For anyone that’s talked to me at least once in the last three months, you’ll know that ‘cleansing’ has become a part of my daily routine. What this means is that I’m continually striving to rid my diet of preservatives by eating whole foods and trying my best to eliminate wheat, dairy and refined sugars.
On one hand I feel amazing. My body has a sense of clarity and lightness that I’m adamant on maintaining. On the other hand, sometimes I just want to eat a cookie. Maybe a scoop of ice cream. Definitely a poutine.
The goal of all of this is to eventually move away from strict periods of cleansing, with a start and end date, to a sustainable routine for everyday life. Where eating a cookie, some ice cream, and maybe even a poutine is okay … every once in a while.
I’ve found that the best way to survive is to find healthy and clean alternatives to the things I crave the most. Now the important thing to remember is that rarely will these things every really substitute for what I’m missing. But they can help curb the craving. A kale chip will never give me the same satisfaction as a potato chip, but I’ll get the salt and the crunch, and often that’s all I’ll need to keep me from running to the 24-hour convince store across the street for a bag of crunchy cheetos at 11pm.
Cheetos aside, my most prevalent craving is for sweets, namely baked goods. So, when I’d heard someone mention black bean cookies my interest was peaked. Being Asian, and subsequently living in Korea (home of the black bean filled waffle fish, for lack of a better description), I am familiar with the idea of beans as sweets.
Taking to the interweb, I quickly found a simple recipe that I could make some minor substitutions to make the ‘cookies’ gluten and dairy free. For sugar, I opted out of white sugar or honey, and went with some coconut palm sugar that I left over in my pantry.
Again, this is not a tollhouse double fudge chocolate chip cookie. Mrs. Fields won’t likely be adding this recipe to their portfolio anytime soon. But, that’s not what I was going for. I wanted something chocolaty that bears a standard resemblance to a cookie and in this case, it’s enough.
Recipe below (adapted from A Couple Cooks)
· 1½ cups canned black beans (drained)
· 2 tablespoons olive oil – I used coconut oil
· 2 tablespoons peanut/almond butter
· 2 tablespoons almond milk
· ½ cup honey – I used coconut palm sugar
· 5 tablespoons cocoa powder
· 3 tablespoons whole wheat flour – I used coconut flour
· 1 teaspoon baking powder
· ¾ to 1 teaspoon kosher salt
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
2. Rinse the beans and drain them; save out 48 beans for decoration (3 per cookie – or omit this step if desired). In the bowl of a food processor, add the remainder of the black beans, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 tablespoons peanut butter, 2 tablespoons milk, and ½ cup honey. Blend until smooth.
3. Add 5 tablespoons cocoa powder, 3 tablespoons flour,1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon baking powder and ¾ to 1 teaspoon kosher salt to the bean mixture and blend until smooth and the batter resembles a thick mousse.
4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spoon 16 evenly distributed dollops of batter. Bake for around 10 minutes (the cookies should still be a little soft when you remove them from the oven). Place the saved black beans on top. Set aside a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.