The holidays are steadily approaching, carrying with them the weight of end of term exams, summatives, crazy family get togethers, and of course - Christmas shopping. As we grow older, Christmas loses some of it's mystic, it's magic - but it still holds that inexorable pull over us. It says forget all these grey days that came before and all those grey days that will come after; savour this brief and imperfect respite. Savour it even though you don't know how you feel about such an extravagant example of consumerism, about the fact that Christmas - a religious event singular to one religion - takes prevalence over all other religious holidays, about the size of your budget, about all this goddamn wrapping paper going straight to the landfill. Avoid those stupid-ass gift guides like they're the plague - you don't need a glossy magazine to characterize your family and friends into 'sporty' and 'glam'. Just love. Give gifts because you want to, not because you have to. Give openly and freely things that may not seem all that special but truly are - your complete attention, for example, or pancakes (recipe coming next week!) on a blurry weekday morning, a spontaneous dance party, a hug and a kiss and a push-hair-off-the-face and a wide smile and a big, genuine I LOVE YOU.
Don't let your Christmas, or whatever holiday you celebrate, be reduced to wrapping paper and cries of 'next one!'. Take this chance to breathe, to love, and to give fully of yourself. Admittedly, this post does come a little early, but I wanted to get this off my chest. This season my goal is to be open - arms wide spread, face uplifted, spine like an oak tree, to take care of myself and those whom I love and know, and those I don't.
I don't mean to put down Christmas or the hype that surrounds it. I love Christmas movies, gingerbread men, the whole schtick. But I do not love the want-want-want vibe it gives off from time to time and the pressure it lays across our backs. Ya feel?
Now lets make some motherfucking cookies.
Let's discuss cookies for a bit, shall we? These ones are pretty good. Nutty and chocolaty and if you're lucky (or if you eat enough!) you get a bite of chocolate and a bite of hazelnut together and ahhh it's like Nutella. But it's kinda better for you.
They take a little longer than your average joe of a cookie (but that average joe is boooooring compared to these fellas) and the ingredients, admittedly, run a little costly and sound like an SNL spoof of a yogi's grocery list, but you know what, it is most certainly that time of year so go ahead and treat yo'self!! This cookies are too delish not to be tried. Share them with your neighbours, your kids, your friends, or just keep 'em for yourself. Considering the fact that I just had three for lunch, I am in no position to judge!
2 cups rolled oats
2 cups whole spelt flour (or whole wheat, or white)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of cinnamon
1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)
1/4 cup olive or canola oil
3/4 cup maple syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla extract (yeah b, a whole tablespoon!)
1/2 cup chocolate chippers
3/4 cup toasted hazelnuts
1. Combine dry ingredients in one bowl, wet in the other. (leave out chocolate chips and nuts)
2. Whisk together wet ingredients until fully incorporated, then pour into dry ingredients. Stir well and don't be alarmed - dough will appear super wet. DO NOT ADD MORE FLOUR. DON'T DO IT.
3. Stick your bowl in the fridge and let it chillax for 15 - 20 minutes.
4. In the meantime, preheat your oven to 350.
5. Then toast your nut buddies and chop 'em up into bite sized like pieces.
6. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking mat and set aside.
7. Remove dough from fridge (should be nice and thickened) and stir in chippers and nuts.
8. Grab about two tablespoons worth of dough and roll it into balls. Press it down slightly.
9. Bake 15 minutes, careful to avoid burning the bottoms. If they look a little under done in the middle, don't freak out. They'll firm up when cooled.
10. Eat! Enjoy!