Tahini Chocolate Chip Cookie Sticks

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This gluten-free snack from kitchen-tested.com has a short list of ingredients and comes together nicely despite the absence of flour.

Ingredients:

1 cup raw tahini
6 tbsp. pure maple syrup
2 large eggs
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
½ tsp. baking soda
1 ½ cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
Sea salt flakes for sprinkling

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the “s” blade, combine the tahini, maple syrup, eggs, vanilla, and baking soda until smooth.

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Fold in 1 cup of the chocolate chips.

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Form one log on each of the 2 baking sheets. The dough will be very sticky so use a spatula to form the logs.

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Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle each loaf with ¼ cup chocolate chips, gently pressing them into the dough. Sprinkle each loaf with ¼ tsp. sea salt flakes. Allow to cool for 15-20 minutes before slicing into cookie sticks.

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Tahini and Olive Oil Granola

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Adapted from the cookbook “Sababa” by Adeena Sussman, I make this in large batches so that it can be snacked on directly from the container, or added to yogurt.

Ingredients:

5 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup raw almonds
1 cup raw cashews
1 cup unsweetened flaked coconut
½ cup shelled pumpkin seeds
4 tbsp. sunflower seeds
4 tbsp. sesame seeds
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 1/3 cups pure tahini paste
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2/3 cup coconut sugar
½ cup pure maple syrup
½ cup silan (date syrup)
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Optional-add in ½ cup dried cherries, cranberries, currants, chopped dates or blueberries once baking is complete

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F and line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine the oats, almonds, cashews, coconut, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, and salt.

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In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the tahini, oil, sugar, maple syrup, silan, and vanilla until sugar is dissolved.

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Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and stir together until combined.

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Divide the mixture between the two rimmed baking sheets and bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 5-10 minutes to prevent burning.

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Remove from the oven and let cool completely, break any clumps into smaller pieces, then stir in the dried fruit if using.

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EVOO Brownies

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Adapted from Weeknight Baking by Michelle Lopez, this two bowl brownie recipe was the first time I used extra-virgin olive oil instead of butter or margarine. This fudgy brownie takes just minutes to prep and can be made without electric equipment or cooktop.

Ingredients:

1 1/3 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup icing sugar
3 cups granulated sugar
1 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
½ tsp. kosher salt
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 tbsp. water
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 325F and line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper sprayed with nonstick spray.

Sift the cocoa and icing sugar over a bowl to remove any lumps. Add the sugar, flour, salt, and chocolate chips. Mix until combined.

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In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, oil, water, and vanilla.

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Pour the dry ingredients over the wet ingredients and fold until just combined.

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Transfer the batter to the baking pan and bake for 40 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature before slicing.

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Cranberry Tahini Brownies

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Adapted from Kitchen Tested, this gluten-free recipe uses fresh/frozen cranberries which I much prefer to dried cranberries.

Ingredients:

1 cups raw tahini paste
1 cup coconut or brown sugar
½ cup pure maple syrup
1 ½ tsp. pure vanilla extract
4 large eggs
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. kosher salt
1 ½ cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
1 ½ cups fresh/frozen cranberries, divided
Sea salt flakes to decorate

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350F and line a 9-x13-inch baking pan with parchment paper and spray with nonstick spray.

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the “s” blade, combine the tahini, sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, eggs, cocoa, baking soda, and salt until smooth.

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Add 1 cup chocolate chips and 1 cup cranberries and fold into batter with a spatula. The batter will be thick.

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Transfer the batter to the baking pan and scatter the remaining ½ cup chocolate chips and ½ cup cranberries over the top of the batter.

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Bake for 33 minutes. Sprinkle sea salt flakes over the baked brownies. Allow to cool before slicing.

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Brookie Squares

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Brownie on the bottom, chocolate chip cookie dough on top. Say no more.

Ingredients:

For the cookie dough:

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted pareve margarine
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 ½ tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. kosher salt
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided

For the brownie batter:

12 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted pareve margarine
1 cup granulated sugar
6 large eggs, room temperature
1 ½ tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
¼ tsp. kosher salt

Directions:

To make the cookie dough, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the margarine and sugars until light and fluffy.

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Add the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla. Scrape down the bowl as necessary.

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Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix until just combined.

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Add 2 cups of the chocolate chips and fold in. Set aside.

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Preheat the oven to 350F and line a 9-x13-inch baking pan with parchment paper lined with parchment paper sprayed with nonstick spray.

In a double boiler, combine the chocolate and margarine and stir until completely smooth and melted.

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Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Add the sugar followed by the eggs, and vanilla. Stir until smooth.

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Add the flour and salt and mix until just combined.

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Transfer the batter to the baking pan.

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Dollop the cookie dough over the brownie batter and cover the brownie batter using an offset spatula.

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Bake for 45-50 minutes.

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Remove from the oven and sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of chocolate chips over the top, gently pressing into batter, and return the pan to the oven for 5 more minutes. Remove and allow to cool before slicing.

Extreme Lemon Cake

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This nondairy version of a classic Maida Heatter cake has the perfect pairing of lemons and sugar.

Ingredients:

For the cake:

Zest of 3 lemons
3 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 2/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. kosher salt
2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted pareve margarine, room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup almond milk

For the glaze:

½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/3 cup granulated sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F and spray a Bundt pan with cooking spray.

Combine the zest of 3 lemons and 3 tbsp. lemon juice in a small bowl and set aside.

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Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.

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In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the margarine and sugar and beat until fluffy.

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Add the eggs, one at a time.

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Alternately, add the flour mixture and almond milk, beginning and ending with the flour. Fold in the zest/lemon juice mixture.

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Transfer the batter to the baking pan and bake for 55 minutes.

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While the cake is baking, combine the ½ cup lemon juice and 1/3 cup sugar in a small bowl.

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Once the cake comes out of the oven, allow to cool for 20-30 minutes and then remove from pan, turning it over.

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Brush the cake liberally with the glaze.

Lemon Blueberry Cake

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This fragrant cake is perfect for spring and summer when fresh blueberries are in season.

Ingredients:

For the cake:

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
4 ½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. kosher salt
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
Zest of 2 lemons
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup grapeseed/coconut/olive oil
1 ½ cups nondairy sour cream (Tofutti)
½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
3 cups fresh blueberries, tossed in 1 tbsp. unbleached all-purpose flour

For the lemon frosting:

2 ¼ cups confectioners’ sugar
1 tbsp. grapeseed oil
4 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F and line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper sprayed with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.

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In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade, pulse the sugar and lemon zest together.

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Add the eggs, oil, sour cream, lemon juice and vanilla.  Process until well combined.

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Add the flour mixture and pulse until just combined.  Gently fold in the blueberries.

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Transfer the batter to the baking pan and bake for 45 minutes.  Allow to cool for 30 minutes while making the frosting.

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Combine the confectioners’ sugar, oil and lemon juice in a bowl.  Stir until desired consistency is reached.

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Spread the frosting as a thin layer over the entire cake and refrigerate until ready to serve.

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Bakery Style Blueberry Muffins

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Because I believe that you can’t have too many blueberry muffin recipes…this one shines because of the high volume of blueberries. This batter makes the perfect dome because of the high heat at the start of the baking process. Light and fluffy and they freeze well.

Ingredients:

For the muffins:
1 cup grapeseed oil
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup almond/soy/coconut milk
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
3 1/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, divided
1 cup whole wheat flour
4 tsp. baking powder
¾ tsp. kosher salt
5 cups blueberries, divided
For the streusel:
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 stick (8 tbsp.) unsalted pareve margarine, cold

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425F and line 18 muffin cups with liners.

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade, process the oil, eggs, milk, sugar, and vanilla until well combined.

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In a separate bowl, combine 3 cups all-purpose and the whole wheat flour, baking powder and salt. Add the flour mixture to the food processor and pulse until just combined.

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Toss 4 cups of blueberries with remaining 1/3 cup all-purpose flour. Reserve 1 cup of blueberries. Fold in the blueberries that have been tossed in flour.

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Using a large ice cream scoop, transfer the batter to the muffin tins. Top each of the muffins with the remaining 1 cup of blueberries, gently pressing them into the batter.

In a cleaned food processor bowl fitted with the steel blade, pulse together the streusel ingredients until small pieces of margarine remain.

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Sprinkle the streusel topping over each of the muffins.

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Bake for 8 minutes, then reduce temperature to 375F and bake for 25 minutes more, rotating the pans halfway through.

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Krispie Peanut Butter Brownies

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This recipe from Diane Morrisey uses a cake mix “hack.” I almost never use cake mixes but here is a great reason to make an exception…

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Ingredients:

2 packages of Duncan Hines Chewy Fudge premium brownie mix
1 ½ cups chunky peanut butter
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup creamy peanut butter
3 cups Rice Krispies

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F and line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper sprayed with cooking spray. Prepare the brownie mix according to directions on the box (add ½ cup water, ½ cup grapeseed oil and 2 eggs) and bake for 32 minutes.

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Remove from oven and immediately spread 1 ½ cups chunky peanut butter over the warm brownie.

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In a double boiler, melt together the chocolate chips and creamy peanut butter until smooth. Remove from the heat and stir in the Rice Krispies.

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Spread over the chunky peanut butter layer and refrigerate until ready to serve.

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Best Raisin Bran Muffins

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This raisin bran muffin gets its intense flavour from “cooked raisins.” This recipe makes approximately 18 muffins.

Ingredients:

4 cups wheat bran
3 cups raisins, divided
3 cups water divided
1 cup almond/coconut milk
Zest of one orange
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup grapeseed oil
2 large eggs and 2 large egg whites
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
½ cup whole wheat flour
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. kosher salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375F and line muffin pan with paper liners.

In a medium sized saucepan, combine 2 cups of the raisins and 2 cups of water.

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Cook over medium heat for about 15 minutes until most of the liquid has been absorbed.

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Transfer the plumped raisins to the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade and process until smooth.

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Add the wheat bran, milk, the remaining 1 cup water, zest, sugar, oil, eggs, and egg whites. Process until well combined.

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Combine the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl, and transfer the mixture to the food processor. Pulse until just combined.

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Fold in remaining 1 cup of raisins.

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Scoop batter into the muffin tin and bake for 20 minutes.

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