We’re back for another Improv Challenge, and this month stretched my culinary horizons to use an ingredient I’ve never cooked or baked with before. We are all whipping up recipes using Orange and Cardamom. For some reason, when I thought about these two ingredients, my mind immediately settled on cookies. So today I am bringing you these crisp and citrusy cookies that will will your home with the flavors and scents of the holidays – Orange & Cardamom Coco-Doodles (Coconutty Snickerdoodles).
Awhile back I was perusing some #SundaySupper posts when I saw the Slow Cooker Butter Chicken from Blueberries & Blessings (then known as The Meltaways), and I really want to make it, especially when we had a #SundaySupper event where we were to recreate a previous #SundaySupper recipe that caught our eye. Well, Pam’s recipe called for cardamom pods. My grocery store carried them, but it was a ginormous bag for about $10. Since I hadn’t ventured into Indian cuisine all that much and already had to buy curry powder and garam masala, I figured I’d check out the ground spiced, since I knew I had seen other recipes that called for it, so maybe it might get used. Yeah, that teensy weeny jar was around $15. Ugh! Forget it – that garam masala already had cardamom in it. Done and done!
Then I’ve been using the Pumpkin Pie Spice recipe from How Sweet It Is as my go-to spice mixture for everything from my Pumpkin Pie to my Pumpkin Cheesecake Tart to my Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Smoothie. Except that pinch of cardamom it calls for – I just left it out.
Well when I saw this month’s Improv Challenge ingredients, I knew I couldn’t get by with just leaving it out. I already stretched the rules a bit with my cookie cups for the cake and frosting theme. Gonna be honest, not sure the cardamom is the make or break in this recipe, but it did add a bit of exotic flair when combined with cinnamon. But regardless, I am so glad that Kristen, our lovely hostess of the Improv Challenge, got me flexing my culinary muscles on this one. If she hadn’t picked these two ingredients, I might never have bought cardamom, and then never would have come up with these amazing cookies.
If you love the classic Snickerdoodle, then you will love this slightly exotic twist on the original. I already had coco-fied Snickerdoodles, so the addition of this month’s theme ingredients just seems like a natural pairing to the hint of coconut in my Coco-Doodles.
It totally was! I like my Snickerdoodles crisp, and while these retained their perfect crispiness, they were, dare I say, juicy. And the smell in my kitchen while they were baking was just so enticing and festive!
With the addition of coconut oil and the slightly juicy orange zest, this dough was a little softer than my original Snickerdoodle cookie dough, so I do recommend chilling it in the fridge and not flattening down the dough balls other that maybe the slightest bit, since they will spread on their own. Also, in my Coco-Doodle recipe, I called for subbing in 1/4 c coconut flour, which I did not do this time since dummy me forgot I was storing it in my freezer, but I think that would also help since it will absorb more of the moisture.
And I’ll be honest with you, if you don’t want to shell out the cash for the cardamom, I’m sure that using just cinnamon will still product an incredibly delicious cookie. And if you don’t have coconut oil, stick with the original shortening/butter combo, or all butter. If you don’t want to roll them in the coconut and spice mixture, just go with the classic cinnamon sugar. It’s all good.
But seriously, whatever you do, try adding orange zest to your Snickerdoodles! I actually want to try adding it to more classic cookies – orange chocolate chip, citrusy snowballs, an even orange sugar cookies bars would all be fabulous. I think citrus and spice are such classic holiday flavors and aromas, so these will certainly be a welcome new addition to your Christmas cookie platter! These are in my freezer, and I can’t wait to share with my family and friends.
As I mentioned, this recipe is part of the Improv Challenge, which is a blog hop hosted by Kristen of Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker. A theme is given, which is two assigned ingredients. Then it is up to the participating bloggers to let the creative juices flow, and see what they can come up with. Then on the third Thursday of the month, we will all publish our new recipes based on the theme. This month’s theme – orange & cardamom. If you are have a blog and would like to join us, click on the picture to the below to learn more. If you are new to my blog, finding me because you have been following the Improv Challenge, then WELCOME!
Check out the links at the bottom of this post to more great Orange & Cardamom Recipes! I can’t wait to see what everyone has come up with!
Do you have any awesome recipes to share that call for cardamom? I have a whole jar now!
- 2¾ cups all-purpose (optional – substitute ¼ c all-purpose flour with coconut flour)
- 2 t cream of tartar
- 1 t baking soda
- ¼ t salt
- 1½ c sugar
- ½ c butter or margarine, softened
- ½ c coconut oil (or shortening)
- 2 eggs
- zest of one orange (about 1 T)
- 1 c sweetened coconut flakes
- 2 t ground cinnamon
- 1 t ground cardamom
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Sift together into a medium bowl the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. Set bowl aside.
- In a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, cream together the butter, coconut oil, and sugar.
- Add the eggs one at a time, and then the orange zest, and mix thoroughly.
- Add the flour mixture, and mix until a dough forms.
- Using a food processor or Magic Bullet, process the coconut until it is almost a moist powder. Mix in a small bowl with with cinnamon and cardamom.
- Place dough in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, or until firm.
- Shape dough into approximately 1 inch balls (I use a dough scoop), roll in the coconut and spice mixture, and place 2 inches apart on a cookie sheet.
- Pat each dough ball down very slightly.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until set.
- Cool for a couple of minutes on the cookie sheet, then remove to racks to cool completely.
Like orange? You’ll love these from me…
- Dark Chocolate, Orange & Pistachio Greek Yogurt Cups
- Orange Roasted Chickpea & Spiced Almond Salad with Sherry Citrus Vinaigrette
- Sage Cornbread Muffins with Cranberry Orange Butter
Plus a few from my friends…
- Gluten-Free Orange Rolls from Flippin’ Delicious
- Orange Spiced Cashews from Hip Foodie Mom
- Orange Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash with Pecans from Citronlimette
And make sure you check out what the rest of the Improv-ers have cooking or baking…