Hooray! Another Wednesday means another awesome guest blogger. Today I’m welcoming the multi-talented Jess from Cupcakes and Kale to The Sweet Life.  I found Jess’s blog about a year and a half ago, right around the time she announced she was pregnant.  From then on I became a regular reader as I soaked in her vegan pregnancy updates and drooled over her delicious food. I don’t know how this girl does it. She owns a record shop with her husband, just started her own little bakery, runs the blog, probably does a thousand other things I don’t know about – all the while raising that adorable vegan tot. If you don’t already, make sure to keep up-to-date with Jess through all her vegan adventures via Facebook and Instagram

Now, please welcome her. Jess, thanks for stopping by! 

Hello Sweet Life readers!  I am so very happy to be here today to fill in with a post while the lovely Sarah is cozied up with her newest little vegan.  (Welcome to the world Nash!)  I’ve been reading Sarah’s blog for ages, and I just love stopping in to see the creative things she bakes up.  So since sweetness is the name of the game here, I wanted to share something sweet with you – here is a cookie so lovely and crunchy, it is just the perfect thing for hot drink dunking, or for stealing a bite when a moment of peace and quiet presents itself.  As a busy mama myself, I know those can be few and far between, but having a cup of tea and one of these cookies to curl up with sure makes for an amazing treat!

Biscotti is one of those cookies that tends to fly under the radar.  They may not be soft and gooey, but they certainly have a good thing going for themselves.  They’re a sturdy cookie, one that holds its own, one that doesn’t crumble when tucked in a bag.  One that’s perfect for dunking in your coffee.  

These cookies came to fruition back in December in the midst of my holiday baking mayhem.  As I was planning our trip to visit my parents for the holidays, I tried to narrow down my baking list for what would travel well and I started to mentally go through personal favourites from my own mama’s cookie tray.  Always present on hers is biscotti, one of my old favourites.  It’s been years since having any of hers, so this year I worked on a vegan version and I can’t get enough of them!  Seriously folks, I think I’ve made them at least 4 times over the past month.  Although they take a bit longer than your average cookie from start to finish, it’s only due to their double baking — the biscotti batter itself can be whipped up in mere minutes — now that’s my kind of cookie!   
These are, dare I say, the perfect cookie to keep on hand at all times for when friends drop in for a visit – with their delicious flavour, perfectly crusty exterior and their slight tenderness when you bite into them, no one will be able to resist having a second!  I hope you (and your guests) love these almond & cacao nib beauties as much as I do.  Happy cookie dunking!
Almond Cacao Biscotti
makes 14
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  1. 1 cup all purpose
  2. ½ cup spelt flour
  3. 2 tsp baking powder
  4. ¼ tsp salt
  5. ¾ c cane sugar
  6. 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  7. 1 tbsp vegetable oil (canola, safflower, etc)
  8. ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  9. 1/3 cup raw almonds, chopped
  10. ¼ cup cacao nibs
  1. Mix the flours, baking powder and salt together in a medium sized bowl. In a second bowl, combine the sugar, applesauce, oil and vanilla and mix well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir to form a thick batter. Fold in the chopped almonds and cacao nibs.
  2. The cookie dough will be sticky, so with floured hands, form into log approximately 3” by 12” on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and square off the ends. Bake at 325f for 25 minutes. Remove and allow to cool for 15 minutes, then with a sharp knife slice into 14 pieces.
  3. Spread the slices out and bake them for a second time for 10-15 minutes. Allow them to cool completely before transferring them to an airtight container where they will keep well for up to a week.
  1. Need to make these in advance? They freeze beautifully for up to a month, provided they are packed up in an airtight container.
My Darling Vegan http://mydarlingvegan.com/

Jess lives in Northern Ontario and is the vegan mama behind Cupcakes and Kale, where she blogs about food, life & co-parenting her sweet little chickpea with her husband Mark. When she’s not cooking up something new or chasing her little one around, she’s busy running her bakery, Oh My Bakeshop. You can connect with Jess on instagramfacebook and twitter.