Cannellini bean cookies, called SangTu GwaJa in Korean, can easily be found in Korean bakeries. The Korean name is interesting because “sangtu” means a married man’s haircut – a topknot. “Gwaja” is a type of snack food like cookies or chips. Since these cookies look like topknot haircuts, Koreans called them “sangtu gwaja.” Another unique thing about this recipe is that there is no flour in it, which makes it great for those who have an allergy to wheat. My husband said he was surprised that there are no grains used to make them when he tried them for the first time. The main ingredients are: cannellini bean paste (a.k.a. white kidney beans) and almond powder. They are very tasty and sweet cookies. The texture is slightly chewy, but mostly, it is cake-like: as if they have flour in it.
Yield: 50 Bean Cookies
Short Korean Lesson
- BeGae (베개) = Pillow
- IBul (이불) = Blanket
- 1½ Cups White Kidney Bean Paste
- ½ Cup Almond Powder
- 1 Egg Yolk
- 2 Tbsp Milk
Obtain ½ cup of almond powder. I make my own powder by grinding ½ cup of sliced almonds.
Obtain 1½ cups of cannellini bean paste. I used pre-made paste for this recipe, but someday I want to show you how to make the white bean paste from scratch. The paste is sweet and it is also used in various other Korean snacks and desserts.
Combine the bean paste, almond powder, 2 Tbsp of milk, and 1 egg yolk into a mixing bowl.
Mix everything together until you get a smooth paste with a texture like peanut butter.
Put the bean paste mixture into a cake decorating pouch and put a ½ inch cake decorating tip on the end.
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Place a piece of wax paper on top of the baking sheet. Hold the bag at a 90° angle, about ¼ inch above the wax paper, and start to squeeze. Once the cookie is about 1 inch in diameter, slowly stop squeezing while lifting up.
Bake the cookies for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the outside is slightly golden brown, and the inside is cooked.
The shape is beautiful. If you know anybody who has an allergy to wheat, this will be a great cookie to make for them; it will be a pleasant surprise. Of course, it is great for anybody else that likes sweet desserts. Enjoy! 🙂