Creative Cookies, Part 3

When is a cookie not a cookie? When it's a bar!*
Most people know about making pie crusts and bar bases using graham cracker crumbs, but did you know you can dry and crumble regular cookies too? If you have some cookies that are getting stale, just break them up and leave out on a tray to dry out for a couple days. Then, just pulse in a food processor to make fine crumbs. We do this sometimes to make our cheesecake crusts.
If you want to make your brownies more interesting, crumble up some cookies and mix into the batter!
For a gluten-free, dairy-free take on a classic Canadian bar, here is a recipe for Nanaimo Bars by Vancouver based company Daiya. If you can eat dairy, follow the official recipe of the legendary Nanaimo Bar on the City of Nanaimo's website. Just substitute our Almond Fudge Cookie crumbles for the graham crackers, or use gluten-free graham crumbs.

Dairy-Free Nanaimo Bars


3 tbsp ground chia
3 tbsp water
6 oz semi-sweet Chocolate
3/4 cup + 1 tbsp vegan buttery spread of choice (like Earth Balance)
1 tsp natural vanilla extract
2 cups gluten-free cookie crumbs (I recommend our Almond Fudge Cookies)
1 cup flaked coconut
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2 tbsp gluten-free custard powder, or vanilla pudding powder (like Dr Oetker's Shirriff brand)
3 tbsp dairy-free milk of choice
2 cups gluten-free icing sugar, like Rogers
1 tub Daiya Plain Cream Cheese Style Spread


Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine ground chia and water in a small bowl and set aside to thickenMelt 2 oz of chocolate and 1/2 cup vegan buttery spread in a bain marie until chocolate is melted. Blend in vanilla and chia mixture. Stir in gluten-free graham crumbs, coconut flakes and nuts. Press onto bottom of a 9 inch square pan. Bake for 8 minutes, then allow to cool completely. Mix custard powder with dairy-free milk in a medium bowl until blended. Add 1/4 cup of remaining vegan buttery spread and Daiya Plain Cream Cheeze, mix well. Gradually beat in icing sugar until blended. Spread onto crust. Refrigerate for 15 mins.Melt remaining chocolate and vegan buttery spread until fully melted and combined. Spread over custard layer. Refrigerate for 4 hours or until chilled before cutting into bars.

*When is a door not a door? When it's ajar! My husband told me I should reference the original hilarious joke.

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