"Pink in the Middle" Lemon Cashew Cookies for Mothers Day (+ a lesson in natural food dyes).
By Amy Crawford
Aside from sharing a very yum cookies recipe with you today, we are also giving you a lesson in how to dye food naturally, to get the kids EVEN MORE excited to be baking for their mums on Mother's Day. Transforming ingredients into vibrant hues really is simple with the aid of veggie juice.
Why is it important that we consider natural food dye? Well, conventional (artificial) food dyes are mostly petroleum based and have been linked to food sensitivities, skin rashes and irritations (think eczema) and hyperactivity in children.
That said, I whipped up this table for you to refer to next time. These natural ingredients will assist you in dying lightly coloured ingredients into a wonderful rainbow.
|Desired Colour||Natural Dye Ingredient|
|Pink||Beet juice, pomegranate juice, beet powder|
|Orange||Carrot juice, paprika, carrot powder|
|Yellow||Fresh or juiced turmeric, saffron|
|Green||Liquid chlorophyll, matcha powder, parsley juice, spinach powder|
|Blue||Red cabbage juice|
|Purple||Purple sweet potatoes, purple carrots, blueberry juice, maqui berry powder|
|Brown||Espresso, cacao powder, cinnamon|
|Black||Activated charcoal, squid ink, black cacao powder|
You will need:
1 1/2 cups cashews, ground to meal
1 1/2 cup arrowroot/tapioca flour (plus a little extra for rolling)
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup of rice malt or maple syrup
1 1/2 tablespoons beet juice
Zest of a whole large lemon
A good pinch of Himalayan or Celtic sea salt
Combine all ingredients with the exception of the beet juice in a mixing bowl. Scoop out 1/3 of the mix and place into a separate mixing bowl. Add the beet juice, combine well to ensure all of the batter turns pink.
Place both bowls of batter in the fridge for 20 minutes to firm. If it is too sticky to roll, pop it back in until it's ready.
Lay a rectangular sheet of baking paper on your kitchen bench. Turn the pink dough onto the plastic wrap and roll into a long cylinder of approximately 25 cm long.
Lay another rectangular sheet of paper onto the bench and turn the plain dough onto the plastic wrap. Cover with another sheet of plastic and use a wooden rolling pin to roll it into a rectangle, to the same length as your pink log.
Place both the pink and the plain dough into the fridge for another 10-15 minutes, or until firm and malleable.
Preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius and line a baking tray with baking paper.
Remove from fridge. Place the pink log of dough on top of the plain sheet of dough. Roll the plain sheet around the pink log, pressing firmly along the edges where they meet to even out the surface.
Use a sharp knife to cut the cylinder into slices, just less than 1cm. Lay the slices onto the prepared baking tray. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool. The biscuits will firm further as they cool.
If, after making these, you discover your kids love being in the kitchen with you, you may like to explore the 25 healthy recipes we've included in our eBook 'Nourishing Kids'. It's just $12.95 and you can download it direct to your computer or device here.
Happy Mother's Day Mums!