I’m a terrible Jew. It’s Yom Kippur and I’m not supposed to be doing anything but starving myself and atoning for my sins, since at the end of the day my fate for the next year is supposedly sealed. You can see why I’ve always found this “holiday” rather grim. My mom never liked Yom Kippur either, but she still made us go to temple every year and tried to encourage us to fast, or at least not to gorge ourselves on food. It was always a strange sort of day because even though we had off from school, I always felt like we weren’t supposed to have any fun.
Even now, a residual feeling of discomfort lingers… Maybe I’m a good Jew after all! I still have some Jewish guilt even if I’m basically non-practicing.
Bunky has off from school today so my time is minimal, if not non-existent, so this post will be brief. I thought I’d include links to some recipes I’ve tried and enjoyed this week. Desserts, of course. I am having some SERIOUS issues with what to make for dinner. The other night I tried out a new recipe and nearly poisoned my husband, who ran from the table clutching his stomach. I felt fine and so did Bunky, but that’s probably because I have a stomach of steel and Bunky refused to eat any, calling it awful. (Better than gross, right?) At the time my husband defended my cooking honor, but later I think he agreed.
Fortunately, he enjoyed both of these treats I whipped up, despite the fact that there is NO added sugar (at least not in the original recipes). Crazy, right? So if you want to bake something sweet, but not too sweet, try these. I tweaked both to fit my needs, but I have no doubt they’re great as is.
Sweet Potato Biscuits by Karina, the Gluten Free Goddess
Cinnamon Spiced Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies by Vegan Richa
For the biscuits, which for me came out more like soft fluffy cupcakes, I used a real egg instead of an egg replacer, and subbed my own AP flour mix for the 1 and ½ cup of mixed flours she suggested. Then, because I’m suspicious of any recipe that has no refined sugar, I sprinkled the tops generously with turbinado (a fancy way of saying raw) sugar. I figured it was okay since there is technically a vegetable inside. Sweet potatoes are super healthy, which makes it easy to eat a lot of these biscuits.
Karina’s photos are gorgeous, and mine looked like brown lumps, but I swear it tasted great, especially when dipped in maple butter (made easily by microwaving butter and maple syrup into a soft mush). I also really liked Karina’s instructions to eat right away because they don’t freeze well. Fine by me.
As I suspected, Bunky only ate the sugary tops, but my husband loved the whole thing, and Little Guy devoured warm fragrant pieces of the soft center. No added sugar (except my own addition of the topping), just a couple tablespoons of maple syrup. I’d definitely make them again.
Next up, the spiced banana chocolate chip cookies. I’ve had my eye on this recipe for a few weeks, partly because I love anything banana-chip, but also because I’m curious about treats that don’t have added sugar. It goes against my sugar junkie nature to think of dessert without the white stuff. Can just ripe bananas and dates actually be sweet enough?
I tweaked the recipe by subbing cinnamon for ginger and cloves because I thought those spices might be too spicy for my picky girl, but next time I may use them since she has eaten 0 and I’ve had 7 (so far). Also, I used Baker’s brand chocolate chunks, a new fave, instead of chips.
The result – Deliciousness! And no guilt.
And, I’m no longer afraid to use dates! Dates, which to me look a bit too much like those hideous brown bugs that reside in city apartments (SO sorry for the mental image) have intimidated me for a long time. But I’ve seen them pop up so often in recipes lately, dates not the bugs, especially those healthy ones without sugar. I just bought a handful at Delicious Orchards this past weekend, a sprawling and lovely farm market near where I grew up. They make everything, including dates, look gorgeous.
One thing Richa doesn’t mention in her recipe, maybe because all you healthy bakers already know this, is that you should soak the dates in water first to soften them. And, then take the pits out. I knew the first fact from my late night food blogging addiction, but not the second. Glad I squished one first BEFORE tossing it into my food processor.
Let me know if you have other recipes that call for natural sweeteners that are actually sweet and not just health food masquerading as treats. I’d even be willing to buy more dates!
Now, one last thing that has nothing to do with healthy baking or Yom Kippur: a photo of my naturally sweet kiddos. I love that Little Guy insists on using a straw like Bunky. They love each other so much I can’t stand it.