Saturday, 6 February 2021

Macau Almond Cookies (Gluten Free Cookies)

 For well-nigh 5 years, I have been away from my blog, but cooking has always been my passion, not to say that I am a foodie or that sort, but I believe cooking is one of our many survival skills. The pandemic that hit us recently has taught us the value of cooking at home, it's really a stress buster. Recently, I came across traditional Chinese Macau Almond Cookies, typically popular in Macau an island in Hong Kong. This cookies originated from Canton, China , but prominently sold by hawkers everywhere in Macau. Traditionally, it is baked under the blazing charcoal fire so the cookies have smoky and nutty texture that is achieved by adding almond meal and mung bean flour. It's surprising how amalgamation of a few simple ingredients could contribute to the best effect of the cookies. I have to warn you that this is not your typical buttery, crispy or chewy cookies, but different type of crunchy, dry and gluten free cookies. The best part of this cookies will be the mooncake pattern mould that we use here. I am planning to try different types of Macau Almond cookies recipes to find the best one. This is something that I have tried yesterday at home. We all loved it for it's uniqueness and history.


Macau Almond Cookies



INGREDIENTS :

Salted butter - 25 g - 35g

Raw almonds - 55g

Mung bean flour -50g

Brown caster sugar - 30g

Water - 1 tsp


METHOD:

1. Mix brown sugar and a teaspoon of water in a small bowl to form honey sort of syrup.



2. After that add room temperature salted butter to this concoction and mix till it is a bit pale in color. 




3. Then, blanch the almonds in hot water to remove their skins. The almonds are lightly pan toasted. When you are toasting almonds in a pan, ensure to keep the flame low as you don't want to burn them. Now, grind the toasted almonds into fine powder by pulsing them from time to time. Don't attempt to grind the almonds for a long time because it will tend to become paste. 

toasted almonds 


Almond powder/almond meal


4. Now combine almond meal, mung bean flour into the butter sugar paste. Mix well with your hands. You can buy mung bean flour from the Chinese grocery shop or any Asian or Indian store. I don't believe in making my own as it is time consuming. 
Mung Bean flour packet

Mung Bean flour


5. For shaping the cookies, you will need a mooncake mould. You take a clump of the crumbly mixture and press it with your one hand and add the mixture into the mould. Press the mixture well and give the mould a hard tap on the board to remove cookies easily. I had a difficult time here as it was my first time making these cookies. Mine was breaking into pieces so I intuitively added little bit of butter and tiny drops of water to gather the crumbs together by hand. That's why the amount of butter, I suggested here is around 25 to 35 g. 

Mooncake cookie mould

6. Lay the cookies on a baking tray that is slightly buttered. Preheat your oven to 120 degree celcius for 5 minutes.

7. Bake the cookies at 110 degree celcius for 30 - 40 minutes depending on the thickness of the cookies.

8. My end result was not perfect, but the taste was good. Next time, I would like to make it better. I hope you would try these cookies in your kitchen. Till, then I will post other recipes. 


Thank you.

Abby




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