Tag Archives: cookies

Flourless Almond Butter Cookies

In a continuation of this past Daring Cooks’ challenge, I decided to incorporate my homemade nut butters into several sweet recipes. One such recipe seemed only natural – a nut butter cookie! I saw a post for flourless peanut butter cookies over at Gluten Free Easily a while back, and so I decided to consult that recipe as a guideline. However, I had a good deal of almond butter left over, so I wanted to make almond butter cookies instead.

Of course, I could have simply substituted the almond butter for the peanut butter, and followed the rest of the recipe as is. But what fun is that? Instead, I looked for a more complex flavor. I sought to use a touch of almond extract to really bring out the flavor of the almonds, and I went for an even depper flavor in the sweetener. Instead of brown sugar, I used piloncillo. Piloncillo, also referred to as panela, is a common sweetener in Central and South America and is usually sold in a solid block (mine was shaped like a cone), and is essentially nothing more than cane juice that has been boiled down. (Indian jaggery is similar.) The flavor is somewhat similar to brown sugar, but has lovely notes of vanilla and molasses. Because it is in a solid block, I opted to grate the panela using a cheese grater.

The result? These cookies were soft, slightly chewy, and oh-so-delicious. The kids devoured the first batch I made – always a sign of a good cookie! I made another batch a few days later and gave them to my sister and brother-in-law to enjoy (along with a few meals). You see, they became parents to twin girls on July 6 – and as we all know, cookies are the last thing new parents have time to prepare (but are very much needed – at least, in my opinion!).

Flourless Almond Butter Cookies, adapted from Gluten Free Easily

1 c almond butter

1 c grated piloncillo (can substitute brown sugar or coconut sugar)

1 egg

1 t baking soda

1/2 t vanilla extract

1/2 t almond extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients together well. Grease or moisten hands slightly and form dough into 1-inch balls. Place balls on parchment-lined cookie sheet. (Don’t press these down) Bake 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown and cookies look “set”. (they won’t look done.) Allow the cookies to rest on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes. Remove carefully and allow to finish cooling on a rack.

Makes 2 – 2 1/2 dozen cookies.

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Filed under Baked goods, Dairy-Free, Desserts, Gluten-Free, Quick and Easy

Chocolate Chip Meringues

meringues

My husband and I took the week off last week so we could hang out with the kids. Nothing too exciting (a staycation, if you will), we basically just took them swimming, bowling, shopping, and did a lot of hanging around the house. Not to say that we weren’t busy – one of the projects we tackled was the making of ice cream throughout the week.

Each kid got a chance to prepare ice cream, whatever flavor they desired. As I presented this opportunity to them, I imagined we would be preparing all sorts of creative, never-seen-before ice cream concoctions. Nope. Chocolate, Vanilla with chocolate, and chocolate with chocolate swirl. I suppose I had forgotten that sometimes, the simplest answer is the best, at least when it comes to our kids and food. (This also means that most of my culinary experiments are lost on them…oh well.)

So after making batch after batch of ice cream, I wondered what to do with all of the leftover egg whites. I threw some into breakfast tacos (along with a whole egg or two – I’m not a fan of “egg white only” scrambled eggs). But I still had leftovers. Hmmm…what gluten-free baked goods could I make with egg whites (without a trip to the store)? The signs all pointed to one solution – meringues.

Meringues are one of the easier desserts to make, as they only use a handful of ingredients. At their most basic, they only contain egg whites and sugar. This recipe is adapted from Emeril Lagasse’s recipe for Forgotten Kisses. My only change was that I eliminated nuts from his recipe, and used miniature chocolate chips, as they were on hand. They came together pretty quickly, and since the oven is turned off after preheating to bake them, I felt comfortable diverting my attention elsewhere for the remainder of the afternoon. Of course, after several hours had passed, I returned to remove them from the oven, and “taste test” one of the meringues. These treats are sweet and light, and delightfully melt in your mouth. The kids enjoyed them as well. Brittany exclaimed more than once while eating them “Wow, these are really good!”

 

Meringues, aka Forgotten Kisses, adapted from Emeril Lagasse

2 large egg whites, at room temperature

1/2 t cream of tartar

2/3 c granulated sugar

1 t vanilla extract

1 c miniature chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat egg whites until foamy. Add cream of tartar and beat until fluffy but not dry. Add the sugar gradually. When half of the sugar has been added, add the vanilla extract. Continue beating and adding sugar in batches, until all of the sugar is dissolved and the meringue is very glossy and tight. Gently fold in the chocolate chips.

Working one teaspoon at a time, push a teaspoonful of meringue from the tip of one teaspoon with the back of another teaspoon onto the lined baking sheets. Space meringues 1 inch apart. Place baking sheets in oven and turn the oven off. Leave the cookies in the oven for at least 2 hours, or until cookies are crisp and dry. (don’t disturb or open the oven for 2 hours.)

Makes about 3 1/2 to 4 dozen cookies.

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Filed under Baked goods, Desserts, Eggs, Gluten-Free

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Pecan and Cashew Chewy Cookies

chicken curry 171A few weeks back, I was visiting over at SippitySup and admiring some wonderful culinary creations, when I came across a truly wonderful bit of bliss. See, I believe that Greg and I are kin when it comes to cookie cravings. While I have never experienced the Harris Ranch Pecan Drop, I could only imagine the sheer magnificence of this cookie. I thank Greg for using his persuasive efforts in obtaining this recipe, and then sharing it with the world. Because, as you can see, this cookie contains no grains, and no dairy products, making it naturally gluten and dairy-free. I was just about leaping for joy.

This cookie, which I modified only to include cashews (I found out too late that I only had a pound of pecans, so I supplemented), is so deliciously chewy, sweet with a hint of salt, and in fact does remind you of pecan pie. It tastes so decadent, but contains no butter. You could almost call it healthy, if it weren’t for all that sugar. (I’ll let you consider it healthy – it’s a high-protein cookie, and that’s healthy, right?) These are incredibly addictive. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Pecan and Cashew Chewy Cookies, as adapted from SippitySup, who borrowed it from Harris Ranch

2 1/2 c brown sugar

3/4 t salt

3/4 t vanilla extract

1 lb pecan pieces, coarsely chopped

1/2 lb cashew pieces, coarsely chopped

1/2 c egg whites (about 3-4 large egg whites)

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the brown sugar, salt, vanilla, and nuts. Beat on low speed to incorporate ingredients. Drizzle in egg whites. Increase the speed to medium-low and beat for 4 to 5 minutes, scraping down the bowl as needed. The dough will be thick and sticky.

Drop your dough in rounded tablespoons onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Press each ball of dough with your fingers to form a cookie about 3 1/2 inches in diameter, about 1/8 inch thick.

Bake 10-12 minutes, or until the edges are lightly browned. Remove from oven and immediately move cookies to a cooling rack. (These cookies are soft straight from the oven, so you will have to be careful to “peel” them from the parchment paper. They’ll firm up as they cool.) The next day, if you can wait that long, these cookies will have developed a chewier texture, making them even more addictive.

Makes about 3 dozen.

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Filed under Baked goods, Dairy-Free, Desserts, Gluten-Free, Vegetarian

Molasses Crinkle Cookies

food-6121I love to bake cookies during the holidays. Unfortunately, with all of the other things the holidays require of us, I don’t get as much time as I’d like to devote to cookies. So, this year, I’ve scaled it back. Already made the peanut brittle, and this molasses cookie recipe was another that made the cut. These cookies are a deliciously thin but chewy bite of spiced goodness, and easy to make. I adapted the recipe from a Gourmet magazine recipe. Enjoy!

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup vegetable shortening at room temperature

1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup packed dark brown sugar

1 large egg

1/2 cup molasses (not robust or blackstrap)

About 1/3 cup sugar for tops of cookies

Whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves, and salt in a bowl until combined.

Beat together shortening, butter, and brown sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes in a stand mixer (preferably fitted with paddle attachment) or 6 minutes with a handheld. Add egg and molasses, beating until combined. Reduce speed to low, then mix in flour mixture until combined.

Put oven racks in upper and lower thirds of oven and preheat oven to 375°F.

Roll 1 heaping teaspoon of dough into a 1-inch ball with wet hands, then dip 1 end of ball in sanding sugar. Make more cookies in same manner, arranging them, sugared side up, 2 inches apart on 2 ungreased baking sheets.

Bake cookies, switching position of sheets halfway through baking, until undersides are golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes total, then cool on sheets 1 minute. Transfer to racks to cool completely. Make more cookies with remaining dough on cooled baking sheets.

Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

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