We all deserve a little treat now and again, right? So, today, I am sharing a recipe from my childhood that I morphed a bit into a gluten free and low FODMAP treat. The recipe of the day: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecakes. Please take a peek!
As a dietitian, I am all about eating healthy most of the time. If the goal of eating healthy is to live a long, healthy and productive life, I do believe a little treat can fit in. I worry sometimes about people that feel guilty about eating a little taste of cake… like it’s evil. I am a bit fearful that nutrition and eating in the US has become somewhat of an obsession….and not at all in a good way. I am happy that Americans are more aware of the relationship of food to health but I am sad that food has become a substance of calories, fats and ‘nutrients’ or chemicals rather than looked at as simply food that we eat to nourish and enjoy. In part, this transition has become a necessity as modern manufacturers don’t always have our back–their goal is pure financial gain and getting an inexpensive manufactured food into the hands and mouths of consumers to make the almighty $$ buck. But the fallout of food obsession can have dire consequences —food becomes feared and obsessed over and along with it a new form of eating disorder called orthorexia nervosa is emerging. Learn more about orthorexia nervosa here.
Don’t get me wrong, I think being an informed consumer is a good thing. I think eating real foods grown in nature is a great goal. I hope that the food manufacturing world will be more transparent and that consumer’s will know exactly what we are eating when we buy packaged foods. I realize that many of my clients can’t eat anything they want because they have a sensitive intestine. I am hopeful that we all listen to our bodies and when a food or drink creates pain or digestive woes that we listen and minimize the offending item. But eating something simply because it has minimal calories or is full of green vegetables but you hate the taste and get very little enjoyment from consuming it…to me, misses the big picture. Food should be nourishing but also enjoyed right? Too much of a “good” thing–be it water or spinach–can cause harm. Jamming 2 bags of spinach into a green drink can up the phytates and oxalates to levels that minimize mineral absorption and increase risk of kidney stones in susceptible individuals. More isn’t always better.
I am not one to rant about my beliefs, though my husband may beg to differ with me! Ha! But just wanted to say, I think we need to be a bit more gentle on ourselves with our many “food rules”. It can be exhausting and stressful to worry about every bite. I do understand how scary eating can become when every bite seems to trouble your tummy. And I am hopeful that this area of digestive health will continue to blossom and help us all connect the dots. Just be mindful that trying to be perfect or ‘clean’ with your diet every single day might just be asking yourself to do the impossible. And from a ‘big picture’ health vantage point, this attempt to be perfect rather than eating healthy the majority of the time, probably won’t add years to your life….but rather less life to your years.
Okay…on a lighter note…let’s eat cake!
This recipe is partially homemade and partially made with some semi-prepared ingredients…making it super easy to whip up. It’s also very adaptable. I made my cheesecakes in my 3 inch torte pans, but these can be made in muffin tins w/ paper liners for easy removal.
- 8 ounces of Farmer cheese (I use Friendship brand which has 0 grams of lactose)
- 2 large eggs
- 1/4 cup vanilla infused sugar (OR sub in 1/4 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla)
- 1 tablespoon brown rice flour
- 1 package refrigerated gluten free chocolate chip cookie dough (I use, Immaculate GF chocolate chunk cookies)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Prepare 12 muffin tins by lining w/ paper liners or lightly oil 6, 5 inch tart tins
- Press 1 cookie dough 'glob' about 1 tablespoon into muffin tin or 2 'globs' or 2 tablespoon into tart pan, press lightly to form a crust.
- In medium bowl, mix farmer cheese,eggs, vanilla sugar (or sugar and vanilla extract) and brown rice flour until creamy.
- Top 'crust' with about 1-2 tablespoon of cheese mixture--should leave a bit of outer crust showing.
- Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes. Cheese mixture should be firm and cookies lightly browned on sides and cake tester comes out clean.