This recipe will walk you through a traditional cookie process – transforming a ‘fermented’ honey dough into festive cookies and also guide you through some precious moments of reflection during the often busy weeks of holiday preparation.
In order to bake these cookies, you’ll need a previously-prepared dough. You can find instructions for that here.
Go get your ‘fermented’ dough (it doesn’t matter if it’s had a few day or a few months maturing – all timescales will work) and let’s get to transforming your honey and oat dough into some slow spiced honey & oat cookies!
Why are these called ‘Slow’ Cookies?
Whilst developing the recipe for these cookies, I was aware that so much of the process was slow and manual. To start with this seemed like a negative: Doesn’t the whole world want everything, including recipes, to be ‘quick and easy’?
But soon I could feel how much I was enjoying the process because I had to slow down. And seeing that I was creating a festive treat, my mind turned to the holidays; I started dreaming of how I wanted my Christmas to be.
The cookies, slow as they are, were gifting me a few moments of meditation! Time when I could step outside the often frenetic Christmas build-up and revisit my deepest values.
So much about the festive season can push us into rushing. These cookies are an antidote to that; a slow process and one during which we have moments to focus in on our own heartfelt desires for the holidays.
I’ll hand hold you through this; at the end you’ll not only have 16 delicious cookies but also be much clearer and focused on giving yourself and your family a wonderful Christmas, those intentions brought forth during the process and literally baked in to your honey and oat spiced treats.
Slow Spiced Honey & Oat ‘Fermented’ Cookies
Will use half your dough and make 16 cookies
What you’ll need:
1/2 the original dough (this is around 220g)
Spices, I use 1 tsp ginger and cinnamon
Baking powder 5g (about 1tbsp)
Remember UK tsp and tbsp are slightly bigger than US ones, so for every 1 UK tsp/tbsp indicated here you’ll need 1.2 of the US equivalent.
23g butter, chopped
Circular cutter 6cm/2.5inch
This is a slow process to be lingered over, so you might want to make yourself a cup of tea too!
- Chop your original dough in half (you’ll end up with about 220g of dough).
- Put the dough into a bowl and break it up into small breadcrumb-sized pieces with fingers.
Slow opportunity #1!
Here’s your first opportunity to think about how you want your festivities to be. Meditate on them as your fingers work (it’ll take 5-10 minutes to break up your dough).
What’s important to you over the holidays?
What do you value and what do you want to show up?
Is it peace, is it meeting people, is it spirituality, is it joy, is it slowness?
How do you want to feel?
How do you want people around you to feel?
What do you want to be able to say was true of your holidays when you look back on them?
The more you can get clear and detailed on this, the more it’ll help inform all your choices and decisions.
- Once your dough is broken up into small breadcrumb pieces, mix in the salt, baking powder and spices.
- Add the chopped butter and break it up/work it in to the crumbs using your fingers.
Slow opportunity number 2!
Take your time. Think back to your desires for the festive season.
How are you going to enable those wishes to come to fruition?
What do you need to do less of?
What do you need to do more of?
What do you need to remember?
How are you going to remember that? Do you need to write it down/draw it/set yourself reminders/commit to a festive season ‘practice’?
It can help to write this all out. Not now, but once you fingers are clean! Or you could set up a voice recorder and talk into it as you mix.
- Once the butter is broken up and worked in well, bring the mix together into a ball.
- Roll it out on a floured board until it’s 4-5 mm thick and cut your cookies out.
- Place the cookies onto a baking sheet, squeeze the left over dough into another ball and do the process again (and potentially again) until you have used up all the dough. You should have around 16 cookies.
- Bake them. This is the only part of the process that is quick – you will need to pay attention to the cookies in the oven to make sure that they don’t burn. At 170C/340F my cookies take around 7 minutes.
- Remove the cookies to a wire cooling rack using a wide spatula. Be careful whilst you’re doing this – at this stage they are still soft and will bend/break easily.
Once they have cooled, the cookies are ready to eat! If you’d like to spend more time with them you can decorate them with melted chocolate and orange zest. Mine are decorated with home-made bean-to-bar chocolate; you can find out how to make this in my course here.
Keep the cookies in an airtight container, they are good for a week (though I’m sure they won’t last that long!).