Hazelnut Shortbread Fingers
Looks like I'm finally getting rid of this nasty flu that has been keeping a bit away from my blogging tasks. But fear not, cause not even a never-ending cough has stopped me from baking and preparing new recipes like this one and some more festive. Now that I'm getting back to normal, I'm finally done with my Christmas shopping (insert fanfare music here) and I feel the Christmas spirit in full force I promise next week I'll come up with a great recipe to wow your guests, one that is as eye-appealing as delicious.
When I was looking for inspiration to write a new blog post I thought that something healthy and not overly sweet would be the perfect recipe to bring you before we officially begin with the family feasts and work dinners.
I found the recipe for these Hazelnut Shortbread Fingers in one of my favorite vegan cookbooks, Whole Grain Vegan Baking, it's a cool book with wholesome and tasty recipes and these shortbread fingers are the perfect example that you can make yummy things that can be also healthy and good for any occasion. They are very easy to make and you will just need a few ingredients (only five ingredients, to be exact) plus the hazelnut taste is so good and fills the house with a delicious nutty-toasty aroma. I love them with a cup of warm tea or to soak in my breakfast oat milk, they are such a good guilt-free treat.
If you have a powerful food processor you won't have a problem with this recipe: it's as easy as putting everything inside and pulse until you get a kneadable dough. My food processor is old, small and weak so after trying several alternatives to make the mixture become less crumbly and more cohesive I almost gave up but I tasted the dough and it was delicious and I thought: 'there's no way I'm throwing away the dough...maple syrup and virgin coconut oil are darn expensive!!!'.
So...hands to the rescue! Yep, usually when a stubborn dough or (in this case) the lack of baking supplies makes it hard to success with a recipe I appeal to the old school method: do it with your own hands. Luckily to me, this time it worked again!
...and this has just reminded me that I'm still in time to ask Santa for a powerful food processor.;-)
(Recipe from 'Whole Grain Vegan Baking' by Celine Steen and Tamasin Noyes)
(makes 8 fingers)
1/2 cup shelled hazelnuts, not skinned.
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour.
1/4 tsp fine sea salt.
1/4 cup pure maple syrup.
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted.
Preheat oven to 325 ºF (170ºC). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Combine the hazelnuts, flour, and salt in a food processor. Process until the hazelnuts are finely ground. Add in the maple syrup and coconut oil, pulsing to combine. The dough should be kneadable and not crumbly.
Place the dough on the prepared sheet, knead it for a couple of beats just to make sure it is cohesive, press it down with your hands and roll it out a bit to form a 8 x 4-inch (20 x 10 cm) rectangle.
Cut the rectangle into eight 1-inch (2.5 cm) wide by 4-inch (10 cm) long fingers. Use the tines of a fork to prick the tops of the shortbread. Place the fingers on the sheet about 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart.
Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, or until the fingers are light golden brown around the edges and at the bottom. Carefully transfer to a wire rack to cool.