Thursday, February 10, 2011

Heavenly Snickerdoodles

These are hands-down the best snickerdoodles I've ever had, ever, ever.  They are soft, chewy, and the thin coating of sugar and cinnamon is perfectly balanced in its sweetness.  I have been bringing my kitchen creations into school to get feedback from my classmates (and also to avoid eating all of this food by myself, because believe me, I could do it).  These got rave reviews!  My professor took one bite, looked at me in surprise, and said, "Wow - you would never know that these are gluten-free!"  Another classmate leaned over as she was eating hers and confided, "I think I like gluten-free cookies better than regular ones."  I may have them all converted to gluten-free diets by May.  We'll see. 

But that should be all you need to hear to convince you to make these.  These are the kind of gluten-free snack you can proudly offer your friends.  You can bring them without shame to the potluck.  No apologies necessary for their being gluten-free - because no one will know.  Unless, of course, you want to impress them even more.

I adapted a recipe from Cybele Pascal's cookbook, The Allergen-Free Baker's Handbook, to make these.  I didn't change all that much;  I used an egg instead of egg replacer, adjusted the vanilla (I love my vanilla), and used sorghum flour in place of some of her more starchy blend to make it more whole grain.  Obviously, if the above comments are any indication, they turned out beautifully - for both the gluten-free and gluten-ful.

Heavenly Snickerdoodles (Adapted from "The Allergen-Free Baker's Handbook" by Cybele Pascal)
Makes 48 small cookies or 36 large ones
(You can either use 2 1/2 cups + 2 tbsp. of your favorite gluten-free flour blend OR the following mix of flours)
1 1/4 cups brown rice flour
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup potato starch
1/4 cup tapioca starch
2 tbsp. sweet rice flour (or more tapioca starch)
1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup Spectrum Organic Shortening
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp. firmly packed brown sugar
3 tsp. vanilla extract
1 egg
1/3 cup So Delicious Original Coconut Milk
2 tbsp. granulated sugar + 2 tsp. ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper (no cooking spray is needed).

In a small bowl, mix the flours, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt together.  Set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, cream the Spectrum shortening and both sugars together with an electric mixer until very well-blended.  Add the vanilla extract and egg and continue to mix.

Add about 1/4th of the flour mixture and - still using the electric mixer - beat it into the dough.  Add a little of the coconut milk and mix.  Alternate between adding the flour and coconut milk until it is completely blended, scraping the sides of the bowl as-needed to make sure everything gets mixed in.  The dough will be pretty stiff at this point.

Combine the sugar and cinnamon and pour onto a plate.

You can make these into bigger cookies by using a tablespoon measure or smaller ones using a teaspoon measure.  Choose one and use the measure to scoop out the dough, and then roll each scoop into a ball using your hands.  Then, roll the ball in the cinnamon-sugar mixture and place onto the baking sheet.  Space about 2-3 inches apart.

Bake the larger cookies at 350 F for 10-12 minutes, or just until they are set.  Bake the smaller ones for 8 - 10 minutes or until set.  Remove from oven and leave on the hot baking sheet for another 5 minutes until they start to firm up.  Then, remove to a wire rack to cool.

If there are any left to store, keep them in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

You can also freeze the dough and defrost later as-needed for a quick batch of these!


Kendra said...

Those do look heavenly! Gluten-free baking with So Delicious coconut milk and yogurt really gives everything such a nice taste and texture. I don't eat eggs, so I'm going to try making them with a flax seed egg, instead. Any other ideas?

Claire Berman said...

Hi Kendra! Thanks for your comment. I love So Delicious Coconut Milk as well, although I just discovered it recently! Have you tried using egg replacer before? I think that, or the flax seed trick, would work best. .5 tsp Egg Replacer + 2 tbsp. liquid would replace one egg.

You could also try using 1/4 cup of your favorite (vegan?) yogurt. Banana would also work and might actually taste pretty delicious with the cinnamon (1/2 banana to replace the egg).

Would love to hear what you try and how it turns out!


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