Brownies, Cookies & Nut Bread For The Holidays


December is so festive, no matter what religion or spiritual path you follow.
Desserts seem to be a central theme, so let’s look at alternatives to the sugary,
floury health enemies and go for the lighter, health-promoting ones.


Melt in saucepan, or even baking dish (8" x 8"):
1/2 cup organic ghee, or I stick organic butter (for dairy free, use organic virgin
coconut oil)

Add and blend in:
1/2 cup organic carob powder
1 cup organic Raisin Paste (see below)
1 tsp. organic vanilla extract
1 tsp. organic peppermint extract
2 organic eggs (or egg substitute for vegans)

Mix together and add to above mixture:
1 cup almond meal
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt

Bake 25-30 minutes at 350 degrees. Will be fudge-like when cooled if you do not overbake
it. Top should almost bounce back when touched. Cover immediately for more fudge-like

Raisin paste: You can keep this in fridge for weeks. Place 1 cup raisins in jar with
1-1/2 cups water (or less, for more concentrated sweet). Soak raisins overnight or
longer in refrigerator. Blend in blender to make paste.

Here’s a great recipe to make ginger-bread people with. Use organic raisins or other
organic dried, cut fruit to decorate eyes, nose, mouth and buttons.

2 cups organic flour ( I’ve used kamut or barley, usually combined with spelt, and
rice flour would work as well)
1/4 tsp. Celtic or Krystal Himalayan sea salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. organic cinnamon
1/4 tsp. organic allspice
1/4 tsp. organic cloves

Blend in blender
1/2 cup organic butter or ghee, or virgin coconut oil, or combination thereof, with
about 2 inches fresh ginger root, peeled and sliced. Add to flour mixture.

Add and mix in:
1/3 to 1/2 cup maple syrup (depending on how sweet you want it)
1 Tbsp. molasses

Roll out between waxed paper to about 1/4 inch thick, then put in freezer for about
10 minutes. Press out with cookie cutters (or cut into shapes). You may need to use
spatula to get off waxed paper and onto cookie sheet, as batter is soft, and bake
350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, or until brown.

Thinking of fruit cake gifts for the holidays? Why not make it real fruit that doesn’t
even need added sweetener, except nature’s own sweet.

Mash 3 large-size (or four medium, or five small) ripe bananas in a large bowl. Beat
1 egg
1/2 cup organic Raisin Paste (see brownie recipe above)
1 stick softened organic butter (or 1/2 cup virgin organic coconut oil (I often combine
them and use 1/4 cup each)

Mix or sift together:
2 cups organic flour (whole grain – you also can use rice flour, barley, kamut,
oat, spelt, sorghum, or a combination – barley, kamut and spelt combine well with
good results, and it seems to digest well. For gluten-free needs, use sorghum, rice
or other gluten-free flours combined.)
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. Celtic or Krystal Himalayan Sea Salt

Add flour mixture to banana mixture, along with:
1/2 cup to 1 cup chopped organic walnuts or pecans

Add for variety (for different flavors): 1 whole organic orange peel, grated (on
large grate if you’re in a hurry or like the robust flavor) or organic shredded coconut
(1/4 to 1/2 cup) or I tsp. organic cinnamon or organic raisins and sunflower seeds
(about 1 cup total combined.) Bake in two small bread pans, or in a Bundt pan or
9" cake pan at 350 degrees for 1/2 hour to 3/4 hour or more. Wait until top
starts to get firm, glossy and golden and then press down gently with your finger.
If it bounces back, it’s done. Don’t let it get too brown. After it cools for about
1/2 hour, cover or eat.

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Debbie Johnson
Debbie Johnson is the owner/founder of The Golden Chalice Natural Foods Restaurant and Gallery in Chanhassen, MN. Visit or call Debbie at (952) 941-4150. Copyright © 2006 Debbie Johnson. All rights reserved


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