Friday, August 12, 2011
Mush Puppies (Our attempts at a gluten-free cookie!)
My gluten-free baking attempts have failed miserably, as we are not allowed to eat corn flour, white bean (garbanzo) flour, wheat flour, dairy or eggs because of our allergies. I have read seemingly hundreds of labels of gluten-free baking mixes, all of which somehow include at least one banned ingredient (cornstarch is a tricky one too). I have also tried to adjust "from-scratch" gluten-free recipes for cupcakes, muffins and cookies by substituting quinoa flour and flax-seed "eggs." These attempts end in a bunch of disappointed boys gathered around the sink for the ceremonial dumping of the mush piles.
My good friend Lori brought over some delicious chocolate peanut butter no-bake cookies that she had modified in the hopes that we could eat them. The original recipe came from her mother (hi Mrs. Rosinski!) and included milk and butter. Basically, the intent is to melt together butter, sugar, milk and cocoa, then mix in peanut butter and oatmeal off the heat. Drop by spoonfuls on a tray and let sit to harden. In her version, Lori was able to switch out the milk for rice milk, but the butter provided the necessary "glue" to bind everything together.
Over the course of this week, I've been trying and trying to find a substitute for that butter, with mixed success. Oil didn't work, because these cookies need to be solid at room temperature. Flax seed meal and honey didn't work. I can't use shortening because son #3 is allergic to palm oil and son#1 is allergic to corn oil. In my latest effort, I left out the butter and substitutes altogether, and swapped in SunButter (sunflower seed butter) for the peanut butter. The flavor is wonderful, but the cookies are still a little too soft to be practical. The boys have been eating them with a fork from a plate!
I've included the latest incarnation of this recipe here, even though it's not quite right, in the hopes that some readers might have suggestions to improve it! Three boys with chocolate all over their fingers would appreciate any help you can give :)
Mrs. Rosinski's Chocolate Peanut Butter No-Bake Cookies (with substitutions)
1 cup unrefined sugar
3/4 cup cocoa (I used Ghirardelli hot cocoa mix that had sugar in it but no dairy)
3/4 cup rice milk
1/2 cup SunButter (sunflower seed peanut butter substitute)
1 tsp. vanilla
3 cups oats
Melt together sugar, cocoa and rice milk. Cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Remove from heat and mix in SunButter, vanilla and oats. Drop by spoonful onto wax paper and let set. I put mine in the fridge to help them along. In this version of the recipe, the cookies will get firm, but not hard enough to handle for very long (they melt in your fingers).
Looking forward to reading your suggestions!
(This recipe has been shared at Simply Sugar & Gluten Free's "Slightly Indulgent Tuesday." Click here for more healthy recipes shared by readers.)