agave-sweetened oatmeal raisin cookies

1 cup almonds

21/4 cups whole-grain spelt flour

3 cups pressed oats

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

2 sticks unsalted butter, wrappers reserved

1Â1/2; cups blue agave syrup

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 cup raisins or chocolate chips

Set oven to preheat to 350 F. Meanwhile, place the almonds on an ungreased cookie sheet and put sheet in preheating oven. When oven is up to temperature, about 7 minutes later, remove nuts. Chop coarsely and set aside.

Combine the spelt flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Set aside.

In a bowl with an electric mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Gradually pour in the agave syrup and vanilla and beat until smooth and creamy. Add flour mixture and mix to combine. Stir in the raisins or chocolate chips.

Grease cookie sheet with reserved butter wrappers. Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto cookie sheets. Flatten cookies slightly. A standard-sized sheet should accommodate 12 cookies.

Bake cookies for 12 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes on sheet, then move to a counter or cooling rack.

Makes 48 cookies.

— Recipe adapted by Mary Shaw, culinary educator for Ashland Food Co-op, from "Joy of Cooking."

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