Welcome To My Gluten Free Website!

Welcome To My Website!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Sugar Polka-Dot Cookies

I have two very good, no, great tasting sugar cookie recipes to share with you. This first one today is an adaptation from a recipe on the back of a sugar bag. I think they look like big polka-dots. Or as my youngest daughter Chelsea called them when she was little - Po Po Dops! 

When reading a food box or bag, don't you just love how we're roped in to try another recipe, which
means technically that one will need to purchase more of whatever the ingredient was in the container. Got it. Thanks, corporate food companies. Yeah, it's hard doing without them, and they know it, very, very well!

This just-past weekend was very strange. I found myself listening to soulful Celtic Women cd's, which then put me into a heightened awareness of emotions about the last couple of months and all they entailed. My son, my husband, and my older brother have now spent time in the hospital for tests, emergencies, and surgeries. This to me doesn't really open the new year on new sure footings, more likely precarious at best. But then as I examined these precarious footings I became aware of an old tried and true pattern of my/our lives. Basically we live in an emergency state at all times, which is due to my son's horrendous birth. I've borrowed time, and adrenaline so many times I'm surprised that I have any left! Unfortunately I recently was reassured that I indeed have a lot left.

Quite often after the big shakeup of the emergency event I find I have a need/want to bake and cook. Maybe I feel like that will make them feel better, whoever "them is" at the time. I know what each person in my life likes in the way of baked goods. For instance my bother-in-law isn't a sweet eater with one exception, he loves and I mean loves pumpkin pie! So I could bake one (or two) any time of the year for him and he's exceptionally happy. 

Sometimes it's hard to decide what I want to focus on. Develop a new recipe from an old favorite? Sharpen up one I've already worked on? Pick or develop something new? Hmmm. I usually rummage around in my stacks of magazines, peruse my multiple shelves of cookbooks, or hunt on the internet. Sometimes inspiration comes quickly. All in all I always find something that sounds good, and that I know I'll be able to tweak to our taste buds. Point in fact, I read a recipe on the back of a bag yesterday that called for mustard and some rather odd choices of herbs and spices in a biscuit recipe. Uh, no. Huh uh. To someone else it may sound really good, just not to me. This is exactly the kind of inspiration I need, to take that recipe and dissect it, tweak it until it's how we like it and then present it to you.

Ever notice how many sugar cookie recipes there are in the world?! I've tried so, so many. My Mom has one she loves and swears by for cut outs, sorry, it's just not my favorite. People email them to me. Friends and other family members have shared their recipes. So I've collected quite a few in these years of cooking, and have them finally culled down to a small handful. Some are great cut outs, some are great for adaptability to other flavors and additions, and then there are the "spoon" cookies, or now it would be "scoop" cookies. Those are such wonderful toys aren't they, the scoops? Love them for all kinds of things.

Let's bake! 

Gluten Free Sugar Polka-Dot Cookies                                          Makes about 36 cookies

If you haven't made Jeanne's GF AP Flour Blend yet, do that first. I've included the bulk recipe here:

Jeanne's Gluten Free AP Flour Blend - blend well and keep in covered container for storage
           1 1/2 cups brown rice flour
           1 1/2 cups white rice flour
           1 cup tapioca flour/starch
           1 cup sweet rice flour
           2 teaspoons xanthan gum

3 cups of Jeanne's GF AP Flour Blend
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar, plus extra for rolling the cookie dough balls
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Pre-heat oven to 350°F.
Non-stick spray two baking sheets and line each with parchment paper.

1. In a large mixer bowl with the paddle attachment on medium speed, beat the butter and sugar until creamy. Turn the mixer down to low and add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each one. Add the vanilla and mix just until blended.
2. In a separate medium bowl, mix the flour blend, baking powder, and salt. Add the flour blend 1/2 cup at a time to the butter mixture, mixing well until blended, then beat on medium-high speed for 2 minutes.
3. In a pie plate or flat baking dish, pour some sugar for rolling the dough balls. Using a 1/4 cup scoop, scoop several balls directly into the sugar dish, then roll them around to coat them completely, and place each one about 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet.
4. Bake cookies for 6-8 minutes. You only want the cookies to stay white and the bottoms to hint at turning light golden brown. If you over bake them, they will turn tough and dry.

5. Let cookies cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer to a wire cooling rack. Store them at room temperature in a tightly covered container.