Back in the good old days when schools believed cooking is actually a life skill, and we had classes called "Home Ec" we learned to make cookies called "Raggedy Robins." Miss Mosser was my Home Ec teacher and I owe her a lot, actually. She was a very petite young teacher with an older personality. She was fun, too. She instilled good kitchen habits, like cleaning the kitchen after the dishes were done, and making sure even the sink was dry. She also knew that the days when we made tasty treats there might be guys hanging around the door and she was a good sport about it.
These are exceedingly easy and a good call for a sweet treat when it's too hot to heat up the oven, since they are truly no-bake cookies. I recently got the notion that we could make a better version with just a few tweaks.
I have no idea about the origin of the name or the cookie recipe itself. If you Google the name Raggedy Robins you'll find an unlimited number of sites offering the same recipe with no attribution.
Here's an improved version. I decreased the sugar by 1/4 C, used dairy-free ingredients, added flax seed for minerals, fiber.
The idea here is improve on this super easy cookie by adding some nutrition to it, and upgrading the ingredients. This is my favorite vanilla, it's super rich and the company goes beyond "fair trade" to improve the economic opportunities for Madagascar.
Madécasse Vanilla - extracts are crafted using the "two-fold" extraction method resulting in a concentrated, deep vanilla. It comes from Madagascar where 85% of the plant and animal life on Madegascar exists no where else on earth and only 10% of the original forest still exists. Madécasse is working to bring delicious products to market while preserving the local economy and biodiversity.
- 1/4 C soy milk
- 3/4 sugar
- 1/8 C unsweetened cocoa (we use Ghiardelli)
- 1/4 C EarthBalance margarine (you could sub butter if you like)
- 1/2 C peanut butter ( I love Justin's)
- a good pinch of salt
- 1 TBSP Golden syrup (avail. at Whole Foods, fantastic for holiday pies, too.)
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla
- 1 C rolled oats
- 1/2 C Kamut flakes (OR brown rice cereal)
- 2 TBSP ground golden flax seed (omega 3s and lignans, plus fiber)
- 2 TBSP coconut flakes (I like Let's Do Organic brand)
- 3 TBSP chopped roasted peanuts
- Line cookie sheets with parchment (be sure that they'll fit in the fridge!)
- In a heavy saucepan, over medium heat, melt soy milk, sugar, cocoa, and margarine. Bring mixture to a boil and stirring a few times to combine.
- Once it comes to a boil, let it boil a full 90 seconds. (When we made them in junior high school they always came out too sweet and grainy, probably we rushed this stage.)
- In a medium bowl, combine oats, crisp rice cereal, ground flax seed, coconut flakes, peanuts. Mix to combine.
- When the cocoa-sugar mixture has boiled, pull the pot off the heat, dump in your peanut butter, salt, vanilla, golden syrup, and whisk it to smooth it out.
- Pour mixture over dry ingredients and stir to combine.
- Use a small ice cream/cookie scoop to drop balls onto parchment. Refrigerate for at least an hour.
Better ingredients and better technique made for better cookies. Thanks Miss Mosser!
Can't tell you how many this makes because they disappear as they're chilling in the fridge and so soon after, I've never rememberd to count the full batch. These are also good ones to make with kids, just be careful with the hot cocoa-sugar mixture. Otherwise pretty simple.