Here in the UK, we’ve been experiencing an Indian summer. Blue skies, sunshine, warmth, walking around in short sleeves… I’ve been enjoying it for sure. And so has the garden. Typically winding down for Winter this month, gardens have suddenly burst into colour again. June roses are back in full bloom. I’ve never known this happen before.
Seeing the roses out in bloom again has been the inspiration for my latest experiments in the kitchen. In a recent delivery from Suma, I received this Organic Rose Water by Steenburgs. I absolutely adore it and have been adding it to all kinds of baked and non-baked goodies.
I’ve got a couple of rose-inspired recipes that I’d love to share, kicking off with these gorgeous Salted Pistachio Rose Cookies that I created for the Suma Blogger’s Network ♥
Delicately flavoured with rose, these cookies make a delicious treat, perfect for serving with an ‘Elevenses’ cuppa or as an after school snack. They’re made with wholegrain flour and pistachios so, as cookies go, they are far more healthful than the regular variety.
Since rose is such a sweet flavour, I’ve also been able to cut the sugar right down to just 4 TBSP in a 12 cookie batch. This equates to just 1 tsp per cookie.
Pistachios are quite pricey at the moment, so I’ve been buying the unshelled roasted and salted packs. These tend to be a lot cheaper than the pre-shelled nuts. They work really well in these cookies as the saltiness enhances the cookie flavour. It doesn’t take that long to shell them. About eight minutes. The hard bit is resisting eating them all as you shell.
Makes 12 cookies
Hands on time: 20 minutes Baking time: 12 minutes
Ready in: 35 minutes
55g / 2 oz / ¼ cup unrefined/golden caster sugar (organic sugar)
55ml / 2 fl oz / ¼ cup aroma-free coconut oil or any neutral-flavoured oil
30ml / 1 fl oz / 2 TBSP soya or almond milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
2-3 tsp rose water*
100g / 3½ oz / ¾ cup fine wholemeal or chapatti flour
1 TBSP semolina
¼ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
60g / 2 oz / ½ cup shelled roasted salted pistachios
* The strength of rose water is likely to vary by brand. I suggest starting with 2 tsp and adjust after tasting the batter. In my test batches I used 3 tsp and some of my testers found it a little overpowering.
Pre-heat the oven to 180C (160C fan) / 350F. Line two large baking trays with non stick baking paper. Roughly chop the pistachios. If using coconut oil, melt it by placing the jar in a bowl of hot water.
Using a strong fork, whisk together the sugar, oil, milk, syrup, vanilla extract and rose water in a mixing bowl until it becomes smooth and caramel-like. Sift in the flour, semolina, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt, and stir to combine. Set aside half of the nuts, then stir the remaining half into the batter.
Scoop tablespoons of dough and space them out on the prepared trays. Using damp fingers, press into cookie shapes (these cookies won’t spread much). Sprinkle on the remaining pistachio pieces and press into the dough.
Bake in the pre-heated oven for 10 minutes. Turn the trays round and bake for another 3-5 minutes, until lightly golden. Leave to cool on the trays for a few minutes (they will firm up as they cool) then transfer to a wire rack. Once completely cooled, store in an airtight container where they will keep for a couple of weeks. They also freeze well.
Are you experiencing unseasonal weather too?