Sunday, September 9, 2007

Vanilla Rosewater Halvah Cookies & Chickpea Broccoli Casserole

Okay, so it's not really halvah in the center, but I needed a good name for these cookies that didn't sound like I had put sesame seeds on top or something.


These look all cracked out, but they're soooo good. I got the idea after seeing Bazu's cookies that she got the idea from Damn Tasty Vegan. The other pictures are way better than mine, but since I was sort of experimenting, I think it's okay that they turned out a little wacky. Substituting the peanut butter for tahini made some rich freaking cookies, but in a way that's good because I can't really eat more than a couple at a time.

Next time I make these, I need to add more flour. I think that's why mine are all weird shaped. I sorta realized that I needed to add more flour after trying to shape the first one, but I was tired and didn't feel like remixing the dough, so I figured that it would give me an excuse to make these again. Any excuse to make cookies is a good one.


Piper was watching me make the cookies from on top the fridge. It was so cute, she was like this entire time! I thought for sure she'd jump down to try and help, but she stayed up there and supervised.

If you make these, try adding about another 1/4 to 1/2 cup of flour. Just add a little at a time until the dough feels like dough and isn't quite so sticky. Also, I added the vanilla bean just because I wanted a reason to use one. You don't have to put that in yours. I just really love the nuances you can get from fresh vanilla. You could also leave out the rosewater if you want. I just like the smell.

Vanilla Rosewater Halvah Cookies

2 cups flour
1/2 cup vanilla cookies, crushed to a powder or just use this much extra flour (I used Nature's Path Vanilla Animal Cookies)
1/2 teas. baking soda
1/2 cup margarine, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup soy milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 vanilla bean pod (optional)

1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar
3/4 cup tahini
1/3 cup chopped pistachios
1 teaspoon rosewater (optional)

Preheat oven to 350. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

In a bowl, add the flour, cookie crumbs and baking soda. Stir it until they're all friendly and stuff. In another, larger bowl add the margarine, sugar and brown sugar. Beat that together just until it's combined. Add the soymilk and vanilla extract and beat that sucker for a minute or two so that everything gets mixed and just starts to get a little fluffy. Scrape the vanilla bean pod into the bowl and stir just enough to get the cute little vanilla specks all mixed in. Fold the dry stuff into the wet until everything's combined.

Make sure your dough is like dough and not sticky when you put in your hand and try to flatten it. If it is, add more flour!

To make the filling, beat the powdered sugar, tahini and rosewater until you feel like the sugar has been incorporated into the tahini. Add the pistachios and stir them in evenly.

Take about 2 tablespoons of dough and flatten it into a little circle in your hand or on some parchment paper. Put a generous teaspoon of the tahini mixture in the center and fold the dough over itself, sort of in half. Make sure that there is no filling peaking out, you'll want to mush some dough up over any places that it's peaking out.

At this point, you can shape it into whatever you want. The original recipe said to roll the dough into a ball at this point, but for some reason I decided to make little moons. Everyone else's pictures look way prettier than mine, so maybe you better do the ball thing.


These should be a little ways apart from each other on the parchment paper covered baking sheet because they're gonna spread, especially if you made a wacky shape like I did. Bake them for 8-10 minutes, until they surface just starts to crack and they're turning a bit more golden.

Cool them on the cookie sheet for a minute or two and then transfer them to a wire cooling rack for 5 minutes or so before you start chowing down.

You'll get 2 dozen cookies out of this.


I also finally made the Chickpea Broccoli Casserole from Vegan with a Vengeance. I had been wanting to try it, but the description kinda put me off. Isa, this is not bland to me at all.


I made this for Roman and myself while we were watching Fistful of Dollars and For a Few Dollars More. Yay for spaghetti westerns and yummy food!

I made a few changes based on what I had read from other people's blogs and the ppk forums peeps when they tried this. Instead of bread crumbs, I took 3 pieces of sprouted grain bread and toasted it very well, let it cool then put it in the processor and made my own bread crumbs.

Stirred up veggies getting ready to be turned into a Chickpea Broccoli Casserole!

I also used 2 cups of veggie broth instead of just one and added an extra tablespoon or two of olive oil. I'm glad I did, it gave it a fabulous flavor. I could taste the olive oil flavor, but didn't notice that there was any extra oil in the casserole.


We experimented with putting some different condiment type things on it. We both loved it just as it was, but it was fun trying stuff. Our favorites were salt-free Spike and Cholula hot sauce. I'm not one to put hot sauce on everything like Roman does, but he was right on with the suggestion to try that on this. I didn't douse it or anything, but it really added a nice punch of flavor.

This reheated really well, too. I ate the leftovers both yesterday and today and I put the last bit in a container to take the work for lunch tomorrow. We got 5 servings out of this (we had seconds the first night or we could have probably gotten 6).

I made a bunch of other stuff, too, but I think this post has already gotten long enough. More of the weekend cooking later in the week.


  1. What an *awesome* take on those cookies! Yours look so good, and the flavor combination rocks. (I'm a big fan of sesame anything). You probably needed more flour to replace the bulk of the cocoa that you took out... but who cares? These look great anyway.

  2. Hi! Im vegan also! Came across your blog by accident. Brilliant!! Well done. Love the pics and the way it is written.

  3. Cookies look so good. I have to try this sometime!

  4. It is lovely cooking in a kitchen with a cat, isn't it? I'm sure he was not tempted by your lovely Chickpea Broccoli Casserole, but I certainly am!