Monday, August 15, 2011

Meredith's Monster Cookies

Last Friday night brought a dinner party with close friends, pleasant patio weather, and delectable dishes. We enjoyed an easy menu of Greek salad, pizza, wine, and my contribution, dessert! I have been dying to try a cookie recipe that my cousin Meredith sent to me last week, and this was the perfect chance to whip up a batch. They sounded so naturally scrumptious, and I wouldn’t have to tweak the recipe to make it gluten free. Less work, more flavor? I am there!

The only thing I needed to change was the enormity of a recipe name: Sugar-Free, Egg-Free Peanut Butter & Banana Chocolate Chunk Cookies. That simply wouldn’t do. I think this dessert deserves a decent name, one that gives credit where credit is due too. Meredith’s Monster Cookies is a bit sweeter, and you won’t go blue in the face trying to say it with one breath!

I made mine with vegan semi-sweet chocolate that I had on hand but you can use whatever your little chocoholic heart desires. The result? They turned out to have the perfect cookie texture, a crunchy outer shell and a burst of gooey smoothness in the center. I attribute it to the banana that I pureed instead of mashing. I didn’t want chunks of banana, but rather a banana flavor. I was tempted to throw a flax egg in the mix because the dough was pretty soft but they held together nicely. Loads of lip smacking goodness is packed into tasty treats!

Thanks Meredith for sharing this recipe with me. It will definitely be on my cookie recipe hotlist!

Meredith’s MONSTER Cookies

· 3 large, ripe bananas
· 1/2 cup peanut butter, preferably all-natural
· 1/3 cup canola oil
· 1 tsp vanilla extract
· 2 cups old-fashioned oats
· 1 tsp baking powder
· 1/4 tsp cinnamon
· 1/4 tsp salt
· 1/2 – 1 cup semi-sweet vegan chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350˚F.

Puree the bananas and put into a large bowl. Add your peanut butter, oil and vanilla. In another bowl stir together the oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients along with the chocolate and stir until combined.

Drop spoonfuls of dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment or coated with nonstick spray. I made the first batch a little bigger so I baked for almost 20 minutes. The second batch baked for about 16 minutes.You are looking for a rich golden brown color on the outside.

Remove and let cool. Sneak one or two to taste test…then serve!

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