About Me
I'm a Melbourne boy, hailing from St Kilda with one ex, one current wife and four kids. Love the outdoors and making new discoveries. I cook a lot at home (cheers from wife) and do some preserving, mostly jams, pickles and fruit liqueurs. This is the diary of a cooking journey.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2006
Party Help
Daughter M went to a couple of birthday parties last weekend. One of them was in the birthday girl's home, the other a shop that specializes in parties. Everyone had a great time at both, but I have a complaint.

A catering complaint.

At the first party the food consisted of party pies, sausage rolls and fairy bread. Ditto the second party. Is this as far as our imagination can stretch? There is no children's party we have attended in the last couple of years that doesn't feature these three foods. Even places that specialize in parties invariably have these items, maybe with chips (both kinds) as well.

M's sixth birthday is coming up, so started to think what we can do. It looks like we will have a gym party that we will cater for. So far, so good. Until I started to look for recipes that would hopefully interest the young ones. There was absolutely nothing that looked like fitting the bill, the only things I can think of are, you guessed it, party pies, sausage rolls and fairy bread.

I so don't want to do that.

Does anyone have some ideas, or a tried and tested recipe? It doesn't have to be healthy, that would be a bonus, but we are talking kids here. Just something different.
 
  posted at 12:11 pm
  8 comments



8 Comments:
At 2:16 pm, Anonymous kitchen hand said...

Make everything small and dainty and appealing. Crustless sandwiches with cheese, meat, lettuce, egg, maybe chicken loaf. Halved boiled eggs. Cubed luncheon meats. Tiny cupcakes with coloured icing and Smartie tops. Tiny lamingtons. Miniature pancakes - pikelets. Scones with jam and cream. Fruit cake. Plates of fruit cubes, banana, apple, canteloupe, pear.

The main things is to do exactly what you want - don't compromise -and ignore complaints of 'are there any sausage rolls/party pies' or even 'yuk'. Many children have absolutely no manners these days.

I did the above for years with my older kids and invariably you'd get kids turning up their noses. Ultimately my kids loved it because it wasn't just the usual hot pie and sausage roll and frankfurt affair. Plus kids make such a mess with pastry and sauce.

 
At 4:06 pm, Blogger Ed Charles said...

Mini savoury and sweet pizzas using kid friendly ingredients. And you can finish up with chocolate and banana (they're still cheaper than parsnips) pizzas. For sweet pizzas I add some ground almonds to the dough. Simply slice the nanas and grate over some nutmeg - perhaps spinkle with cinnamon and/or allspice. grate the chocolate over and drizzle with honey.
Or chicken kebabs from South Melbourne market...Trifle with fresh fruit.

 
At 1:21 pm, Blogger neil said...

Thanks boys, I'm going to try a few of your ideas, especially pizza, lamingtons and crustless sangers. It's interesting no women replied, maybe because they're on my wifes side, she would like the usual suspects, so this could be a battle to put on interesting food.

 
At 9:12 pm, Blogger plum said...

I'm also suggesting mini pizzas - but I don't make them from scratch. For years now I've used the wholemeal mini pittas and find that the simpler the flavours (sauce, cheese, lamb or chicken, nothing GREEN) the better received. If the numbers are small, the kids can choose their own toppings, but this does not guarantee that a little girl who has spent half an hour decorating hers will not look at it when it comes out of the oven and say "I don't LIIIIIIIIKE it".

Tasty chipolatas done on the barbie. Wingettes marinated in your own sauce (not something syrupy sweet that the butcher's chucked over them). Home made oven sweet potato chips.

I was suggesting to Kalyn that I might start up a monthly event for tried and tested food for children. I haven't gotten around to it, but this could be the first topic - children's birthday parties.

Anyway, good luck.

 
At 12:31 am, Blogger Haalo said...

I'd suggest mini muffins - you can do savoury and sweet. But if you want a lot of ideas get hold of the Donna Hay Kids Issue Annual - it should still be available at the newsagent or maybe even her website.

 
At 8:05 am, Blogger gigi said...

Did you see the episode of 'Top Chef' ~ the one where the contestants had to prepare a meal for a roomful of kids centered around, of all things, monkfish? And the judges showed the kids a lovely whole monkfish before cooking, just to be sure they'd be good and put off.

The result; the kids loved the preparations, which was a "monkeydog" (breaded and fried on a stick) and...I forget the other. But they liked it, although they were not pleased with some of the sides. I was pleasantly surprised to hear some of them being rather discerning; everyone's a critic.

Long story short; if it's well prepared and tasty, they'll enjoy it. And so will you. Make what you like, kid-friendly and finger-ready, and everyone will be happy. :)

 
At 2:02 pm, Blogger neil said...

Hi Plum, I agree about the marinades, those meats that come with it are awful, not to mention they ALWAYS burn and stick. your other suggestions are good.

Hi Haalo, great idea, will look out for it.

Hi gigi, nice story, why is it that things in breadcrumbs are so tasty?

 
At 10:58 pm, Blogger Lazy cow said...

Hi, I'm here via My Favourite Plum. My suggestion is mini bagels from Aviv's. I also make my own mini sausage rolls (using veal and chicken rissoles from my butcher). I always do a fruit platter too, or fruit/marshmallows on a kebab stick (with the pointy bit cut off so they don't jab each other in the eye). Oh, last party (for my 5 yo girl) the guests decorated cupcakes as an activity. Good luck!

 

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