These rustic Christmas cookies were inspired by a traditional Russian recipe. Sweetened with honey, full of spices and citrus zest, and with a jam topping, these little cookies are full of flavor.
Traditionally these cookies are rolled out thin, cut into circles and filled with jam (sounds delicious, doesn’t it?). I made the process a bit faster by changing them into jam thumb print cookies. These cookies are almost cake like in texture, as they are more moist in texture.
I find it interesting how very little sweetener and oil/butter some of the authentic Russian cookie recipes call for. We have gotten so used to overly rich and sugary cookies, that we forget that traditionally speaking, just adding some sweetener to a dish or baked good made it special. Today we expect things to be dripping with sweetener to be called a dessert. I appreciate that these cookies aren’t overly sweet, as it makes for a more satisfying snack.
And speaking of nourishing desserts, check out the Nourishing Sweets and Treats Carnival that took place yesterday. There are some wonderful naturally sweetened sweets that were shared there. Thanks everyone for making it such a great success!
Russian Gingerbread Thumb Print Cookies
If you make the cookies smaller, they will be more crisp. Bigger ones will be a bit more cake like.
1/3 cup of virgin coconut oil or butter
1/2 cup of honey
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 3/4 to 2 cups sprouted whole grain flour (read how I made mine in my post about sprouting grain), or white flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon of each, ground cardamon, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, and ground cinnamon
2 tablespoon of crushed blanched almonds (I got blanched slivered almonds and coarsely crushed them with my mortal and pestle).
1 tablespoon of orange zest
1 teaspoon of lemon zest
about 1/2 cup of thick jam (I use fruit sweetened blackberry jam, delicious!)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
1-In a small saucepan, melt the oil/butter and honey together, just until melted
2-In a medium size bowl add the rest of the ingredients, except the jam, and add the oil and honey mixture. Stir until well combined.
3-Take a small amount of the dough into your hands, and roll it into about 1/2 to 1/4 inch size ball. ( If this seems too difficult, place your dough into the freezer for about 20 minutes.). Place on a greased cookie sheet, and using your thumb make a small indent in the top of your ball. Using a small spoon, or teaspoon place a small amount of jam in the indent. Fill the cookie sheet in this manner, keeping the cookies a few inches apart.
4-Place in the oven for about 10-15 minutes, until the bottom and sides are just starting to brown. Cool on cooling sheets and enjoy.
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