These are one of my go to cookies for just having at home. Everyone loves them, they keep really well in an airtight container on the shelf, everyone in our house can eat them (and we have a smorgasbord of food intolerances, luckily nuts is not one of them) and they are really, really easy, and because you are expecting that they are going to be ugly (fuglies) there is no pressure to get them perfectly shaped and crack free, though if you are that way inclined, go your hardest.
A lot of people are afraid of gluten free cooking, and it was a learning curve for me and I have been a chef for thirty years, a part of the problem is that it has been inhabited by recipes of astounding complexity and novel and expensive ingredients that most people have never seen before, xantham gum? Soy lecithin? Guar Gum? Not here. Gluten free baking is actually an enormous amount of fun and just requires techniques that are a little different and a little bit of special handling, here at the Cookie House you will never find oddball ingredients because I don’t believe that you need them, and if I put one in, you can be very sure that I will tell you why and what it is for.
You will rarely find grains here, because I can’t eat them, so if the grass family sets off your alarms (as it does mine), you have come to the right place.
As always, if you make these to my recipe, please send me a photo, either here or to my instagram account cookiehousekitchen so that you can go onto our Hall of Fame, which is used to inspire more tentative cooks into the kitchen.
Okay, enough of the soapbox, into the kitchen.
Makes about 900g, so, lots.
350g almond meal
80g tapioca starch (flour)
400g caster sugar
4 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C fan forced or 180 degrees C if you don’t have that function
Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
Add the egg whites, squish that all around with your hands to form a dough, if it refuses to come together (or you want the fuglies a little less crack-prone) you can add a smidge of water, but not too much or you will compromise their keeping qualities.
Good, now break off a heaped tablespoon full and roll it into a ball in your hands.
Now make a dint in it with your finger whilst flattening it out a bit at the same time, remember, how big the dent is will determine how much jam you get (I like a lot of jam).
Pop them on a lined baking tray, allowing a little room for spreading out, fill the divots with jam and into the hot oven!
Bake until they are starting to brown and are firm to the touch, they will take about 15ish minutes, if in doubt, lift one up and look at the bottom, it should be a nice golden brown.
Let them cool on the tray for a bit and then lift them onto a cooling rack, careful of the jam, it gets HOT. Cool completely and then pack into an airtight container and keep on the shelf (bet they don’t last long).
I am surprised at how much interest these funny little cookies have stirred up. I have a chocolate one I do and I have also been working on a healthy fruit and nut protein bar for Mr T based on this recipe, if you would like to see either of those let me know.
Have a great day.