Saturday, March 29, 2014

Dairy-free Chocolate Chunk Cookies

16 days ago (yes, I've been literally counting each day), my dermatologist advised me to go on a dairy-free diet telling me that cow milk is the only dairy product that has been scientifically proved to cause acne and some other skin problems. The doctor's words sounded like a silly joke to me and I started laughing which made the doctor got puzzled. I immediately felt the need to explain the whole situation about my love of/addiction to cheese and other similar dairy products. It took me some time to make up my mind about whether to go on the diet or not. Anyway, when I took all the other factors into consideration I decided to give it a try and here we are now, on the 16th day and I'm all clean, free from all kinds of dairy products. 

Well, I have a couple of weeks more to go and in order to make things much easier to deal with, I've been trying dairy-free recipes and here is one I came up with on my own this morning: Dairy-free chocolate chunk cookies with honey instead of refined sugar.


  • 100 ml vegetable oil
  • 6-7 tablespoons (Langnese forest) honey
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 400-425 grams white whole wheat flour (sifted twice)
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 100-150 grams bittersweet chocolate (chopped roughly)


  1. In a large bowl with an electric hand mixer, cream together the eggs and the honey until well combined. You will see the bubbles when done. 
  2. Add the oil and vanilla extract and beat for 2 minutes.
  3. In another bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and salt. 
  4. Combine the two mixtures and beat until you get a non-sticky firm dough. 
  5. When well combined, add in the chocolate chunks and knead the dough for a few more minutes until all the chocolate is mixed well with the dough. 
  6. Turn out the cookie dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap. Wrap the dough and refrigerate it at least for 1 hour.
  7. Preheat the oven to 175 degrees C. Line a cookie sheet with a piece of parchment paper.
  8. Shape the cookies and place them on the cookie sheet and bake for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. Don't let them get too brown. 
  9. Remove the cookies from the oven and let them cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack.
  10. Once cool, store in an airtight container for up to 3 – 5 days. 

TIPS on baking with honey
  • BBC Food suggests that it is easier to replace one quantity of honey for each one and one quarter quantities of sugar. The ratio should be 4:5. 
  • Honey has quite a strong flavour of its own - be careful substituting it in recipes where it might dominate the overall flavour. Fruit is susceptible to being overwhelmed by the flavour of honey.
  • Lower the oven temperature by 25ºF when substituting honey, to prevent over browning.
  • Honey is hygroscopic, meaning it absorbs moisture. This ability means that cakes should turn out to be more moist when using honey in place of sugar.
  • A cup of honey contains 1/4 cup of water; this means that you should cut down on liquids by the same amount.