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Biscotti with the Handstand Kids

A month or two ago, Yvette Garfield told me about a new cookbook she was (sorry for the pun, but wait for it...) "cooking up." It is a series of ethnic cookbooks aimed towards children called Handstand Kids.

Fast forward to last week and a copy of Handstand Kids Italian Cookbook was waiting on my desk. Actually make that a decorative box with a smart spiral bound book (with a nice sealed cover) and a little chef's hat (shorter than the average chef's hat and meant for kids - although it did fit my rather large noggin). The concept was created by Yvette Garfield, a law school graduate with a background in international children's rights and is designed to introduce children to other cultures and volunteer opportunities. In general, I really like the concept and think it would make a great gift. The artwork is vibrant, the characters diverse (ethnicities and eating habits) and there is even a section that tells you the ingredients in both English and Italian. The recipes, however, seem a bit complex (mom & dad, get ready to help out!). Granted, there is a difficulty level on each recipe, but flavored popcorn and homemade biscotti get the same rating, so I'd take it with a grain of salt. I also question the font choice, it's "fun" but seems like it could be a little hard to read.

Overall, it's an interesting concept and a series worth keeping an eye on. This is the first book in the set and I'm sure there will be some tweaks along the way. Available now for $28 +S&H.

To check out the Handstand Kid's biscotti recipe,

Bella Biscotti Cookies
From Handstand Kids Italian Cookbook

Makes about 20 biscotti cookies

2 1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp of salt (sale)
2 tsps of baking powder
1 1/4 cups sugar (zucchero), plus more for sprinkling
5 eggs (uova)
1 tsp of vanilla extract
1 cup of toasted whole almonds
1 tsp of cinnamon
1 tablespoon of butter (burro)

Baking Sheet
Cutting Board
Large Bowl
Measuring Cup and Spoon
Serrated Knife
Small Bowl
Wooden Spoon

  1. Preheat the oven to 375° F.
  2. Grease a large baking sheet with a light coat of burro and then sprinkle the sheet with flour.
  3. Mix the flour, zucchero, baking powder and sale together in the large bowl and make a hole in the middle of the mixture.
  4. Add the 4 uovo, cinnamon, and vanilla into the hole and use the wooden spoon to stir it thoroughly.
  5. Add the almonds evenly throughout the dough and using your hands make the dough into 2 logs.
  6. Place each log onto the baking sheet, leaving 4 inches between the edges and the dough.
  7. Beat 1 uovo in the small bowl and use the pastry brush to coat the logs with the uovo.
  8. Bake the logs in the oven for 15 minutes, until they are a nice golden brown color.
  9. Allow the logs to cool for 10 minutes and place them on the cutting board and cut them diagonally into 2 inch slices.
  10. Arrange the slices back onto the baking sheet so that the cut sides are facing up and bake for another 5 minutes.
  11. Cool the slices and bite into the crunchy goodness!

Alternative: Add 1 cup of chocolate chips to the dough. Also, melt chocolate chips in the microwave for 1 minute and dip the ends of the cooled biscotti into the mixture. Refrigerate dipped biscotti for 1 hour and enjoy!

Join The Conversation
Babychloe Babychloe 10 years
What an amazing idea! It's a great way to introduce kids to cooking and they can learn about another culture as well.
chancleta chancleta 10 years
PS Perfect gift for that age bracket that your not sure what to buy: 10-13
chancleta chancleta 10 years
What an adorable idea. I love it. Teach kids to cook, read cookbooks, learn some words in another language, be interested in food from other countries, and be sensitive to other people. I love it.
isahrangme isahrangme 10 years
If they want to represent international children, what happened to Asians? Seriously, just ONE Asian kid, any Asian, would have been fine! Normally, I don't care. But if you're gonna say you promote different cultures, but don't even put one type of Asian culture in there, that just....... sucks.
Linda-McP Linda-McP 10 years
Just ordered this for my neighbor's son. What a great idea!
jendudley jendudley 10 years
What a cute idea. I hope they do well. This is a great concept.
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