Remember last week when I told you to freeze that almond milk pulp from your wonderful, dreamy homemade almond milk? Well here’s a real treat for you, just in time for the holiday baking season, which starts tomorrow, FYI. Growing up, my mother wouldn’t let a Christmas decoration or song be placed or played before December 1st. Seeing as we’re almost there, I figured I’d share this recipe. If you get all the ingredients today, you could be baking tomorrow. Easy baking (no wet to dry). And it’s healthy but delicious baking. With Christmas music. Just saying.
Anyhoo, as I said last week, almond pulp is a difficult thing. I don’t like to waste food, especially the fibre from nourishing almonds, but almond pulp used to basically beg me to waste it. I remember baking nearly inedible breakfast bars with it, trying to incorporate it into baked recipes, and even trying to use it as a body scrub. It lacks texture and is just kind of… pulpy. Not great. I was always envious of the clever people who seemed to be able to do wonderful things with the pulp – like delicious dips, or dehydrating the pulp to be used in place of bread crumbs. Genius!
Last Christmas I made chocolate cookies from almond pulp. They were quite good. This year, however, I couldn’t help but think of one of the most delicious holiday desserts, Nigella Lawson’s chocolate gingerbread cake. The key is the chocolate chips, which provide just the right amount of sweetness in the midst of the gingery chocolatey cake. And the chocolate chips really add to the texture of the almond pulp cookies.
Here’s some info on the ingredients, which pull together to create a pretty guiltless cookie:
- The warming spices in gingerbread have many benefits, especially during the holiday season. Ground ginger helps to promote circulation and stimulate digestion. Cloves help to stimulate the digestive system, and cinnamon is excellent at balancing blood sugar, which is especially important in a cookie.
- There’s no sugar added to these cookies – medjool dates and molasses provide the sweetness. Molasses is high in minerals such as iron and calcium, as well as copper, potassium and magnesium. Try to find unsulfured molasses, as it contains fewer preservatives and has a cleaner taste. Medjool dates are high in vitamin B6 and potassium. But although they’re really sweet, dates won’t raise blood sugar as much as a sweetener will. This is because their fibre slows the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream.
So thaw out your almond milk pulp (or use it fresh, once you’ve made your almond milk), get a big silver bowl, cookie sheet and a few measuring devices. Preheat your oven to 350, put on this song (which is the best Christmas song ever, a seven minute live version of Bruce Springsteen’s Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town), and let’s get going.
Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies
(Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Vegan)
1 cup almond milk pulp (leftover from making almond milk)
¼ cup cocoa powder
1 tbsp + 1 tsp coconut oil
2 medjool dates, mashed
2 tbsp unsulfured molasses
1 tbsp ground flax
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ground clove
½ cup chocolate chips (I like Camino’s organic semi-sweet chocolate chips, or use vegan chocolate chips)
¼ cup almond milk (less may be needed if your batter can be molded into small cookies)
Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Add almond milk, if needed, if the dough is crumbly.
Spoon out tablespoon sized cookies onto a cookie sheet oiled with the teaspoon of coconut oil.
Bake in an oven preheated to 350 for 30-35 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Pour a little glass of fresh almond milk, put this song back on, and eat that cookie!