Tis the season to have fun in the kitchen

Hey lovelies,

It’s crazy to think we’re hurtling towards the end of the year. Christmas parties, school plays, pantomimes, Secret Santa, there’s so much to think about! A lot of these involve food, so naturally, we’ve got a special festive recipe lined up for you to bake, enjoy and share. 

But we’re also going to take a step back and look at the great achievements of our Kids in the Kitchen this year, as well as think about how 2023 could be a fresh start for fussy eating habits in your home! 

Building Confidence and Life Skills: Kids in the Kitchen

I can’t begin to tell you how proud I am of every single child who turned up to our Kids in the Kitchen Zoom classes in 2022. 

It’s been so much fun spending an hour a week with kids from all over the country. We even have participants from the UK, US, Canada and Australia! And if the live class doesn’t suit, our little chefs can catch up by following the recording whenever they’re free. 

Children from 5 and up, some with additional needs, have had a blast at our sessions this year. They’ve loved learning from another child: Lils is great at demonstrating the skills and having a laugh with everyone!

This year, the kids have learned how to prepare full meals such as chicken katsu curry, chicken pie, lasagne and much more. They’ve also made a range of burgers and other finger food such as spring and sausage rolls! All the recipes use everyday ingredients that you’ll find in your local supermarket. 

These classes have built confidence, encouraged kids to try new foods and brought fun and friendship to healthy eating. And parents love having someone else cook once a week!

Check out some testimonials sent in by parents:

“Claire has always loved cooking and baking and loves checking out what she is cooking next week, she shops her ingredients and gets everything ready. Claire is very shy and I love to see her taking charge of her classes and getting involved in the weekly classes. And I love that Claire takes care of dinner once a week!”

“What can I say, she had such a good time, she’s been on a high all evening. The class was amazing. So easy to follow and you and Lils are so natural. Aisling said, ‘look Mam, they are in an ordinary kitchen like ours’ and I think that’s the beauty of it, it’s all so real and accessible.”

“Hi Jolene and Lils, I just wanted to thank you both for bringing cooking club into our lives. Jack is so proud of himself tonight, he can’t wait to tell everyone in school about his restaurant quality curry! I was finding it very hard to get something that keeps his interest as he isn’t sporty at all. I think he’s found his calling here with cooking! He was tasting all the ingredients, smelling the spices, cracking the eggs, he just loved it all. It’s nice to get a break once a week from cooking. He’s already planning when we can make the curry again! Also, I don’t know if mentioned but Sam is autistic (name changed) so to see him with such passion for something really warms my heart. “

Christmas Eve Santa Cookies

I have it on good authority that these are Santa’s favourite treat to find on Christmas Eve. But they’re yummy for everybody, not just the man in red.


  • 80g soft light brown sugar
  • 80g caster sugar
  • 100g unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 medium free-range egg
  • 270g plain white flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 1 tablespoon of oats
  • 100g chocolate chips


  1. Preheat the oven to 180c (fan) and line a flat baking tray with greaseproof paper.
  2. In a large bowl with a wooden spoon cream together the butter and sugars
  3. Crack in your egg and mix again
  4. Pour in a teaspoon of vanilla essence and mix
  5. Add the flour, oats and chocolate chips and mix until you have a crumbly cookie dough
  6. Get your hands in and roll into 8 cookie dough balls
  7. Place on a baking tray in the centre of the oven and bake for around 15 mins 

Over to You

I’d love to see your cooking creations, whether it’s your Santa Cookies left out on Christmas Eve or some tasty desserts you’ve rustled up for Christmas dinner. If you’d like to share your photos with me just hit reply and send them on.

I hope you and everyone you love have a very happy and peaceful Christmas and New Year. Enjoy the holidays and have fun in the kitchen!

See you in 2023,

Jolene and Lil’s x

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