a foray into gluten-free
December 3, 2009 § 9 Comments
Oh flour, how I love thee, let me count the ways! 1: cake. 2: cookies. 3: warm bread. And so on, I think you get the idea.
But in fact, flour is very unkind to a small segment of the population. Specifically, it creates much unpleasantness for those people with Celiac disease, which comes with pretty tricky food restrictions. The gluten-free diet rules out anything with flour, as well as several other foods (beer! ack!), but it would be unacceptably tragic not to be able to eat baked goods. And so, after a few discussions with a friend who has Celiac, I set my sights on baking something delicious and gluten-free. Then it took me at least a month to get around to it.
The main obstacle was that every recipe seemed to require four different flours which I didn’t yet own, and were pretty expensive. In the end, I went in completely the opposite direction: flourless! Highly delicious and definitely no gluten. My nearly flourless chocolate cake would have been easy to adapt, but I wanted something portable that I could take to share with others. The answer, then, was flourless peanut butter cookies: I didn’t know they existed, but I’m so glad I do now.
I can’t pretend that these are exactly the same as regular peanut butter cookies: the lack of flour makes them a bit prone to falling apart, and the texture is different. But they’re still soft and peanut buttery and full of flavour – my friend said this was the best peanut butter cookie she’d had since her diagnosis. So I pronounce my first attempt at gluten-free a success, and might even go buy some fancy flours soon. Those who know me won’t be surprised that I didn’t take much convincing.
Peanut butter cookies: from Joy the baker
- 1 cup peanut butter (if you use a natural brand, you should probably add salt)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
Preheat oven to 350.
With hand mixer, beat peanut butter with sugars until well combined, about 2 minutes. Add egg and baking soda and beat for another 2 minutes. Roll dough into walnut-sized balls (it’ll be crumbly, just squeeze it lots), place on baking sheet and press down with fork. Bake until lightly browned, about 10 minutes.