Back in December, I wrote about getting a new cookbook, Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar. I said I would let you know what I thought after trying out some of the recipes for Christmas. Today seems like the day, since some of my writing buddies are lusting after Dunkin Donuts AND I made the Banana Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies this morning. Now, if I were Shaddy, I would accompany this post with lovely photos of my baked goods. But I’m not, so I’ll just go with words.
I’ll start with the Banana Oatmeal things, which for purely aesthetic reasons I shaped into scones rather than big lumps. They are good for breakfast, filled with bananas, whole wheat, oats, nuts, dried cranberries, etc. They’re sweetened with brown rice syrup and agave nectar, so none of that sugar high (that’s a good thing, right??), which makes them pretty expensive as well as pretty healthy. Alas, no multi-colored jimmies (that’s New England for sprinkles) on top, though. I’ll probably make them again. The recipe made a ton and I froze most of them. But they weren’t as much fun as the Christmas goodies.
As for the Christmas goodies: I made Chocolate Chip Chai Spice Shortbread, which were slightly better in theory than in practice. I think I sliced them too thick, and I also think my cardamon is too old. I also don’t think I’ll make them again, but they definitely weren’t bad. There are just too many other things to bake!
The Chocolate-Bottom Macaroon Cookies were a HUGE hit. Yummy, like baked Mounds bars. Only change I would make next time would be to double the almond extract. Kitchen Sink Chocolate Biscotti might not have a glamorous name, but they were super-delicious. I used dried cranberries, dried mango, and walnuts as my add-ins to a very deep, rich dark chocolate batter. Another keeper. Finally, Roll-and-Cut Sugar Cookies. These were also wonderful, especially with some Demerrara sugar sprinkled on top of each. I have a huge collection of cookie cutters and I tried to use most of them for these!
For years, my holiday baking involved massive amounts of butter, eggs, sugar, all that yummy stuff. But it is possible to make completely delicious goodies without most of that. Of course, I also made a big batch of pralines for some of my family — crammed with butter, brown sugar, white sugar, cream, pecans.
That’s it! One thing about finding recipes on the Internet, which I usually do, is that when I revert to a cookbook, I don’t have the 300 reviews that give me some idea of whether or not the recipe is worth trying. So if anyone reading this wonders whether this cookbook is worth buying, I say yes. I also recommend the recipes I tried. Let me know if you’ve tried anything else from it — I might try it on my next baking run!