Candy Cane Breadsticks

Happy December everyone! Welcome to the busiest, friendliest and most expensive month of the year. I hope you are all well prepared as I find that it is also the most exhausting. Exhausting because of everything going on and also because you have to contend with not only all the activities, but also the inherent excitement that Christmas brings. The excitement levels of my children always end up making me snap or shout at some point, bringing the inevitable mum guilt that I am spoiling their fun. This year I am trying my best to avoid that scenario. I shall let you know how I am doing slightly nearer Christmas.

Anyway onto happier thoughts. I have had these breadsticks on my brain since I started this blog back in March. Just after Christmas last year I stumbled upon The Crafty Gentleman’s version and decided that I wanted to make a simpler, more child friendly recipe when we reached Christmas again. So now we are back in December again, they were the first item to be ticked off my ever growing list of Christmas cooking.

The breadsticks we made were two different flavours. Unsurprisingly the red strand was tomato flavoured and we used garlic salt to flavour the white strand. This was a beautifully hands on activity with the kids and all three of them had so much fun squishing and squashing the dough together and rolling out the sausages. They did need help to twist them together, and yes they do look homemade, but they all had a lot of fun and were delighted to make something Christmassy. As each child always had a job whether it be kneading the dough, making more snakes or having a go twisting the tomato and garlic strands together, it meant there was no bickering! We found that all of ours ended up being different sizes, but I had one baking tray of bigger ones and a second with smaller ones so the smaller ones were removed from the oven earlier than the others.

Ingredients

Recipe adapted from Tickle Fingers Cookbook

For the garlic strand

  • 90g self raising flour
  • 60ml milk
  • 1/8tsp garlic salt
  • Olive oil
  • Plain flour

For the tomato strand

  • 90g self raising flour
  • 50ml milk
  • 2tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/8tsp salt
  • Olive oil
  • Plain flour

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°c and put silicone baking sheets or greaseproof paper on two baking sheets.
  2. Put the ingredients for the garlic strand (apart from the oil) in a medium-sized bowl and mix. Use your hands to bring the dough together and gently knead until smooth. Put to one side.
  3. Put the ingredients for the tomato strand (apart from the oil) in a medium-sized bowl and mix. Use your hands to bring the dough together and gently knead until smooth. This one will be slightly wetter than the garlic one.
  4. Dust your surface with plain flour. Roll out sausages with each of the doughs. These do work better if they are quite thin and about 10 cm long. If they are thick they will need to be longer to retain their shape.
  5. Take two strands which are around the same length. Pinch them together at the top and twist together quite tightly. Put on the baking sheet and bend the top to form the candy cane shape. We found the easiest way to twist them together was me holding the top and the kids twisting the strands together. This ensured they were twisted tightly and held their shape whilst in the oven.
  6. Gently paint each candy cane with the olive oil with a pastry brush.
  7. Place in the oven for 10-15 minutes for smaller and thinner candy canes and 15-20 for the larger ones. They are cooked when the are light golden and crisp. They do start to burn easily so keep an eye on them.

I hope your kids enjoy making these savoury candy canes as much as mine did. Breadsticks are always a good snack choice and especially at Christmas when everything seems to be full of sugar! I would love to hear from you if you make these.

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