Fig & Almond Shortbread (Vegan)


Blogging friends are the best. When I went on the POM Harvest Tour, I met Heather of Heather Eats Almond Butter. Actually, she was the first person I spoke to when I was there.

She's very, very nice, smart, and inspirational. I've been reading her blog since I got back, and I'm enjoying it. I'm learning more about nutrition and different food products I've never heard of before. She's also really into yoga, (along with Veggiegirl) so I tried that the other day. I used a yoga DVD that somebody gave me a few years ago and I didn't use. Yoga ia hard. It's difficult, and I didn't realize how much. I think you have to be a certain kind of person to get into it. Or maybe a certain body type. I'm more of a cardio-aerobics kind of gal. Preferably from the 80's.



Anyway, she makes these cookies called "Maple Nut Oaties", and when I first read about them, I wanted to try them. So Heather generously offered to send me some. And I was like, "Noooo you don't have to do that!" But secretly I wanted the cookies. Then she insisted, and I happily accepted her offer.



So a couple of days later, a box arrived from Miss Heather, and she did indeed send me the cookies, but she also sent me sunflower seed and almond butter from Trader Joe's! I've never had either, so I was eager to try them both. Thank you SO much, Heather! Your cookies are delicious and I want to eat them in a bowl of milk like cereal. Maple Nut Oaties! Is that not a great title for a cereal?



Guess what? I love almond butter too, now. It's hard not to put it on/in everything. I'm kind of obsessed with it, which isn't good because the only almond butter we have here is $7 a jar, and I'm too poor for those kinds of shenanigans. And we don't have a Trader Joes, which angers me. But I'm going off topic here, so somebody keep me on track.





I used the almond butter in a healthy cookie recipe. Guess what? It's vegan! Yaaay! This is my first vegan recipe I've created. See, it makes sense because you don't need eggs for shortbread, and the almond butter replaces the regular butter.



I flavored the shortbread with a seasonal fall fruit I wanted to use - figs. No, not fresh figs, because that would add too much moisture, and also because dammit if we don't have fresh figs here, either. Plennnnty of sausage, jowl and ham hocks though. Because you know how much I love to cook a big pot of white beans with jowl in it. Heh, heh, heh. Mmmm.

I thought orange and clove would go nicely with the figs and almond butter, so that's in there too. These are delicious. They taste like those Nature Valley granola bars.


Fig & Almond Shortbread

1 cup old fashioned oats + 1/4 cup
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground clove
2/3 cup finely chopped dried figs
1/3 cup almond butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a cookie sheet with cooking spray.

Process 1 cup oats in a food processor until finely ground; add to medium mixing bowl. To bowl, add additional 1/4 cup oats, flour, salt and clove, and stir until combined; stir in figs until combined.
In a large bowl, using a mixer on medium speed, beat together almond butter and brown sugar until creamy, about 1 minute; beat in orange juice and vanilla until combined. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually beat in flour mixture until combined.

Shape dough into a ball and roll (using a rolling pin) into an 11x8-inch rectangle, on a lightly floured surface, about 1/4-inch thick. Trim off raggedy ends, then cut rectangle into rows 5x5. Transfer squares to cookie sheet and lightly press almonds into them. Bake 25-30 minutes or until light golden brown and crisp. Cool 2 minutes on pan before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 25 shortbread


36 comments:

  1. What georgous treats, Emily!! I so love almond butter!!

    MMMMMMMMM,...all the way!

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  2. I love figs in baking - I need to make something like this.

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  3. I love jowl and white beans and I'm kinda over aerobics! ...LOL! These look great I love the orange and spices in these Emily.

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  4. When we were in San Francisco I went to my very first Trader Joe's ever...we don't have it in Canada either.Wnat I wanted there was pumpkin pancake batter!!!!!I love these vegan cookies you have created Emily, they would be sweet too with the figs.

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  5. Almond butter is all good!!!! The sunflower seed is new for me, I'm so curious about it! I think I might try to make it (since finding it here it's like a joke lol). The cookies sound just awesome for vegans and non vegans alike! You're right, blogging friends are just great ;)

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  6. Indeed yoga is hard!! It's not for sissies - true workout.

    I KNEW you'd love Heather!! She's a fabulous person and friend; and thank you for the mention re: yoga ;)


    LOOOVE the fig & almond flavor combination!

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  7. P.S. !!!!


    1.) I've had the pleasure of trying Heather's oaties too - sennnnnsational.


    2.) TJ's RAW almond butter = a daily staple of mine.

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  8. I kid you not - CD (husband) was just asking me yesterday if I could make him some homemade granola bars..."ones that taste like Nature Valley".

    Your shortbread looks and sound delicious. Beautiful pictures as always, and I am so glad to hear you're loving the almond butter. It is hard NOT to put it on everything and much cheaper to buy here in Nashville. Let me know if you ever want more, and it's on its way. :)

    Love doing cardio to 80's music. Nothing wrong with that!

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  9. look at you, breaking into vegan territory! these sound like great bars--the cloves really seal the deal for me.

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  10. I'd totally buy Maple Nut Oaties cereal. :) Mmmm, almond butter.

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  11. Oh they look good! We have a Trader Joe's here but it's a drive that usually involves traffic (which I hate!). I do love almond butter...so good!

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  12. These look so good! ALMOND BUTTER 4-eva <3

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  13. great recipe! it's always nice to see a vegan shortbread recipe out there and especially with figs!

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  14. I think the figs would taste good with the jowl, don't you?

    I love almond butter. I like to have a spoonful (no more than that because it has mega calories and I'm getting too fat)with an apple or pear as my afternoon snack.

    I never knew you could do that trick with the almond butter in the shortbread. Looks delicious.

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  15. mm girl great vegan debut! They sounds delicious!!

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  16. These look fantastic! I love the addition of the figs. One of my favorite things ever...yum!

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  17. wow...these sound amazing...love the photos... :)

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  18. This is a nice vegan recipe indeed, and a prety healthy shortbread! Great! Thank you :)

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  19. these look wonderful! I've never baked with almond butter before- can you just substitute it for regular butter in a recipe? I actually have a little fig tree (more of a fig bush) in my back yard that is producing fruit right now. The only problem is that only about 3 or 4 figs get ripe at the same time so I can't really bake them into a cake or anything!

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  20. How nice of her! I love Trader Joe's but the closest one to us is in Indy which is entirely too far away! These look yummy and healthy!!

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  21. i cannot get into yoga either. ive done it a few times and am just not a fan!

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  22. Awww, that was sweet of her, I love TJs almond butter! Your cookies look so delicious with the figs and spices - yum!

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  23. I have to get the figs and the almond butter in a specialty store here.

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  24. aww, heab is awesome :) these sound delicious, and i'm totally making them!!

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  25. Darlin',
    You never have to be without almond butter again. Pulverize 1 cup of raw almonds, which you've toasted, in the food processor. Add 2 teaspoons of mild oil. There you go! Some people don't even add the oil. You just have to work at it for a while.

    It won't have the perfectly smooth texture of the commercial, but it's pretty darn good.

    Gorgeous recipe.

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  26. I love yoga! I admit that I prefer it more with music playing in the background, though. In fact, it's a must. I blame ballet.

    These sound incredible, flavorful, and easy to make. What a great blogging friend!

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  27. I have never seen such butters before, but the snack you created looks fabulous!!!

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  28. these look great! i love almond butter! and i have to agree with you about yoga, its SUPERhard and painful! i think you have to work at it for awhile.

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  29. Figs are one of my faves, dried or fresh, and this shortbread looks absolutely delicious! :)

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  30. Thanks all!

    Derrick, I think so... I really don't know. It depends on what you're making.

    Sue, yes, I thought about making my own. But I think I'm too lazy...

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  31. I looove Heather & I have been meaning to try her yummy looking/sounding cookies, so thanks for the reminder!

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  32. I would eat Maple Nut Oaties for breakfast- I'd also eat that shortbread for breakfast. In honor of their vegan-ness, I'll even drench them in soy milk! :)

    (We also don't have Trader Joe's in Florida. Every time I see someone's blog posts with Trader Joe's goodies, I burn with envy!)

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  33. I made a version of these and put 'em on my blog. This recipe rules.
    http://vegetablevalhalla.blogspot.com/2009/11/fig-almond-butter-shortbread-hummus.html

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