Thursday, August 6, 2009

Whole Grain Zucchini-Oat Cookies

I adapted these from my Mom's recipe for whole-wheat zucchini oat cookies. I love having a variety of wheat-free, egg-free, nut-free, non-dairy cookies on hand in the freezer- from pumpkin to zucchini to banana... fruit and vegetable purees really help make great cookies without needing wheat or eggs. These are flavorful, moist, and nutritious enough for snacks.
These cookies are flexible to adaptations- try what I first list, or substitute other items you have on hand. What I list first is what I have made and know that I like. For example, for the margarine substitution, I do like the cookies best with some coconut oil substituted for margarine, but there are several other good alternatives.

Whole Grain Zucchini-Oat Cookies

1/4 cup oil and 1/4 cup coconut oil*
3/4 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup applesauce & 1 tsp. baking powder mixed with 1 1/2 T. oil and 1 1/2 T. water(mix just before adding to recipe) OR other egg substitute for 2 eggs**
1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon(optional- I forgot it in my recent experiments and they were great without it)
1 1/4 cup quick oats(use 1 c. gluten-free flour blend if not using oats)
3/4 cup brown rice flour
3/4 cup oat flour(grind rolled oats in blender)
1/2 tsp. xanthan gum

2 cups zucchini, grated
1/2 cup coconut, flaked
1/2 c. chocolate chips(I use Enjoy Life brand), and/or raisins

Beat oil and sugar until fluffy. In separate bowl, combine baking soda, cinnamon, oats, and flour. Set aside. Add vanilla and applesauce to oil and sugar. Mix baking powder, oil, and water in small container, then add to applesauce, sugar, and oil. Mix together. Add zucchini and coconut. Blend. Add dry ingredients from bowl and mix until well blended. Add chocolate chips or raisins last.

*coconut oil is optional- I use it because it adds a delicious dimension to the cookies, and because I think it probably improves texture- it is more solid than most oil, so could allow for more fluffiness. You could alternately use 1/2 cup oil, 1/2 cup shortening, or 1/2 cup non-dairy margarine sticks or spread.

*other suggested egg substitutes: 1 T. flaxseed meal + water to equal 1/3 cup; mix with fork and allow to sit and "gel" for 10 min. before adding to recipe; this is a good binder to use alternatively to applesauce. Also add 1 tsp. baking powder mixed with 1 1/2 T. oil and 1 1/2 T. water(mix just before adding to recipe) This provides substitute for two eggs, applesauce is to bind and leavening is to lighten. Another suggested egg substitute: Ener-G Egg Replacer.

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