Homemade Animal Crackers

Animal crackers in my soup
Monkeys and rabbits loop the loop
Gosh oh gee but I have fun
Swallowing animals one by one.

Certain foods make us more nostalgic than others. Like Fruit Stripe Gum. Although gum probably doesn’t actually count as food… but that is beside the point. The point is that Fruit Stripe gum makes me nostalgic. That fruity flavor which lasts all of 3.5 seconds… the temporary tatoo wrappers. Brings childhood right back to me. The only gum which would do so more would have to be Teaberry. I haven’t seen any of that stuff in years, but when I was a kid there was a gift-shop a block from my house that sold it. They also had candy lipstick. Haven’t seen any of that stuff for years, either. Apparently children these days aren’t interested in edible chalk made of sugar or in cheap gum. Shame.

Toast with grape jelly makes me a little nostalgic… once when I was perhaps 4 years old my Dad was making me toast with jelly and I was standing by watching him. The jelly jar slipped out of his hands and fell on my tiny four-year old toes. I can still remember sitting with my foot propped up, swaddled in a bag of ice while we watched Family Matters like it was yesterday.

Cherry tarts are another nostalgic food, and so are icing crackers (graham crackers with icing spread on them). I could go on and on, but I’ll spare you. Most people probably don’t relate to my nostalgic foods. We all have our own special childhood food memories. There is one, however, that a lot of us share….

Animal crackers. Both the kind that came in the little box with circus animals on it, and the ones that came in a bag with pink frosting.

If you share this animal cracker memory of mine, you are in luck today. A few weeks ago, I found a recipe for a home made version of the classic animal cracker and a few days ago I tried it out. They aren’t exactly like the store-bought goodies of my past, but they are tasty little critters (not too sweet by themselves, and more soft than crunchy.) They’re certainly enough to bring back a memory or two.

Props to How Sweet It Is, where I found this recipe.

Homemade Animal Crackers

 1/2 cup oats

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon honey

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 cup butter, softened

4 tablespoons buttermilk

Grind oats using a food processor or blender and add flours, salt and baking soda. Add butter and pulse until small crumbles remain. Add honey, vanilla and buttermilk, and mix until a dough forms.

Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Once chilled, flour surface and roll out dough. Cut cookies and place on a baking sheet.

Baking times will depend on the size of the cutter you are using and the thickness of the cookie. I baked mine for between 5 and 7 minutes.

Pink Icing Recipe

-Approx. 1/2 to 3/4 C powdered sugar
-1 to 2 tsp. milk
-1/8 tsp. vanilla
-Approx. 1 tsp. butter
-1 drop red food coloring

Mix together all ingredients, adjusting amounts as necessary. Carefully dip the face of the cookies into the icing.  Allow to harden before storing.



One thought on “Homemade Animal Crackers

  1. Elisa and I loved Fruit Stripe gum! There are so many nostalgic foods…I’m totally share the same opinions on this topic. One such is biscuits (like the kind you’d use for biscuits and gravy) just out of the oven with butter and grape jelly/jam. We’d eat them sitting in the corner of Mom’s kitchen on the vent on a cool winter evening waiting for Dad to come home. 🙂 Happy memories!

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