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Thursday, November 1, 2012

Sandy was here

No. I'm not going to repeat or describe what the storm brought. First of all, I'm incredibly thankful that it was mostly an annoyance for many of us, but my heart goes to all those who lost someone and/or something. 
Then, after plenty of time to hang out with the family, shred accumulated old mailing and trying to get creative, I was free to philosophize, and I decided to put the following out there:
I think that whoever names hurricanes should stop using normal people's names. I happen to know a couple of extremely nice women and men named Sandy. Why ruin it for them? I suggest that from now on, hurricanes should be named after famous movie villains.
Wouldn't it be way more effective to evacuate people by telling them that Freddy Krueger was approaching, instead of Sandy? Hannibal Lecter, Darth Vader, Cruella Deville, all those would really do it! People would run seeking shelter immediately. And... if they ever ran out of choices (which they won't), there are always options in Mexican soap operas, although Mayor Bloomberg may have a hard time pronouncing them (sorry, I love the man, but I'd happily volunteer to stand next to the woman translating his speech for the hearing impaired, and clearly summarize his points for the Spanish speaking population).
Besides all these deep intellectual thinking, I also used my hurricaition (I heard it, didn't come up with it, I'd never be that clever!) to keep my kids entertained and from hanging themselves from the Austrian chandelier that my ancestors brought from Russia to Mexico and then my grandmother somehow managed to bring to NYC. We made super healthy sushi (they hated it, but I thought I was a genius), we played board games, legos, soccer, wii, watched T.V., fought and made up, lots of crafting, just in time for my daughter's upcoming 8th birthday party, and we baked cookies.

I saw the original recipe in The Kitchn and thought it would make awesome cookies. However, ever since I opened Three Tablespoons, and started switching from conventional super processed ingredients to wholesome ones, I haven't been able to follow a single recipe as it's written. Even people often ask me if I could make them a decorated cake like in the good old days when I was making Dora The Explorers, flowers, trains and Curious Georges out of brightly (and artificially) colored fondant. It's hard to go back, although I have to be honest, when I do make them once in a very while, I enjoy it very much (but the guilt is heavy). All this to say that I changed the recipe of the cookies completely, but still, they were delicious and perfect for a home-bound afternoon.

(Not) Nutella Cookies



The original recipe calls for everyone's sinful favorite (unless they are allergic to nuts)​: Nutella. However, although it's understand​able why everyone loves it, I've found that Justin's chocolate-​hazelnut spread has way less sugar than the Italian brand (Nutella has 21g., while Justin's 7g.) and it's also amazingly delicious and has no artificial ingredient​s. It does contain palm oil, which I'm not the biggest fan of, but overall, it beats Nutella in nutrition, and since I don't personally like milk chocolate, Justin has won my palate, as it's dairy free. Another option would be making your own chocolate hazelnut spread. There are hundreds of recipes online. I've tried a couple, but my kids haven't become big fans, as they don't like the mildly coarse texture that results from home food-processors. Note that good quality nut spreads (and nuts) are expensive, but I see that as a pro, so you only bake these for special occasions. For people suffering nut allergies, feel free to use chocolate soy nut butter. It will work fine.

If I had had any raw hazelnuts during Sandy's stay, 1/2 cup of them, coarsely chopped, would have been a great addition to the recipe at the end of the mixing process... Hopefully for next time!

Ingredients

  • Vegan
  • Free of: eggs, dairy, soy, wheat. Use gluten free oat flour if gluten free is needed
  • Contains nuts

4 ounces (1/2 cup) virgin coconut oil, melted but not hot
3/4 cup chocolate-hazelnut spread
1/3 cup coconut palm sugar
2 teaspoons chia seeds, ground
3 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup whole oat flour (gf if needed)
1/4 cup amaranth flour *
1/2 cup cocoa powder (not Dutch-processed)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

*although a great addition, if you don't have/find amaranth flour, just substitute for another 1/4 cup oat flour.

Method

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl or the bowl of a standing mixer, cream with the paddle attachment the coconut oil, chocolate-hazelnut spread and coconut sugar.

Once mixed, add in ground chia, water and vanilla extract until incorporated.

Add at once oat and amaranth flours, cocoa, baking soda and salt.
Mix until the dough comes together.

Drop 1 tablespoon scoops onto the prepared pan, leaving 1 inch in between each cookie.

Bake for about 10 minutes. Let cool for 2 minutes and enjoy!

Cookies can be stored in an air tight container for up to 4 days.
They are soft, delicate, crumbly and slightly creamy with an intense chocolate flavor.

1 comment:

dori said...

Love the hurricane name idea - I always think of the nice person I know (my best friend from grade school's mom was a sweet loveable Sandy) - hurrah for Hurricane Haman!