October 31st, Samhain, is a day that we honor the ancestors of the past. Soul cakes are a tradition of Eastern Europeans and the Irish. They are baked on All Hallows Eve as gifts for the dead. I am 50% Irish and 50% Eastern European, so this is a great way for me to respect my ancestors and thank them for their guidance.
This tradition of “souling” was even popular amongst Christians who fed them to beggars around town on All Hallows Eve. They were also consecrated and blessed and given to the poor. The tradition varies
There are numerous ways these cakes can be baked, but for this recipe, I decided to use a simple recipe similar to shortbread. Traditionally the cakes are filled with dried fruit or preserves, so I filled these with strawberry fruit spread.
Honoring our ancestors through food is such an excellent way to connect to our ancestry. No matter where your family comes from, these cookies are a simple way to celebrate this day.
2c almond flour
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp coconut flour
3tbsp coconut oil or butter
1/4c dried fruit or fruit preserve
- Preheat oven to 325 F/162 C
- Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix together, forming a large ball
- If decorating the top with a design, place a small portion of the dough to the side and roll between two pieces of parchment paper until thin. Then place the rolled-out dough in the freezer while you prepare the cookies (approximately 15 minutes). This will make it easier to work with and form shapes for the top of the cookie.
- Use a spoon to scoop out dough about the size of a silver dollar onto parchment paper.
- Press the dough flat with your fingers.
- Use the back of the spoon to form a small well and place the dried fruit or preserves inside.
- If designing the top, take your dough out of the freezer and form the design you want on the top.
- Place the cookies into the preheated oven
- Back 10-15 minutes