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Math: Fractions & Decimals

Fraction Action With a Cheese Sticks Recipe


Today's Snack: This recipe takes over an hour to make, but will be worth the wait. Pair cheese sticks with a glass of ice-cold milk.





3 T. (40 ml) butter or margarine, softened

1 C. (375 ml) all-purpose flour

tsp. (2 ml) baking powder

tsp. (2 ml) salt

1 egg

C. (50 ml) milk

Parmesan or Romano cheese




Large mixing bowl, wooden spoon, measuring spoons and cups (great if they show milliliters as well as teaspoons, tablespoons and fractions of cups), greased cookie sheet, a little extra flour, rolling pin, knife (with adult supervision), basting brush, milk or water, wire rack


While you're waiting for the dough to rise after the first few cooking steps, do a little math work based on this recipe. You will be converting fractions into metrics - milliliters, in this case. Use either paper or a whiteboard:


If there are 40 milliliters (ml) in 3 tablespoons, how many milliliters in 1 tablespoon? (40 3)


If there are 375 milliliters in 1 cups, how many milliliters in one cup? (375 3 and multiply that times 2 - you are figuring how many milliliters in cup, since there are three cups in cups, and doubling it to find out how many in 1 cup)


If there are 2 milliliters in teaspoon, and 3 teaspoons in 1 tablespoon, how many milliliters in 1 tablespoon? (2 + 2 = 4 milliliters in 1 teaspoon and 4 x 3 to find out how many milliliters in 1 tablespoon, since there are 3 teaspoons in 1 tablespoon)


If there are 50 milliliters in cup, how many milliliters are there in 1 cup?


If 375 degrees Fahrenheit is the same as 190 degrees Celsius, is the measurement of Fahrenheit about twice as big as Celsius, three times as big, or four times as big? (take 190 x 2, 190 x 3 and 190 x 4, and see which is closer to 375)


If inch equals 1 centimeter (cm), how many inches equal 10 centimeters?


Can you think up any more math questions on your own, based on these ingredients?


OK, now let's cook! This recipe makes about 20 cheese sticks:


In the large mixing bowl, combine the softened butter or margarine and the flour, baking powder and salt. Use the wooden spoon. Keep mixing 'til it crumbles.


Add the egg and milk. Mix until it forms a soft dough. Let the dough rest in the bowl for 30 minutes. You can cover it with a damp towel if you wish.


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease a cookie sheet.


(During this half-hour wait, you can do those math problems listed above!)


Sprinkle flour lightly on a clean countertop. Put the dough on it. Roll out the dough with a rolling pin to inch (1 cm) thick. If the dough is too sticky, add a little more flour with your hands (washed!) and try again.


Cut the dough into sticks or rectangles, inch wide and 2 inches long.


Brush the dough sticks with milk or water, using the basting brush. Sprinkle lightly with Parmesan cheese and paprika.


Bake for 25 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Then eat!


By Susan Darst Williams Math 2012


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