Sweet Treats!

January 14, 2019
This is about...
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        I ALWAYS MAKE THE SAME NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTION EVERY JANUARY 1ST. AND WHAT IS IT?---to get back to eating, simple, clean, healthy food. BUT AS ALWAYS, I DON'T WANT TO STOP CELEBRATING---JUST YET. I still want a few indulgent goodies before I totally give in to my New Year's promises. Unfortunately, sweet, gooey treats just don't fit into this fresh start. So how do I cross this great divide?
        WELL, I DO HAVE A FEW TRICKS UP MY SLEEVE, and these Vegan Spice Cookies are the perfect transitional sweet to get me there. They're thin, spicy, not too sweet and satisfyingly crispy. Plus, they're vegan with almonds and oats as a base, as well as being cane sugar-free by switching to coconut sugar and pure maple syrup.
        THERE IS ONE UNUSUAL TECHNIQUE I USE during the baking time. Halfway through I pull the pans out of the oven and bang the pans a few times on the counter or stovetop. That makes the cookies flop and deflate, letting them get extra crispy. I also use a food processor to whip the dough up in a flash, quickly delivering these UNDENIABLY DELCIOUS sweet treats with no sign of deprivation in sight.

LESSONS Learned:
1. If you don't have a food processor, you could sub in 6 Tablespoons of oat flour for the quick oats and combine everything in a mixing bowl. But the texture won't be exactly the same.
2. If you can, use gluten-free oats (not all oats are gluten-free), and these will be gluten-free too.
3. Make sure to rap the pan on the counter halfway through the cooking time.
4. Pay close attention near the end of the baking time. You want them to be a dark burnished brown, but not super dark or they'll burn.

Vegan Spice Cookies

Dry Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups almond flour
1/2 cup quick oats, gluten free if possible
1/4 cup Tablespoons organic coconut sugar
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
Wet ingredients:
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
6 Tablespoons coconut oil, melted
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Make the cookies:
        Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2-3 half size sheet pans with parchment. Reuse a pan if you don't have 3.
        Place all of the dry ingredients into the bowl of a food processor, and process until finely ground, about 1 minute. Add the wet ingredients and process until well combined, about another 30 seconds. Before scooping, stir in any stray maple syrup into the dough in the bowl of the processor.
        Alternatively you could stir together all of the ingredients in a medium size bowl using 6 Tablespoons of oat flour for the quick oats.
        Spoon or scoop 2 Tablespoons at a time for large cookies, 6 to a pan, or 1 Tablespoon mounds with 12 to a pan. Bake the cookies for 6 minutes, take out and band a few times on a counter or the stove. Rotate the pans top to bottom and back to front and bake for about another 7-9 minutes, until a dark burnished brown. Cool completely on the pans. They will crisp up as they cool.
        Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Makes 16 large or 32 small cookies. YUM!
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