Amartha-Walnut Cookies with Brandy

Amartha-Walnut Cookies with Brandy
Staff Writer
Sara Remington

Everyone needs a real butter cookie once in a while. I certainly do. These cookies showcase the intense nuttiness of amaranth flour. Rolling them in minuscule amaranth seeds gives them a playful touch and adds a nice crunch, but they are also delicious without. Fine sea salt retains some of its crystalline texture during baking, adding sparks of salt to contrast the natural sweetness of the whole grain flours.

For best outcome allow the dough to chill thorougly and firm up, ideally overnight. If the dough balls become soft while you finish them with the walnuts, as in step 4, chill the baking sheet with the cookies for 20 minutes before baking.
 

10
Servings
236
Calories Per Serving
Deliver Ingredients

Notes

Reprinted with permission from Ancient Grains for Modern Meals by Maria Speck, copyright © 2011. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc.

Ingredients

  • 4 Ounces toasted walnut pieces
  • 1/2 Cup sugar
  • 3/4 Cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 Cup amaranth flour
  • 1/4 Teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 7 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 1 Tablespoon brandy
  • 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 Tablespoons amaranth seeds, for rolling
  • 32 toasted walnut halves

Directions

Place the 4 ounces of walnuts and 2 tablespoons of the sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Process until the mixture looks sandy and the nuts are finely ground, about 15 seconds.

Whisk together the white whole wheat flour, amaranth flour, and salt in a medium bowl. In a large bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth, about 30 seconds. Gradually add the remaining sugar and beat until fluffy and smooth, 1-2 minutes, scraping the sides with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the egg yolk, brandy, and vanilla and beat until well blended, about 30 seconds. Reduce the speed to low and beat in the nut mixture, then gradually add the flour mixture until it is just incorporated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill until the dough is firm, at least 3 hours or overnight. 

Place a rack 1 notch below the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Line 2 large rimless baking sheets with parchment paper. Place the amaranth seeds in a small bowl. 

Pinch off walnut-size pieces of the firm dough and roll them between your palms into smooth 1 inch balls. Roll each ball in amaranth seeds, gently pressing to adhere if needed, and place on the baking sheet, leaving 2 inches between pieces. Make an indentation with your thumb in the center of each ball, gently pressing it down about a third of its height, and then lightly press a walnut half into the center. 

Bake, 1 sheet at a time, until the cookies just turn golden brown around the edges and firm up but still yield to gentle pressure, 17-18 minutes. Remove from the oven and carefully slide the parchment paper with the cookies onto a wire rack to cool. The cookies will crisp as they cool.
 

Nutritional Facts

Total Fat
10g
14%
Sugar
2g
2%
Saturated Fat
2g
8%
Carbohydrate, by difference
32g
25%
Protein
4g
9%
Vitamin A, RAE
3µg
0%
Calcium, Ca
120mg
12%
Choline, total
2mg
0%
Fiber, total dietary
5g
20%
Folate, total
39µg
10%
Iron, Fe
3mg
17%
Magnesium, Mg
40mg
13%
Niacin
2mg
14%
Phosphorus, P
88mg
13%
Selenium, Se
8µg
15%
Sodium, Na
196mg
13%
Water
12g
0%
Zinc, Zn
1mg
13%

Walnut Shopping Tip

Whenever possible, purchase whole, not presliced or chopped nuts. They have a longer shelf life.

Walnut Cooking Tip

Toasting your nuts helps release essential oils and intensifies their flavor.