|Homemade Marshmallow Eggs|
|Sugar Cookie "Eggs"|
Last Sunday the kids at our church held a bakesale to support the relief in Japan. As I am always ready to jump at an idea that is both worthy in cause and creativity, I was all over this. I know that a "better" mom would have asked the kids what they wanted to do to contribute but I'm sorry to tell you that I don't work that way. My husband and I discussed what we were willing to to (since we'd be doing the bulk of the work anyway) and brought the kids in for important decisions like choosing the color of sprinkles and handwriting the tags. I love to create, but I really don't have lots of patience.
So, now that you know I'm a design-nazi mom, you can really appreciate the effort (and future therapy bills for my kids) put into these projects.
Homemade Marshmallow "Peeps"
This was actually my darling husband's idea. He's been into making homemade marshmallows (his day job is producing gelato so he's quite a creative foodie) and I thought it was brilliant. I'm not a fan of Peeps (I'd much prefer some nice crispy onion rings) but my kids love them, and I appreciate not filling them with all those awful chemicals used in the store-bought ones. This recipe is particularly good because it doesn't use high fructose corn syrup.
Making marshmallows is really rather easy. Start with a batch using the recipe here. Prepare a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper, then a light dusting of sifted powdered sugar, and spread the soft marshmallow mixture on top of that. Ours was about 3/4" thick. Sprinkle bands of colored sanding sugar on the mixture, covering all the white completely. This was a great job for the kids, so little N helped me with that. Let the mixture set and once firm, use a cookie cutter to create the shapes. I know you're thinking now, "Hey, you called these homemade Peeps and I didn't actually see any chicks in your pictures!" You are correct. The cute little chick cutter wasn't working with our marshmallow mix; the beaks and feet kept breaking off. And since I was going for beauty here, I decided to let the kids eat those ones. Once the shape is removed from the sheet, cover the edges with more sanding sugar and set aside for packaging.
I placed 2 eggs in a clear plastic sleeve (link here) and put a cute stamped sticker on top. This was mainly because I thought it was easier to handle and sell at the bakesale. They would be really nice on a plate with some other treats, or also great as a decoration on a cake!
Easter Egg Sugar Cookies
Since the "Peeps" were kind of involved, I wanted to keep the next baked good simple. My kids love these sugar cookies covered with pastel M&Ms. I make them at Christmas with red and green M&Ms and they look like ornaments. A good basic sugar cookie recipe is here. Roll the dough in the M&M's and bake as directed.