Chocolate-Chili Peanut Butter Cookies

So I spent yesterday cooking and cleaning, like you do (the work room is now actually workable – go me!) and trying out my shiny new dehydrator. I’ll do a separate post about that experience (it was fine, but I learned a few things) shortly. For now, though, I want to post this handy-dandy recipe I came up with yesterday.
Note: Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of “healthy cookies” – stuff that, while still chock full of sweet stuff, was made with a mixture of relatively-high-nutrition flours (whole wheat + ground almonds + whole cooked millet, for example) and relatively low-glycemic-index sugars (like fruit butter rather than refined, granulated straight-up-sugar).
Readers, these are not that kind of cookie.
I made them because I’ve been wanting peanut-butter cookies since last week[1] and I finally had the time to sit around and just get them made. 🙂
Here’s the recipe:
Chocolate-Chili Peanut Butter Cookies
¾ C “just peanuts” peanut butter (other nut or seed butters work well, too)
¼ C oil (butter works, too)
¼ C maple syrup
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1 tbsp vanilla (I use the fake stuff)
2 eggs
¾ C granulated sugar
¼ C cassonade (maple sugar)
1 C flour
½ C cocoa
2 tsp instant (decaf) coffee powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp chili powder
¼ tsp salt
Dash of cayenne pepper
½ C crumbled walnuts (cashews would be great here!)
1 C chocolate chips
Mix everything together in a big bowl
Drop (by the teaspoon-full) onto a greased cookie sheet
Bake at 375F for ~10 minutes
Allow to cool (and firm up) for 3-5 minutes before removing from the cookie sheet and either (a) eating, or (b) allowing to cool completely.
Makes about 40 cookies
Some notes:
I would not normally have been using cassonade in this recipe. I ran out of granulated (cane) sugar and figured I’d try it as an experiment. The next time I make this, I’m more likely to use 1C dark brown sugar in the hopes of adding a slightly caramel-ish tinge to the flavour.
I might nix the maple syrup, too, and opt for a couple of tablespoons of pear or pumpkin butter. I know. I said “NOT HEALTHY” and they still wouldn’t be. But I think pear and pumpkin would both go nicely with this mix of cocoa, creamy nuts, and firey spices, and I’d like to try it.
[1] I swear, when I found the ONLY “just peanuts” option for peanut butter available at my local grocery store[2], I was so, like, “Thank you gods!” We’ve been out of peanut butter for an age and it was starting to grate on me.
[2] Let me rephrase that: The only “just peanuts” option that wasn’t the super-expensive organic-in-a-glass-jar peanuts/cashews/hemp/almond/etc option. I love that stuff, but it was a little too rich for my blood on my last grocery trip.

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