Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Cookies Featured in New Cookbookby Larry Cox on Nov. 29, 2012, under Uncategorized
Gluten-Free on a Shoestring: Quick & Easy by Nicole Hunn (DaCapo, $19)
When Nicole Hunn discovered that her son had celiac disease, she found herself with a problem. She wanted to prepare food for him that was tasty yet affordable since the price of gluten-free ingredients are sometimes prohibitive for many families living on tight budgets.
Hunn, who lives with her family in Westchester County, New York, began eliminating gluten from the family diet and exploring alternatives. The result was “Gluten-Free on a Shoestring,” her incredibly popular cookbook and a successful blog, glutenfreeonashoestring.com.
Her new cookbook features 100 recipes that are gluten-free and easy to prepare. In addition to the basics of gluten-free cooking and tools and equipment needed, the recipes are divided into eight chapters: Breakfast and Brunch; Breads – Quicker and Quickest; Meatless Mondays; Weekday Workday Dinners; Shortcut Desserts; and Make Your Own Mixes. “Make Your Own Mixes” is my favorite chapter since it gives step-by-step instructions on how to make gluten-free mixes for such things as brownies, cakes, pancakes, cookies, and even scones.
Nicole shows home cooks that they can prepare gluten-free meals without sacrificing taste. For example, family favorites such as chicken pot pie, goldfish crackers, breads and puff pastries are all possible.
I tested two recipes from this cookbook. Since Shepherd Pie is one of my favorite autumn suppers, I tested Hunn’s version which took about half an hour from counter to table. I also love an occasional peanut butter cookie and found the recipe from this cookbook was soft, chewy and took just minutes to fix.
I highly recommend this cookbook. The recipes are accessible and especially geared for people with busy lifestyles.
PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES
Makes about two dozen
1 (16-oz) box gluten-free yellow cake mix (or 1 recipe of make your own mix in this cookbook
1 cup no-stir smooth peanut butter
3 Tbs vegetable shortening
3 Tbs unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature, slightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350F. Line a rimming baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper and set it aside.
Place the cake mix in a large bowl, whisk to break up any lumps, and set it aside.
In a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan, place the peanut butter, shortening, and butter. Stir over medium heat until all ingredients are melted and smooth. Remove from the heat and continue to stir a bit.
Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the peanut butter mixture. Add the eggs and vanilla, and stir until incorporated.
Drop rounded teaspoons of cookie dough about 2 inches apart onto the prepared baking sheet.
Bake the cookies in the center of the oven for about 11 minutes, or until they appear cracked on top and beginning to brown around the edges. Allow to cool until set on a baking sheet. Transfer to a wire rack to cool immediately.