Friday, April 15, 2011

Cashew Butter Cookies

I feel like I have A MILLION things to do right now, but I am making myself sit down with a glass of wine (it is Friday, right?) and share this wonderful recipe with all you eager foodies. After all, that is why I am in the business to begin with: to share, create, be inspired and celebrate all that is GOOD FOOD. And this is good food.

The idea is simple: a play on the all-time favorite peanut butter cookie, with a slight twist. Instead of jarred peanut butter which is 1.) a high allergen food and 2.) ground nuts that have then been exposed to oxygen at room temperature for who knows how long, we are dealing with freshly ground raw cashew here, baby. Nuts are chock full of (delicious) volatile oils, which go rancid quickly when ground (exposed to oxygen), toasted (exposed to heat) and left at ambient temperatures for too long. The best way to embrace the (delicious) nutrition inside that nutty package is to buy them raw, store them in your freezer, and grind them just before consuming. 

So anyway, as I am having deja vu as I type, I am sure you have heard it all before :) The short and long, this is a (delicious) new version that you just have to try! A number of flours can be used, but I like whole grain spelt flour if you can tolerate a bit of gluten, as it has a great texture, yet still offers some diversity to the diet. I have also made them with brown rice flour, to the delight of a different crowd. Have fun, enjoy, and don't forget the forked criss-crosses!

Cashew Butter Cookies
Makes 15 cookies
1 cup spelt flour
½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon fine grain sea salt

½ cup cashews
½  cup honey, agave, maple syrup,
 or a mixture
3 tbs. extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cane sugar, for garnishing
Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
In a large food processor, grind the cashews to a smooth butter. 
In a medium mixing bowl combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. In a separate larger bowl combine the cashew butter, sweetener of choice, olive oil, and vanilla and stir until combined. Pour the flour mixture over the cashew butter mixture and stir. Let sit for five minutes, give another quick stir.

Roll a tablespoon of the dough into balls and place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Using a fork dipped in water, flatten each cookie with a criss-cross pattern. Sprinkle with cane sugar to garnish. Bake for 10- 11 minutes, making sure not to over bake them as they will dry out. Let cool and harden slightly before enjoying.

Last time, I served them in a platter with Sesame Kelp Bars and Living Fudge.

Relax. Eat Well.

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