Thursday, December 11, 2008
There are cookies and then there are Cookies!!
Tis the season for baking in my house. I can't seem to resist that temptation of baking cookies for yule and christmas just like my mom always did when I was a kid. Problem is 1. I don't want to eat the damn things 2. I shouldn't eat them because they are made with flour and wheat and I do not get along very well and 3. I have no will power and I don't need the things in my house!!
But as usual I start asking the kids what kind of cookies do they want to make and then it all gets out of control. Leah wants shortbread, a favourite of everyone but Quinn, and Quinn wants these sugar cookie stocking cookies with chocolate chips and nuts in them.
So we started this evening on the stocking cookie dough and Quinn wants marshmallows instead of nuts to be rolled into them. Which made a bit of a mess when the marshmallows kind of EXPLODED! They sure don't look like stockings any more! The kids were disappointed but enthusiastically offered to eat them anyways, what great kids I have!
So on we go to shortbread, which I truly love but of course I need to make gluten free shortbread. Well the internet has all these lovely recipes for gluten free "melt in your mouth" shortbread. Seriously I don't think anyone who wrote this has eaten "real" shortbread in a very long time! Melt in your mouth? well kind of if you like that gritty fine grain sandy feel that rice flour seems to always leave in your mouth.
Well as usual I can't leave a recipe alone and have had some success with gluten free pancakes by mixing in a variety of flours. I used less of the rice flour and made use of amaranth flour to make up the difference plus the cornstarch they called for. Well I mixed it with the butter and icing sugar as called for in the recipe and tasted the dough and bleck! Nasty flavour and gritty! So I thought it's time to leave the purity of shortbread behind and just save the dough. I splashed in vanilla and then went for the frangelico, my fav liquor. It helped the taste but I wanted to actually taste the flavour of the frangelico and it was barely noticable. I moved on to amaretto and splashed that in. That kicked it up a few notches! I had to add in more rice flour and cornstarch and more icing sugar to make it less sticky. I of course don't measure but just kept messing with it until it seemed the right consistency.
I threw the almond onto the cookies on the 2nd sheet since these cookies will end up on a cookie plate at some point and I wanted to give a heads up that they aren't the usual kind of shortbread.
So in the end they do melt nicely in the mouth, the flavour is Ok with a nice amaretto overtone and the texture I can live with but still a wee bit gritty. I am going to continue to experiment until I find a way to make shortbread that is as good as my whipped shortbread recipe and is gluten free. Those shortbread cookies are worth the belly aches until I crack this problem. Well I'll try and keep it down to 2 cookies, those pains are not much fun.