Today I’m sharing a really special conversation with you. If your life feels overwhelming and you feel stuck in a rut, this talk will help. Erica Williams is one of the most inspirational people I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. I thought we were going to talk about food, but I was so glad we didn’t. You’ll see why when you watch our talk. It’s a long one, but it is SO worth the watch.
This is the only talk I’ve had for the blog where I’ve legit cried. I’m not a crier, but Erica’s words and story, and most of all, her amazing presence was enough to make me tear up on several occasions. Erica is a gift to the world, and this talk is straight up salve for the soul.
Here’s a note from Erica before you watch our chat:
Hello! I’m Erica and I’ve been a CFDG Meal Plan subscriber and member of the community since January 2018.
I love to run, knit, and travel! Eating plants has been the best fuel for these adventures, and I’ll be the first to admit that sometimes what’s best for us isn’t always the easiest to stick with. I like to say I’m an enthusiastic but imperfect dirty girl! After a phenomenal 2019 packed with a wedding, lots of running (I ran 2,019 miles and PR’ed – a personal record – every distance from 5K to 100 miles) and so much excitement, the start of 2020 knocked the wind out of my sails.
I spent the first half of the year hunkered down and looking for comfort in the old familiar rhythms of a sedentary life. I credit Lyndsey’s radiant smile for waking me up! And I’m so excited to be getting back to the joys of an active and plant-based life! But I’m also learning how to show myself some grace!
PS: My absolute favorite Dirty Meal Plan was #Bowls from 02/28/2020! I could eat that Meal Plan for the rest of my life. Olives and raisins, say what?!
Closed Captioning available.
“Quitting drinking gave me the courage to create a life that I didn’t want to escape from”
Erica, you radiate love, strength, and confidence, and your smile lights up the world. Thank you for talking with me. Thank you for sharing your story. I am humbled and inspired.
Here are links to some of the things we talked about in our chat:
- My Morning Jacket (band)
- Girls on the Run (nonprofit for girls empowerment)
- Midnight Gospel (Netflix show)
- Untethered Soul by Michael Singer (book)
- Erica’s Instagram
- Our private Facebook Group
- Lighten Up
- Plant Fueled Meal Plans
Whole Food Plant Based Chocolate Chip Cookies
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes 12 cookies
- 1 cup almond flour (100 g)
- 1 cup rolled oats (100 g)
- ½ cup nut or seed butter (like peanut or sunflower) (125 g)
- ½ cup date sugar (60 g)
- ½ cup raisins (75 g)
- ¼ cup ground flax seeds (may also be called flaxseed meal) (25 g)
- ½ cup unsweetened non-dairy milk
- ½ cup vegan dark chocolate chips (90 g)
- ½ cup pecans, chopped (55 g)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Place the almond flour, rolled oats, nut or seed butter, date sugar, raisins, and ground flax seeds into a high powered blender or food processor and process until it looks like powder and there are no chunks of raisins or big oat pieces.
Transfer to a mixing bowl and then add the non-dairy milk, chocolate chips, pecans, vanilla, and salt. Mix until everything is combined and the dough forms a sticky ball.
Using a quarter cup measuring cup, scoop up some batter and roll into a ball with your hands. Place the ball onto the baking sheet and repeat so that you have 12 cookie balls, spaced about an inch apart. If you want to get really precise, each ball should weigh about 50-55 grams. Just make sure you have 12 cookie balls, about the same size.
Use the bottom of a glass to press each cookie down so that it is no longer a ball. If you wet the bottom of the glass with a little water before you do this the batter won’t stick as much. When all the cookies are flattened out, wet your hands with water and then roll the glass over the cookies so they spread out a bit. The water on your hands will help the batter from sticking to the glass. These cookies don’t get bigger or spread out as they bake, so the size you make them will be the size they are when they come out of the oven. You can roll them out as much as you want, but 2 inches makes for a satisfying cookie bite.
When all your cookies are rolled out, place them in the oven and bake for 20 minutes.
To make these cookies gluten-free, be sure to purchase oats that specify gluten-free processing.