Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Gluten free cherry chocolate chip cookies in the name of hope

Yesterday felt like a holiday. Everyone around the world was celebrating and you could feel a lightness in the air. In the words of a colleague, "not even technology glitches could be taken seriously," on such a wonderful day.

Even I have to say I felt a sense of calm, even as stock numbers dropped yet again. It was a day for hope; a day in which we sense a light at the end of the tunnel, even if we can't yet see that light.

I know this inauguration day doesn't provide change or improvements or solutions to unemployment, overseas relations, or failing banks. However, it provides an opportunity for all of those things - and that opportunity is what I think gives us a feeling that it might be worth placing our faith in our government, getting involved, and doing whatever possible we can to recover from the last 8 years.

It was certainly a day worth celebrating.

And what celebration is complete without food?? The "official" inauguration cupcakes featured on the Today show yesterday morning looked absolutely delicious - I had to have one, needed one. I craved chocolate all day long after seeing those moist, decadent, frosted chocolate cupcakes.

Needless to say, I came home from work and baked cookies - but not just any cookies - double chocolate cherry cookies. I planned on making regular chocolate chip cookies...or maybe banana chocolate chip cookies...or maybe coconut...but then remembered the frozen pitted cherries I had hanging out in my freezer - and so a cookie was born. These babies are incredibly rich and by no means need frosting, but if you get the itch, go for it.

Gluten free double chocolate cherry cookies:

The secret to making these ultra-delicious is using frozen, pitted cherries, not dried. Chop them up into quarters or halves (depending on the size of your cherries). Also, just like regular chocolate chip cookies - use room temperature butter (not cold, not melty). If your butter is straight from the fridge, heat it in the microwave for a few seconds at a time, rotating it in all directions until it is perfectly soft.

Cream together:

14 tablespoons butter

1 cup raw (turbinado) sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

add: 2 eggs

Mix together:

1 cup brown rice flour

1 cup tapioca flour

1/2 cup sorghum flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon xanthan gum

5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (I use Dagoba)

Mix the flour mixture with the butter mixture and then stir in:

1 generous cup chopped cherries

1/2 package chocolate chips (I use Guittard)

Heat oven to 350F.

Line your cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silpat mat and drop cookies by the teaspoonful (mine were a bit generous) about an inch and a half apart.

Bake for approximately 16-18 minutes, until cookies are set. Cool a couple of minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Enjoy the chewy, chocolaty heaven!

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