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A Plate Full of Happiness

Posted Feb 19 2009 6:27pm
From Feb 2009 Recipes and Product Reviews


One of my favorite blogs (food or otherwise) is Culinary in the Desert, by Joe. He and his partner, Jeff (and their GORGEOUS dogs) bake and cook the most amazing things. Recently, he made some homemade graham crackers adapted from an Alton Brown recipe. Because John only eats two of the cookies I make -- peanut butter cookies and graham crackers, I decided to give Joe's recipe a try. After all, every recipe I've tried from his site has turned out to be terrific.

Because you should really go visit Joe's site, I'll just tell you about the alterations I made to the recipe and about the cookies themselves. First, the alterations:

1. Substituted 3 oz of agave nectar for the dark brown sugar, golden syrup, and molasses.
2. I used 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon instead of 1/8 teaspoon because I like my graham crackers cinnamony.
3. I didn't actually use graham flour, but genuine whole wheat flour. Someday I will try it, but times being tight, I'm just going to use up what I have first.

From John's reaction, I probably could have used more agave. In my humble opinion, they were plenty buttery and sweet enough. He said the consistency of these was much closer to the store-bought kind than in the past. I explained that they're never going to be the same because 1. I don't use funny ingredients or shortening and 2. I don't use cane sugar.

From Feb 2009 Recipes and Product Reviews


Agave nectar just doesn't behave the same way that sugar does. It doesn't crystallize, and it doesn't give cookies the same kind of crunch that sugar does. There's no getting around it. However, it will do marvelous things for the flavor and moistness of baked goods. I'll just keep hacking away at it. At least he tried them.

In my estimation, they're very nice buttery, crisp cookies. I'd be happy, in fact, I'd be smiling as I served them. And now, the house smells delicious. Thanks, Joe!
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