My Saturday morning ritual begins with tea and some reading to get into the right mindset before starting the day. I linger in bed, holding on to every precious minute of solitude, as I appreciate the power a single moment can bring.
Under the watchful eye of my dog, I rise to the sound of his tail wagging in a rhythmic beat against the wooden floor. Excited and hungry, I feed him. I grab my gym bag and head out the door for a workout of spinning and yoga, a routine that will put a smile in my mind and rejuvenate my body. I can’t think of any better way to celebrate the weekend. Seriously.
Ready to greet the festive atmosphere of music and local food, can only mean it’s time for the farmers’ market stroll. The street is bursting with color, flavor, and the sweet smell of spring that is so uplifting. I snag a sunny spot outside at a nearby café, and order a tall glass of New Orleans style iced-coffee, à la Blue Bottle. Bien sûr! Blue Bottle, famous for its coffee, carefully selects their beans from growers around the world, and use each batch within 48 hours after it’s been roasted. Can it get any better?
I return home and settle in the kitchen with a cooking project that will feed my soul. Baking cookies is a weekend thing, and although my kids are grown, it still fills up my heart to set a plate of cookies out for them. Even, if only in spirit.
I open my cupboard and reach for some leftover pecans, a chocolate bar, and a container of oats. Hmm, looks like a great beginning for an oatmeal chocolate chunk cookie recipe. Before I pop them in the oven, I sprinkle a little kosher salt over the top, as an afterthought. Sweet and salty is always a good combination.
The sweet aroma of deliciousness coming out of my kitchen sends a wave of nostalgia over me. I break open a warm cookie and take a bite. The melted chocolate, crunchy pecans, and chewy oats bring me comfort like a hug from my kids, and yet, at the same time, reminds me of everything I love about my day. I reach for another cookie.
What is your weekend ritual? Do you have a special recipe you make every weekend?
Salty Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies
This is a lovely vegan cookie recipe that is easy to prepare. Try substituting the flour for oats or pecans, if you prefer gluten-free.
2 cups oats
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 cup finely ground pecans
¼ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
¾ cup maple syrup
½ cup canola oil
zest of an orange
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup raisins
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
Kosher salt or fleur de sel
Preheat oven 350˚
Combine oats, flour, ground pecans, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl.
Stir in maple syrup, canola oil, orange zest, and vanilla extract. Add raisins, chopped chocolate and mix to combine. The batter will be sticky.
Using an ice-cream scoop, drop the cookie dough form on to a parchment-lined sheet pan. Sprinkle a little bit of kosher salt or fleur de sel over the top of the cookies.
Bake at 350˚ for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from pan to a cooling rack. Makes 2 dozen.