Spring 2021

Helen Graham’s Spiced Cookies

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Serving: Makes 15 cookies

Prep Time: 45 minutes - 1 hour

Cook Time: 12 minutes

Spiced cookies


For the Ras El Hanout

6g Smoked paprika

5g Cumin seeds

1g Rose petals

4g Coriander seeds

1g Cinnamon

2g Black pepper

To decorate

4g Rose petals

4g Demerara sugar

Pinch of Maldon Salt

For the cookies

200g Unsalted butter at room temperature

200g Caster sugar

1 Egg

320g Plain flour

3g Baking powder

Pinch of Maldon Salt

60g Dried cranberries, roughly chopped


I put Maldon Salt in all sweet dishes I make – it has a way of adding balance so nothing is ever overly sweet, as well as bringing out other flavours and making them shine. Here, it is paired with ras el hanout, which translates to ‘spice of the house’. I know it seems a little strange to use these spices in a cookie, but trust me on this one – the overall flavour is of warming, subtle spice. If you want to make a big batch of ras el hanout, multiply the quantities by 10 and just use 20g for the recipe.

Pre heat the oven to 180c fan. 

Place all the ingredients for the ras el hanout in a spice grinder and blend to a fine powder. Set aside. Place the rose petals for the decoration into the spice ginger, blend roughly and toss with the remaining ingredients. Set aside.

Beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add and beat to combine. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, Maldon Salt and cranberries with the ras el hanout and stir to combine. Beat into the butter mixture until fully incorporated. Transfer the mixture to a sheet of cling film – the mix should be a rough ball. Refrigerate until firmed up – about 45mins – 1 hour. 

Line two baking trays with baking parchment and divide the mixture into 50g balls – you should get about 15 cookies out of the mixture. Spread the balls out evenly over the two trays, making sure they have enough space to spread as they cook. Press lightly and bake for 12 mins. As soon as you remove the cookies from the oven, sprinkle them with the rose mix to garnish and leave to cool. 

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