Beat & Bettrave’s Mega Chocolate Chunk Cookies
On a quiet country road hidden between somewhere and nowhere lies a a little café with a lot of soul. Beat and Bettrave, located in the charming little town of Frelighsberg, Quebec, is the brainchild of husband and wife duo Eloïse Comtois-Mainville and Ludovic Bastien. Up and running since June 2015, the couple has merged their love of gardening and music to create a casual dining eatery that celebrates what the small town with the renowned farming community has to offer.
With a garden that epitomizes what it means to eat local, ninety-five percent of Beat & Betterave’s produce is picked straight from their backyard. “I can’t remember what I picked today so you’ll have to go find the recipe in the garden,” was co-owner Eloise’s very fitting reply to my request for the salad recipe I ate for lunch.
I did just that, and was met with sunflower paved grounds, abundant with stalks of fresh dill and rife with fragrant basil.
There are lush varieties of lettuce, summer squash, and tomatoes on the verge of ripeness. A summer bounty that only lasts for a few fleeting months, Eloïse explains how she freezes and preserves root vegetables, aubergines, tomatoes and herbs for the long winter season when her garden transforms into a snow-covered wonderland.
Last January, Eloise and Ludovic set up a microbrewery in the café’s basement to serve their own beer on tap, as well as cider and lemonade. Although the gentleman at the table distanced to my right vouched for the beer, I chose the sparkling lemonade – just thirst-quenching enough for what turned out to be one of the hottest days of summer!
The indoor space welcomes local artists and musicians to perform on a weekly basis, and weather permitting, the outdoor terrace is the perfect vantage point to soak up views of the sprawling vegetable garden.
What I love most about the café – much like the owners themselves – is the laid-back vibe. When I ask Eloïse for her buckwheat cookie recipe (so addictive that I bought the entire contents of the cookie jar for my…ahem…kids), she’s happy to oblige. Much like the rest of the menu, this recipe is flexible and changes from one day to the next depending on what she has in the kitchen (recipe below).
Seems like this charming little town’s go-with-the-flow attitude has become a trend. And one that the city girl in me welcomes with open arms.
Beat & Bettrave’s Mega Chocolate Chunk Buckwheat Cookies – *Makes approximately 5 dozen cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 12 ounces dark chocolate chips or chunks
- 2 cups buckwheat flour
- ¾ cups brown sugar
- 3/4 cups granulated sugar
- 2 & 1/2 cups oats
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking pouder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 & 1/2 cups sesame seeds, very lightly toasted
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 large eggs
Grind the rolled oats into a powder (you can do this by blitzing in a blender, or placing in a sealed plastic bag and bashing with a rolling pin – the second option helps release frustrations).
Sift together the oats with buckwheat flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
In another bowl, lightly beat together the butter and sugars. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat well to incorporate.
Add he dry ingredients to the butter/sugar/egg mixture in three additions until combined (do not overmix).
Fold in the chocolate and sesame seeds.
Divide the mixture into twelve, and shape into logs. Cut each log in 12 and place on a parchment line baking sheet (tip – the cookies will expand, keep at least 2 inches between each cookie).
Bake in an oven preheated to 350 degrees for ten minutes or until lighly browned and cooked through.
Photos by Valeria Bismar
Cover photo by Lidija’s Kitchen
Shot on location at Beat & Bettrave