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Ginger spice and everything nice.

Virtual Advent Calendar

For my warm up, I must start off

with a song to one of the best women in my life:

my mother.

Happy Birthday, mom!

“Ba da da da da duuuuhhh.

I am your singing telegram…”

*gun shot*

falls to the ground.

(My eternal love to anyone who can name that movie)

If you see my mother around,

tell her Happy Birthday!


Now, the “12 Days of Christmas Cookies”:

Some days, a cookie is in order!

Yesterday, I ended up having a coffee date with one of my favorite guys ever.

Sure, he is only 5 years old…

but there is something about him as a human being (albeit a little one)

that I genuinely love to be around.

And yeah, that’s right, I said we drank coffee together.

Me and a 5 year old.

Is it bad that I feed him coffee?

I mean, I fill up a shot glass, half milk/half coffee

and then proceed to encourage him to

“Take it to the neck.”

I’m thinking when he gets older, these will some of his favorite memories.

(((Now that I think about it, he will be probably be thinking of days like yesterday, “Taking it to the neck,”

when he is passed out on the curb from a long night of drinking at the bar.

Oh God, I should buy him therapy sessions in advance for his 6th birthday.

That or a permanent seat in AA))).

Nah, I’m pretty sure these will be the good years…

Yeah, he’ll be fine, I’m sure.

Right? He’ll be fine.

So we sat and chatted about life

while drinking our coffee and eating our cookies.

He told me that he was embarking upon the age where he should

start thinking about marriage.

Oh good grief, if 5 is the new 30, I’m screwed.

He had a point though.

Time is ticking away from him and it would be irresponsible of him to not

start considering all possibilities at this point in his life.

We ate giant lollipops and drew pictures of dogs licking ice cream cones;

we played “Freeze Dance” and at one point I found myself genuinely enjoying it.

Isn’t it amazing what a cookie can do?

And a little coffee, too…

Soft Ginger Cookies with Orange Glaze Recipe


  • 1 c. hemp milk (or non-dairy milk of choice) + 1 Tb apple cider vinegar (= buttermilk)
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 c. melted coconut oil (or oil of choice)
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1 c. dark molasses
  • 6 Tbs tofu, blended (or egg replacer for 2 eggs)
  • 3 3 /4 c. Gluten Free flour (I used 1/2 Authentic Foods Featherlight Blend + 1/2 Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose)
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves

For the glaze:

  • 2 c. powdered sugar
  • 1 Tb soft Earth Balace
  • 1/4 c. orange juice
  • 2 tsp orange zest
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • dash salt


  1. Combine buttermilk and baking soda in a small bowl; allow to sit.
  2. In a large bowl, combine oil, sugar, molasses and egg replacers and beat until well mixed (about 1 minute).
  3. Add milk mixture and blend well.
  4. Sift dry ingredients and slowly add to wet mixture. Let stand for 15 minutes (it will start to firm up).
  5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  6. Spoon onto oiled cookie sheet. Bake 8-9 minutes until tops spring back. The cookies will be soft so don’t worry.
  7. Frost cookies with glaze while still warm. Allow to cool completely.
  8. Transfer to trays and place in freezer to completely set, if necessary.

Sometimes, all it takes is the perspective of a little kid (and a cookie)

to make your day.

Now, to really blow your socks off,

check out Brooke’s original perspective to the Soft Ginger Cookies

…and drool.

68 Comments Post a comment
  1. Those cookies look SO good! I love anything ginger flavored!

    December 22, 2011
    • Ginger has the special quality doesn’t it? Ginger to you is like Robert Downey Jr. to me. If he is in it, I’m watching it.

      December 22, 2011
  2. Wow! Check out those pictures! Great photos, and excellent food styling Cara!

    December 12, 2011
    • They are no Nise en Scene photos but if *you* are complimenting me, than I will take it!! 🙂 THANK YOU xoxo

      December 12, 2011
  3. Lou #

    Beautiful beautiful beautiful… sounds like the perfect coffee date.

    December 7, 2011
    • I never knew how much I could have in common with a 5 year old. Oh who am I kidding, of course I knew I had at least the maturity level. haha

      December 7, 2011
  4. i love spiced up cookies! and looks like one fun date.. such important problems of life,.. planning ahead for marriage at 5.. phew.
    my dog accidentally licked some light latte the other day from hubbs mug.. yeah hubbs gets so involved in his work . that he dint see a big furry ball come close to his mug and lick twice before he registered the slurrrrpp.. we all stayed up half that night playing with the furball.. he did not want to sleep!

    December 6, 2011
    • haha! Sounds like you had a late night yesterday, Richa! can’t blame the dog for his impeccably good taste in coffee 🙂

      December 7, 2011
  5. Your lunch date sounds like he’s the cutest! Lucky you! I’m glad he’s marriage-minded. That’s a rare find in kindergarteners these days… 😉 And those cookies look delicious, as always!

    December 6, 2011
    • He really is the cutest! He makes me happy 🙂

      December 7, 2011
  6. Sissy #


    Flames at the side of my face! Burning, heaving, burning breaths!

    Let us in! Let us in!
    Let us out! Let us out!

    You know, your little song does NOT make you the favorite!

    December 6, 2011
    • I am so happy to see you stopped by!!! This whole day I kept thinking, This is would be funny if Sherry was involved in this conversation.
      And you are right. This song doesn’t make me the favorite. Just being me does 🙂

      December 6, 2011
  7. Oh eff, Cara! I just noticed that it’s snowing on your blog! *dancing*

    I loved reading about this charming little coffee date of yours. I need to go on a coffee date with a young chap like that. These cookies look so good, too. Ginger is pretty tasty.

    Happy Birthday Cara’s mum!

    December 6, 2011
    • And I almost forgot that you talk with a British accent 🙂
      I can set you up with a handsome 5-6 year old if you’d like. That is, if your boyfriend is okay with it…

      December 6, 2011
  8. These translated beautifully! Nice job! As for Mr. 5 considering marriage, my Mr. 3 has already proposed to me, his music teacher, and his best friend’s Mom. Mr. 5 needs to get on the ball! Lol! =D

    December 6, 2011
    • Yeah I think he wants to marry his sister, is what we concluded yesterday. I told him that he will have to move to a different state where that is legal. He didn’t laugh. I then proceeded to tell him that he will find that funny when he is older 🙂
      Thank you for the cookie compliment–I have a good recipe creator that I learn from…*wink wink*

      December 6, 2011
  9. Your biggest fan! #

    Indiana Jones??? I was so sure it was Beaches – darn!! Thanks to everyone regarding the birthday wishes! 🙂 I’m heading to Germany now to put on my Krampus or Knecht Ruprecht costume – What a perfect day for it! hee! hee!

    December 6, 2011
    • Mother, I am disappointed in you! How about this *CLUE*: “Yes, I killed her. I hated her so much that flames. F-ffl-flames from the side of my face. Breathing. Breaths. Flames.”

      December 6, 2011
      • Your biggest fan! #

        Let’s see, I think I’m CLUEless…1+2+2+1….Are you trying to make me look stupid in front of the guests? he! he! he!:-) Great Cookies btw! Love You!

        December 6, 2011
        • Love you too! Hope you had a wonderful birthday.
          your favorite daughter.

          December 6, 2011
  10. Jan #

    Happy birthday Mom! And viva Tim Curry.

    December 6, 2011
    • Colonel Mustard: How many husbands have you had?
      Mrs. White: Mine or other women’s?
      Colonel Mustard: Yours.
      Mrs. White: Five.
      Colonel Mustard: Five?
      Mrs. White: Yes, just the five. Husbands should be like Kleenex: soft, strong and disposable.

      December 6, 2011
      • Jan #

        Flies are where men are most vulnerable. I love her so.

        December 6, 2011
        • Well played. I must agree–she is my favorite character out of the bunch.

          December 6, 2011
  11. i want to know what movie you’re talking about bc i really feel like i’ve seen it!

    these cookies look so freakin soft! amazingly yum.

    and your date sounds like a charmer 😉

    December 6, 2011
    • I will give you another hint, how about that:
      “And monkey’s brains, though popular in Cantonese cuisine, are not often to be found in Washington D.C.”
      “Is that what we ate?” [makes a retching sound]

      December 6, 2011
  12. Laurel #

    Ooh Cara, my absolute favorite cookie in the whole world with the perfect orange glaze. It’s a good thing for me and my own baking schedule there’s no Bob’s Red Mill or tofu within miles. I suppose that means I’ll have to stick to triple ginger cookies. So sad.
    I love your little man and his wise ways. I once had a six year old pull out a Playboy he’d found under his dad’s bed to show me. I told his mother I didn’t think women really WERE built like that at which point he looked me straight in the eye and said “Oh, yes they are, Laurel.” Emphasis on the ARE and with a definite leer. Six years old! I’m sure you would have had a comeback. I think I’m still in shock. And Cara, Cafe au Lait is de rigeur in France, you’re just channeling your inner Continental. 🙂 Happy Birthday Cara’s mom!!!

    December 6, 2011
    • BAHA!! That story was funny yet disturbing, all rolled into a ball of sugar. I guess that is the age where they start exploring new territories (or at least becoming aware of it). No wonder he lifted my dress up from behind the other day. I had to be real firm and tell him that it is *not* okay to do that to girls. He had the look of fear in his eyes–I think he got the message. I hope so, at least. Great, now he is going to grow up to be a boozing womanizer. Or at least a little perv like Tom Hanks in the beginning of “Splash”, looking up girls’ skirts… ha
      “Channeling my inner Continental”–I like that!! I’m stealing it 🙂

      December 6, 2011
      • Laurel #

        He is NOT going to grow up to be a perv as long as he has strong women in his life to guide him. Like my friend who looked over at her 7 year old in church to find him surreptitiously putting his hand on the little girl’s leg who was sitting near him. He also very firmly, if not gently, was told that was NOT okay without permission. OK Cara, what movie.. “Never without my permission.”

        December 6, 2011
        • Exto Gamat.

          December 6, 2011
          • Laurel #

            The Fifth Element. Bruce Willis leans over for a kiss when Ms. Milo is asleep.

            December 6, 2011
            • Laurel #

              Also, why were you quoting ‘Scrooged’ to your mom? Just being seasonal?

              December 6, 2011
              • Because that is our favorite movie ever and that is all that we do when communicating 🙂

                December 6, 2011
            • Precisely. Exto Gamat.

              December 6, 2011
  13. These soft ginger cookies are calling my name!!! I love LOVE ginger cookies…these are in my queue soon!
    And Happy birthday wishes to your mom 🙂 very sweet post and I loved hearing ab your coffee date!

    December 6, 2011
    • “Nooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrrraaa. Nooooooorrrrrrrrrrraaaaa.” <–coming from my refrigerator.
      How's your new home treating you???

      December 6, 2011
  14. Ohhh such a sweet story, and so gorgeous looking cookies.

    I hope you feel better today?
    And I wish you a happy St. Nikolaus Day (yeah, you don’t party that, I know, but I still find that very sad!)


    December 6, 2011
    • I am feeling much better today, thank you Cara!
      Tell me about St. Nikolaus Day…(I just might wanna celebrate it now) 🙂

      December 6, 2011
      • a bearded guy with a bishop’s mitra is coming to your place reading out, whether you were kind or not and leaving small presents or sweets (that’s the kind version)

        he might also not show up personally but leave sweets stuffed in your shoes instead

        some sort of German Santa Claus, but earlier in December

        December 6, 2011
        • Now I wanna hear the not so kind version 🙂
          HAPPY ST. NIKOLAUS DAY to you, Cara!! (So it’s like Christmas, really, but celebrated early in the month) Were you good this year? Did you get anything in your shoes?

          December 6, 2011
          • The not so kind version is he is showing up with his helper “Krampus or Knecht Ruprecht”, who has a rod to punish you and a big burlap bag to take you with him. Or… yeah, where I live he might also be accompanied by these “kind” helpers:

            This is like a small “first” Christmas in December, mainly for children.

            December 6, 2011
            • Oh good Lord, that sounds frightening!!! You can’t get away with that sort of story in America (although I think it might be a good solution for all the spoiled-rotten kids here who think they can do/say whatever they please). Now that I think about it, I am going to start spreading this story around as to what Santa Claus *really* does to all the bad little boys and girls. I would be good all year round just so those devilish “helpers” wouldn’t pay me a visit to my house–eek!

              December 6, 2011
              • Haha! I met them for the first time when I was in my twenties and one creeped up just right behind me… when I turned around I thought I was about to die.
                But German children are spoiled as well, I think once a year is not enough for them to show up…

                December 6, 2011
                • What do you mean you met one????!!! Where? Do they actually patrol the streets?

                  December 6, 2011
                  • yeah! they do!
                    around the 6th of December they are patroling the streets, making crazy sounds by using their ratchets and scaring the hell out of people… (they really start chasing you, claw at you, and so on… you know, young guys, wearing costumes,….)
                    and that guy thought it was funny to just creep up behind me… he couldn’t know it would be my first time to see something like this but I’ll never forget turning around and standing face to face to that monster

                    December 6, 2011
                    • This so is not the Christmas I have known it to be! I guess it’s a bit like a mix between Halloween and Christmas, although I think I would pee my pants if one of those creatures was standing behind me. HAHA! I wanna come to Germany during this time now. I have to see it for myself…

                      December 6, 2011
                    • You may only find it in southern Bavaria and Austria all other regions have that kind Nikolaus bringing sweets and stuff and telling children to be kind…

                      sorrily this is in German and they were not allowed to use their rods but you may get an idea what it looks like…

                      and yeah, you are right, this is kind of the same tradition as Halloween

                      December 6, 2011
                    • This will give me nightmares for a while…

                      December 6, 2011
                  • ahhh noooo! it’s a little creepy but I still think it’s funny, don’t have nightmares! I feel bad now 😦

                    December 6, 2011
                    • HAHA. As long as *I’m* not the only encountering these beasts, I will be okay 🙂

                      December 6, 2011
  15. Ha… I love your coffee date guy! He sounds like a little charmer. I’m sure there’s another wonderful kindergartener out there for him somewhere, though women are becoming marriage minded a little later these days.

    I’m back to work for the first time since last Wednesday and I have to tell you that catching up on your blog was one of the only things I do at work that I was looking forward to!

    Also, those cookies look delicious.

    December 6, 2011
    • I am so happy to see your bright and shining face over here!! I was getting worried about you. Glad to hear that you are feeling better, my friend!

      December 6, 2011
      • Thanks!

        And oh man, I got so excited about your coffee date that I forgot to say… happy birthday to your mom!!! Thanks, Cara’s mom, for giving us Cara! Yay!

        December 6, 2011
        • If you start admitting that you give the Emperor coffee, I will be so pleased 🙂
          And yes, happy birthday mom! xo

          December 6, 2011
          • Ha ha ha… oh, he’s had coffee. For his first birthday, I ordered a decaf latte for us to share. But since his birthday is at the end of September and things are starting to get really seasonal then, I got pumpkin spice syrup… and he would. NOT. TOUCH the coffee. I realized later his bubble bath at the time was also pumpkin spice scented so he was probably like what the heck mom, why are you trying to get me to drink soap?!

            That totally turned him off of coffee for a long time but he has had a sip here and there recently. He likes it a little too much.

            December 6, 2011
            • I can see the Emperor turning his nose at Pumpkin Spice. He is more of a Chai kind of guy, in my opinion 🙂 ha.
              Does he drink his coffee with “milk” and sugar???

              December 6, 2011
  16. Babs #

    These cookies look amazing…so many things to try, I can’t wait. I’m jealous I couldn’t be there for coffee time. I miss those afternoons 😦

    December 6, 2011
    • It was a fun coffee time, I must admit. Really made me miss you more, however…

      December 6, 2011
  17. Michele #

    Sounds like you two kids had a lovely day together 🙂 awesome post as always.
    Have a good day dear! Cheers!

    ‘Clue’ happens to be a favorite of mine as well! Anything with Tim Curry I’m always down for.

    December 6, 2011
    • Michele, I now profess my eternal love as promised! Oh “Clue”, how you never disappoint! (And amen to Tim Curry)…

      December 6, 2011
  18. Great photos. I could just eat those right off my screen!

    December 6, 2011
    • Thank you Recipe Adaptor! By eating right off the screen, you save yourself calories 🙂

      December 6, 2011
  19. Your biggest fan! #

    BEACHES!!! Thank you Sweetie for the warm birthday wishes!!! I’ll get back to you again later today. XOXOXO

    December 6, 2011
    • WRONG! The S.S. Minow, James. What was the boat that told them all to Gilligan’s Island? The S.S. Minow…
      Though “Beaches” does have a singing telegram in it, you are incorrect, birthday girl! Another old classic. How about this:
      *slap in the face*
      “Well, someone had to stop her from screaming…”

      December 6, 2011
      • Your biggest fan! #

        That was the boat that *TOOK* them all to Gilligan’s Island.

        December 6, 2011
        • Your biggest fan! #

          Pssst…..I know I still have your eternal love!

          December 6, 2011
        • Everyone knows this one. Oh yeah? Well, does everyone know *this* one?!
          Ahhh, the bitch hit me with a toaster.

          December 6, 2011

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