After reading everyone’s MoFo posts and reveling in the fall weather we’ve had this week, I knew I felt like baking last night. Sometimes I bake to de-stress (a tactic I picked up in high school, that got me through college and that I still use today) and sometimes I do it out of sheer pleasure, which was the case last night. I’m someone who grew up baking way before I learned to cook, so I feel like that’s where my true strength lies. I have so many memories of helping my mom bake about 10 different types of cookies and baked goods for the holidays, and I feel like my love of baking has only gotten stronger since I went vegan.
I couldn’t really pinpoint what I wanted to bake last night, (I’ve been using a LOT of pumpkin) so I scanned my cookbook shelf and came across Hannah Kaminsky’s My Sweet Vegan. I’ve been reading Hannah’s beautiful blog Bittersweet for years, and have always been amazed at all the gorgeous, creative and delicious desserts and foods she thinks up. I know her creations are delicious because I bought her book soon after it came out, and have used it to create goods for so many parties and potlucks over the years.
I came across her recipe for Nut Case Cookies, and it immediately jumped out at me, (mostly because of the awesome pun). It’s one of her recipes that I hadn’t tried yet, and it seemed incredibly customizable. Desiring something a little less sweet but still dessert, I sought out my ingredients.
The recipe urges the baker to use whatever nuts they had on hand, and I appreciated that. Usually I’ll make do with what I have anyway, but I like being told that trading out ingredients won’t totally screw up a recipe. In lieu of the suggested almonds and pistachios with cashews, I subbed in walnuts and pecans.
Whenever a recipe asks me to put ingredients into a stand mixer, I laugh, because I haven’t used one since I left for college. I’m holding out for a KitchenAid, but until then, I beat my butter and sugar by hand, (it’s possible people, but a definite arm workout).
And success! The recipe yielded 3 dozen cookies, but the boyfriend has already decreased that number significantly. The cookies came out perfectly: soft, buttery and rich. I had a few more today as an afternoon snack.
I bought my copy of My Sweet Vegan at Herbivore on a trip to Portland one year and it came signed, (sweet, huh?). But at Vida Vegan Con, I was also lucky to receive another copy in my swag bag. As soon as I saw it, I knew I’d definitely have to have a giveaway for it on the blog as it’s one of my favorites. I also met and had breakfast with Hannah and her lovely mom the Sunday of VVC, and I can affirm that she’s just as sweet in person as you’d ever imagine.
For a chance to win a copy of My Sweet Vegan, leave a comment on this post telling me what your favorite vegan baked item to give to your non-vegan friends is. If you linkback to this post on your own blog or follow me on Twitter (@veganmoxie) and tweet about it, you’ll get extra entries to win.
You can enter by any of these methods until Thursday, Oct. 20 at 9 p.m. PST. This contest is open to anyone, anywhere! I’ll pick a winner at random and announce it here on that day/time. Good luck, baked good lovers!