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Chocolate Chip Rosemary Sea Salt Cookies

It's fall and I love to bake. I don't believe that eating well means we need to deprive ourselves but rather strive to make our food the best quality we can. Adding LOTS of herbs is a great way to incorporate the healing benefits of herbs into foods you are already eating. This recipe add the unexpected savory and herbaceous flavor of rosemary to a classic treat.

Rosemary-Rosemary is a herb you probably already have in your kitchen spice rack or pantry! Many people don't know that it is a powerful healing herb for the mind and emotions. It has a long history of use to help depression and is renowned as a memory aid. It increases circulation and can help with low blood pressure. One the most exciting areas of research is in its' effects on immunity-from everything from allergies to cancer. Adding more rosemary to your diet is a good thing! I purchase organic rosemary in bulk from here and refill my jars.

Chocolate- This is my favorite mind-altering drug! "Chocolate" is the processed product of cacao.
Cacao, Theobroma cacao, literally means food of the gods! And you will feel like one when you eat real cacao (or the chocolate chip with the highest percentage of cacao; I used 72%). Because it contains the mind altering alkaloid, theobromine, the neurotransmitters, phenylethylamine (PEA) and anandamide.

Theobromine is similar to caffeine but with different brain activating properties-more creativity and elevated mood are experienced. Theobromine is a phosphodiesterase (PDE) inhibitor that increases cyclic adenosine monophosphate (CAMP). CAMP activates many brain processes including the making of Brain derived neurotrophic factor(BDNF). BDNF supports neuronal functions of learning and memory.

PEA is a neurotransmitter that is released by neurons at the moment of emotional euphoria, including feelings of love. That may be one of the reasons chocolate is so wonderful!

Anandamide is another neurotransmitter that is naturally produced in the brain and causes pleasant feelings of relaxation, happiness and bliss.

Chocolate Chip Rosemary Sea Salt Cookies

2 1/2 cup gluten free flours (I used 1 cup almond meal and 1.5 cup Krusteaz GF Baking Mix)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
2 tbsp finely chopped dried rosemary
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup honey, maple syrup or other sweetener
1 egg
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup dark chocolate chip
approx 1 tbsp course or flaked sea salt for the top

Preheat the oven to 350*F. Line baking sheet with silicon mat or parchment paper.
Mix dry ingredients including rosemary in a medium bowl.
In a separate bowl, mix olive oil, honey, egg and vanilla.
Add wet ingredients to the dry and mix well.
Gently, fold in the chocolate chips.
Shape small balls with your hands and place on cookie sheet about 2" apart.
Gently flatten and sprinkle with flaked or coarse sea salt.
Bake for 12-14min or until lightly golden.
Remove and let cool for a few minutes (if you can!).

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