Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Book Review: Tiny Treats

A few weeks ago, to celebrate the end of school, the fairies brought my daughter the book Tiny Treats by Julia A. Monroe. The books shows how to make tiny, fairy-sized, edible food from other foods. This books is great if you are going to put on a fairy picnic or tea. The food is just the right size for our fae friends, as well as yummy (for the most part) for our human ones.

The book is listed at 8+, but my six year old daughter seemed to be able to do most of the recipes we tried with just a little help. The food is adorable and for the most part very easy to make. I will admit some of the combinations sound less than appetizing (in particular the sandals made from Nutter Butters and Fruit Roll-Ups). But of everything we tried, we liked.

My only other complaint is that some of the instructions are little vague or could be improved upon in small ways. For instance, we made the tiny watermelons on pg 19. The instructions tell you to put the lime halves your using as the outside of the watermelon into a muffin tin so they don't roll around. Well, they still roll around. I found that if I cushion them with paper towels first, it makes it easier to fill them with watermelon jello insides as well as move them to the fridge to set.

We also tried the sub sandwiches on pg 18. However, I couldn't find the breadsticks they suggest, so we used small dinner rolls instead. Also, my daughter is not a fan of pepperoni, tomato, or onions. So, we used her favorite sandwich stuffs instead, cutting down pieces of chicken and ham to fit on our tiny buns.

A friend of mine tried the Jelly Roll on pg 30 and said that is a great and easy snack that kids can make themselves. My daughter and I also tried the perfume bottles on pg 41. This is a great recipe for younger kids if you just use slightly larger candies. In my daughters case, I used Jolly Ranchers (though be careful, some stand upright better than others).

We also made the hats on the same page. These are lots of fun to decorate. My only advice is that if you want to cover the tops with Fruit Roll-Ups that you do that before you frosting the tops to the bottoms.

However, my favorite recipe in the entire book is the tiny cakes on pg 34-35. They are so very simple to make--just two sandwich cookies frosted together, then covered in frosting. And like the hats, they are lots of fun to decorate. More over, I can see lots of uses for these beyond fairy picnics. They would make great treats for school or favors for a party. And the little wedding cake that's made the same way on pgs 36-37 would be adorable at a shower or even at a wedding.

Overall, I thought this was a great book for kids and adults alike. While the instructions could be more detailed, the pictures are great. And the food is fun.

The book is available through the American Girl website or in local book retailers.

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