Friday, February 13, 2009

New Books

Yesterday while at the PTC at school, we decided to check out the book fair going on in the library and got a couple of really cool books.

The Book Of Totally Irresponsible Science: 64 Daring Experiments For Young Scientists
Pink Princess Tea Parties Cookbook

The Science book teaches you how to turn milk into stone and other fun stuff like that. The Pink Princess one has recipes for different teas and ciders and other drinks that could be served and a child's tea-party and then some treats to go with the drinks. I thought it was a fun idea and will be posting some of them on here periodically (maybe I'll post some science experiments too). In fact, I'll post a couple things today!

Science first....and then we can all celebrate our success with a tea-party afterward!

The CD Hovercraft: It's everyone's dream to be able to glide around as if they were on a flying saucer. That type of friction-free movement does, in fact, lie at the heart of hovercraft technology. This experiment lets you use everyday objects as a gateway to this brave new world of transport. Be careful, though: Get your answer straight before you hear, "What have you done to my new Kanye West CD?!"
You will need:
Sharp scissors
Plastic bottle cap
Strong glue
Ordinary CD or DVD (old scratched up ones that you were planning on throwing away work great)
7- or 8-inch balloon
1 - Make a 1/2 inch hole in the center of the cap by piercing it with the scissors. Slowly rotate the scissors, widening the hole, until it is 1/2 inch across.
2 - Glue the flat side of the cap to the center of the CD or DVD so that the holes align and let the glue dry. (take care not to use too much glue when attaching the cap to the cd, you might block part of the hole. And, as mentioned already, don't use anyone's precious new cd)
3 - Blow up the balloon and twist the end tight (but do not tie it off).
4 - Carefully roll the balloon's "lop" over the edge of the cap.
5 - Place the CD or DVD on a smooth surface and release.
6 - The "hovercraft" should slide easily along the surface after having had the slightest touch.
*Air rushes out of the balloon through the hole to provide an air cushion below the CD. This cushion supports the entire lower surface of the CD because air is escaping on all sides. And without the friction of rubbing against the surface (the air cushion has eliminated it), the "hovercraft" can move freely. The same principles enable real hovercrafts to trasport passengers and cars accross open water.

Pink Princess Party (there will be 4 from each category)(note* it's not just tea recipes...some are cider and stay tuned for those in later posts)
Tea-Time Sippers: Sweet Chai Tea
Tea-Time Sweets and Treats: Royal Raspberry Tarts
Tea-Time Cookies and Cakes: Patel Petits Fours
Tea-Time Sandwiches and Snacks: Bitsy Bacon and Cheese Rolls

4 cups Filtered water
3 regular tea bags (English breakfast tea, orange pekoe, Darjeeling, or Earl Grey)
2 cinnamon sticks
6 cardamom seeds
3 whole cloves
6 black peppercorns
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 inch thinkly sliced fresh ginger
1 cup plain or vanilla soy milk
4 teaspoons honey or maple syrup
Place water, tea bags, and all spices in a large saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and add soy milk. Return to heat and simmer another 5 minutes, or until steaming. Remove from heat. Pour chai through a large strainer into a teapot. Stir in honey or maple syrup and serve. Or chai maybe covered and refridgerated for up to 1 day and then served cold over crushed ice.

1 purchased family-sized pound cake
9 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 to 3/4 cup water
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond xtract
Pastel gel or paste food coloring
Sprinkles, fresh edible flowers, sugar crystal decorations
Trim about 1/4 inch from each short end of the pound cake. Cut cake into 1-inch-thick slices. Use 1/2- to 1-inch cookie cutters of assorted shapes and cut 2 to 3 shapes from each slice of pound cake. Place cutout cakes on a wire rack set over a cookie sheet lined with foil. Set aside. In a large saucepan, mix powdered sugar, corn syrup, 1/2 cup water, and vanilla and almond extracts together until warmed, smooth, and creamy. Remove saucepan from heat and cool icing for about 5 minutes in pan, Add the remaining 1/4 cup water if needed to create a smooth, flowing icing. Divide icing equally between 2 to 3 small bowls and stir enough food coloring into each one to reach desired color. Spoon icing over each little cake and decorate with assorted fancy toppings. Let stand uncovered at room temperature for about 30 minutes or until dry. Store in airtight container up to 3 days.

1 sheet puff pastry, slightly thawed
1/2 cup raspberry jam
1 1/2 pints fresh raspberries
1 (6 oz) container raspberry or vanilla yogurt
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Place pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface. With a rolling pin, smooth away creases. Using a 1-inch square cookie cutter, cut out peices of puff pastry. Place squares on a prepared cookie sheet 1/2 inch apart. Prick the center of each pastry with a fork to prevent puffing up too much while baking. Bake for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned and slightly puffed. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Slice each tart in half lengthwise and set aside. Slowly heat raspberry jam in a small saucepan, stirring until thinned, about 30 seconds. Spread 2 teaspoons yogurt on bottom half of each pastry square. Top with a few raspberries replace the pastry tops, and then drizzle with warm jam. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

1 (8 count) can refrigerated crescent rolls
6 slices bacon, chopped, cooked and drained
1 cup grated mozzarella or swiss cheese
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Remove crescent rolls from container and lay on a flat surface that has been lightly dusted with flour. Turn over each crescent roll to coat both sides with flour. Cut each crescent roll in half lengthwise to make two long, thin triangles. Place approximately 1/2 teaspoon bacon bits and 1/2 teaspoon grated cheese on the widest portion of each triangle. Roll up each crescent roll jellyroll style, strting at the widest end. Place rolls seam side down on prepared cookie sheet about 1 inch apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven. Cool 5 minutes on pan and serve.

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