By SHELLEY CHAPMAN
It's holiday time, and everywhere you turn, sweet temptations are lurking—on kitchen countertops, in office break rooms, on coffee tables by the fireplace, where anxious little kids looking to curry last-minute favor with Santa pile cookies high. As much as your favorite pair of jeans may hate them or your aerobics instructor makes you regret them, the truth is, baked holiday goodies are simply irresistible. And these treats? They're downright addictive. Make these with no regrets: It's okay to indulge every once in a while, and certainly when the treats you're making are made from scratch, with love and lots of Vegan goodness.
Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie Cremes with Chocolate Ganache
What you'll need:
* 3/4 cup brown sugar
* 10 TB vegan margarine
* 1/4 cup almond milk (note: you can substitute with soy or rice milk)
* 3.39 oz vegan vanilla pudding mix
* 2 tsp vanilla extract
* 1.5 cup flour
* 1/2 tsp baking soda
* 3/4 cup chocolate chips ( though I just pour until my heart is content!)
1. Preheat oven to 350 F; lightly grease two large light metal baking sheets.
2. Cream vegan margarine, pudding mix and sugar.
3. Mix in milk and vanilla.
4. Add 1 cup of the flour, plus the baking soda and salt. Mix until well incorporated.
5. Mix in the remainder of the flour.
6. Fold in the chocolate chips; the dough should be formed.
7. For best results, spoon the dough onto plastic wrap or wax paper and shape and roll into a log, then refrigerate for a minimum of 10 minutes so that you can cut it rather than spooning it; it's a much easier way to handle sticky cookie dough. (Note: The other great part about rolling is that you can cut off what you need and bake it and store the rest in the fridge. Not interested in rollin' and plastickin' and paper waxin' and refrigeratin'? No worries: You also can pinch off pieces of dough, roll them into balls and flatten them with your hands to shape your cookies.
8. Place on an ungreased baking sheet and bake for about 8 minutes - no more than 9 - until they are just a little browned around the edges.
9. Let cool completely before preparing the cookie sandwich with the Chocolate Ganache.
What you'll need:
* 3/4 cup soy, rice or almond milk (I use vanilla flavored almond milk)
* 1/4 cup vegan butter
* 12 oz. chocolate chips
1. Put milk and butter in a double boiler.
2. When the butter melts, add chocolate chips, and stir until chocolate melts and mix is creamy and smooth
3. Once creamy, remove from heat and allow to cool. Ganache will become slightly hardened. Spread over one cookie, then top the Chocolate Ganache with a second cookie.
About our MyBrownBaby contributor:
Shelley Chapman is a culinary artisan whose passion for "natural, from scratch, quality ingredient meals" led her to consult on meal preparation, planning and holistic consumption as a personal chef for her company, Naturi Beauty Concepts. She offers private culinary services in the Atlanta area, specializing in Vegan and Vegetarian cuisine with a global influence. For more tasty vegetarian/vegan recipes, please visit Shelley at Naturi Beauty.