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Don’t let kids watch Squid Game—but let them eat this

Dalgona cookies can keep the kids busy

Attempt at dalgona candy from Squid Game

I consider myself a parent now, minus the C-section. My brother passed away six months ago, and no matter how painful life can be, we move forward.

Moving forward had me co-parenting his two children: 12-year-old Marco and seven-year-old Dana. I spend every other week with them to help their mom Rose, and my mom alternately spends the other week with them, in the process erasing a week’s work of disciplining them because with Mama, as they call their grandmother, it’s always spoiling day.

Marco carving out a circle from a Dalgona cookie

I have zero knowledge in parenting, and I didn’t have a plan. I just winged it by trying to be a cool Tita, at the same letting them know who has authority and the absolute final say. Words like “I mean it now” or “I’m serious” mean nothing if you don’t establish that authority. And I thank my brother for establishing that; I think they listen to me only because I sound like the female version of my brother. But they know that even when they can piggyback on me and play spit in the swimming pool, at the end of the day, I’m still the adult.

Oftentimes, they think I’m their barkada. That’s how I found out Marco had seen Squid Game. They were playing Roblox and Dana said, “Look, there are so many people who joined ‘Red Light, Green Light.’” I did a doubletake and said, “Wait, are you talking about Squid Game?!” And that’s how I found out Marco watched it online (not even on Netflix; I think they had a watch party among online friends) and how Dana “saw some of it, but Kuya made me close my eyes in some parts.”

I’m not going to talk about how bad we are as parents for not even knowing what they watch on their gadgets. (Though I must admit, it was a lesson for me to watch them more closely and learn the parenting controls my brother had set up in their gadgets.) But I’d like to think I can at least make something good out of it.

In the show, contestants struggle to cut out shapes made of honeycomb candy known as Dalgona, a very popular Korean treat

Squid Game is an incredible, terrifying show that is most definitely NOT for kids. It has many great moments, and perhaps one of them is seeing the contestants struggle to cut out shapes made of honeycomb candy known as Dalgona, a very popular Korean treat. Dana wanted to make the Dalgona cookies from episode 2, and I was game to supervise them for this one.

I know so little about parenting, but now I know not to feed them sugar beyond 4 p.m. Dana was jumping up and down the couch like an Energizer Bunny well into her 9 p.m. bedtime. Baby steps. But hey, I’m one helluva cook! Kids need to eat, so that comes in handy.

Failed version of a Dalgona cookie


  • 2 tbsp white sugar
  • A pinch of baking soda


  • Line baking sheet with parchment paper
  • In a small non-stick skillet (or metal ladle if you have it), add sugar. Stir the sugar with a chopstick until it begins to melt.
  • Once the sugar is melted and appears amber in color, remove from the burner, add a pinch of baking soda, and mix well.
  • IMMEDIATELY pour the mixture onto the baking sheet.
  • Flatten with another piece of parchment paper, about ¼ inch.
  • Use a cookie cutter to create desired shape.
  • Let cool and give your kids a needle to use for cutting the cookies into shapes ala Squid Game. Just kidding. 

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About author


Spanning two decades of a career in publishing, she began to see the lockdown as a priceless boon – for it has given her the leisure of unleashing her potential as an amateur baker, writer, and digital publisher.

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