Puff cups with mango yogurt

Get cooking with kids: part 5

Originally appeared in the March 29, 2012 edition of the Southside Times.

“Don’t judge a book by its cover”—it’s a noble lesson that many parents try to instill in their children; but putting this concept into practice proves to be quite difficult when it comes to food.

For this final installment in our little series geared toward little-ones, I thought it appropriate to offer a dessert.  I entertained several notions before settling on the idea that kids love pudding; and though my mind briefly landed on some sort of custard, I instantly thought about the caloric content and decided to drop it.  Then I realized: it’s all about how you dress it up.

Leaving the knife-work to the grownups (along with extraction of the lighting-hot sheetpan from the oven), the remainder of the procedure is kid-friendly.  You can find puff pastry—a flaky dough that contains many striated layers of butter—in the freezer sections of local grocery chains, and kids enjoy using round cutters to cut-out the shapes.  Though I’ve recommended using mango as the fruit component, it really your call.  The possibilities aren’t necessarily endless, but they’re mind-numbingly abundant.  You don’t have to change the book, but you can certainly change the rules.

 

Puff cups with mango yogurt

Serves 4 – 6

  • 1 sheet of puff pastry, thawed
  • As needed, 1 large egg broken and scrambled (for eggwash)
  • 1 ½ cups low fat vanilla yogurt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons zero calorie sugar substitute
  • 2 tablespoons chopped dried mango (or fruit of choice)

1.  Preheat standard oven to 400 degrees.  Meanwhile, prepare eggwash in a bowl and set aside.  In a large bowl, combine yogurt, sugar substitute, and chopped fruit; reserve in fridge.  Using a large circle cutter or biscuit cutter, cut a circle shape from the dough and place on a parchment-lined sheeptan.  Do one for each cup.  Now, use the same cutter to cut another set (you should have two sets now); and this time, using a slightly smaller cutter, cut another circle.  So what you should have are a set of solid round discs, and a set of donut-shaped discs.

2.  Brush a bit of eggwash around the sides of the solid disc, and set the dough with the hole in it on top.  What will happen is the top portion will puff up, leaving a small cavity for the filling.  Brush top of puff pastry with remaining eggwash, and place in the oven.  Allow to puff up to golden brown (about 10 – 12 minutes).  Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before filling with flavored yogurt.

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Published in: on March 29, 2012 at 5:31 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Chicken, blue cheese, and prosciutto pinwheels

Get Cooking with Kids: Part 1

Originally appeared in the March 1, 2012 edition of the Southside Times.

The title of this week’s column is no mistake.  Today’s installment marks a five-week series of the same name.  Why?  Well, to honest—it was my wife’s idea.  (And like so many of her novel notions, I had no problem with appropriating the premise for myself.)  Plus, it just sounded fun.

My 18-month-old daughter’s current culinary skill level falls between simply playing with a finished food product, or meticulously composing some sort of Pollack-like masterpiece on the tray of her highchair.  Jackson, on the other hand, is 7 years old, and often eagerly (and quite capably) fills the role of my pint-sized sous chef.  Read more here: (more…)

Spinach artichoke dip

Take this dip for a “spin”

Originally appeared in the February 9, 2012 edition of the Southside Times.

Dips can be questionable.  We’ve all been there:  a casserole dish, wreathed with crispy chips, is filled with what looks like a delicious mixture; yet what you discover is not some savory creation, but rather a suspicious cream cheese concoction or a crock of molten mayonnaise.  Many of these dips are afterthoughts—people literally dump a few ingredients together in the name of saving time.  Read more: (more…)

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Published in: on November 25, 2011 at 12:53 am  Leave a Comment