Hanukkah is just around the corner. A good way to get kids excited about the holiday is with some fun food projects.
Jennifer Cohen, founder of Our Happy Tribe Jewish Family Blog, loves to celebrate Hanukkah by creating happy memories with her family.
“When my girls were little, we had a tradition of having a special activity for each night of Hanukkah, ” Cohen told the Journal.
The night they most looked forward to was donut night. In years past, they made traditional sufganiyot (jelly filled donuts). When Cohen was gifted with a donut baking pan, that became the inspiration of a new way to celebrate Hanukkah: a donut decorating party.
“This is such a fun way to celebrate for grownups and children alike,” Cohen said. “To have your own party, you’ll need donuts. Lots of donuts.”
Cohen likes to use cake mix with her donut baking pan. Each box makes about 24 donuts that need 12 minutes of baking in the oven.
Bake the donuts ahead of time. Then, at the party, your guests can decorate the donuts with delicious toppings and homemade vanilla, chocolate and Hanukkah blue icing.
Note: You can always “practice” with your kids, leading up to the holiday.
“Icings are so easy to make, and extra sweet when you have littles helping you stir all the ingredients together,” she said.
DIY Donut Decorating Party: Icing Recipes
1 cup powdered sugar
3 Tbsp heavy cream
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Homemade Chocolate Icing
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
4 Tbsp warm heavy cream (It needs to be warm to give the chocolate glaze a beautiful shiny gloss)
Homemade Hanukkah Blue Icing
Stir some of the vanilla icing and blue natural food coloring until combined.
“Hanukkah celebrations wouldn’t be complete without dreidels,” Cohen said. “One of our favorite ways to celebrate is with a dreidel food craft.”
Cohen’s daughters named these treats “dreidel kisses,” because they’re made with a (chocolate) kiss.
“No matter how old my girls get, I love making these each year,” Cohen said. “They’re the very first “baking” activity we ever did together to celebrate Hanukkah.”
DIY Edible Dreidels (or Dreidel Kisses)
Frosting (see recipes above)
Chocolate Kisses (unwrapped)
- First, poke the top of the marshmallow with the pretzel stick.
- Then, place a little bit of frosting (glue) on the bottom of the marshmallow.
- Next, attach your unwrapped chocolate kiss to the frosted bottom of the marshmallow.
- Finally, for extra fun and sweetness, add some sprinkles by covering the sides of your
- marshmallow in frosting and gently rolling it in a shallow bowl of sprinkles.
For more fun ways for families to celebrate Hanukkah, visit OurHappyTribe.net.
“I wish you a very happy Hanukkah filled with light, love, donuts and dreidel kisses,” Cohen said.
Hanukkah tends to be a time of sugar overload!
“With all the abundance of candy, donuts and general party food, it can be a challenge to make sure our kids are having fun and eating well.” – Yael Friedman
“With all the abundance of candy, donuts and general party food, it can be a challenge to make sure our kids are having fun and eating well,” culinary and nutrition educator Yael Friedman, founder of Kitch’N Giggles meal kits, told the Journal.
Friedman’s solution: an Edible Menorah.
“The menorahs we light at home have eightcandles for the nights of the holiday,” Friedman said. “This one has seven, like the menorah in the temple, because it’s easier to fit on a cucumber.”
1 large cucumber, peeled and sliced in
1 banana, sliced into 1/4 in pieces
1 mango, cubed
1 clementine, peeled and sectioned.
4 lollipop sticks (I recommend these because they won’t poke little fingers.)
Note: You can always substitute any other fruits or vegetables that you already have. Things that are soft like: grapes, melon or cherry tomatoes.
- Lay the cucumber with the flat side facing down.
- Cut three of the lollipop sticks in half. These will be your candles. The other stick will be your shamash.
- Arrange the fruit however you like on the sticks. Make sure to leave about 1/2 in on the bottom and another on the top.
- Use a toothpick to poke seven holes in the cucumber. Then place one candle in each hole.
- Finally, poke a hole in the bottom of each clementine section and attach it as the flame to each candle.
“I love doing this edible menorah activity,” Friedman said. ”Not only does it get into the holiday spirit, but it’s also a nice break from all the sugar.”