Macadamia and Lemon Cookies
Macadamia growers are urging Australians to throw a handful of Maccas into their BBQ salads and celebrate with a true Australian icon.
Unique to Australia, macadamias are the only indigenous plant commercially farmed for food in Australia - and the only native Australian plant to become an international food.
It is believed that long before Australia was mapped by European explorers, Aboriginal people would congregate on the eastern slopes of Australia's Great Dividing Range to feed on the seed of what is now known as the macadamia tree.
"What better way to celebrate our heritage and everything truly Australian than with Australias only native nut. Whether you are out and about or entertaining on Australia Day, the macadamia provides the ideal snack to be enjoyed on Australia Day," says Joylon Burnett, CEO of the Australian Macadamia Society.
Apart from their irresistible taste and texture, Burnett says macadamias have additional health and nutrition benefits including the highest amount of beneficial monosaturated fats (good oil) of any nut. They are also high in antioxidants and have the National Heart Foundation Approved Tick, making them part of a healthy balanced diet.
Macadamias also compliment both sweet and savoury recipes making them an ideal ingredient for cooking (see recipes macadamia and lemon cookies; and lamb with macadamia and tomato pesto).
With commercial production centred in northern New South Wales and south eastern Queensland where rich soils and high annual rainfall provide for maximum growth, the macadamia industry has grown dramatically over the last fifty years.
There are around six million trees producing up to 45,000 tonnes of macadamia nuts a year. Seventy five percent of Australian macadamias are exported giving other countries the opportunity to experience a unique taste of Australia.
"Although these unique Aussie nuts are available all year the ideal time to buy macadamias is during the warmer summer months when the season peaks and the price is at its best," says BurnettIngredients
125g unsalted softened butter
½ cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind
1 ¼ cups self raising flour
¾ cup chopped raw macadamiasMethod
1.Preheat oven to 180C.
2.Using electric beaters, beat 125g unsalted softened butter, ½ cup caster sugar and 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind in a large bowl until light and creamy. Add 1 egg and continue beating until fully combined. Mix through 1 ¼ cups self raising flour and ¾ cup chopped raw macadamias.
3.Roll tablespoonfuls of the mixture into rough balls and place on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Press down slightly to flatten each cookie.
4.Bake for 15 minutes or until golden.
Substitute lemon rind for 1 teaspoon ground ginger or ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon for macadamia spice flavoured cookie.