The kids have been so great lately. Like every family, we have our ups and downs. Good days and bad. The first couple weeks in January were rough. Getting back into the school routine after what felt like two solid weeks in our holiday pajamas took its toll. Throw in a few mid-winter colds and sub-zero temperatures and things get downright ugly. With the help of a new morning routine (and some warmer winter temperatures) I feel like we’ve finally found our stride again. To celebrate the good behavior and good moods, this past weekend me made it all about the kids.
On Saturday we surprised them with tickets to Disney On Ice. They absolutely loved the songs and costumes (and obligatory flashing souvenirs). I was a little worried it might be too loud or long for them but they thoroughly enjoyed every minute.
Then on Sunday, we started our Valentine’s Day celebrations early with a cute little tea party. Inspired Home asked me to write an article on kid-friendly ideas for celebrating Valentine’s day. Since Lillian is super into tea parties right now, creating one seemed like a perfect fit. (Max, being a good little brother, will usually sit nicely for these elaborate affairs so long as tasty snacks are served and he can bring his cars to the table.)
Something about a children’s tea party has always warmed my heart. Kids seem so earnest in their efforts to be “fancy.” Its all so innocent and sweet and…fleeting. I’m thrilled were were able to capture them in this moment, even while I know they can’t stay this way for long.
The tea party itself was the sweetest but the preparation beforehand was awfully fun too. We were asked to review a little contraption called the Babycakes Multi Treat Maker. It looks like a waffle iron but makes cute little baked goods in about five minutes. This might possibly be the greatest thing ever invented, if you asked Lillian. She’d been intrigued by commercials for the Easy Bake Oven but when this thing arrived on our doorstep, her eyes were as wide as saucers.
We experimented with the treat maker all week, but Lillian was most excited about making the tiny little donuts. We waited until Sunday morning so that we could enjoy hot, fresh donuts with our breakfast. These did not disappoint. They were like sweet, cakey little gems with just a hint of tang from the buttermilk in the batter and the sweet vanilla glaze.
Hopefully our “real” Valentine’s Day will have a little more romance — JT has been musing about a homemade pasta-making date and opening a bottle of the Chablis we brought back from France (we’re a perfect culinary match). But our morning will likely be filled with drooly kisses and sticky hugs and donuts. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Baby Buttermilk Donuts with Vanilla Buttermilk Glaze
Makes about 16 mini donuts
1 cup cake flour
1/4 cup plus 2 Tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup plus 2 teaspoons buttermilk
2 Tablespoons butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 Tablespoons buttermilk
- Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, buttermilk, egg, butter and vanilla in a food processor and blitz until well blended, about 30 seconds. Transfer batter to a piping bag or zip top bag with one corner snipped away.
- Insert donut plates into Babycakes Multi-Treat maker and plug unit it.
- When the “Ready” light turns green pipe donut batter into wells until each is about 2/3s full. Close lid on treat maker and bake for about 5 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center of each donut comes out clean. * Note: This recipe could also be made using a mini donut pan. Bake in a 425 F degree oven until golden and a toothpick comes out clean.
- Use a rubber spatula to carefully remove donuts to a wire rack and cool completely. Repeat with remaining donut batter.
- To make glaze, combine confectioner’s sugar, vanilla and buttermilk in a small bowl and whisk until smooth. Add additional buttermilk as needed to create a smooth glaze. Dip each donut in the glaze and top with sprinkles if desired. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container up to 24 hours.
Note: I received the Babycakes Treat Maker free-of-charge as part of my work for Inspired Home. All opinions about the product, recipes and thoughts shared in this article are my own.