I was reading an article a few weeks ago, talking about kids & desserts. Yes desserts, no desserts, moderate desserts, etc. This, of course, got me thinking about lunches & bentos and what desserts would be good in a bento.
Since part of the appeal of a bento is portion size & health, the meal kind of loses something when you throw in a Twinkie. Add in the fact that said Twinkie is probably wrapped in individually sold plastic wrappers, you've just lost the environmental angle too. Now personally? I really happen to like Twinkies but I'm not entirely sure they even constitute food and I'd kind of like the kids to eat something just a little bit better than that.
So armed with Google & a kitchen of supplies, we started experimenting with desserts that at least have a few redeeming qualities to them (veggies, fruit, ingredient lists that aren't 50 items long with chemical names). Why veggies/fruit in desserts? Why not if it tastes good? We're not using it in lieu of real veggies, but it can't hurt to have a little extra veggies along the way.
First up, zucchini spice cookies! Why zucchini? Shaun asked that too. It's really no special reason, just that I had two zucchinis on the counter that desperately needed to be cooked.
They actually are pretty good. The kids know what's in them (they like zucchini) and, coupled with Shaun, were more than willing to be taste testers. They've had three each so far, so I assume they enjoy them. Shaun thinks they seem more like cake-like than cookie and the cookies reminded him of muffins I made a few weeks ago from this recipe. I think they are kind of reminiscent of an oatmeal cookie but without the oatmeal. Must be the raisins.
We both think that a cup of raisins is a few too many raisins for the grownups; F&B liked all the raisins. All of us are interested in trying them again with chocolate chips instead. (Remember, I said desserts with a few redeeming qualities, I didn't say chocolate was out!)\
Zucchini Spice Cookies
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup grated zucchini
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 cup raisins
Cream together butter & sugar, beat in egg, add zucchini & mix well.
Combine dry ingredients, add into the zucchini mixture.
Add raisins & mix well.
Cover dough & chill for at least an hour.
Drop dough on a greased cookie sheet by the teaspoon.
Bake at 375 for 10 minutes or until set.
My one note - 10 minutes was not a long enough baking time, at least in my oven. Mine were probably 15-18 minutes before they set well.
We got about 30 larger cookies from this!
I also added a "dessert" tag on the left (and to this post) to tag our bento dessert experiments. There are a few from the past as well to check out. All better than a Twinkie. ;o)
Also adding this to the Food Revolution Friday linkie.