Kids in the Kitchen: Little Women

IMG_7658Louisa May Alcott must have been a “foodie”.  You have to love how she describes food so scrumptiously in her writing.  From Hannah’s apple turnovers to Amy’s pickled limes there are definite opportunities to incorporate some culinary arts and math skills into reading “Little Women”.  The kids and I had a great time making apple turnovers.  They were quick and easy and a recipe that older kids can do independently.  With the addition of my William Sonoma fall leaf pie stamps they really turned out beautiful.  In addition to making the turnovers the kids really enjoyed decorating them with cut out fall leaves.


1 box of puff pastry (2 sheets)

3 TBS. orange juice

3 Granny Smith Apples

3 TBS. Sugar (plus a little extra if you want to dust the tops with sugar)

3 TBS. Golden Raisins

1 TBS. Flour

1/4 heaping tsp. Cinnamon

1/8 tsp. Ground Nutmeg (My measuring spoon set does not have 1/8- it is a great opportunity to discuss fractions)

pinch of kosher salt

Egg  Wash:

1 egg

1 TBS water


IMG_76431.) Peel and cut into small cubes the three apples.

IMG_76472.) Mix apple cubes with orange juice, sugar, flour, golden raisins, kosher salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

IMG_76493.) On a floured surface roll out the puff pastry sheets so that they are approximately 12×12. Cut into 4 squares.  Divide apple mixture among the squares of puff pastry.

IMG_76514.) Fold diagonally so that the squares form a triangle.  Make sure you interject a little geometry here.  You are turning squares into triangles!

IMG_76525.) Decorate your turnovers with cut shapes, braids, ropes whatever you can imagine.  This part of the cooking activity is wonderful for very small children as well.  The rolling of dough is wonderful for motor skill development.  Using cookie cutters with the press feature is great for fine motor development.

IMG_76536.) Prepare the egg wash and gently brush the top of the turnovers.IMG_76557.) Bake at 400 degrees for approximately 20 minutes.