{gluten-free, vegan} Dark Chocolate Lace Cookies for The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap

Gluten-free, vegan lace cookies

Gluten-free, vegan lace cookies

Every year I say I’m not gonna do any baking events during the holidays.

And then every year I do a few anyway. Because, like today, sometimes you can’t say “no” to making something sweet for a good cause.

When I was young I was nearly home bound for a while because of Lyme Disease, which I’ve been treated for several times since. It wasn’t — and still isn’t — exactly an easy thing to live with. But even as a child, I was aware it could have been harder. Yes, I spent many hours in doctors’ offices, getting IV drips or being bored in waiting rooms while my 6th grade science fair was happening. Yes, it wasn’t easy being alone in my room while my siblings and other kids were at school. But I was never hospitalized. I never had the fear of losing my hair or my body drastically changing. And I knew, even when no one could understand why I wasn’t getting better, that I would one day. I never had the ultimate fear that would have blown my 12-year old mind.

Today’s GREAT FOOD BLOGGER COOKIE SWAP raised $13,778.40 for Cookies for Kids Cancer, which formed in 2008 by 2-year old Liam Witt’s parents Gretchen and Larry. Liam was undergoing treatment for neuroblastoma, and through a bake sale they raised over $400,000 towards research for pediatric cancers. Liam’s diagnosis was a little too early f0r the results of such research, and he passed away in 2011. Now, through Cookies for Kids Cancer, bakers all over the country can participate in bake sales, swaps and events, raising money for this now-national non-profit. I’m psyched to be part of this for the third year in a row.

Gluten-Free Lace Cookies

The swap organizers pair participants up with others of similar dietary preferences, so my three matches were all gluten-free eaters who were dairy-free as well, and ate mostly a vegan diet. I’m obviously very familiar with gluten-free baking, and can replace butter quite easily, but eggs! Oh, my darlings! I am so thankful I can have eggs and marvel at the glorious things they can do when whipped or very slowly simmered and in so many other ways. Which is why I respect the crap outta them, and only buy ones from free-range chickens raised on organic feed.

But, alas, eggs were out of the question. So I turned to a classic cookie my mother’s made from her Toll House baking book for years. It took a few tries to get the ratios set so that they were easy to peel from their foil, resulting in crisp, delicate cookies that are delicious on their own and taste even better sandwiched around dark chocolate, and had straight from the freezer.

Gluten-Free Lace Cookies - The Dusty Baker-2

I sent these out to my matches the last possible moment we were to send them out, hoping they didn’t break in transit. Fingers crossed! And in return I was gifted with three incredibly delicious, special batches of cookies!

The first, Cranberry Orange Sugar Cookies, came from Wendy at Around My Family Table.  They were incredibly fragrant and bursting with fruit, packed in a sweet sugar cookie that we loved on Thanksgiving. Her site is gorgeous – full not only of recipes but of party themes and organization tips to make even the dustiest of bakers appear put together. Check her out.

Then came Chocolate Peppermint Macaroons from Alyssa at Queen of Quinoa. I was psyched to see her name on the package because (and I’m not sure if she remembers this), she used to blog for Easy Eats when I was the blog editor there, and did an entire series for us on cooking with quinoa! Her macarons were divine. I actually normally really don’t like macarons, since I’m not crazy about shredded coconut. Hers, made with nut butters and a far less amount of coconut than I’m used to, were incredibly balanced, and tiny bites of fresh sweetness. I ate half of them. And was thankful that they were small.

Lastly came snickerdoodles from Cindy at A Sweet Simple Life. They were delicious, and I was incredibly impressed that they were gluten-free and vegan, because they were so light and soft despite being absent of the gluten and eggs and buttery we often rely on in baking. They were so good my brother sort of absconded them.

So, cheers to another Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap, raising much-needed funds and bringing the sweet online baking community together.

Happy Holidays,

- Jacqueline

Gluten-Free Lace Cookies - The Dusty Baker-4

{gluten-free, vegan} Dark Chocolate Lace Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 cup gluten-free oats
  • 1/2 cup almond meal / flour
  • 1/3 cup white rice flour
  • 1/4 cup millet flour
  • 2 Tbsp tapioca starch
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 10 Tbsp butter flavored Earth Balance, melted and cooled slightly
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of dark chocolate chips (I use ones from Enjoy Life)

Preheat oven to 350 and line a sheet tray with tin foil (make sure you have a lot of tin foil!).

In a large bowl, whisk together all ingredients up to sugar. Pour in the Earth Balance, corn syrup, almond milk and vanilla, and stir completely to combine.

Get a small bowl with water set by your sheet trays. Using a teaspoon, drop one teaspoon of dough out for each cookie, no more than 12 to a tray. Dip your fingers in the water and flatten the cookies as much as possible – they will spread dramatically, and this will help them do so as equally as possible!

Bake for 6-8 minutes, until the edges just start to brown. Allow to cool completely before gently removing from the foil.

Repeat with remaining dough. It will harden slightly as it sits – that’s ok. It’ll actually help.

When all the cookies are cooled and removed from the trays, melt the chocolate in the microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring in between bursts (after about a minute and a half you should be able to stir the rest of the unmelted chips in to melt, rather than over nuking and burning the chocolate). Use a pastry brush to put a very thin layer of chocolate on the bottom of one cookie and sandwich with another. Repeat for a very long time. They’re worth it.

Give to your favorite aunt, a good friend, or some baking swappers!

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15 Comments

    • The recipe doesn’t call for eggs naturally (that’s why I chose it for vegan peeps) and the corn syrup is needed to make them both spread and stick together like that. Liquid glucose would work as well, if you’re contending with a corn allergy. It’s not quite the same ratio, but works wonderfully. Specialty baking stores will have it, and it’s easy to find online, too. Let me know if you try it!

  1. Pingback: Cookies for a Cause & to Share « Brooklyn Locavore

  2. I WISH I could have tried these, they are simple amazing. I can’t believe they are gluten-free and vegan!! You’re a wonder-woman for sure :) And thanks for reminding me about Easy Eats… I knew your name was familiar. Oh! And I’m so happy to have found your blog and can’t wait to share your scrumptious recipes with all my readers :) xx

  3. Pingback: {gluten-free} Peppermint Patty Brownie Bars | The Dusty Baker

  4. Pingback: The 2013 Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap Round Up Part 2 | the little kitchen

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