The delicious flavours of these cookies are based on the traditional middle eastern flavours of pistachio and rose water which are used a lot in their sweets and baking. I have made these vegan but you can replace the coconut oil with butter if you prefer. I have always loved these flavours and so does Ralph (as a little girl I was given little boxes of rose and violet creams by my mummy) his review of this recipe is as follows..
These are a great balance between crunchy and chewy…and the pistachio and rose are the perfect combination. They taste like Lebanon in the Spring time… and who doesn’t want to see what that tastes like.
Makes 24 cookies.
200g self raising flour (I use self raising spelt from Whole Foods Market)
150g mild coconut oil
150g of golden caster sugar
3 tablespoons of golden syrup
2 teaspoons of rose water
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon of salt
A couple of handfuls of pistachios, raw no skin
1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
3 heaped tablespoons of powdered sugar
Some edible rose petals (optional)
Preheat the oven to 170°C and line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicon sheets.
Put the pistachios into a food processor and blitz until there is a fine powder of pistachio (like ground almonds) at the bottom and small pieces on top.
Separate the pieces for decorating the top of the cookie and keep the ground pistachio for the dough. It should be 2/3 powder, 1/3 pieces. Set aside.
Place the golden syrup, the sugar and the coconut oil in a large mixing bowl and whizz up with an electric whisk till a bit fluffy.
Add the flour, baking soda, ground pistachios, vanilla, rose water and salt. You can mix this with your hands at this point, until you form a smooth ball of dough.
Roll the dough into a sausage, I do this with my hands, and cut into 24 evenly sized pieces.
Roll these pieces into little balls and place on the baking trays spaced well apart, six on each tray. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden.
Leave on the baking tray for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack as they are very soft when they are fresh from the oven. Repeat with the rest of the dough, then leave to cool.
Put the powdered sugar in a small bowl and mix with a little water until smooth and the thickness of double cream. Spoon onto the cookies so most of the surface of the cookie is covered. Sprinkle on the pistachio pieces and the rose petals.
The rose petals I buy are from Verde and Company.