Holiday

Jam Thumbprint Cookies

title2

I’m still eating vegan and still going strong! It’s been nice to get so much support from friends & family, but it’s also been (truly) not that big of a deal. Which is awesome! It’s a good feeling.

DSC_0001

I’ve also really enjoyed making vegan versions of things, including those yummy peanut butter balls. Funnily enough, Angela of Oh She Glows made her own recipe for those that looks a whole lot healthier than mine but seems just as tasty! I wish she’d posted it just a week earlier…oh well, at the rate they’re disappearing in my house, I’ll probably have to make another batch soon enough, and maybe I’ll give her recipe a try.

DSC_0012

In the meantime, I tried my hand at another old classic, the jam thumbprint cookie. I found the recipe on Keepin’ It Kind, a vegan website that actually hosts a virtual Christmas cookie swap every year! How cool is that? These are raspberry almond thumbprint cookies by Ketty of Luminous Vegans.

These cookies taste different than the non-vegan version, but since I haven’t had a regular jam thumbprint in a very long time, I can’t tell you exactly how they differ (helpfulness is my specialty, obviously). These are chewier, and taste deliciously of almonds, that much I know.

Ingredients

Makes 24 cookies

  • 4 tbsp of solid coconut oil (don’t melt it!)
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup packed ground almonds (the original recipe doesn’t state if the ground almonds should be packed into the measuring cup, but I did and they turned out great. I ground my almonds whole and raw in the food processor.)
  • 2-3 tbsp almond milk (I found I needed a bit more almond milk than the recipe called for to hold the dough together)
  • ~2 tbsp jam of your choice (I used a summer fruit jam)

Set your oven to 350F. Mix together the oil, sugar and extracts until you get a consistency similar to creamed butter and sugar. In a separate bowl, mix your dry ingredients: flour, baking soda and ground almonds.

DSC_0114

Incorporate the dry ingredients into the sugar and oil mixture. It will probably not seem to come together very well, but after you add the almond milk it should form a dough that holds together when it’s squeezed. Knead the dough and shape it so it forms a ball.

Roll the dough into approximately 1 inch balls. Now for the fun part! Use your thumb to press indentations into the cookies. If they crack a little it’s okay, that’s part of their rustic charm don’t cha know.

DSC_0120

Bake for 6 minutes in the preheated oven. Then remove the cookies and use the back of a teaspoon to press the indentations in again, as they might have flattened out during baking. Then spoon about a 1/4 tsp of jam into each one. Bake for another 6-10 minutes (mine took around 10 more) until they are slightly browned around the edges. Sprinkle with powdered sugar!

DSC_0156

My house is slowly becoming dangerously full of delicious vegan treats. Yikes! Happily, they’re so tasty that even the non-vegans who live here are eating them too.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Photo thanks to Neal

Today, love.

Appreciate, pamper, coddle, cuddle, hug, smile, reach out, embrace, accept.

Be kind, patient, happy, honest, caring.

Write that letter. Pick up that phone. Send that text. Reconnect.

Don’t expect, wish, or hope. Just appreciate.

This Valentine’s Day, don’t buy into the hype. No disappointment if you don’t get a candy-gram or a bunch of flowers. No shame that you don’t have a Valentine. No anger that your boyfriend ‘didn’t do enough’.  Let today serve as a reminder of how lucky you are to be surrounded by such magnificent human beings who love every inch of you! Be grateful for the people you love, and be happy just to spend time with them.

And make sure to take some time today to love yourself! Treat yourself to a day full of little luxuries, smiles, and unconditional love.

There are so many cynics out there about Valentine’s, but what a wonderful holiday – a day created to remind you to love the ones you love.

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

xoxo,

New Years Resolutions 2011

This post was updated January 1st, 2012!

Happy 2011!! Are you as excited as me about this brand new start, clean slate, chance for reflection and growth? Here’s how excited I am: me and one of my biffles, Isabelle, rang in the new year with champagne, a bonfire and stinky cheeses before reading ‘Oh! The Places You’ll Go‘ and brainstorming ideas and resolutions for 2011. We got out pens and paper and wrote down all the things we’d like to be better at, & all the things we’d like to accomplish before this time next year. No dream was too big, and there was absolutely no ‘reality’ check/negativity/cynicism, since dreams need encouragement in order to be achieved! We got all giddy and excited about the possibilities that the future holds, and now I am more jazzed up than ever! Bring it on 2011. :)

Looking back to my 2010 resolutions, I can see that I made a mistake. I was fairly vague in some of my resolutions: “take more chances” and “update my blog more” are not, in my opinion, very clear or easy to achieve. There’s no way of knowing if you’ve really succeeded! So even though I think I accomplished about 7/10 of my last year’s resolutions, it’s not concrete enough for me. I’d prefer goals that I can easily check off: done. That’s why this year, I’m only putting on specific, clear goals. Even though this type of resolutions are a bit scarier to put into words than the vague kind (ex. “be a better friend”), I think they’ll ultimately be more effective for me. They’ll kick my butt into high gear! So without further ado, my resolutions for 2011:

Personal Goals

By personal goals, I mean concrete, specific achievements I’d like to accomplish by 2012.

  • Post on my blog at least twice a week. Actual total: 78.
  • Read 100 books. Actual total: 50. 
  • Get a massage. Blissful, in Cancun!
  • Spend 1 month eating vegan. Not quite a month. About 2 weeks. 
  • Attend TEDxMcGill. Check!
  • Complete some kind of physical challenge. Did not accomplish this one.
  • Participate in NaNoWriMo. Check!
  • Watch the Top 250 movies on IMDB. Not even close. But this goal taught me something important: I’m not that crazy about watching movies!
  • Do one cultural activity per month
  • Save $1000.00 for travelling.
  • Get into the honours psychology program at my school. I applied, but didn’t make it.
  • Get a pet of some kind. Didn’t do this one! 
  • Host a dinner party.
  • Do some sort of detox.
  • Go on a retreat. I wish I had gotten my act together on this one, but I didn’t make the time. 
  • Attend a conference on something I find fascinating. Does TED count?!
  • Have photos and writing published.
  • Find my dream apartment. Maybe not my dream apartment forever, but definitely for now!

Focuses

By focuses, I mean non-specific, vague ways that I’d like to improve.

  • Bring joy to others
  • Live in the moment
  • Say yes, be open to new experiences
  • Health & nutrition
  • Unconventional moneymaking
  • Be calmer & more zen
  • Travel
  • Make a difference
  • Practice my French
  • Practice my photography
  • Be a better friend
  • Eat consciously
  • Cut down on Facebook and television

What are your goals and focuses for the coming year?

xoxo,

Scroll to Top