Everyone knows how important I think it is to get kids involved in cooking. Well, one of the recipes I am sharing today I know will have them running to the kitchen to help. The Monster Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches are a massive hit with the little people in the house; and I can bet that some bigger people will enjoy them too. I am also sharing a beautiful dish of Sizzling Steak Fajitas with Tomato Salsa and Guacamole. I hope you enjoy these recipes. I think they are perfect for family gatherings, especially as the weather gets better; fingers crossed for that! I would love to hear how they went down with the family.
Sizzling Steak Fajitas with Tomato Salsa and Guacamole
This is a great dish that all of the family should enjoy and is perfect to put in the centre of the table so that everyone can dig in. The beef can be marinated well in advance, leaving very little to do last minute.
2 garlic cloves, crushed
finely grated rind and juice of 1 lime
1 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp ground coriander
good pinch of paprika
3 tbsp olive oil
450g (1lb) beef striploin or sirloin, trimmed and cut into strips
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1 red pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips
1 yellow pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips
8 soft flour tortillas
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
fresh coriander leaves, to garnish
6 tbsp sour cream, to serve
2 spring onions, finely chopped
1 large ripe tomato, diced
1 mild red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
2 ripe Hass avocados
juice of 1 lime
Place the garlic in a non-metallic dish with the lime rind and juice, cumin, coriander and paprika. Stir in 1 ½ tablespoons of olive oil. Add in the beef strips, cover with clingfilm and marinate for up to 2 hours, or overnight is best.
To make the salsa, place the spring onions, tomato and chilli in a bowl and mix well
to combine. Season lightly and set aside at room temperature to allow the flavours to combine.
Monster Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches
These are perfect for handing out to children at the end of a barbecue or family gathering. If you don’t want to serve them immediately, they can be wrapped tightly in clingfilm and frozen until needed. It’s also a nice idea to roll the sides of the ice cream cookie sandwiches in hundreds and thousands or a crumbled-up chocolate.
375g (13oz) light muscovado sugar
225g (8oz) butter, at room temperature
2 tsp vanilla extract
350g (12oz) plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bread soda
½ tsp salt
150g (5oz) Smarties
2 x 500ml (18fl oz) cartons vanilla ice cream
Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/gas mark 4). Line 4 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Using a hand-held mixer, cream the sugar and butter in a large bowl until soft and fluffy. Whisk the eggs lightly with the vanilla extract and then gradually beat into the butter mixture. Sieve the flour, baking powder, bread soda and salt into a separate bowl, then beat into the butter and egg mixture.
Use dampened hands to shape the cookie mixture into 20 even-sized balls and then arrange on the lined baking sheets. Flatten the balls slightly, allowing plenty of room for spreading (aim for 4 balls of dough per sheet; you’ll need to bake the cookies in batches). Dot with the Smarties and bake for 10–12 minutes, until rich golden all over and firm at the edges but still a little soft to the touch in the centre. Leave to cool a little, then using a metal fish slice or spatula, carefully transfer to a wire rack while they are still hot (otherwise they tend to stick). Leave to cool.
To serve, place a scoop of ice cream on the flat side of half of the cookies. Cover with the rest of the cookies and then press each one down gently to make a sandwich.