Quinoa And M&M Cookie Dough + Quinoa Cookies

Quinoa And M&M Cookie Dough
 
A great, crumbly cookie dough has many lives. First there is the obvious cookie. Then it dreams of being a golden crumble. Sometimes it fantasizes about being a chic truffle coated in glorious chocolate. On hot days it gets swirled through snowy white vanilla ice cream. Festivities see it layered in large glass bowls to jazz up a boring trifle. On cool days to gets toasted golden in a pan and hops onto your milk and cereal. But mostly, it gets eaten with a spoon and provides immeasurable joy. This is the story of that cookie dough.
 
Quinoa And M&M Cookie Dough
 
Four year olds are clever. Much more than you would give them credit for. One day, Gummi Bear who happens to be that four year old I am talking about, asked for a bowl of M&Ms. I raised my eyebrow, cocked my head and said "What for?". He raised one of his eyebrows, cocked his head and said "To Eat Mum!". Two thoughts streaked across my mind in that moment. First, that I was looking into a mirror. And second, where on earth did he get the bright idea that if he asks for a bowl of M&M’s to eat, I was going to comply.
 
Quinoa And M&M Cookie Dough + Quinoa Cookies
 
"You know you are not allowed to eat candy, especially during the week and definitely not in a bowl!" I said. "Is it the weekend?" he asked hopefully. "No sweetie", I said and he hung his head dolefully and with a great big pout on his face, walked away. Five minutes later he was back. "Mum, can you bake me some healthy breakfast cookies?" he asked with eyes so wide, I melted. "Now that’s more like it", I thought. "Yes, I can honey." "Can you put some oats in it?" he continued. "Yes, sweetheart." "And some cereal?" he asked. "Yes." I smiled. He smiled and started walking away. Just as I turned to get the bowl from the shelf, he said "Mum, could you also stir some M&Ms in the cookies …. pleeeeaaase??" Ingenius, I tell you. That is what four year olds are.
 
Quinoa Cookie Dough Crumbs
 
So I mixed together some healthy and some not so healthy ingredients together to get a bowl of what would become our favourite cookie dough. Even I had a go at it with a spoon, something I never do. Ever! And although I baked most of the dough into cookies which the boys adored, I used it in ways I have never used cookie dough before. I toasted it lightly in the pan and used it to top breakfast cereal. I also used the toasted  cookie dough to make cookie dough ice cream and as a crumble for stewed apples. 
 
Quinoa Cookies
 
Food Styling, Prop And Photography Alert – Photography surface – Old discarded timber palette. Bag of mini M&Ms from the supermarket. White paper doilies – $2 for 10 from the Dollar Shop. Scrabble Tiles from our family board game box. Beige latte cups – $1 from Target. Black wire tray – $34.95 from Bed Bath & Table. Pink doily trim vintage bowls – $2 each from Hot Dollar.
 
Quinoa Cookies & Dough
 
 
 

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QUINOA AND M&M COOKIE DOUGH 

Preparation Time – 10 minutes
Makes – Enough for 16 cookies
 

 

Ingredients

125g butter, chopped, softened
2/3 cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 1/4 cups self-raising flour
1 tablespoon milk
1 cup quinoa flakes
1/4 cup rolled oats
2/3 cup mini M&Ms
 

Method

Melt butter in a microwave (30 seconds at 1100W) or on the stovetop (a few minutes on low heat) until just melted. In a large bowl, combine melted butter and all the other ingredients. With a wooden spoon, mix gently to combine well. Rub the mixture gently with your fingertips for 2-3 minutes until it resembles breadcrumbs.
 
 

My Notes

The dough is crumbly, colourful and absolutely beautiful to look at. It has a healthy dose of quinoa and oats. It has a slightly nutty taste due to the quinoa which works well because it is nut-free. If you would like to make a gluten free version, skip the flour and substitute it with almond meal. The dough keeps well in the fridge for a few days because it has no eggs. 
 

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QUINOA AND M&M COOKIES 

Preparation Time – 10 minutes for cookie dough 
Baking Time – 22 minutes
Makes – 16
 

Ingredients

125g butter, chopped, softened
2/3 cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 1/4 cups self-raising flour
2 tablespoons milk
1 cup quinoa flakes
1/4 cup rolled oats
2/3 cup mini M&Ms
 

Method

Line a cookie sheet with baking paper. Preheat oven to 180C.
 
Melt butter in a microwave (30 seconds at 1100W) or on the stovetop (a few minutes on low heat) until just melted. In a large bowl, combine melted butter and all the other ingredients. With a wooden spoon, mix gently to combine well. 
 
With your hands, shape cookies about 5cm in diameter and place them at least 2cm apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Bake in the preheated oven for approximately 20 to 22 minutes until slightly golden. The cookies will appear soft which is fine. Remove from the oven, transfer to a wire rack and cool completely. The cookies harden and become crunchy on cooling.
 
Store your cookies in an airtight cookie jar in the fridge or in a cool spot in your pantry for upto a week.

 

My Notes

If you would like to make a gluten free version, skip the flour and substitute it with almond meal. The cookies are perfect for the school lunchbox. 
 

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