I love Bangalore weather at this time of the year. The nip in the air is just right for long hours in bed, snuggles under the quilt, warm pullovers, spicy comfort food and lots of hot coffee.
As the winter sets in, the coffee lover in me suddenly takes over my usual sensible self. With that comes the urge to nibble on something small and lite. This time of course it’s even more special! With a 4 year old who is super active, a newborn who nurses through day and night and very little sleep, I am more in need of snacks and coffee than ever.
Is there a better excuse to bake some cookies? Yes, actually there is It’s December and Christmas is just a few days away.
I decided to take a break from the usual season’s favorite flavours and try something unusual. Unlike my usual cookie recipes, this is a gluten free recipe. I am right now in love with Amaranth. I have been using puffed amaranth and roasted amaranth flour in several ways. ‘Amaranth flour halwa’ has been a latest discovery and I am treating myself to a bowl of it quite often. I decided to try amaranth flour in a cookie and it’s a great success. The nutty grassiness of roasted amaranth flour worked very well with cardamom.
These cookies have healthy and simple ingredients and I would say they are great snacks, especially for nursing mothers. They have a lovely crispy crumbly texture and taste quite ‘buttery’ without any butter in them! With the warm aroma of cardamom, they taste very Indian and go well with ‘Masala Chai’. I am sure these amaranth cookies will be great healthy addition to your holiday baking list.
Try other flavours instead of cardamom. Vanilla or cinnamon would be great too. I tried fennel seeds in one of the batches and it was lovely.
If you consume dairy, try replacing 1 tbsp of the coconut oil with ghee. The aroma is great.
I added a tbsp of cocoa powder to some of the dough and it turned delicious.
If the cookies turn soft, put them in the over at 120 degree Celsius for 5 to 10 minutes and they should turn crisp.
You should be able to replace the flax seed + water mixture with an egg.
- 1 tbsp flax seed powder + 3 tbsp water
- 1/3 cup unrefined cane sugar
- ¼ cup coconut oil (semi solid)
- 3-4 pods of cardamom
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 cup roasted amaranth flour
Pre-heat the oven at 150 degree Celsius.
Grease and line the baking tray.
Combine the flax seed powder and water in a small bowl. Stir well and leave it aside for 5 minutes.
Peal the cardamom pods and crush the small black seeds inside to powder them. Mix the amaranth flour, baking powder and cardamom powder together.
In a big bowl, combine sugar and the coconut oil. Beat well for a few minutes for the sugar to start dissolving in oil. Add the flax seed mixture and beat a little more. Add the flour mixture and sir everything together with a spoon for it to come together into hard dough.
Take about 1 tsp of dough, roll it into a ball and press it between your palms to slightly flatten it. Place it on the baking tray. Repeat this with the rest of the dough. These cookies spread quite a bit so make sure they are placed with at least an inch gap in-between.
Place the baking tray in the pre-heated oven and let it bake for 8-10 minutes. Keep a close eye and get it out of the oven when the edges are slightly browned.
Let the cookies cool for a few minutes on the tray. They will still be too soft to take out. When they are slightly harder, remove them from the baking tray and place them on a cooling rack. These cookies will continue to harden as they cool down.
Store them in an airtight jar and enjoy with your daily cuppa.