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Monday, 17 June 2013

Home made fruit snacks- $1.56

That Guy works almost every Sunday.   What that means for me, gentle readers,  is that I have to take both kids to church on my own.
Our church is set up in such a way that first there is service, followed by Sunday school for the kids - not Sunday school at the same time as church service. Trying to keep a four year old boy and an almost two year old girl quiet and happy for an hour has been a bit of a challenge for me.  I  have brought books, activity pads and crayons, Leap Pad, hot wheels cars, magnetic dolls with magnetic clothes and on and on the list could go.  You might ask, "What have you found to work the best?" and the answer is, without a doubt, food! (Although, for the record, glow sticks from the dollar store work pretty well too- for about six minutes)

Yet one cannot bring just any food as I have discovered through some very poor choices. Cheerios, Goldfish crackers, animal crackers and cookies are all bad ideas. They cause crumbs and when dropped on the ground they immediately get stepped on and ground into the carpet.
Fresh fruits, chocolate or candy of any sort are bad ideas for the immediate mess factor
Raisins, dried fruits and fruit snacks have been an all around win though.
But those fruit snacks!! Talk about expensive. And ingredients that made me feel terrible giving them to my children.  So I decided it was time, with much help from That Guy, to brave the kitchen and DIY some fruit snacks for the kids. Here is how we did it...

What you will need :
- 1 pint fresh strawberries
- 2 cups frozen mixed berries
- 3 tbsp honey
-1 cup orange juice
- 1/4 lemon juice
- 6 gelatin packets
- 1 disposable tin tray
- large saucepan
-blender or hand blender
-tiny decorative cookie cutter (optional)
What you will need
Total cost for us comes to about $9.50 for the whole recipe.  Since one batch makes just over 36 servings, that works out to 26 cents per serving.  Since most of the fruit snacks you buy in store come in a box containing 6 servings we are comparing a cost of about $3.50 for 6 servings to $1.56 for 6 servings.  So it costs less, tastes great, is church friendly and much healthier for the kids.

First, clean and slice your strawberries.
Add strawberries to saucepan along with all ingredients except gelatin.
NO gelatin 
Cook on med-high heat approx 10-15 minutes until frozen berries are very soft.

Using blender (or hand blender in our case) puree until smooth.
not smooth 

Remove from heat. Add all gelatin, and again puree until smooth.
Now is the time for gelatin
With care (this stuff it hot!) pour into your disposable tin tray.
hot stuff
Refrigerate min of three hours, although That Guy usually tries to leave it over night.

Remove the tray from the fridge. Slice into half inch squares or use cookie cutter to cut adorable shapes.
Using a cookie cutter

Enjoy both your fruit snacks and your money savings!
Big thanks to That Guy for putting up with me in the kitchen as I "helped" make these :)

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