recipes and tips for better living

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Pinterest Cookies, Chia Trailblazers, & DIY Hemp-milk

I've stumbled upon about a bazillion renditions of these fruit and oat cookies on pinterest.  The concept is skip the flours, skip the refined sugars, skip the oils and butter, and use apple sauce, mashed bananas, oats, and dried fruits.  In theory it sounds good, but in the end there is definitely something missing.  


Fat tastes good, gives good mouth feel, and makes cookies yummy.  I know this from all the bad recipes i've made in the past while trying to widdle my waistline, but pinterest had me convinced otherwise.  I added a 1/2 cup of walnuts to my cookies anyway, and while they are definitely yummy and took me no time to devour, i chose to make my second batch with dried coconut, nuts, seeds, and dates.  

Welcome the Chia Trailblazer Cookie. 

The addition of fats was fabulous, and made them taste more like a soft granola cookie.  These make a great high energy snack, or on the go breakfast biscuit.  Recipes below.

As you know from my last blog, my boyfriend completed his first cleanse ever.  3 days straight on green juice.  I'm truly impressed.  I only made it two days before i was hovering over a pot of steaming carrots, my vegetable of choice to wash down the butter and salt i was desperately deprived of.

Good news came from the cleanse.  Boyfriend has a new found interest in health and while he's always been a fan of chia pudding, he's bananas over it right now.  I opened the container he'd made the night before only to realize it was un-scrapably empty.  What he was yet to learn is that you probably don't want to eat that much fiber rich chia pudding in one sitting.  Unknowingly he was still cleansing, tee hee.

Inspired by his new healthy ways, he asked me to help him make his first home made batch of hemp milk.

 I started by giving him this incredibly difficult shopping list:  "hemp seeds and dates."

Well we're one for two.  The hemp seeds arrived.  Thankfully i was able to find a few vagrant dates still lurking in my fridge-y from my last hot and heavy love affair with them.

DIY Hemp Milk:

1 cup hempseeds
7 cups pure water
5 pitted medjool dates
1/2 - 1 tsp vanilla extract

Simply blend everything together in a VitaMix or high-speed blender.
Strain it over a big bowl through a nut milk bag, paint strainer bag, or fine mesh strainer.
Store in an airtight pitcher in fridge, holds for about 4-5 days.

If you're inspired to make chia pudding blend in a few more pitted dates to make your milk really sweet, then add 3/4 cup chia seeds to about 5 - 6 cups of hemp milk (or I prefer almond milk).  You can sprinkle in cinnamon and a dash of sea salt to balance sweetness.  Stir it well, cover and refrigerate.  Check in a little bit and stir it some more.  It'll thicken up within an hour or so.  If you wait a while and it's not thick enough toss in a few more chia seeds and stir well again.  When serving you can add fresh fruit or superfoods like gojis and cacao nibs.

pinterest cookies and DIY hemp milk

Now back to these pinterest cookies.  Here was the first 'lower fat' run. 

Dry ingredients, put into a large mixing bowl:
1/2 cup walnuts with 1 Tbsp flax broken up lightly in the food processor.
2 cups of gluten free rolled oats
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup dried cranberries

Wet ingredients:
1/3 cup applesauce (i food processed 2 pink ladies without skin)
3 very ripe bananas peeled
1 date
1 tsp vanilla
blend all in food processor

Add wet ingredients into the dry.  Mix well.  If not wet enough add 1/4 cup of hemp or almond milk (i added the homemade hemp milk).  Put parchment paper on a baking sheet.  As you scoop cookies up squeeze them into a tight wad, and press and shape onto the baking sheet.

 Bake at 350 degrees for 15  minutes.  This yielded 12 large cookies.

Delicious...but i wanted something more dense, filling, and nutty.

So here's my second batch.

 They rock.  I would have loved to add chocolate chips or cacao nibs, but these were made for a 'clean food' potluck, so no refined foods/flours/sugars/stimulants/etc etc.

Chia Trailblazers Cookies

Mix together 1 Tbsp plus 2 tsp chia seed and 3 Tbsp of vanilla almond milk
stir well and let swell (will turn into a paste)

Mix all dry ingredients and set aside:
1 1/4 cup Gluten Free Oats
1 cup Himalayan Trail Mix (or a mixture of whatever seeds, nuts, and dried fruits you like)
1/2 cup shredded dried coconut
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon

In a food processor start your wet ingredients:
2 peeled and chopped medium pink lady apples (process into applesauce)
add 1 tsp vanilla extract
3 pitted medjool dates
3 med-large RIPE peeled bananas (they should have some brown spots)
blend together well to grind the dates down a bit (there may be a few chunks, that's fine)
Add in the chia paste and blend to combine

Pour your wet ingredients over top the dry, mix really well.  It will be somewhat wet looking, like this.

Lay out your parchment lined baking sheet and heat your oven to 350.
Take small dallops of dough in your palm and gently push down onto your baking sheet, molding edges to make your preferred cookie shape.

Bake at 350 degrees for 17 minutes.
Remove from oven and cool.

This yielded about 32 cookies.  
Each cookie is under 80 calories, with only 3 grams of fat and 1.5 grams of fiber.


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