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Double Quinoa Cookies with Cranberries & Walnuts

Posted May 03 2012 11:21am

Greetings, all!

My posts have been sporadic these past months, to say the least. Mea culpa, friends. I've been in  masochistic recipe development- and cookbook writing- mode, replete with piggy-backing deadlines, manic hair-pulling, and incessant teeth gnashing. Whee! The only way to survive has been to let a few things go, such as regular blog posting...and housework...and eyebrow plucking (hello unibrow).

But no complaints (except from Kevin), especially because I am so excited SO EXCITED about my upcoming (specifically, August 28th) book. Wait for comes the shameless self-promotion... drumroll...

I've used quinoa every which way in this book and the happy side-benefit is that all of the recipe testing has left me feeling healthier than ever and 5 pounds lighter to boot. 

One of my goals with the book was to showcase the versatility of quinoa flour , too.  If you've poked around here on on Enlightened Cooking, you may have noticed that I've posted a few recipes using quinoa flour. I love that it is delicious, produces beautiful quickbreads, flatbreads and sweet treats without the addition of xanthan gums or the like, is naturally gluten-free, über-healthy (complete protein, baby), and, in adiditon to be available milled and ready-to-use, can be made with ease using a cheap-o coffee mill. I've included more than 100 baking recipes in the book that use it (exclusively, not in combination with other flours). 

Enough yakking, it's time to show, not tell. These are my double quinoa cookies, which you can happily munch on for breakfast on the go, a snack, or a treat. Easy, yummy, and both curious kids and skeptical spouses approve.

I'll be sharing lots (LOTS) more quinoa fun now that I'm (momentarily) shackle-free (i.e., big round of edits complete, text is off to typesetter). But for now, I'm off to have my cookie and eat it, too...right after I clean the refrigerator and find the tweezers.

Double Quinoa Cookies with Cranberries & Walnuts

Your subconscious will register “cozy comfort” with this nostalgic combination of cranberries, walnuts and cinnamon. Cooked quinoa in the dough gives the cookies a unique and incredibly appealing texture reminiscent of oatmeal and a flavor hinting of toasted sesame.

Makes about 42 cookies

Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C)
1 large baking sheet, lined with parchment paper

1-1/4 cups    quinoa flour   
1 tbsp    cornstarch or arrowroot      
1 tsp    ground cinnamon   
1/2 tsp    baking soda
1/2 tsp    fine sea salt   
1 cup    natural cane sugar or packed light brown sugar   
1    large egg   
1/2 cup    unrefined virgin coconut oil, warmed  slightly, or unsalted butter, softened   
1 tsp    vanilla extract   
1-1/2 cups    cooked quinoa (see below), cooled   
3/4 cup    dried cranberries   
1/2 cup    chopped toasted walnuts or pecans   

1.    In a small bowl, whisk together quinoa flour, cornstarch, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt.
2.    In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat sugar, egg, oil and vanilla until blended. Stir  in flour mixture until blended. Using a wooden spoon, Stir in quinoa, cranberries and walnuts.
3.    Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheet, spacing them 2 inches apart.
4.    Bake  in preheated oven for 9 to 12 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool on pan on a wire rack for 2 minutes, then transfer to the rack to cool. Repeat with remaining dough.

*    Other dried fruits, such as raisins, blueberries, and chopped apricots may be used in place of the raisins.
*    If you have a nut allergy, toasted seeds (such as sunflower seeds, pepitas, hemp seeds) may be used in place of the nuts. The nuts may also be omitted entirely without any substitution.

Cooked Quinoa:
To prepare 1-1/2 cups of cooked quinoa, combine 1/2 cup quinoa and 1 cup water in a small saucepan . Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 12 to 15 minutes or until liquid is just barely absorbed. Remove from heat. Cover and let stand 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, fluff with a fork, and cool completely for use in the cookies.
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