Mesquite Cacao-Butter Cookies
by Libby Jennison
I’m just so pleased with the way these turned out. These are as beautiful as they sound! The mesquite powder has a sweet, chocolatey caramel flavor to it and the cacao butter adds that characteristic richness. Nothing but excessive niceness; you might think about having a light lunch.
I say if you are going to indulge, a no-stops, homemade confection is the way to go. You just cannot control the ingredients or intentions of those that make store bought items. Even seemingly healthful things, like almond milks, are no more than processed foods. Forgo them for the real thing. For some, that might mean soaking almonds and blending them into a delicious almond milk, and for others, it might mean finding a local dairy that sells their raw milk “for pet consumption only” (this is the only lawful way of selling raw milk to consumers in the state of Florida…. which is complete balderdash… but that is another post entirely).
I love the robin’s blue shells~ pure novelty!
In addition to raw milk, I also used some eggs from Navera Farms. They are unpasteurized and as true to pasture raised as I will get here in Jacksonville short of getting a few from a friend. The deep, rich yellow of the yolk usually will give away clues as to what the chickens’ diet was and their stress levels, but these days even factory farmers have suspect ways of adding things to their feed to keep their yolk a satisfying gold. I can only hope that these yolks came by their impressive color naturally. Look at those beauties!
My niece, Carys, was lots of help in the kitchen, keeping good spirits and adding to the baking cheer. SHe had started off in the Maya wrap, but before I could even melt the butters, she had had enough. I propped her up in her little seat so she could watch.
1 cup of Einkhorn flour (this particular strain of wheat has never been hybridized or modified)
1 cup oat flour
1 cup mesquite powder/flour
1 teas baking soda
1 teas baking powder
2 cups sugar (I prefer the Repunzel brand as it is unrefined and unbleached)
1/2 stick of butter, melted
4 oz cacao butter, melted
1/2 c raw cacao
2 capfuls of vanilla, approximation is fine
3 farm fresh eggs
1/4 cup of milk
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Begin by mixing the dry ingredients together in a bowl. That includes all three flours, the baking soda and powder, and the salt. Mixing well with a whisk to ensure they are evenly combined. Set aside. Next, crack the three eggs into a large mixing bowl. Add the melted butters, the vanilla, and the sugar and stir with a spoon. Once well mixed, add the cacao. Incorporate the dry ingredients a cup or so at a time. No need to be totally accurate with your measurements. Lastly, if the dough is still dry, as mine was, add the milk a tablespoon at a time until it is wet and comes together.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Spoon the dough onto the parchment in about two to two and a half tablespoon amounts. Bake for 9 minutes, no more! They will come out looking puffy and wet looking. You will think you’ve failed and they’ve come out wrong. But you haven’t! Let them cool on the parchment for at least 30 minutes before trying your first bite. They will begin to fall and only get better as they cool. The results have a slight tooth to them on the outside, but are rich and chewy on the inside.
By the end of it all, Carys and I shared milk and cookies… well, she had her mommy’s milk, and I had a cookie. It sent her into a milk-coma and she fell fast asleep. I washed up, and she dreamt on.