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Vegan Milky Hazelnut and Tahini Cookies

These ultra-soft plant-based tahini cookies are studded with chunks of vegan milk chocolate and crunchy roasted hazelnuts.

Introduction

Tahini, milk chocolate and hazelnuts are such a great match! Tahini makes this cookie dough very silky and creamy, but the chunks of hazelnut and chocolate provide a bit of bite. While some may miss butter in vegan cookies, you barely notice its absence in this one made using a vegan butter. Make sure to let the dough rest for long enough in the refrigerator that the vegan butter has time to harden before you roll the dough balls.

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Ingredients

150g (5½oz/⅔ cup) refrigerator-cold vegan butter (vegan block or margarine), diced
50g (1¾oz/3½ tbsp) tahini paste
15g (½oz/1 tbsp) coconut oil
130g (4½oz/⅔ cup) light muscovado sugar
100g (3½oz/½ cup) caster (granulated) sugar
320g (11¼oz/2½ cups minus 1 tbsp) plain (all-purpose) flour
30g (1oz/3⅔ tbsp) spelt flour
20g (⅔oz/3 tbsp) cornflour (cornstarch)
5g (1⅔ tsp) baking powder
2g (⅔ tsp) salt
65ml (2¼fl oz/4½ tbsp) plant-based milk
160g (5¾oz) vegan milk chocolate, roughly chopped
100g (3½oz/¾ cup) hazelnuts, roasted

Essential kit

You will need a food processor or a stand mixer.

Method

Add the vegan butter, tahini and coconut oil to your food processor or to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on a medium speed for 15 seconds until the butter begins to break up. Add both types of sugar and mix for about 30 seconds until everything is roughly mixed. Scrape the butter down from the sides of the bowl.

Combine the flours, baking powder and salt in a separate bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in two batches, mixing for 15 seconds between each batch until everything is just combined. Scrape down the base and sides of the bowl between each round of mixing.

Add the milk and mix the dough until smooth and even.

Finally, add the chocolate and hazelnuts and mix at a low speed until it is roughly mixed into the dough.

Scoop 75g (2½oz) balls of dough using an ice cream scoop, or roll balls using 3 tablespoons of dough. There should be enough to make about 15 cookies. Place the dough balls in a container with a lid or on a tray that you then cover with cling film (plastic wrap). Leave to rest in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours – preferably overnight.

Preheat the oven to 190°C fan (210°C/410°F/gas 6–7).

Place the dough balls approximately 5cm (2in) apart on baking trays lined with baking parchment. Bake in the middle of the oven for 9–10 minutes until the cookies are done. Bake one sheet at a time if not using a fan oven. The cookies should have expanded a bit, risen and begun to firm, but should still glisten a little bit and should not have cracked.

Remove the baking trays from the oven. Leave the cookies to cool for 5 minutes on the tray, then transfer them to a cooling rack and leave to cool for at least another 10-15 minutes.

Cookies & Crumbs  by Kaja Hengstenberg (Quadrille, £16.99) Photography by Lennart Weibull

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