Cakey- Chai inspired Cookies

It is officially December so you know what time it is--COOKIE SEASON!



It is also the time of year to admit that I, Isabelle, have a cardamom problem. I put it in pretty much every recipe I develop, (I can’t help it!!) mainly for its lovely floral and slightly earthy flavor. So when I heard that Cosette of Cosette's Kitchen was hosting a virtual cookie party, I instantly felt beckoned once more to add cardamom to anything I could get my hands on.

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It’s safe to say that I love a good cookie, but usually find myself wishing for more complexity and a little less sweetness. That’s where these guys come in! I used spelt flour for a bit of nuttiness (plus it has a lower gluten content, yielding a softer cookie) in addition to scaling up the salt and adding warming spices such as (you guessed it!) cardamom and ginger.

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This cookie certainly takes inspiration from the ingredients in chai, or the word for “tea” in Hindi. Though the ingredients in chai differ across the various regions of India, some of the common spices or “masala” featured includes things such as cinnamon, cloves, black peppercorns, ginger, and of course cardamom. If you’d like to read up a bit more about the history of chai, here are two articles that might be of interest.


Onto the recipe!





Cakey-Chai inspired Cookies

Ingredients:


-2 cups spelt flour

-1 cup AP flour

-16 tablespoons butter, softened

-1 cup coconut sugar

-1/4 cup maple syrup

-1 egg + 1 egg yolk

-1 tsp baking soda

-1/2 tsp cardamom

-1/2 tsp flakey salt

-1/4 tsp ginger

-1/8 tsp almond extract


Powdered Sugar Icing:

-1.5 cups powdered sugar

-1/8 tsp cardamom

-2 tbsp milk or half and half (with an additional tbsp as needed)



Method:


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Add flours, baking soda, salt, and spices to a large bowl and mix until smooth. Set aside. In a separate mixing bowl, add room temperature butter and mix with a hand or stand mixer on medium speed until smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Add the coconut sugar and once more mix on medium speed until the mixture is light and thoroughly combined, an additional 3-5 minutes. Add egg/ egg yolk and mix on medium speed until the mixture is smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the maple syrup to the butter/sugar and once more mix on medium until the mixture is smooth and light. Add half of the dry ingredients and mix slowly on a low speed until the flour combines with the wet ingredients. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix on a low speed until the dough comes together. Using a large spoon or ice cream scoop, portion out slightly larger than golf ball sized amounts of dough onto a lined sheet tray (yield is about 12-14 cookies). Place in the middle rack of the oven and let cook for about 12-15 minutes, checking 15 minutes in. Remove from oven and let cool for about 20-30 minutes. In a medium bowl, add the powdered sugar, milk or half and half, and cardamom and whisk until no lumps remain. Add an additional tablespoon of liquid as needed, until the icing is the texture of honey. Place icing in a piping bag or a zip lock bag, cutting a small hole in the corner. Ice cookies by piping the icing in zig-zag motion, creating lines of icing on half of the cookies. Let the icing set then enjoy -- it pairs nicely with a hot cup of chai ;)




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