Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Tuesdays with Dorie: Granola Grabbers

Ring the school bell and get to class. It's time to learn how to bake everything from A to Z for Tuesdays with Dorie. Matriculate yourself, buy the textbook, and bake along. Even though they are home schooled, my two little charges still appreciate the novelty of a "packed" lunch. Maybe it helps with the distinction between school days and weekend days, or maybe there is something inherently pleasant and mysterious about brown bagged food. Packed lunches scream back to school as loudly as freshly sharpened yellow pencils and pleated plaid skirts. Here's a shot from our first official day of school. Notice that I have one child that insists on wearing a crisp uniform to home school, and another child that feels compelled to wear his Peter Pan costume. This amuses me greatly because I'd prefer to do home school in my pajamas. And I'm supposed to be the teacher.
No matter how you're dressed or where you're going, you'll want one of these crunchy chocolaty cookies in your lunch bag. Granola forms the base of these hearty treats, so I used my homemade version full of brown sugar, oats, and pecans. (Scroll down for the recipe.) I also made two batches of the Granola Grabber cookies. After the first batch, which we loved, I thought they might be a touch better with the addition of some baking soda to spread the dough. Dorie's version is sans leavening, and the cookies bake like little mounds, even when pressed down a bit. The baking soda spread the dough perfectly, resulting in a crackly and chewy cookie, and one I'll be making again very soon. Pack some in a brown bag with a napkin note and you'll rule the school. Even if it's home school.
Be forewarned: it's an irresistible cookie dough. If my brother Jack were around, I'd have to hide the bowl or we'd never bake any cookies at all. (If you'll come visit me, Jack, I'll make you a whole bowl of cookie dough. Just for you. )

Version Number one without baking soda. Delicious, but a little too mounded for my preference. Version Number Two, looking very scholastic...Hearty, crackly, chewy, crunchy and devoured quicker than you can say ABC. For the real recipe, click here. For my version, read on.

Money Saving Tips: Use homemade granola here and save yourself a bundle. (Try my version, or use your favorite recipe.) Stock up on butter when it goes on sale. Home baked cookies are cheaper and better for you than store bought, so you're already ahead of the game.

Chocolate Chip, Brown Sugar and Pecan Granola Grabbers
Estimated Cost: $3.00 for 2 dozen
Notes: I went the distance and made these with all whole wheat and whole grain. Kind of makes you feel better about the butter and chocolate. Kind of.
8 tablespoons butter, softened
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 and 1/2 cups flour (I used whole wheat)
1 and 1/2 cups granola
1 cup chocolate chip
1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine butter and both sugars, mixing well. Add egg and vanilla. Sprinkle salt and soda over the top and mix again. Add granola, chips, and nuts. Shape into generous tablespoon sized balls and place on cookie sheets, leaving space for expansion. Bake for 9-11 minutes, or until the edges look browned and the tops are barely firm. Let cool for two minutes and transfer to racks.
Coming Tomorrow:
Reader Request:
Cowboy Shepherd's Pie with Summer Vegetables and Cheddar Potatoes

68 comments:

Clumbsy Cookie said...

Can I grab one then? Or 2, I would like to try bouth version (with and without bs). Your kids are just too cute, look at your boy's face! he must be trouble! ;)

HoneyB said...

Your cookies look great! A big KUDOS goes to you for homeschooling! I think that is terrific...I home schooled the first 3 years of my kids schooling. A great experience and I got to keep my children home longer!

The Blonde Duck said...

That's genius.

We used to have pajama days in the first grade.

I always dressed as a princess.

Mike Spoodles said...

Look great! I toyed with the idea of using chocolate, but looked at the calorie count already and just said "forget it." Haha. I bet it's better with choco, though.

Flourchild said...

Very sweet looking kids! I love your cookie,they turned out great!

Melissa said...

Your cookies are picture perfect! And your children's outfits made me laugh. Too cute!

Kitchen Flavours said...

Choclate chips might have increased the taste in the granola. Chicken and basil sald is yum. Hot dogs tempting.

Andrea said...

Prudy, your cookies are perfect! Your kids look adorable all ready for their first day of school. I love that you pack their lunches for homeschool, what a sweet touch that I'm sure they love. :)

Kirsten said...

Those cookies look wonderful, but it's the corn dog I really want to try!

chocolatechic said...

These were phenomenal!

I loved them. I added a blurb of vanilla to mine and the extra bit of liquid helped them spread a bit.

Lori said...

your son in his Peter Pan costume made me laugh OUT LOUD, all alone in my office. SO adorable. And your cookies are magnificent, too. (my own son wanted to dress as fire for halloween one year. fire???!)

n.o.e said...

Great looking cookies and your kids are adorable! My cookies didn't flatten even when I pushed them! I didn't mind them that way, but now I know what to do to spread them...
Nancy
The Dogs Eat the Crumbs

Aggie said...

I am cracking up about your kids and their difference in "uniforms"! They are so adorable!!

I love these little cookies! I'm off to make a batch of granola...inspired by you! Maybe the fam will get lucky today and get some cookies too! We are all home together for the hurricane (or is it a tropical storm now? have to watch more weather channel!).

Lisa said...

Yum! I agree that the baking one sodas look better. I'll take those, please.

Maria said...

Your kids are adorable! Thanks for the baking soda tip. I will have to add some to the recipe. Your cookies look so tasty...esp. with your homemade granola!

Katrina said...

I love their 'first day of school' outfits. I was stuck wearing uniforms for 11 years... I'd have totally preferred the peter pan costume!

Your cookies look great, and good idea on adding the BS!

Engineer Baker said...

Your kids look too cute! And great idea to try them with some leavening, it seemed odd not to have any.

The DeL Sisters said...

Mmm! Looks good! Love the chocolate chip addition:-)

Your kids are so cute.......

rainbowbrown said...

A parent who allows their kids to be Peter Pan and uniformed for school, even home school, is a aces in my book. I bet they're fun kids. Your cookies look great, nice experimentation, making them two ways. Glad you found one that worked for you.

Natashya said...

How cute are those kids!
I want a peter pan costume now. We loved the cookies too, I'll have to try the chocolate chips in them next time.
I made the corn dogs for Elijah on Sunday night - he loved them and was very impressed with his mom.

Gloria (Canela) said...

Dear Prudy your cookies are wonderful!!! and the pictures!! Love the childs pictures they are soooo cute!!!, oooh mine are so grow up!!! snif, snif, have 14 (and is a difficult age) Have a lovely day, xxxGloria

(Here is sooo cold, but the mountains are snowed!!!)

Mary Ann said...

Your granola grabbers look great and I am sure your little students are loving them in their lunches. I cannot tell you how much I love their school "uniforms"! Very fun.

Anne said...

They look great Prudy! I love the spread out cookies. I thought whole wheat was a nice addition (and you're always rocking it by adding it to everything... nice job!)

sliceofsueshe said...

You homeschool? I have even more respect for you now. Cute kids!

Sara said...

I'd love to grab some of these from your kitchen! Love your version of this cookie. I've been baking cookies the last few days, but I really want to make some of your granola and your cookies. Thanks for always visiting my blog. I always know that you and Jenny from Picky Palate will be the ones to comment first! Have a great day at school!

Pamela said...

I agree that it was quite a tasty cookie dough. I couldn't keep my fingers out of there! Your son looks adorable as Peter Pan. Did you make that or buy it. We are going through a Peter Pan phase here(again) and they are having fun. And your daughter looks so lovely! Anyway, nice cookies. :o)

Amy said...

Cute kiddos!! I am making your granola today!! These cookies look SO great, I'll be trying these too!

Catherine said...

I love Sailor in her school uniform. I keep thinking that if I homeschool Annabelle she'll have to wear a uniform or plaid skirts with crisp white collared shirts. And I cracked up when I saw Westy in his Peter Pan costume. What a fun school, you're running there! I wish I could've seen what you wore on the first day of school!

The cookies looks delicious! I can't wait to try them and put them in a brown lunch bag with a name on it! Looks so fun!

Bridgett said...

Oh my, your kids are darling!! My little one insists on wearing her princess dresses all day as well. I love it! I had my eye on this recipe in Dorie's book and yours look even better. I love the last pic!

Mara said...

i also added chocolate...yumm!!! i adored the little mounds of goodness hehe. love the pix of your darlings.

kim said...

i agree, there is some mystique about a packed lunch! :) your kids look adorable, and the cookies look so delicious. got to have the chocolate to balance out the whole wheat ;)

Christine said...

I would go to work in my pjs if I was allowed! Good luck with school this year I loved your son's outfit! Delicious cookies!

Steph said...

Your kids look soo cute in their uniform and costume. If I ever make these again, I might give your version a try especially since it uses whole wheat flour and a touch of baking soda so that they don't actually bake up like mounds ie.. mine. I had to pat them down with a spatula to get more of a 'spread'

CB said...

ooohh that homemade granola sounds yum! I definitely need to try it. Glad you all liked the cookies!
Clara @ iheartfood4thought

Beth said...

These I have to try. I don't think I could keep a straight face teaching a kid maths in a peter pan costume! Very cute though!!

Marjie said...

Funny how they're so different. I homeschool in my jammies, too, but the boys always get dressed. Sometimes the dog brings his lobster or rope to school, then it must be recess time. And a picnic basket makes lunch much more fun!

Cathy said...

I am a new TWD-er; I definitely want to try your granola recipe. I have no doubt that I will like these cookies even better with chocolate chips; I will try them that way next time. Your kids are precious -- love Peter Pan! I was thinking about trying to encourage my older two to go as Peter Pan and Tinkerbell for Halloween, but I don't think I can talk my son out of his Incredibles costume.

Great blog!

The Food Librarian said...

Oh my goodness! Can they be any cuter?!? (Both the kids and the cookies). Great job!

Steph said...

Oh these look so amazing! Your kids are adorable, and I love the costume! Cute!

gigi said...

Hey you,
I'm a few days behind. Still haven't made the granola, but plan on it in the morning. I've always had a weakness for granola. The cookies look wonerful. I have to have a plan when I bake sweets, I have to give them away quickly before I can eat them all :)

I love first day of school pictures so much. Your children are so precious! There is a photo contest that you'll have to enter their picture in. I think it doesn't start until Oct, so I'll send the info at a later date. The prize is a camera.

Teanna said...

Brilliant, as always! And how gorgeous are your little ones!?

Kayte said...

Oh, I love the first day of home school years...I miss them so much! I just wanted to sob a little at the photo. Matt and Alex would request a brown bag lunch occasionally, too, and I would comply. After a couple days of that they would say, "These aren't all that great, can we just have our regular lunch?" LOL.

Same with the bus...they thought they might like to ride a bus. Then all the kids in the neighborhood who rode the bus complained about it so much and cried to have their parents drive them, that we no longer heard anything about riding buses.

Your cookies look great. Loved the entire post...such fun to hear all the bits of everyone's days...sort of like we are all gathered conversing around Grandma's kitchen table of yore, don'tchathink?

Best wishes for the school year to you and those darling littles!

Anna M. said...

You have adorable kids! Thanks for the cookie recipe...I think I'll have to whip up a batch for my husband to grab when he gets home! =)

Jeena said...

These cookies are brilliant, they look so filling and wholesome yum!

steph- whisk/spoon said...

haha...your kids are hilarious! love the peter pan costume, and does your daughter mix it up with a variety of different plaids, or does she stick to one uniform style for the whole year? those choc chips make the cookies look great!!

SiHaN said...

your children are so fortunate.. i wish my mum baked like that. NOw i'm regretting a little not doing the granola grabbers.. *groanz*

Rigby said...

Your cookies look tasty! I will have to try the baking soda idea :)

Debinhawaii said...

I would wear my PJs all day if I could. Your cookies look great--especially Round 2!

Kelly H said...

Ohhhhh... so THAT'S what baking soda does. Who knew??

Prudy said...

Kelly
Thanks for stopping by. I know it's strange but baking powder puffs and baking soda spreads. I thought these cookies needed a little spreading so I'm glad the soda did its job.

Jonna said...

Thanks Prudy for visiting my Baking Blog: Get Off Your Butt & Bake. I really enjoyed browsing your wonderful blog as well. I will be back. Your kids are darling! See you soon.

~Holly said...

You seem to be such a fun mom! I've thought about home schooling but I haven't came to a conclusion on the matter. It's OK I still have plenty of time to decide! :) I am excited to see what your Shepherd's Pie recipe will be. Shepherd's Pie has always been a favorite of mine!

chou said...

Oh yummy. I love that you messed with the recipe so thoroughly and made it your ownl

Rebecca said...

I can't believe I've been buying granola when it's so easy (and so much cheaper) to make your own. Can't wait to try your recipe!

Molly Loves Paris said...

Wow, you really changed the recipe. They look great. Chocolate and pecans are a great idea, and I had wondered about the lack of leavening. When I home-schooled my children, I was so glad I didn't have to pack their lunches.

Shandy said...

Every time I come here, I learn something new. I had no idea I could expect this kind of result from baking soda. What a difference.
Your children are absolutely adorable! Quodos to you for being able to home school your children.
Both batches of cookies look absolutely delicious and I am going to have to copy your granola recipe. I am always trying new ones to find what works the best for me. . .mixed in with my vanilla yogurt. =D

Jaime said...

i didn't have the spreading problem, probably b/c i omitted the almonds! your kids are too cute!

the cookies look so yummy, esp w/the choc chips!

Debbie said...

Thanks for the welcome to TWD!! Love your blog!!! I'll be back.

Marie said...

Great job Prudy! I Love your little students as well, nice touch! I wish I could go to work in my pajamas!

Nickki said...

Your version sounds so good. I also wondered what these cookies would be like with a little leavening. You've inspired me once again! I must make these very soon :)

And I really admire you for homeschooling! Amazing. Your kids are so cute! I do love your daughter's uniform. And your son looks adorable in his peter pan outfit!

Dhanggit said...

your kids are so adorable!! and those granola grabbers...are calling my name!!

Madam Chow said...

Your kids are sooooo cute! I love that you home school them, and that they get little lunch bags, too! Oh - was this post supposed to be about cookies? ;) I'm glad they were a hit!

Angie said...

I LOVE your children's outfits... it cracked me up :)

www.theamericanhomemaker.blogspot.com

Liz said...

Whooo, those cookies look amazing. I think it's the glistening chocolate chips winking at me from the top. I like the idea of adding baking soda...I ended up adding a little more egg than called for and that seemed to help the spreading as well.

kittymama said...

The kids and the cookies are both so cute! I still can't believe back-to-school starts in August now...
Thanks for your comments on my blog, esp about my cat. I appreciate it.

Alwayzbakin said...

Your cookies look awesome with those big chocolate chips. Your kids look so cute, too!!

Jacque said...

Those cute little students look like they're ready for some serious learning! How fun!

Your cookies look fantastic! Neat idea adding some leavening... I hadn't even thought of it.

Tami said...

MMM! A couple of cookies and a big glass of milk...what could be better for an afterschool treat?!? These are definitely a keeper! Your kids look so cute!