Tag Archives: cookies

Vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

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A great teatime treat, these vegan cookies will have even the most ardent peanut butter hater craving more! For non vegans and vegans alike, these cookies are sure to be loved by everyone. Make a double batch and watch them disappear!

These cookies are the perfect combination of caramel, peanuts and chocolate. I’m told it’s ‘just like a Snickers bar’ – but I honestly wouldn’t remember, it’s been so long now! Either way, these cookies are a really delicious, easy, one-bowl-mix-it-all-together recipe. They’re so good I may have eaten 3 in-between them coming out of the oven and being photographed… whoops!

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Continuing my vegan baking streak, these cookies contain no dairy and no eggs, and you honestly wouldn’t know. With all the flavour and fat from the peanut butter, it’s one of those rare times you don’t miss the richness that dairy usually brings to a recipe.

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You can use whatever type of peanut butter you have in these, and the end result will vary accordingly. I use an all natural, no added sugar, crunchy variety; I love the little pieces of peanut in the cookies and personally think the recipe is sweet enough. However, I’m really keen to try it with smooth peanut butter, and if you use a variety with sugar in it, consider reducing the sugar in the recipe a little.

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This recipe is based on a recipe from a vegan baking book that I absolute love and would highly recommend – Ms Cupcake: The Naughtiest Vegan Cakes In Town. Full of all sorts of vegan sweet treats, I’m yet to come across a recipe that hasn’t been a roaring success.

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Double Chocolate Cookies

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Chewy, all-American double chocolate cookies. The perfect texture with a very chocolatey flavour, these are my new go-to cookies when I fancy a quick treat. The perfect accompaniment for lazy afternoons pouring over recipes and cookery books!

So these cookies came about in a bit of a funny way. I really wasn’t looking for a blogging recipe at all – but turns out these were just too good not to post! After a baking fail (yes, they do happen!) I just really fancied a cookie, and as I stumbled across this recipe and had all the ingredients in the cupboard, it was a bit of an ‘oh why not’ situation. And they were perfect. And dangerously quick to make…

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These are very chocolatey. And even though they are a chocolate biscuit, with lots of chocolate in, they are the perfect balance of sweet and bitter, which makes them dangerously moreish. They also have just the right texture; you know how some cookies can be a tad cake-y, and others can be too hard and crunchy? Well these are neither; they are the classic American cookie texture – slightly soft in the middle, crisp and sweet at the edges and chewy all over.

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This recipe didn’t need to be changed at all; only tweaked to use a dairy free butter and dark chocolate. Although the original recipe used a mixture of milk and dark chocolate, I think these worked brilliantly with just dark – it stops them getting too sweet, and it made it a more grown-up flavour, making it feel like a decadent treat. You could of course still use half and half if preferred, using a dairy free ‘milk’ chocolate. Whichever you choose, just try to resist eating them all at once!

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Chocolate, Almond and Orange Biscotti

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Classic Italian Biscotti recipe flavoured with chocolate, almonds and orange, perfect for a treat anytime of the day. Ideal for dipping in a hot drink or a cold, sweet glass of wine if you prefer! 

Biscotti are something I’ve always been curious about making- and not something I’ve eaten very often. I tend to think of them as something reserved for Christmas, or posh restaurants where they are served alongside your after-dinner coffee. However, I stumbled across a recipe from Paul Hollywood’s ‘Bread’ on the internet and thought they just sounded too tasty not to give them a try. Paul makes a trio of biscotti, and I just couldn’t resist the sound of chocolate, almond and orange.

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Biscotti come in lots of different flavours, but are very recognisable from their traditional shape and texture – always an elongated half moon shape with a very dry and crunchy texture. They are also surprisingly sweet, and so my favourite way to eat them is dipped in steaming black coffee. The bitter coffee and sweet biscuit compliment each other perfectly, whilst the almond provides more crunch and the orange zest really brings out the flavour of the coffee, chocolate and almond.

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The name ‘biscotti’ originates from Latin and means twice baked. Confusingly, biscotti in Italian simply means biscuit; this could lead to a great disappointment if you were hoping for the twice baked variety (in Italy twice baked biscuits are called ‘cantuccini’)! However, despite their fancy name, they’re very simple to make. By shaping the dough into logs for the first bake, and then cutting them into fingers for the second bake there is no need to be precise or pretty about it – which makes a nice change from the things I usually bake!

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Chocolate Viennese Whirls

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Sweet, buttery, melt in the mouth Viennese Whirl biscuits sandwiched together with a chocolate truffle filling; these are perfect for a special occasion and would be a great alternative to cake. You’d never guess how simple these are to bake just by looking at them! 

Sometimes, I just don’t fancy cake. There, I said it! Sometimes something a little more sophisticated, a little less sweet does the trick. And just like there is a cake for every occasion, the same can be said for the humble biscuit… right the way from a rough and ready chocolate chip cookie to these splendid Viennese Whirls. They look so impressive, so time consuming, so “did you really make these at home?!“, but they are so so simple! IMG_1359 In texture, these biscuits are like an extremely short shortbread. A very buttery texture, they drift away in the mouth (because to even suggest melt would make them sound too heavy!) leaving behind a sweet buttery taste – yes, even without real butter!

These are Chocolate Viennese Whirls; unlike their familiar counterparts which are usually filled with jam and buttercream, they are less sweet, slightly more rich, and far more decadent. The chocolate filling is simply melted chocolate, then mixed with butter and caster sugar. I was surprised at the addition of caster sugar, but the texture of it really works and compliments the smooth biscuits with the smallest amount of pleasant crunch. And if you have some filling left over, you can roll it into balls and coat in cocoa powder for a quick and easy chocolate truffle! IMG_1370 I found this recipe a long long time ago in You magazine, and had it hoarded away in a pile marked ‘to try’. I’m so glad I did. The recipe was perfect and the only tweak I made was to the cooking time – I found mine needed a little longer in the oven to completely dry out, which is important as this is what gives them their lighter than light texture. IMG_1381 The trick to the shape of these fancy biscuits is a piping bag and nozzle. This might make you shy away in horror – but trust me, this is not a recipe where you need to have piping skills! The nozzle does all the work for you; pipe any shape you want and with a slightly damp finger, smooth over any edges you want to hide. If this really does fill you with fear, pipe some practice shapes onto a plate until you’re happy, then scoop the dough back into the piping bag to make your final biscuits.

If you don’t want to go as far as making the filling you can simply melt the chocolate and dip the biscuits in, as I did with some of mine – or, even easier, use a dairy free chocolate spread thickened with a little cocoa powder or icing sugar to sandwich them together! IMG_1393 Continue reading

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Chocolate Chip & Hazelnut Cookies

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Soft, chewy chocolate chip cookies with crunch hazelnut pieces throughout. You’ll never go for a shop bought cookie again!

Oh cookies… Even just the word makes my mouth water, my attention drift towards thoughts of warm, chewy, soft, chocolatey bites of goodness. At least that’s certainly how I felt about cookies before giving up dairy! Now, the best I’ve managed to find are Sainsburys’ Free From Chocolate Chip Cookies; However, also being free from gluten and wheat, they’re missing some of the best characteristics of a good cookie in my opinion.

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And so the long quest started to find the recipe for the perfect dairy free cookie. I’m still not sure I’m there, but these are pretty darn close – and a considerable improvement to any ‘free from’ cookies I’ve eaten. These are best eaten warm from the oven, and the best way to do this is wrap any chilled cookie dough you won’t eat immediately in clingfilm, roll into a sausage shape, freeze, then when you want cookies simply slice off into rounds and bake. And voilà!

These cookies are the perfect mix of crisp, crunchy outside with a soft chewy centre. I’ve added hazelnut pieces and syrup into the dough to give some extra flavour to compliment the chocolate, but you could leave this out if you wish.

What could be better than a freshly baked cookie… go on, give it a try and treat yourself!

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Hazelnut Shortbread

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As I mentioned in my Christmas Fruit Loaf post, I spent this Christmas with my boyfriend’s family and it was wonderful. One of the best things was the sheer amount of thought and effort my boyfriend’s mum had gone to to ensure that there was always a dairy free sweet treat for me around the house.

One of the many bakes she made were these delicious Hazelnut Shortbreads. Light and melt in the mouth (like all shortbreads should be) with small pieces of chopped roasted hazelnuts throughout, they were just perfection. These are required to be eaten sitting down, with your full attention, with a cup of tea or coffee on the side. No cheating allowed – these are not your average biscuits!

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As well as chopped roasted hazelnuts there is also a small amount of hazelnut syrup. I have used Monin Hazelnut coffee syrup which works perfectly and ensures an extra hit of hazelnut flavour – you can find these types of coffee syrups in the coffee aisle (who would have thought such a logical place!) in most big supermarkets.

The only tiny addition I have made to the recipe from my boyfriend’s mum is to introduce a small amount of cornflour, which according to the Scottish inventors of shortbreads is used to ensure melt in the mouth perfection. Although, as my boyfriend’s mum proved, it is possible to get this effect without using it, if your touch is not super light it helps the biscuit be a little more forgiving and still give you the most melt in the mouth shortbread as possible.

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