Coconut Carrot Chai Cookies

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Often times, I've found one of the best way to say a heartfelt "thank you" is giving something good to eat. My favorite go-to is a baked treat. This summer, I met with the warm and charismatic Jack Petrash, author of Understanding Waldorf Education and teacher at the Washington Waldorf School. He took time out of his busy summer schedule to talk with me about Waldorf Teacher Training, show me around the school and loaned me a book from WWS's library under his name.

This recipe appeared from one of my favorite sources, Heidi Swanson's 101 Cookbooks. At first glance, these cookies seemed a bit bland. But after a closer look (and taste) I realized they're anything but. The ginger carrot combination had surprising depth and spicy heat. And the addition of cardamon puts them over the top, reminiscent of a warm, deep, aromatic chai. They also turned out to be a perfect thank you cookie.

I've been thinking of doing a cookie of the month. Cookies don't get the attention they deserve anymore. They're so simple, humble even, in their bite-sized goodness and come in countless shapes, sizes and flavors. They also can have wonderful cultural significance, rich not just with flavor but stories and ritual. It's high time I do a little more exploration of these timeless treasures!


Adopted from 101 Cookbooks, Oatmeal Carrot Cookies

1 cup whole wheat pastry or regular flour 1 teaspoon baking powder scant 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt 1 cup rolled oats 2/3 cup shredded, unsweetened coconut 1 cup shredded carrots 1/2 cup real maple syrup, room temperature 1/2 cup unrefined (fragrant) coconut oil, warmed until just melted 1-2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamon

Preheat oven to 375F degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, cardamon, salt, and oats. Add the shredded coconut and carrots. In a separate smaller bowl use a whisk to combine the room temperature maple syrup, coconut oil, and ginger. Add this to the flour mixture and stir until just combined.

Drop onto prepared baking sheets, one level tablespoonful at a time, leaving about 2 inches between each cookie. Bake in the top 1/3 of the oven for 10 - 12 minutes or until the cookies are golden on top and bottom.

Makes about 2 1/2 dozen cookies.