Saturday, December 3, 2011

Dream Cookies and Snackable Gifts

We've talked more than once about homemade gifts being the best kind. I haven't stopped believing that for a second -- especially when it was my best friend's milestone birthday. But not just any ol' batch of cookies would do for this birthday -- it had to be special.

And these cookies definitely were! After some fruitless internet searches and a quick and painless phone call to one of our favourite coffee adventure shops, I was able to make a re-creation of this moist, rich, vegan, gluten free cashew cookie that we couldn't stop talking about since the summer. Sweets from the Earth -- you rock! A cookie recipe with on 5 ingredients that's vegan and gluten free?! Awesome. I even found a website useful measurements. Score! They were delicious and fleeting!

Cashew Dream Cookies
inspired by Sweets from the Earth; recipe via Madcap Cupcake makes about 20 cookies

1 cup of smooth cashew butter
1/4 cup of silken tofu (about a third of a package of mori-nu)
1/2 cup of sugar
1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
pinch of salt

1. In blender, mini-chopper or food processor, blend the tofu until very smooth. Pour into a large mixing bowl.

2. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. The mixture will be really thick and a bit hard to mix at first, but will eventually become smooth and cookie-dough-like.

3. Drop spoonfuls on a cookie sheet and flatten slightly with a fork. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes.

4. Cool completely on the cookie sheet before removing -- this is important or the cookies will fall apart!

Oh yeah! I also included as part of the birthday package, some maple rosemary glazed nuts. There are tons of recipes out there, but I didn't really follow any specific one. These are totally addictive and beautiful when packed in a jam or mason jar. Edible gifts are the best!

Maple Rosemary Glazed Nuts

2 cups of mixed nuts of your choice (I used cashews and almonds)
1 teaspoon of crushed, dried rosemary
1 big pinch of salt
a few good grinds of pepper
1/2 teaspoon of chili powder
1 tablespoon of canola oil
3 tablespoons of maple syrup

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the rosemary, salt, pepper, chili powder, canola oil and maple syrup until well-combined.

2. Add in your nuts and mix until everything is coated.

3. Pour the nuts out onto a cookie sheet and bake at 350, turning frequently, for about 20-30 minutes, or until the nuts are deep brown.

4. Cool completely before packaging.

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