I had promised to post recipes on Friday and diet musings on Saturdays during Holidailies, but I’ve been so frazzled by all this marking that I skipped straight to the weekend in yesterday’s post. I figured I’d better rectify the situation, and what better way than with cookies?
This is a recipe I originally created for my cooking classes, and one we baked a couple of weeks ago at that last class in my house.
I’d been given a jar of organic pumpkinseed butter about a year ago, and found I wasn’t crazy about the flavor on its own. I knew that pumpkinseeds are uber-healthy (they contain not only monounsaturated fats, the same type in olive oil, but also an abundance of zinc, shown to help prevent prostate cancer and the one mineral involved in more metabolic functions than any other in the body), so I was particularly chagrined that I didn’t like the taste. How to make amends for this terrible affront? Why, convert the p-butter into cookies, of course.
These are quick and easy, with the traditional shortbread texture when baked the full 12 minutes. For a slightly chewy cookie, bake a bit less.
I brought these to a Christmas party at a friend’s last weekend* and they disappeared fairly quickly, even though they were nestled between cherry pie and a multi-layered, cream-covered chocolate concoction. Not bad for a little vegan, gluten-free treat.
Pumpkinseed Shortbread Buttons
These rich tasting cookies combine a subtle flavor with the traditional sandy texture of butter-laden shortbread. Use other seed butters as a substitute, such as sunflower or sesame (tahini) or a combination, if you prefer.
1/2 cup organic pumpkin seed butter
1/4 cup ground flax seeds
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/8 tsp. sea salt
Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, or spray with nonstick spray.
In a medium bowl, combine the seed butter, flax seeds, maple syrup, and vanilla and mix until creamy and evenly blended. Add the flour and salt and mix well until you have a fairly stiff dough.
Using a teaspoon or small scoop, measure and drop spoonfuls of the dough onto the paper. Flatten slightly with the back of a glass or a moistened palm.
Bake for 10-12 minutes, turning halfway, until cookies are light golden. Allow to cool before removing from sheets. Store in an airtight container. Makes about one dozen.
*Festive Variation: Pulse about 1/4 cup dairy-free chocolate chips in a food processor until crumbled. Stir the crumbled chocolate into the batter along with the flour and salt.
[This recipe will also appear in my upcoming cookbook, Sweet Freedom, along with more than 100 others, most of which are not featured on this blog. For more information, check the “Cookbook” button at right, or visit the cookbook blog.]