Last week I spent a few days in Des Moines, Iowa learning more about soy beans than I can possibly fit in one blog. Now, before you say "Well thank heavens for little-tiny favors!" just hear me out. I learned some really interesting stuff, and once I have sifted through my notes and photos I look forward to sharing some of the niftier points.

Right now I am very excited to pass on a great baking tip given to me courtesy of Linda Funk, Executive Director of the Soyfoods Council. This is so cool:

Linda likes to add Textured Soy Protein to cookies for a great crunch and a hint of caramel flavor without adding extra fat.   The addition of TSP also boosts protein content. But that's almost beside the point, because the added flavor and texture alone makes the addition of TSP worthwhile. I experimented at home with two recipes: a traditional chocolate chip cookie recipe (to which I added 1/2 cup of TSP) and a low-fat oatmeal cookie (pictured, in which I replaced 50% of the oatmeal with TSP).

Both cookies were fantastic!  The TSP did indeed add a lovely crunch.   The bottom of the cookies, where the TSP had direct contact with the pan, had caramelized, lacing the cookies with a rich, buttery flavor.  No one would guess that the secret ingredient was soy.  If you are interested in trying this tasty trick, check your local grocery or health food store for TSP.