I’ve loved thumbprints since I was a kid. Any recipe that allows me to jam my thumb into cookie dough and fill it with jam is a winner in my books.
Today, I have a vegan and gluten-free version to add to my growing thumbprint recipe collection. This time, I set my heart on making a thumbprint with a lovely raspberry almond flavour using almonds, almond butter, almond extract, and raspberry jam as the feature ingredients. They turned out fantastic – lightly sweet, with a buttery almond flavour and pop of sweet raspberry goodness. If you’re a fan of peanut butter and jam, you will love this “grown-up” version.
Yield: 18 cookies
1 1/3 cups raw almonds, processed into almond meal (about 1.5 cups almond meal)
1/4 cup brown rice flour
2 tbsp ground flax
1/4 tsp and 1/8 tsp fine grain sea salt
1 tsp aluminum-free baking powder
1/2 cup raw almond butter (see note)
1/4 cup and 3 tbsp pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp almond extract
5-6 tbsp raspberry jam
approx 1/3 cup shredded coconut, for rolling
1. Preheat oven to 350F and spray a large baking sheet with oil, use a silpat mat, or line with parchment paper.
2. If making almond meal, place raw almonds into a high-speed blender. Process on high speed until a fine crumb, making sure not to process too long or the oils will release. Alternatively, you can use store bought almond meal.
3. In a large bowl, whisk the dry ingredients (almond meal, rice flour, ground flax, salt, and baking powder). Use your fingers to break up any clumps of the almond meal. In a smaller bowl, mix together the almond butter, maple syrup, and almond extract. Add wet mixture to dry mixture and stir until combined.
4. Shape dough into balls (about 1.5 tbsp). If dough is too sticky, place in the fridge for 15-20 minutes to firm up.
5. Roll balls in coconut. Place balls of dough about 1.5 to 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. With your thumb, press into the middle of the ball and shape a small well with your fingers. Add 1 tsp of jam into each well.
6. Bake at 350F for 10-12 minutes, watching closely after 9 minutes. I baked mine for 11.5 minutes. Cool on sheet for 5 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack. Channel your inner grandma and enjoy with hot tea!
Notes: If making these completely gluten-free be sure to check all your ingredients to ensure they are certified gluten-free. The almond butter I used is very “drippy” so I don’t suggest using firm nut butter here. If you do, you may have to add some oil to the mixture. You can also roll the balls in chopped nuts instead of coconut.
Angela Liddon is the creator of Oh She Glows — an inspiring, healthy vegan recipe website — and one of Chatelaine’s Women of the Year 2011. Angela’s passion for healthy vegan food is contagious and she’s eager to show others that vegan (and often gluten-free) food can blow your taste buds away.