I am a big advocate of cake for breakfast. I know that we're all supposed to eat a substantial but nutritionally-balanced meal in the morning to keep us happy until lunchtime but it just doesn't work for me. Mainly, in truth, because I am too lazy to get out of bed any earlier than I already do and I have already streamlined my morning routine as much as humanly possible. I also don't really like eating that much in the morning and most of the 'normal' breakfast foods (toast, cereal, etc) are distinctly unappealing especially when my stomach is still half-asleep.
But cake? That's something I can get on board with.
Except, I'm beginning to find that it's not really working for me. I'm trying not to see this as yet another sign that I'm halfway to the old people's home. Within half an hour of getting to work, I'm already starving and the swooping highs and lows of eating so much sugar first thing in the morning do not make me a happy bunny.
There is also the slight issue of some of the numbers that appear when I hop on the scales these days and consuming half my daily calorie allowance before I've even got out the door in the morning is probably not helping that much.
Not wanting to give up completely my sweet treats in the morning, I turned my attention to coming up with something that I would enjoy but that was just a little bit more healthy than my body is used to.
I decided to use a base of whole wheat flour and oats to provide a satisfying carb hit. Carbs = happiness. Then I channelled my inner-Gwyneth Paltrow and used light agave nectar rather than sugar. According to Gwyneth, agave nectar isn't just low on the glycemic index (thereby avoiding the dreaded swoops in blood sugar) but "super low". How could I go wrong? To finish them off some raisins (look, fruit!) and dark chocolate chips.
These cookies don't just work as early-morning nourishment, oh no. They make a great mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack or whenever you feel the need for a treat but want something at least a little virtuous. I take a couple to work with me every day and grab one whenever I get the urge to run to the vending machine. My boyfriend likes a couple in the evening with his cup of tea. They are soft and chewy little bundles of yummy goodness.
Whole what oatmeal, raisin and chocolate chip cookies (makes approx 30)
110ml light agave nectar
175g whole wheat flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
0.5 tsp salt
100g chocolate chips
1. Preheat the oven to 170C/325F. Line a baking tray with non-stick paper.
2. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and agave nectar until light, fluffy and smooth. It won't look quite like it does when you beat butter and sugar together but it won't be that dissimilar.
3. Work in the flour, baking powder and salt with a wooden spoon until you have something approaching a stiff dough. At the last minute, throw in the rest of your ingredients and stir to combine.
4. Use a spoon/your hands to create little balls of dough, gently flatten and place on the baking tray (the cookies don't spread much during baking so don't worry too much about leaving room for them).
5. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown. Leave to cool on the tray for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.