Fat Rascals

Fat Rascals, a great after-school treat

Mornings, I watch a boy trudge up the street on his way to school.

He’s maybe nine. His backpack hangs low, his head bends downward. Delaying the inevitable, he kicks at leaves, a rock, the curb.

Afternoons, I watch the same-but-different boy head down the street toward home. His steps are quick, his shoulders thrown back, his face lifts to the sun. Still heavy, the backpack now bounces.

School may be hard for this man-in-the-making. Perhaps his classmates tease or the learning comes slowly.

But my own wish for the nameless one is that his lively homeward steps mean he will be welcomed by both real and cookie hugs.

Maybe someday I’ll meet him on the street with cookies and together we’ll walk home so his Mom can be sure it’s okay for him to eat them.

Maybe then, we’ll become cookie friends and he’ll wave to the window as he passes, both directions, knowing his way is watched.

ALANNA's TIPS Raisins may be substituted for currants but are sweeter and larger. So if you use raisins, make the two-inch rounds or choose a larger cut-out. Before measuring flour for cookies or other baked goods, lightly aerate it with a spoon to counteract settling. You’ll use up to 25 percent less flour and the results will be noticeably lighter!
Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Share a favorite kids’ cookie at e-mail.


Mix, roll and cut: 20 minutes
Bake: 30 – 40 minutes
Makes 18 two-inch round cookies or 5 dozen mini stars
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup butter, cut in six pieces, softened
  • 2/3 cup currants
  • 2 – 4 tablespoons milk
  • Additional sugar for topping

Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a large mixing bowl. With your fingers, rub the butter into the dry mixture until crumbly. Stir in the currants and enough milk to produce a soft dough. Gather the dough to form a ball.

Lightly dust a flat work surface with flour. With a rolling pin or glass bottle, roll the dough into a disc about ½ inch thick (or 1/4 inch for mini stars). Cut the dough in two-inch rounds with a cup (or use a small star-shaped cookie cutter for the mini stars).

Brush off the excess flour and arrange the cookies an inch apart on a baking sheet. Sprinkle the cookies with sugar and bake at 400F until golden, 16 – 20 minutes (or about 9 minutes for mini stars).

NUTRITION ESTIMATE For 18 cookies, per cookie: 141 Cal (45% Fat); 7g Tot Fat; 18g Carb; 0g Fiber; 42mg Sodium; 19mg Cholesterol, Weight Watchers 3 points
For 60 cookies, per cookie: 42 Cal (45% Fat); 2g Tot Fat; 5g Carb; 0g Fiber; 12mg Sodium; 6mg Cholesterol, Weight Watchers 1 point

More After-School Treats for Kids

Explore all the back-to-school recipes, ones like ...(click a photo for the recipe)
Oatmeal Raisin Cookies Cut-Out Cookies, here, Frosty Christmas Trees Autumn Pumpkin Bread

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I loved this ... post as well as recipe. I hope you did walk him home. xoxo

I was so touched by the story of the little boy and his dejection in the a.m. and his joy in the p.m., possibly going home to cookies and a hug.

Thank you, I live in the country, and have no one that walks by my window. They are all at their corners or in front of their farm roads waiting for the school bus. One of the very few disadvantages of living in the country.

But I do remember my childhood and teen years in walking the two or so miles in Minnesota weather and having my busy Mom handing me hot chocolate in cold weather or popcorn as a treat when I walked in the door. It didn't happen every day, but often enough to give me a special feeling, as the oldest, for a few minutes of her time.

Thank you for helping me re-live the memory. It was a semi-sweet memory as she has now been gone for 7 years and I can no longer tell her how much it meant to a girl growing up, and now 66 years old.
For the longest time, I dreaded school too - it always helped when Mom left me little treats in my lunchbox!
What a touching story about the little boy, dejected in the morning on his way to school, and happy coming home. School is not a happy place for so many little boys. They are not developmentally equipped for so many of the demands that the public schools make of them. I was a school social worker for many years, and always loved my so-called "bad boys," who were nothing more than active little boys who needed plenty of free play out of doors, and the opportunity to learn actively.

I can't believe that I have posted 3 comments in a row on one blog! Never happens. Great, well-written blog.
Susan, Thank you so much for taking the time to comment, yes, three times in a row! I can tell, you're after cookie recipes.

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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna