Make Something New Every Day

This blog is inspired by all those who love to cook, whether experienced or not, and who continue to experiment with new ideas & ingredients, and best of all, share their passion with others.

The first entries are recipes prepared by the students of Lionel Wilson College Preparatory Academy in Oakland, CA. Fifteen students with varying cooking experience participated in my weekly workshop (via Tutorpedia), and successfully prepared various meals, snacks, and baked goods as part of an after-school program.

Along with the recipes from that class, I will continue to add new seasonal items, spanning every genre of the culinary world, as well as a helpful list of links to recipes, instructional videos, and places to shop and volunteer in your area.

Feel free to ask me questions and share your recipes and ideas as well. I look forward to cooking with you.

December 18, 2016

Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Blossoms

Why gluten-free, you ask? Not for me. I love the wheat. I love to bake with the wheat. But it makes me sad when people can't eat the wheaty baked goods, and so I GF. 

This batch is made with Bob's GF baking flour. There are different varieties, but I chose the one below because it has xantham gum, which helps add chewiness that's otherwise missing with GF flours, and it doesn't contain garbanzo bean flour, which has an unpleasant aftertaste. 

The cookies have a light, delicate crumb, and are softer if you underbake them just a bit - take them out when the edges just start to turn golden. 

1 1/4C light brown sugar
1C peanut butter (sadly, the crappy Skippy variety with shortening works best)
1/2C butter, softened (that's 1 stick)
2 extra large eggs, room temp
1t vanilla extract 
2C GF flour (I sifted it because it can get clumpy, but you don't have to)
[1/2t xantham gum - only if your GF flour doesn't have it]
1t baking soda
1/2t sea salt or kosher salt (I use kosher)
36 chocolate kisses, unwrapped 
white sugar for rolling

Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, cream the butter, peanut butter and sugar together until light & fluffy. I prefer using a good old hand mixer for these, but a stand mixer or brute force and a spoon will work just fine. Mix in the eggs and vanilla until smooth. Stir in the flour mixture, wrap with saran, and refrigerate for at least an hour, or overnight. 

Preheat oven to 375'. Line baking sheets with parchment. Use a small ice cream scoop or spoons to scoop balls of dough, roll lightly in your hands, toss in sugar, and flatten a bit. Place 12 per sheet, spacing them out so they don't touch when they spread. Bake 8-10 minutes. 

Slide the parchment onto a cooling rack. Immediately push a chocolate kiss into the center of each cookie (the sides will crack a bit). Allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight container, or serve after about 10 minutes of cooling. 

*Note: the kisses will melt but hold their shape as they cool and harden. Eating the cookies while still warm & melty is pure heaven! 

На здоровья!