Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Just crossed a line...

I have recently become one of "those" moms that will use cookies to trick her kids into eating healthy stuff.  I was searching for a cookie or cracker recipe that would incorporate some good grains, fruit, and not much sugar to replace the easy-to-grab but empty-of-nutrition club crackers that have become a staple in my kids' snack diet.  Unfortunately I was unable to find such a gem, but I believe that in the process I have developed something way better.

I've discovered quinoa (pronouced KEEN-wa, if you're like me and never would have guessed that).  It's a delightful little seed that when uncooked looks a little like couscous.  Although it's expensive, it's a new must-have on my shopping list.  I've learned that quinoa contains all eight essential amino acids, awesome protein, good fiber, and vitamin B as well as minerals such as iron and magnesium.  Sounds like another perfect food to add to Nola's repertoire of healthy non-breastmilk nutrition. 

So anyway, I wanted to base the recipe off that.  And it turned out surprisingly well.

"Banana" Cookies (as they are known to the kids)
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups cooked quinoa
1 cup peaches crushed, chopped, or pureed (I lazily just smashed em up a bit with a pastry cutter)
1 very ripe banana
3 Tbsp flax seed soaked in 5 Tbsp water
3 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup baby cereal (I used oatmeal)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream butter, shortening, and sugar together.  Add egg and vanilla and beat well.  Stir in quinoa, peaches, banana, and flax seed mixture until well combined.  Combine all the dry ingredients and stir in gradually.  Mixture will resemble more of a banana bread mixture than a cookie mixture, so don't worry if it seems too wet.  Drop cookies onto cookie sheet and cook at 350 for about 25-30 minutes until edges and tops begin to brown.  Cool and store in an airtight container.  Makes about 4 dozen.

My kids all love them.  They turned out a little more crumbly than I would like, but that just means I keep a closer eye on Nola with them.  These cookies are something I totally don't feel guilty about giving my kids even when they haven't finished their supper.

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