I finally got a box of roasted cocoa nibs, which I've been meaning to try for some time now. But when I got them home and "nibbed" on some, I realized that this wasn't something I particularly wanted to snack on straight from the box. They're good and bitter, and also nut-like in texture, and linger on the tongue to the point of requiring a serious palette cleanser! My pack of Wriggley's Spearmint was my savior.
After contemplating the fact that I had just spent 7 bucks on this gourmet treat, I was determined to find a good use for them. I found this recipe from the Alice Medrich's Bittersweet, and "vegspun" it by simply swapping Earth Balance for the butter.
The result was a cross between a shortbread and a biscotti, with a great almond flavor and crunch which definitely complimented the almost coffee-like flavor of the nibs. As soon as the aroma filled the room, everyone in the house was drawn to the kitchen like the cookie-eating zombies that they are. Must...have...cookie!
3/4 C. almonds
1 C. plus 2 T. all-purpose flour
2/3 C. sugar
1/4 t. salt
6 T. Earth Balance Buttery Sticks, cut into chunks
2 T. water
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/8 tsp. almond extract
1/4 C. roasted cocoa nibs
Proccess the almonds, flour, sugar, and salt until the almonds are reduced to a fine meal. Add the Earth Balance and pulse until it looks crumbly. Combine the water, vanilla, and almond extract in a small bowl, then add and pulse just until just incorporated. Add the cocoa nibs and pulse a few more times to mix in evenly.
Turn out the dough onto a large sheet of foil and press it together with your hands to form a 6 x 9 inch rectangle, that's about a 1/2 inch thick. Wrap it up in the foil tightly and refrigerate on a flat surface until the dough is nice and firm (an hour or two, or more). Unwrap and cut into thin strips (about 1/4" thick). Carefully transfer the delicate strips to a prepared cookie sheet about an inch apart, and bake for 12-14 minutes at 350 degrees, or until edges are golden.
Makes about 30, 6-inch sticks