Pumpkin Seed Cookies

American cookbooks are a good source of sweet pumpkin recipes-pies, puddings, meringues, soufflés and ice-creams, not to mention cookies. This one is based on a recipe from a book called The Joy of Cooking. I have gradually changed almost every ingredient in it but still followed the same basic method.

Ingredients

  • 12 oz / 340 g golden syrup
  • 4 oz / 110 g unsalted butter
  • generous oz / 125 g plain flour, sifted
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3–4 oz / 85–110 g toasted pumpkin seeds

Method

In a small, heavy saucepan, boil the syrup and butter together for 30 seconds or so, and remove from the heat. Tip in half the flour and the salt, and beat vigorously until there are no lumps. Add the remaining flour, and beat the mixture until it is smooth and leaves the side of the pan. Stir in the pumpkin seeds. Drop heaped teaspoonfuls of the mixture on to two well-greased baking sheets. Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C / 350°F / Mark 4 for 12–15 minutes. The cookies will be soft when you transfer them to a rack but will firm up as they cool.

Variations

Golden syrup can be replaced with molasses, maple syrup or thick syrup made of muscovado sugar.

Replace the pumpkin seeds, a couple of tablespoons of flour and a little of the butter with peanut butter, smooth or crunchy, and peanut butter addicts will be your friends for life.

Use hazelnut or walnut oil in place of some of the butter, and some chopped hazelnuts or walnuts for very elegant biscuits.

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