Recipe: Berry jelly delight is one for the young chefs

THE kids are back at school after the long summer holidays, but it's never too soon to get them involved in preparing food.

I worked with a well-known Melbourne chef and cooking school proprietor a few years ago designing a cookbook; she chatted endlessly about how her two children under the age of nine made their own pasta from scratch when they arrived home from school and cleaned up the mess afterwards. It left me feeling like an inadequate parent at the time as my son, a similar age, was hard pressed then to make a sandwich; as for cleaning up the kitchen - umm, no.

Today's recipe is a really easy dessert with jelly and berries. It involves boiling water, which can cause a nasty burn if not handled with care, so help the smaller kids to pour. It's a bit like trusting your children to go to the shop or cross the road alone for the first time - terrifying, but with proper guidance the benefits are enormous.

Berry jelly delight


 200g mixed berries  

 2 packets port wine flavour jelly crystals  

 500ml boiling water  

 200ml cold water  

 plain yogurt or vanilla ice cream, to serve.

METHOD: If you are using strawberries in the mix, slice them into bite-sized pieces. Pour jelly crystals into a heatproof jug and add boiling water. Carefully stir the mixture well with a spoon until the crystals have dissolved. Add cold water and stir, then carefully add berries. Stir to combine then pour mixture evenly into four pretty glass bowls. Cover the bowls with plastic wrap or foil and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Serve berry jelly delights with a big dollop of plain yogurt - the dessert will be sweet enough to flavour the yogurt - or a little vanilla ice cream. Serves 4.

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