Thursday, February 17, 2011

Cardboard Box Oven

Today we did what any good homeschooling family does on a beautiful and warm day and that was to find any excuse to get outside!

Also, because every tooth in my head is a "sweet" one, we also threw some chocolate into the equation. What we ended up with was a cardboard box oven to bake brownies.

First you need a box and lid.

Next, you want to cover the entire inside of both box and lid with aluminum foil. You can use a little white school glue to keep it down nice and tight in the event you wish to keep this handy oven for some rainy day when the power is out.
Next you will need about 3 or 4 wire hangers. Unwrap them and then poke three holes on each side of the box to run each wire through. You are making "racks" in your oven to place your baking pan.

Now tighten and twist the ends together (outside the box) so that the rack stays tight. We actually ended up placing a wire the opposite side for more stability. Also, put a few holes in the lid and on the sides for a little ventilation.

Now you have your older children make the brownie mix from mixes. Make it even more fun by having them double the recipe. This will force them to do some math and they will love you for it:-)
You must take this box oven outside and place it on concrete or gravel to cook. First you need a disposable pie plate and some charcoal briquettes.  One briquette equals about 40 degrees. We used 9 briquettes to give us a 360 degree oven. (See!? MORE MATH!) Place your briquettes in the pie tin and place in bottom of oven, under the rack.
Now it's time to take it outside and light the charcoal up.

Allow the briquettes to flame down and burn just a bit. You don't want them flaming!

Now, get your brownies or cake and let your 5 year old evenly sprinkle throw sprinkles on the top and then put it on the rack and close the lid. Set your timer for the same time you would on an indoor oven.

While it bakes, look around and notice the mess made by the front porch and interrogate your little ones as to who made the mess.
They will tell you the dogs did it.Yep, it looks like our dogs can fill buckets with water and grass and make mud pies. Then ask them who left the bike outside all night.

I bet they will have no clue and explain that NOBODY has been riding bikes for months. After you are finished lecturing to your kiddos and the timer goes off, check your food! I bet it's done!

Yep! All done!
Just so you know, the pan is hot!!!! This is a real oven, so use caution. You can also bake anything in it but if it is a recipe that will require a long bake time then you must replace the briquettes after 45 minutes.
Scrap pieces of foil from lining the box?
My sweet Rose claims it can be fashioned into foil footwear or even barbie clothes. Be creative!:-)
Happy home schooling!


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