Sunday, 25 March 2012

Friendly Cookies

Everyone loves cookies, right? But they can be loaded with fats and sugars and white flour that makes us have a sugar high then a terrible crash. Just because something is vegan does not automatically mean it is healthy. This is why I love Dreena Burton’s cookbooks so much (her new one is released in the UK at the end of the month and I am doing a wee wee dance in anticipation because all my lucky US peeps have gotten theirs already!)

Anyway, her baking uses wholesome wholegrain flours and has reduced sugar. But I was looking at this recipe from her cookbook The Everyday Vegan and I saw a recipe for Bill Friendly Cookies. Bill apparently eats no refined sugar and so these are perfect for him. Also the main flour was oat four made from grinding oats in your food processor until they form a course flour. I figured this would be great for me as gluten free baking can be a bit of trial and error and I still tolerate oats really well. But I adapted it to make it more gluten free and cut back the oil by half (and it wasn’t all that much oil to begin with anyway.)

Here is my interpretation of these friendly cookies.

Preheat oven to 180C/350F

Dry ingredients:
1 cup ground oats (grind one cup of oats in your food processor until it forms a course flour)
2 TB flour (I used 1 TB quinoa and 1 TB teff flour to make it GF but feel free to use regular flour as she did)
2 TB sunflower seeds (she called for 2 TB nuts but that seemed like it would be about 4 nuts so I did seeds to fit more in)
1 TB chocolate chips
1 TB dried cranberries
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp stevia (which in my stevia is equal to 2 tsp of sugar. I might next time go wild and do ½ tsp stevia)

Liquid ingredients:
1/3 cup raisins
1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (One orange for me was a scant 1/3 cup and I just topped up the measuring cup with a slosh of milk)
1 ½ TB oil (she used 3 TB I felt 1 ½ was plenty)

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl and then puree the raisins and OJ in the blender until the raisins are not raisin-y anymore. Add the wet to the dry and stir. It was still a bit dry so I added a few sloshes of milk and then stirred in the oil to mix.

Drop by rounded TB on a pan lined with parchment paper and bake for 14-16 minutes.

These cookies were really good. Hardly sweet at all really. The wet dough tasted more orange-y than the cooked ones but it was still really good. Next time I might add in a few drops of orange oil to try to keep that orange flavour. I might even go wild and sub cocoa powder for the GF flour!

If you are looking to make you go into a diabetic coma then this is not what you want. If you are looking for something with wholegrain to lower your cholesterol and sweetened with fruit to make it diabetic friendly then this is your cookie.  Not being overly sweet you really notice the natural nuttiness of oats and the tang of the cranberries and the crunch of the sunflower seeds and then pop of sweet with the chocolate chips.

Sometimes less sugar can be sweet.

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