Candy coated fennel seeds, or Mukhwas, are commonly served after a meal at Indian restaurants, and are the star of these cookies.
These slightly crunchy Fennel Seed cookies are a perfect vehicle for those little candies, second only to eating them straight from the bag, of course. If you cannot locate these candies, which are available at Indian markets and online, than any type of sprinkle will do as well, as regular dried fennel seeds are used in the dough and the colorful seeds simply decorate the tops of the cookies.
- 1 tablespoon flax seed meal (ground flax seeds)
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 cup vegan margarine
- 1 cup organic granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 cup chickpea flour (gram flour/ besan)
- 1/4 cup candy coated fennel seeds
- Optional: 1/4 cup vegan sprinkles for decorating
Preheat your oven to 400 F and line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. In a very small bowl, whisk together the flaxseed meal and 2 tablespoons water and allow to rest until gelled, about 5 minutes.
In a large bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the vegan margarine, granulated sugar, and vanilla extract and then slowly stir in the prepared flaxseed meal. (You can also make this recipe by hand, but it will take a bit of elbow grease to get the mixture to come together. Be sure to stir well until a stiff dough forms, about 100 strokes.)
In a separate bowl, sift together the all purpose flour and the chickpea flour until well combined. Using an electric mixer, mix on medium-low speed with creamed margarine mixture until stiff dough forms.
Pat the dough into a disk and then wrap in plastic wrap or parchment paper and chill in the freezer for about 15 to 20 minutes. or until very cold. You can also chill the dough in the fridge for about 2 to 3 hours if you aren't in a rush.
Prepare a flat clean surface by dusting lightly with either chickpea or all purpose flour. Roll out the chilled dough out onto lightly floured surface until the dough is about 1/4-1/2 inch thick. Cut out cookies using your favorite shaped cookie cutters. I find that simple geometric shapes work best with this dough.
Decorate the cut out cookies with the candy coated fennel seeds and other vegan sprinkles if desired. Place the cookies about 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet and onto the middle rack of your oven.
Bake in preheated oven for 7 to 8 minutes, or until lightly golden brown and fragrant. Less cooking time will be needed for thinner cookies.
Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.