WITH the Easter school vacation coming to an end and online classes continuing at home for all students except those who returned last term, there will always be the need to provide more munchies at home!
It’s easy to buy an array of fast foods and snacks to keep them happy, but remember you don’t want to change their tastes to include higher sodium and sugar levels.
An easy way to help this situation is by preparing easy and delicious light meals and snacks at home. This way you can enjoy the best of both worlds, your children will be well nourished and when the time dictates, you can enjoy a free day once in a while by allowing them to have a store-bought, guilt-free treat.
Cheesy tomato quesadillas
8 flour tortilla, 8 inches in diameter
1 14-oz can Hunts diced tomatoes
4 cups grated cheese, preferably cheddar
1 red onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper cut into small dice
½ cup jalapeno peppers, sliced
⅓ cup chopped chadon beni
Preheat your broiler on your stove, or a large frying pan.
Line the baking tray.
Lay the tortilla onto a baking tray or the frying pan.
Now cover half of it with cheese, onion, peppers and chadon beni.
Place under the broiler, when the cheese starts to melt flip the uncovered portion over onto the melted cheese.
Broil for a few minutes more until crisp.
Or, place over medium heat on stove top, then flip when cheese melts.
Remove and cut.
Red velvet whoopie pies
¼ cup butter, room temperature
1 cup brown sugar
4 tbs vegetable oil
1 tbs red food colouring
⅔ cup plain yoghurt
4 tbs cocoa powder
2 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp Lion baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
Cream ⅔ cups butter with 1lb cream cheese until smooth.
Add about 2½ cups Lotus sifted icing sugar with 2 tbs sour cream, add 1 tsp orange zest.
Pre-heat the oven to 375°F.
Line 3 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add vegetable oil and beat for a few seconds, add the egg and beat until incorporated.
Stir together the food colouring and yoghurt and add to the creamed butter.
Combine cocoa powder, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Add gradually to creamed butter mixture in 3 additions, beginning and ending with dry mix. Do not over mix.
With a small ice-cream scoop, drop cookie dough onto the prepared sheets, about 2 inches apart.
Bake for 8-9 minutes or until the cookies slightly spring back when touched.
Cool on baking sheets for few minutes before moving to cooling racks. Let cool completely before frosting.
Prepare cream cheese frosting.
Pipe a blob of frosting onto the flat portion of one cookie, place another cookie on top flat face down and gently press until frosting comes to edge of cookie.
Makes 12, 3½-inch whoopee pies
Veggie pot pies
4 tbs butter
1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
4 tbs flour
4 cups milk
½ tsp grated nutmeg
½ tsp cayenne pepper
1½ tsp salt
1 lb package of chunky frozen mixed vegetables
⅓ cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tbs chopped fresh celery
2 cups all-purpose four
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup grated cheese
1 tsp freshly-ground black pepper
½ cup chilled butter, cut into cubes
1 cup milk
Preheat oven to 375F
Have buttered and ready 8, 6-oz ramekins, or 6, 8-oz ramekins
Melt butter in a medium saucepan, add garlic and onion, sauté for a few minutes, add flour and stir until mixture becomes somewhat slack in the pot.
Pour in the milk and stir, season with nutmeg, pepper and salt.
Stir or whisk until smooth, cook until mixture becomes thick.
Stir in frozen vegetables, parsley and celery, cook for just one minute more.
Fill the ramekins with the mixture.
Meanwhile make the biscuit topping:
In a mixing bowl place the flour, baking powder, cheese, black pepper and salt.
Add butter and break butter with a pastry blender until the pieces become the size of small peas.
Add the milk and stir gently just to mix.
Spoon this mixture onto the filling in the ramekins.
Bake until golden, about 30 minutes.
Serves 6 to 8
4 cups all-purpose flour
4½ tsp baking powder
1 tbs butter or ghee, softened
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
½ cup butter or ghee to brush while cooking
2 cups water (approx)
Combine flour with one tbs butter, salt, sugar and baking powder.
And water to knead to soft dough, cover and rest for 30 mins.
Divide dough into 6 or 8 pieces, form each piece into a ball (loya).
Let rest 15 minutes, then divide each loya into two and flatten slightly.
Take one loya and roll to about 8-inch thickness, place on tawah, spread about 2 tbs pepper filling onto this, roll out another loya, place on top, apply ghee, flip and apply more ghee. Press gently. Flip. Remove.
Cut into triangles and serve hot. Makes 6 to 8
Pepper roti filling
Peel and boil 4 potatoes, crush and flavour with one tbs roasted, ground cumin, pepper, salt, 4 cloves minced garlic and enough ground fresh hot pepper to taste.
And about 2 tbs minced onion and chadon beni.
Grated carrots may be added.