Yes we seem to play with our food a bit more than normal families. When I saw a smile made with red apple slices and marshmallows, I knew I had to modify it to make a green gator smile.
You will need:
- Green apples (Golden delicious actually tasted best)
- Flavored cream cheese (We tested the apple smiles and found the original recipe that called for peanut butter made our marshmallow teeth look like they needed to be brushed. Ick…cream cheese to the rescue!)
- Mini marshmallows
- toothpick (optional)
- Cut a medium to large green apple in 8 slices about 3/4 inch thick each.[You’ll need thicker slices for the top of the gator head, and thinner slices for his lower jaw.]
- Follow the pattern shown here or free hand it on your own.
- Cut another apple slice to slightly less than a ½ inch thick.
- Cut a small hole in the spot where the gator’s eye would be.
- Have the kids Insert a raisin in the small eye hole, and add a dab of cream cheese to create a sparkle in his eye, if you’d like.
- Spread the cream cheese on the “teeth” side of the alligator’s head, and on one side of his lower jaw. Put 3 marshmallows in between the gator jaws, using the cream cheese to hold the marshmallows in =place. If you plan on moving your gator around a lot, you may need to stick a half of a toothpick into each side to hold it together. Otherwise, you can set it on your kids plates and watch them grin right back.
Book to go with this activity: I looked at folktales from around the world and couldn’t find one that described how alligators got their smiles, so I made up my own story. How Alligator Got His Smile Back, by Jayne Moraski and illustrated Carl Kocich (Guardian Angel Publishing 2014). Here’s a link to a review by Barbara Bockman.