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Cookies of Childhood

By Maggie Wiggen, age 15

I make these cookies for our Sangha in Juneau, Alaska. I always use organic ingredients except for baking powder and soda, which I have never seen in organic forms, and sea salt, because the oceans are hard to regulate. I choose sea salt,  because the process by which the salt is gathered is less detrimental to the environment than mining rock salt, which can cause erosion and habitat destruction. You can substitute all whole wheat flour or all unbleached flour if you like, and any additions that make you feel good.

1/3 cup of soft tofu
1/3 cup canola oil (unrefined is preferred)
1/4 cup concentrated fruit juice (any kind except citrus)
1 Tbsp. of vanilla extract
1/2 cup Sucanat or Florida Crystals
1/4 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup unbleached white wheat flour
2 cups rolled oats
1/2 tsp. aluminum-free baking powder (Rumford is good)
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. sea salt
2 cups vegan chocolate chips (Tropical Source or Sunspire)
1 cup chopped walnuts

In a small bowl, blend the flours, soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. Wash the tofu, then blend in a mixer or food processor until creamy. Turn to low, and add the oil, fruit juice concentrate, vanilla, and Sucanat. Mix until Sucanat dissolves somewhat, then add agave nectar. Mix about one more minute until well blended. Add the oats and the flour mixture. Blend two minutes. Fold in the chocolate chips and the walnuts. Drop good-sized tablespoons full of dough on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Flatten the cookies well with your hand or a spoon. The cookies will not spread during baking.

Bake 11-15 minutes at 350 degrees F, rotating cookie sheet every 3 or 4 minutes. For a softer cookie, cool on a flat surface. If you prefer crunchy, cool on a metal cooling rack. Enjoy the fruits of your labor with friends.

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