I have crumbs on my neck and down my back. I noticed them while singing Joan to sleep just now, and realised they must have come from the cookies we baked this morning. We’ve baked a lot of cookies this past month. So much so, that if I were to offer Joan a cookie upon waking, there’s a good chance she’d say no*, because she’s entirely sick of them. How’s that for food habituation?
Cookies began covering my counter following a craving for chocolate chip bites. And then I got to thinking it would be neat to create a nut-free version of this recipe (which I adore and make often) for my clients with nut-free kids. Over the weeks, I trialled many different recipes and received vastly different results, ranging from “fine” to “oh good Lord, no”. We ate batches made with regular wholemeal flour, wholegrain spelt and unbleached white spelt (unbleached spelt, either wholegrain or white, won); with and without tahini (it’s a great addition), using honey instead of maple (the honey cookie was baaaaaaad, so in order to compensate for the price of maple syrup, I reduced the portion); with baking soda and with baking powder (soda works best); and with cacao nibs in place of chocolate (dark chocolate, all the way). It seems I won’t have to tire Joan with constant offerings of “choket chip cookie”s for a while, because, friends, we have ourselves a winner. The cookie I crowned is simple to assemble, bakes in no time, is nut-free AND egg-free (which means Joan’s egg-free pal can eat them), and, most importantly, fulfils the expectations one develops when those three glorious words, “chocolate chip cookie”, are paired together.
* written over the end of April/beginning of May, in dribs and drabs as I catch moments here and there.
DOING: sitting in bed, next to sleeping Joan and a mound of soft toys. It’s 6:47pm. Ben and I planned a date dinner, so I fed Joan early and got her to bed. A pot of water for pasta is coming to the boil as I wait for him to get home from work.
HEARING: the white noise app, “Heavy rain”, drowning out the noise I make while typing on my laptop.
READING: In my last post, I mentioned that I wasn’t super into this book, but it really picked up towards the end and had some good twists. I also liked reading about the frosty Icelandic setting while tucked up in bed. Yesterday I got an alert from the library that this book is ready for me to collect, so that’s next on my list.
LOOKING: forward to dinner. I am HUNGRY. Whenever Ben and I decide to have a date meal, it’s usually pasta. Yesterday I took a portion of lentil + tomato ragu from the freezer, and we’ll eat it with spaghetti and, as always, a greedy portion of parmesan cheese.
And right in front of me is a vase full of green and white. Flowers in my bedroom make me happy.
I had a cookie recipe all lined up to share with you (a chocolate chip cookie recipe, at that), but then I went and made crumble for breakfast, and here we are. After sharing the process on Instagram stories, I received a number of requests for a more detailed recipe. Ben and Joan have gone to the shops for bread, spring onions and a vegetable juice, and I stayed home to write. The Amélie Soundtrack is playing in the background, only slightly louder than the rain hitting the windows, and I’m hoping to get this done before they return. Today feels like a lazy, woollen jumper-wearing, ‘Joan take the lead and order us around’ kind of day. I expect we’ll be having tea parties and pretending to cook scrambled eggs. We may even make real scrambled eggs for lunch.
I grew up eating apple crumble regularly, at least monthly. Does my memory serve me correctly, Mum? It was our most frequent dessert, that I know for sure. Mum’s crumble uses butter, as do most recipes out there, however, months ago, when I saw a recipe that required neither melting butter nor working it in with my hands, I jumped at it. Any recipe with olive oil and maple syrup tends to be a favourite in this house (in fact, those chocolate chip cookies are made with olive oil and maple syrup, too). And although it doesn’t taste quite as delicious as my mum’s crumble, the process is so incredibly simple and satisfying that it has become our default recipe. Here it is. And a happy Sunday to you.
p.s. cookie recipe soon.