Monday, 24 February 2014

Apple and Cinnamon Cookies

I'm in a bit of a baking phase at the moment.  Steve is playing cricket on a Sunday afternoon which normally gives me a couple of hours to potter around and experiment in the kitchen.  One such Sunday after a bit of a mooch I found I had some apples in our fruit basket that were looking a little sorry for themselves so decided to turn them into apple cookies.
These are probably a little more suited to autumn than this strange winter-spring we seem to be in at the moment but if you are anything like me, you will normally have some apples lying around that need using up and this is a wonderful way to re-vitalise apples that are about to turn.

They are soft and chewy and only slightly sweet; great for people who don't want to be on a sugar high for the rest of the day!
I love them for elevenses at my desk in the office (I feel like a hobbit!) with a cup of coffee.  The porridge oats give that little energy burst I need to tide me through until lunch and they are the perfect treat if you are trying to curry favour with your work colleagues!  I know it's purely psychological but the fact that they are packed full of apples makes them feel positively virtuous as well - a complete myth but I've always been a fan of self-delusion.

They don't keep for long, so you really want to eat them within 24 hours of baking as long as they have been kept in a air tight container.  If you make them on a Saturday I can't guarantee you would be able to hand them around the office on a Monday!  Of course this could simply be due to the fact that they have all been eaten...
The recipe below will yield about 15-20 biscuits roughly the size of a hobnob.


125g unsalted butter at room temperature
95g brown sugar plus extra for sprinkling
1 egg
130g plain flour
130g porridge oats
1/4 tsp baking powder
2 apples, 1 peeled and chopped, 1 thinly sliced with the skin on
4 tsp Cinnamon powder
Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease 2 large baking trays.
Cream the butter and the sugar, add the egg and beat well.

Mix in the flour, oats, cinnamon, baking powder and chopped apple to make a sticky dough.

Divide the dough up and roll into balls (you may find it easier to do this with wet or lightly oiled hands) and spread the balls about an inch apart on the baking tray.

Press down the centre of each to flatten it out slightly and place a slice of apple on the top of each ball.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until the biscuits are golden, remove and cool.
I imagine they would be lovely with other dried fruit as well, such as banana or sultanas.  If you experiment, let me know how it goes!  Also try drizzling honey over the top of each biscuit for the last 5 minutes of baking, adding ground cassia or nutmeg or allspice, maybe a bit of ground ginger at Christmas time, go really decadent and coat it in smooth caramel toffee; the possibilities are endless!

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