It’s important for children to understand that not all treats are for them. Yes, we all want them. Treats=life. I want all the treats. I’ll be the first to admit it. If I see a macaron? MINE. Salted caramel anything? MINE. I’ll box you out in line to get there first. That’s just me being honest. Also honest? I worry-what if Mr. Mischief catches onto this game I’m playing by myself? So, I decided it was high time we baked for someone else for a change.
We spent the 4th of July in Crested Butte, Colorado and seriously had a glorious time. Oklahoma was a ripe old 100 degrees so we high-tailed it outta there. We had a blissful week with crisp temps, homemade donuts, and mountain sunsets. One of the downfalls of being away from home over my favorite holiday? Missing my puppies’ birthday. Eight years ago we found our labbie girls on the 4th of July when they were six weeks old. We think. They were little fluff balls, so we just guess-timated. Either way they were stupid cute. Postcard pups. Each year I bake them a cake with dog biscuits adorned across the top. One for each year they’ve been a part of our family (and hogging the bed). Since we missed the cake making this year I knew I had to make up for their missed birthday. I love making puppy cakes and they are super easy however, I didn’t want to deal with ovens and a three-year-old. No bake energy pops seemed like just the ticket. I ran this idea by my main man and he thought it sounded, “Oh my! That’d be cool mom!” Win.
So we set off on our pup-kin pop adventure. I always use pumpkin when making puppy treats. It helps to soothe upset tummies. I use peanut butter because they LOVE it. There are a lot of little steps for these balls but I promise and cross my heart they’re wicked easy to make. You can use any generic ingredients for these but I stepped up my A game and went the organic route. They are pampered pups after all. You’ll need a mixer this week. Mischief thought this was awesome! Something new and different if you will. He spooned 1 cup of pumpkin into the mixing bowl. Followed by ¼ cup of milk and ¼ cup of peanut butter. I showed him how to turn on the mixer and we set the timer for 2 minutes. I had to keep an eye on him at this point as he quickly moved the lever forward to HIGH speed and pumpkin batter started flying. Did he care? Duh, no. Next, we spooned 3 cups of oats into the bowl and mixed again until combined. I showed him how to use the ice cream disher and he started scooping. I had high hopes he would roll the dough to make the pops but he got very antsy about getting his hands covered in pumpkin. Mom to the rescue! At this point, he took over and directed me on my job. He scooped (or shoveled) as he called it. He shoveled, then handed me the dough to roll. Two bakers are better than one after all. He also got severely sidetracked by eating the peanut butter straight from the jar. Man after my own heart. After I rolled the dough into balls, I placed them into a bowl to coat with more oats.
We placed the pops in the fridge for about 15 minutes to set. Then, we had a puppy party. We all put on party hats and sang happy birthday to our birthday girls (one week late). They were less than impressed to be subjected to hats but they LOVED their treats. Loved loved loved. I have to admit, given the ingredients-I might have to try them for myself.
Early Childhood Lessons:
Cause and Effect
3 cups steel oats + extra to coat
1 cup pumpkin puree
¼ cup milk
¼ cup peanut butter
Yield: 1 and ½ dozen pops
Pour 1 cup of pumpkin puree into mixing bowl. Add ¼ cup of milk and ¼ cup of peanut butter. Mix on low speed for 2 minutes using the paddle attachment until smooth. Mix in 3 cups of oats till combined. Use 1-inch size ice cream disher to scoop dough. Roll into balls and cover with oats. Set in fridge to sit for 15 minutes.