Allergy Friendly Gingerbread Trees with Lemon Icing

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Allergy-Friendly Gingerbread Trees with Lemon Icing

 

Fill your home with a delicious aroma and let the family join in as you roll, cut and bake these delectable cookies. A simple icing tops these pretty little trees, but don’t hesitate to add sparkling sugar for a snow-kissed look.

 

Makes 40 2½-inch cookies

Free From: gluten and all top allergens

 

Cookies

2½ cups my Basic Gluten-Free Flour Mix or Authentic Foods GF Classical Blend

1 tsp ground ginger

¾ tsp baking soda

¾ tsp salt

⅝ tsp xanthan gum

½ tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp ground cloves

½ cup packed light brown sugar

½ cup dairy-free soy-free vegetable shortening, cut into 8 pieces

¼ cup + 2 tbsp applesauce

¼ cup unsulphured molasses

 

Icing

1⅓ cups confectioners’ sugar

2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

Decorating, sanding or coarse sugar (optional)

 

In bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, mix flour blend, ginger, baking soda, salt, xanthan gum, cinnamon and cloves on low speed for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar, mix 30 seconds more.

Add shortening pieces and applesauce to flour mixture and mix on low speed for 90 seconds, or until the consistency of a fine meal. With mixer still running, add molasses and mix for 30 seconds, scraping down the sides of bowl as necessary.

Lay 2 large sheets of parchment paper on your work surface. Transfer dough to one sheet of parchment. Pat dough into a disk and cover with other piece of parchment. Roll out dough into a ¼-inch thick, long rectangle.

Transfer dough with parchment paper to the freezer (place on a cleared rack or baking tray) and chill until firm, at least 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350° F with racks in upper and lower thirds. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Remove dough from freezer and place it on a work surface. Peel back the top sheet of parchment paper, then replace it. Flip, peel off other sheet of parchment and discard it.  This is a good technique to avoid over-handling and breaking the rolled dough.

Cut dough into long 2½-inch wide strips then cut each strip into triangles with 2-inch wide bases. Place the dough triangles on baking sheets, 1 inch apart. Gather any remaining dough scraps, roll into ¼-inch thick rectangle and cut into triangle shapes.

Bake 10 minutes, or until the cookies are golden. Let cool for 5 minutes on baking sheets, before transferring the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

For icing, whisk confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl until smooth. Drizzle over cooled cookies wiith a very small spoon or knife, making 3 or 4 horizontal lines across each cookie. Sprinkle with coarse sugar. Let set then shake off any extra sugar.

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Allergy-Friendly Gingerbread Trees with Lemon Icing © 2013 by Cybele Pascal

This recipe first appeared in the Winter 2013 issue of Allergic Living Magazine

Allergy Friendly Lemon Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies

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Lemon Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies

 

It’s December, folks, which means it’s time to really get baking!  These tender “buttery” cookies are sure to be a favorite at your holiday parties, or left out for Santa.  Nobody will ever know they are gluten-free, vegan, and free from the Top 8 Allergens.

Thumbprint is really a misnomer for these little gems, as you actually use your index finger to make the little jam pools in the center. Either way, they’re oh-so-pretty with festive red centers and a snowy dusting of powdered sugar.

 

Makes 24 2-inch cookies

Free From: gluten and all top allergens

 

¾ cup dairy-free soy-free vegetable shortening

½ cup sugar

½ tsp double-acting baking powder

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp lemon zest

¾ tsp Ener-G egg replacer mixed with 1 tbsp plain rice milk alternative

½ tsp vanilla extract

1¾ cups my Basic Gluten-Free Flour Mix  or Authentic Foods GF Classical Blend

⅜ tsp xanthan gum

⅛ tsp salt

⅓ cup raspberry jam

confectioners’ sugar, for topping

 

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

In bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, mix shortening and sugar on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add baking powder, and mix until just combined. Add lemon juice, lemon zest, egg replacer and vanilla and mix for 30 seconds.

In a separate bowl, whisk together flour blend, xanthan gum and salt. Add flour mixture to shortening mixture and beat on low speed until thoroughly combined. You want it doughy but soft, so it can be balled together, like new playdough.

Scoop dough by the heaping tablespoon, roll into smooth balls and place on baking trays (12 per tray).

Lightly flour your index finger and make indents in the center of each ball. Gently pinch together the edges if they split. Fill each indentation with scant ½ teaspoon of raspberry jam.

Bake in center of oven for 18 to 20 minutes, or until jam is bubbling and cookies are just lightly golden around edges. Cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Prior to serving, dust with confectioners’ sugar. For bold red middles, lightly wet finger and trace over the jam surface to dissolve the confectioners’ sugar on the center only.

 

Allergy-Friendly Lemon Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies © 2013 by Cybele Pascal

This recipe first appeared in the Winter 2013 issue of Allergic Living Magazine

Allergy Friendly Butterscotch Bars

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Allergy-Friendly Butterscotch Bars

 

With a lack of allergy-friendly butterscotch chips on the market, I decided to create a homemade butterscotch base that would fulfill our sweet cravings. If you can use butter, feel free to substitute, but Earth Balance Buttery Spread makes darn good butterscotch for these moist and chewy bars. Please note that shortening isn’t a suitable replacement, since it doesn’t emulsify when heated.

Make these gluten-free, top 8 allergen-free, vegan bars of heaven for your end of summer picnics, or to send along to school for parties for a treat that will truly “wow”  the whole class!

 

Makes 16 2-inch bars

Free of: gluten and all top allergens

 

2 cups packed light brown sugar

½ cup dairy-free, soy-free margarine / buttery spread

1 tbsp Ener-G egg replacer mixed with ¼ cup canned coconut milk (shaken to distribute coconut cream)

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups my Basic Gluten-Free Flour Mix or Authentic Foods GF Classical Blend

2 tsp double-acting baking powder

½ tsp xanthan gum

¼ tsp salt

1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut

 

1. Combine brown sugar and margarine in a heavy pot over very low heat. Cook while stirring continuously until melted and just starting to bubble, about 10 minutes. Don’t rush or you risk burning the sugar. Remove from heat and let cool for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the sugar from setting up. It will become thick, like caramel.

2. Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease an 8×8-inch pan.

3. Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed beat in egg replacer until creamy. Mix in vanilla.

4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour blend, baking powder, xanthan gum and salt. Add dry ingredients to pot with butterscotch and mix on low speed until fully incorporated. Add coconut and mix until well-distributed.

5. Transfer dough to the prepared pan. Press dough to edges of pan and smooth into an even layer; it will be very sticky and dense.

6. Bake 30 minutes in center of oven, or until the dough has a rich golden hue, glossy top and is just beginning to pull away from edges of pan. Set on a wire rack and let cool completely in the pan. Use a serrated knife to cut into squares.

 

Allergy Friendly Butterscotch Bars © 2013 by Cybele Pascal

This recipe first appeared in the Holiday 2013 issue of Allergic Living Magazine