Spending time in the kitchen is therapeutic for me, and it's a pleasure I always wanted to pass on in my family.
Enter two sons, both ''all-boy,'' multi-sport athletes. So imagine my glee when my older son, who is 14, started to take an interest in cooking.
It started simply when he and his brother wanted to help me roll out the dough for Christmas cookies. As he's grown, it has expanded to basic things like scrambling eggs and whipping up mac and cheese.
Marshmallow Puffs, a recipe used in Austintown Middle School’s “Skills for Life”?class, offered an opportunity for the kids to take charge in the kitchen.
At his school, Austintown Middle School, every student is required to take at least two courses which the district aptly calls ''Skills for Life.'' It's much like the home economics course I, probably like many of you, took in high school many years ago.
Over the past two years, Anthony has taken great pride in learning the ''proper'' terms for cooking methods and utensils, along with the right way to do things in the kitchen. (He now takes great pleasure in correcting me when I tend to ''eyeball'' measurements for ingredients or crack eggs with one hand!)
Today's recipe, Marshmallow Puffs, is one that Anthony and his class originally made in school. He was so pleased with the way it turned out, he wanted to repeat the dessert at home. He pestered me relentlessly to ensure I had purchased all the ingredients and then was adamant that I step aside. He was taking over the kitchen.
1 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3-4 crescent rolls
3-4 large marshmallows
1 tbsp melted butter
1 tbsp chopped walnuts (optional)
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp milk
1 or 2 drops vanilla
Preheat oven to 375. Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Separate the dough into single triangles. Dip marshmallow completely in melted butter, then roll in cinnamon-sugar mixture.
Place each marshmallow on the wide end of a triangle and fold corners of the roll over marshmallow and roll to the point. Dip point side in butter.
Place buttered-side up in a greased muffin tin. Place tin on a cookie sheet during baking. (We used a baking stone and no tin, which worked perfectly.)
Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown. Immediately remove from cupcake or muffin tin.
Combine the icing ingredients in small mixing bowl. Stir until smooth.
Drizzle with icing and sprinkle with nuts if desired. Serve warm.
It was my pleasure to sit back and watch him work, and despite being tempted, I stayed out of the fray.
He was right: the puffs were simple and tasty.
But even more delightful than the puffs was the chance to share with my son the joy of spending time together in the kitchen.