Tuesday, October 22, 2013

White Bean Chocolate Chip Cookies

I was super excited when I got my pressure cooker last year.  Within a week of getting it, I had made almost every bean dish that exists in the world.  And then for some reason, I fell out of love with my handy little pressure cooker and didn't touch it for months. It's a sad thing when kitchen gadgets lose their novelty. :(  Of course, this is total crazy talk because pressure cookers have been around forever and they make cooking dried beans so darn easy.  So, I pulled out my pressure cooker and went a little overboard with the white beans this week.  I'll be eating white beans for a while, which is a good thing in my book.  

Luckily, white beans can be used in so many dishes, including dessert!  I decided to play around with my previous lima bean cookie recipe.  I just thought I'd make a few small adjustments.  Don't you ever look back at one of your recipes and think, "What was I thinking?"  I thought the lima bean cookies were great, but I probably didn't give it due diligence in terms of recipe testing. I still don't know if this iteration is ready for prime time, but here it is anyway.  :)

Makes 1 dozen cookies

1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup cooked white beans (I used navy beans)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups spelt flour (or other whole grain flour)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips
1/2 cup sliced or chopped almonds (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Blend the oil, sugar, maple syrup, beans, and vanilla extract in a blender or food processor.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. 
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  5. Fold in the chocolate chips and almonds.
  6. Using a cookie scoop or your hands, form tablespoon-sized balls of dough and place them on the baking sheet. Flatten each ball slightly using your fingers.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the edges are lightly browned.
  8. Leave the cookies on the baking sheet for a minute before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
As you can see from the ingredient list, these are basically your standard chocolate chip cookies, but with white beans added to the mix.  These were cakey cookies, which is the opposite of what you'd expect from cookie dough that's partially made of beans.  I didn't increase the amount of beans used in the original recipe, so I'm still curious to see what will happen if I do.  A third of a cup of bean purée isn't really much...but then again, we're not trying to make bean burgers here.  :)

I know half a cup of sugar, in addition to maple syrup, for only a dozen cookies may seem like a lot of sweetness, but coconut palm sugar isn't really that sweet. If you make these with another type of granulated sugar, you can probably decrease the amount to 1/4 cup.

The verdict? These cookies were a delicious and near guilt-free treat.  I love the fact that white beans are included because I'm a big fan of using typically savory ingredients in desserts.  Texture-wise, these may not satisfy chocolate chip cookie connoisseurs who swear by the crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside combo.  But all in all, I'd definitely make these again, especially since I've fallen back in love with my pressure cooker and foresee an abundance of beans in my kitchen. :)