Chocolate Chip Brownies

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These chocolate chip brownies come from a friend with extensive gluten-free baking experience and are delicious.  If, for some reason, you want fewer brownies, you can halve the recipe, use an 8″ x 8″ or 9″ x 9″ pan, and bake for about 25 minutes.

 

Chocolate Chip Brownies
Recipe courtesy of a friend

Yield: 9″ x 13″ pan of brownies

  • 1 cup butter, melted
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs
  • 2/3 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/3 cup tapioca starch
  • 2/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • ~2/3 of a 12-oz bag of semisweet chocolate chips

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Line a 9″ x 13″ pan with parchment paper.  (This is important, otherwise the brownies will stick to everything.)
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix together butter and sugar.  Then mix in vanilla and eggs.
  3. Add brown rice flour, tapioca starch, cocoa powder, baking power, and salt.  Mix well.
  4. Stir in chocolate chips.
  5. Pour mixture into pan and bake for 30-35 minutes.
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Japanese Fruit Jelly

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Japanese fruit jelly is a light, pretty dessert that is perfect after a heavy meal or on a warm day.  If you’re bringing them to a party, you can easily scale up the recipe.

Original recipe

 

Japanese Fruit Jelly
Adapted from Just One Cookbook

Yield: 5 servings

  • 1 (0.25-oz) pack gelatin powder
  • 1/4 cup boiling water
  • 1 (15-oz) can mandarin oranges OR peach chunks in heavy syrup
  • 1/4 cup sugar

 

  1. In a bowl, place gelatin powder and pour in boiling water.  Stir to dissolve gelatin completely.
  2. Add sugar to bowl and whisk until dissolved.
  3. Drain canned fruit, reserving syrup in a measuring cup.  Add enough water to syrup to make 1 cup.
  4. Stir syrup mixture into gelatin mixture.
  5. Divide canned fruit among 5 serving glasses.
  6. Pour gelatin mixture over fruit, and cool to room temperature.  Cover with plastic wrap and store in refrigerator until set completely (it takes several hours).

Banana Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

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Sometimes when you’re baking pumpkin desserts, you just happen to have a bit of pumpkin puree left over.  You can combine it with bananas in muffins.  It won’t have a very strong flavor compared to the bananas, but you can add some cinnamon to spice up the muffins.

 

Banana Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
Inspired by All Recipes

Yield: 12 muffins

  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large, ripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Line a muffin pan with liners.
  2. Mix together sugar, egg, and butter in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Mash the bananas into the mixture.
  4. Stir in pumpkin puree.
  5. Stir in baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon (if using).
  6. Stir in flour.
  7. Stir in chocolate chips, if desired.
  8. Scoop into muffin pans and bake for 27 minutes.

Gooey Chocolate Cakes

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This is one of those wonderful recipes that taste just as delicious whether gluten free or not.  The cakes have an intense chocolate flavor and are warm and gooey inside.  They’re so rich that you have to pair them with ice cream or whipped cream.

 

Gooey Chocolate Cakes
Adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From My Home to Yours

Yield: 6 cakes

  • 1/3 cup gluten-free OR all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 ounces bittersweet chocolate (4 ounces coarsely chopped, 1 ounce very finely chopped)
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • Ice cream or whipped cream, for serving

 

  1. Center a rack in the oven and preheat to 400ºF.  Generously butter (or spray – it’s easier) 6 cups of a regular-size muffin pan, preferably a disposable aluminum foil pan, dust the insides with flour, and tap out the excess.  Put the muffin pan on a baking sheet.
  2. Sift the flour, cocoa, and salt together.
  3. Set a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of gently simmering water, put the coarsely chopped chocolate and the butter in the bowl, and stir occasionally over the simmering water just until they are melted – you don’t want them to get so hot that the butter separates. Remove the bowl from the pan of water.  (Alternatively, you can very carefully heat the chocolate and butter directly in a small non-stick pot over very low heat, stirring constantly.)
  4. In a large bowl, whisk eggs and yolk until homogenous.
  5. Add sugar and whisk until well blended, about 2 minutes.
  6. Add dry ingredients and, still using the whisk, stir (don’t beat) them into the eggs.
  7. Little by little, and using a light hand, stir in the melted chocolate and butter.
  8. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups and sprinkle the finely chopped chocolate over the batter.
  9. Bake the cakes for 13 minutes if gluten free, OR 12-13 minutes if not.  Transfer them, still on the baking sheet, to a rack to cool for 3 minutes. (There is no way to test that these cakes are properly baked, because the inside remains liquid.)
  10. Line a cutting board with a silicone baking mat or parchment or wax paper, and, after the 3-minute rest, unmold the cakes onto the board.  Use a wide metal spatual to lift the cakes onto dessert plates.  Serve immediately with ice cream or whipped cream.
  11. Store leftover cakes in an airtight container at room temperature.  The next day, warm in the microwave for about 15 seconds to restore the gooeyness.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I decided to experiment with xanthan gum, and I discovered that it does do wonders for structural integrity – these chocolate chip cookies were actually lightly domed!  However, they would still taste fine without it, so I consider it optional.  Pair these cookies with ice cream if you feel really decadent.

Original recipe

 

Big Fat Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from All Recipes

Yield: 40 cookies

  • 2 cups gluten-free flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum (optional)
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup white OR brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

 

  1. Preheat oven to 325ºF. Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat together the melted butter and sugar until creamy.
  3. Beat in vanilla and eggs until light and creamy.
  4. Beat in baking soda, salt, and xanthan gum if using.
  5. Mix in flour.
  6. Stir in chocolate chips by hand using a wooden spoon.
  7. Drop cookie dough 1 tablespoon at a time onto the prepared cookie sheets. Cookies should be 2-3 inches apart.
  8. Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until the edges are lightly toasted and tops are golden.
  9. Cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

Spago Cheesecake

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This cheesecake is rich and creamy and translates well to gluten-free-ness.

Baking notes:

  • With a hot water bath during baking, it’s a little scary to remove the pans from the oven, but I found that placing the pans on a large baking sheet decreases the risk of burning yourself.
  • If you’re impatient and don’t mind a slightly warm cheesecake, you can eat it the same day you bake it.

Original recipe

 

Spago Cheesecake
Adapted from Wolfgang Puck

Yield: 9-inch cake

Crust:

  • 1/2 cup gluten-free flour
  • 1/2 cup pecans (or walnuts), finely chopped OR 1/2 cup gluten-free flour
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar OR 2 tablespoons white sugar+dollop molasses
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

Filling:

  • 1 1/2 pounds cream cheese, at room temperature, cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup sour cream OR plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs

 

  1. Position the rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350ºF.  Butter or coat with nonstick spray, the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.
  2. In a large bowl, assemble all the ingredients for the crust.  Mix them together with your hands.  If using nuts, the mixture will resemble very small pebbles.  If using only flour, the mixture will resemble damp sand.
  3. Press the crust into the bottom of the springform pan, covering the base completely and evenly. Wrap heavy-duty aluminum foil, or two layers of regular foil, around the pan’s bottom and halfway up its sides, pleating the foil to tighten it securely.
  4. Bake the crust for 10 minutes. Because it’s gluten free, it will remain light in color.  Remove from the oven and set aside.
  5. To make the filling: Put the cream cheese, sugar, and salt in the large bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle or beaters or in a large mixing bowl. Using the stand mixer or a hand mixer on medium speed, beat the ingredients until smooth, stopping often to scrape down the sides of the bowl and under the blades with a rubber spatula.
  6. Turn the speed high and continue to beat until mixture is creamy.
  7. Stop the mixer and add the sour cream OR plain yogurt, rum, lemon juice, and vanilla; then, on medium speed, continue beating until well blended.
  8. Add the eggs and beat just until combined.
  9. Scrape the filling into the prepared springform pan.
  10. Bring a kettle of water to a boil. Place the springform pan inside a slightly larger baking pan. Use an oven glove, pull out the oven shelf and place the baking pan on it. Pour enough hot water into the pan to reach halfway up the sides of the springform pan, but not above the foil. Carefully slide the shelf into the oven and bake the cheesecake until its top is slightly golden and slightly firm in the center, about one hour and 10 minutes.
  11. Carefully remove the baking pan from the oven. Lift out the springform pan and place it on a wire rack to cool, carefully folding down the foil on its sides to promote quicker cooling. When the pan is cool enough to touch, completely remove the foil and continue cooling. When the cheesecake is completely cool, cover the pan loosely with a clean sheet of foil and refrigerate overnight.
  12. When ready to serve, remove the cheesecake from the refrigerator. Dip a long, sharp knife in warm water and run the knife around the inside of the springform pan to loosen the cake. Remove the outer ring. Continue to dip the knife into warm water as necessary as you cut neat wedges.

White Chocolate Lime Truffles

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Truffles are fun and relatively simple to make, not to mention gluten free.  If you like white chocolate and lime, you should give these a try!

Original recipe

 

White Chocolate Lime Truffles
Adapted from The Spruce

Yield: 16 truffles

 

  • 1/3 cup+1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 1/4 cup (9 ounces) white chocolate, chopped OR white chocolate chips
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup shredded coconut (optional)

 

  1. Combine cream and lime zest in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Heat until it starts to simmer and bubble around the edges.
  2. Immediately remove pan from heat and cover with a lid, allowing the cream to infuse for 20 minutes.
  3. While cream is steeping, combine white chocolate, salt, and butter in a large microwave-safe bowl.
  4. Microwave for 45 seconds, to begin to melt chocolate and butter.  Set aside.
  5. After cream has steeped for 20 minutes, return pan to stove and reheat, stirring occasionally, until it once again reaches a simmer.
  6. Remove from the heat and stir in lime juice.
  7. Place a wire mesh strainer over the bowl of chocolate and butter, and pour hot cream through the strainer over the chocolate.  Press down on the lime zest in the strainer with a spoon to extract all of the remaining juice.
  8. Gently whisk cream and chocolate together, stirring until the mixture is smooth and all of the chocolate has melted.
  9. Cover the surface of the chocolate with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm enough to roll, at least 4 hours or overnight.
  10. While chocolate is chilling, if desired, prepare coconut topping by chopping it by hand or in a food processor.  You’ll want to get it as fine as possible, otherwise it will be difficult to roll and won’t taste as good.
  11. Once the chocolate has set sufficiently, use a teaspoon to scoop a ball from the chocolate and roll it between your hands until it is round.  If using the coconut, roll the truffle in the chopped coconut until it is completely covered.
  12. Repeat with the remaining chocolate.
  13. Store truffles in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.  Bring them to room temperature before serving.