LEMON STAR ANISE COOKIES
I am not much of a baker but I've recently been getting into it. I thought looking up easy low ingredient recipes would be a good start because when baking, exact measurements of ingredients matter, while in cooking, you can sort of eyeball stuff and still come out with something amazing. So when I came across this recipe posted on the kitchn I knew I had to add my two cents of flavor combinations to make these cookies a little more interesting.
How did I come up with the combination of lemon and star anise? To be honest, when I'm in my kitchen and I am trying to create or recreate something new, I look in my fridge and pantry and pick out whatever catches my eye. Then I put everything together and its either really amazing or a complete flop. I hate when flops happen but it's worth trying when you know that producing something amazing is a possibility. The lemon flavoring is prominent here especially because of the zest but the star anise gives it a pleasant background flavor that will make someone wonder what it is if they don’t know you used it. I like these cookies to be on the chewy and moist in the middle side but as the original recipe mentions you can also flatten the cookie dough with more surface area to get crisper cookies. I haven't tried baking them that way yet but if you do, please share your results!
A Mortar and Pestle (to grind up the star anise pods)
A Micro plane to zest the lemon
2 cups finely ground blanched almond flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 cup of coconut nectar
1 tsp of vanilla extract
1 tsp of grated lemon zest
½ tbs of freshly squeezed lemon juice
10-12 Star anise pods (produces about ¼ tsp of powder)
A pinch of fine salt
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Grind up star anise pods with the mortar and pestle and measure about 1/4 tsp of fine powder. If you need to, grind a few more pods until you get the desired quantity.
Whisk almond flour, baking powder, ground star anise pods, and salt in a large bowl.
With a wooden spoon mix in the coconut nectar, vanilla, lemon juice, and lemon zest until everything is well incorporated.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a tablespoon measure, scoop out cookie dough and form into small balls. Flatten to your desired thickness by lightly using your fingers or the bottom of a mug or glass on the baking sheet. Make sure cookies are spread out evenly on the sheet.
Place in the oven for about 12 minutes on the middle rack until the bottoms and edges of the cookies are slightly brown.
Cool for about 10 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. I waited about an hour to let the cookies set. You can probably wait less. Serve these cookies with a cool glass of fresh almond milk and enjoy!