Monday, December 13, 2010

Vegan, Gluten Free Yummies!

Over on Facebook, somebody is hosting a Gluten Free Cookie Recipe Swap.  Gluten free baking is a challenge… mostly because gluten-free flours taste like… well…  let’s just be honest.  Gluten free flours can taste like cardboard.

As an aside, I lived in Guyana for a year.  Apparently, the Guyanese people who are my age grew up under a dictator who banned imports – including wheat flour.  Most of what they ate growing up was made of rice flour.  It’s grainy and yucky.  I cannot imagine growing up eating mainly rice flour.  When I lived there wheat was allowed, but even so, Guyanese baked goods didn’t taste very good to me.  And so, when I realized that my family has gluten sensitivities I resolved that we would not be eating desserts that taste like cardboard.  If it’s going to have that many calories, it’s got to taste great!

Here are some of the yummiest recipes I made for Papa the Farmer on his birthday.  If you like these recipes, be sure to go back to the Facebook Gluten Free Cookie Recipe Swap and click “like” on my recipes, so that people will know they are yummy and they should try them!

Of course, there is my now-famous recipe for allergy free fudge which was published over on the Blog:

And here are some new ones that I haven’t posted yet.  I hope you enjoy them!

“Peppermint Balls”
In a food processor, blend 4 cups of pecans and/or Walnuts, 4 cups dates, 4 cups fresh mint leaves and 1 cup carob powder.  Slowly add a couple of Tablespoons of water until the mixture reaches a doughy consistency.  Roll dough into little balls.  Chill in the fridge.

crunchy bars  “Crunchy Almond Bars”
(This recipe is inspired by a similar recipe in “Country Life Today” by Diana Fleming")
1/4 cup oil
1 Tablespoon liquid lecithin
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tablespoon vanilla
2/3 cup honey
1 1/2 or 2 tsp almond extract
1/2 cup finely chopped almonds.
1 cup gluten free oats
1 1/2 cups dry, uncooked millet.
In a bowl, beat the first seven ingredients.  Set aside.
In a coffee grinder, grind the gluten free oats into flour.  Add the gluten free oat flour to the first mixture.
In same coffee grinder, grind the uncooked millet into a flour.  Add to the first mixture.
Thoroughly mix first mixture with flours. 
In a well greased 9”x13” baking pan, spread the mixture out, patting down with your hands. 
Bake at 350 F for 30 minutes.
Cut into bars and serve.

Lemon Bar Variation:  omit almond extract and chopped almonds.  Add 1 1/2 tsp lemon extract and 1 1/2 tsp grated lemon rind.

oatmeal bars“Polynesian Bars”
(This comes from the cookbook “Country Life” by Diana Fleming)
1 cup dates, packed into cup
3/4 dried apricots, packed into cup
2 cups unsweetened orange juice
1 cup millet flour
1 3/4 cup gluten-free oats
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup coconut
1 cup finely chopped walnuts.
Soak dates and apricots in 1 1/2 cups orange juice for 10 minutes.  (Don’t be like me and think you can skip this step!  If you do, you might burn your blender out like I did.)  Then blend on high until fairly smooth.  Set aside.
Make Millet flour by blending 3/4 cup dry millet on high until flour consistency, stopping blender once to stir well.  Measure one level cup and pour into bowl.
Add remaining ingredients to the millet and rest of the orange juice, mixing well with hands.
Press half of mixture into bottom of 9”x13” oiled baking dish. 
Spread fruit filling evenly on top.
Crumble remaining half of mixture over filling.
Press into fruit lightly.
Bake at 300 degrees F for 45-60 minutes.


  1. Is there a substitute I could use for liquid lecithin?
    -Beka =)

  2. People often use vegetable oil as a substitute for liquid lecithin, which is less expensive, but of course, it's not as healthy. Let me know how it turns out for you!