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Christian Vegetarian Association Presents:
Take Heart!

Beach Cookies
(http://www.chefchloe.com/blog.html)

Serves about 20 bars

Ingredients:

1/2 cup vegan margarine (I use Earth Balance soy-free non-hydrogenated Buttery Spread)

2 cups graham cracker crumbs (I buy Health Valley Graham Crackers and pulse them into fine crumbs in the food processor. Feel free to do this with any vegan graham cracker or wafer cookie.)

1 cup canned coconut milk

1/4 cup agave or maple syrup

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon sea salt

2 tablespoons arrowroot

1 1/2 cups shredded sweetened coconut

1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted (optional)

2 cups non-dairy chocolate chips

Preparation:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Melt margarine in microwave or over stove and pour into a 9x13" baking pan. Swirl around until the bottom of the pan is completely coated.

3. Sprinkle graham cracker crumbs evenly into pan until bottom of the pan is completely coated in crumbs. Pat down lightly with your hands.

4. In a small bowl, whisk together coconut milk, agave, vanilla, salt, and arrowroot. Drizzle this mixture evenly over the graham cracker layer.

5. Sprinkle the shredded coconut into the pan, then layer the optional nuts, then the chocolate chips. With the palm of your hand, gently pat the top of the cookie pan so that the chocolate chips get cemented into the rest of the cookie.

6. Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until center looks thick and slightly bubbly with very lightly browned edges.

7. Let cool then refrigerate for a couple hours or overnight. Cut into even bars. The textures and flavors of this cookie really work best after refrigeration, but if you're like my mom and gotta dig in right away- be my guest!

8. If you're feeling festive, platter the cookies on a tray or dish of organic brown sugar (mock sand) and stick some cocktail umbrellas in the sugar for a "beach scene". 

Your question and comments are welcome

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