Need a unique cookie recipe to add to your annual cookie exchange? These Sri Lankan Christmas Cake Cookies are cake-like, boozy cookies that are gluten free, butter free, and decadently delicious!
I took the traditional boozy Sri Lankan Christmas Cake of my youth and adapted the recipe to come up with these decadently delicious Sri Lankan Christmas Cake Cookies. These cake-like, boozy cookies are gluten free and butter free, and taste incredible. This is a unique cookie to add to your Christmas Cookie exchange!
If I say Christmas Cake, you probably think about fruit cake, right? But, the traditional Sri Lankan Christmas Cake I grew up on was far, far from the fruit cake. Yes, it has fruits and nuts in it, but it also has booze and jam in it, and it is made months in advance because the longer it sits, the better it tastes – just like a fine wine.
When I was a youngster, my parents would start making our traditional Sri Lankan Christmas Cake months ahead of Christmas. My dad and mom would cut up what seemed like cups and cups of glazed cherries, candied ginger, dates, raisins, ginger peel, lemon and lime peel, and cashews. Then, using a huge wooden spoon and what seemed like a cauldron, my dad would mix those fruits and nuts with brandy, jam, and golden syrup. That sweet boozy smell was intoxicating – and we hadn’t even gotten to baking it yet! My parents would usually cover this concoction up with plastic and let it sit for a few days so the booze and fruits and nuts got well acquainted before adding in semolina and aromatic spices like cinnamon and cardamom, sugar, and a boatload of eggs.
Then this cake mix would be poured into heavily lined baking trays and the cake would be baked for three to four hours over a very low flame – and, y’all – the smell! Wow – it was simply swoon-worthy! Now when that cake finally emerged, my mom would cut it into small 2×2 inch slices and then wrap each slice up. I gotta tell you, to my young self, one slice of that Christmas cake was the equivalent of a bar of gold! Sometimes, my now older self tends to agree.
Sri Lankan Christmas Cake Cookies Recipe
So, today I used elements of that Sri Lankan Christmas Cake of my youth in these Sri Lankan Christmas Cake Cookies. Now, I did not marinate the fruits, nuts, and booze for days. Instead, I whipped everything up the same day. I also exchanged the butter for solid coconut oil and used tapioca flour and rice flour making these cookies gluten free. I gotta say that even with my adaptations, the smell permeating my kitchen when these were baking took me on a trip down memory lane! When these came out of the oven, I forced myself to wait until they were somewhat cool before I sank my teeth into them and all I can say is glorious. These cookies are so good – I sure hope you give these a try!
- 5 dates
- 1/4 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1/4 cup solid coconut oil
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup strawberry jam
- 1/4 cup walnut pieces
- 1/4 cup pecan pieces
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup fruit and peel mix
- 1 tablespoon candied ginger preserves cut up
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/4 cup tapioca flour
- 3/4 cup brown rice flour
- 1 tablespoon brandy
- Add dates and raisins to warm water and let sit for about 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, add coconut oil and brown sugar to a bowl and cream them using an electric hand mixer.
- Add in the egg and mix.
- Then add in the strawberry jam and mix.
- Take the dates and raisins out of the water and chop them up and add to the mix in the bowl.
- Then, place the walnuts and pecans in a sandwich bag and using a gavel or rolling pin, whack the nuts till they are broken up more with fine dust and pieces. Then add these nuts to the bowl.
- Add in the salt, fruit and peel mix, ginger preserves, baking powder, vanilla and almond extracts, and mix well with the electric mixer.
- Then add in the tapioca flour and the brown rice flour and mix with a spoon or spatula.
- Add in the brandy and stir.
- Refrigerate cookie mix for 30 minutes till dough is hardened some and preheat oven to 325ºF while waiting.
- Then, scoop spoonfuls onto parchment lined baking tray and bake 18-20 minutes.
- Let cool before enjoying.
Home Chef Tip: Although there isn't much brandy in this recipe, you can completely omit it if you'd like.
We hope you love this delicious recipe for Sri Lankan Christmas Cake Cookies from SoFabFood Contributor, Shashi from Runnin Sri Lankan, as much as we do. If you enjoyed this delightful recipe, be sure to visit our Cookie Section for more like it. For daily recipe inspiration, like us on Facebook, follow us on Pinterest, and stop by our Google+ Community to see all of the amazing recipes our community members are sharing. Enjoy!