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Today I played around with a raw sweetener called Yacon syrup. For those looking for a vegan sweetener that is raw, this might be a wonderful alternative to stock in the pantry. It has a very nice caramel taste and is about half as sweet as honey or maple syrup. To me raw yacon syrup is the perfect substitute for molasses. It certainly has the same thick and stringy viscosity.
Sweeteners are always a topic of controversy. Honey, which can be purchased “raw”, is not vegan, and maple syrup, though vegan, is not raw. I could go on and on but you get the point. I am not here to debate which sweetener is better than the other or whether or not you should consume them. You know your own health better than anyone else so you will need to make those determinations for yourself.
I like to mix different sweeteners together for several reasons. By layering multiple sweeteners I can sometimes reduce the overall glycemic load, as well as create layers of flavor and sweetness.
For this recipe I leaned heavily on the bananas to add a whole food sweetness to the cookie. The key is to use ripe bananas. Not only are they easier to digest, ripe bananas are higher in sugars. The raisins were also added to add a little sweetness but more for their chewy texture. To keep the sugar levels down, you can add stevia, which bumps up the sweet level without adding more sugars or calories. In raw recipes you always need to take your health needs in account, the texture that you want from a recipe and the overall flavor.
Update: I first published this recipe on Dec. 1st, 2010.
Yields 15 (1/4 cup) cookies
One of the greatest joys when creating raw food recipes is experimenting with different ingredients… a practice that I highly encourage. Daily I get questions regarding substitutions. Of course we all might have different dietary needs and tastes which could necessitate altering a recipe. I love to share with you what I create for myself, my husband, friends and family. I spend a lot of time selecting the right ingredients with a particular goal in mind, looking to build a certain flavor and texture.
So as you experiment with substitutions, remember they are what they sound like, they are substitutes for the preferred item. Generally they are not going to behave, taste, or have the same texture as the suggested ingredient. Some may work, and others may not and I can’t promise what the results will be unless I’ve tried them myself. So have fun, don’t be afraid, and remember, substituting is how I discovered many of my unique dishes.
Ready for the dehydrator. Because they are “wet” and sticky,
I started them off on a non-stick sheet.
About 4 hours later, I transferred them to the mesh sheet to
help speed up the dry time.
As you can see, they are darkening a bit while they dry. Gives
them that “cooked” appearance.
I made some with and without banana chips on top.
One last bite…
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