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Strawberry, Pomegranate and Baobab Thumbprint Cookies with Astragalus

Updated: Oct 25, 2021

These cookies are the perfect blend of salty and sweet, crunchy and gooey. And they have some pretty potent health benefits too!

The best part for a busy mom like me, is that they are easy to make and adaptable. I can substitute just about any kind of nut for almonds and any type of jam.

I believe that food should be our medicine and medicine can be our food. As your body gets a wider variety of plant-based nutrients, it gets healthier. You notice more energy, better resistance to stress and illness, more vitality. And as you get healthier, you feel better; your body produces less symptoms.

Some phytonutrient highlights from these cookies:

Almonds- Almonds contain the most vitamin E of all nuts. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant and helps reduce lipid peroxidation (the process by which cholesterol forms in our arteries). They also contain a good amount of fiber and protein in addition to its healthy fats. The are an excellent source of potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, and zinc too. Their laetrile content (a flavonoid), has resulted in almonds reputation as an anti-cancer food, Like any nut or seed, please eat in moderation. An ounce a day is plenty. Their high fat content means that they can go rancid easily. Please remember to store them in a tightly sealed container in a cool, dark place.

Chia Seeds- Did you know that chia seeds contain Omega-3 essential fatty acids? They also contain 5 x the calcium of cow breastmilk, phosphorus and boron which are needed for bone growth. Chia seeds like to absorb water and turn into a gel. They can help provide bulk and moisture to make moving your bowels easier. The gel is part of what holds these cookies together.

Astragalus- Astragalus is a root from China, used for thousands of years to strengthen the immune system. It can increase white blood cell count, decrease viral replication and stimulate the production of T Killer cells (immune cells). It is also used by herbalist for increasing energy. People with adrenal fatigue, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome would benefit by taking this herb daily. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, it is used in a formula that builds up a protective shield, that keeps out cold and external influences that can cause illness. It has a mild, sweet taste and can be used in food without even noticing it!

Strawberry- Berries are my favorite fruit. They pack a lot of phytonutrients into a tasty little fruit! Like all berries, they contain tons of flavonoids. Their anthocyanidins (a type of flavonoid) give them their bright red color. Bright colors mean good nutrition. These type of anthocyanidins are anti-inflammatory and help block the enzyme, cyclooxygenase, or COX. Just like aspirin or ibuprofen, by blocking this enzyme, pain is blocked but without the intestinal bleeding or heart disease. Imagine if eating strawberries every day could lower your pain without side effects!

Strawberries also have strong anti-cancer effects. In one study, strawberries were #1 of a list of 8 foods linked to lowering cancer deaths among a group of 1,271 elderly people. This was just the jam I had on hand; you can use any in this recipe.

Strawberry, Pomegranate, Baobab Thumbprint Cookies with Astragalus
Makes about 12
Vegan, GF, DF

1 cup rolled or steel cut oats
1/2 cup almonds
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup coconut oil or vegan butter
1/2 cup maple syrup
3 tbsp chia seeds
2 tbsp astragalus powder
a couple tbsp Jam of your choice, I used Strawberry, Pomegranate, Baobab

Preheat over to 350*. Soak the chia seeds in the maple syrup for about 10 minutes. Add this and all the rest of the ingredients (except jam), into a food processor and pulse until a course dough starts to form. It make take a few "longer" pulses to get the nuts broken down. Roll into 1-2" balls and place on parchment lined baking sheet. Gently flatten and make a depression in the center of each cookie. Add a bit of jam to the depression. Bake for 12-14 minutes. Let cool and try not to eat them all in one day! XOXO

In another medium pot, pour cherries and cardamom, stir and cook over medium heat until berries are soft. You can smoosh some with your spoon or leave whole. e

Scoop polenta into a serving bowl, top with cherries and add a sprinkle of pistachios.

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