Flourless Chocolate Chip Cookies

Sierra’s learned how to say ‘cookie’ – and knows what the word means – so all I can think is: I’m in for it now. Still, as her current favorite thing seems to be bananas (‘nana!’) and she had lentils and cauliflower for dinner tonight, I think she can indulge in a nibble or two of the occasional sweet treat. Especially when the temperature here in the Kingdom is pushing 100 degrees F in March; we could all use a little reward for getting through the day. In other non-news, I’ve been oddly craving pancakes for dinner the past few days but have ‘settled’ for quinoa with beets and greens and tahini sauce with a chaser of a plate of flourless chocolate chip cookies. Pancakes tomorrow maybe.

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Checking In (+ Yellow Butter Cake)


[On the Wadi Trail, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, March 2015.]

We moved into our new house last weekend and I’ve already baked a lemon yogurt cake, made lots of fruit compotes for a certain someone, did the requisite pot of quinoa and roasted a chicken … So, not much has changed kitchen-wise other than my current abode’s offering is much tinier and darker than my last lovely tiled and light-filled space and I’m a bit thin in the wares department. Still, we’ve transitioned OK-ish and I remain grateful we came over to Riyadh from Casablanca rather than going back to the States first. Flying long distances plus time differences when you have a little one adds the sort of dimension to travel that almost makes you want to stay home (only almost) or at least slate a long stretch of time to stay when you get there. That’s to say, pretty much, that I am looking forward to a nice summer of California time because a) there’s no way we are staying in the desert when temperatures can reach upwards of 120 degrees F and b) have I mentioned how … interesting … long haul flights are with an 18-month-old?

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Ever Onward (+ Little Applesauce-Spice Cakes)

In the yard, February 2015.

As I sit here eating (vegan) chocolate chunk cookies and swilling coffee, the thought occurs: wasn’t this blog once more about vegetarian food than sweets? I blame flourless. - which is finally back in stock on amazon and elsewhere; yippee! – and all the recipe testing that occurred during its creation. I always baked a lot, but things really ramped up two years ago when I was in the depths of writing the book and not much has changed since. Though in my defense I do still make and eat a lot of vegetables: Last night I had a bowl of delicious sweet potato/parsnip soup and piled lemony sauteed brussels sprouts atop quinoa and it satisfied my typical wintry cravings for vegetables and whole grains. Yet we’re on the cusp of yet another life change and thus I bake ever more, or at least I tell myself that’s the reason why. Strangely it does seem to help ease the transition.

While Morocco and I haven’t always been friends I made a sort of peace with my life here last fall — just in time to learn we’ll be packing up and leaving. Ain’t that always the way … And while there’s a lot I won’t miss the nostalgia factor is strong. This is after all the place where my baby took her first steps, said her first words, played in the grass for the first time, made friends with construction workers, nannies, and neighbors alike, chased the cats lingering outside our garden walls. I’ve finally! slipped into a routine, made friends, know the drill and while it’s not perfect I find that on the cusp of moving on that my somewhat rut has become a mostly comfortable one. Since I’m still rather sleep deprived the reality of packing up and starting again is not exactly an exciting one. But, such is life. And as the cliche goes as long as we have each other home can be anywhere – that’s no joke. Especially if there are sweets.

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