Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Mint Cookies

It's baking-day today, and we are happily making cookies to share with church & family under the pretense that using the oven will cause the furnace to run less. As I formed the last sheet of cookies, I started wondering how many substitutions, omissions & changes must you make to a recipe before you can claim it as your own? Now I'm not talking about entering a contest with my recipes, or selling them in a cookbook or anything else nearly that professional... but here, on my own blog, when does an altered recipe become MY recipe?

Take my absolute favorite cookie recipe, for example. These cookies started from THIS recipe from my favorite food-blogger, the Gluten-Free Goddess. Except that I halved the baking soda. And omitted the salt. And added extra cocoa powder. And cut out ALL the white sugar. And used flax instead of egg-replacer. And made them half-size, which of course changed the baking time.

Now honestly, these started out as Karina's cookies. And honestly, I still consider them to BE hers... or, at least, inspired by hers. But at this point anyone making these cookies by HER recipe will have something radically different from what I make. Does this make the recipe mine? Hers? OURS???

Does it really matter WHOSE recipe it is when we're discussing a cookie so positively toe-curling delicious that my kids are willing to make them all by themselves if I don't have the time to be in the kitchen? Probably not. The point is, whether you make them her way or my way... this is the BEST chocolaty-minty cookie I've ever had with OR without gluten! Try them! Try them both ways! Create your own version if you prefer, but if you need a new gluten-free VEGAN Christmas cookie recipe... this is IT!

To make these "my way" you will need:

1 cup buckwheat flour
1/2 cup rice flour
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
2/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup ground flax (I like to grind it VERY fine so it doesn't add texture)
2/3 cup Spectrum shortening
2 Tbsp molasses (the darker the better, baby!)
3/4 cup chocolate soy or almond-milk (I LOVE the unsweetened Almond Breeze!)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp peppermint extract
1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips.

Combine the dry ingredients, then slowly add the wet ingredients. Hand-mix in the chocolate chips, and chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour. Preheat oven to 350F & form measured-tablespoon balls of dough onto unprepared cookie sheets. Flatten to roughly 1/2" and bake for 8 minutes. Let them cool for 5 minutes before removing from the sheets. Makes ABOUT 40 cookies.

As if these cookies aren't good enough straight from the oven, their real character is brought out the next day... the longer they sit, the stronger they get! If you can manage to freeze a batch, they will be unbelievably peppermintylicious upon thawing... and don't crumble to bits! Enjoy!

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