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Apple Banana Breakfast Cookies

Apple Banana Breakfast Cookie

If you’ve seen a roadrunner cartoon once in your life, you know what a typical weekday morning looks like at our house. Beep! Beep! Hayden wakes up desperately hungry and wants food immediately.  Beep! Beep! Patrick asks for steak and loathes both hot oatmeal and cold cereal (anything really that one would consider normal in the morning). Beep! Beep! Parker who’s the oldest usually doesn’t really want to eat in the morning since he is still half asleep. Beep! Beep! The only morning food they all agree on is junk. I hoped to find a new middle ground – something better than pop tarts, that they would all eat, and that I could manage during a typical ACME morning.

 

Inspired by a recipe I found recently in Martha Stewart magazine for Breakfast Cookies, I gave them a try.  I faithfully replicated the recipe and found that it indeed were very good.  But, as they were loaded with sugar, I envisioned notes home from teachers highlighting hyper behavior or how my son fell asleep after a sugar crash.  To be fair, the recipe has a ton of nuts, butter and whole wheat which all helps temper the glucose rollercoaster.  (Here is the link to the Red Barn Bakery recipe featured in the Martha Stewart Magazine.)To cut some sugar, I used apples and a bananas instead.  (I have never gotten away with using a sugar substitutes in my baking. My 9 year old always catches me and asks, “What is the weird aftertaste?”) I ended up roasting the bananas to bring out the flavor and sweetness and avoid weighing down the dough.  (I learned this little trick from America’s Test kitchen.)  I know roasting bananas sounds a crazy but, it is worth it if you have the time.

Apple Banana Breakfast Cookies

  • 1 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 1 cup cake or all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/2 stick butter, unsalted at room temperature
  • 1 cup dark-brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 ripe banana
  • ½ cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup nuts or seeds (I used sliced almonds, raw sunflower and roasted pepitas)
  • ¼ cup raisins
  • ½ cup dried apples
  • Banana chips, optional

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Roast banana on rimmed baking sheet until skin is completely black, about 20 minutes.  Cool banana completely, peel and mash until smooth. Mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together in a large bowl and set aside.  Using your mixer, cream butter and sugar on medium-high.  Add mashed banana and apple sauce until blended then incorporate eggs, one at a time.  Slowly incorporate flour mixture.  Mix in oats and nuts and dried fruit.

Lightly spray a cookie sheet with baking spray.  Scoop ¼ cup dough onto baking sheet and top with banana slices.  Bake for 20 minutes until lightly golden.

As a side note, Martha’s recipe said 1 cup to 1/2 cup per cookie – which is insane!  1/4 cup makes a perfect size for morning with a glass of milk along side.

Everyone’s a critic

Hayden, age 4, did not care for the banana chips.  The banana chips really do not add much flavor and can easily be omitted if it pleases your picky eater.

Parker loves all things carbs. I gave him my lower sugar version first and he raved about it. When compared head-to-head, go figure, he prefered the version with more sugar.  I am not deterred.  Getting a 12 year old to eat anything for breakfast is a win.

Patrick doesn’t like raisins so I will have to whip up another batch with cranberry, apples and walnuts next time.  At least he didn’t ask for another steak for breakfast!


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Fresh, Colorful and Fast – Tortellini Soup

It has been a busy week with scouts, soccer, trumpet, and football every night so far.  And of course there is work for both my husband and myself.  As such, I fell back to one of my favorite weeknight recipes – Tortellini Spinach Soup.  Before we get to the recipe, just a brief recap on the boys.  Hayden had his first soccer game at the YMCA and while the team lost, he enjoyed every second of it.  Patrick had his first football game, which ended at 10pm Wednesday night.  They won and he was ecstatic!  We were tired.OK, back to a fast, fresh recipe perfect for busy nights!Tortellini and Spinach Soup

Less than 5 minutes preparation

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 3 (14-ounce) cans chicken broth
  • 2 (9-ounce) packages fresh three cheese tortellini
  • 1 ¼ cups chopped plum tomato, seed removed
  • 1 (6-ounce) bag spinach
  • 1 tablespoon butter

Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium high heat, add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds until just fragrant.  Add wine and chicken broth and bring to a boil.  Cook for 2 minutes then add tortellini and cook for 6 minutes longer, stirring occasionally.  Stir in tomato and spinach and cook until spinach just wilts – about 1 minute.  Add butter and you are ready to serve.

Enjoy!

I have seen some variations on this recipe on the web but, I really prefer this version since it uses fresh ingredients rather than canned or frozen.  The fresh ingredients make this dish as lovely as it is quick and tasty.Add the spinach right before you are ready to serve as it will lose its vibrant color if in the liquid too long.  This is a beautiful dish that our entire family really enjoys.  A loaf of french bread and the bottle of white wine you’ve just opened makes this a perfect meal.