Posted on | Saturday, February 12, 2011 | No Comments

I really like making cookies. I like mixing together the ingredients and dolloping them onto a baking sheet. I like how the smells can permeate my house in the best possible way. I like taking that first bite when a cookie is fresh out of the oven and just a tad bit too hot. Above all though, I like when my cookies are not only good, but good for me.

Which brings us to the incredible fruit that has become my go-to ingredient in baking cookies this past month.

The banana.

For me, healthy baking is all about substitution. Using applesauce (or in this case bananas) instead of sugar while simultaneously replacing some of the needed thickening agents. Whole wheat flour instead of white, dried fruit and chopped nuts instead of chocolate chips. I still have a hard time finding an adequate replacement for butter, though. Oil just doesn't seem to work the same kind of magic. Pity.

I've gotten my banana cookie making down to a science. Or maybe it's more of an art. Either way I've stopped using recipes and instead I've begun playing it by eye. I'm rather impressed with myself that I should dare to take such a risk. Last week it was honey banana nut cookies. This week I switched things around and added rolled oats and chopped dates and subtracted the honey. Both versions were divine.

If I had to guess I'd say used about one cup of whole wheat flower, 3/4 cup of rolled oats, a large pinch of nutmeg cinnamon and salt each, half a teaspoon of baking powder, three very ripe bananas, one egg, 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts, 1/2 cup of dates, and a little over half a stick of butter. Wet ingredients first then mixed gradually with the dry. Once a good batter is formed and drop a large teaspoon's worth per cookie onto the baking sheet. Then it's into the oven for ten minutes at 350*.

The recipe easily makes four dozen cookies. More if you make them all the small side. They're light and chewy while also packing a good bit of sweetness and flavor (not to mention fiber and nutrients). I don't plan on eating all fifty-some-odd cookies by myself, but even if I did I wouldn't feel too guilty. Something this full of healthy ingredients can't be that bad for you.



Photobucket I was born and raised in California. I have also lived in Hungary, Texas, Alabama, Oklahoma, and I will be moving again this summer. Kael is my incredibly awesome kiddo who is growing up far too quickly, and Alex is my fiance who makes me happier than should be legally allowed. I write about them a lot. I'm mildly obsessed with cooking and photography. I write about those things, too.