Double Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookie for Two

Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie

One of my unofficial goals for January was to post recipes more regularly. I was going to blabber more frequently about being vegan and just stay on top of all things blog related. But then life happened, I tested out several cookie recipes and accidentally left some out on the counter, and my dog got a hold of them. A few sleepless nights, several trips to the vet, and a few gallons of carpet cleaner later, I’m happy to report that my dog is okay. Even though I’m failing on the posting regularly goal, at least I’m still vegan (which is the longest I’ve followed any diet ever!) and I came up with a pretty darn good cookie. Word of caution: keep far far away from dogs.

Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie
Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie

Since Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, I made you a skillet cookie just for two, because nothing says I love you like a gooey chocolate cookie. The texture is actually a cross between a brownie and a cookie that’s and filled with more melty chocolate chips. Essentially, it’s chocolate heaven. If you’re single, no worries. I could easily polish this off in one sitting by myself, and I won’t judge you if you do too.

This recipe is really simple to make – one bowl, dump and stir, and no mixer required! I tested the cookies with both tapioca flour and cornstarch, and liked the texture that the tapioca flour produced. However, I know it’s not as readily available, so you can sub cornstarch. Just know that it will have a slightly crispier exterior as it sets, but these are best served warm out of the oven anyway. Top with Triple Vanilla Ice Cream, grab two spoons, and dig in with your loved one.

Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie
Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie

Double Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookie for Two

Yield: One 5-inch skillet cookie

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, grape seed oil, or olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons tapioca flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 (85 grams) cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup (55 grams) bittersweet chocolate chips.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit and spray a 5-inch cast iron skillet with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, non-dairy milk, both sugars, tapioca flour, and vanilla extract with a fork.
  3. Continue beating the mixture with a for for 1-2 minutes until it thickens and resembles a smooth caramel.
  4. Add 1/3 cup of the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt and gently stir until combined.
  5. Add the remaining 1/3 cup of flour and cocoa powder and stir until just combined.
  6. Gently fold in the chocolate chips, being careful not to over mix.
  7. Spread the dough into the cast iron skillet and bake for 9-11 minutes.
  8. Serve warm and top with ice cream.
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Vegan Triple Vanilla Ice Cream

Triple Vanilla Ice Cream

I’m now 2 full weeks into being vegan, and the learning process continues. I suppose I already knew that you can be a really unhealthy vegan if you only eat carbs and processed foods, but I learned it the hard way when I did just that because I was too lazy to go to the grocery store. I really learned the hard way after eating frozen “mock” chicken sliders for 3 meals in a row and then trying to exercise. Let’s just say I was barely functional for the rest of the day.

So after my run I took a 3 hour nap and barely dragged myself out of bed for dinner only because Aaron had suggested we try a vegan restaurant in town called The Spiral Diner. I’d had a bad experience there a few years ago with a Philly cheesesteak so I was reluctant to go back, but I’m glad we gave it another shot. We had chips and queso, which has been the only acceptable cheese alternative I’ve had so far, followed by a decent vegan BLT with the best spicy ranch sauce I’ve had (vegan or otherwise), and the most amazing chocolate and peanut butter milkshake. After I got some much needed fat into my system, I went from on the verge of quitting this whole non-dairy lifestyle to feeling reenergized and ready for the next couple of weeks.

I’ve done a better job about being prepared and planning out my meals this week so I haven’t felt quite as fatigued, but nothing has been able to take my mind off of that chocolate peanut butter milkshaaaaake! Which is part of the reason why I’m posting an ice cream recipe in the middle of winter. The other reason is that I had originally intended on posting a vegan vanilla ice cream recipe last summer, but I failed so many times at it that I put it on the back burner.

Triple Vanilla Ice Cream
Triple Vanilla Ice Cream
Triple Vanilla Ice Cream

This is a take on recipe I found on Serious Eats, and by far has the best texture of any vegan ice cream I’ve tried. The triple vanilla part comes from using a vanilla bean, vanilla extract, and vanilla sugar (you can learn how to make vanilla sugar here). This recipe uses corn syrup, which I know many people prefer not to use, but Wholesome Sweeteners makes an organic non-GMO variety. If you have a corn allergy, you can proabably use tapioca syrup, brown rice syrup, or golden syrup since they have a similar texture, but I haven’t tested them.

If you have difficulty scooping the ice cream right out of the freezer, let it sit outside for 5-10 minutes before serving. Not only is it easier to scoop, but the flavors of rock solid ice cream right out of the freezer are less pronounced, so letting it rest will actually help it taste better.

I was planning on posting a recipe for a chocolate peanut butter milkshake after this one, but I felt a little bit silly telling you to dump things in a blender and calling it a recipe, so here it is: 1 cup of ice cream + 1/2 cup non-dairy milk + 3 tablespoons Dutch process cocoa powder (or natural or raw cacao if you prefer) + 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter = Chocolate Peanut Butter Milkshaaaaaake!

Vegan Triple Vanilla Ice Cream

Yield: one pint plus a little extra

Ingredients

  • 1 can full fat coconut milk, chilled in the refrigerator for 24 hours
  • 1 can full fat coconut milk, at room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/3 cup vanilla sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Open the can of chilled coconut milk and scoop off the hardened coconut cream (you won't need the remaining coconut water).
  2. Combine the coconut cream, coconut milk, corn syrup, vanilla sugar in a saucepan over medium heat.
  3. Scrape out the inside of the vanilla bean and add it to the mixture, stirring the mixture frequently. Set the vanilla bean pod aside for later.
  4. Once the mixture begins to simmer, use an immersion blender to blend the ice cream for about 30 seconds. Alternatively, you can pour the mixture into a blender and blend it that way.
  5. Stir in the vanilla extract and place the vanilla bean pod in the mixture.
  6. Pour the hot mixture into an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 4 hours until completely chilled.
  7. Remove the vanilla bean pod and freeze the mixture in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's directions.
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Recipe adapted from Serious Eats
If you don’t have vanilla sugar, you can use regular unbleached granulated sugar.

Vegan Almond Biscotti

Vegan Almond Biscotti

So I’ve just completed my first full week of being vegan, and even though I didn’t think it would be too much of a stretch from my usual pescetarian diet, it’s been a learning experience. I’ve learned that I have to read the labels on errrything and I can no longer spoon Nutella into my mouth and call it dinner. Eating out is tricky and Thai food is my new best friend. Basically, I just have to put a lot more thought into my food and I’m shocked at how many things contain animal products.

I’ve had a few mishaps as well, such as eating honey mustard potato chips because I totally forgot that honey wasn’t vegan. It also occurred to me after I had finished drinking my favorite beer┬áthat milk stout probably isn’t vegan either. But mishaps and all, I’m still plugging along with my month long vegan experiment.

I’ve always believed that vegan baked goods were not lacking in any way, but these biscotti have me convinced. Who says biscotti need eggs? I tested several recipes before coming upon this one, and I knew it was blog worthy when I couldn’t pass by the kitchen without grabbing one. They were also deemed acceptable currency to pay Aaron (who formerly turned up his nose at biscotti) for his hand modeling skillz.

Vegan Almond Biscotti

This recipe makes a small batch, because clearly, I cannot be trusted around biscotti. However, it can easily be doubled. If you like (and why wouldn’t you?), you can drizzle the biscotti with bittersweet chocolate. Can I just say how happy I am that most of my favorite dark chocolate is vegan?

Vegan Almond Biscotti

Vegan Almond Biscotti

Yield: about 10 cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated (unbleached) sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (or vegetable, canola, or grapeseed oil)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 cup (50 grams) toasted almonds, coarsely chopped
  • For the chocolate drizzle:
  • 1/4 cup (40 grams) bittersweet chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees fahrenheit and line one cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a separate bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the sugar, applesauce, oil, and both extracts.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently stir them together.
  5. When the ingredients are almost combined, add the toasted almonds and knead the mixture together with your hands until the ingredients are combined.
  6. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a large rectangle, about 3 inches wide and 3/4 of an inch thick.
  7. Bake for 25 minutes.
  8. Remove the oven, turn the temperature down to 300 degrees fahrenheit, and let cool on a wire rack for 10-15 minutes.
  9. Use a serrated knife to cut the biscotti into one inch pieces.
  10. Return the pieces onto the cookie sheet and bake for additional 8-10 minutes on each side, depending on your desired crispness.
  11. Cool completely.
  12. If you want to drizzle the biscotti with chocolate, put the chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl and microwave on medium in 30 seconds intervals, stirring in between each until the chocolate is melted.
  13. Put the melted chocolate in a plastic bag, snip a small amount off one corner, and drizzle over the biscotti.
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Biscotti recipe adapted from food.com