Rosemary, Date, Walnut, and Feta Shortbread Cookies: Gluten-Free and Refined Sugar-Free

I don’t always know what first sparks an idea for a new recipe, but often it is because I hate to waste anything.  Case in point, these cookies.  It all started with feta cheese.

Yes, that’s right.  Not wanting to throw away some feta cheese resulted in cookies.

I didn’t want my usual go-to’s for feta cheese: pasta, pizza, salads, etc.  In the mood for something different, I did a quick internet search and found these Cranberry, Walnut and Feta Shortbread Cookies from Kitchen Tested.  Perfect!  But I wanted to make the recipe gluten-free, so that I could eat them.  Duh!  As usual, I turned to Elana’s Pantry and found these Gluten-Free Pecan Shortbread Cookies.

After a quick look in my pantry to make sure that I had enough almond flour, I decided to use dates in place of cranberries and add some fresh rosemary.  I had some in the fridge that needed to be used up before it too went to waste.  Win, win!

I adore umami flavors: sweet, sour, bitter, and salty, so these cookies were perfect for me.  It would be super easy, though, to leave out the rosemary if you aren’t a fan.  Or to substitute a difference nut for the walnuts.  Heck, you could even use goat cheese or blue cheese crumbles in place of the feta.  Just let me know if how they turn out!

Rosemary, Date, Walnut, and Feta Shortbread Cookies

2 1/2 c. almond flour
1/4 t. salt
1/4 t. baking soda
1 T. fresh rosemary, minced
5 T. raw honey
1/2 c. unsalted butter, melted
1 T. gluten-free vanilla extract
1/2 c. dates, chopped
1 c. walnuts, toasted and chopped
4 oz. feta cheese, crumbled

In a medium bowl combine almond flour, salt, baking soda, and rosemary. In a large bowl, mix together honey, butter, and vanilla. Add the flour mixture to the honey mixture and combine. Stir in dates, walnuts, and feta cheese until just combined.

Place dough in the center of a large piece of waxed paper and form into a log that is about 2 1/2-inches in diameter. Place dough in freezer for about one hour, or until firm.

Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit. Remove dough from freezer and unwrap. Cut dough into 1/4-inch slices and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake until the cookies are a light golden brown, about 12-15 minutes, or until the edges are a dark golden brown. Cool cookies on baking sheet for one minute, then move to a cooling rack.

Makes approximately 3 dozen cookies.


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