You know what’s awesome? Squirrels. Because they just are.
I have a mountain of work beside me that I still need to complete before my day is done. Without the time to make a balanced dinner, I did what any thinking person would do. I made cookies.
Now, before you judge me too harshly, I also had a sandwich. But I needed a bit of extra fuel to carry me through this evening. Dedicated to the MoFo cause as I am, cookies sounded like just the thing to carry me through while also giving me something to share with you!
So, back to squirrels. The other day I was grocery shopping and noticed a darling face grinning at me from the shelf. How could I resist this face?
Especially when I turned the jar around and saw this:
I knew there was some reason that I needed to have such a cool product available, so I purchased it and soon decided it required some cookie-ing.
There are a few people in my family who have problems with peanut butter. Although they aren’t allergic, it disagrees with them. Peanut butter cookies are a favorite of mine, so I can’t imagine what a bummer it is to be without them.
There are some people in my family with a squirrel phobia as well, but I’m fairly certain that’s unrelated to the peanut issue. They once had a traumatic run in with some squirrels from the rough side of town who approached their car in a menacing fashion, or so I heard. Words were exchanged… in the car, of course, between the passengers who were concerned about the suspiciously organized band of squirrels.
I’m not sure what tipped them off that these squirrels were trouble since I wasn’t there. Fortunately, they got out of there before things escalated Anchorman-style. They’ve avoided close contact with squirrels ever since. I’m hoping they’ll be able to reconcile themselves to this peanut/squirrel compromise cookie I’ve created.
On another note, when my husband and I were at the Grand Canyon this past spring, people were allowing squirrels to drink from their water bottles despite signs like this:
Those squirrels were clogging up paths while they posed for pictures. There were a couple of places where it was hard to get to the vista point because there were so many tourists mobbing the squirrels like paparazzi. I didn’t take a picture on principle and because I see squirrels every day around here, but it was quite a scene.
Being a squirrel fan, I also follow Berkeley Squirrels on Facebook, getting my regular dose of cute squirrels doing all sorts of things while they study at Cal, probably majoring in Physics or Comparative Literature.
Needing some squirrel-like energy, I flung cookie ingredients together to give to you:
(100% vegan. Squirrels served as creative consultants, but, after fierce contract negotiations, they were well compensated.)
- ¾ cup whole wheat flour
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup old fashioned oats
- 1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
- ½ cup Earth Balance, softened
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup Wild Friends Chocolate Almond Butter with Sunflower Seeds, or regular Almond Butter
- ¼ cup agave nectar
- 2 tablespoons ground flax seed whisked with 6 tablespoons hot water
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup chocolate chips
- ½ cup craisins
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds
Blend the flours, baking powder, and oats in a bowl. Set aside.
In another bowl, mix the brown sugar, Earth Balance, and salt using a hand mixer. Add the agave and vanilla, blend. Next add the ground flax/water mixture, mixing thoroughly.
Combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients and mix completely. Fold in the chocolate chips, craisins, and sunflower seeds.
Preheat your oven to 300 while your dough chills in the fridge for about 20 minutes.
Drop rounded tablespoons on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until the cookies are lightly browned at the very edges. I liked the ones that I left in long enough that they were a bit crispy, but if you like a softer cookie, you may want to take them out at the 20 minute mark (or sooner, depending on your oven).
These make an unusual and flavorful cookie. I liked the mix of textures and the salty sweet flavor. They’re heaven when dipped in chocolate almond milk.
I’m off to work. I’ve eaten half my sandwich and, ahem, several cookies. They’re giving me just the kick I need to keep me going as I wrap up my work for the evening.
With the (rumored) inscrutability of a squirrel, I’m not telling anyone here what’s in the cookies. But, of course, that isn’t stopping anyone from devouring them. Quickly. Maybe even too quickly.
So, I’ve got to dash now, MoFo-ers. I’ve gotta get back to work. But first, I need to go grab a few more cookies and squirrel them away for later, just in case.