On the day I moved here from Los Angeles, I remarked that Brooklyn is a small town with a big attitude. On the five blocks between my apartment and the train, I know all the owners of the delis, restaurants, coffee shops and bars. So a few years ago when a new restaurant opened up with a one year old in a high chair in its window, I was immediately smitten. I felt there was something special about this child. A while later, I stopped to introduce myself to her parents, then it was revealed to me – Suzy has food allergies to egg and peanut.
I saw Suzy the other day as I was walking to the train at the door of the restaurant. Pigtailed, and coated in a pink down jacket, she smiled and waved at me. I stopped and said Hello. She responded with one word – COOKIES. It was after Thanskgiving so I was slow to realize that she was asking me for CHRISTMAS COOKIES. Last year I had made a bunch of safe Christmas cookies for her and apparently she remembered.
To all children with food allergies everywhere, here is my recipe for cut-out Christmas cookies to help your days be merry and bright.
Based on Todd Adelman’s recipe from his book SPECIAL FOODS FOR SPECIAL KIDS
ALLERGY FREE CHRISTMAS CUT-OUT COOKIES
1/2 Cup Margarine or Spectrum Organic Shortening
3/4 Cup Sugar
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1 4oz unsweetened applesauce (or egg replacer + 1/4 c water)
1 Cup Glutinous Rice Flour (doesn’t contain gluten)
1/2 Cup Corn Starch or Tapioca Starch
3/4 Cup Maseca Flour
1 1/2 tsp vanilla (gluten free)
1 tsp baking powder (aluminum and gluten free)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp xanthan gum (optional)
Place dry ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
Cream margarine/shortening and sugar, then add to that the applesauce and vanilla. Beating by hand, combine the wet ingredients in the dry ingredients.
Place in the fridge until firm – but not overfirm, about 15 – 30 minutes, place parchment paper on a cookie sheet and dust with gluten-free flour, then roll or hand press onto the cookie sheet to 1/4 inch thickness and cut with cookie cutters.
The dough is very difficult to work with so cutting directly on the cookie sheet will ensure that the shapes remain.
Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 10 – 12 minutes
Enjoy the Holiday Season!