Sunday, February 28, 2010

Gluten Free Sugar Free Gingerbread Cookies

These little lovelies are proof that you don't have to give up amazing flavor to eat gluten free and sugar free.  I took them to two different parties this weekend and everyone loved them.  Total sugar and wheat addicts were passing over sinful store bought chocolate covered treats in favor of these simple little cookies.  Now that is saying something when sugar eaters go for your cookies instead of Peeps.  I was even able to provide a vegan party goer with a tasty treat since these cookies happen to be egg less as well.

I first made these for Christmas, using half the dough.  The rest of the dough I discovered recently and it was just as great as it was when it was first made.  So yes the recipe makes a huge number of cookies but it's worth it to save half of them for latter.  I love leaving surprising myself by hiding random things in the freezer that will make me happy when I find it later.  It's one of the small pleasures of life.

The frosting issue is still a problem however.  I've tried twice now to make sugar free frosting without some unwelcome ingredient like cream cheese or boxed pudding mix and neither worked out well at all.  I tried this recipe on Saturday and ended up with a pot of sticky brown goo, I'm still not sure what I did wrong but it didn't work out for me.  So I will keep trying.  If you have a good sugar free frosting recipe please do send it my way.

Really these cookies are so good they don't need frosting though.  They are just spicy enough from the cinnamon and amaranth flour that the agave and molasses even it out for a perfect gingerbread flavor.  They are totally addictive so beware.

Gluten Free Sugar Free Gingerbread Cookies

2 1/3 cups brown rice flour
1 1/2 cups amaranth flour
1 1/2 cups arrowroot powder
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon sea salt

1 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 unsweetened applesauce
1/3 canola oil
2 tablespoons vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350.  Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, stir together the rice flour, amaranth flour, arrowroot powder, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, and salt. 

In a separate bowl, combine the agave nectar, molasses, applesauce, canola oil, vanilla.  Mix well and pour over the dry ingredients.  Stir until the 2 mixtures are thoroughly combined.  Cover and chill the dough 2 hours or more.

Sprinkle your work surface with arrowroot powder.  Divide the chilled dough into 4 equal parts.  Return 3 parts to the refrigerator to keep chilled.  Roll out the dough 1/4 inch thick.  Cut out gingerbread with cookie cutters and place them on the prepared baking sheets.  Bake for 6 to 7 minutes.

The cookies will be slightly soft when they are removed from the oven.  Allow to cool for 5 to 10 minutes then move to cooling racks to cool completely.  These freeze very well in plastic freezer bags.  Makes approximately 5 dozen cookies.

From Baking with Agave Nectar  by Ania Catalano.

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