Thursday, February 21, 2008

One Recipe: Gluten-Free Graham Crackers, Cinnamon or Ginger Snaps, and Thin Mints

Last summer was my first summer of gluten-free, s'moreless camping. I was eight months into my gluten-free adventures, though, so I'd progressed past the point where I would have been sitting around the camp fire morosely drooling over everyone else's s'mores. I took my favorite chocolate chip-peanut butter-oatmeal cookies (which I need to get around to posting someday soon), intending to use them as graham cracker replacements. But unlike a conventional s'more, I found the cookie-s'more to be less than the sum of its parts. I tasted chocolate-peanut butter goodness and toasted marshmallow goodness but not as much of either as I wanted. So I ate them separately. No big deal.

But I'd like to be able to make a s'more, if I wanted one. So I started perusing the web for recipes. My problem with most graham cracker recipes, though, is that they contain an incredible amount of fat and sugar. They're more a cookie than the slightly sweet cracker I always ate as snacks growing up. I started tweaking recipes and came up with a whole-grain, no-starch graham cracker like those I remember....and three other variations. The latest turns the graham crackers into Thin Mints, which I've been craving ever since making Karina's Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies last week. Note: all of these recipes have been tested in the middle of the night, as I attempt to bore my 5-month-old into sleep!

Gluten-Free Graham Crackers

This recipe can be easily doubled--it makes a bunch of little crackers but not so many regular- sized ones. These crackers would make a swanky s'more dipped in chocolate with toasted marshmellows...or with homemade marshmellows dipped in chocolate...or both.

2 tbsp. teff flour
2 tbsp. gluten-free oat flour
2 tbsp. brown rice flour
2 tbsp. sorghum flour
1 tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cardamon
1/8 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. xanthum gum

1 tbsp. honey
1 tbsp. molasses
2 tsp. canola oil
1/4 tsp. vanilla
water (as needed)

Preheat the oven to 350. Mix the dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Mix the wet ingredients in a small bowl. Pour the wet ingredients into the flour mixture and stir until a smooth ball of dough forms. Add flour if the dough seems too sticky or a little water if it is too dry. Chill for 10 min. Divide the dough in half. Flour a surface and roll out one half to 1/8 in. thickness. Cut out in squares or using cookie cutters. Place on a greased baking sheet and bake for 10 min. Let the crackers cool on the tray until they are crisp. Makes about 3 doz. 1.5 inch cookies.

Now for the Variations!

Gluten-Free Cinnamon Snaps
Omit the cardamom and add 1/2 tsp. nutmeg. Increase the sweetener by 1 tbsp. white sugar and 1 tbsp. molasses. If you want a very crisp cookie, bake 1-5 min. longer.

Gluten-Free Ginger Snaps
Omit the cardamom and cinnamon. Add 1 tsp. ginger. Increase the sweetener by 1 tbsp. white sugar and 1 tbsp. molasses. If you want a very crisp cookie, bake 1-5 min. longer.

Gluten-Free Thin Mints
Girl Scout Thin Mints without all of the not-so-healthy ingredients! Omit the cardamom and cinnamon. Increase the sweetener by 1.5 tbsp. white sugar and 1 tbsp. molasses. Add 2-3 tbsp. cocoa (preferable a dark cocoa, like Hershey's Special Dark or Dagoba's). Add 1/2 tsp. peppermint extract with the vanilla extract. When the cookies are cool, melt dark chocolate, stir in 1/2-1 tsp. of peppermint extract, and dip cookies (on one side, or completely coated for an authentic Girl Scout experience).


Sally Parrott Ashbrook said...

What fun! I love these ideas. I keep wanting to take a week (or four) off from work so that I can actually take the time to find my way through various tasty recipes.

glutenfreeforgood said...

I love these variations you've come up with. Teff's a great ingredient for graham crackers. I've made my own as well, but not all these different options. Wow! Thanks for the ideas.
In good health,

Ghislaine said...

Hi, I just found your blog. I'm in Vermont too so I'm curious to know if you found Teff locally or ordered it online? I've got all the other ingredients to try the graham crackers! I can't wait!


Gluten Free in the Greens said...

Ghislaine: I'm in Montpelier so I buy teff flour (but, alas, not the grain itself) at the Hunger Mtn. Co-op. My experience is that they'll order just about anything for you, though, especially from a company like Bob's Red Mill that they stock so much other food from. I think I saw teff flour last weekend at Natural Living in Burlington (City Market doesn't have much though)--NL has a GREAT GF selection! I don't have much experience buying GF products in other parts of the state.

Ghislaine said...

Thank you! I'm in the Burlington area so I'll have to keep an eye out!