Saturday, 29 March 2014

Ginger, Apricot & Chocolate Spelt Cookies

These sweet little cookies are perfect for spring - fresh, fiery and fruity. This recipe is based on Heidi Swanson's Ginger Cookie recipe from her brilliant book Eat Natural Every Day, although I've adjusted a couple of the more obscure ingredients slightly to make them more student-friendly. The combination of flavours may sound a bit intense, but surprisingly they work really well together - with the fiery ginger, fruity apricot and bitter chocolate balancing each other out. The spelt flour gives the cookies a nutty, earthy flavour which tones down the sweetness too, and also makes them a little more dense and filling than your bog-standard biscuit - they're kind of like posh gingernuts. Enjoy fresh from the oven with a mug of something warm and comforting. 

To make approx. 30 small cookies you will need...

35g demerara sugar
85g dark chocolate, finely chopped
115g spelt or wholemeal flour
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 heaped tsp ground ginger
A pinch of salt
60g butter
30ml black treacle
50g caster sugar
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
1 small egg, beaten
85g dried apricots, finely chopped 

You will need to...

- Put the demerara sugar into a small bowl and set aside. Chop your chocolate and apricots finely.

- Heat the butter in a medium sized saucepan until just melting, then stir in the treacle, caster sugar and fresh ginger. The mixture should be warm but not hot. Add in the beaten egg, then the flour, bicarbonate of soda, salt and ground ginger - mix well. 
- Stir in the apricots and chocolate. 

- Chill the mixture in the fridge for about 30 minutes, until it firms up a bit.
- Preheat the oven to 180C and line two trays with baking paper.

- Scoop the dough out in level tablespoons, then tear those pieces of dough in two and roll each piece into a ball.

- Drop the little balls one-by-one into the bowl of demerara sugar and roll around until the outside is well covered in sugar crystals. 

- Place the sugary balls onto the prepared trays, leaving plenty of space between them to allow for spreading. 

- Bake in the oven for 7 - 10 minutes, until the cookies have puffed up a little and are dark, fragrant and cracked on top. They will still be a little soft so allow to firm up a bit on the tray before serving.

Enjoy! C x

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