Monday, April 28, 2014

{RECIPE} Mocha Chip Cookies


If there are two things you should absolutely know about me, they are that I love baking, and I love chocolate. Ok, there are more important things to know about me, but those are still pretty big ones.

I consider my kitchen my happy place. I love cooking, baking, and eating. Being in the kitchen relieves stress, and lets me release some creative energy.

However, I don't always have the ingredients a recipe calls for, and my penny-pinching ways don't always allow for a quick trip to the store for a dozen eggs and a bottle of honey. So, I search for alternatives. Sometimes they work, other times they don't. This recipe was one that did work...thank goodness.

The original recipe is from Against All Grain. I didn't have eggs or honey, and I had less than a cup's worth of ground coffee. Oh, and I only had one 72% dark chocolate bar from Trader Joe's. Thus, mocha chip cookies.

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup palm shortening, ghee, or grass-fed butter (I used butter)
  • ¼ cup coconut palm sugar
  • 2 tablespoons honey (I just used an additional 2 TBish of coconut sugar)
  • 1 large egg, room temperature (I made a flax gel... 1TB ground flax seed mixed with 3TB water. Let it sit for 10 minutes)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1½ cups blanched almond flour (I had almond meal)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt (I don't ever measure my salt...I just did a few twists on my grinder!)
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate pieces (I just chopped up my dark chocolate bar)
  • ¼ cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips (Didn't have this. Also didn't miss them!)
    I also added: a sprinkle of cinnamon, a tsp of coffee grounds

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a food processor, cream the butter, coconut sugar, flax gel, and vanilla for about 15 seconds until smooth and fluffy.
  3. Add the almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and coffee grounds and mix again until well-combined, stopping to scrap the sides of the bowl as needed.
  4. Stir in the chocolate chips/chunks by hand.
  5. Place dough on a cookie sheet lined with parchment, flatten them a bit-- they aren't going to rise or spread much.
  6. Bake for 9-12 minutes, until they don't look under-baked...duh.
  7. Transfer cookies (still on parchment!) to a wire cooling rack. 
  8. Enjoy! :)

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Little Things

There are so many words of wisdom regarding "the little things" in life. The little thing become the big things. The little things matter most. You know what? I agree. Let's take a look at my weekend, as an example. 


Ice cream, immediately after lunch, when we didn't necessarily need more food. But I wanted to share my love and excitement for this business with Brian. It's the little things. 


The views of the mountains on our way to Breckenridge were unbelievable. An iPhone won't ever capture the true beauty, but it gives us the memory. It's the little things. 


Hospital stays are crappy. Being sick without an answer is scary. But having your favorite person by your side, and a shared favorite game to enjoy...that helps. It's the little things. 


A post-hospital/pre-airport meal feels bittersweet. We ordered almost exactly what we had during our first visit at this favorite Denver establishment. But this time, we sat outside and enjoyed the 80* weather and talked about how grateful we were to be eating something other than hospital food. It's the little things. 

We said our goodbyes, and spent a few hours in silence as Brian flew back to Wisconsin. But then we had our goodnight call. We planned a dream date. We "kissed" goodnight. We sent post-call zany photos to say our final good night thought. Just like we do, every. single. night. It's the little things. 

This weekend had a few ups and downs, but at the end of the day, all the little things were just right.