Garam Masala Cookies

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Indian cuisine is one of my favorites because of the many warming spices used in their savory dishes.  I also love that there are so many different types of Indian vegetable dishes to choose from that are delicious and satisfying.  My husband enjoys Indian food, too.  He also loves having a cookie for his after-dinner dessert.  To change things up a bit and make things a little more exciting, I decided to mix the two together. I created an Indian-spiced cookie recipe that has a lot of texture, is oil-free, and low in fat and contains no refined sugar.

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My spice of choice in this recipe is garam masala.  In Hindi, “garam” means hot and “masala” means spices.  In Indian cuisine, garam masala is a blend of ground spices.  A typical Indian garam masala mix contains cinnamon, cloves, black and white peppercorns, turmeric, black and white cumin seeds, and black, brown, and green cardamom.  As you can imagine, the spice mix is pretty intense but in a very pleasant and beautiful way.

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When you throw garam masala into an oatmeal raisin and chocolate chip cookie with pistachios, you get a chewy, sweet and almost savory and umami cookie.  I hope you try it and enjoy it!

 

This cookie recipe was inspired by ingredients that Vitacost.com kindly sent to me. Click on the ingredient links to purchase the same ingredients I used to make my garam masala cookies. Click here for Vitacost.com savings.

 

Garam Masala Cookies

Time: 25 minutes

Makes 16 cookies

V, GF, DF, SF, CF

 

Ingredients

Wet:

½ Tbsp flax meal

1 ½ Tbsp filtered water

¼ cup unsweetened applesauce 

1Tbsp almond butter

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/3 cup plus 1 Tbsp coconut sugar

 

Dry:

2/3 cup rolled oats (gluten-free)

2/3 cup oat flour (gluten-free)

½ tsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

1/8 tsp xanthan gum, optional*

1/8 tsp fine sea salt

1 1/4 tsp garam masala

¼ tsp raw pistachios, roughly chopped

1/3 cup semi-sweet vegan chocolate chips

1/3 cup golden raisins

Please note: **the cookie will be less crumbly with the xanthan gum. If you don’t want to use it, feel free to omit it.

 

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.

2. In a small bowl, mix together the wet ingredients.  Set aside.

3. In a medium-large bowl, combine the dry ingredients and mix.

4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly to combine.

5. Fold in the pistachios, chocolate chips, and golden raisins.

6. Scoop out the cookies onto a half sheet pan, lined with parchment paper or a silpat mat, using a 1-ounce ice cream scoop or by measuring out 2 Tbsp balls. Flatten the tops of the cookies with your hand or a spatula.

7. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden. Allow them to sit on the half sheet pan for at least 2 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool.

8. Once cooled, store them in an airtight container.  Enjoy!

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Almond, Cherry, and Chocolate Biscotti

Photo Credit: Miranda Rivera

Photo Credit: Miranda Rivera

When a fellow vegan, Justine from England, requested that I create a gluten-free vegan biscotti recipe, I asked if she had any preferences or wanted anything specific in the recipe.  Justine proceeded to tell me that she desired chocolate chips.  So in developing this recipe, I knew I had to somehow incorporate chocolate chips.  Since I already have chocolate chips in so many of my dessert recipes I decided to change it up a bit.

I searched my pantry for inspiration.  The first thing I discovered is that I did not have anise extract, which the dominant flavor traditionally found in biscotti.  I did, however, have almond and vanilla extract.  I decided to make my own version of biscotti with a dominant almond flavor. To make things more exciting, I added a zing with lemon zest and a deep, sweet flavor of dried cherries.  Once twice-baked and cooled, I decided to give them a little dip in chocolate and they turned out quite nice, if I do say so myself.

I made two batches—one with coconut sugar and one with Stevia.  The coconut sugar turned the biscotti brown and the biscotti with Stevia retained a nice creamy, golden color.  Although I do like the creamy color of the Stevia version, the coconut sugar biscotti in my humble opinion tasted better.  The quality of the cookie dough was much easier to work with as well.  Please note, since there are nuts and cranberries in the dough, some of pieces that are cut prior to baking the biscotti the second time may crumble a little.  No worries though.  Just pop those broken pieces in your mouth, chew and savor the flavor.

Since I am no longer a coffee drinker, I honestly did not think enjoying a biscotti was still possible.  Boy, was I wrong.  They simply are crispy cookies dipped in a bit of chocolate.  Now, who doesn’t like that?

Feel free to try this recipe and make an ice “cream” biscotti sandwich, enjoy it with coffee or tea, or eat it all by its lonesome.  Biscotti can also be a perfect edible gift for your family and friends.

 

 Almond, Cherry and Chocolate Biscotti

Makes 14 – 15 cookies

Time: 50 minutes

Diet: V, GF, DF, SF, SRF

Ingredients

cookie:

¼ cup coconut oil, melted

1 ½ tbsp flax meal

4 ½ tbsp filtered water

½ cup coconut palm sugar

zest from half a lemon

1 tsp almond extract

½ tsp vanilla extract

1 2/3 oat flour

1 ½ tsp baking powder

1/8 tsp xanthan gum

¼ cup slivered almonds

1/3 heaping cup dried cherries

 

chocolate coating:

¾ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 tbsp coconut oil, melted

 

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.

3. In a medium bowl, beat together ¼ cup coconut oil, flax meal, filtered water, coconut sugar, lemon zest, almond and vanilla extracts until well-blended.

4. In a small bowl, combine and mix together flour, baking powder, and xanthan gum.

5. Stir into wet mixture to form a heavy dough.

6. Add almonds and cherries and combine well.

7. On the lined baking sheet, form into a log as long as the cookie sheet. Press down to ½ inch thickness. Bake for 25-27 minutes.

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8. Remove from the baking sheet and cook on a rack. When cookies are cool enough to handle, slice crosswise with a serrated knife into ½ inch slices.  Since there are almonds and cranberries, they may crumble a bit.

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9. Place slices cut side up on backing sheet. Bake for additional 7 minutes on each side.  Cookie slices should be lightly toasted.

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10. Allow cookies to sit on the baking sheet for at least 3 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

11. Make sure the cookies are fully cooled before dipping them in chocolate.  When the cookies are cooled, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

12. Melt 1 tbsp of coconut oil and the chocolate in a bowl over a double boiler by bringing a pot with 2 cups of water to a simmer and placing the bowl of coconut oil and chocolate on top of the pot, stirring constantly until it melts. Turn off the heat once it is almost fully melted. Wipe off any water from the bottom of the bowl and do not put any water in the melted chocolate or it will seize.

13. Dust off crumbs from the biscotti and either dip the biscotti and/or use a spoon to coat the bottom of the biscotti.  Place the dipped biscotti on the lined baking sheet, and place it in the refrigerator to set. Remove from the refrigerator once the chocolate is set and store in an airtight container.

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Enjoy!

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Chocolate Chai Cookies – Vegan and Gluten-free!

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Peyman loves his mom’s Persian cooking, and he especially loves her chocolate chip cookies.  Every week after our family dinners, his mom packs cookies for him.  As much as I love my mom-in-law and her cookies, they are not vegan or gluten-free and I am unable to enjoy them.   Consequently, I decided to create a gluten-free vegan chocolate chip cookie that is just as good as my mom-in-law’s.

In my search for a yummy recipe on Instagram, I came across a cookie that looked just like his mom’s, posted by @becauseyoureyoung.  The cookie’s reviews from her friends and co-workers were very positive.  I decided to give the recipe a try.

I do not love the raw batter’s taste or scent of garbanzo bean flour as they bake so I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome and couldn’t help myself from eating 3 cookies in one sitting!  Thank goodness for reviews.  These cookies are amazing!  They are basically chocolate chip cookies but with an Indian (East Asian) twist.

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I make these for my friends and family—they all love these cookies, even the pickiest of eaters!

I made a few slight adjustments to the recipe, but still, with the permission of @becauseyoureyoung, I will now share this recipe with you!  Hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

Please note:  they are addicting!  You can also reduce the sugar to ¾ cups plus 2 tbsp, if you’d like to cut down the sugar in this recipe.

 

Chocolate Chai Cookies – Vegan and Gluten-free!

Servings: 24

Time: 40 minutes

Brief: Chewy chocolate chai cookies are my favorite! They are grain-free, easy to make, and oh so good!

Diet: V, GF, GFV, DF, SF, NF

 

Ingredients

1/2 cup coconut oil

1 tsp vanilla

1/3 cup steeped chai rooibos tea*

1 cup coconut palm sugar

1/4 tsp sea salt

2 cups garbanzo bean flour

2 heaping tsp ground cinnamon

2 tsp baking powder

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Note:

*I use Yogi brand Chai Rooibos tea.

**I use Chocolate Dream dairy/gluten/soy-free semi-sweet baking chips

 

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. In boiling water, steep the chai rooibos tea for at least 3 minutes. Measure out 1/3 cup of tea.

3. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together the coconut oil, vanilla, tea, coconut palm sugar, and sea salt.

4. In a small bowl, combine the garbanzo bean flour, cinnamon, and baking powder and mix well.

5. Add the dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir well to combine.

6. Fold in the chocolate chips.  Chill the batter in the refrigerator for about 7 minutes prior to scooping. (The more loose your cookie batter is, the more they will spread when they bake).

7. Scoop 2-Tbsp cookie balls onto a half sheet pan, lined with a Silpat mat or parchment paper and press down to flatten them ever so slightly with your hand or a rubber spatula.  You should be able to fit 12 cookies onto a half sheet pan.

8. Bake until they start to just brown at the bottom, for 9-11 minutes, depending on how powerful your oven is.

9. Allow the cookies to rest on the half sheet pan for about 2-3 minutes besides transferring them to a cooling rack.

Note: This recipe makes 24 cookies total.  Enjoy and remember, enjoy everything sweet in moderation!

 

 

 

 

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