The Substitute Cookies | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

The Substitute Cookies

The idea to bake strange cookies came to me when I was in a bind.

As an editorial assistant, it's part of my job to help ensure that all the holes in the newspaper are filled. Some weeks it's easy, and some weeks it's not. This week, we were missing a food story.

I thought of everything, from my weird smoothie recipes to my experiments with low-fat, low-calorie, but tasty dishes. I thought of cookies, of course, because they're easy to make, and everyone loves them. And then I thought of all those times I was tempted to try substitutes in a recipe. I'm on Pinterest a lot, and I saw a lot of people posting lists of baking substitutes, and I thought, why not? Who says I have to use flour, sugar and butter for every dish I bake? They help with some of the processes involved in cooking, but sometimes those ingredients are superfluous and unnecessary for someone who doesn't want to feel guilty about eating a cookie.

And so came the idea to bake cookies that were made without flour, white sugar and egg yolks.

The batter alarmed me at first because it went from an ugly green to an almost a chocolate-like color as I added each ingredient. These were definitely not the cookies I normally made. I could even smell rankness of the bean puree.

What I was most worried about, though, was whether or not these would act like regular cookies. To my surprise, they did and actually rose a lot quicker than normal. The cookies came out moist and small, unlike a lot of my other normal batches, which normally turn out hard and stuck together.

But it was the taste that surprised me the most. The cookies had a bit of a bitter taste, but it wasn't the beans or the avocado, though I could taste a hint of something different. It was the cocoa and the dark chocolate that gave the cookies that bitter bite. Though I'm disgusted by bitterness in food, I thought they were, all together, pretty tasty. Even my mother, who thinks anything I cook is weird, really liked them. And, of course, all the lovely people at JFP loved them, though they didn't know what was in them.

Not Really Chocolate Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Ingredients:

1/2 cup mashed avocado

A little less than 1/4 cup baking Stevia

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 egg whites

1 1/4 cup black bean puree

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder (optional)

1 cup dark chocolate chunks

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Farenheit and lined a baking sheet with parchment paper.

photo

Cookies made with avocado and black beans are tastier than you might think.

Grab a sharp knife and cut around the avocado, careful not to stab the pit just yet. After the fruit separates, hit the pit a few times with the knife until the knife blade digs into its hard shell. Twist and remove. Mash the green flesh with a fork and spoon 1/2 cup into a bowl

With your blender, puree 15 ounces of black beans. This should be about 1 1/4 cup. It's okay if it's a tiny bit less.

Cream the Stevia and brown sugar with the avocado. Stir in the vanilla and then the egg whites, one at a time. Add the black bean puree, baking soda, salt, and the cocoa powder, and mix well. Fold in the chocolate chunks.

Drop the batter evenly onto the baking sheet with a cookie scoop or a tablespoon and bake for 30 minutes.

At the end, stab the middle of one with a toothpick, and when the pick was clean or mostly clean, they are ready. Let the cookies sit on a cooling rack or on the sheet for 10 minutes.

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