Pizza Pockets

Pizza Pockets (6)

Today is one of those wacky random holiday, National Kids Take Over the Kitchen Day! It was the perfect excuse to prepare the final recipe from Travis’s Lunchtime Love set from Raddish Kids. Travis and Veronika sure did take over with this one, including a messy buffet of all the different types of vegan cheese we needed to make the recipe!

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We needed to make a few vegan adjustments to Raddish’s original recipe, including the use of prepared pizza dough instead of puff pastry, whipping up a batch of vegan tofu ricotta, and using tempeh bacon in place of pepperoni.

Ingredients:

For the ricotta:

  • 1 (1 pound) package firm tofu
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 2 teaspoons nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the pizza pockets:

  • 1/2 cup chopped baby spinach
  • 1/4 cup shredded non-dairy mozzarella
  • 1/4 cup vegan Parmesan
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 slices tempeh bacon
  • 1 pound pizza dough
  • 1/4 cup tomato sauce
  1. To prepare the ricotta, combine the tofu, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic powder, oregano, basil, nutritional yeast, and salt in a blender; process until smooth and creamy. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  2. To prepare the pizza pockets, spoon 1/3 cup prepared ricotta into a large bowl; reserve the remaining ricotta for another use.
  3. Stir in the spinach, mozzarella, Parmesan, garlic powder, oregano, and salt.
  4. Cut the tempeh bacon into 12 pieces; set aside.
  5. Divide the pizza dough into 6 portions on a lightly floured surface. Roll each into a rectangle.
  6. Top each portion of dough with 2 tempeh pieces, 1 heaping tablespoon ricotta mixture, and 2 teaspoons tomato sauce. Fold in half, and press a fork around the edges to seal.
  7. Transfer the pizza pockets to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 425 degrees F for 15 minutes. Let cool before serving.

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Spoon Match

Spoon Match (4)

Veronika loves playing with spoons, whether little measuring spoons or big cooking spoons. I decided to sneak a little learning in while she had them out as a toy today.

I broke apart two sets of measuring spoons and lined them up as large (tablespoon), medium (teaspoon), and small (1/4 teaspoon). Then I encouraged Veronika to match big with big, little with little, etc.

Spoon Match (1)

Grated this task was tricky because one set was heart-shaped and the other a standard oval, so they weren’t necessarily intuitive as a “match”. But she sort of got the idea, especially with the two small ones.

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She fairly quickly returned to just playing with the spoons, but it never hurts to sneak in some quick learning!

Spoon Match (2)

Monkey, Monkey

Monkey Monkey (6)

Thanks to the influence of a certain big brother, Veronika has learned to say, “I want [fill-in-the-blank], gimme!” When I then remind her, “Say please, not gimme,” she becomes impish, doubling down on the “gimme”. So I came up with this incentive to guide her back towards the magic word of please!

We have a set of stacking monkeys that the kids love. I told them that every time Veronika says please instead of “gimme”, a monkey gets added to a tower. Travis’s job is to help remind her that “please” is the word to use. Once the monkeys are all in a pyramid, the kids get a reward.

Monkey Monkey (1)

To incentivize Travis a bit more, a monkey also gets added when he does a kind deed for his sister.

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I love that this added an element of sibling cooperation to the game. Part of the issue, I realized, is that I taught Veronika to say “please” using sign language. Reminding her of the sign prompted her to start using it, rather than “gimme”.

Monkey Monkey (2)

By the end of the first day, the monkey pyramid was growing. Travis was so proud when he could add one for his good behavior.

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After two days, the monkeys had all been stacked – success! The kids decided they wanted hot chocolate from a cafe as a reward, a rare treat. And well earned!

Monkey Monkey alt