Friday, August 13, 2010

Gluten Free Baking

Recently I put together a little gluten-free Care Package of Love for my cousin. Of course there were some store-bought goodies in there... of both the sweet and savory varieties, but you know as well as I do that nothing beats homemade treats.

First up, I made these Maple-Flax Cookies from Ricki's blog. I didn't have any whole flax seeds, so I used a little extra ground flax and a little extra whole oats. Wow, these were so easy and came together quickly. They are crisp, like a ginger snap and have a great flavor. Sweet like a sweetie, but not overwhelmingly so. Sort of a grown-up cookie! Definitely something I'll make again!

I also made a batch of the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies from Mary's blog. This is my absolute favorite "go-to" recipe for GF cookies. I LOVE these little buggers! This time, though, I didn't have a whole cup of peanut butter! Crisis in the homeland! How could this happen? In the midst of baking, I turned desperately to the fridge to see what I could find. In the end I settled for about 1/2 c. peanut butter, 1/4 c almond butter, and 1/4 cup tahini, and 5 scraped empty jars of nut butter. The good news? This was the most delicious and perfect batch EVER of these magical cookies! So next time, I think I'll make this accidental recipe change again. In fact, when the package arrived, I got a sweet message on the answering machine saying how great the package was... but especially those chocolate chip cookies... and that her husband thought they were the best cookies he'd ever had! Happiness!

And, finally, I made the Gluten-Free Blueberry Lemon Muffins, also from Ricki. These were incredible!! I couldn't believe they were gluten-free. This was my first experiment making GF muffins, and the total 100% success was very encouraging! They had a beautiful, light crumb... held together nicely, were moist, and had a gentle sweetness that was just right for a muffin - and not anywhere near cupcake territory. Perfect!

I did make a few of her suggested alterations based entirely on what was already in my pantry: I used sweetened dried blueberries instead of unsweetened. I used more brown rice flour instead of amaranth flour, which I don't have sitting around. Also, I used the agave instead of stevia - because, again, agave is something I keep in the cupboards and stevia isn't. Oh, I also added in about 1/2 tsp xantham gum, because I was a non-believer and wanted to be sure they would turn out. I will totally make these again, and I love knowing that I can make a delicious muffin for any of my GF loved ones.

Many thanks to my bloggy friends Mary and Ricki for doing the hard work on developing these delicious and reliable GF vegan recipes. And, three cheers for homemade goodies for all... even gluten-free vegans deserve a care package now and then!


  1. I've wanted to try my hand at gf baking for a while now, thanks for the extra motivation. I really dig your blog!:)

  2. Oh my deary. Everything looks so good! The maple-flax cookies look kinda like snickerdoodles :P

  3. Oooh I can't wait to make those Blueberry Lemon Muffins. I am not gluten free, but I do love muffins, especially stevia sweetened ones. Thanks for sharing :)

  4. Wow, Amey, thanks so much for trying both recipes--and I am so glad you liked them! Those PB cookies also sound fantastic. I love happy accidents like that one! It's so true what they say: there are no accidents in cooking, just new recipes ;)

  5. Wow, you are such a great cousin! The cookies look mouthwatering, especially the chocolate chip ones!

  6. What a sweet and wonderful thing to do for your cousin!

    Thanks for the great recipes. I don't know anybody who eats gluten-free, but you never know when I might need these. Besides, who says you have to be a celiac to enjoy great GF baking, right?

  7. Thanks for this post! I am working on some gluten free baking today!

  8. Your lucky cousin! Everything looks absolutely delicious. I wouldn't mind a batch of gf cookies right now!


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