I love cherries. I love the flavor of almond. This cookie combines the two flavors. They are super duper easy to whip up and bake in 10 minutes flat. I like that they hold their plump, chewy shape that makes you want to bite right into one.
I adapted this recipe from one I found at Eating Well, and while I didn't use any sugar substitutes, I didn't feel I needed to since the recipe really didn't call for much sugar to begin with. With good ingredients like almonds and wheat flour they pass as a "healthified snack" in my house. The flavor is mild but delicious and not too sweet (if you like a real sweet cookie, this one is not for you). Each cookie has under 100 calories.
Cherry Almond Cookies
1/3 c. whole natural almonds
1/3 c. granulated sugar
2/3 c. coarsely chopped dried cherries (can sub. with dried cranberries or blueberries)
2/3 c. white whole wheat flour
2 T. natural, unsweetened applesauce
2 egg whites
1/2 t. pure vanilla extract
1/2 t. pure almond extract
dash of salt (optional)
1. In a food processor, pulse the almonds and sugar until you have a coarse coarse texture and the almonds are ground small enough to hold the cookie together nicely. Pour into a larger mixing bowl. In the processor, add the dried fruit and pulse a few times to chop it up.
2. To the almond mixture, add the chopped dried cherries and flour and mix well. To that, add the applesauce, egg whites, extracts and salt. Mix well with a wooden spoon or your hand until the mixture forms together.
3. With a large cookie scoop, shape the dough into balls and lay on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, or until bottoms are golden and tops are just slightly so. Remove to a cooling rack.
Almonds are so good for you (if they aren't coated in sugar or salt). They are one of my favorite snacks though I have to count them out or I'll eat too many. Here are a few facts about the superfood, almonds:
-packed with nutrients including fiber, riboflavin, magnesium, iron, calcium and vitamin E.
-A handful of almonds or other healthy nut each day may reduce your risk of heart disease
-great source of plant protein which is good for someone like myself, who is not a big meat eater.