”.  These are the grains and fruits listed in the Torah as being special products of Eretz Yisrael, the land of Israel: “a land of wheat and barley, and vines and fig-trees and pomegranates; a land of olive-trees and (date) honey”.

Seven species biscuit

It’s not so easy to combine all these species into one child-friendly snack, so I cheated slightly by replacing olives with almonds (as almond trees blossom in Israel around the time of Tu Bishvat) and gluing the lot together with chocolate icing.  It was delicious!!   (We also offered the kids bread with olive oil for dipping, so no species was missed out.)

All you need is a packet of Malt biscuits (which contain both wheat and barley)

Malt biscuit

and some chopped up fruit (specifically: dates, dried figs, pomegranate seeds and sultanas) and slivered almonds

Date, fig, pomegranate, sultana & almonds

and a quantity of home-made chocolate icing (or something similar) to hold the fruit and nuts in place.

Spread the biscuit with chocolate icing, load up with date, fig, pomegranate, sultanas and almonds – some of the kids even made little pictures out of their toppings – and eat!  This was so quick and easy to organise, and so popular, I can guarantee we’ll be doing it again.

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I can’t claim any credit for this recipe – it came from Kveller and you can find it here.  But it is fantastic. I made it last week and not only did I feel like some sort of kitchen goddess for producing something so awesome, but also everyone who ate it loved it.  I am sure you will get lots of compliments too!

I doubled the recommended amounts of cinnamon and cardamom and it was still quite subtle, so if you like that kind of flavour, don’t be afraid to add a bit more.

B’tei avon!

 

My 5 year old daughter can’t remember where she just put her shoes 10 minutes ago, but she has an impeccable memory when it comes to food.  Despite me not having even thought about it, as soon as Sukkot arrived she promptly reminded me of the need to purchase biscuits and lollies (a.k.a. cookies and candy) to make edible sukkot!

As you will see from a quick Image search for edible sukkot on Google, the possibilities are quite varied – sweet or savoury; simple or decorated; mostly healthy or dentist’s nightmare.  Most of them are stuck together with icing (frosting) but that’s too complicated and messy for really small kids who just want to build their own.

Last year our biggest challenge was getting the walls to stay upright.  As you can see here:

This year, I figured it out.  If the walls are thicker, they will stand up by themselves.  Thick, flat-sided wafer biscuits = success!  We used some that are almost square, but if you can only get smaller ones you might be able to stack them like bricks.  No more screams of anguish as yet another wall collapses before the roof can go on!

Unfortunately due to the last minute nature of my shopping, I was not able to track down any stick-like biscuits for the roof (pretzels here only seem to come in the curly variety not straight) but last year we used Pocky sticks, which I developed a taste for when I lived in Japan.  This year we used shortbread fingers, which gave our sukkot a rather solid look.  I’ll be back to something thinner next year.

Next year I wonder if I could thread some Froot Loops onto the Pocky sticks before putting them on the roof??  Hmmm, might need to test that theory out sooner than next Sukkot!

A couple of years ago, I purchased a bunch of Jewish cookie cutters.  They are great, and we now have a family tradition of making Torah shaped biscuits for Simchat Torah.

Last year we decorated our biscuits with sprinkles.

This year we tried a new thing – imprinting a magen david onto the dough before baking it.  I had never done this before but was very happy with how they looked, especially as the recipe I used didn’t turn out exactly as I had hoped.  The good news is – they were still absolutely delicious!!


Fun crafts and activities for Jewish families with young children

A resource site for anyone who wants to share the joy of being Jewish with the children in their life.

Enjoy!