Fix Me A Snack

A blog created by a mom who got sick of feeding her kids crackers and ice cream

Meet our new favorite way to eat oatmeal. I really like it with some chopped pecans on top. The kids prefer it without.

Apple Pie Oatmeal Recipe

This is a perfect not-too-sweet and healthy way to start your family’s day. You can use maple sugar instead of brown sugar if you have it.

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large or 2 small apples, peeled and cored
2 tablespoons brown sugar, not packed
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch ground nutmeg
Pinch salt
1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
1 3/4 cups water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.  Chop up the apples and cook them until they start to get soft. Add the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and cook for another minute and stir well.

Add the oats and water and cook on medium low heat until thick, stirring occasionally. It should take about ten minutes for the oats to thicken. Stir in the vanilla and serve. Top with chopped toasted pecans if you wish.

Yield: 2 1/2 cups
Prep-time: 15 minutes

The weather here has been beyond amazing lately. It’s February in New England and sometimes I find myself in a t-shirt. Outside even. It’s been heavenly and I hope it continues.

What seems to be the early coming of Spring has sent me into a baking frenzy. I simply can’t stop making bread. Have you ever seen the cookbook Flatbreads & Flavors? It’s like crack for homemade bread makers. I just can’t stop. Before we know it it will be far too gorgeous outside to stay in and bake. I was planning on making tons of crackers this winter too and I’ve done next to none. Woe is me.

Recently, I couldn’t find a recipe for whole wheat pizza dough for bread machines on the World Wide Web. It’s always a little troubling when a recipe search just comes up empty. Doesn’t the web have everything on it by now? Anyhow, I was forced to do a little experimenting and come up with my own.

This recipe is actually a mash-up of my husband’s recipe and one I found in a bread machine cookbook. I’m not sure if any of it actually makes sense. But it works for me. I make the dough in the bread machine and then put it in the fridge overnight. My husband does the overnight rest, but I forget why – probably something to do with gluten development or something.

I haven’t tried throwing this dough to make a traditional pizza pie, but it would probably rise to the occasion. I’ve been making ten thousand pinwheels instead. I have enough pinwheels for an army in my freezer. My kid’s school lunches are going to be very predictable, but yummy, for the rest of the year.

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough Recipe (Bread Machine)

Scant cup water
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups bread flour
2 teaspoons active dry yeast

Put the water, sugar, olive oil, salt, and flours in the bread machine pan. Make a well in the flour for the yeast and pour it in. Put the machine on the Dough setting. Check on it once the knead cycle has been going for a little while to make sure it’s not too wet or too dry.

Divide the dough in two and place each dough in a lightly greased 2-quart airtight container. Place the containers in the refrigerator overnight.

30 – 60 minutes before you are going to need the dough, place it on the counter and allow it to come to room temperature. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface or onto a baking sheet.

The rest is up to you! Happy pizza!

Yield: 2 pounds of dough, enough for 2 12-inch pizzas
Prep-time: 5 minutes

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Biscotti are a snack I’ve come a tad obsessed with lately. And this recipe is perfection because it uses up a single overripe banana and we always seem to have one languishing on the counter this winter.

I’ve shied away from biscotti in the past because they can be a little challenging for the kiddos to eat. But it turns out that if you make your own, you can leave them a little soft. Eureka!

Bananas aren’t a typical player in the biscotti universe, as far as I can tell. But the taste is brilliant, especially with the chocolate (surprise!). The whole family loves them and they are relatively low in fat and sugar. The kids have taken to dunking them in tall glasses of milk while we discuss important matters such as whether or not fairies are real.

Chocolate Chip Banana Biscotti Recipe

This recipe was inspired by a recipe from Cooking Light housed at My Recipes.

The crispness of the biscotti depends on how thick you slice them and how long they are baked the second time. If you’d like a traditional hard biscotti, bake them until the edges begin to brown (probably an additional 10 minutes). They will crisp up much more when they cool. By the same token, you can cut the second baking time by 5 minutes if you want especially soft biscotti.

2 cups white whole wheat flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 medium overripe banana, peeled and mashed well
1 large egg, beaten
1 tablespoon safflower oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup small chocolate chunks or mini chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl, mix together the banana, egg, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and mix until the mixture starts to form a ball. Add the chocolate and mix to incorporate.

Divide the dough in two and form into logs about 8 inches long and 2 inches wide. Wet your hands to keep the dough from sticking, if necessary. Place the logs on a parchment-lined baking sheet and flatten them with the palm of your hand so they are about 1/2 inch thick.

Bake for 25 minutes. When they come out of the oven, turn the heat down to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

Allow the logs to cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheet. If they hang out longer they will be more likely to crumble when they are sliced. Carefully transfer the logs to a cutting board. Use a serrated knife to make 1/2 inch thick slices, preferably at an angle.

Arrange the slices on the same parchment-lined baking sheet in a single layer. Bake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes. They will still feel soft, but will harden as they cool. Serve or store in an airtight container. They will keep for several days or can be frozen.

Yield: 24 biscotti
Prep-time: 10 minutes
Bake-time: 55 minutes

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Even though I’m deep into this make-everything-from-scratch-with-locally-sourced-ingredients-whenever-possible phase right now, there are still certain foods that I don’t feel I have the right to acquire anywhere other than at the grocery store. Nilla wafers are a prime example. I stopped buying them probably because they contain high fructose corn syrup or some other evil ingredient du jour. I never thought about making some from scratch. I let out a little squeal of delight when I saw a recipe for them in The Commonsense Kitchen.

Is there anything better than a homemade version of a highly-processed childhood favorite? Or is it a symptom of how boring and ill-focused my life has become that I find it so thrilling?

I’m breaking a cardinal rule I set a while ago for this blog by publishing a cookie recipe. But I’m sure I’m the only one who even remembers that post. You’ll be happy know that this is in no way a healthed-up cookie. I think I’ve made peace with cookies. I say enjoy them, eat too many, and move on.

Vanilla Wafers Recipe

This recipe is adapted ever so slightly from The Commonsense Kitchen. These little gems are so so much better than their grocery store counterparts.

5 tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup milk
2 cups unbleached cake flour or all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farhienhiet.

Cream the butter and sugar together in a large mixing bowl. Add the egg, vanilla, and milk and mix well. Sift in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir well.

Spoon the dough into a gallon-sized freezer bag. This is a bit easier if the corner of the bag to be filled up is resting inside a large wide-mouthed glass. Cut off the tip of one of the corners and pipe the dough onto ungreased cookie sheets at least one inch apart.

Bake for 12-15 minutes until the bottoms begin to turn golden brown. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. Serve or store in an airtight container.

Yield: 4 dozen cookies
Prep-time: 15 minutes
Bake-time: 15 minutes

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When I’m dead and gone I think I’ll have cumulatively spent about 3 weeks of my life wiping up the seeds and junk that fall off of my husband’s favorite breakfast – an everything bagel, toasted, with cream cheese, chopped red onion and capers. How he came up with this I have no idea. Fortunately, my hatred for the everything bagel may ebb now that I’ve found a quick and easy way to turn them into a snack that my kids enjoy.

Bagel Chips Recipe

2 Everything bagels
Canola  (or other neutral) oil spray
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Slice the bagel in half from the top down, not from the side as one usually does for toasting and serving. Slice each bagel half into 1/8 to 1/4-inch thick rounds. Lay the rounds on two baking sheets in a single layer. Spray lightly with canola oil. Sprinkle the garlic powder over the rounds.

Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden and crispy. Allow to cool on the baking sheet before serving. Store in an airtight container.

Yield: 3 cups chips
Prep-time: 5 minutes
Bake-time: 8 minutes

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There are tons of variation possibilities here. Instead of cheese and italian seasoning try some cinnamon sugar OR smoked paprika. This is a recipe that the grown-ups as well as the kids in my house really enjoy. It also does well on the go.

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2 10-inch whole wheat pita rounds
Vegetable oil spray
2 teaspoons parmesan cheese powder
1 teaspoon italian seasoning

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Preheat oven to 350 F.

Cut pita rounds into small triangles, approximately 12 pieces per round.
Pull breads apart at the fold and arrange in a single layer on baking sheet. Spray lightly with oil.
Bake for 10-15 until slightly golden. Allow to cool slightly on baking sheet.