Gothic Granola

Tag Archives: Christmas

Sourdough Joins the Mile-High Club

Happy Boxing Day!

Because Audrey, Jr demanded sacrifice, the sourdough starter ended up in the traditional Christmas morning breakfast: Mile-High Cinnamon Roll Bread.

Coincidentally, my friend from Colorado enjoys the Mile High Cinnamon Roll bread immensely (the capital Denver is the Mile-High city). He chooses to violate it with cream cheese while I like it with Earth Balance. Whatever floats your boat, man.

Mile High Cin Roll Bread | Gothic Granola


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Apocalyptic Waffles

Of the inspirational folk who I follow on teh interwebs, I noticed a theme in the past few days.

Be yourself.

Cassey Ho of Blogilates posted this on her Instagram.

Bertice Berry wrote this meditation on doing what is right for you, no matter how unpopular.

Media messages regarding “a new year, a new you” to me sound like a harsh break.  Gradual change over time is more sustainable, and is, hello, how the world works, than suddenly, perhaps, trying to eat six cups of kale a day instead of meat.  Or suddenly trying to stop thinking negative thoughts.

Take a breath, take another, and notice–without judgment–what you’re doing.  Notice what you’d like to let go of.  Think hard on how you want to do it.  Then get to it.  Notice when you slip from your goals.  Get up.  Keep going.  Most things become less difficult with time.  I saw this quote on my quote-of-the-day calendar from 2011 that I turn every time I go home: The drops of rain make a hole in the stone, not by violence, but by oft falling (Lucretius).

The baked goods below were part of my ApocalypseChristmas cookie lineup for 2012, a not-too-sweet breakfast/dessert enriched with pine nut flour.  You may substitute whatever nut or seed flour you have handy; I think hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, or almond meal would work well.  Not-too-sweet cookies work for me for dessert and breakfast; my uncle enjoyed them for breakfast and pronounced them “like vegan French toast.”

Apocalyptic Pignoli Waffles | Gothic Granola

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Cookie Recycling and Transformation

For the last two years, I’ve ended Christmas with a pile and a half of cookies in January of which I’m bored by Marilyn Manson’s birthday (5 January).  

There are, of course, worse problems to have.

I read this op-ed today in the New York Times where a Catholic priest gives his view of the world. “One true thing is this: Faith is lived in family and community, and God is experienced in family and community,” Father Kevin O’Neil writes. We live in this earthly plane.  We regularly experience reality as earthly beings.  “I really do believe God enters the world through us,” Father O’Neil said, and “[w]e need one another to be God’s presence.”

How do we show love to one another?  How do we show kindness to ourselves, our loved ones, our friends, our enemies, and our environment?

There is no one right answer to this question.  It’s up to you to ask yourself and listen hard to the still voice in your heart.  That voice has the courage to speak up, and you have the courage to act.  Ask, and it shall be given.  Ask your higher power, set an intention, and create it.

Let’s transform some cookies.

Pizzelle Cupcakes

Cookie Destruction Cake

Cookie Pie (tofu mousse plus nuked and smushed damp cookies)

Procedure for cookie pie crust:
Defrost cookies, if frozen, in refrigerator overnight.  In a large bowl, microwave cookies and a few tablespoons of water.  Crumble with your hands and pat into a pie plate.  Par bake for ten minutes if it seems very wet before filling with chocolate tofu mousse or other pie filling.

Coconut Cream Pie with Cookie Crust

and this vice cream-cookie-random baked goods concoction.

The vice cream concoction was designed to knock out almost two pints of vice cream, frozen treats which I found to be not worth the calories or cents as I continually revise my diet (diet = pattern of eating, not reducing diet).

I found Almond Dream too sweet for my liking (12 grams of sugar per serving for vanilla, and 18 g in the chocolate), kind of like Whole Soy soyoghurt with its high amounts of sugar per serving.  The store-bought stuff is good in a pinch, but when you have the choice, make your own or find some other cooling dessert (perhaps some homemade moussecheezecake?).

Vice Cream Vicissitudes

about 2 pints non-dairy ice cream
A quarter to a half of each type of dessert odds and ends (a few gingersnaps cookies, a few thirds of burned bread loaves, end slices of bread, AMC cookies, focaccia bits, burned berry cobbler/failed tea cake), defrosted if frozen

Have an 8*8 glass dish with a lid nearby.  Microwave the vice cream for 30-45 seconds or until soft.  In a large bowl, mush together the softer baked goods with your hands.  Scrape the vice cream into the bowl and mix well (with your hands or a spatula, your choice…using your fingers [instead of words] is very grounding as your hands become cold and mundane pain brings you back to earth).  Pat the mixture into the pan.  Sprinkle crumbled crunchy baked goods on top (I used gingersnaps).  Cover and freeze.  Take out of the fridge twenty minutes before serving if you like it softer.

This cookie mess tastes like vice cream and will be my go-to to-go dessert when I travel with supper. I made it when I was angry, but creating something more grand from the destruction of imperfect, unwanted things cooled me down and yielded a cooling treat.  

When life gives you lemons…you still get out of bed as best you can, put on your Docs, and make lemon squares.  As a community, leftovers can create a feast.

Speaking of change, I updated the spaghetti casserole post.  I made a butternut squash version.  My cousin Mike (@truthtea on Instagram) liked how spicy it was and asked to take some home—score!
Come to the Dark Side…we have vegan and gluten-free goodies.

Dolmades en Domu

dolmades | vegan gluten-free | gothic granola

I am American: my heritage is 5/8 Italian, 2/8 Finnish, and 1/8 Armenian.  One year, when visiting my dad’s side of the family as we do every New Year’s, we were introduced to dolmades at a Mediterranean restaurant called The Black Olive (since closed) in Tewksbury, MA. 
Dolmades consist of blanched grape leaves filled with rice and sometimes meat or nuts and raisins (trail mix?) which are then steamed to tenderness.  Last year, I made sushi for Christmas. This year, I made dolmades with the help of my mom and grandmother.  My grandfather took all the photographs of the assembly.

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Dark Cookies, Light Hearts


A cool, dark, yin-tastic mint cookie complements a cup of ginger tea while surviving the Virginia DMV and driving late on Solstice.  Interstate 70 East makes for a lovely late night drive because of its relative emptiness, with the lights of Baltimore polluting the sky to the east.  Spending Solstice with friends–and making new friends–truly welcomes the light to the world and helps me commit to allowing more light into my life.  Light, grace, positive energy–whatever you call it–is always available to us.  We work on letting go of all that we do and think that blocks its presence in our lives.

melty mints vegan gluten-free | gothic granola
I modified the melty mints to make them a more balanced, stable cookie with dates and coconut sugar. Sure, they could probably replace a cup of coffee with the caffeine from the cocoa and chocolate, but they’re rich enough to satisfy with just one cookie.

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Tribute to Aunt Mary Crea

On Friday, when I left the house, I had Dropkick Murphys “Rose Tattoo” stuck in my head, and I considered, would I get memorial tattoos when my close family members die? I’d keep them skin deep. No, I laughed in the pale blue dawn as I walked to the Metro, I’d keep them six layers of skin deep, deep six them, keep them six feet under.

The ridiculous number of views on the aforementioned music video? I’m partly responsible; I’ve been looping it as a playlist of one for most of yesterday and today. Last night, I called my grandparents to chat, and my grandmother informed me that my Great-Aunt Mary Crea died on Wednesday at age 87.

Aunt Mary Crea Tribute Cookies date peanut butter | vegan gluten-free | gothic granola Read more →

Undead Gingerbread

Skulls and tombstones.  Would you really expect anything else from a taphophile?
undead gingerbread | gothic granola
Thanks to my aunt and uncle, I now bake in true undead style with the Lilli Vanilli in ‘A Zombie Ate my Cupcake!’ book and cake decorating kit.

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