With a thin sugar-crisped exterior, a moist interior, and deep milk-chocolate flavor, these cookies are a food allergic’s dream come true.
The story of this cookie: I needed to make a really good double chocolate cookie (I realize that “need” is a strong word, but hey a chocolate cookie craving is a need, am I right?). I was a bit disappointed in the gluten-free double chocolate cookie I had been making. It kinda satisfied the chocolate craving but the taste was still too dark and had a bitter tone. Also, as with most disappointing gluten-free treats, the texture was pretty grainy and dried out within a day. I needed a moist cookie that had a silkier texture, a more milk chocolate flavor, and with a good texture that would last for more than 15 minutes.
After much research and experimentation, I finally hit a winner. The secret to better texture and moisture retention is in a higher ratio of starch than is normally called for in gluten-free baking. A 50% flour and 50% starch mix. Yes! Good results!
I shared some finished cookies with family and friends and took some to networking events. I got a lot of rave reviews on this cookie. Due to such great response, I was tempted to keep this recipe a secret. I’ve been told that I shouldn’t publish this and that it should be the beginning of fantastic cookie sales, and a way to fame and fortune – perhaps a new line of dream cookies for all those who can’t wheat, dairy, eggs, corn, oats, peanuts, treenuts, or rice! (It’s very hard to find gluten-free treats without rice!) I’ve made these with both brown rice flour and sorghum flour, the results were good for both.
I don’t want to have you thinking these are some sort of extremely magical cookie, though. What gets us excited, however, is that this is like having a cookie made from wheat. They’re simply good. For those of us who haven’t had good cookies like that in a long while, it’s pretty magical.
What’s even better – these are pretty economical. Other than the palm oil shortening, the rest of the ingredients are sold for prices that won’t leave you breaking your wallet at $70 in the 7-items or less checkout line.
So, I suppose I could have kept this recipe to myself, but what of all those commercial kitchen start-up costs that I don’t have? And what of all the needs of the dedicated bakers all over the world that need to start their gluten-free baking with a really good cookie?
I’d rather inspire all of you to make these and share them with your friends and family. I’d like to see if your foodie friends who can eat anything even notice that these aren’t anything but fantastic. I’d like to see you delight your co-workers or family members or friends who are usually left out of the food part of celebrations and watch them smile and praise you for your thoughtfulness! It would be great to see these offered in your bake sales, your community events, school functions and fundraisers! The food allergy community will profusely thank you for thinking of them and for making their cookie dreams come true!
Without further adieu:
Dreamy Allergen-Free Double Chocolate Cookies
Set your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, or 175 degrees Celsius.
In a separate bowl, add these dry ingredients together and mix until thoroughly combined:
1 cup (152 grams) of either brown rice flour or sorghum flour (use sorghum for those that cannot tolerate rice)
1/2 cup (56 grams) cocoa powder
1 cup (152 grams) of cornstarch or arrowroot starch (If allergic to corn, use arrowroot starch. I have tried both. The cornstarch results in a slightly silkier texture on the inside of the cookie, but the arrowroot starch is still very nice).
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar
3/4 teaspoon of xanthan or guar gum
Set aside the bowl of dry ingredients.
In your stand mixer, or with hand-held mixer, cream together only these ingredients:
1 cup (180 grams) non-hydrogenated palm oil shortening (Note: do not use butter or coconut oil or any other shortening if making this for general public or school functions. Butter is dairy allergy trigger and coconut oil can trigger treenut allergic reactions, other shortening may contain soybean oil.) Spectrum organic palm-oil shortening can be found here: http://www.spectrumorganics.com/spectrum-naturals/organic-shortening/
1.5 cup (300 grams) light brown sugar (sticky sugar)
4 oz. (105 grams) applesauce (conveniently, this is the equivalent of a snack-sized cup that you can purchase and put in kids’ lunches)
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
Once the shortening, sugar, applesauce, and vanilla extract ingredients are combined, gradually mix in the dry ingredients. The mixture will get very thick. You want this to resemble cookie dough. If appears too dry, add about 1-2 Tablespoons of water.
Once your cookie dough is made, using a large metal spoon, fold in:
1/2 cup (90 grams) Enjoy Life Allergen-Free mini chocolate chips and
1/2 cup (90 grams) Enjoy Life Allergen-Free chocolate chunks. More information on Enjoy Life products can be found here: http://enjoylifefoods.com/
Scoop dough onto cookie sheet lined with parchment paper (or lightly coated with the palm oil shortening), and flatten to 1 inch disks.
Bake for 7-10 minutes or until cookies look puffy and cracked a little.
Remove cooks from oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes on the baking pan before transferring to a plate or wire rack to cool completely. If you try to transfer them too soon, they will fall apart. Alternatively, you can pull the entire parchment sheet of cookies off of the pan and onto the counter to cool so you can quickly reuse the pan. Cookies will rest down and look more cracked as they cool.
Repeat the baking process for remaining dough.
Makes approximately 18-20 cookies.