My mom and sister have always had their own sense of humor. They can send each other into fits of laughter over something before other people (usually including my dad and I) even know what they're talking about. But the whole family laughs over the ridiculous "how is it possible?" series, which my mom and sister made up.
To give you a sense of the silliness, here are two classics: One day a man was walking along and suddenly found himself in a tree. How is this possible?? Answer: Monkeys pulled him up! Or, once there was a man who hated to cook and he never went out to eat, yet he never went hungry. How is this possible?? Answer: He just cooked anyway!
Last weekend I thought of a new version: One day a man made the most delicious chocolate chip cookies and yet used no butter and no eggs. How is this possible?? Answer: They were vegan!
Chris is an occasional baker and when he does bake he tends towards figuring out how to make a delicious baked good healthier but still taste good. About a year ago, he came across a recipe for vegan chocolate chip cookies that used Earth Balance instead of butter and a mixture of ground flaxseed + water instead of eggs. We couldn't believe how good they were! The flaxseed gives the cookies a slightly nutty flavor, and I also love that I can eat the dough with abandon since there are no raw eggs. They also seem to come out picture perfect every time, as opposed to traditional chocolate chip cookies, which sometimes end up too thin.
It seems there's a tendency for vegan baked goods (or any vegan foods) to be characterized as "good...for vegan food." But these cookies are good in their own right; they just happen to also be vegan. So, without further ado:
How is it possible? Chocolate Chip Cookies
adapted from (never home)maker
1 cup Earth Balance butter
1 cup brown sugar
¾ cup natural sugar
2 tbsp flax meal whisked with 5-6 tablespoons water
1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 ½ cup white whole wheat flour
1 ¼ tsp baking soda
3 cups vegan chocolate chips (we've found the Guittard brand and Sunspire brands at our usual grocery stores)
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
Put the Earth Balance out to let it warm to room temperature. In the meantime, whisk together flax meal and water in a small bowl and set aside.
Whisk together the dry ingredients (flours and baking soda) in a medium bowl and set aside.
With an electric mixture, beat the Earth Balance at medium speed until it is lighter and clings to bowl (30-45 seconds).
Keeping beater at medium speed, add both sugars. Continue to cream butter and sugars for about 3 minutes, scraping down bowl as necessary. When done the mixture will be light and fluffy.
Whisk vanilla in with the flax meal/water mixture and add it to the butter and sugar mixture, keeping beater on medium speed. Beat for 3-4 minutes. The mixture should appear fluffy, like whipped cream cheese.
Put the mixer on slowest speed and add the dry ingredients. As soon as the dry ingredients are incorporated, add chocolate chips and fold in.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and drop heaping tablespoons of dough (that you haven't already eaten) into rows.
Bake for 8-10 minutes. Mmmmmmm.....