Category Archives: Cookies

Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies

Five Gumdrop Cookies in front of a china tea pot and a pink and purple china cup and saucer
Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies

These gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies are very easy to make and are super tasty.  They are soft and chewy, studded with colorful fruit-flavored gumdrops.

Three Gumdrop Cookies in front of an antique flour sifter
Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies

To keep the cut gumdrops from sticking together, toss them with two tablespoons of powdered sugar which you may know as icing sugar or confectioner’s sugar. This will also add a layer of sweetness to the cookies.

Wire rack with seven gumdrop cookies placed before an antique flour sifter and mixing bowl
Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies

Ensure the ingredients are at room temperature before mixing up a batch of these Gumdrop Cookies.  I find placing the cookie dough in the refrigerator to chill for about 45 minutes makes the dough less sticky and helps to prevent the cookies from spreading when they are placed in the oven.

Stack of Gumdrop Cookies in front of a pink and purple china cup and saucer sitting on a book
Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies

These are great lunchbox cookies and are also a tasty treat with a fine cup of tea.  They make a showy addition to sweet trays, too.  These cookies freeze well.

Tray of Gumdrop Cookies
Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies

[Printable recipe follows at end of posting]

Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies

Ingredients:

¾ cup butter, softened at room temperature
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp powdered sugar (aka icing sugar or confectioner’s sugar)
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
½ tsp almond flavoring

1¼ cup gluten-free all-purpose flour
¼ cup coconut flour
¼ cup almond flour
1 tsp zanthan gum
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda

1 cup coarsely chopped fruit-flavored gumdrops
2 tbsp powdered sugar (aka icing sugar or confectioner’s sugar)

Method:

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.  In small bowl, toss the gumdrops with 2 tablespoons of the powdered sugar, ensuring all cut sides of the gumdrops have been coated.

In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter until light and fluffy.  Gradually blend in the granulated and powdered sugars. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla and almond flavoring.

In separate bowl, sift together the three flours, zanthan gum, baking powder, and baking soda.  With mixer on slow speed, mix the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture until well blended.  Mix in the gumdrops by hand.

Cover and place dough in refrigerator for approximately 45 minutes. Using two tableware teaspoons, scoop chilled dough with one spoon while using the second spoon to slide the dough onto the prepared baking sheets. Space the cookies approximately 2” apart. Bake for approximately 12-13 minutes, just until cookies are barely set. Do not overbake. Remove cookies from oven and let cool on cookie sheet for 3-4 minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely. Store in airtight container or freeze for longer storage.

Yield: Apx. 3 dozen

Gumdrop Cookie on saucer of pink and purple china cup and saucer
Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies

 

Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies

Buttery, soft, and chewy, these gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies are studded with colorful fruit-flavored gumdrops
Course Dessert
Keyword Gluten-free Gumdrop Cookies, Gumdrop Cookies
Author My Island Bistro Kitchen

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup butter softened at room temperature
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar aka icing sugar or confectioner’s sugar
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ½ tsp almond flavoring
  • cup gluten-free all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup coconut flour
  • ¼ cup almond flour
  • 1 tsp zanthan gum
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped fruit-flavored gumdrops
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar aka icing sugar or confectioner’s sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set aside. In small bowl, toss the gumdrops with 2 tablespoons of the powdered sugar, ensuring all cut sides of the gumdrops have been coated.
  2. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter until light and fluffy. Gradually blend in the granulated and powdered sugars. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla and almond flavoring.
  3. In separate bowl, sift together the three flours, zanthan gum, baking powder, and baking soda. With mixer on slow speed, mix the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture until well blended. Mix in the gumdrops by hand.
  4. Cover and place dough in refrigerator for approximately 45 minutes. Using two tableware teaspoons, scoop chilled dough with one spoon while using the second spoon to slide the dough onto the prepared baking sheets. Space the cookies approximately 2” apart. Bake for approximately 12-13 minutes, just until cookies are barely set. Do not overbake. Remove cookies from oven and let cool on cookie sheet for 3-4 minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely. Store in airtight container or freeze for longer storage.

Recipe Notes

Yield: Apx. 3 dozen

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Classic Raspberry Linzer Cookies

Linzer Cookies
Classic Raspberry Linzer Cookies

Linzer cookies, so-named for the Austrian Linzer Torte they replicate, are simply two shortbread-type cookies sandwiched together with jam.  The cookies are commonly filled with raspberry jam which produces a very showy cookie. These cookies are traditionally found on sweet trays at Christmas but they are wonderful any time of the year.  So, there is no need to wait for Christmas to enjoy them! You can legitimately actually have two cookies without feeling guilty when you eat one of these sandwich cookies – bonus!

Raspberry Linzer Cookies
Raspberry Linzer Cookies

The Linzer Torte, said to be the oldest cake recipe in the world and dating back to the late 1600s, is believed to have originated in the City of Linz in Austria.  Made with a rich buttery crust of primarily butter, flour, and ground nuts, the torte was traditionally filled with black currant preserves and topped with a lattice crust that allowed the preserves to shine through.

Linzer cookies are a take on the Linzer Torte put into a cookie format.  Two cookies are sandwiched together with jam and the top cookie is generously dusted with powdered sugar making it very showy. To keep the jam filling visible, a simple cut-out is made in the top cookie.

Linzer Cookies
Raspberry Linzer Cookies

The ingredients for the cookies are fairly basic and the texture closely resembles shortbread.  That is to say, the cookies have a short, crisp, yet tender texture.

Linzer Cookies
Texture of Linzer Cookies

While Linzer Cookies are obviously different than a torte, several of the ingredients are the same – butter, flour, and ground almonds.  I add small amounts of cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves but in such small amounts that the flavours are very subtle. Some grated orange rind, vanilla, and almond flavoring are the only other injections of flavour into the rich buttery dough.

Linzer Cookies
Classic Raspberry Linzer Cookies

To make these cookies gluten free, replace the 2¼ cups all-purpose flour with an equal amount of gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour.

Linzer Cookies
Raspberry Linzer Cookies

Tips for Making Linzer Cookies

  • Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature.
  • Do not overmix or overhandle the dough. Just mix it enough so it will cling together.
  • Divide the dough in half and form each half into a disc. Wrap the discs, separately, in plastic wrap and chill the dough for 35-45 minutes or until dough is firm enough to roll out.  This will make the dough less sticky and easier to handle. The dough can be made up to a day ahead but it will need to be removed from the refrigerator for several minutes before rolling it out as it will be far too hard to allow the dough to be rolled out without it cracking or breaking apart.
  • Special Linzer cookie cutters (seen at top of photo below) exist for cutting out these two-part cookies. These cutters have a plunger attachment that allows different interchangeable cut-out inserts to be used to cut out small shapes, like hearts, circles, and diamonds, in the centers of cookies.  This cut-out, of course, allows the pretty jam or preserves to show through. If you don’t have a Linzer cutter, simply cut out the shape of the cookie with any 2” cookie cutter and then use a small 1” cookie cutter to cut out the center hole in half the cookie batch.  Many sets of nesting cookie cutters have various sizes of cutters suitable for this purpose.
Linzer Cookies
Raspberry Linzer Cookies

 

  • Work with one dough disc at a time. Roll the dough to about 1/8” thick.  Two cookies will be sandwiched together so about 1/8” thickness is thick enough for each cookie half.  Make sure you cut out an even number of whole cookies and cookies with the cut-outs so you will have matched pairs.
  • The cookies, once cut out and placed 1” apart on parchment-lined baking sheets need to go back into the refrigerator for about 20 minutes. This is an important step because the fat in the chilled cookies will take longer to melt once the cookies are placed in the oven than would room-temperature cookies. The chilling will mean the cookies will spread less as they bake and we want these cookies to hold their shape perfectly, especially the cut-out centers in the top cookies.
  • Do not overbake the cookies. Bake them for 11-13 minutes, just until the cookies are set and have a light golden color.
  • Dust the cut-out cookie tops with powdered sugar BEFORE placing them over the filled cookie bottoms (a small fine wire mesh sieve works well for this or a small metal mesh-topped can can also be used (seen in photo above)). If you wait to sugar-coat the cookies until after they have been assembled, the sugar will cover the jam filling and cause it to become cloudy and lose its clear, shimmery appearance.
Linzer Cookies
Sugar-dusted Cookie Tops for Linzer Cookies

 

  • Any red jam or black currant jam can be used in these cookies. My preference is to use raspberry as the flavour blends well with the ground almonds and the orange flavoring in the cookies.  I do recommend, whatever type of jam is used, that it be seedless. Do not spread the jam right to the outside edge of the bottom cookies as the jam will ooze out.  Keep the jam in the center of the cookie bottoms.  When the top cookie is placed on the jam-filled bottom, it will spread the jam further out in the cookie.  No jam should be visible on the outside edges of Linzer cookies.  If a bit more jam is desired in the cookies, use a tiny coffee spoon to carefully drop a bit more jam into the center of the assembled sandwich cookies.
Linzer Cookies
Classic Raspberry Linzer Cookies

 

  • It is not recommended to freeze the assembled cookies for a couple of reasons. First, the jam is likely to soak into the cookies, especially as they thaw.  This will cause the cookies to lose their crisp texture.  Second, it takes up more container and freezer space to freeze the cookies in single layers so that the powdered sugar does not fall off the cookies or transfer onto the jam-filled centers, marring the look of the cookies.
  • Store filled cookies in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
Linzer Cookies
Classic Raspberry Linzer Cookies

[Printable recipe follows at end of posting]

Classic Raspberry Linzer Cookies

Ingredients:

2¼ cups all-purpose flour (to make them gluten free, substitute an equal amount of gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour
¾ cup finely ground almonds
1 tbsp cornstarch
¾ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp cardamom
Pinch cloves

1 cup butter, room temperature (no substitutes)
2/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tbsp powdered sugar (aka icing sugar or confectioner’s sugar)
2 large egg yolks, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
¼ tsp almond flavoring
1 tsp finely grated orange rind

Seedless raspberry jam (1/2  – ¾ cup)

Additional powdered sugar for dusting cookies

Method:

Sift dry ingredients together.  Set aside.

In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream the butter at medium speed until fluffy and pale yellow.  Slowly add the sugars and cream well for 2-3 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary. Reduce speed to low and add the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Add the vanilla and almond flavoring as well as the grated orange rind. Mix to combine well.

With mixer set on low speed, gradually blend in the dry ingredients, mixing just until dry ingredients are fully incorporated.  Do not overmix.  Turn dough on to a lightly floured surface and gather the dough, working it just enough that it clings together.  Divide the dough into two equal portions and form each half into a round disc.  Wrap discs separately in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 35-45 minutes, or until firm enough to roll.

On lightly floured surface, roll a dough disc into 1/8” thickness.  Using a 2” Linzer cookie cutter (either straight edged or fluted), cut cookies from one half the dough.  Gather dough scrapes and continue cutting out the cookies until the dough is used up. These will be the cookie bottoms. Roll out remaining dough disc in the same manner for the cookie tops.  To cut out the cookie tops, use the same Linzer cutter but fitted with one of the insert shapes to cut out a small 1” shape in the center of each cookie. Repeat until an equal number of cookies with cut out centers have been cut as there are whole cookies. If you do not have a Linzer cookie cutter, use any 2” cookie cutter and a 1” cutter of any shape for the center cut-out of half the cookies.

Place cookies about 1” apart on parchment-lined baking sheets.  Refrigerate cookies for about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°F. Bake cookies on the middle oven rack for 11-13 minutes, or just until cookies are set and a light golden color. Do not overbake. Remove cookies from oven and cool on baking sheet for about 3-4 minutes then, using a flat lifter/spatula, transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.

To assemble sandwich cookies, place the cookie halves that have the cut-out centers on a cutting board (these will be the top cookies).  Dust the cookies generously with sifted powdered sugar, covering the cookies with an even coating of the sugar.  On the flat side (i.e., the underneath side) of the whole cookies, spread about 1 – 1½ teaspoons jam in the center of each cookie, being careful not to spread the jam all the way to the cookie edges (stay within ¼” of the cookie edge).  Place the cut-out sugar-dusted cookie tops over the jam-spread bottom cookies to create the sandwich. If desired, use a tiny spoon to carefully add a bit more jam into the center cut-out of each cookie.

Store cookies in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.  To freeze cookies, package unassembled cookies between layers of parchment paper in an airtight container.  Bring cookies to room temperature before filling with jam and assembling as above described.

Yield:  Approximately 26 sandwiched cookies.

Classic Raspberry Linzer Cookies

Sugar-dusted jam-filled Linzer Cookies have a tender and crisp texture and buttery flavour complimented by ground almonds and subtle spice seasonings.
Course Dessert
Keyword Linzer Cookies
Servings 26
Author My Island Bistro Kitchen

Ingredients

  • cups all-purpose flour (to make them gluten free substitute an equal amount of gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour
  • ¾ cup finely ground almonds
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • ¾ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp cardamom
  • Pinch cloves
  • 1 cup butter room temperature (no substitutes)
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tbsp powdered sugar aka icing sugar or confectioner’s sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ¼ tsp almond flavoring
  • 1 tsp finely grated orange rind
  • Seedless raspberry jam 1/2 – ¾ cup
  • Additional powdered sugar for dusting cookies

Instructions

  1. Sift dry ingredients together. Set aside.
  2. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream the butter at medium speed until fluffy and pale yellow. Slowly add the sugars and cream well for 2-3 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary. Reduce speed to low and add the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla and almond flavoring as well as the grated orange rind. Mix to combine well.
  3. With mixer set on low speed, gradually blend in the dry ingredients, mixing just until dry ingredients are fully incorporated. Do not overmix. Turn dough on to a lightly floured surface and gather the dough, working it just enough that it clings together. Divide the dough into two equal portions and form each half into a round disc. Wrap discs separately in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 35-45 minutes, or until firm enough to roll.
  4. On lightly floured surface, roll a dough disc into 1/8” thickness. Using a 2” Linzer cookie cutter (either straight edged or fluted), cut cookies from one half the dough. Gather dough scrapes and continue cutting out the cookies until the dough is used up. These will be the cookie bottoms. Roll out remaining dough disc in the same manner for the cookie tops. To cut out the cookie tops, use the same Linzer cutter but fitted with one of the insert shapes to cut out a small 1” shape in the center of each cookie. Repeat until an equal number of cookies with cut out centers have been cut as there are whole cookies. If you do not have a Linzer cookie cutter, use any 2” cookie cutter and a 1” cutter of any shape for the center cut-out of half the cookies.
  5. Place cookies about 1” apart on parchment-lined baking sheets. Refrigerate cookies for about 20 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°F. Bake cookies on the middle oven rack for 11-13 minutes, or just until cookies are set and a light golden color. Do not overbake. Remove cookies from oven and cool on baking sheet for about 3-4 minutes then, using a flat lifter/spatula, transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  7. To assemble sandwich cookies, place the cookie halves that have the cut-out centers on a cutting board (these will be the top cookies). Dust the cookies generously with sifted powdered sugar, covering the cookies with an even coating of the sugar. On the flat side (i.e., the underneath side) of the whole cookies, spread about 1 – 1½ teaspoons jam in the center of each cookie, being careful not to spread the jam all the way to the cookie edges (stay within ¼” of the cookie edge). Place the cut-out sugar-dusted cookie tops over the jam-spread bottom cookies to create the sandwich. If desired, use a tiny spoon to carefully add a bit more jam into the center cut-out of each cookie.
  8. Store cookies in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. To freeze cookies, package unassembled cookies between layers of parchment paper in an airtight container. Bring cookies to room temperature before filling with jam and assembling as above described.

Recipe Notes

Yield: Approximately 26 sandwiched cookies.

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Linzer Cookies
Classic Raspberry Linzer Cookies

 

The Rumrunners – Rum and Raisin Cookies

Rum and Raisin Cookies
The Rumrunners – Rum and Raisin Cookies

The folklore of rum running during prohibition in Prince Edward Island (PEI) is the stuff of which legends and ballads are made.  In PEI, so the stories go, locals would set sail in fishing boats, under the cover of darkness, and head out to sea to meet ships from St. Pierre and Miquelon carrying rum.  The locals, known as rumrunners, would buy the rum and head back to Island shores with the smuggled contraband liquor.

Now, these Rum and Raisin Cookies would probably not have been made during prohibition but the legend of the rumrunners has inspired me to name them the Rumrunners.

Rum and Raisin Cookies
The Rumrunners – Rum and Raisin Cookies

These cookies are made from a rolled cookie dough to which rum-soaked raisins have been added.  Dark rum should be used for the soaking of the raisins as it will generate the most depth of flavour (as opposed to a light or amber rum).  Simply soak the raisins in the rum for a few minutes, then simmer them on the stove.  Let the raisins stand for about an hour after they have simmered.  This should see most of the rum soaked into the now plump raisins.  However, the raisins should be drained in a wire-mesh sieve to remove any excess rum.  Do not add any of the rum liquid to the dough as it is not intended to have any liquid, apart from the egg yolk, in it. The subtle rum flavour comes from the rum-soaked raisins.

The dough will be too soft to roll out after it has just been mixed.  Chill it in the refrigerator, for 15-20 minutes or just until it is firm enough to roll out.

Rum and Raisin Cookies
The Rumrunners – Rum and Raisin Cookies

Choose a relatively simple cookie cutter, about 1 3/4″ – 2″ in diameter, for these cookies.  These delicately crisp and rich buttery cookies freeze well and are a great addition to any sweet tray.

The Rum Runners - Rum and Raisin Cookies
The Rumrunners – Rum and Raisin Cookies

The Rumrunners’ Rum and Raisin Cookies also make a great gift.

Rum and Raisin Cookies
The Rumrunners – Rum and Raisin Cookies

I think the rumrunners would have approved of these cookies!

Rum and Raisin Cookies
The Rumrunners – Rum and Raisin Cookies

[Printable recipe follows at end of posting]

The Rumrunners’ Rum and Raisin Cookies

Ingredients:

½ cup sultana raisins
¼ cup dark rum

2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tsp cornstarch
¼ tsp baking power
¼ tsp cardamom
1/8 tsp salt

½ cup butter
¾ cup icing sugar (aka powdered sugar or confectioner’s sugar)
1 large egg yolk, room temperature
1 tsp finely grated orange rind
1 tsp vanilla

Method:

Combine raisins and rum in small saucepan. Let stand for 15 minutes, stirring once or twice, then bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Reduce heat to low and boil gently for approximately 1 -2 minutes, stirring a couple of times.  Do not boil raisins dry. Remove from heat, cover, and let raisins stand for about 1 hour.  Drain raisins in small wire mesh sieve and discard any remaining rum (there should be very little).

In small bowl, sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, cardamom, and salt.  Set aside.

In bowl of stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter for about 1 minute.  Gradually, add the icing sugar and beat just until the butter and sugar are combined.  Blend in the egg yolk, orange rind, and vanilla, mixing just until the ingredients are incorporated.  Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until blended.  Stir in the drained raisins. Do not add any remaining rum from raisins to the cookie dough.

Gently gather the dough together just enough to form it into two balls.  With hands, flatten each ball into disk shape.  Wrap in plastic wrap and chill dough in refrigerator for about 15-20 minutes, or until dough is firm enough to roll.  Line large baking sheet(s) with parchment paper.  Preheat oven to 300°F.  Working with each disk separately, roll the dough ¼“ thick on a lightly floured surface.  Using a 1¾” – 2” cookie cutter, cut cookies into desired shapes, cutting the cookies as close together as possible to minimize the dough scraps that will need to be re-worked and re-rolled.  Note that re-working and re-rolling the dough scraps more than 2-3 times may result in cookies that have a tough texture.  Place cookies, about 1” apart on cookie sheet(s). Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until cookies are set, turning pan half-way through the baking process.  Cool cookies on baking sheet(s) for 3-4 minutes then, using a small lifter, transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.

Store cookies in airtight container at room temperature for up to a week or freeze between layers of waxed paper in airtight container for longer storage.

Yield:  Approximately 4 – 4½ dozen

The Rumrunners’ Rum and Raisin Cookies

Rum-soaked raisins add “spirit” to these delicately crisp and buttery cookies that have a hint of orange flavor and cardamom spice.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Author My Island Bistro Kitchen

Ingredients

  • ½ cup sultana raisins
  • ¼ cup dark rum
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tsp cornstarch
  • ¼ tsp baking power
  • ¼ tsp cardamom
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • ½ cup butter
  • ¾ cup icing sugar (aka powdered sugar or confectioner’s sugar)
  • 1 large egg yolk, room temperature
  • 1 tsp finely grated orange rind
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Instructions

  1. Combine raisins and rum in small saucepan. Let stand for 15 minutes, stirring once or twice, then bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and boil gently for approximately 1 -2 minutes, stirring a couple of times. Do not boil raisins dry. Remove from heat, cover, and let raisins stand for about 1 hour. Drain raisins in small wire mesh sieve and discard any remaining rum (there should be very little).
  2. In small bowl, sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, cardamom, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter for about 1 minute. Gradually, add the icing sugar and beat just until the butter and sugar are combined. Blend in the egg yolk, orange rind, and vanilla, mixing just until the ingredients are incorporated. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until blended. Stir in the drained raisins. Do not add any remaining rum from raisins to the cookie dough.
  4. Gently gather the dough together just enough to form it into two balls. With hands, flatten each ball into disk shape. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill dough in refrigerator for about 15-20 minutes, or until dough is firm enough to roll. Line large baking sheet(s) with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 300°F. Working with each disk separately, roll the dough ¼“ thick on a lightly floured surface. Using a 1¾” - 2” cookie cutter, cut cookies into desired shapes, cutting the cookies as close together as possible to minimize the dough scraps that will need to be re-worked and re-rolled. Note that re-working and re-rolling the dough scraps more than 2-3 times may result in cookies that have a tough texture. Place cookies, about 1” apart on cookie sheet(s). Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until cookies are set, turning pan half-way through the baking process. Cool cookies on baking sheet(s) for 3-4 minutes then, using a small lifter, transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.
  5. Store cookies in airtight container at room temperature for up to a week or freeze between layers of waxed paper in airtight container for longer storage.

Recipe Notes

Yield: Approximately 4 – 4½ dozen

 

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Rum and Raisin Cookies
The Rumrunners’ Rum and Raisin Cookies

Gluten Free Snickerdoodle Cookie Recipe

Snickerdoodles
Gluten Free Snickerdoodle Cookies

If you like cookies that are super tasty but not overly sweet then you will like these gluten free snickerdoodle cookies. They sport a lovely soft crumb texture and have superb flavor with the cardamon and nutmeg in the cookies and then the cinnamon-sugar mixture in which they are rolled.

I have been doing a lot of recipe development and testing for gluten free baked goods and have developed several cookie recipes that are suitable for those that have gluten sensitivity or intolerance.  In my view, there is no need for those following a gluten-free diet to be deprived of some fine tasting baked products.

Snickerdoodles
Gluten Free Snickerdoodle Cookies

This snickerdoodle cookie recipe does not take any unusual or difficult-to-find ingredients.  It calls for gluten free all-purpose flour and a small amount of almond flour. The almond flour adds both flavor and a lovely texture to baked products. It is not an inexpensive flour, by any means, but fortunately not a lot of it is needed to achieve great results.

When using gluten free flours and zanthan gum, it is very important that they be combined very well before incorporating them into the batter. I recommend sifting these products along with the leavening and any spices together into a large bowl  and then whisk them really well.

The snickerdoodle cookie dough will be very soft when all ingredients are mixed in.  Cover the dough and place it in the refrigerator for 40-60 minutes to allow it to firm up so it will be easier to form the cookie balls.

Snickerdoodle Cookies
Gluten Free Snickerdoodle Cookies

I’m a big fan of digital scales for my kitchen work. I like the look of uniform cookies so I often use the scales to ensure that the same amount of dough goes into each cookie.  I use approximately 20grams, or about 3/4 ounce, of dough for each cookie.  Roll the cookie balls in the cinnamon-sugar mixture and place them on the prepared cookie sheets (parchment lined), spacing them at least 2 1/2 inches apart. Do not flatten the cookie balls – they will automatically flatten as they bake.  These cookies usually bake in about 10 minutes.  Snickerdoodles are great picnic cookies as they travel well.

Cookies
Gluten Free Snickerdoodle Cookies

Because of their soft texture, they are an ideal choice for homemade ice cream sandwiches.

Homemade Ice Cream Sandwiches
Snickerdoodle Ice Cream Sandwiches

And, of course, they are always a popular choice for the cookie jar or lunch box. These cookies freeze really well and are great to have on hand.

[Printable recipe follows at end of posting]

Gluten-free Snickerdoodle Cookies

 Ingredients:

½ cup butter, softened at room temperature
6 tbsp granulated sugar
6 tbsp brown sugar
1 extra-large egg
½ tsp vanilla
¼ tsp almond flavoring
¼ tsp lemon flavoring

1 1/3 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour
¼ cup almond flour
¼ tsp zanthan gum
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp cream of tartar
¼ tsp cardamom
1/8 tsp nutmeg

1 tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Method:

Preheat oven to 375°F.  Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.

In bowl of stand mixer, cream butter with 6 tbsp granulated sugar and 6 tbsp brown sugar.  Beat in the egg and vanilla along with the almond and lemon flavorings.

In separate bowl, sift together the next 9 dry ingredients then whisk the mixture several times to ensure the ingredients are well incorporated.  Mix into creamed mixture until well blended.  Cover and place dough in refrigerator for 40-60 minutes to firm. Shape into balls using about 20g, or about .75 oz, of dough.  Mix the remaining tablespoon of sugar with the cinnamon in small bowl.  Roll cookie balls in sugar mixture and place on prepared cookie sheets, spacing cookies at least 2½ inches apart.  Do not flatten cookie balls. Bake for approximately 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool on cookie sheet for 3-4 minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely. These cookies freeze well.

Yield: Apx. 2 dozen

These cookies are supremely good with a glass of cold milk.

Snickerdoodle Cookies
Gluten Free Snickerdoodle Cookies

Gluten Free Snickerdoodle Cookie Recipe

Yield: Apx. 2 dozen

A gluten free version of an old-fashioned favorite cookie, lightly spiced with cardamon and nutmeg, and rolled in cinnamon sugar. A cookie jar favorite for sure!

Ingredients

  • ½ cup butter, softened at room temperature
  • 6 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 6 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 extra-large egg
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • ¼ tsp almond flavoring
  • ¼ tsp lemon flavoring
  • 1 1/3 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup almond flour
  • ¼ tsp zanthan gum
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp cream of tartar
  • ¼ tsp cardamom
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In bowl of stand mixer, cream butter with 6 tbsp granulated sugar and 6 tbsp brown sugar. Beat in the egg and vanilla along with the almond and lemon flavorings.
  3. In separate bowl, sift together the next 9 dry ingredients then whisk the mixture several times to ensure the ingredients are well incorporated. Mix into creamed mixture until well blended. Cover and place dough in refrigerator for 40-60 minutes to firm. Shape into balls using about 20g, or about .75 oz, of dough. Mix the remaining tablespoon of sugar with the cinnamon in small bowl. Roll cookie balls in sugar mixture and place on prepared cookie sheets, spacing cookies at least 2½ inches apart. Do not flatten cookie balls. Bake for approximately 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool on cookie sheet for 3-4 minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely. These cookies freeze well.
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Snickerdoodle Cookies
Gluten Free Snickerdoodle Cookies
Snickerdoodle Cookies

 

Gluten-free Lemon-filled Thumbprint Cookies

Thumprint Cookies
Gluten-free Lemon-filled Thumbprint Cookies

There are different versions of thumbprint cookies. Some are rolled in crushed nuts, others in granulated sugar, and still others in coconut. Some are filled with jam and others with lemon curd.  I use lemon curd as the filling and roll my thumbprint cookies in coconut to complement the coconut flour used in these gluten-free cookies.  The coconut toasts lovely as the cookies bake.

I find that using only a gluten-free all-purpose flour in baking results in a somewhat underwhelming flavor for my taste. That’s why I often add some almond and/or coconut flour to my baked products. Either or both contribute flavor and I think produce better textured products.

As I tested this newly-developed recipe, I found that a hint of cardamon gives a subtle and pleasing flavor to the cookies. Somewhere between a one-quarter teaspoon and a half teaspoon is about the right amount so….either a heaping 1/4 teaspoon or a scant 1/2 teaspoon of cardamon will work.  The cardamon pairs well with the lemon curd used as a filling/topping on the thumbprints.

Thumbprint Cookies
Gluten-free Lemon-filled Thumbprint Cookies

Because some gluten-free flours, like coconut flour for example, absorb a lot of liquid, I use one whole extra-large egg as well as the yolk from one large egg to ensure there is enough moisture in the cookie dough.  I generally have three different sizes of eggs in my refrigerator (extra large, large, and medium), especially when I am doing gluten-free baking. This is because sometimes two extra-large eggs would be too much but more than one is needed. That’s when I use either large or medium-sized eggs to supplement the egg content in gluten-free baking or, sometimes as in the case with these cookies, I just use a certain size of egg yolk because that is all that is needed. Save the white from the large egg in this recipe as it will be needed to make the egg wash in which to dip each ball before rolling in coconut. This egg wash adheres the coconut to the cookies.

Thumprint Cookies
Gluten-free Lemon-filled Thumbprint Cookies

The cookie dough benefits from being chilled for about 30 minutes in the refrigerator before being formed into balls that are about 1″ in diameter.  This allows the dough to firm up and makes the shaping of the cookie balls easier. For these cookies, I use 3/4 oz of dough. I recommend the use of a digital kitchen scale to weigh out portions of the dough to ensure uniformity of size in cookies. You can, of course, “eyeball” the amount of dough for each ball but, if you want perfectly uniform cookies, I recommend weighing the dough, at least for the first 2-3 cookie balls to get a sense of how much dough is needed for each cookie.

Thumbprint Cookies
Gluten-free Lemon-filled Thumbprint Cookies

These cookies have a soft tender crumb and are not too sweet. The lemon curd adds tremendous flavor and texture to the cookies. Click here for my recipe for the lemon curd. To make the indent in each cookie for the curd, use either the tip of your thumb, the round end of a wooden spoon, or the round bowl of a ¼ tsp measuring spoon. Gently press an indent into the center of each cookie, pressing about half-way down through the cookie.  Bake the cookies and, as soon as they come out of the oven, immediately fill each cookie with about 1 teaspoonful of lemon curd. If lemon curd is not to your taste, simply use your favorite jam as the filling.

Gluten-free Lemon-filled Thumbprint Cookies

Ingredients:

½ cup butter
½ cup granulated sugar
1 extra large egg
1 large egg yolk (save the egg white for the egg wash)
1 tsp vanilla
¼ tsp almond flavoring

1 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour
½ cup almond flour
¼ cup coconut flour
1¾ tsp zanthan gum
1/8 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
Scant ½ tsp cardamom

3 oz flaked coconut
1 large egg white beaten with 1 tbsp water

Apx. ½ cup lemon curd

Method:

Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

Using the paddle attachment in the bowl of stand mixer, cream the butter.  Gradually add the sugar.  Beat well.  Add the egg and extra egg yolk.  Beat. Mix in the vanilla and almond flavoring.

In separate bowl, combine the flours, zanthan gum, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cardamom.  Whisk together very well.  Blend into the butter-sugar-egg mixture. Mix well.  Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill dough for 30 minutes in refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place coconut in one small bowl and the beaten egg white and water mixture into a second bowl.  Pinch off pieces of the dough and roll into balls, approximately 1” in diameter (if you weigh the dough, each piece should weigh ¾ oz.) Dip each cookie ball in the egg white wash then roll in the coconut.  Place cookies on prepared baking sheet, arranging them about 2” apart.  Using thumb tip, end of wooden spoon, or the round bowl of a ¼ tsp measuring spoon, gently press an indent into the center of each cookie.  Bake for 20-22 minutes.  Immediately fill each cookie with about 1 teaspoonful of lemon curd as soon as the cookies come out of the oven.  If indents are not clearly defined in each cookie, gently reform them using one of the afore-mentioned methods.  Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.  Store in airtight container. If desired, add a light dusting of confectioner’s sugar to the cookies just at the time of serving.

Yield:  Apx. 22 cookies

Note: Jam of choice may be substituted for the lemon curd, if desired.

Gluten-free Lemon-filled Thumbprint Cookies

Yield: Apx. 22 cookies

A delightful gluten-free cookie with a soft tender crumb and a decadent topping of lemon curd.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup butter
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 extra large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk (save the egg white for the egg wash)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ¼ tsp almond flavoring
  • 1 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour
  • ½ cup almond flour
  • ¼ cup coconut flour
  • 1¾ tsp zanthan gum
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • Scant ½ tsp cardamom
  • 3 oz flaked coconut
  • 1 large egg white beaten with 1 tbsp water
  • Apx. ½ cup lemon curd

Instructions

  1. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Using the paddle attachment in the bowl of stand mixer, cream the butter. Gradually add the sugar. Beat well. Add the egg and extra egg yolk. Beat. Mix in the vanilla and almond flavoring.
  3. In separate bowl, combine the flours, zanthan gum, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cardamom. Whisk together very well. Blend into the butter-sugar-egg mixture. Mix well. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill dough for 30 minutes in refrigerator.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F. Place coconut in one small bowl and the beaten egg white and water mixture into a second bowl. Pinch off pieces of the dough and roll into balls, approximately 1” in diameter (if you weigh the dough, each piece should weigh ¾ oz.) Dip each cookie ball in the egg white wash then roll in the coconut. Place cookies on prepared baking sheet, arranging them about 2” apart. Using thumb tip, end of wooden spoon, or the round bowl of a ¼ tsp measuring spoon, gently press an indent into the center of each cookie. Bake for 20-22 minutes. Immediately fill each cookie with about 1 teaspoonful of lemon curd as soon as the cookies come out of the oven. If indents are not clearly defined in each cookie, gently reform them using one of the afore-mentioned methods. Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely. Store in airtight container.

Notes

Note: Jam of choice may be substituted for the lemon curd, if desired.

Recipe for Lemon Curd here: https://myislandbistrokitchen.com/2017/04/14/luscious-lemon-curd/

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Thumbprint Cookies
Gluten-free Lemon-filled Thumbprint Cookies

 

Check out these other gluten-free cookie recipes from My Island Bistro Kitchen:

Gluten-free Snickerdoodles
Gluten-free Melting Moments Cookies
Gluten-free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

Gluten-free Lemon-filled Thumbprint Cookies

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Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square

Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square
Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square

If you like brown sugar fudge, you’ll love this Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square, even if you aren’t gluten-intolerant or on a grain-restrictive diet! With a cake-type base, it’s the fudge icing that makes this square and takes it from plain to yummy. It’s like having cake and candy at the same time!

I use 1-to-1 gluten-free baking flour along with a small amount of coconut flour in this square.  The coconut flour blends well with the shredded coconut in the recipe and gives the square extra flavor.  Super easy square to make.

Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square
Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square

The slightly tricky part is making the icing as it will “set up” very fast.  Make sure you have all the ingredients pre-measured and at hand when you start to make the icing.  It’s essential that the icing sugar be sifted to remove any lumps as there won’t be any time to work out any lumps when beating the icing sugar into the hot butter-sugar mixture. Once the icing starts to thicken, work quickly to spread it over the square.

This square freezes beautifully and is great to have on hand when you just need to have something sweet!

Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square
Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square

[Printable version of recipe follows at end of posting]

Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square

Ingredients:

Square
½ cup minus 1 tbsp butter, softened at room temperature
1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
1 extra-large egg (at room temperature for 20 minutes)
½ tsp pure vanilla
1 cup 1-to-1 gluten-free baking flour
2 tbsp coconut flour
1 tsp baking powder
pinch salt
1/3 cup milk
½ cup shredded coconut

Icing
3 tbsp butter, softened at room temperature
¾ cup brown sugar, lightly packed
3 tbsp cream
1 cup sifted icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Walnut halves for decoration (optional)

Method:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease or, alternatively, line 9” square baking pan with tin foil and spray with cooking oil.

Square:  Cream butter and sugar together.  Add the egg and beat well to combine with butter-sugar mixture.  Beat in vanilla.

Sift the 1-to-1 gluten-free flour, coconut flour, baking powder, and salt together.  Add the dry ingredients and milk to the creamed mixture in three parts (3 parts dry and 2 parts wet) starting and ending with the dry ingredients.  Beat for 1 minute longer on medium speed. Fold in the shredded coconut.  Spread batter evenly in prepared pan.

Bake for 30-32 minutes or until cake tester inserted into center of square comes out clean.  Remove square from oven and place on wire rack to cool completely.

Icing:  When square has cooled, make the icing by combining the butter and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat.  Stir until both have melted/dissolved.  Add the cream.  Bring mixture to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Remove from heat and, with an electric hand mixer, beat in the icing sugar until mixture starts to thicken.  Immediately stir in the vanilla and, working quickly (as this icing will “set up” very fast), spread the icing evenly over square.  Score cutting lines on square and, if desired, place one walnut half on each individual square. Let icing set completely before cutting squares.

Yield: One 9” pan of squares

Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square
Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square

Gluten-free Brown Sugar Fudge Square

Yield: 1 - 9" pan of squares

An old-fashioned fudge square made with gluten-free flour and topped with brown sugar fudge icing.

Ingredients

  • Square
  • ½ cup minus 1 tbsp butter, softened at room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1 extra-large egg (at room temperature for 20 minutes)
  • ½ tsp pure vanilla
  • 1 cup 1-to-1 gluten-free baking flour
  • 2 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch salt
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • ½ cup shredded coconut
  • Icing
  • 3 tbsp butter, softened at room temperature
  • ¾ cup brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 3 tbsp cream
  • 1 cup sifted icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • Walnut halves for decoration (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease or, alternatively, line 9” square baking pan with tin foil and spray with cooking oil.
  2. Square: Cream butter and sugar together. Add the egg and beat well to combine with butter-sugar mixture. Beat in vanilla.
  3. Sift the 1-to-1 gluten-free flour, coconut flour, baking powder, and salt together. Add the dry ingredients and milk to the creamed mixture in three parts (3 parts dry and 2 parts wet) starting and ending with the dry ingredients. Beat for 1 minute longer on medium speed. Fold in the shredded coconut. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan.
  4. Bake for 30-32 minutes or until cake tester inserted into center of square comes out clean. Remove square from oven and place on wire rack to cool completely.
  5. Icing: When square has cooled, make the icing by combining the butter and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir until both have melted/dissolved. Add the cream. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and, with an electric hand mixer, beat in the icing sugar until mixture starts to thicken. Immediately stir in the vanilla and, working quickly (as this icing will “set up” very fast), spread the icing evenly over square. Score cutting lines on square and, if desired, place one walnut half on each individual square. Let icing set completely before cutting squares.
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Fudge Squares

Gluten Free Fudge Squares

Gluten-free Melting Moments Cookies

Gluten-free Melting Moments
Gluten-free Melting Moments

These gluten-free melting moments cookies prove that being on a gluten-free diet does not mean one has to compromise on favorite sweet treats!

I use a 1-to-1 gluten-free baking flour, such as Bob’s Red Mills brand, for these cookies.  I also add a small amount of very finely ground almonds to the batter as this lends a tenderness to the cookie crumb which justifies the name of the cookies because they do melt in the mouth!

Gluten-free Melting Moments
Gluten-free Melting Moments

These cookies are very easy to make. Mix up the dough. Pinch off small amounts of the dough and form into small balls. Place on parchment-lined baking sheets and flatten with the tines of a fork. Bake. It’s really no more complicated than that!

Gluten-free Melting Moment Cookie
Gluten-free Melting Moment Cookie

[Printable recipe follows at end of posting]

Gluten-Free Melting Moments

Ingredients:
½ cup butter, softened at room temperature
¼ cup icing sugar (aka confectioner’s sugar or powdered sugar)
¼ tsp pure vanilla
½ cup 1-to-1 gluten-free baking flour
¼ cup finely ground almonds
¼ cup cornstarch

Method:

Preheat oven to 325°F.  Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

Cream butter.  Add the icing sugar and cream well with the butter.  Mix in vanilla.

In separate bowl, whisk the flour, ground almonds, and cornstarch together. Add to the creamed mixture and blend until well incorporated.

Form dough into small round balls (apx. 5/8 oz dough per ball).  Place balls on prepared baking sheets, about 2“ apart, and flatten each ball with the tines of a fork.  Decorate with small bits of maraschino cherries, if desired.

Bake for approximately 15-18 minutes, just until edges of cookies start to tint a golden tan color. Don’t over-bake. Let cool on baking sheet for 2-3 minutes then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.

Yield:  Apx. 1½ dozen cookies

Gluten-free Melting Moments
Gluten-free Melting Moments

Gluten-free Melting Moments Cookies

Yield: Apx. 1 1/2 dozen

These melt-in-your-mouth gluten-free melting moments cookies have a tender crumb and delicate butter and almond flavor.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup butter, softened at room temperature
  • ¼ cup icing sugar (aka confectioner’s sugar or powdered sugar)
  • ¼ tsp pure vanilla
  • ½ cup 1-to-1 gluten-free baking flour
  • ¼ cup finely ground almonds
  • ¼ cup cornstarch

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper
  2. Cream butter. Add the icing sugar and cream well with the butter. Mix in vanilla.
  3. In separate bowl, whisk the flour, ground almonds, and cornstarch together. Add to the creamed mixture and blend until well incorporated.
  4. Form dough into small round balls (apx. 5/8 oz dough per ball). Place balls on prepared baking sheets, about 2“ apart, and flatten each ball with the tines of a fork. Decorate with small bits of maraschino cherries, if desired.
  5. Bake for approximately 15-18 minutes, just until edges of cookies start to tint a golden tan color. Don’t over-bake. Let cool on baking sheet for 2-3 minutes then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.
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Gluten Free Melting Moments
Gluten Free Melting Moments
Gluten-free Melting Moments
Gluten-free Melting Moments

For other tasty gluten-free cookie recipes, click on the links below:

Gluten Free Lemon-Filled Thumbprint Cookies
Gluten Free Snickerdoodles
Gluten-free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

Gluten-Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

Gluten-Free Shortbread
Gluten-Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

These easy-to-make gluten-free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread cookies are brimming with flavor. The ground Earl Grey tea leaves lend a subtle hint of tea flavor as well as add wonderful specks of interest in the cookies.  The addition of the dried cranberries and grated orange rind make these very flavorful and tasty cookies.

Gluten-free Shortbread
Gluten-Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

I have been having very good success using 1-to-1 gluten-free baking flour, such as Bob’s Red Mill, for my gluten-free baking.  The addition of finely ground almonds adds both flavor and a layer of tenderness to the shortbread crumb.

Gluten-Free Shortbread
Gluten-Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

I use my old coffee grinder to grind the loose tea leaves very finely. This releases their essence which, in turn, infuses the dough with the tea aromatic. Use dried, not fresh or frozen, cranberries for these cookies and make sure they are chopped quite finely.

The dough will be quite soft so form it into a round log shape, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or waxed paper, and refrigerate it for 2-3 hours before slicing and baking. Refrigerating the dough helps to firm it up enough so that, when sliced with a sharp knife, the slices cut cleanly. Empty cardboard paper towel rolls make great cylinder “sleeves” in which to chill the cookie dough because they help to keep the round shape. Simply slit open the paper towel roll, place the wrapped cookie log inside the “sleeve”, draw the edges of the cylinder together, and secure with tape. Rotate the cookie dough log a couple of times during the chilling process to distribute its weight and help to keep the round shape.

These cookies are a great addition to the menu of anyone on a gluten-free diet. In fact, anyone can enjoy these cookies, regardless whether they have a sensitivity or intolerance to gluten or not – I’ll bet you’d never guess they’re made with gluten-free flour!

Gluten-free Shortbread
Gluten-Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

[Printable recipe follows at end of posting]

Gluten-Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

Ingredients:

½ cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
½ cup sifted icing sugar (aka confectioner’s or powdered sugar)
¾ tsp finely grated orange rind
1/2 tsp pure vanilla
1/8 tsp almond flavoring

¾ cup 1-to-1 gluten-free baking flour
¼ cup finely-ground almonds
1½ tbsp cornstarch
¼ tsp salt
¾ tsp finely ground Earl Grey tea leaves

¼ cup finely chopped dried cranberries

Method:

Cream butter and sugar together until smooth.  Beat in orange rind, vanilla, and almond flavoring.

Whisk flour, ground almonds, cornstarch, salt and ground tea leaves together.  Blend dry ingredients into creamed mixture until just combined.  Stir in cranberries.

Form dough into log approximately 1½” in diameter.  Wrap tightly in wax paper or plastic wrap. Slit open an empty paper towel cardboard cylinder and place cookie log in cylinder.  Draw cylinder sides together and secure with masking tape.  Refrigerate cookie log for 2-3 hours, turning roll every hour or so to distribute the weight of the log and to keep the shape round. (Unbaked cookie logs may be stored for 2-3 days in the refrigerator before baking, provided they are stored in sealed plastic bags or airtight containers.)

Preheat oven to 325°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. With a sharp knife, slice cookie log into ¼” thick slices.  Place cookies on prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 1½” apart.  Bake for 20-21 minutes, or until edges of cookies start to tint golden brown, rotating baking sheet half way through the baking.  Let cookies cool on sheets for 3-4 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling completely.

Store in airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or freeze for longer storage.

Yield:  Approximately 24 cookies

Gluten-Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

Yield: Apx. 24 cookies

A flavorful gluten-free shortbread cookie infused with a hint of Earl Grey tea and flavored with grated orange rind and dried cranberries.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • ½ cup sifted icing sugar (aka confectioner’s or powdered sugar)
  • ¾ tsp finely grated orange rind
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp almond flavoring
  • ¾ cup 1-to-1 gluten-free baking flour
  • ¼ cup finely-ground almonds
  • 1½ tbsp cornstarch
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp finely ground Earl Grey tea leaves
  • ¼ cup finely chopped dried cranberries

Instructions

  1. Cream butter and sugar together until smooth. Beat in orange rind, vanilla, and almond flavoring.
  2. Whisk flour, ground almonds, cornstarch, salt and ground tea leaves together. Blend dry ingredients into creamed mixture until just combined. Stir in cranberries.
  3. Form dough into log approximately 1½” in diameter. Wrap tightly in wax paper or plastic wrap. Slit open an empty paper towel cardboard cylinder and place cookie log in cylinder. Draw cylinder sides together and secure with masking tape. Refrigerate cookie log for 2-3 hours, turning roll every hour or so to distribute the weight of the log and to keep the shape round. (Unbaked cookie logs may be stored for 2-3 days in the refrigerator before baking, provided they are stored in sealed plastic bags or airtight containers.)
  4. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. With a sharp knife, slice cookie log into ¼” thick slices. Place cookies on prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 1½” apart. Bake for 20-21 minutes, or until edges of cookies start to tint golden brown, rotating baking sheet half way through the baking. Let cookies cool on sheets for 3-4 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling completely.
  5. Store in airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or freeze for longer storage.
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Gluten Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread
Gluten Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

 

 

 

 

 

Gluten-Free Shortbread
Gluten-Free Earl Grey Cranberry-Orange Shortbread

Looking for more great gluten-free cookie recipes?  Check out these from My Island Bistro Kitchen:

Melting Moments
Snickerdoodles
Lemon-Filled Thumbprint Cookies

Christmas Icebox Cookies Recipe

Icebox Cookies
Christmas Icebox Cookies

Christmas Icebox Cookies are a tradition in my household.  There are many varieties of cookies that beg to be made, shared, and eaten over the holiday period and these are always a perennial favorite.

The richness of the butter and sugar combined with the slight chewiness of the mixed glazed fruit and currants results in a tasty and flavorful cookie. Use finely chopped fruit and the small currants for these delicate cookies.

Christmas Cookies
Christmas Icebox Cookies

Icebox cookies are very easy to make and don’t take any unusual or difficult-to-find ingredients. The dough gets divided into thirds and then each third is formed into a round log shape, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or waxed paper and refrigerated for at least 3-4 hours before slicing and baking. This is because the dough needs time to firm up enough to be able to cut clean-edge slices.

Plan ahead and save three empty paper towel cardboard cylinders.  Slit up the length of the cylinders, these make great “sleeves” for the cookie logs and help to keep the shape of the logs round, or reasonably so. Secure the cylinders closed with tape.

Make sure to rotate the cylinders every hour or so during the 3-4 hours of dough chilling as this will help to distribute the weight of the dough and aid in keeping the cookie log round. When ready to bake the cookies, simply unwrap the chilled logs and, with a sharp flat-bladed knife, cut the logs into 1/4″ slices, place on parchment-lined baking sheets, and bake for 8-10 minutes. These cookie logs can be made two to three days in advance of baking and kept in the refrigerator so they are a great make-ahead cookie dough.

Icebox Cookies
Christmas Cookies

One of the great things about icebox cookies is that they can be made ahead and frozen, either before or after baking. Store the unbaked cookie logs in sealed bags in the freezer until they are needed. Simply let the dough sit at room temperature for approximately 30 minutes or so before slicing and baking.  They’re also great to have on hand if unexpected guests drop by – you can pop a pan of the cookies in the oven and have your house smell tantalizing while your guests await fresh-from-the-oven cookies!

These make great host/hostess gifts, too, either baked or unbaked. A festive tin filled with these delectable cookies will be a sure hit with anyone.

Icebox Cookies
Christmas Tin of Icebox Cookies

They’re also fun to package in cute little bags. Who doesn’t love to get a bag with homemade cookies inside!

If you wish to let the host/hostess bake the cookies when they so desire, simply wrap a chilled or frozen cookie log decoratively and include the baking instructions.

Christmas Cookies

Sometimes, I’ll enclose a small log of unbaked cookies in a little decorative bag and add a few of the baked cookies just to whet the recipient’s appetite!

Christmas Cookies
Icebox Cookies

These are easy-to-make, flavorful cookies that are very versatile – they look great on sweet trays, are easy to package in boxes, tins, or bags for gifts, and they are also wonderful treats in lunch bags, too!

[Printable recipe follows at end of posting.]

Christmas Icebox Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup butter, softened at room temperature
1 2/3 cups brown sugar, lightly packed
2 extra large eggs
1 tsp vanilla

3¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt

1 cup mixed glazed fruit
½ cup currants

Method:

Cream butter and sugar until smooth.  Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Stir in vanilla.

Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together.  Beat into creamed mixture until dry ingredients are combined.  Stir in cherries and currants until blended into dough.

Divide dough into thirds and shape each portion of dough into three separate logs, each approximately 2” in diameter.  Wrap tightly in wax paper or plastic wrap. Slit open 3 empty paper towel cardboard cylinders and place one cookie log in each cylinder.  Draw cylinder sides together and secure the cylinders with masking tape.  Refrigerate cookie logs for 3-4 hours, turning rolls every hour or so to distribute the weight of the logs and to keep the shape round. (Unbaked cookie logs may be stored for 2-3 days in the refrigerator before baking, provided they are stored in sealed plastic bags or airtight containers.)

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. With a sharp knife, slice cookie logs into ¼” thick slices.  Place cookies on prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 1½” apart.  Bake for 8-10 minutes, until lightly browned.  Let cookies cool on sheets for 3-4 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling completely.

Store in airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or freeze for longer storage.

Unbaked cookie logs may be frozen in tightly sealed bags or containers for up to 2 months.  Remove logs from freezer and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes or so before slicing and baking as above.

Yield:  Approximately 5½ dozen cookies

Christmas Icebox Cookies Recipe

Yield: Apx. 5 1/2 dozen

Traditional buttery-rich Christmas icebox cookies filled with mixed glazed fruit and currants.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened at room temperature
  • 1 2/3 cups brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 2 extra large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 cup mixed glazed fruit
  • ½ cup currants

Instructions

  1. Cream butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla.
  2. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Beat into creamed mixture until dry ingredients are combined. Stir in cherries and currants until blended into dough.
  3. Divide dough into thirds and shape each portion of dough into three separate logs, each approximately 2” in diameter. Wrap tightly in wax paper or plastic wrap. Slit open 3 empty paper towel cardboard cylinders and place one cookie log in each cylinder. Draw cylinder sides together and secure the cylinders with masking tape. Refrigerate cookie logs for 3-4 hours, turning rolls every hour or so to distribute the weight of the logs and to keep the shape round. (Unbaked cookie logs may be stored for 2-3 days in the refrigerator before baking, provided they are stored in sealed plastic bags or airtight containers.)
  4. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. With a sharp knife, slice cookie logs into ¼” thick slices. Place cookies on prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 1½” apart. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until lightly browned. Let cookies cool on sheets for 3-4 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling completely.
  5. Store in airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or freeze for longer storage.
  6. Unbaked cookie logs may be frozen in tightly sealed bags or containers for up to 2 months. Remove logs from freezer and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes or so before slicing and baking as above.
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For more great Christmas cookie recipes, click on the links below:

Marvelous Melting Moments
Molasses Spice Cookies

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Icebox Cookies
Christmas Icebox Cookies
Christmas Icebox Cookies

Marvelous Melting Moments Recipe

Melting Moments
Marvelous Melting Moments

How can a cookie with only 6 simple ingredients taste this good!!!  Well, they’re not called Melting Moments without good reason.  One bite of these sweet temptations and, from the rich, tender crumb of the cookie, you’ll find they quickly melt in your mouth.

Made only with butter (absolutely no substitutions on this one), icing sugar (aka powdered sugar or confectioner’s sugar), vanilla, flour, cornstarch, and salt, they’re easy to make and delightful to eat! And, they make wonderful gifts, too, and are also a special addition to any holiday sweet tray.

Melting Moments
Melting Moments

My mother always comments on how “short” these cookies are.  “Shortness” in a cookie is characterized by the amount of fat and sugar present and the high ratio of butter to flour in the recipe. To get the high degree of tenderness that is the hallmark of a “short” cookie, a lot of butter is used in the dough and, the more fat content, the more tender and rich the cookie crumb will be.

Melting Moments
Melting Moments

It’s important that these cookies not be over-handled or over-mixed as they will become tough. Cream the butter and sugar together until smooth then incorporate the dry ingredients. This cookie dough is too tender to roll out because it won’t hold together to cut shapes from so simply pinch off pieces of the dough and quickly form them into small balls. Don’t over-work them as the dough will become warm and, subsequently, sticky. As a mark of reference, I use about 5/8 oz of dough per ball.  Now, I don’t stop and weigh the dough for each cookie because, from experience, I can “eyeball” how much dough is needed per cookie but it’s good to have a frame of reference as to the size of the cookie ball. Place the cookie balls on parchment-lined baking sheets. Use the tines of a fork to flatten the cookies and decorate each with a tiny bit of maraschino cherry, if desired.

These cookies freeze very well so they can be made well ahead and frozen until they are needed. They are the perfect Christmas or anytime cookie!

Melting Moments
Melting Moments

[Printable recipe follows at end of posting]

Melting Moments

Ingredients:

1 cup unsalted butter
½ cup sifted icing sugar (aka powdered sugar or confectioner’s sugar)
1 tsp pure vanilla
1½ cups all-purpose flour
½ cup cornstarch
1/8 tsp salt

Maraschino cherries for decorations (if desired)

Method:

Preheat oven to 300°F.  Line baking sheets with parchment paper
Cream butter.  Add the icing sugar and cream well with the butter.  Mix in vanilla.

In separate bowl, whisk the flour, cornstarch, and salt together. Add to the creamed mixture and blend until well incorporated.

Form dough into small round balls (apx. 5/8 oz dough per ball).  Place balls on prepared baking sheets and flatten each ball with the tines of a fork.  Decorate with small bits of maraschino cherries, if desired.

Bake for approximately 18-20 minutes. Don’t over-bake cookies. Let cool on baking sheet for 2-3 minutes then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.

Yield:  Apx. 2½ dozen

Marvelous Melting Moments Recipe

Yield: Apx. 2 1/2 dozen

A delightful melt-in-your mouth shortbread-type cookie with a rich and tender crumb.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • ½ cup sifted icing sugar (aka powdered sugar or confectioner’s sugar)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • Maraschino cherries for decorations (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Cream butter. Add the icing sugar and cream well with the butter. Mix in vanilla.
  3. In separate bowl, whisk the flour, cornstarch, and salt together. Add to the creamed mixture and blend until well incorporated.
  4. Form dough into small round balls (apx. 5/8 oz dough per ball). Place balls on prepared baking sheets and flatten each ball with the tines of a fork. Decorate with small bits of maraschino cherries, if desired.
  5. Bake for approximately 18-20 minutes. Don’t over-bake cookies. Let cool on baking sheet for 2-3 minutes then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.
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Shortbread
Melting Moments
Melting Moments
Marvelous Melting Moments

 

For another great Christmas cookie recipe, try my Molasses Spice Cookies

Molasses Spice Cookies

Sugar and spice and everything nice!  That pretty much sums up the smell in the kitchen when these cookies are baking.  These cookies have a lovely blend of spices that make them a real taste treat, especially with a tall glass of cold milk.

Molasses Spice Cookies
Molasses Spice Cookies

The key to keeping these cookies a bit on the chewy side is not to overbake them.  Otherwise, they get crisp and hard and more resemble a thick gingersnap.  These are almost always a staple in my freezer since they freeze so well. Good treat any time of the year.

Molasses Spice Cookies
Molasses Spice Cookies
Molasses Spice Cookies

Ingredients:

6 tbsp shortening
6 tbsp butter
¾ cup + 1 tbsp granulated sugar
1 extra large egg, lightly beaten
¼ cup molasses

2¼ cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp soda
1/8 tsp salt
¾ tsp cinnamon
¾ tsp ginger
¾ tsp cloves
Pinch mace

Sugar for dusting cookies

Method:

Preheat oven to 350°. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

In large bowl, cream shortening and butter together. Beat in sugar. Add egg. Beat well. Blend in molasses.

Sift dry ingredients together and blend into creamed mixture.

Form dough into 1¼ “ balls and place approximately 2” apart on prepared baking sheet. Flatten with fork tines. Dust cookies lightly with granulated sugar. Bake for 8 – 9 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest on cookie sheet for 3-4 minutes then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool.

Yield: Apx. 3 dozen

Molasses Spice Cookies
Molasses Spice Cookies

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Molasses Spice Cookies

Yield: Apx. 3 dozen

A soft and chewy molasses cookie that combines a tasty blend of spices

Ingredients

  • 6 tbsp shortening
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • ¾ cup + 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 extra large egg, lightly beaten
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp cinnamon
  • ¾ tsp ginger
  • ¾ tsp cloves
  • Pinch mace

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In large bowl, cream shortening and butter together. Beat in sugar. Add egg. Beat well. Blend in molasses.
  3. Sift dry ingredients together and blend into creamed mixture.
  4. Form dough into 1¼ “ balls and place approximately 2” apart on prepared baking sheet. Flatten with fork tines. Dust cookies lightly with granulated sugar. Bake for 8 – 9 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest on cookie sheet for 3-4 minutes then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool.
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Molasses Spice Cookies
Molasses Spice Cookies

 

DSC_0881

Frypan Cookie Balls

Frypan Cookie Balls
Frypan Cookie Balls

I have no idea why these tasty morsels are called cookies because, in my view, they in no way resemble my definition of a cookie!  Nonetheless, they have always been called Frypan Cookies in my family and, regardless their name, they are mighty tasty. In fact, I think they’re actually more like candy than cookies.

Why they are called “Frypan Cookies” is a mystery to me but that’s what I’ve always known them as and my mother has been making them since I was a wee child (and probably even longer ago than that).  My best guess is that, somewhere back in time, someone picked up a frypan and used it to cook the date, sugar, and egg mixture and simply named the result “Frypan Cookies”.  In any event, we’ve continued the tradition of using a frypan which, I must admit due to its shallow depth, is easier to scoop the mixture from to make the balls than would be a deeper saucepan.

While these treats don’t take a lot of ingredients or any difficult-to-find ones, I tend to only make them once a year – at Christmas – probably because that was the only time of the year my mother made them and they were always considered to be a special Christmas treat.

The trick to making these balls is in the thickening of the egg, sugar, and date mixture.  It is important to stir the mixture continuously as it cooks to avoid scorching.  Once the mixture starts to thicken, it’s done.  This generally takes about 5-7 minutes.

Don’t let the mixture get too thick as it will then be difficult to incorporate the rice cereal into the mixture.

Adding nuts, such as chopped walnuts or pecans, is optional in this recipe.  I generally do not add them.  One-half cup of chopped glazed red cherries can also be added, if desired.

There are a couple of options when it comes to the coconut coating for frypan cookie balls.  Traditionally, sweetened shredded coconut is used – this is the long stringy kind of coconut.

While, sometimes, it is tricky to get the coconut to stick to the balls, this coconut makes a more showy frypan cookie ball.

The shorter, more fine-textured, macaroon coconut may also be used.

It makes a neater looking ball but is not quite as interesting and showy looking.

I often choose the macaroon coconut if I am making these balls for trays for an afternoon tea since they are more dainty and the coconut adheres better and does not tend to fall off the balls.

Choice of coconut in which to roll the balls is, of course, a matter of personal preference.

The mixture needs to be quite warm in order for the coconut to stick to the balls.  So, it’s important to work quickly when making the balls.  If the mixture gets too cool, you can transfer it to a microwave-safe bowl and heat the mixture for just a very few seconds (i.e., 7-8 seconds) to warm it up.

The balls can be formed by hand but it’s a sticky process (although spraying the hands with cooking spray helps).

The best method is to use a small 1″ cookie scoop.  This will also ensure that the balls are of consistent size.

These balls need to be kept chilled and will keep in the refrigerator for about a week.  They also freeze really well if longer storage is needed.  Whether refrigerating or freezing, just ensure that the balls are stored in an airtight container and are separated between layers of wax paper.

Frypan Cookies
Frypan Cookies

Frypan Cookie Balls

Ingredients:

2 tbsp butter
2 eggs, beaten until light
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup granulated sugar
1½ cups pitted dates, chopped

2 cups crisped rice cereal (such as Rice Krispies)
½ cup chopped nuts (optional)
Apx. 1½ – 2 cups sweetened shredded coconut or apx. 2/3 – 1 cup macaroon coconut

Method:

Line large baking sheet with wax paper.

In large frypan, over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk the eggs, vanilla, and sugar together. Add the liquid mixture along with the dates to the frypan and reduce heat to medium low. Cook mixture, stirring constantly to avoid scorching, for approximately 5-7 minutes or until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and stir in the rice cereal and nuts.

Place coconut in bowl. Using a 1” cookie scoop, form the mixture into balls then drop balls into coconut; roll to coat then place on cookie sheet. Refrigerate until firm. Keep refrigerated in an airtight container or freeze for longer storage.

Yield: Apx. 56 balls

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Frypan Cookie Balls

Yield: Apx. 56 - 1" balls

A rich, moist, and slightly crunchy date ball.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 eggs, beaten until light
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1½ cups pitted dates, chopped
  • 2 cups crisped rice cereal (such as Rice Krispies)
  • ½ cup chopped nuts (optional)
  • Apx. 1½ - 2 cups sweetened shredded coconut or apx. 2/3 - 1 cup macaroon coconut

Instructions

  1. Line large baking sheet with wax paper.
  2. In large frypan, over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk the eggs, vanilla, and sugar together. Add the liquid mixture along with the dates to the frypan and reduce heat to medium low. Cook mixture, stirring constantly to avoid scorching, for approximately 5-7 minutes or until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and stir in the rice cereal and nuts.
  3. Place coconut in bowl. Using a 1” cookie scoop, form the mixture into balls then drop balls into coconut; roll to coat then place on cookie sheet. Refrigerate until firm. Keep refrigerated in an airtight container or freeze for longer storage.
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Frypan Cookie Balls
Frypan Cookie Balls

Old-Fashioned Scottish Oatcakes

 

Old-fashioned Oatcakes served with Brie and J.J. Stewart's Cranberry Champagne and Crystalized Ginger Preserves
Old-fashioned Oatcakes served with Brie and J.J. Stewart’s Cranberry Champagne and Crystalized Ginger Preserves

Oatcakes are very versatile and take such basic, simple ingredients.  A cross between a cookie and a cracker, they are savory bites and are not overly sweet.  In fact, I would describe these artisan cookies/crackers as having a nice short, crisp texture.  Scottish in origin, oatcakes probably made their debut in Canada when they arrived along with Scottish immigrants.

Oatcakes can be eaten as plain cookies or sandwiched together with jam or date filling.  They can be consumed as crackers served with various condiments such as tangy gourmet preserves and marmalades alongside cheese, such as Brie.  Here I am serving them with J.J. Stewart’s Cranberry Champagne and Crystalized Ginger Preserves made in Stratford, PEI.  You can read the story I wrote earlier on J.J. Stewart’s products by clicking here.

This product is a bit sharp and tangy and goes particularly well with a plain oatcake and Brie cheese.   Whatever preserve, jam, or marmalade you serve with these, make sure it is not runny.  It needs to be fairly thick consistency so it will stay in place atop the oatcake. Choosing a bright red jam makes these colorful savories!

Oatcakes can also be dipped in chocolate.  And, yes, they can even find their way onto an afternoon tea table because they taste especially good with a fine cup of tea.  In fact, I served them at my Tartan Day Afternoon Tea this year.

Oatcakes at Afternoon Tea
Oatcakes at Afternoon Tea

 

Old-fashioned Savory Oatcakes

 Ingredients:

1 cup shortening

1 cup white sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

¼ tsp salt

2 cups oatmeal (not instant)

Method:

Assemble ingredients.

Oatcake Ingredients
Oatcake Ingredients

Preheat oven to 350°.

With electric mixer, cream shortening and sugar.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Blend in vanilla.

In separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, and salt.

With mixer at lowest speed, gradually add the flour mixture until combined.

Remove bowl from mixer and, using a wooden spoon, add the oatmeal.  Stir well.

Roll out dough thin – between ⅛” and ¼” thick.  Cut into 2” circles or squares.

Place on parchment-lined baking sheets.

Bake 10 minutes.  Remove from oven an let set on baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

Oatcakes freeze very well.  They are a great staple to have on hand along with a good quality preserve or marmalade so, when company drops in unexpectedly, it is quick and easy to pull together some refreshments.  Set out the bottle of preserve, a stack of oatcakes, some favorite cheese, and fresh fruit and you have a savory snack food!

 

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Oatcakes
Scottish Oatcakes

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2013 “Cookie of the Month” Year-end Round-up

Those who regularly follow my blog will recall that I made the commitment back in January 2013 to post one cookie recipe a month for the entire year.  So, for ease of retrieval, I thought I would do a year-end round-up of all 12 cookies.

In January, just in time for Robbie Burns Day, I shared my recipe for Shortbread.

Shortbread

In February, with sweet Valentine’s Day, old-fashioned Sugar Cookies topped the list.

Sugar Cookies
Sugar Cookies

In March, Double Chocolate Chip Drop Cookies, made with a hint of stout, were ready for St. Patrick’s Day.

Chocolate Drop Cookies Made with Stout
Double Chocolate Chip Drop Cookies

In April, thoughts turned to lighter, more spring-like, fare like these Lemon Spritz Shortbread Cookies.

Lemon Spritz Shortbread Cookies
Lemon Spritz Shortbread Cookies

In May, old-fashioned Cherry Winks proved they are still a perennial favorite.

Cherry Wink Cookie
Cherry Wink Cookie

In June, the no-bake Spider Cookies proved they are just as much a favorite today as they were when I was growing up!

Spider Cookies
Spider Cookies

In July, as we celebrated “Christmas in July”, the Brown Sugar Jam-Filled Cookies brought back memories of the kinds of cookies often found in grandma’s cookie jar.

Brown Sugar Jam-Filled Cookies
Brown Sugar Jam-Filled Cookies

In August, Chocolate Drop Cookies, were a hit with the chocolate lovers!

Chocolate Drop Cookies
Chocolate Drop Cookies

In September, crisp and light-textured Peanut Butter Cookies made it on to the cookie of the month roster.

Peanut Butter Cookies
Peanut Butter Cookies

In October, the substantial and tasty raisin-filled Plum Puff Cookies heralded the fall season.

Plum Puff Cookies
Plum Puff Cookies

In November, when the days turned cooler and thoughts turned to the sweet smell of cooking with spices, the old-fashioned icebox Gingersnaps made their debut.

Gingersnaps
Gingersnaps

In December, these Coconut Cherry Macaroons made a fine addition to trays of sweets and to gift boxes.

Coconut Cherry Macaroons
Coconut Cherry Macaroons

I hope you have enjoyed some of my favorite cookie recipes.  Do you have a favorite cookie?

Barbara

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December 2013 Cookie of the Month: Coconut Cherry Macaroons

This is the final cookie of the month for 2013.  I have selected to share Coconut Cherry Macaroons, a favorite recipe that has been in our family for decades.

There are so many recipes for coconut macaroons with ingredients and methods for making them that vary.  This is a variation of the traditional coconut macaroon cookie.  Macaroons are not difficult to make and don’t take a lot of ingredients.  The addition of the candied cherries makes these macaroons tasty.  They are also showy on a plate of sweets.  I hope you enjoy them.

Coconut Cherry Macaroons

4 extra-large eggs (at room temperature), separated (reserve the yolks)

¼ tsp salt

1 cup white sugar

1 tsp almond extract

½ tsp vanilla

3 cups coconut*

1½ cups flour

¾ cup red candied cherries, chopped

¾ cup green candied cherries, chopped

 

Assemble ingredients.

Preheat oven to 350F.

In large bowl of stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, whip the egg whites and salt on high speed just until frothy.  Gradually, and very slowly, add the sugar while continuing to beat on high speed.  Whisk the egg whites and sugar until mixture forms stiff peaks.

Meanwhile, in separate large bowl, with a hand mixer or a whisk, beat the four egg yolks along with the almond and vanilla flavorings.

Stir in coconut.  Add flour and candied cherries.  Mix well.

Fold the stiff egg white mixture into the coconut mixture.

Drop by teaspoonfuls onto parchment-lined baking sheets.

1-1-DSC01261

Bake 12-15 minutes or until edges are golden brown and cookies are set.   Let cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes then transfer to wire racks to finish cooling.

1-1-DSC01263

* Any kind of coconut — flaked, shredded, or macaroon — and either sweetened or unsweetened (or a mixture of both), can be used.  In the photographs that accompany this recipe, I used macaroon coconut, a shorter variety of coconut.

Happy Holidays!

Attractively package these macaroons and they make a great hostess gift or a remembrance for a teacher, colleague, neighbor, or anyone who has a sweet tooth!

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November 2013 Cookie of the Month: Gingersnaps

Gingersnaps
Gingersnaps

November brings days with shorter daylight hours and cooler temperatures.  If you are like me, when late fall arrives, your thoughts turn to comfort foods that include spicy cookies.  My choice of cookie of the month for November is the old-fashioned gingersnap.  These wafer-thin, crisp cookies are flavoured with ginger, cinnamon, and cloves, all scents that make the kitchen smell divine when they are baking.

Gingersnaps are not difficult to make but they do take some time since this recipe requires the dough to be shaped into logs and then refrigerated for 24 hours.  While these cookies are tasty any time of the year, they make a great addition to holiday sweet trays and gift boxes.  The dough can also be frozen, then thawed, sliced, and baked when desired.

Old-fashioned Gingersnaps

Ingredients:

1/3 cup molasses
2 tbsp brown sugar
½ cup margarine

1 tsp soda

1 egg yolk

1½ cups flour
1 tsp ginger
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp cloves
¼ tsp salt

Method:

Assemble ingredients.

Into medium-sized saucepan, combine molasses, brown sugar, and margarine.  Over medium-low heat, bring mixture to a boil, stirring regularly to prevent scorching.

Remove from heat once mixture has started to boil.  Add soda and stir well.  Cool mixture to room temperature.

Add egg yolk to cooled mixture.  Stir well.

Sift dry ingredients into a bowl.

Mix the dry ingredients into wet ingredients to make a stiff dough.  Stir well to combine.

Turn dough onto wax paper and roll and shape into two logs each about 2½” – 3” in diameter – either round or rectangular-shaped.  Wrap each roll individually in plastic wrap.  Chill for 24 hours.

Preheat oven to 375F.  Remove cookie logs from refrigerator and unwrap.  Using a very sharp knife, slice each log into 1/8” slices.

Place cookies about 1” apart on parchment-lined baking sheet.

Bake for 10-12 minutes.  Let cookies cool on pan for 2-3 minutes then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling.

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October 2013 Cookie of the Month: Plum Puff Cookies

Plum Puff Cookies

 

Plum Puff Cookies are my October 2013 Cookie of the Month.  These are hearty cookies because each one is actually two cookies sandwiched together with a tasty raisin filling.  These cookies can also be filled with your favorite jam, date , or even lemon, filling.

Cookie Ingredients:

¼ cup butter

½ tbsp lard

½ cup sugar

1 egg, beaten

2 tbsp milk

½ tsp vanilla

1¼ cups flour

1/8 tsp salt

¼ tsp soda

1/8 tsp cardamon

 

Method:

Assemble ingredients.

 

Preheat oven to 350F.

Beat butter and lard together.  Add sugar.  Beat until light and fluffy.  Add egg, milk, and vanilla.

Sift flour, salt, soda, and cardamom together.  Stir into wet ingredients and mix just until incorporated.

Knead dough into ball.  If dough is soft, place in refrigerator for 30-40 minutes.

On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to about 1/8” thickness.  Divide dough in half.  Using a 2 – 2½” linzer round crinkle cookie cutter, cut out one half of the dough into solid circles.  Cut remaining dough into the same size circles but fit the linzer cookie cutter with desired cut-out for cookie centers. (Note:  If you don’t have a linzer cookie cutter, simply use any cookie cutter shape you have and then use a smaller cookie cutter to cut out the centers of half of the cookies.)

Place cookies, about 1½” – 2” apart, on parchment-lined baking sheet.  Bake on center rack in oven for 10-12 minutes. Let cool on rack for 2-3 minutes then transfer to cooling rack.

When cookies have cooled completely, spread raisin filling (recipe follows) on flat side of each solid cookie, then top with the flat side of a cookie that has center cut out.

Yield:  2-dozen sandwich cookies

Filling Ingredients:

1 cup raisins

1 tbsp flour

½ cup sugar

½ cup water

½ tsp vanilla

Pinch of cinnamon

Smidgeon of salt

 

Combine all ingredients in saucepan.  Over medium-low heat, cook raisin mixture until thickened.

An old-fashioned wholesome cookie.

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September 2013 Cookie of the Month: Peanut Butter Cookies

Peanut Butter Cookies
Peanut Butter Cookies

My September Cookie of the Month is an old favourite – peanut butter cookies.  These cookies take very few ingredients and nothing out of the ordinary that would not be in most cupboards.  They have been found in many lunchboxes for decades.  Either smooth or crunchy peanut butter may be used – whichever is your preference – in the cookies.  In order to keep the cookies a bit soft, watch the baking time, checking them at the 10-minute point.

Peanut Butter Cookies

Ingredients:

¼ cup shortening
¼ cup butter
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup white sugar
½ cup peanut butter
1 egg, well-beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1 tsp soda
1/8 tsp salt

Method:

Assemble ingredients.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Cream shortening, and butter together.  Beat in brown and white sugars until fluffy.

Mix in peanut butter.

Add egg and vanilla.

Sift flour, soda, and salt together.  Add to wet ingredients and mix just until dry ingredients are incorporated.

If dough is very soft, refrigerate for 30-40 minutes.  Shape dough into small balls about 1” in diameter.  Place on parchment-lined baking sheet about 2 ½” – 3” apart as these cookies spread.

With fork dipped in sugar, press down cookies in a traditional criss-cross pattern with the tines of the fork.

Bake on center rack in oven for 10-12 minutes.  Cool on baking sheet for 2-3 minutes then transfer to cooling rack.

Yield:  3½ – 4 dozen

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August 2013 Cookie of the Month: Chocolate Drop Cookies

I have always been a chocolate lover.  These chocolate cookies were ones my Mother often made when I was a child.  I like the rich chocolate flavour and somewhat chewy center they have.  These cookies don’t take any uncommon ingredients or ones most bakers wouldn’t have in their cupboards.  Of course, using the best cocoa you can find will make for a richer, more flavourful cookie.

They are very easy to make and, being drop cookies, there is no rolling the dough and cutting out shapes and no need for any icing.  Simply scoop up some dough with a teaspoon and use another to slide the dough off the spoon and on to the cookie sheet.  These cookies can be dressed up with 1/2 cup of either chopped nuts, dates, raisins, or even chocolate chips.  However, I don’t add any extras to them as I like the smooth texture and flavour they have on their own without any further additions.

Chocolate Drop Cookies

1/2 cup shortening, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

Method:

Preheat oven to 375F.

With electric mixer, beat shortening and sugar together until light and fluffy (1-2 minutes).  Beat in egg, vanilla, and milk.

Into separate bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt.  Add to wet ingredients and stir just until dry ingredients are incorporated.

Drop by teaspoonfuls onto parchment-lined baking sheet.

Bake 10-11 minutes.  Do not overbake or cookies will be dry.

Yield:  Apx. 3 dozen

These cookies are good any time and make good lunch box treats as well as picnic basket fare.  They are especially good with a dish of vanilla ice cream!

1-DSC_0694

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Chocolate Cookies
Chocolate Drop Cookies

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July 2013 Cookie of the Month: Brown Sugar Jam-Filled Cookies (It’s Christmas in July!)

Brown Sugar Jam-Filled Cookies
Brown Sugar Jam-Filled Cookies

Happy Christmas in July!  I know, I know, I know!  It’s only July but it’s never too early to think about Christmas cookies!  So, as I continue on with my Cookie of the Month series in 2013, I am sharing an old family favourite – Brown Sugar Jam-Filled Cookies – as the July cookie.

This recipe was shared with me by a neighbour lady 36 years ago.  It has long been a favourite cookie in our household.  It is not too sweet but is very tasty….bite into one of these cookies and you’ll find that one will not be enough!

You can also vary the flavour by using different jams and jellies in the center, although red jam is always the most showy.  I have used some of my fresh batch of strawberry jam as the filler in the cookies in these photos.

When my neighbour made the cookies, she never added cherries or nuts; however, I think these additions make the cookies a bit more special, particularly around holiday time.

I do a lot of special baking around the holidays but have discovered that not everyone wants gooey squares and rich decadent cookies, balls, and candy that always seem to adorn sweet trays during the holiday season.  For some, they are just too rich and sweet.  These cookies are the perfect alternative.  They are what I would class as a ‘substantial’ cookie yet the nuts and cherries still keep them within the Christmas ‘zone’.

But don’t reserve them just for the holidays!  They are good any time of the year and are especially good picnic fare and lunch box treats.  They also make a great tea-time snack (yes, I took my Christmas China to the beach for a mid-evening tea and had to watch out for the seagulls who were eying the cookies pretty well!).

The Brown Sugar Jam-Filled Cookies are easy to make and don’t take uncommon ingredients.  They also freeze well so are great to have on hand.

Brown Sugar Jam-Filled Cookies

Ingredients:

½ cup butter, softened

1 cup brown sugar

1 tbsp milk

1 egg

½ tsp vanilla

1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour

½ tsp baking soda

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp cardamom

½ cup chopped macadamia nuts

¼ cup chopped maraschino cherries

Favorite jam or jelly

Method:

Preheat oven to 350C.

Assemble ingredients.

In medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, soda, salt, and cardamom.  Set aside.

Chop well-drained cherries. I drain them on, and dry them with, paper towel.  The cherries need to be very well-drained and dried as, otherwise, they will color the dough pink.  Chop macadamia nuts.  Set both the cherries and nuts aside.

In bowl of stand mixer, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in egg, milk, and vanilla.

page 2 - Wet Ingredients

On slow “stir” speed, stir in dry ingredients just until combined.  Do not overmix.

page 3 - Adding Flour

Stir in cherries and nuts by hand.

On parchment-lined baking sheet, drop dough by teaspoonfuls.  With thumb, press indent into center of each cookie.  Fill with ¼ – ½ tsp of favorite jam or jelly.

Bake for 12-14 minutes.  Do not overbake.  Let cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling.

Yield:  Apx. 30 cookies (depending on the size you choose to make)

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