Gingerbread Hearts (Vegan, Gluten-free)

December 12, 2014

Think of these as a pre-recipe for the Twelve Days of Christmas series, which starts tomorrow. Heads up to start checking daily as of tomorrow so you get to see a new recipe every day! I've decided not to include these as part of this series because they're fairly lightly adapted from the Oh She Glows graham cracker recipe and I don't want to include recipes that aren't fully my own. They're pretty dang good though, and the icing recipe is 100% mine. It's the result of a terrible cookie failure. I also didn't really like the way the photos turned out for these so the one above is the only one you're getting!

The only reason these aren't gingerbread people is because I borrowed cookie cutters and the gingerbread people looked like aliens. I ate them before anyone could see their weirdness. Hearts can be nice too, and they're so pretty to decorate the tree and to hang in windows.

Adapted from Oh She Glows

Ingredients:
1 cup pecan meal, ground a little finer in a food processor
1 1/2 cup oat flour
1/3 cup buckwheat flour
2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
1 tablespoon ground flax
1/4 cup coconut sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cardamom*
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup blackstrap molasses
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Heat the oven to 325F and grease or line a cookie sheet (or two, or three. This makes a big batch).

Combine the pecan meal, oat flour, buckwheat flour, arrowroot powder, ground flax, coconut sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cardamom, salt, and baking soda in a large bowl.

In a small bowl, mix the melted coconut oil, molasses, maple syrup, and vanilla.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix thoroughly. Let it sit for five minutes. Sprinkle a pretty generous amount of buckwheat flour on a flat surface and flour a rolling pin. Roll the dough out in two or three batches to 1 cm thick. Cut into desired shapes and bake for 8 minutes for chewy cookies. Let them cool for a couple of minutes before removing and cooling completely on a rack.

Icing:
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup coconut butter
1/4 cup coconut nectar*
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon juice

Melt the coconut oil, then mix in the coconut butter and stir until it melts into the oil. Leave it at room temperature until it's solid. I don't recommend refrigerating it to make it solid as it tends to separate. Beat in the coconut nectar, vanilla, and lemon juice until smooth. The consistency is very similar to royal icing. Pipe it onto your cookies with a teeny tiny piping bag. Take breaks because your hands will melt the icing and make it into a goopy mess.

Notes:
1. Use cloves instead of cardamom for a more traditional flavour. I love cardamom and despise cloves.
2. You can also substitute regular molasses, but blackstrap is SO HEALTHY. Iron, baby.
3. Honey is a wonderful substitute for the coconut nectar, and my preferred choice, if you eat honey. Maple syrup is too thin to use here.
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