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Starting the School Day With Soy

October 26, 2011
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Get the school day off to a good start with healthy breakfasts that pack in the nutrients but don't take a lot of time to prepare. The Soyfoods Council website offers simple recipes for breakfast smoothies that combine protein from soy, vitamins from fruit and great taste.

Breakfast-in-a-glass may taste like a treat to kids, but these soy-rich shakes and smoothies offer parent-pleasing ingredients.

The Frosty Strawberry Shake combines orange juice, silken tofu, bananas and strawberries. The Berry Secret Smoothie is a stealthy-healthy drink that has kids sipping fruits and vegetables. The "secret" ingredients are spinach, cherry-berry blend frozen berries, vanilla soy milk and orange juice.

For after-school snacks, check out the new brochure, "50 Kid-Friendly Ideas Featuring Soyfoods," from the Soyfoods Council. Among the suggestions you'll find a selection of dips to complement fresh fruit and vegetables.

No-Cook Caramel Dip, for example, is made in a blender with a combination of silken tofu, brown sugar and lemon juice. It's a great accompaniment for fresh apple and pear slices. For Ranch Tofu Dip, combine soft silken tofu, Ranch seasoning mix and reduced-fat mayonnaise. Then put out a plate of fresh radishes, celery and carrot sticks and watch them disappear.

On busy days, offer convenient snacks like edamame in the pod, soy yogurt, chocolate-covered edamame or soy bars. It's also easy to keep the cookie jar filled with simple bake-ahead cookie recipes from the Soyfoods Council. The brochure, "Cookies for Any Occasion," provides cookies with an improved nutrition profile, including Toffee Bars and Almost Vegan Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Cookies.

For these and other snack ideas from the Soyfoods Council, go to:

Caramel Dip

6 oz. firm silken tofu

1/4 tsp. salt 

11/2 tsps. lemon juice 

1 cup brown sugar

Mix all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Refrigerate.

Serve with fresh fruit.

Almost Vegan Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/2 cup soy flour 

1/2 cup all-purpose flour 

1/4 cup powdered sugar 

1/2 tsp. baking powder 

pinch salt 

1 cup semisweet chocolate chips, divided 

1/4 cup soy oil 

3 Tbsps. water 

1 tsp. vanilla extract 

1 tsp. sugar  

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°.

Sift the soy flour, all-purpose flour, powdered sugar, baking powder and salt into medium mixing bowl. Stir in 1/2 cup of the chocolate chips.

Melt the second 1/2 cup of chocolate chips in the microwave or in bowl over hot water. Stir in oil, water and vanilla. Stir melted chocolate mixture into flour mixture until well-blended.

Using a 1-ounce cookie scoop, or by rounded teaspoonfuls, drop cookies onto parchment or silicone-lined baking sheet. Using back of a fork, press down twice to create a crisscross pattern.

In small bowl. stir sugar and cinnamon together. Sprinkle a pinch over each cookie.

Bake 10 minutes. Remove from baking sheet. Let cook 2 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

Makes 1 dozen cookies.

Note: You can blend the soy oil with olive oil depending on how much of a background olive oil flavor you like. It is almost vegan because the chocolate does have a small amount of milk product in it.

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