|Photo from Veg Web user buttercup954|
Cookies are one of the best things in the world. And you can still enjoy them as a vegan or even if you are gluten-free like my friend Leslie. She asked me for a gluten-free pumpkin pie recipe at Thanksgiving and I forgot to send her one. To make up for it, I promised to post a recipe for something she misses: chocolate chip cookies.
Unless you are allergic to gluten, there is no reason for you to cut gluten totally out of your diet. This recipe calls for rice flour, which is gluten free. You can totally use white or wheat flour instead if you do not have a gluten allergy.
Most grocery stores carry rice flour (I bought mine at Safeway), and if not your local health food store will. If you are in Hawaii, Down to Earth sells it in bulk and in bags. Whole food and Trader Joe’s should have it too.
If you can’t find it or just want to make your own, it’s pretty easy. Put dry rice into a food processor and grind into a fine powder.
I, as a broke college kid, do not have a food processor, so if I need to make rice flour, I use my blender. It gets the job done but it takes a lot longer and does not get the flour super fine.
|Get it as powdery as you can|
Whether you use a food processor or a blender, it’s best to work in small batches, 1 to 3 cups at a time depending on your machine. This ensures all the rice is powdered evenly, because the last thing you want when you bite into a soft chocolate chip cookie is a big rice grain.
I adapted a recipe from Veg Web called Happy Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies. If you read the comments on the post, the most common complaint is that the dough is either too crumbly or will not come together at all. The first time I ever made it, the dough held together but turned into a crumby mess when I baked it. The users who had the most success are the ones who made a few alterations to the recipe, so I caution you about following the exact recipe listed.
As for the “vegan” ingredients, you can find them in most normal grocery stores just like the rice flour. Vegan butters, or “buttery spreads” as they are sometimes called, are made from oil or soy and will do just as good a job as milk butter. I like Earth Balance, which most stores carry. You probably won’t need to go to another store for the vegan chocolate chips either. Just read the labels. Find a package that has no milk or milk products–which includes whey and casein. Usually darker chocolates are the dairy free, and have more antioxidants in them too.
Galletas con Chispas de Chocolate (Leslie’s Bolivian, hence the Spanish)
|Happy Vegan Indeed|
2 cups rice flour
1 tps baking powder
1/2 tps salt
1/4 tps cinnamon (Optional, I don’t taste the difference but cinnamon is great for your metabolism so why not)
1/2 cup vegan butter
1 cup raw sugar or 1 and 1/2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup vanilla soy milk (Or, use plain plus some vanilla extract)
2 tbs flax speeds (Optional, it doesn’t change the taste but adds fiber)
1 cup vegan chocolate chips
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
In a separate bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, soy milk, and flax seed.
Add the wet to the dry mixture, and add the chocolate chips. Mix until it forms a ball. It may be crumbly, but add a little more milk if it just a big crumbly mess. It should be able to hold a shape.
Spoon tablespoon-sized rounds onto an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 7-10 minutes. Or, if you prefer bars like me, spread the dough evenly in a baking pan and bake for 15-20 minutes. The cookies, or bars, will be slightly golden, and soft—softer than you think they should be. Let the cookies rest for a few minutes before removing them from the sheet or pan, they stiffen up as they cool.
Mine came out chewy and soft, just how I like them. A nice break from my math homework. Hope you like them Leslie!