Archive | August, 2011

Vegan Chocolate-Brazil Nut Cookies

10 Aug

I know you’re asking why brazil nuts. Why don’t people use brazil nuts in baking? Why don’t many people eat brazil nuts? I happen to like brazil nuts and I’m sick of them being discriminated against. Is it because they’re large? Do they taste too nutty and delicious for you? Is it because they’re ridiculously high in fat? Brazil nuts have feelings too. On the inside, they’re sweet, and full of things like calcium, selenium, potassium, and protein and they want to be chosen for consumption once, twice or even thrice a week like all the other nuts out there.

What, now you’re judging these cookies because of the fact that they’re vegan? Just because they don’t have butter or eggs in them, doesn’t mean they can’t deliver large amounts of yum. Why don’t you just look past their weird, chubby exterior, and take a bite? What’s that? You just died? Are you in heaven? That’s what I thought.

Maybe you should have more faith next time, and support those who have a bad reputation for no reason at all.

Why do I like baking vegan treats? I’ll tell you why. I crave cookies on a regular basis. I do not, however, leave butter out at room temperature in advance. I do not always enjoy digging for my hand beater. I do not like having to worry about getting sick off of raw eggs when I consume large amounts of cookie dough. Vegan treats never cause me any grief. Straight up, healthier for you ingredients. Yummy outcomes. It’s a win win baking situation. I like winning.

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Rosemary-Cheddar Shortbread

7 Aug

I feel really sorry for people who cannot consume cheese. Like really really….

The grilled cheese sandwich was probably the greatest sandwich ever invented. Pizza just wouldn’t be the same without it…

My grapes would be really sad if they didn’t have cheese beside them…

A few weeks ago I visited the Cheese Boutique in Toronto. I almost peed myself. I was in cheesy heaven! I bought some cheese…(obviously)..

I had plans for the cheese I bought, however, I consumed it all before I got the chance to make anything out of it. Not a big deal….just unfortunate. So I went out and got myself some aged cheddar. Perfect.

My rosemary bush outside in the garden is getting a little out of hand…hence the rosemary.

These shortbreads? Amazing snack. Sinful, but in moderation, with a little bit of apple jam or a cup of grapes….heavenly!

Food processor is definitely the way to go. It’s a one step process.

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Bitter Almond Cupcakes….in a jar?!

5 Aug

I don’t even know where to start…

Do I mention the fact that I put cupcakes in jars, or the fact that I made a super yummy bitter almond cake that’ll blow your mind?

I’ll begin by talking about the almonds. Bitter almonds. Months ago at work I was introduced to them. Have you ever eaten a bitter almond? Don’t…

My chef and I tried one each for the first time. It makes your tongue numb….and makes you hate life for a few minutes. They are some potent suckers, to say the least.

HOWEVER.

Mix them with a larger ratio of regular almonds, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for deliciousness.

We have a flourless chocolate brownie recipe at work. He’s our homeboy…our rock…our go-to-guy for times when we don’t know what else to turn to. We use it in cheesecakes, ice cream cake, emergency caterings…it’s pretty fantastic.

I substituted almond butter (I ground up almonds and bitter almonds into a paste in a food processor) for the chocolate in the recipe and kept the rest the same. The result was a cakey, fluffy miracle. I felt that it was better suited in the cake category…hence the use of it as a cupcake.

The cupcake in a jar was my way of taking the awkwardness out of giving someone a cake. I’m an awkward person. I’ll admit it! I just reek of awkwardness. I really do like baking things for people though. That is where it gets awkward. “Hey….happy birthday…I baked you this cake…it’s pretty big and iced and I have it on this plate….you can take it with you…okaaay….byeee!” So when it was the birthday of a friend at kickboxing, I had to keep it cool. I wanted to give her cake but not make it awkward for her to take home.

Cupcake in a jar. Win.

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Frozen Peanut Butter Chocolate Balls

1 Aug

I know, I know. I made you balls.

Frozen. Chocolate. Balls.

HOWEVER, they are healthy balls! Remember those sinful brownies from the other day? This is like their healthy cousin. The one that shows up to family gatherings with the vegetarian tofu scramble. Ok, that’s not selling these at all. I’m afraid their looks probably aren’t selling them either.

These are supposed to be a tasty, healthy treat. That’s all they’ve got going for them and that’s all I need to hear. Frozen bites of chocolate-y peanut butter-y good for you balls when you need a guilt-free pick me up.

No baking. No defrosting. No guilt. Only yum.

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