I have wanted to make soft pretzels for years. Why had I not done it. I don't know. That's just how I am. When I finally got around to it, my son and I had a great time twisting the dough into shapes. He favored numbers, being a math nerd ands all, but we made a few letters, too.
Cooking Fun with Kids
Every parent knows the experience of planning an activity they think will be enjoyable only to have it dissolve through a combination of tantrums, whining, uncooperative behavior (and let's face it, I'm not just referring to the kids!) and frustration. It is an all too common scenario.
What is less common is having an activity in which you place little hope of success but are pleasantly surprised by an enjoyable experience. It just so happens that despite all my pessimism, all the stars were aligned last week when Kiddo and I made soft pretzels. Even New Kid was happily observing it all from his bumpo perch. I guess it is all about expectations.
I was expecting to do it all by myself as Kiddo showed no signs of interest. Until, of course, I involved numbers and counting. (If you are new to this blog you will be unaware that Kiddo obsesses over numbers. If you read regularly, you will be bored by this subject.)
Me, talking out loud to no one in particular: " I am going to divide this dough in half, that makes 2. Then I cut the 2 pieces in half, that makes 4. Hmmm, when I cut 4 pieces in 2, I wonder how many I will have?....."
That got his interest!!
Here Kiddo counts to 16.
He measures 16 inches of dough.
Then, he acts uninterested. I try making pretzel shapes. They come out weird. So I make an 8. "Mommy, make a 1!" After helping me make several more numbers, he started in on the alphabet. Here he is shaping an A.
He also loved brushing the dough with egg whites.And sprinkling on the seeds.Originally the plan was for Daddy-O to take these for snacks in his lunch. They never lasted that long. The recipe says to consume within 3 days. No problem.
Kiddo has even been begging me to do this again. I'll try not to have high expectations.
More cooking with math fun:
- Kitchen geometry
- Cookie Fractions
- Cooking by the book: Strawberry Shortcake
- 10 ways kids can help in the kitchen
UPDATE: I've been asked several times for the recipe. I also put a recipe in the comments below, but here's one for 30 minute homemade soft pretzels.