or “cookies” for those with a slightly different lexicon
While I’m neither vegan nor gluten intolerant, I have friends who are one or the other and it’s nice to be able to bake things which I can share.
I’m pretty good at making gluten free versions of most cakes, muffins, and biscuits, but I often struggle to think of vegan alternatives to eggs. For some recipes, the egg is not really essential, but for certain things it’s needed to bind the other ingredients together. I had a hunch that using a thick coconut cream might do the trick, and it turned out to be correct (at least in this instance).
These turned out to have a crisp outside and a moist, crumbly center. The only thing I would do differently next time is use hazelnut meal instead of almond meal, to emphasize the hazelnut flavour.
3/4 cup of caster sugar
2 tbsp margarine
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup coconut cream – the thick, viscous kind
1½ cups gluten free flour
1½ cups almond meal
1 tsp baking powder
50g vegan chocolate
Preheat oven to 190 C (375 F)
Cream the sugar and margarine, add the coconut cream and vanilla and stir until it has a thick, creamy consistency.
Mix together the flour, almond meal, and baking power and gradually mix into to the wet ingredients. Add more flour and almond meal if necessary, until the dough is fairly stiff but you are still able to drag a wooden spoon through it.
Put aside 24 hazelnuts, and roughly chop the rest. If your chocolate is not already in chip form, chop that too. Fold nuts and chocolate into the dough.
Take teaspoon sized blobs, roll them around a bit with your fingers to smooth the edges, and press onto a lightly greased baking sheet. Pop one of the remaining hazelnuts on each biscuit, and bake on a high shelf for 12-15 minutes.
Place on a cooling rack. Try not to burn your fingers on any extra big blobs of molten chocolate!
Eat as soon as they are cool enough to pick up – or store in an airtight container and share with your friends.