Little one’s play: Yotam Ottolenghi’s recipes for cooking with children

I used to assume that cooking with youngsters – a minimum of youthful ones – should contain a foolproof plan that completely can’t be deviated from. Since having my very own youngsters, I’ve realised how flawed I used to be. Palms-on, messy and inventive environments are a pure habitat for little palms and imaginative minds. The very best factor to do is give youngsters a platform to work from, permitting them to embellish, dot, splatter and layer as they please (aprons and outdated T-shirts are extremely advisable). This creates a way of possession and accomplishment, making children extra inclined to eat what they’ve made.

Pizza pinwheels (pictured prime)

These are cherished by adults and children alike, as a snack or occasion meals. Be at liberty to make them your individual through the use of your individual selection of herbs, greens and cheese. And pass over the chorizo if you wish to preserve it meat-free, or substitute with different cured meats.

Prep 20 min
Cook dinner 1 hr
Makes 12

1 spherical sheet puff pastry, roughly 30cm in diameter (230g)
four tomatoes, roughly grated and skins discarded (250g internet weight)
2 tbsp tomato paste
1½ tsp dried oregano
2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
Salt and black pepper
100g mozzarella block, roughly grated
30g parmesan, finely grated
80g dried chorizo, chopped into 1cm cubes
four tbsp basil leaves, thinly sliced

Lay a sheet of greaseproof paper barely bigger than the puff pastry on a piece floor and place the pastry on prime.

In a small bowl, mix 50g grated tomato (a few quarter) with the tomato paste, oregano, half the garlic, an eighth of a teaspoon of salt and an excellent grind of pepper. Unfold this evenly over the puff pastry, leaving a 1½cm rim throughout the sting. Sprinkle the sauce evenly with the mozzarella, two-thirds of the parmesan, the chorizo and three-quarters of the basil. Gently roll up the puff pastry, so you find yourself with an extended, compact, sausage-shaped roll. Elevate up the greaseproof paper base, switch the roll to the fridge and chill for 20 minutes, to agency up barely. In the meantime, warmth the oven to 185C (175C fan)/385F/gasoline 5½.

Trim off and discard 1½cm from every finish of the roll, then lower the “sausage” into 12 even slices about 1½-2cm thick. Rigorously switch the slices to a big baking tray lined with greaseproof paper, conserving them effectively aside, then press down gently on every slice with the palm of your hand. Sprinkle over the remaining parmesan, and bake for 20 minutes, or till golden.

In the meantime, in a small bowl combine the remaining grated tomato with the remainder of the garlic and basil, a quarter-teaspoon of salt and an excellent grind of pepper.

Eat the pinwheels heat or at room temperature, with the recent tomato sauce alongside.

Rainbow-layered bean dip

The inspiration for this snack is the American seven-layer dip. It permits youngsters to make their very own mixture in particular person glasses or bowls, leaving out any dreaded – “yucky” – greens.

Yotam Ottolenghi’s rainbow-layered bean dip

Prep 30 min
Cook dinner 30 min
Serves eight as a snack

For the black beans
60ml olive oil
1 tomato, roughly chopped (100g)
1 tsp floor cumin
1 tsp garlic granules
1 tsp onion granules
2 x 400g tins black beans, drained (480g internet weight)
Salt and pepper
For the guacamole
2 ripe avocados, skins and pip eliminated (220g)
1-2 tbsp coriander leaves, roughly chopped
2 tbsp lime juice
Salt and pepper

For the yoghurt
150g Greek-style yoghurt
1 tbsp lime juice

For the toppings
2 tomatoes, finely chopped
½ purple onion, finely chopped
1 small orange pepper, finely chopped
1 small yellow pepper, finely chopped
150g feta, finely crumbled
1-2 tbsp coriander leaves, roughly chopped
three spring onions, trimmed and finely chopped
¾ tsp floor cumin
Corn tortilla chips (blue or yellow), to serve

Put all of the bean substances in a medium saucepan with 150ml water, three-quarters of a teaspoon of salt and an excellent grind of pepper. On a medium-high warmth, deliver to a boil, then cook dinner for seven minutes, stirring typically, till the tomato has utterly damaged down and the liquid has decreased by half. Take away from the warmth and use a whisk to interrupt down the beans into a rough mash. Switch to a bowl.

Make the guacamole by mashing collectively the avocado, coriander, lime juice, a 3rd of a teaspoon of salt and an excellent grind of pepper in a medium bowl. Use a fork to create a easy mash.

In a small bowl, whisk the yoghurt, lime juice and an eighth of a teaspoon of salt. Put all of the toppings in separate bowls.

Assemble in glasses or bowls, beginning with a layer of bean dip and constructing it as you want, including the guacamole, yoghurt and any of the toppings (or not). Serve with the tortilla chips to dip in.


Brigadeiros are Brazilian condensed-milk sweets which can be served at events and particular events. They’re a brilliant deal with to make, and it’s simple to get little folks concerned in stirring and rolling the sweets within the toppings. Right here, I’ve added some crushed-up biscuits to provide them extra texture and a dangerously moreish attraction.

Yotam Ottolenghi’s brigadeiros

Yotam Ottolenghi’s brigadeiros

Prep 5 min
Chill 90 min
Cook dinner 30 min
Makes 18

75g petit beurre biscuits (ie about 9 biscuits), roughly damaged in half
1 x 397g tin condensed milk
four tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
20g unsalted butter
2½ tbsp water
¾ tsp flaked sea salt

For the toppings
15g cocoa powder
20g rainbow sprinkles
20g chocolate sprinkles
40g pistachios, finely chopped

Put the biscuits in a sandwich bag and use a rolling pin evenly to bash them into a rough crumble.

Put the condensed milk, cocoa powder, butter, water and salt in a medium saucepan and cook dinner on a medium-high warmth, whisking repeatedly, till the combination begins to bubble. Flip down the warmth to medium-low and keep on cooking for 10-12 minutes, stirring repeatedly with a spatula, till the combination is thick, shiny and pulling away from the perimeters of the pan. Take away from the warmth and stir within the crushed biscuits. Shortly switch to a shallow dish, depart to chill barely, then refrigerate to set for a minimum of 90 minutes.

Use a small spoon to scoop out a few of the combination, then roll it into small balls together with your palms, roughly 20-25g in dimension; you must find yourself with 18 in complete.

Put all of the toppings into particular person little bowls, then roll the balls into every of the totally different toppings, to coat. Eat at room temperature or refrigerate for later.