Truth, you guys: I secretly want to be a food blogger. (Well, guess the cat’s out of the bag now!) I know my way around a kitchen, but more than that, I just love the process around food-making (not so unlike writing), and I love the way food bloggers are always so matter-of-fact yet earnest about that process. My fave food blogs? Check out Cook With What You Have by my dear friend Katherine Deumling (and if you’re looking for a last-minute gift, her recipe subscription service is a winner), Conscious Food Choices by my sister-in-law Jorin Hawley, and the terrific Rachel Eats.
So for all these years of blogging about writing and parenthood and other things, I’m not sure I have ever posted a recipe. But hey, if Donald Trump can get elected, anything is possible. So here goes. I’m only sorry I didn’t take photos as I went!
After Thanksgiving, a friend on Facebook posted this recipe for cranberry clove cookies, as a way to use up leftover cranberry sauce, and they looked delicious. (Besides, I had about three cups of leftover cranberry sauce in the fridge.) But being gluten-free, I couldn’t eat them as is. I tried just subbing in an equal amount of America’s Test Kitchen gluten-free flour mix that I had on hand for the flour in the recipe, but the cookies came out insanely greasy and spreading all over the place. So I got out some cookbooks, did some experimenting, and tried again.
Herewith, my recipe. They’re perfect holiday cookies, unusual, delicious, rich, and gluten-free. Enjoy!
Gluten-Free Cranberry Thumbprint Cookies (adapted from a recipe by Moriah VanVleet)
1 3/4 c. America’s Test Kitchen gluten-free flour blend**
3/4 cup of gluten-free oats, coarsely ground in the food processor
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon xanthan gum or ground chia seed (I always use chia these days)
12 tablespoons of butter (1 stick and a half), chilled and cut into 1/4 inch slices
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
finely grated zest of one orange
1/2 cup cranberry sauce
In your stand mixer, if you have one, mix the flour blend, ground oats, salt, cloves and chia seed until blended. Add your butter and let the machine run until the dough comes together (5 minutes, at least). Add vanilla and orange zest and briefly combine.
Roll the dough into small-ish balls and place on a parchmented or sprayed cookie sheet. Flatten slightly and use your thumb or index finger to create a little indentation in each. Put the cookie sheets in the freezer for 5-10 minutes while you preheat your oven to 350º. After the dough has chilled, fill each indentation with a tiny blob of cranberry sauce.
Bake for 18-20 minutes until golden. Cool completely before eating.
** Note: you could probably sub in your GF flour blend of choice or even a packaged flour like King Arthur or Bob’s Red Mill. I had some of the ATK stuff on hand, so I used it, but I make it a little differently than the recipe calls for in the first place.
Happy holidays—and happy eating!