Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Truffles

One night when I was sixteen, I watched Marvin Hamlisch (composer of A Chorus Line, etc.) on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.  The previous guest was Adrienne Barbeau, the buxom actress who played Bea Arthur’s daughter on the sitcom Maude. I was appalled as I witnessed Hamlisch, seated on the couch beside her, stammer and fidget (eyes flitting repeatedly toward her massive chest) while more or less grovelling for a date on air. Despite his musical genius, despite his fame and fortune and an upcoming gig at the Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, it was painfully apparent that Hamlish reverted to a tongue-tied nerd when faced with a beautiful woman who, clearly, barely registered his existence.

As soon as I got up off the sofa and turned off the television (no remotes in those days), I went to my typewriter and typed a letter to Marvin.  It said:

Dear Marvin Hamlisch,

Someone with your reputation shouldn’t have to lower himself to ask Adrienne Barbeau for a date.  Obviously, she doesn’t appreciate your genius.  If you ever come to Montreal, I would go on a date with you any time. 


(Miss) Ricki Heller

I addressed it to “Marvin Hamlisch, c/o Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, USA” and popped it in the mail.

The following week, I received a handwritten letter on Marvin’s personal stationery.  It said:

Dear Ricki,

If I ever get to Montreal, you’re on.


Marvin Hamlisch

Sometimes I think back on that letter and ask myself, “Wow, did I ever really have such audacity? Where did that starry-eyed insouciance go?  And why didn’t Marvin ever call me for that date?”

Then I remember: oh, yeah.  I was sixteen.

Well, dear readers, I’ve decided it’s time to dredge up my inner 16 year-old once again. And you can help!

Even at my advanced age, I’m still a pop culture groupie. I’ve been a fan of Ellen’s for as long as I can remember (almost as long as it’s been since I heard from Marvin).  I love her even more now that she’s vegan and sugar-free–and I want to be on The Ellen Degeneres Show so I can bring her some amazing baked goods from my cookbook, Sweet Freedom!


[Elsie’s definitely on board! (or is that a little board on Elsie?)]

Am I a little bit crazy?  You betcha!

As someone who’s followed a whole foods diet for over decade, I know first hand how much a healthy diet can affect your well-being (just look at the impact of the ACD on me over this past year!).  Based on the cookbook’s reviews and all your fabulous feedback (thank you! thank you! My blog readers are the best!), I’m confident others will agree that treats from the book are both healthy AND delicious.  What better venue to spread the word than The Ellen Show, especially since the show’s star herself has adopted–and now promotes–this same way of eating?

[“Here, Mum, you’ll need this to dance on the show.”]

Besides, I’d be a perfect guest for the show! We have so much in common, Ellen and I:  She loves dogs; I love dogs. She eats a vegan diet; I eat a vegan diet.  She’s sworn off sugar; I’ve sworn off sugar.  She loves American Idol; I love American Idol. She’s gay; I’m—


She loves dogs; I love dogs!

On April 2, 2010, I tweeted for an entire day nonstop, with every single tweet that day directed to @TheEllenShow–with NO laptop, NO BlackBerry, NO pre-scheduled tweets–just me sitting at my desktop computer, typing away (with the occasional bathroom break)!  The major blitz is over, but I’d like to keep the campaign going!

[“Mum, I know you named me Elsie, but I think I’d like to be called Ellen from now on.”]

Together, we can make this happen! If you like my recipes and want to see me serve delicious, vegan and sugar free treats on The Ellen Show, please feel free to tweet Ellen at @TheEllenShow, or send an email in support by clicking here. You can also post a link to this page on your blog, Stumble this blog entry (just click on “I like this” at the top of the page if you see this on StumbleUpon), tell your local librarian, get a tattoo–whatever works!

And don’t forget to hop back here to leave a comment telling me you did so (so I can send you a free copy of the book if when I get onto the show)! [Update, 2017: So far, no show. 😉 But hey, if you’d still like to put in a good word for me with Ellen, go for it!]

[But where’s Mum?]

If I get invited on the show, every single commenter who participates in this blitz will win a FREE copy of Sweet Freedom, the ebook , which is identical to the paper copy! (And isn’t giving away free goodies very Ellen-like of me?).

And even if I don’t get asked to appear on the show, I’ll still choose 10 names at random on Sunday–three people will win hard copies of the book, and seven will win ebook.  It’s my way of saying “thank you” for all your support!

I think it’s a win-win-win. If Ellen invites me to her show, she’ll have the opportunity to try some amazing, healthy baked goods.  I’ll get to fulfill the dream of a starry-eyed teenager (and, more recently, a starry-eyed menopausal blogger).  And you will get a FREE copy of my cookbook–everybody wins!

Let’s make it happen!  Let’s show the world what “grassroots marketing” really means!  Let’s prove to all the aloof, disinterested corporations that even the little guy (okay, technically I’m not quite “little” yet–but 45 pounds is nothing to sneeze at) can drum up support for an independent project without a huge marketing budget! Let’s help Ellen discover some truly delicious sweets to eat on her sugar cleanse–and share them with the world!  And let’s all go try out one of these raw cookie dough truffles right now! (Well, you’ll need a good source of quick energy for all that typing, I figure). 😉

Just click here to send an email or tweet at @TheEllenShow.

“Mum, that’s a great idea! And we know The Ellen Show would be lucky to have you. But, um, we are your usual kitchen helpers, you know. . . so does that mean we get to be on TV, too?”

Subscribe for recipes and more about living well without sugar, gluten, eggs or dairy! Click here to subscribe to via email. You’ll receive emails sharing recipes and videos as soon as they’re posted, plus weekly updates and news about upcoming events. A healthy lifestyle CAN be sweet!

[Disclaimer: this post may contain affiliate links. If you buy using these links, at no cost to you, I will earn a small commission from the sale.]



  1. Ricki, I’ll be more than happy to RT your tweets today!

  2. Just retweeted and will do so the rest of the day 🙂 Oh, and this recipe looks delicious. I fully plan to try it soon 🙂

  3. Recipe looks great!!

  4. Yummy looking truffles!!!

  5. You deserve this as much as ANY guest on Ellen, and it would so awesome to see a Canadian representing vegan eatin’ on American television! I’d be honoured to write to the show suggesting you as a guest; I’m going to include links to my favourite recipes as well. I refuse to get Twitter though, sorry. 😉

  6. Totally RT-ing your tweets – I love your enthusiasm about this!

  7. I just tweeted for you! 🙂 Good luck – this would be awesome! I would love to be in the audience – if you get to invite any guests, I’ll start a grassroots campaign for myself to go, haha

  8. Tweeted! Hope you get on that show!

  9. Sara Scott says

    what is the email address i can send one to?
    i dont have twitter…

  10. Good luck with your dream! I think it’s a pretty cute one. I re-tweeted for you.

  11. Kelly Michelle says

    Ok well, I don’t understand Twitter at all and quite honestly don’t really care to but I of course sent an email for you, here’s the link for those that want it:

    Now don’t get me wrong I would do this for you anyways but since you are offering cookbooks….. well then I want in! I hope I can have a chance to win even though I don’t “tweet”. I did say lots of nice things about you in the email I sent though 🙂

    • Kelly Michelle,
      Thanks for the link–I’ve added it to the post, too. And OF COURSE you don’t need to tweet to enter the giveaway–this comment is an entry! And you’re guaranteed a copy of the book if I get on the show 😀

  12. Done, Ricki! That letter to Marvin made me laugh out loud! 😀
    Thanks Kelly Michelle! I just sent her a letter through that form.

    I rooting for you, Go Ricki!

  13. Ooh, your truffles look divine!
    You should totally go on Ellen! She would love your goodies!

  14. this is great – like the Ellen campaign to be on the cover of O Magazine. I hope you get invited to her show!

  15. Oh, you’d be so great on Ellen’s show. I wish I had twitter to help you out, but I deleted my account a few months ago in an attempt to restrict my online life.

    I’d love to see you “in person” on TV. And she would totally dig you, I’m sure of it.

  16. Ricki – you may be crazy but so am I, so I’m in! Besides, I never get to see you on those Canadian shows, and I’m looking forward to your appearance on Ellen.

  17. Good luck getting on Ellen!! Those dough balls look SO good.

  18. OMG. These look absolutely astonishingly amazing! I must try them – I think they’d be perfect for my daughter’s 2nd birthday party in a few weeks! Nom.

  19. I am such a huge fan of this idea. I send Ellen a gushy email. Hopefully it does the trick. I wasn’t kidding about that personal assistant thing. I’d be there in a heartbeat.

  20. i sent an email!!! vegan treats fo all

  21. Way to go pursuing your dream, Ricki! I really admire how you’re going about it, not caring (much?) what people might think. I’m sure Ellen would appreciate meeting someone like you – by which I mean specifically you, of course! 🙂
    I’ve retweeted one of your tweets already. I’d really love for you to see your dream come true.

  22. Courtney says

    What a brilliant idea, Ricki! You were MADE to go on Ellen! I don’t have a twitter account, as you know :-), but I am totally e-mailing her in your support!

    Love Marvin Hamlisch. Love Chorus Line. CanNOT believe he actually wrote you back–how cool is that?!


  23. Courtney says

    E-mail to Ellen sent…fingers crossed for you 🙂

  24. I’ve been retweetin ya all day 🙂 good luck!

  25. I RT’d you! Good luck Ricki!

  26. claire b. good says

    Ricki I sent her highness of sillyness an email promoting you all the way! you’re wonderful! and 45 pounds is amazing!!!!!! go girl!

  27. I retweeted one of your tweets on my twitter. I really hope you get on the show, keep us posted!!

  28. I RT’ed. :o) Good luck! I would love to see you on her show.

  29. Your story about Marvin Hamlish made me laugh! I am keeping my fingers crossed that you get on the Ellen show!

  30. I’m keeping my fingers crossed as well! 🙂

  31. Ricki,

    I am still laughing about Marvin and Ellen. You crack me up! I love your modifications. I can’t wait to try your chocolate coating.


  32. Hmm, well I’m not sure if my RT’s got you on Ellen, but how about I try those yummy truffles hmmm?

  33. that is too awesome on receiving a letter back from Hamlisch, Ricki. wow! and i totally think you could and should be on The Ellen show. you two do have a lot in common and i think it would be one awesome way to get the word out there about more vegan (and sugar free) awesomeness. i don’t tweet, but ya better believe that i’m gonna send over an e-mail. fingers crossed! wahooooooooooooo!

  34. You make the most interesting truffles! These are a great idea. I like the addition of cacao nibs. They have such an unusual crunch.

    Good luck with the Ellen. I am Twitter-hopeless but I wish you your heart’s desire!

  35. Yes!! Yes!! I already have your book but I am still sending Ellen an email asking her to have you on her show! And I will link to this post from my next blog post too. YAY! Ricki on Ellen! That would be so awesome! Ellen should totally go for this, this is just like when she was campaigning to be on the cover of “O”! 😀

    By the way, I can’t believe Marvin Hamlisch (genius!) wrote you back! Very cool!

  36. you say crazy like it’s a bad thing. having a dream is an awesomething! and the truffles look amazing.


  37. I would love for you to be on Ellen!

    I also appreciate your:
    a) truffle recipe
    b) appreciation for Marvin

  38. I sent an email to Ellen–so hope you get to be on her show!! Would love to have your book too…

  39. I love that you sent Marvin that letter – and that he responded! Super cool indeed.
    I didn’t know about the Ellen tweeting- is it too late to tweet you? If anyone deserves to be on the show, it’s you!

  40. I think I’m a little too late, but I would LOVE to see you on Ellen. My PVR would be all over it.
    I haven’t let myself become familiar with Twitter but an email I can do.

  41. Love Ellen, love you, love Sweet Freedom – I left Ellen a message to put you on her show. I hope she picks you!!

  42. Hi, Ricki!

    Just dropped some more love in Ellen’s twitter account 🙂 Hope it works – I’d love to see some more veggies on mainstream television. And I love your blog. Thanks and good luck!

  43. Wow I wish I wasn’t so behind on reading blog posts! Sending an email to the Ellen show now!! Hope you make it on. =) I’d love to see you on there!

  44. Oh and these chocolate chip cookie dough truffles – droooooooooool!

  45. These look wonderful! Good luck on your “quest”:).

  46. Hi Ricki! Thank you for you lovely comment on my blog! I replied there but thought I’d reply here too, as I’d hate for you to think I was sneaking off with your recipe 😉 This isn’t quite the one I used (I remember the one I used specified “raw oat flakes”), but it looks utterly fantastic. Love the coconut oil choc coating, and I’ll have to try that next time!

  47. I made these w/o the chocolate coating and used carob chips instead of chocolate chips (as you recommended)– ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS!!!! Thank you so much!!! Many many kudos to you for inventing gluten free recipes that are ALSO sugar free! I also LOVE all the cute doggie pics!

  48. I emailed on your behalf, but just so you know–I sort of promised you’d bring her chocolate chip cookies!

  49. Annalisa Roy says

    Hi, I emailed and asked her to invite you on. Not noticing that this is four years old. But I told her about how you changed the way I felt about eating, and that instead of pining after the conventional food my friends and family ate, I started creating food even MORE DELICIOUS than theirs. I started to see that maybe this is not a disability. It is like a superpower. Because now even my desserts are healthy. So, armed with your explanations for which kinds of flour to chose and why, and how many ways you can replace egg in a recipe, I’ve started to come up with my own. Inspired by you. Thank you! And, btw, thank you for your s’mores recipe. When we went camping I happily munched away on my special own s’mores.

    • Thank you so much, Annalisa! Let’s keep our fingers crossed that your email re-awakens Ellen’s interest in my recipes and books (who knows?!). 😀 And I’m thrilled that the recipes have made such a difference for you. I LOVE thinking about eating this way as a “superpower”!! And I must admit, the S’Mores (despite being a bit of work) are one of my all-time favorite recipes on this site, too!

  50. I tried them before. They’re soooo delicious 😛


  1. […] cookies (okay, let’s be honest: chocolate chip cookie dough) and pumpkin spice. Sort of like these truffles, but […]

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