Cacao-Chocolate Chip Cookies + Recipes for the Week of March 26, 2012

by Julie

Sometimes you just need to go back to the basics. Sometimes  you feel the urge for simple and sweet, for childhood complete with messy face, gooey fingers, and a tall glass of cold (almond) milk.

Enter chocolate chip cookies. My inspiration came from this recent post (I was delighted to find the original recipe was sensitive to gluten allergies!) and a small jar of cacao beans I’d put off using for who knows how long. I love the earthy, nutty taste of cacao, the way it melts in my mouth lends a grown-up twist to the chocolate chips of childhood.

(cacao nibs, cacao beans)

Perhaps this recipe is a reflection of my thoughts of late, the juxtaposition of childhood and adulthood, the boundary where one ends (do it have to?) and the other begins (must one falter for the other to take over?). I’ve been reading Fanny Howe’s Winter Sun: Notes on a Vocation, and in it Howe wrestles with a similar concept, trying to make sense of growing up in a world which, to her, even as a young child, she recognized as a place of injustice and grief. She writes: “Childhood is the stage where a person either submits to or resists life as another adult…The child poised on the threshold of a door is also the ghost going the other way; they are one action immortalized by a single position toward the world: not there.

Cacao-Chocolate Chip Cookies


1/2 cup Earth Balance coconut spread, at room temperature
1/4 cup packed coconut palm sugar
1/2 cup natural cane sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
egg replacer, equivalent to 1 egg
1 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/4 cup tapioca starch
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup cacao nibs

To make:

Preheat oven to 350. Combine coconut spread, sugars, vanilla extract and egg replacer in large mixing bowl and whisk until combined. Set aside and in a small mixing bowl, combine flours, starch, salt and baking soda. Sift well before slowly adding flour mixture to coconut spread mixture. Stir to combine (you may want to use your hands!) and then gently fold in chocolate chips and cocoa nibs.

Prepare a large baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper. Roll small amounts of dough in hands, and gently press to flatten before placing dough on baking sheet. Give yourself about 2 inches between each cookie, then place on the middle oven rack and bake 11-13 minutes. Let cool and serve with almond milk.

Recipes for the Week

Monday, March 26: Curried Tomato Soup w/ Toasted Coconut (from Adrienneats)


I’ll look forward to eating this with some toasted gluten-free bread.

1/4 cup coconut flakes (or shredded unsweetened coconut)
4 tablespoon coconut oil 
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon ginger, minced
1 tablespoon jalapeño, minced
2 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon garam masala
1 carrot, chopped
2 small turnips, chopped
1-28 oz. can of whole peeled tomatoes (chopped), and the juice
1 medium tomato, chopped
1-13.5 oz can of full fat coconut milk
2.5-3 cups of water or vegetable broth
half a head of cauliflower, chopped
1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
garnish with cracked pepper, cilantro, & toasted coconut

Tuesday, March 27: Quinoa with Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Quinoa ingredients

1 cup quinoa
2 cups water 
Sea salt, to taste

In a roasting pan, combine:

1 leek, washed, trimmed, sliced
1 pound Brussels sprouts, washed, trimmed, halved (or quartered, if large)
1/4 cup slivered blanched almonds
1/4 cup plump golden raisins, packed
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons golden balsamic vinegar 
sea salt, to taste
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons dried dill

To serve:

2 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley, chopped
sea salt and ground pepper, to taste

Wednesday, March 28: Quinoa Black Bean Burgers (from Two Blue Lemons)

If you made extra quinoa on Tuesday, use it here for this recipe!


2 cups or 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup dry quinoa
1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs (sub corn meal for gluten-free)
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 small onion, finely chopped

2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
pinch salt 

Thursday, March 29: Beet Greens Salad (from Sprouted Kitchen)

This looks like a lovely complimentary salad to the raw kale salad my husband and I have been eating at least once a week. It’ll be nice to have another go-to green salad for the approaching long, warm nights.


1 bunch of beets, including fresh looking greens1 tablespoon ginger, minced
olive oil for cooking
4 scallions, white and light green parts
1 cup cooked and cooled quinoa
1 small avocado, diced
1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds

//for tahini dressing//
2 tablespoons tahini
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1-2 teaspoons agave nectar, depending on desired sweetness
3 tablespoons water, or as needed
hefty pinch of salt and pepper
1 clove of garlic finely minced
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoons finely chopped chives