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Christmas Recipes for the family 

Gingerbread People

Makes about 20 medium sized people

 125g butter     
 1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
 1/2 cup golden syrup
 1 egg yolk
 2 1/2 cups plain flour                                                             
 1 teaspoon bicarb soda
 1 tablespoon ground ginger
 1 1/2 cups icing sugar
 1 egg white
 3-4 food colours  OR
 Bought writing icings

Preheat oven to 180C and line baking trays with non-stick baking paper. Using a stand mixer or hand held electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in golden syrup and egg yolk, and then stir in sifted flour, ginger and bicarb in two batches. Knead mixture on lightly floured surface until smooth, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Roll the dough between two sheets of baking paper until 5mm thick. Cut out people and place 3cm apart on prepared baking trays. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden. Transfer to wire racks to cool.                                                                   To make the icing, whisk egg white in a small bowl and gradually whisk in sifted icing sugar. Divide the mixture into 3-4 small bowls and add colours. Spoon the icing into small plastic snap-lock bags, snip off a corner and let the kids create their people.

Jelly slice tinsel

Makes 48 squares     
Egg-free, nut-free (check biscuits)


 1 packet sweet plain biscuits (I used Arnotts Nice)
 175g unsalted butter
 400g sweet condensed milk
 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon gelatine
 1 packet of raspberry jelly

Butter a slice tray (16cm x 26cm x 3cm). Dissolve jelly in 1 and 1/2 cups boiling water, place in fridge for about 45 minutes until cool. Crush biscuits in a food processor (or in a plastic bag with a rolling pin), transfer to a bowl and mix in melted butter. Place mixture in prepared tray and press down firmly. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Dissolve gelatine in 1/2 cup hot water. Combine gelatine mixture with condensed milk in a bowl, pour over biscuit base and place back in fridge for 30 minutes until cool and nearly set. Pour cold jelly on top of slice and return to fridge to set. Slice into squares using a butter knife.


Christmas tree biscuits and Chocolate caramel tarts

Christmas tree biscuits Makes 3-4 trees
Gluten-free, nut-free

 250g butter, softened
 3/4 cup caster sugar
 1 egg
 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
 2 1/2 cups plain flour
 100g dark chocolate, melted
 1 packet of Jaffa lollies, to decorate
 1 tablespoon icing sugar, to dust

Cream the butter and sugar together with a spoon in a bowl or use an electric mixer. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until smooth. Add the flour and mix until a smooth dough forms. Divide the dough into three. Wrap the dough portions separately in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Use 2 pieces of dough for the trees and 1 piece for the Chocolate Caramel Tarts, but you could just make more trees.
Preheat the oven to 180C. Line two baking trays with non-stick baking paper. Roll each piece of dough between two pieces of baking paper until 5mm thick. Use three different sized star shapes to cut 4 biscuits of each size. You will need to roll each piece of dough out 2-3 times to get all the biscuits.
Place biscuits on baking trays and cook for 10-15 minutes until golden. I do this in two batches. Cool biscuits on wire racks. For each tree, place one large star on a flat surface, place a small amount of melted chocolate on the biscuit and top with another large star, slightly off line with the one below. Continue with using the chocolate to stick on progressively smaller biscuits. Dip Jaffas in melted chocolate and carefully stick 'baubles' on the tree branches. Stick on as many as you (or the children) like. Place icing sugar in a tea strainer and use a teaspoon to dust 'snow' onto trees.