Monday, November 30, 2009

Pumpkin Cranberry Protein/Fiber Cookie Recipe

Not the sexiest recipe title, but it sure makes you feel better about eating a dessert item with the extra protein and fiber!

The trick to swapping out some of the white flour, is to get good unbleached parchment paper so that your cookies hold their shape and don't go *splat*! ! I've had my share of mishaps in my multi-year experimentation with improving the nutrient density of yummy baked goods, so you get pleasure for your palette and nutrition for your body!

Supplies: Cookie sheets, unbleached parchment paper (not wax paper)


1/2 c butter, softened (unsalted preferred)
3/4 c white sugar (decreased sugar than other recipes)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg (free-range omega-3 fortified eggs are recommended)
1 c organic pumpkin puree
2 c gluten-free baking flour (if this is not available, change the recipe to be 2 c all purpose flour)
1 tsp baking powder (aluminum-free preferred)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt (kosher preferred)
1/2 cup protein/fiber powder
1 c dried cranberries (unsweetened is preferred, but more difficult to find)
1 tsp ground cinnamon (great anti-inflammatory!)
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 tbl orange or lemon zest (optional)
1/2 c chopped walnuts (optional, highly recommended--great source of Omega-3 fats)

1) Preheat oven to 375 F. Do NOT grease cookie sheets. Line with unbleached parchment paper.
2) In a large mixing bowl, cream butter + sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla, egg, and pumpkin. This is your wet mixture.
3) Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices, and protein powder. Stir dry ingredients by hand with a spatula into the wet mixture. (tip: do not over-mix.) Stir in cranberries and orange zest and walnuts. If you like extra crunchy walnuts, save the walnuts for later.
4) Drop by tablespoons onto parchment paper-lined cookie sheets. Make a size that is on the smaller side, for better portion-control and for cuteness. Yes, presentation matters! For crunchy walnut topping, sprinkle and press walnuts on top of cookies.
5) Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Enjoy after cooling on racks. Let cool completely so that the crunch on the outside is there, otherwise it gets more soft due to pumpkin moisture. Store in airtight containers or plastic bags.
Gift them to friends and colleagues so that they are eaten fresh within 2-3 days (so YOU can enjoy but you are not eating them all!)
If you want to save the dough, wrap in a log with plastic wrap, then in a freezer storage bag so that you can heat up a few cookies in the toaster oven as a weeknight post-dinner treat.

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