The Nature’s Yucky! three-book childrens non-fiction series features animals doing what we humans perceive as gross behaviors. My co-author Karen Shragg and I then describe how these yucky actions help the animals survive.
Karen likes to cook and does a lot of experimenting, whipping meals together. Since she likes cooking so much, we include a kid-friendly recipe in every book. In our first book, Nature’s Yucky!: Gross Stuff that Helps Nature Work, we talk about coprophagy – that is when animals eat scat, informally known as poop. Wild and domestic rabbits do this. And yes, this is really yucky! By re-eating their droppings, the rabbits can squeeze out any left-over nutrition, especially in the winter when high quality food is not available.
So we present, as an antidote to fancy, charming, holiday cookies: Scat Cookies. (As you read the recipe, you will discover they are really chocolate-chip cookies.)
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1−1÷2 cups white sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2⁄3 cup cocoa powder
- ¾ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup peanut butter chips
Preheat oven to 350° F.
In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until light and fluffy. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Stir the flour mixture into the butter mixture until well blended. Mix in the chocolate and peanut butter chips.
Lightly butter your hands. Roll the dough into scat shapes. Place smaller, rounded scat cookies, such as rabbit scat on one cookie sheet and larger, rolled and twisted scat cookies, such as mountain lion scat, on another cookie sheet. That way you can bake the two sheets for different lengths of time if needed.
Bake 8 to 10 minutes, keeping an eye on the smaller scat cookies so they don’t burn.
Happy scat snacking!