Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Dino Cookie Sandwiches & Chunky Monkey Tails!

Summer has hit hard in our area and I’ve been continuously trying to find things to keep a very active 5-year-old busy indoors that’s both cheap and entertaining.  We’ve done the movies, bowling, library, board games, but X-man’s favorite indoor activity has definitely been making fun frozen treats! 

Last week we read How Do Dinosaurs Eat Cookies by Jane Yolen.  At the end of this book are two cookie recipes—Cinnamasaurus Rex (cinnamon oatmeal cookie) and Fossilized Lemon Tracks (lemon sugar cookie).  Xavier was adamant about baking the “Cinnamasaurus Rex” cookies.  Although the temp was high outside we were in air conditioning, so the cookie baking began.  As they were baking we came up with the genius idea to make them into ice cream sandwiches, and just like that the Dino Cookie Sandwich was born!  I followed the book’s recipe, except for using different sugar and using half whole-wheat flour, and they were delicious cookies—very spicy with the cinnamon, nutmeg & cloves.  We all loved them!

Dino Cookie Sandwiches

1 C softened butter
1 C organic cane sugar (you can totally use granulated sugar; this is just what I had on hand)
1 C brown sugar
2 eggs
1 t vanilla
1 T honey
1 t salt
1 t baking soda
1 T cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg
1/4 t ground cloves
1 C AP flour
1 C whole-wheat flour
3 C old-fashioned oats
Vanilla ice cream, softened

In a large bowl, cream together butter & sugars with an electric mixer.  Add 1 egg at a time until fully incorporated.  Add the other ingredients in order, mixing well each time.  One you’ve added the oats, you’ll have to mix by hand.  Roll the dough into small balls and flatten them out a bit.  They do spread, so give them space on the cookie sheet.  Bake 10-12 minutes at 375. 

After they’ve cooled, scoop softened ice cream onto one cookie and smoosh down with another cookie.  Wrap these cookie sandwiches individually with plastic wrap and stick in the freezer until hardened.

This week we read Naughty Little Monkeys by Jim Aylesworth, which he absolutely loves because there’s a monkey named Xavier in the book.  We decided to link a fun frozen treat to this book also and came up with the Chunky Monkey Tail, so simple and easy but great entertainment for the 5-year-old.  J 

Chunky Monkey Tails

4 bananas
32 oz semi-sweet chocolate melts
Chopped almonds
8 popsicle sticks
Line a cookie sheet/cutting board/plate (anything that will fit in your freezer) with waxed paper or parchment. Cut the bananas in half & insert a popsicle stick into each banana half.  Place the bananas on lined sheet/board/plate and freeze  at least 1 hour.

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or microwave according to package.  Set the chopped nuts in a plate. 

Dip the frozen banana into the chocolate & then roll in the nuts.  Return to the freezer until they’ve hardened.  

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