Guilt-less Desserts & Treats for your Family
Last week 5yo H ran in his first Cross Country race at school. It was so cute! The little preppies were so excited about being in a race and seeing their parents at school that most of them clocked a few extra metres from running across the straight whilst waving furiously. They didn’t care where they came in the ‘race’, they were so excited to be there and so proud to finish (a lesson we can all take away I think!).
I did receive a wakeup call (or maybe I should say makeup call) at the big event. I went over to H and his class to let him know we were there and where we were sitting (I know this will be horribly embarrassing for him in years to come but he still loves it now!) and his teacher gave me a strange look. I thought this was strange, until she suddenly shook her head and laughed “I didn’t recognised you all dressed, with hair and makeup”. You see I have seen H’s teacher almost every day for 4 months and my attire (at the best of times!) is my trackies, ugg boots (the only shoes I can get on without too much assistance) and whatever top currently fits my growing baby bump. It is not glamorous; nor is my makeup free face or tangled hair. That particular race day I was heading off to work so not only was I wearing blush but I had even straightened my hair. Apparently I looked like a completely different person!
This case of mistaken identity did shame me into buying some new skin care products and I did try and wear jeans and shoes one day. I say try, as maternity jeans are not overly comfortable and as yet, no one has answered by Want Ad to put my shoes on every day. So whilst my intentions are good I often get changed as soon as I get home! It’s much easier to bake in comfortable clothes.
These cookies… these oh-so-simple cookies have become a staple in our house. The first time I made these Cranberry and Choc Chip Cookies 5yo H wasn’t home, which in hindsight was pretty mean of me as he is currently addicted to dried Cranberries. Dried Cranberries have been added to breakfast, hot chocolates, chocolate, caramel patties (this recipe to come soon!) and his lunch box. My husband came home from Costco recently with a giant bag of dried Cranberries and H’s eyes almost popped out of his head. He is (at times) a very simple child to please! 3yo S and I managed to polish quite a few off before H came home from school so I made another batch to prevent the enevitable drama.
These Cranberry and Choc Chip Cookies are an adaption of my favourite nut butter cookie (also seen here, here and loads of them in this). They are a 1 bowl marvel and ready in less than 20 minutes. I choose to make my own Almond Butter using this technique, but commercial nut butters can be substituted or even seed butters if you have an allergy (changing the nut/seed will alter the taste slightly; check if you need a dash of cinnamon or some extra vanilla extract). I also make my own Dairy Free Chocolate Chips (so easy) but if you prefer use 100 grams of pre made Chocolate, but of course then you wouldn’t get the satisfaction of violently banging on bag of chocolate chunks (it can be somewhat therapeutic).
These Cranberry and Choc Chip Cookies will take somewhere between 10-15 minutes to bake. Why such a dramatic time difference you ask? It will depend on the accuracy of your oven but more so on how much you flattened your cookies. I tend to squish mine down so they’re crunchy on the outside but a little cakey on the inside. If you squash them a lot then they’ll take less time than if you leave them in rounds.
- 1 Cup Almond Butter (see notes for link to make your own)- can be substituted for other nut/seed butters
- 1 Egg
- 2 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1 teaspoon Bicarb Soda
- 100 grams Chocolate Chips (see recipe below)
- 1/2-2/3 Cup dried Cranberries
- 1/4 Cup Coconut Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Maple Syrup/Honey
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1/4 Cup Cocoa
- Preheat the oven to 175C/350F.
- Line and grease 2 baking trays.
- Place all the ingredients (except the cranberries and choc chips) in a mixing bowl and stir until combined.
- Add the Cranberries (start with 1/2 Cup and add more if desired) and Choc Chips and lightly stir until just combined.
- Place spoonfuls of cookie dough on the baking trays and flatten slightly into circles using a spoon.
- Place 6 cookies on each tray (the recipe makes 12 cookies) as the cookies will spread slightly.
- Bake (1 tray at a time) for 10-14 minutes (the time will vary according to how your oven works. Judge the cookies readiness by the firmness of the bottom of the cookie).
- Allow the cookies to cool on the tray before serving.
- Melt the coconut oil in a saucepan over a very low heat.
- Stir in the maple syrup and vanilla.
- Add the cocoa and allow to thicken slightly.
- Pour the Chocolate into a small lined baking tray and freeze for 1 hour.
- Remove the Chocolate from the freezer and break into large pieces.Place the pieces in a zip lock freezer bag.
- Using a rolling pin, hammer, your feet etc bang the bag until the pieces are broken into smaller pieces.Use immediately or refreeze for later use.
- Alternatively, use a sharp knife and a cutting board to cut the chocolate into small pieces (this is the more grown up way to make Choc-chips).
- Use immediately or refreeze for later use.