Friday, October 30, 2015

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies with a Surprise!


Since the weather has turned into its typical November style - drippy, gray and dreary... naturally I'm drawn into the kitchen to see what I can do to warm up the house and our tummies!  

I bought some gluten-free flour sometime back because I thought I would like to try the gluten-free diet that seems so popular these days.  Unfortunately, I never got around to using the gluten-free flour because it was summer time, and I wasn't apt to spend much time trying new recipes in the kitchen.  So, the gluten-free flour has sat in my pantry... until today! 


One of the recipes on the back of the flour sack was for chocolate chip cookies... and I thought why not?


They came together quite quickly, and before you could say "diet"... it was too late.  They were already cooling on the counter...


... and a few disappeared rather quickly.  Don't ask me how many, cause I have a short memory like that you know!  {smile}


I used a very special ingredient in these cookies... and your first clue *might* be the red cooking wine bottle...


Yes, I used what was inside the red cooking wine bottle... but it was not red cooking wine! Surprise!  It was my own homemade vanilla!  YUM!  Absolutely marvelously easy to make your own vanilla extract!  It takes about six months, and the waiting part may just be the hardest part of the whole experience!  To make your own is quite simple, simply buy a bottle of vodka ...


.... and a few vanilla bean pods... (I used about three vanilla bean pods per cup of vodka)...


Slice the beans in half with a sharp knife...


... and put into clean quart-sized jars, or you could use one large jar if you have it... and then pour in the vodka to cover...


and this is the hardest part - just wait! It is best if the alcohol and vanilla sit for at least a month or two, but longer is even better.  I waited six months, and then strained the vanilla pods out of the alcohol, and poured into a large clean bottle (which happened to be a red cooking wine bottle).

If you have not ever tried to make your own vanilla extract, it is a very easy project that makes a LOT of vanilla!  And the fresh vanilla extract is incredible!  I will never buy vanilla extract again!


And then, while I was on my "gluten-free" kick in the kitchen, I made some of these Grab-n-Go pockets.  Ooh, they are so yummy!  I used my own almond flour in them (which is the leftovers of making almond milk, a post on that here), and a bit of tapioca starch, water and spices, and they can be filled with just about anything - our personal favorite is turkey and cheddar cheese. You can see my post on making these yummy delights here.


I've been making these yummy delights for a while now, trying different flours and combinations, and I've found that the basic ingredient that can't be messed with is the tapioca starch (flour), but you can substitute other flours, for a less "nutty" taste. However, my absolute favorite is following the exact recipe for these Grab-N-Go delights from Hayley's book found here on Amazon.


It may just be the best $3.00 investment you could make today!


Along with a cup of hot tea...


... a wonderful plate of chocolate chip cookies...


... of which their deliciousness could never be known the little secret of gluten-free flour (my kids are still none the wiser... shh!)



I enjoyed a lovely afternoon snack.. satisfied with my gluten-free fun in the kitchen!  

How do you like to spend a dreary drippy gray fall afternoon?

Edited to add: 

Here is the recipe for the Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

(I used Namaste Gluten Free Organic Perfect Flour Blend for these cookies.)

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies 


2-1/2 cups Perfect Flour Blend (or any gluten free blend flour)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 cups chocolate chips (the recipe calls for gluten free chips, but I used the ones I had)
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 375 F.  Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl.  Beat butter, sugars, and vanilla in large bowl until creamy.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Gradually beat in flour mixture.  Stir in chocolate chips and nuts (if using).  Drop by small rounded teaspoon unto ungreased cookie sheets.  Bake for 9-11 minutes, or until golden brown.  Cool on pan for 2 minutes, and then remove to wire racks to cool completely.  Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

Enjoy! 

36 comments:

  1. Oh, how yummy looking!!!! Oh, my...they just look so good and so pretty. The photos are amazing, as usual. Thanks for sharing, sweet friend! You made me hungry! LOL!!! :)

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    1. I was pleasantly surprised, they were even more yummy than they looked! And they felt good on my tummy too - a double win! I have posted the recipe (which wasn't on there originally), if you ever want to try to make the recipe :) Have a blessed and wonderful day dear friend, I always appreciate your comments and sweet visits here!

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  2. Oh Marilyn...your posts are always so sweet and cheerful! And hmmm..m)our chocolate chip cookies look so very delicious...I could have one right now with a cup of tea! {{Smiles}}
    May you have a simply splendid weekend...hugs to you!
    Kelly-Anne

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    1. They were amazingly yummy, even being gluten-free! Yeah! I have edited the post and added the recipe in case you might be interested :) Hope you have had a wonderful day my friend! Always appreciate your visit :)

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  3. Those cookies look quite yummy! My dearest friend is gluten free, so I try any and all gluten free recipes. I am gonna have to look for that flour. Really, I don't notice the difference in taste when it comes to baking certain foods gluten free...only in price! ;0)

    I make my own vanilla too and will never buy store bought ever again. The flavor is so much richer and you get way more for the cost!!

    Your little hot pockets look so good. I'm writing that one down for later. Perfect for a quick snack or lunch.

    I love to bake when it's cold and dreary out. My guys are gone hunting and I have a lot of time to spare. I might get all my holiday baking done while they are gone. Haha! It's rather quiet here in the evenings...too quiet...but tell no one I said that! ;0)

    Have a lovely weekend!
    Hugs, Amy

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    1. I hope your guys had a marvelous time hunting and lots of success :) I know it is a lot of work to get them ready to go, and then you miss then when they are gone too. I did add the recipe for the chocolate chip cookies on the post in case you are interested :) I agree - the price for the flour is a bit prohibitive, but if it is easier on tummies, that counts for a lot. I love it that you too make your own vanilla - isn't it awesome! The one part I hate about making it is buying the alcohol itself, lol, as we don't drink. The hot pocket recipe is awesome, if you buy her little book, she has a bunch of different ideas to make with it. It really is a great recipe. Hope you are having a wonderful week!

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  4. Those cookies look quite yummy! My dearest friend is gluten free, so I try any and all gluten free recipes. I am gonna have to look for that flour. Really, I don't notice the difference in taste when it comes to baking certain foods gluten free...only in price! ;0)

    I make my own vanilla too and will never buy store bought ever again. The flavor is so much richer and you get way more for the cost!!

    Your little hot pockets look so good. I'm writing that one down for later. Perfect for a quick snack or lunch.

    I love to bake when it's cold and dreary out. My guys are gone hunting and I have a lot of time to spare. I might get all my holiday baking done while they are gone. Haha! It's rather quiet here in the evenings...too quiet...but tell no one I said that! ;0)

    Have a lovely weekend!
    Hugs, Amy

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  5. The cooler weather usually finds me craving warm comfort food, including cookies, and yours look great! I have to say that I have never heard of anyone making vanilla extract before, what a cool process, very simple! I may have to give it a shot! Thanks for the recipes and the enjoy!

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    1. It is so easy to make the vanilla extract, and it lasts for such a long time too. It is a very satisfying project, but the hardest part is the waiting time, lol!

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  6. Your cookies look amazing! I would love that recipe for my daughter who is gluten intolerant! :) Also, we have been making our own extract too and it is so fun! Thank you for sharing with us! :)

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    1. I have updated my blog post with the recipe :) I should have thought to do that in the first place! I know that you make a lot of different extracts, and my plan is to make mint extract next, possibly. It is a wonderful thing to be able to make the extract yourself, and I think it tastes far better than any store bought extract. Appreciate you stopping by JES :)

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  7. Those sound wonderful-the cookies and the hand pies! YUM to both. I used to make vanilla sugar...same idea- pour sugar into a close container with sliced vanilla beans and then WAIT and WAIT and WAIT....stirring once a week or so. Amazing topping for sugar cookies- oatmeal-etc.
    I need to make some vanilla!!! I am low on my Mexican vanilla which I so love. Thanks for the "recipe". xo Diana

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    1. Ooh... that does sound amazing! I have never tried that. Putting it on my to-do list for sure! I love topping cakes, cobblers and cupcakes with a bit of sugar, and how amazing if it is vanilla flavored - yum! I also added the recipe for the choc. chip cookies on the post... it is a great one :) Hope you are having a wonderful evening :)

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  8. I've thought about making my own homemade vanilla before. I may just try it!

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    1. It is pretty awesome, and I think it is well worth the wait! :)

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  9. When it's cold and dreary I like to make chili or soup. Those cookies look amazing. I bet your vanilla is fabulous. I've used vanilla beans in the past for flavoring. . .delicious.

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    1. Indeed... soup always tastes so wonderful on these chilly dreary days! The vanilla is really nice to have. I want to try my hand at making some other extract flavors, one of these days, lol! :)

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  10. Save me one of those gluten free cookies. (smile). I might even try my hand at baking. g

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    1. Absolutely! I think you will love them :) They are gentle on the tummy, I thought. I hope you have fun making them! I added the recipe on the post for you, and anyone else interested :)

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  11. You put me in the mood to bake :)

    I love hearing all the chicken stories of your past posts, while I've been catching up with you, and I'm so amazed at all their different personalties. How fun!

    xo,
    rue

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    1. It is the season to bake, indeed! All this cool weather makes me want to stay busy in the kitchen. I am glad you are enjoying reading the escapades of the animals around here. Never a dull moment, for sure! Appreciate your visit Rue! :)

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  12. Those cookies look delicious! I've never considered making my own vanilla until now!

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    1. Oh, it is quite easy to do... the hardest part is waiting for the six months or so while the vanilla beans to work their charm :) Appreciate your visit!

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  13. Marilyn, your cookies look fabulous! Hard to believe they are gluten free. I just bought a new bottle of vanilla last grocery day and boy, was it ever expensive! Only trouble with making my own is I would never be able to talk Hubby into going to the liquor store. He has a 'thing' about that. Maybe I'll ask a friend to get me a bottle. If I get to make my own vanilla, I'll let you know. What do I do on a drippy gray day? I bake! Thanks so much for partying with me today and enjoy this first week of November.


    Autumn blessings,
    Sandi

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    1. Yes, getting the vodka was definitely a challenge for me to, as we don't drink, and live in a small community. As soon as you stick that sucker in your basket, of course your neighbor is going to walk up to your cart, lol! I do understand! Also, I know you live in PEI, and so alcohol is quite expensive there I think, so it might be cost prohibitive for you, I don't know. But it is a fun project to try! It seems baking is the "thing" to do on those drippy gray days!

      I was so glad to join your home party today, and I hope you are enjoying this first week of November too!

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  14. Ya'd never know that your delicious treats are gluten-free!

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    1. No, and my kids are pretty good at sniffing that kind of thing out. They never suspected! :)

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  15. I have always thought it would be fun to make my own vanilla sugar. Maybe this will be the year. I won't be buying vodka, so the sugar will be the way to go for me. The cookies look fabulous as do the grab'n'go pockets. I make many things gluten free. The gluten free recipes have come a long way and many of them are very tasty. Have you tried the Bob's Red Mill 1-to-1 baking flour? It's gluten free and can be used cup for cup in your regular baking recipes. Perfect for Christmas cookies! It doesn't work for bread, however.

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    1. Thanks for your visit, and your wonderful suggestions about baking gluten free! I too want to make vanilla sugar, it sounds awesome. I haven't tried the Bob's Red Mill 1-1 baking flour, but I have tried their almond flour. Yes, gluten free bread is a whole 'nother subject, lol! Appreciate your kind words today!

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  16. Wow - not one but two great recipes. I am going to post this on my face book page too with a link to your blog! So glad you shared as the need for gluten free is huge!

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    1. Thank you Bernideen! You are right, gluten free has brought such hope to people who have suffered for years, and it is great to have some good recipes that don't taste like you're missing out on the good stuff! Appreciate you sharing the link on your FB page :)

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  17. Wow - not one but two great recipes. I am going to post this on my face book page too with a link to your blog! So glad you shared as the need for gluten free is huge!

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  18. Your gluten-free recipes look quite delicious. I can see why the cookies disappeared so quickly.

    I saw your link over at Sandi's. Enjoyed my wee visit.

    Wishing you a beautiful day...
    Brenda

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    1. Thank you so much for your visit... indeed it was wonderful to make such a wonderful treat using GF flour. I hope you are having a wonderful day :)

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  19. I am gluten free and vegan because of allergies most of the time...so that is so fun. Yummy! Love your cookies and blue teacup too!
    Ruth

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    1. I love my little blue teacup too... have had many wonderful little teas and snacks with it! It is nice to know that there are more options out there if you are GF and vegan too, isn't it! Appreciate your visit today, and hope you are having a wonderful day :)

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