The first summer I learned how to can, I couldn’t wait to make jam, but when I whipped up my first batch, I was kind of disappointed. Pounds of fruit yielded only a few jars. Ever since, I use even less fruit for mini-batches of jam that don’t require canning, and now the whole process is easier with the magic power of chia seeds that save lots of time and eliminate sugar.
With some leftover jam, I baked vegan cherry chia jam thumbprint cookies, which seemed like a well-deserved upgrade from just slathering it on toast. The dough was a simple mixture of buckwheat flour, almond flour, cinnamon, sea salt, maple syrup and oil. The cookies had the most wonderful crumbly bite and just the right amount of sweetness with the cherry jam.
Vegan Cherry Chia Jam Thumbprint Cookies
Loosely adapted from Donna Hay
Makes 24 cookies
1 cup pitted sweet cherries
1-1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon maple syrup
2 tablespoons chia seeds
2 cups buckwheat flour
1-1/2 cups almond flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 maple syrup
1/2 cup vegetable oil
Place the cherries in a large saucepan over medium heat for 5-10 minutes. As they cook and become juicy, mash the cherries with the back of a wood spoon or a potato masher to break them up. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice, maple syrup and chia seeds. Cool to room temperature before transferring to a jar or other airtight storage container. The jam will be thicken more once it is fully chilled.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine the buckwheat flour, almond flour, cinnamon and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the maple syrup and vegetable oil. Fold the wet ingredient into the dry ingredients. Scoop the dough by the heaping tablespoonful and place on the prepared sheet pan about 3 inches apart. Press your thumb into the center to make an indentation and spoon in about 1 teaspoon of jam. Bake for 14-16 minutes until golden brown. Cool for a few minutes on the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Store in an airtight container.