The Walnut Surprise Cookies in my first cookbook are, surprise! brownies.  [Editor’s Note: technically blondies]  Unprepossessing, they are delicious and always a hit.  The best cookie ever.  But now I use the basic formula to make great flourless and gluten-free cookies.  I love the fact, no matter which variation, all it takes is a bowl, wooden spoon, and a strong arm.  (Read, too, later in this newsletter about coconut sugar, suitable for diabetics, perfect for these cookies, now available in our bulk department.)

Makes enough to fill a 9″ pie plate or an 8-9″ square cookie pan; cut into 12 pie-shaped pieces or 12 squares

1 C Sucanat, Rapadura or coconut sugar 1 C dried coconut or nut meal; or ½ C cocoa powder;
1 free-range egg 2 Tbsp vanilla extract
something to grease pan (see below)  pinch Himalayan pink salt
1 C any combination of dried fruit and/or chopped nuts and/or chocolate chips

Grease pie plate or cookie pan.  How do we grease?  With a mixture of half liquid lecithin and half oil.  Mix up a jar full and keep in cupboard.  Use a pastry brush to spread.  All you need is a thin, thin layer.  Alternatively, Spectrum spray works like a dream too.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small bowl, mix sugar, egg, vanilla and salt with a wooden spoon until somewhat liquid-y.  Add remaining two ingredients.  Your choice of one from each category.  Or choose something you like not mentioned above.  It’s the proportions which stay the same.  Mix well again.

Spoon batter into pie plate or cookie pan.    Wet your hands and quickly press batter to cover pie plate or pan.   Pop into oven.  Bake about 25 minutes.  These are done when the cookies begin to pull away from the edges of the pan.  Remove pan from oven and let stand for 5 minutes.  Cut into pie wedges or cookie squares while batter is still warm so you’ll be able to get them out of the pan once they’re completely cool (don’t worry about nice straight edges).

Amanda says that the kitchen greases the pie plate or pan, spreads parchment paper, greases that, and spoons in batter.  When pan is removed from oven, pop out parchment paper, peel off cookies, cut cookies.  Voila, she says.  Without parchment paper, you have to be careful to cut while still warm or it will take a jackhammer to remove from pan.  I continue to use the non-parchment method because that’s what I’m used to.  I always bake in a pie plate because I like the look of the wedges.