Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Welcome Back to School, with Aggression Cookies!

Well, another September has rolled around, Labour Day is nothing but a distant memory, and the kids are back in school. If they (or you) are getting antsy after hours of class and the inevitable homework, why not let them have a break and come into the kitchen for a different type of learning! These "cookies" are a high-energy, nutrient-dense snack that will keep the little ones awake and on the move while they need to be, and while they won't be welcome in all schools (the peanut butter can cause issues with some school board allergy policies), a few of these balls after stepping off the school bus will satisfy a sweet tooth while finishing their textbook questions.


Funny enough, these cookies came out of the test booklet for the Canadian Test of Basic Skills, which whose of us at MLCP who were over 7 years old had to complete every year. It was slated as a week's worth of testing, though if you were lucky enough to be at a high-level and self-directed booklet (such as the one this recipe is from) you could work at your own pace, and most of us did finish on the Wednesday or Thursday even though there were about 15 of us with 5 books between us!


As for the health benefits of these cookies, a USDA study showed that peanut butter and peanut eaters had increased levels of vitamin A, vitamin E, folate, calcium, magnesium, zinc, iron and dietary fibre in their diets. With the sweetness from the honey, there is no refined sugar to worry about (therefore, no blood sugar spikes), and the dried fruit adds even MORE fibre and vitamins, plus another punch of sweetness and a great chew.


Pamela K. Dean, Colorado State University writes: A good snack is nutrient dense. This means that each bite contributes to the child's intake of healthy foods. Six nutrients are needed to maintain a growing and healthy body: carbohydrates, protein, fat, minerals, vitamins and water.


CTBS Aggression Cookies
1 c light smooth peanut butter
1 c dried (not candied) fruit (I recommend a mix of cherries and apricots, use what you like)
3/4 c liquid honey
2 c non-fat powdered milk

  1. Combine all ingredients with your hands in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Roll into small balls, then roll each ball in powdered milk.
  3. Place into a bowl, cover and chill completely before eating.
  4. Will keep up to 2 weeks in the fridge.

Calories: 62.5
Total Fat: 2.2 g
Cholesterol: 0.8 mg
Sodium: 38.2 mg
Total Carbs: 9.0 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.4 g
Protein: 2.5 g