05 December 2009

A Cookie Invasion--Just in Time for the Holidays

Unable to wait any longer for a copy of Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero's Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar (2009), I recently found myself yet again at the book shop with the sole purpose of purchasing another vegan cookbook.  As the cashier completed my transaction, he inquired in typical small-talk fashion how I'd be spending the rest of my particularly sunny afternoon.  "Baking vegan cookies?" he asked.  "No, not today," I replied.  I was in between engagements and would likely have neither time nor energy for any kitchen activity that day.  But soon, I thought.  December is, after all, the heart of the winter holiday season and the month for cookies and all things sweet.  I plan to make a short visit up north in a couple of weeks as well, so cookie gifts are definitely on the horizon.

It turns out that I didn't bake anything that day, but in the past week I did try out a few Vegan Cookies recipes.  I have to test a few before giving any cookies out, right?  That was my excuse for all of the baking that's been going on in the kitchen this week, despite being pretty much certain that I would like them all from the start.  And so far, I have enjoyed all that I've tried (consumed in moderation, of course).  Once really cannot go wrong with cookies.  Here are the results of my week of cookies:

Sweet Potato Blondies
This recipe was perfect for using up leftover Thanksgiving sweet potatoes.  I used toasted pecans rather than walnuts.

Big Fat Crispy Rice Squares
They were a bit crumbly--maybe next time I'll make more of the syrup mixture to glue the rice together--but the taste was indeed reminscient of the non-vegan favorites from childhood.

Tahini Lime Cookies
I really enjoy the flavor of sesame and the limes I had on hand were about to take a turn for the worst, so I figured it was time to make these sesame-lime morsels of goodness.  In addition to the sesame seeds called for in the recipe, I sprinkled lime sugar on top of the cookies before baking for that extra sparkle and kiss of lime.

Deluxe Cocoa Brownies
I'm a sucker for a fudgy brownie.  These were indeed fudgy, rich, and perfect with a hot cup of strong coffee.

I seem to have gravitated toward the bar cookie section of the book, and Vegan Cookies has not disappointed me.  The cookbook also has plenty of drop (the Tahini Lime Cookies being one tasty example), filled, and cut varieties, which I'll probably stick to when diving into official holiday baking next week, for the practical purposes of packaging and travel.

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