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Favourite Cookery Recipes

Basic Biscuit Recipe

175g/6oz Plain Flour
100g/4oz Butter or Margarine
50g/2oz Caster Sugar

Pre-heat oven to 150°C/300°F Gas 2

Cream the butter or margarine and caster sugar together until they are light and fluffy. Stir in the flour and once mixed knead the dough together until it forms a ball, add a sprinkle of flour if the dough is at all sticky.

Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface until it is about 5mm thick.

Cut out the dough using your chosen cutter.

Place the biscuits on a floured baking tray and bake in the centre of the oven for 25 minutes or until golden brown.

Let the biscuits cool on a wire tray before decorating.

Bunny biscuitCat biscuit

BiscuitsPirate biscuit

Biscuits can be cut out using cutters or for a special shape a paper pattern can be made, placed on the rolled out dough and cut around.  The biscuits can then be left plain or decorated as desired with icing and sweets etc.

Halloween Biscuits

By using the recipe shown above you can make some biscuits for Halloween.

You will need extra to the ingredients above, yellow or orange boiled sweets, and baking parchment.

Roll out the biscuit dough and using either a plain round cutter or a cup cut out some circular shapes.
Cut out a triangle from both the top and bottom of the circles to make a pumpkin shape and then cut out eyes, nose and mouth, (as shown).

Crush the boiled sweets, you may need to put them into a small plastic bag and use a rolling pin  or small hammer to crush them into small pieces.
Put a piece of parchment paper onto a baking tray and then place the dough shapes on top, then fill the eyes, nose and mouth with crushed sweets.

Bake in the centre of the oven for 25 minutes until golden brown and the crushed sweets have melted to fill in the eyes.
Caution. Leave biscuits to cool on the tray as the sweets are hot when molten.

Pumpkin biscuitHalloween biscuits

Pumpkin piePumpkin Pie

Shortcrust Pastry
(using the following quantities)

7 oz (200g) Plain Flour
3½oz (100g) Half butter or margarine and half lard
And about 6 tsp. of cold water

3 Eggs, separated
15oz (425g) can of pumpkin or fresh pumpkin *
8 fl oz (225 ml) of evaporated milk
8oz (225g) caster sugar
1 level tsp of ground cinnamon
½ level tsp ground ginger
¼ level tsp of nutmeg
¼ level tsp of salt

Whipped or pouring cream for serving

Preparing fresh pumpkin

To steam the pumpkin

Wash and cut the pumpkin into bite size pieces.
Peel off the skin and remove pith and seeds. Place the pumpkin in a steamer above boiling water and cover with a tight fitting lid.

Steam for about 20-30 minutes until tender. Use the pumpkin as required.

Make the pastry by rubbing the butter/margarine and lard into the flour until it resemble bread crumbs. Gradually add the water whilst mixing with a flat blade knife until it all comes together into a ball. Set aside in a cool place while you make the filling.

Mash the steamed pumpkin until it resembles a puree and then add the other ingredients whisking them together.

Roll out the pastry and line a pie dish, bake this in the oven at , 190C/375 F/Gas 5 until golden brown, about 15-20 mins. Pour in the pumpkin mixture and return to the oven at 180C/350F/Gas 4 for approx 35 mins until the top has browned slightly but the mixture remain very slightly wobbly. Leave to cool before serving.

Chocolate Truffles

2oz (50 g) Butter or hard margarine
2oz (50g) Cocoa powder
4oz (100g) Icing sugar

Press the ingredients together with the back of a spoon, this takes a while but eventually the mixture comes together and gradually changes colour.

Then add your choice of flavouring.

1tsp vanilla essence   (for chocolate flavour)

1tsp camp coffee   (for coffee flavour)

1tsp rum flavouring   (for rum flavour)


Roll small amounts of the mixture into small balls and then cover them by rolling in either, desiccated coconut, hundreds and thousands or vermicelli.

Cover and leave to dry for 24 hours.

Truffle hedgehogs

Using the recipe on the left, make the truffles using vanilla essence. Truffle hedgehog

Roll a small amount of the mixture into a ball and then pinch a nose shape in one side of the ball. Flatten the bottom of the ball by gently pressing down onto a flat surface.

Using chocolate buttons cut into quarters push the rounded end of the buttons into the truffle leaving the spiky ends protruding to give the effect of spines. Small broken bits of chocolate can be used for eyes and the end of the nose.

As before these are better left to dry out for 24 hours.

Basic Pancake Batter

4oz (100g) Plain Flour
Pinch of saltLemons
1 Large egg
½ pint (10 fl oz)(275 ml) milk

Sift the flour and the salt into a large bowl. Make a hollow in the centre of the flour and drop in the slightly beaten egg and half the milk. Start mixing the flour into the liquid preferably using a whisk, you can use a spoon or a fork. Make sure to incorporate all the flour, once this is done, pour in the rest of the milk and whisk until the mixture has the consistency of thin cream.

Using a heavy- based shallow frying pan, heat a little lard, just enough to grease the pan so that the pancake batter doesn't stick. The pan should be quite hot before you pour the batter in. Pour in enough batter to make a thin film over the base of the pin, tilting the pan in all directions will help to get an even thickness. The underside of the pancake should be golden brown in less than a minute, you can adjust the heat to get this just right. Flip the pancake over using a spatula or if you're brave toss the pancake in the air by flicking your wrist as you move the pan away. Cook the other side of the pancake until golden brown.

Pancakes can be served in many different ways, the simplest way is to turn the pancake out onto a plate with kitchen roll on that has been sprinkled with sugar. Sprinkle more sugar and  squeeze some lemon juice on the top of the pancake and either roll or fold. You can also add a spoonful of jam before folding.


Chocolate Nests

Chocolate nest cakesBlock of cooking chocolate (Milk or Plain)

Shredded Wheat

Sugar Coated mini eggs

Small cake paper cases.


Break the chocolate into small pieces and place in a bowl. The chocolate now needs to  melt so you can either put the bowl in a low oven, or rest the bowl over another bowl of hot water, and leave until all the chocolate has melted.

Once melted give the chocolate a good stir and start to add some of the crumbled Shredded Wheat, add enough to give a twiggy effect to the chocolate.

Spoon enough of the mixture into one of the paper cases to make a nest shape, leaving a hollow in the middle, big enough to place about 4 mini eggs in. You can either put the eggs in straight away and they will stick to the hardening chocolate or wait until the nest has set. Remove the nest from the paper case when the nest is finished.


Mini Christmas Cakes

This recipe is enough to make about 12 small cakes made in small baked bean tins. It can be made in a 10" square large tin and be cut to make smaller cakes.


9oz Plain Flour
6oz Brown Sugar
2oz Caster Sugar
6 Eggs
8oz Butter (room temperature)
I tbls Black treacle
1 tsp Vanilla essence
2 Tbls of Brandy(Optional)
Juice of a lemon

Preheat Oven at 150ºC/200ºF Gas Mark 2

Mini Christmas cake2lb Mixed Fruit
4-6oz Glace Cherries (chopped and folded into 1oz Plain flour)
2-4oz Almonds (Optional)

For Decoratio



You will need to collect 12 small Baked bean or similar small can and wash thoroughly. If the can has had a pull tab on it you will have been left with a small rim so you  need to cut out the bottom of the can. Turn the can upside down and the bottom will now rest on the rim around the top, like a normal cake tin.( Be careful as the can bottom is likely to be sharp).

Line each can as you would a normal cake tin using greaseproof paper, making the side paper come up 5cm/2" above the sides of the cans.

Place the Black Treacle in a bowl to warm in the oven.


Using a wooden spoon, cream the butter and both the sugars until the mixture is light and fluffy. Gradually add the beaten eggs a little at a time and then add the combined sifted flour and spices, beating well to make sure that everything is combined.

Now add all the fruit, cherries and almonds (if including) and stir well, then add the final ingredients, the warmed treacle, vanilla essence, juice of the lemon and the brandy, again stir well.

Spoon the mixture into the cans, there should be enough for 12 cans. Place the cans on the middle shelf of the pre-heated oven. Cook for approximately 1½hrs. Check after an hour, (as the cakes are small and ovens vary it is worth checking on them after an hour)


Snail Sandwiches

A slice of bread, white or brown
Choice of filling (something that you will be able to spread, e.g. jam or cheese spread)
Small pieces of carrot or liquorice

Snail sandwiches
Trim the crusts off the bread and then spread your chosen filling so that it covers one side of the slice completely. Carefully roll up the bread until you have a log shape, which you can then slice into pieces about 2-3cm thick. Stand the spirals of bread on their sides with the edge of the bread just poking out from the bottom, as shown above, you can then add some small pieces of either carrot or liquorice to make the stalks for the eyes.

Place the snails on a bed of chopped up lettuce.

Small Cakes

small cakesSmall decorated cakes

These easy to make little cakes can be decorated in lots of different ways.

Makes 12 - 14 cakes

6oz/175g Self raising flour
4oz/100g  Soft margarine
4oz/100g Caster sugar
2 large eggs

Preheat Oven at 375ºF/190ºC Gas Mark 5


You will also need some small cake tins and small cake cases.

Put all of the ingredients into a bowl and using either an electric mixer or by hand, mix them all together thoroughly for at least 2 minutes until the mixture is light and creamy.

Put the paper cases into the tins and then divide the mixture equally between them.

Bake in the centre of the oven for 15 - 20 minutes, the cakes when cooked should be golden in colour and just firm to the touch.

Remove the cakes from the tins and leave to cool on  a wire tray.

Butterfly cakes

Butter cream

1oz/25g  Butter or margarine
2oz/50g Icing sugar
(Mix together until creamy)

Slice off the top of the cake about 1cm in from the paper case, cut the circle of cake in half to make the wings and put to one side.

Put a teaspoonful of butter cream on top of 
the cake where the slice has been removed 
and then place the wings on the butter cream so that they are lifted up each side to resemble a butterfly.

Small pieces of liquorice can be added for the body and the

Iced tops

Icing sugar and water

Mix up some icing sugar with a small amount of water and required colouring  until it becomes fairly runny, but not too runny or the icing won't set.

Cut off the top of the cake so that it is flat just below the edge of the paper case. Cover the cake in the chosen icing and decorate as required using sweets, liquorice, chocolate bits etc. 

Pumpkin Soup

Pumpkin soup

1lb/400g Pumpkin flesh (after it has been peeled and the seeds scooped out)
You will probably need a pumpkin that weighs about 3lb/1.2kg
1 Large onion peeled and chopped
8oz/200g Peeled potatoes
1½ pints/850ml of Vegetable stock
½ pint/275ml Milk
2oz/50g Butter
Salt and freshly ground pepper to season
Optional carton of double cream.


In a large saucepan cook the chopped onion in the butter until it
becomes soft and transparent.
Cut the pumpkin flesh into small chunks and add to the saucepan along with the potatoes. Cover the pan and cook slowly for 20 minutes until the vegetables are soft.
Add the stock, milk, and the salt and pepper and bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes.
Liquidize the soup until it becomes a purée then pour back into the pan and simmer without boiling.
A swirl of cream can be added to the soup as it is served.

Fruit Crumble (4-5 small dishes) fruit crumble

4oz/100g SR Flour
2oz/50g Margarine
1oz/25g Granulated Sugar
2 Medium cooking apples
Caster sugar to sweeten the fruit
Small foil dishes

If you are able to pick some blackberries with the children they can be added to the apple for a more tasty and colourful filling.
(other fruit can be used such as peaches, raspberries etc)

To make the crumble, rub the margarine into the flour, the children cwill enjoy taking turns in doing this. Add the granulated sugar and stir until it is well mixed and then set to one side.

Prepare the apples by peeling and cutting them into small pieces, letting the children help where appropriate. If using blackberries, wash thoroughly before adding to the apples.

Fill each foil case ¾ full with the apple and blackberries and then sprinkle with a heaped teaspoonful of caster sugar. Cover the fruit with the crumble mix and press down gently.

Cook at 180°C for 20 minutes or until crumble is golden brown.

Care should be taken when taking the dishes out of the oven as the fruit juice may bubble at the edges and become very hot.


PizzaPizza dough mix (Packet dough where just water is added - in the UK Sainsburys sell their own brand Italian pizza base mix)
Tomato puree or chopped tomatoes
A choice of toppings as suggested below:

To make the base follow the instructions on the packet - this usually means adding water to the powder mix and then kneading into a dough on a floured area. Once the dough has come together the children can be given a small piece each and shown how to stretch and pull the dough for a few minutes. The children can then form the dough into a flat roundish shape, by flattening with their palms. The dough needs to be put in a warm place for 10 minutes on a greased and floured tray or non-stick baking paper, during which time the toppings can be prepared.

If working with a small group of 4/5 children they can help prepare the toppings by peeling the mushrooms, cutting the ham, pineapple etc and grating the cheese with an appropriate amount of help. Obviously care must be taken with knives and graters.

When the dough has rested then let the children spread either tomato puree or chopped tomato on their pizza base and then add their choice of topping.

Cook as stated on the packet usually about 15/20 minutes at 220°C until cheese is golden brown.

Remove from oven and leave to cool.