Recipe Review: Candice Kumai’s Matcha Chocolate Chip Banana Cookies
Candice Kumai, the golden girl of wellness, and author of 'Cook Yourself Sexy' and 'Cook Yourself Thin' has a way with words. She can get ideas stuck in your head, inspirational tales that will inevitably lead you to edible euphoria. I discovered her obsessing over these matcha cookies on The Skinny Confidential Podcast, and immediately rushed home to make them. Chewy oats and chocolate chunks infused with whole green tea leaves that held the promise of making me feel sexy and thin - Oh, and you can make them gluten-free?? Yes please!
I’m not gluten-free but my husband is and I want him to eat my cookies.
Now let me just preface this by saying I love to cook, but I am NOT a baker.
I’m not into measuring, using exact ingredients, or following directions in general.
But for Candice, I made an exception. Sort of.
The recipe calls for all-purpose flour, but she said gluten-free flour is okay, so I went with coconut flour because it’s high in fiber and protein.
I also substituted maple syrup for the brown sugar. I just think maple syrup is more natural. And I was out of brown sugar.
Finally, I decided not to use the egg. She said I could replace it with water. So easy!
I started off feeling pretty good.
Pretty pretty good.
Watch the video to see where I went wrong.
Makes: 2 dozen cookies
Ready In: 20 minutes
3/4 cup all-purpose flour (g-free works a-okay!)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons matcha powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature (try coconut oil, too!)
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg (optional)
1 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
1 large ripe banana, mashed (about 1/2 cup)
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup dark chocolate chips
Water as needed
Heat the oven to 350* F
Whisk the flour, baking soda, matcha powder, and salt together in a medium bowl and set aside.
In a large bowl, cream the butter and brown sugar together on medium speed until creamy, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes.
Add the egg and vanilla and beat to combine, using a rubber spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl as necessary. Mix in the mashed banana and 1/4 cup of water, beating until incorporated.
Add the dry ingredients and beat on low speed until they're just combined. Add the oats and the chocolate chips, mix briefly, and use a rubber spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl if needed.
Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and coat lightly with nonstick cooking spray. Use a tablespoon to scoop out 1 1/2 - inch dough balls, placing them about 1 inch apart on the baking sheet.
Bake until just golden on top, about 10 minutes. Cool on the sheet for 10 minutes before transferring the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
Candice Kumai definitely knows her way around an East-Meets-West cosmopolitan kitchen. But for me, there's a curve.
What I learned...
Coconut flour is the worst. For this recipe anyway. It's obscenely thirsty. After adding the wet ingredients, the dough was still more like a fluffy powder. I had to add a TON of water to get it to stick together. I'm using the word 'stick' loosely. And water is tasteless, so it did nothing to enhance the flavor.
Matcha is intense. Use with caution.
Make sure the chocolate chips you use are sweet and not too bitter.
I also now know that you need to use room temp butter or oil. I used a cold stick of butter. As you'll see in the vid, just don't do it.
Final thoughts... The cookies had a nice flavor, but were way too dry. If I ever make them again I will use a multi-purpose (gf) flour, and probably add the egg.