Strawberry + rose thumbprint cookies
Childishly simple to make but very good to eat, these little cookies are made of the good stuff: oats, dates, coconut oil and a quick jam sweetened with coconut sugar. While they are still a treat, this line-up of whole ingredients means I eat these with even more of a smile on my face. They are also great for little ones. I love rose geranium and use it to infuse berries and rhubarb.
I have a little pot of it on my windowsill and tear off a few leaves to add to a pan every few weeks. If rose geranium is a bridge too far for you, you could mimic the fragrant rose notes with a tiny splash of rose water or orange blossom water or leave it out altogether.
I make these cookies year round, with apricots or peaches in summer, pears in autumn and frozen berries in the winter.
MAKES ABOUT 24
FOR THE JAM
5 rose geranium leaves or rose water (optional)
1 vanilla pod, split in half lengthways
3 tablespoons coconut sugar
the juice of 1 lemon
FOR THE COOKIES
100g coconut oil
150g rolled oats
100g pitted Medjool dates (about 8)
150g ground almonds
a pinch of flaky sea salt
the zest and juice of 1 unwaxed orange
Wash and hull the strawberries. If they are really large, cut them in half. Place in a pan with the rose geranium leaves, vanilla pod, sugar and lemon juice. If you’re using rose water instead of rose geranium leaves, add it in small quantities after the jam is cooked and cooled, tasting after each addition to get the right balance. Cook the strawberries over a low heat for 30 minutes, until they have completely softened and gone jammy.
Meanwhile, make the cookie dough. Preheat the oven to 170oC/150oC fan/gas 3. Melt the coconut oil in a small saucepan and take off the heat. Blitz the oats in a food processor until you have a scruffy flour. Add the dates and blitz again until the dough is pinchable between your fingers. Add the almonds and pour the coconut oil in slowly, until the dough is starting to come together, then add the salt, orange juice and zest.
Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper – you may need two trays if yours are small. Take a tablespoon of cookie dough and shape it into discs about 11⁄2cm deep with your hands. Place the discs on the baking tray, then stamp an indent into each one with your thumb. Remove the rose geranium leaves from the jam and spoon a teaspoon of jam into each little indent.
Bake for 30 minutes until golden around the edges and jammy and dark in the middle, then transfer to a wire rack to cool.