22 December 2012

Dark Cookies, Light Hearts

A cool, dark, yin-tastic mint cookie complements a cup of ginger tea while surviving the Virginia DMV and driving late on Solstice.  Interstate 70 East makes for a lovely late night drive because of its relative emptiness, with the lights of Baltimore polluting the sky to the east.  Spending Solstice with friends--and making new friends--truly welcomes the light to the world and helps me commit to allowing more light into my life.  Light, grace, positive energy--whatever you call it--is always available to us.  We work on letting go of all that we do and think that blocks its presence in our lives.

I modified the melty mints to make them a more balanced, stable cookie with dates and coconut sugar. Sure, they could probably replace a cup of coffee with the caffeine from the cocoa and chocolate, but they're rich enough to satisfy with just one cookie.

Attack of the Melty Mint Clones

Modified from this very blog

1 cup dates, soaked

1/2 cup soaking water
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup sorghum flour

3/4 cup brown rice flour
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/2 cup cocoa (I used black cocoa for we must be Goth)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon Kosher salt
dash cinnamon

1 3-ounce bar vegan, GF mint chocolate, broken into 24 pieces

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silpats and set aside.

In a food processor or blender, blitz the dates, water, coconut oil, coconut sugar, and vanilla until uniformly combined and the dates are obliterated.

In a large bowl, sift together the flours, cocoa, xanthan gum, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix well. The batter will be sticky. Dip a 2-tablespoon cookie scoop in water and drop the cookies onto the baking sheets. DO NOT FLATTEN. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until the cookies appear dry and firm. Immediately remove from the oven and press a square of chocolate into the cookies. Let cool on the baking sheet for 30 minutes before removing to a rack to cool completely. Let the chocolate harden overnight before storing in an airtight container. Since these are softer than the originals, they will need refrigeration after a day.

My uncle came downstairs later on Thursday and he asked me if the cookies were vegan, gluten-free melty mints.  He recognised them without prompting!

This year I made cookies and desserts so moderate I can eat most of them for breakfast.

Aunt Mary Crea Tribute cookies
Undead Gingerbread
Apple Gingerbread Coffins

 S'mores bars (updated)

Attack of the Melty Mint Clones
Chocolate Quinoa Bars

If you find your holidays are hellidays, here is a Huffington Post article about holiday stress and how you can compassionately deal with it.  My post from last year might also be useful to you as you commit to excellent self-care, so you can better care for others, this holiday season.

Let's be the light!

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