Cook with the kids

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Half-term means no school run, a chance to spend more time with the kids and, of course, coming up with various activities to keep them entertained for the week. Given that the ever changeable British weather may not perk up until they're back at school and the sun may only pop its head out briefly, it's always a good idea to have a plan to burn up all that young energy and make sure you can still enjoy an evening with your feet up.

Getting your little ones into the kitchen may be daunting (images of flour everywhere and a sticky mess that doesn't resemble a cake come to mind) but letting them don aprons and wield wooden spoons is a great way to introduce them to cooking.

Plan an indoor picnic. Set out a blanket in the living room or wherever you have room and settle down to a picnic style lunch. You can supervise in the kitchen while the children cook up Mini Burgers and Paper Wrapped Quiches. Help them bake Shortbread Wands for a sweet treat afterwards.

Going out for afternoon tea can be expensive and organising your brood into action can be a tricky business. Making it at home can be much more fun. Whip up some simple Scones, Cream Cheese Sandwiches and Raspberry Cakes for your own slice of English tradition. Set up a table with a lovely tablecloth and drink from china cups, if you're feeling brave (the kids can substitute tea with orange juice).

At the end of the week help the children cook their favourite dish like Spaghetti Bolognese or Chicken and Mushroom Pot Pies to demonstrate what they've learnt and sit down as a family to enjoy a meal together and celebrate a fun-filled week... you never know, they might even want to use their new found cooking skills regularly, whilst you sit back and admire your handiwork.

Do you have any favourite recipes to get your kids cooking? Share your ideas below...

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