Happy December!

November was my month of healthy eating. 30 days of gluten free and sugar free cooking and baking was a great way to force creativity and hit reset on some bad eating habits. I ate my first gluten-free Thanksgiving dinner and enjoyed some nice attention in the blogosphere for a few of my raw desserts, specifically my Carrot Cake Bites and Pecan Pie TartletsOnly recently have I begun to explore healthy baking and I am amazed at all to be discovered.

But I still believe in indulgence and for that December the perfect month. Get ready for some rich, decadent, ican’tbelieveit’svegan desserts. Gear up that sweet tooth because this month it’s getting real.

First up: Chocolate Peppermint Crinkle Cookies. The classic, fudgy, chocolate brownie cookie just got a little bit better with some added seasonal flair.

 

Chocolate Peppermint Crinkle Cookies

makes 3 dozen

1 cup dutch-process cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup apple sauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp peppermint extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp peppermint candies, crushed (I used about 8 mini candy canes)

1 cup powdered sugar for coating (there will be extra)

In a small bowl combine flour, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.

In a medium bowl or stand up mixer stir together cocoa powder, sugar, apple sauce, oil, and extracts until well blended. Fold in crushed peppermints. Add flour mixture and mix until just combined.

Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill for 4 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Place the powdered sugar in a small bowl.

Remove chilled dough. It will be stiff but still sticky. Roll cookie dough into balls 1 tbsp in size and toss in powdered sugar to coat. Bake for 12-15 minutes (cookies should still be soft on the inside). Remove from oven and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes before transferring onto a wire rack. Allow to cool completely.

Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

 

Are there any particular sweets that remind you of Christmas?
 
I will be making Christmas treats all month long. If you have any specific requests, let me know and I’ll work to fit it in.So far I have scheduled:
 
 
Orange Poppyseed Pound Cake
Chocolate Truffles (Orange, Turkish Coffee, and Peppermint)
Eggnog Bundt Cake
Sandies (aka Mexican Wedding Cookies)
Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge