Saludos Amigos and The Three Caballeros

When we did a double bill movie night, Saludos Amigos and The Three Caballeros my daughter and I spent the evening yesterday getting the craft ready while the boys were at speed skating. We had lots of girly fun and made a piñata that she named Burrita (her head looks enormous in the photos, don’t know why). We researched the history of the piñata online and found out the donkey is in tribute to the one that carried Mary to Bethlehem. Burrita was very, very solid and well made which suited my daughter just fine because she became very attached to that piñata. She only let her brother hit it three times, then she whacked it down and didn’t want to hit her anymore because she was so fond of her, so we popped a hole in the bottom and pulled the candy out. The kids pronounced it their favourite movie night so far (I am pretty sure it had something to do with the candy).

For this craft you’ll need a large cardboard box, masking tape and clear tape, scissors, string or ribbon to hang it with, several colours of tissue paper, white card stock, markers and something to go in the piñata (we used candy but you could do anything, toys, colouring books and crayons, games, books, etc.). I found this site which was very helpful for starting us off on figuring out how to make our piñata. There were a few things we did differently: we made 4 tubes with card stock for the legs and two cone shapes out of card stock for the ears. The body and head were two separate boxes and the trap door at the bottom was much larger but even then it was probably too solid. We also drew eyes on card stock with marker and added them for extra beauty.

The recipe which I’ve posted below was for a South American style granola bar with quinoa, dark chocolate and dried fruit. We skipped the peanut butter and nuts and just used sunflower seeds but it was still really delicious. Again, I put the kids to work de-shelling the Spitz sunflower seeds and it took them almost an hour for them to get me half a cup.

Quinoa Granola Bars (Serves: 18)
500 mL regular oats
250 mL quinoa flakes
125 mL sunflower seeds
125 mL dried fruit (raisins, cherries, berries, etc.)
125 mL dark chocolate chips
60 mL vegetable oil
80 mL maple syrup
45 mL sunflower sunbutter (optional)
60 mL light brown sugar
5 mL vanilla
2 mL salt

1. Preheat the oven to 350˚C. Line a 9 inch square baking pan with aluminum foil. Lightly grease the foil with vegetable oil.
2. Place the 60 mL vegetable oil, maple syrup, sunbutter, and brown sugar in a microwave proof bowl or measuring cup. Microwave gently on low heat for 30 seconds or so, or until ingredients can be whisked together easily. Whisk in the vanilla and the salt.
3. Mix the oatmeal and quinoa flakes together in a bowl. Coarsely chop the seeds and dried fruit, and stir them into the oatmeal mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips.
4. Add the liquid mixture to the oat mixture and stir until the dry ingredients are well coated. The mixture should be sticky and should start to clump together. If it doesn’t, and it seems dry and crumbly, add more maple syrup until it does.
5. Press the mixture down firmly into the pan. Grease a small piece of aluminum foil and use it to compress the mixture down into the pan as smoothly and firmly as possible.
6. Place pan in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes, until grains appear toasted and smell fragrant. Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes. Finish cooling pan in the refrigerator, and for best (least crumbly) results, wait until mixture is well chilled before cutting it into bars.

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