Hey everyone! Happy Top Chef Wednesday!
Top Chef All-Stars is getting good. Actually, it's been good all season and now it's getting, really, really good. It's hard to say who will be in the final three and who will win. I'm kind of a Richard fan, myself. It seems like everyone wants Carla to win... everyone I've talked to wants Carla or Dale to win. I'm thinking Antonia might surprise everyone and win the whole thing; she's been consistent throughout the whole competition.
I'm such a Top Chef nerd! I'm sorry about that. I don't know what I'll do when this season is over. Who's your favorite Top Chef? Or who do you think is going to win?
Last week the chefs competed in a cookie challenge and the winner won $5,000. Can you imagine? I love cookies and bake them all of the time, but to come up with a recipe that deserves $5,000? That would be difficult... I think I'd crack under the pressure.
Dale won with a pretzel-potato chip shortbread topped with chocolate ganache. That sounds pretty good to me. I'm a little wary of trying that recipe, though. It calls for a bag of potato chips and a bag of pretzels. A whole bag? It must make a ton of cookies.
Why did I bring up that cookie recipe? Now I bet you're all craving chocolate pretzel-potato-shortbread cookies, not my healthy Vegan Banana Carob Chip Cookies.
Oh well. They don't taste healthy. They just taste good... like banana, and oats... and nutty whole wheat flour and almond/cashew butter.
These cookies also contain carob chips. I'd never used or eaten carob until I baked these. I wandered into the health food store one day and bought a bag of carob chips. Then I spent another hour staring at the different types of rice.
Carob does taste similar to chocolate, but it's definitely not chocolate. Chocolate is better. But carob isn't that shabby either. It's like a nuttier chocolate. And it's vegan. Vegans are cool and deserve good cookie recipes.
1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1 large ripe banana, mashed
3/4 cup finely ground toasted cashews or almonds
1/4 cup vegan margarine spread
3 tablespoons oil
2/3 cup raw sugar
1 tablespoon molasses
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup sweetened carob chips
Coat cookie sheets with cooking spray.
In a large mixing bowl, sift together flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt; whisk in oats until combined. In a large mixing bowl, using a mixer on medium speed, beat together banana, ground nuts, margarine, oil, sugar, molasses and vanilla until well combined - about 2 minutes. Reduce mixer speed and beat in flour mixture until combined. Stir in carob chips until combined. Chill cookie dough in the freezer for 30 minutes.
Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Take heaping tablespoons of dough, roll into balls and place on cookie sheets; flatten to a 1/2-inch thickness. Bake 12-14 minutes or until golden brown around edges. Cool 1 minute before transferring cookies to wire racks to cool completely.
Makes about 16-18 big cookies