Tag Archives: cookies

Vegan Vanilla Cookies- Recipe Redux

This month’s Recipe Redux started out with an interesting request.

Which kitchen gadget is indispensable in our kitchen?

There are so many that I use on a daily basis, but the one that gets the most use is a very simple scale.

Ever since I made the change from volume measurements to weight based measurements, my baked goods are routinely wonderful. There just isn’t the variations in quantity of flours, sugars or liquids that eyeballing in a cup can create.

This scale is my ideal.  It weighs accurately down to 1 gram.  So I can even weigh out spices.

Ozeri Touch Scale


By weight, all of my baked goods consistently turn out right the first time.

This Vegan Vanilla Cookie recipe is one I use routinely for school events.

No dairy, no gluten, no nuts to keep kiddos away.

Just a crisp, crunchy pair of cookies surrounding tender chocolate filling.

Vegan Vanilla Cookies with Chocolate Creme filling

Vegan Vanilla Cookies- Recipe Redux
  • ¾ cup Earth Balance buttery Vegan stick shortening
  • 10 grams (1 tablespoon)Pixie Dust
  • 8 grams vanilla extract
  • 575 grams cookie flour mix
  • 60 grams water
  • 500 grams (or to taste) mix-ins of your choice- nuts, chocolate chips, candy cane pieces, etc.
  1. Place the mixing bowl onto the scale and zero out the scale. Measure each of the ingredients into the mixer bowl in the order written, zeroing out the scale between each addition.
  2. Once all the ingredients are added to the bowl, place the bowl onto the mixer.
  3. Begin to beat slowly till the mixture comes together.
  4. Once it is all gathered together, increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes.
  5. The dough is then ready to be used as a cookie base or with mix-ins of your choice or rolled into a log 2 inches in diameter for slicing later.
  6. Place finished dough into the fridge to rest for a minimum of 4 hours.
  7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  8. If you held the dough in a ball, roll the dough out to ½ inch. Using cookie cutters, cut out festive shapes. Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet about ½ inch apart.
  9. Bake for 8 minutes
  10. If you mixed in items, then make one inch balls. Place them on parchment or silpat lined cookie sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes or till golden brown. The center will still be soft but will crisp up as they cool.
  11. If you held the dough in a log, just slice the log ½ inch thick and bake on parchment or silpat lined cookie sheets for 8 minutes. If you roll the log in colored sugar, minced nuts or ground chocolate first, then the edges are all decorated when they come out of the oven.


Honey Toffee Crispy Rice Ball Recipe for the Holidays

The image of spheres of sweetness just evoke Christmas time to me.

When I was a child, we occasionally made popcorn balls, huge buttery toffee covered spheres of corn, breaking apart into white sticky crumbles on first bite.

Our family dogs always loved when we made them since we rarely managed to eat them without scattering the kernels everywhere.

I still love the idea of those huge things, just not the mess.

So when I started to think about the upcoming Bellingham Gluten Intolerance cookie exchange, I wanted to evoke the idea of a popcorn ball without the need for it being so big.

I wanted to make it without the corn as well since there are a few folks in the group with a corn reaction.

My eyes fell on a box of Erewhon Crispy Brown rice cereal, swag I brought home from the International Food Bloggers Conference in Santa Monica and I realized that I had solved both problems at once.

The 100% organic cereal has just 3 ingredients, organic brown rice , organic brown rice syrup and sea salt.

The size of the rice grains would bring the dimensions in line with my goal of being bite sized.


Onto the next problem.

I wanted to make the toffee candy part without the corn syrup of my youth.

Why? Simply because the corn syrup of my youth no longer exists.  It is now a genetically modified highly processed sweetener with no redeeming qualities. So unless you find organic corn syrup, I would suggest you just pass it by.

What do I use instead?  Honey has so many of the properties of corn syrup, with the added benefits of some minerals and that special flavor that evokes wildflowers or oranges.

Especially if you use just a bit in a recipe, I find you can simply replace the corn syrup with honey.

Like in this easy recipe.


Honey Toffee Crispy Rice Ball Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Simple enough to make with children, but so much fun too. I prefer the refined sugar free version, my children prefer the sugar.
Recipe type: Cookie, Gluten-Free
Serves: 16
  • ¼ cup organic light brown sugar- packed
  • 2 tablespoons local honey
  • 1 tablespoon organic butter
  • 3 cups of Erewhon Crispy Brown Rice Cereal
  1. Combine the sugar, honey and butter in a large pot over medium heat.
  2. Let the mixture melt and heat till there are small bubbles forming.
  3. Continue to cook till the mixture starts to brown.
  4. Remove from the heat.
  5. Immediately add the Crispy Rice Cereal.
  6. Stir till each grain is coated in the toffee mixture.
  7. Let the pot cool for 1-2 minutes till you can handle the mixture.
  8. Form the Toffee coated Crisp rice balls into bite sized balls.
  9. Place each one on a cookie sheet to finish cooling.
  10. Wrap in a twist of plastic wrap or waxed paper.
  11. Tie the ends of each ball with ribbon if you like.
  12. Makes 16
  13. Quick notes
  14. These are the perfect thing to stir together for a gathering.
  15. Variations
  16. If you desire a different taste treat, use ⅓ cup maple syrup instead of the brown sugar. Bonus it makes them refined sugar free!
  17. I like to add a ¼ cup of coconut, chopped nuts or chocolate chips occasionally. Feel free to mix in your favorite

Almond Cookies- Oh why oh why isn’t almond paste GF?

I wanted to follow this recipe from King Arthur’s catalog for cookies.
One problem though, I couldn’t find almond paste without gluten. Has anyone found a gluten-free one?

So, being undeterred, I proceeded to change the recipe and created a crisp little tasty.

Original Recipe
10 ounces of almond paste
1 cup of sugar
2 large egg whites
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/8 tsp lemon oil

New Recipe

Almond Cookies
1 cup of Bob’s Red Mill almond flour (this one has the skins removed for a golden powder)
2/3 cup sugar
3 eggs
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 drop lemon oil (optional)

In a food processor, blend almond flour and sugar for 2-3 minutes. Add whole eggs one at a time, then add extracts and optional lemon oil.
Place dough in a piping bag and pipe circles onto parchment paper. This is a picture from http://www.joyofbaking.com/AmarettiCookies.html to show how it looks.
Once you have all the dough piped out, place in a 325 degree oven.
Bake 10 minutes then rotate the pans for even browning and bake an additional 10 minutes.
Let cool on parchment and enjoy.

Cream Hill Estates

Cream Hill Estates
My mom always said that if something was made with oats it had to be healthy.
Sometimes that was the rationale for cookies for breakfast, occasionally it explained the box that lived in the car.
Most of the time, it was simply the acknowledgment by my registered nurse mother that oats are really good for you.
Of course, that was before we realized that oats are sometimes a source of cross contamination by wheat.

Before we had to be vigilant about those tiny exposures,

before we were gluten intolerant.

Now we can enjoy the healthy properties of oats yet again.
Cream Hill Estates was another generous donor to the ROCK group booth at the Kid’s Fest.
We made some incredible cookies from their donation of bulk oats.
I used the Gluten-Free Girl’s Oatmeal cookie recipe with a couple of tweaks.

Since i know how many children are following a GF and Casien free lifestyle, I substituted Earth Balance shortening instead of the butter and added 1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder. And since I am a naturopath, I reduced the sugars to 3/4 cup each. I have a real problem with cookies that have a tremendous amount of sugar in them.
All these changes helped with the delicacy of the cookies. They held up very well in transport to the Kid’s fest.

Can any of us just use a recipe? I realize that I want to explore this topic in the future. Seems to me that we all want to change at least one little thing about most recipes in order to make it our own.

Classes to come

I have several classes to come in the future and would love for all of you to attend if you have the time/energy.
I LOVE to teach!

So in order of timing:
Our First for Whatcom Community College!

A Harvest of Gluten Free Desserts
Have you recently discovered that you or someone you know is gluten-intolerant? If so, this class is designed for you with the upcoming holidays in mind when we all enjoy sharing luscious goodies with friends and family. Dr. Jean Layton will unveil three stunning recipes–all are elegant and tasty, use seasonal fresh products, can be prepared ahead, and, best of all, no one will ever guess they are gluten-free! You will sample a divine Molten Lava Cake, a Fall Harvest Fruit Tart with almond paste, and a yummy Pumpkin Cheesecake with glazed pecan topping. Dr. Layton will be joined by Kelle Rankin-Sunter, support leader for Bellingham Gluten Intolerance Group, to answer questions and give tips and tricks to cooking and living with gluten-intolerance. You will leave with a wealth of information and the confidence to serve stunning gluten-free desserts for your friends and family during the holiday season ahead. Class is held at Sehome High School.
F8053 / 1 session
M from 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM
$35 Start Date:10/22
End Date: 10/22
Sehome High School A-9

And at the Community Food Coop
Gluten-Free Baking: The Dark Flours
with Jean McFadden Layton, ND
Tuesday, November 13, 6:30-9 pm
$24 members, $28 non-members
Are all the gluten-free baking recipes you find based on white flours-Tapioca, Potato, White rice, Arrowroot? Are you concerned that these are lacking in nutrition and flavor? Come over to the dark side! Together we’ll explore the world of darker flours and flavors. We’ll create wonderful Teff Baking Powder Biscuits, Toasted Buckwheat Onion Crackers and Apricot Quinoa Bran Muffins. Dr. Layton is a naturopathic physician, former chef, and facilitator of the ROCK (Raising Our Celiac/Gluten-Free Kids) support group. Come prepared to ask all those pesky gluten-free baking questions. All recipes can be made dairy-free as well, if desired.

Gluten-Free Holiday Treats
with Jean McFadden Layton, ND
Tuesday, November 27, 6:30-9 pm
$24 members, $28non-members
Holiday baking is one of the most special gifts you can give a loved one. But how do you bake special treats for a gluten-free friend or family member? Dr. Jean McFadden Layton, naturopathic physician and former chef will lead the group through the conversion of classic recipes to gluten-free. We will create Tangy Lime Bars with a Shortbread Crust, Rugelach (a pastry made with cream cheese dough, and filled with dried fruit, preserves, nuts, etc.) and Butterscotch Brownies–just in time for the annual Bellingham Gluten Intolerance Group cookie swap! If you have a special recipe from your family, feel free to bring it and Dr. Jean will help you convert it to gluten-free.This class is gluten-free but not dairy-free.

ROCK Group meeting

Our next ROCK-Raising our Celiac Kids meeting will be this Saturday August 18th at the Coop Connections building on North Forest St. from 1-3
Hope you can make it!

I love this blogging world. I just got a call yesterday from Yvonne at Glutenfreeda.
She is sending cookie dough for us to test at our meeting!
They are running a buy one and get one free promotion of their pre-made frozen cookie dough.

I think we will be able to bake off samples of all 4 flavors and get to take home a container as well! One of the flavors is even Casein free as well.

I love how generous the manufacturers are for all of us.
This should make the back to school rush just a bit easier for us.

Check out the rest of their website as well, they have loads of gluten-free information as well