Like I've mentioned before, I love perusing the strange gourmet food section at TJ Max and Marshall's. Sometimes I'll bring home dinner: colorful noodles, exotic mushroom marinara (doesn't checking for sugar go without saying at this point?), olives, pickled asparagus, tea, nut mix, bruschetta, olive oil, etc. Sometimes my purchase will include breakfast, as well: German whole rye bread, maple syrup, raw honey, etc. If you have not checked out this hidden gem, give it a try. It's fun to have black squid-ink noodles and exotic marinara on hand when a friend stops over for lunch.
The other day I found boxes of
at TJ Max. Always on the prowl for a naturally sweetened goody, I picked this up, scanned the ingredients,
and threw the box in my basket. Who cares that they are little "teething" cookies meant for toddlers, whatever that means. They looked simple and tasteful with the oat flour and molasses. The bright red sticker with "$1.50" really did me in. A box of naturally sweetened cookies for one dollar and 50 cents? Deal!
The next morning I stumbled out of bed, woken by the bright sun shining in my room before the 7 o'clock hour. Jeff and I take turns taking Annie-the-mutt down the 6 floors and outside every morning. It was his turn. I walked groggily to the kitchen, filled my teapot with water and swiftly prepared course coffee grounds for my french press. When the coffee was ready, I examined my pantry for something sweet to dip with. I'm a dip-a-holic, by the way. I love to dip toast, cookies, biscuits, bread or anything hard and chewy that might contrast the bitterness of coffee.
Side note: (I am not using coconut milk anymore to sweeten my coffee (I use organic whipping cream). I got sick of it really fast, even though it was delicious at first. However, coconut milk is still fantabulous for making chocolate "milk".)
I noticed my unopened box of maple "teether" biscuits sitting to the side in my pantry. Perfect, I thought. I settled in on my couch, wrapped warmly in my robe, holding my hot cup of joe and armed with two biscuits. I was obviously going to love these puppies.
Well, uh, that didn't exactly happen. For those of you who have kids, perhaps the descriptive word, "teethers" means something to you. I didn't notice the word at all when I bought the box. I was focused on the fact that they were cheap and naturally sweetened.
Well, "teethers" means very hard and dense. They are biscuits meant for toddlers to suck on while they are teething. Or for dogs. I dipped one end of the biscuit into my coffee and expected a nice, soggy bite. Instead, I had to use my molars to break off a piece into my mouth. For the next bite, I soaked the biscuit much longer in my steaming coffee but to no avail. I'm convinced this biscuit is nothing other than a dog biscuit safe for human consumption.
However, it was very tasty and the scent and taste of molasses lingered for a while after the first bite. It ended up being a great compliment to my bitter coffee.
Creamy Not-ella Carob Butter
1 day ago