“Imagine there is a bank account that credits your account each morning with $86,400. It carries over no balance from day to day. Every evening the bank deletes whatever part of the balance you failed to used during the day. What would you do? Draw out every cent, of course? Each of us has such a bank, it’s name is time. Every morning, it credits you 86,400 seconds. Every night it writes off at a lost, whatever of this you failed to invest to a good purpose. It carries over no balance. It allows no over draft. Each day it opens a new account for you. Each night it burns the remains of the day. If you fail to use the day’s deposits, the loss is yours. There is no drawing against “tomorrow”. You must live in the present on today’s deposits. Invest it so as to get from it the utmost in health, happiness, and health. The clock is running. Make the most of today.”
― Marc Levy
Good day, GFYYC readers!
Let’s be honest, people. Season changes are no fun. I personally tend to spend these transitional periods reflecting on the times past and the times to come. I reminisce about the humid air, the longer days, and the endless green life everywhere you turn. I look ahead to the twinkling lights adorning the neighbourhood, the magic of a silent snowy night, and the warm hot chocolate paired cuddles. When we’re in these transitions, it’s so easy to let the time pass us by. Then we look back and wonder where the time went. With my new little family, I really want to stop doing this. I want to embrace every day, every moment, every smile and coo, every hug. A couple of days ago, my 5 month old laughed for the first time and sent her father and me into fits of crying laughter. That was a definite highlight of our lives. I can’t sit around and let the days pass by, because every day counts.
My goal is to do something that lifts spirits whenever I can. Creating something and sharing it does that. This past week, I made just under 100 cookies for a holiday party baking exchange. The task required that I make half a dozen cookies for each family attending, and there were 10 families. I let the group know that none of them needed to make a batch of their dessert for our family and just the knowledge of everyone enjoying my baking would suffice. Being the gluten free family in a group isn’t the easiest, especially when it comes to dessert. To our delight, a few of them tried their hand at gluten free treats. We were given peanut butter cookies and more.
I opted to meddle with a recipe for Chocolate Crackle Cookies I found on Pinterest. Of course, I needed to make them festive. Though some would disagree, there’s a certain element of charm in adding a refreshing peppermint flavour to a rich chocolate dessert. When these are warm, they’ll remind you of a brownie. Once they cool, they are more cookie-like.
1/2 cup (110g) dairy free margarine (butter works too. I used Becel’s gf vegan margarine.)
1 cup (225g) white sugar
1 cup + 1 tablespoon (150g) All Purpose Gluten Free Flour
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon (75g) cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit, if your flour has gum added)
2 tbsp ground flax seed + 6 tbsp water, mixed OR 2 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon gluten free baking powder
1/2 cup of powdered sugar
1/3 cup of crushed candy canes
A couple of ingredient notes:
– The flax egg substitute is so far the only substitute I have tried with these cookies. I’m sure you could use a commercial egg replacer and have it work just as well. I’m not sure how well a chia egg would work out, but if you try it, let me know how it goes!
– I used Robin Hood’s GF Flour blend. You want to make sure you don’t skimp on the flour. If you don’t use enough, the dough becomes too soft and greasy and will absorb the powdered sugar into the cookie while baking. As a result, you don’t get the nice crinkle coating on the finished product.
– I sprinkled some extra crushed candy cane on top of each cookie once I flattened them with a fork. If you do this, take care to not put too much on or over bake in risk of ending up with a very hard cookie.
Preheat your oven to 350F.
Cream margarine and sugar in a large bowl, mix til combined well.
If you’re using flax eggs, make sure they’ve gelled together well. Add eggs, cocoa powder, flour, xanthan gum, and baking powder.
Using a rubber spatula, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure everything is mixed in.
If the dough is too soft and won’t roll into a ball nicely, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for a few minutes to harden it up. (Same concept as the oatmeal raisin cookies.)
In a separate bowl, mix your powdered sugar and crushed candy canes. The candy canes don’t need to be uniformly crushed, some texture is nice.
I packaged these up in cheery holiday bags, stacked up and tied with a silver ribbon. They were sprinkled with an extra teaspoon of the candy cane sugar mix on top of the stack before tying it up to look like snow.