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Saturday, July 26, 2014

Orange Anise Almond Cookies

I've recently decided it's a good idea to drink perrier with a squeeze of orange juice for a change instead of lime or lemon.  It's such a good refreshing idea that I now find myself with a constant supply of oranges full of sweet nectar and waiting to be consumed at any time of the day, in my perrier, or with my eggs at breakfast, or just any time of the day when I open the fridge an spot one.
This morning I had a cookie flash.  Fresh oranges in a cookie.  Hey it worked with ruby red pomelos and I really enjoyed the citrus touch of those ones.  The nice twist on these is that they are gluten free.  That happened unintentionally and I only realized it as I started to list the ingredients.  It's nice to know that even if you are condemned to do that GF dance, you can still eat delicious cookies!
The addition of anise seeds was supposed to give a subtle background licorice flavor, but it was too subtle.  Next time I'll put a whole tsp of seeds.
Yield 4 dozen cookies
1/2 cup (110g) room temperature butter
3/4 cup (185g) brown sugar
1 large egg, beaten
1 Tbsp orange marmelade
zest from 1 orange
juice from 1/2 orange
175g (6oz) ground almonds
125g (4.4oz) buckwheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp anise seeds, ground
1/4 tsp salt
slivered almonds for topping
1.  Sift together the flour, ground almonds, baking powder, salt, anise, and ginger.
2.  In a separate mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together, then add the egg and beat well until homogenous.
3.  Add the orange juice, zest and marmelade and mix well.
4.  Ditch the whip and switch to a wooden spoon.  Add the dry ingredients little by little, while mixing until all incorporated.  The end result should not be dry and should stick to your fingers.
5.  Chill the batter while you preheat the oven to 350°F 175°C.  If you chill the batter it will be easier to manipulate.
6.  Take a scant tablespoon size amount of dough and plop it onto you cookie sheet.  This might be easier with an ice cream scooper.  I don't own one of those.  Sprinkle with a bit of slivered almonds.  Keep about 2 inches of space around each one since they are going to expand.
7.  Bake for about 12-14 minutes or until they are just about to golden.  Remove and let cool on a wire rack until they set.

These are very orangey and PEPpy.  They are quite chewy, not cakey or crunchy, but bursting with deliciousness.
Perfect for this strange hail/sun/rain/heat weather we're having right now!
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