“Love and magic”…That is what I told one of my managers tonight after he asked me how I made cookies and baked goods without eggs in them :).
Tonight is a really unusual night because I baked! As frequent readers know, I typically cook/bake on Sunday or Monday only, since those are my days off. However, tomorrow marks my last day at work. I have mixed emotions. Everyone always talks about how they would love to not have to work. Working gives me some feelings of accomplishment in addition to I have some great friends at work. I will have a lot of free time to work on my freelance stuff, but free time can also be dangerous for me. A lot of stuff will also be coming down the pipes in the remainder of the year, so I assume that everything will work out.
So why am I baking?! Tomorrow the awesome people at work are throwing a vegan-encouraged potluck. I told everyone that they didn’t have to bring something that is vegan, since its just little old me. Plus, I know it might make people go a little crazy :). I decided to make two new recipes which is really a shock, because normally I bring tried and true recipes. I am feeling dangerous though! So I made my version of Chocolate Covered Katie’s Love Muffins and Dreena’s Double Chocolate Almond Explosion Cookies
Double Chocolate Almond Explosion Cookies:
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1⁄4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1⁄2 tsp baking soda
3 tbsp almond slivers, toasted or not
3 tbsp non-dairy chocolate chips
1⁄4 cup unrefined sugar
1⁄4 tsp sea salt
1⁄3 cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1⁄2 tsp almond extract (optional)
1⁄4 cup organic canola oil (a little generous measure)
Preheat oven to 350°F. In a bowl, sift in the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and baking soda. Add the almonds, chocolate chips, sugar, and salt, and stir until well combined. In a separate bowl, combine the maple syrup with the vanilla and almond extracts, then stir in the oil until well combined. Add the wet mixture to the dry, and stir through until just well combined (do not overmix). Place large spoonfuls of the batter on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Take 1 or 2 chocolate chunks and a pinch or two of almonds and gently press into each cookie, flattening cookies a little. Bake for 11 minutes, until just golden (if you bake for much longer, they will dry out). Let cool for no more than 1 minute on the sheet (again, to prevent drying), then remove with a large spatula and transfer to a cooling rack.
Notes! I did not use the almond extract, mostly because I didn’t have any. I used mild olive oil instead of canola oil. I also didn’t toast the almonds. In Dreena’s original recipe, she uses some almonds and broken chocolate bars to press into the cookies. I didn’t do this, because I thought the cookies were delicious without them, but that is up to you. I of course tried one of these cookies and it was amazingly delicious. Not too sweet so the chocolate flavor came through. As I was eating it I was thinking that it would be delicious to put some orange zest in it. Yum.
1 3/4c. whole wheat pastry flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp Ener-G egg replacer
1/2 tsp salt
4 tsp unsweetened applesauce
1 c. almond milk (or other non-dairy milk)
1/2 c. sugar
Preheat the oven to 380 degrees. Combine all dry ingredients, then add the wet ingredients right before putting the mixture into the oven. Stir until just combined but don’t overmix. Scoop into non-stick or oiled muffin cups and cook 8-10 minutes or until they’ve puffed up. For optimum freshness, freeze all the muffins you aren’t planning on eating within two days. To reheat, microwave for 20 seconds.
Notes! So I took the liberty of making these a little more special. I made chocolate chip love muffins and PB and J love muffins. The chocolate chip love muffins just had chocolate chips in them, although I am wondering what else could be added to these. They were ok. The PB and J ones were a little more involved. I put a dab of the batter followed by a dab of organic strawberry jam and covered with another dab of batter. Then (this is my favorite part) I “iced” them with some natural PB! The flavors were wonderful! This was definitely my favorite option.
The PBJ Love Muffin:
The Chocolate Chip Love Muffin:
Whew! I’m now enjoying some PBS before hitting the hay and doing my routine day one more time.