05 April 2011

Orange Cardamom Cookies

I scored some of the most fresh, delicious, organic ground cardamom today at my local farmer's market and, I'll be honest, I had no idea what to do with it. I just knew that is smelled amazing and I had to have it. I'm really lucky to have such a great resource for fresh spices so close to home. I am well and truly spoiled and I can't bring myself to buy spices from the grocery store anymore. Anyway, back to the cardamom. So, I get it home and send distress calls to friends and family asking what the hell to use it for. Almost everyone said to either make chai or some spice cookies. I've  never had a spice cookie, so I thought maybe I'd give it a shot.

Because the cardamom has a citrusy scent, I decided to add some orange to complement it. And, my dears, it was magnificent. So, I have decided to share the magic with you. You may thank me anytime. These cookies are not only vegan, they are amazing! I had to force myself to stop eating them. I suppose you may hate them, and then I am left to assume that you are possibly deranged. Or maybe you can't follow a simple recipe. Whatever.

Because I despise rolling out cookies, I decided to roll these into balls by hand and smoosh them down into sugar, making them circular-ish. Easy and no rolling pin necessary. These won't spread much at all, so you can put them about an inch apart on your baking sheet without too much fear. The finished product is sort of like a sort of puffy, chewy sugar cookie with personality. As for the flour, I used about half whole wheat pastry flour and half unbleached all-purpose and it worked perfectly. You could use just plain ole flour if you want, but I'm thinking next time I'll be using all ww pastry. Enough talk. On to the recipe!

Makes about 20 1-inch cookie balls

  • 1/2 cup plus 2 TB all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 4 TB Earth Balance, room temperature (or use other vegan butter)
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 egg replacer (I use Ener-G, which is 1 TB water mixed with 3/4 tsp powder)
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 2 TB sugar to smoosh the tops of the cookies into
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a cookie sheet (I use silicone baking mat).
  2. In a small mixing bowl, sift together the flours, cream of tartar and baking soda.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter, cardamom, salt, and brown sugar. Once combined, beat in the egg replacement, vanilla and orange zest.
  4. Add the flour to the wet bowl and combine until no dry spots can be seen. With my mixer, it turned into a bunch of pebble sized dough bits. 
  5. Put the regular sugar onto a small saucer. Then, roll the dough into 1-inch balls. One by one, you want to gently smoosh the cookie ball down into the sugar. This will coat the top of the cookie in sugar and make them into 1/4 to 1/3-inch high discs. Place the cookies on the sheet at least 1 inch apart.
  6. Bake 10-11 minutes. Then remove and let set on cookie sheet for 4-5 minutes. Once they have set, you can then put them on a cooling rack. I dare you to not eat 5 before they cool off.


  1. Orange & Cardamom are such a great pair. And I totally love cookies with sugar smooshed (that's a culinary term, right?) into the top! I hope you win the contest!

  2. Yum, they're so good! Love the combo of cardamom and orange. Next time I'm going to quadruple the batch. Thanks for the recipe :)