I don’t think anything is more synonymous with the festive season than the smell of warm spices……That incredible aroma that seems to imbue itself in everything and waft ever so tantalisingly through crisp, chilly air hinting that somewhere just ahead there is a warm glass of mulled wine and some form of delicious treat.
As you can probably tell from that introduction I am quite a big fan of gingerbread but have yet to find a good ‘healthified’ alternative (cue the apron donning and kitchen experimentations 🙂 )
A classic recipe will call for flour, butter, lots of sugar, usually molasses or treacle as well, making it entirely inaccessible to my taste buds, but how to replicate that incredible flavour sensation without any of those ingredients?! Well without blowing my own trumpet I’m starting to feel like a bit of an old hat now and this paired down version is just as delightful in my book!
You still get that rich warming flavour of spices, a hint of treacle-y sweetness and a natural nuttiness from the oats to tie it all together. I’ve chosen to decorate these as little edible festive gifts but the recipe is just as divine if the biscuits are left plain.
200g oats (use gluten free if necessary)
50g coconut oil
50ml raw maple syrup
1 heaped tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 heaped tablespoon ground ginger
A small pinch of pink Himalayan salt.
Optional to decorate: 50g dark or raw chocolate, ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
- Preheat your oven to 180ºC and cut 2 pieces of parchment paper to line 2 large baking trays.
- Place your oats in a high speed blender and pulse until they resemble a flour. Add to a large bowl with the spices and salt.
- Melt the coconut oil in a small pan then whisk with the maple syrup, leave to cool for a couple of minutes before pouring into your bowl.
- Use a flat, butter-style knife to chop through your mix, gradually bringing everything together then using you hands to form a dough (you might need to add ¼-½ cup of cold water to make it stick together but dribble this in slowly)
- Turn out your ball of dough onto 1 of your pieces of parchment paper, using a rolling pin to roll out to about 1cm in thickness, then use your favourite (festive) cutters to make your biscuits.
- Transfer the cut cookies to your other piece of parchment on a tray and bake for 10-12 mins until very lightly golden. Bring your scraps back into a ball, re-roll and repeat until the dough is used up (definitely try the raw dough too, it’s DELICIOUS ) For a softer cookie style stick closer to 10 mins but for a snappier biscuit go a little longer. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
- Roughly break the chocolate into pieces and melt in a bowl over a pan of simmering water. Chop the pumpkin seeds to a fine rubble then use a fork dipped in the chocolate to wave over the biscuits before sprinkling with the pumpkin seeds, et voila!