Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Hazelnut Chocolate Chip Cookies


I've been baking gluten-free treats using Honeyville's Blanched Almond Flour for many years with much success. However, I was ready to try something new after a food sensitivity test revealed that I should avoid almonds. I asked Honeyville if instead of creating this month's recipe with almond flour if I could experiment with hazelnut flour instead. Honeyville agreed, and, well, here we are!

At first, I thought almond flour and hazelnut flour would bake up similarly, but I was wrong. I tried to swap the almond flour with hazelnut flour in my awesome Almond Flour Cookies recipe; however, the cookies were moist and greasy feeling, they spread really thin, and they totally fell apart (flaked) when you tried to pick one up. Fail.

While I cannot find a lot of information about the differences between hazelnut flour and almond flour in baked goods, my little experiment showed me that these two flours react quite differently in baked goods.

I then tried to create a cookie using the ratios I've been using when developing new recipes. A good cookie dough should contain 3 parts flour, 1 part sugar and 2 parts fat. However, what I didn't account for was the already high-fat content in the hazelnut flour, so these cookies were an epic fail and ended up in the trash as well!

Not ready to give up, I decided to go back to my almond flour recipe and make a few changes to address the issues I was having. I cut back on the fat (butter) and added more flour to decrease the moisture content. I then swapped white sugar for brown sugar to see if I could deter the cookies from spreading, and I included a new ingredient, ground flaxseeds (flaxseed meal), to help soak up any excess moisture from the high-fat hazelnut flour. 

The recipe worked this go-round and I netted a wonderfully moist, rich and slightly chewy, slightly crunchy gluten-free and grain-free cookie. I loved them! And they look so pretty too - like a perfectly round, soft-baked cookie should look!

The cookies ended up being a big hit at my house too. I saw my husband enjoy a few yesterday and then again this morning. 

If you make these cookies, I recommend enjoying them in moderation as they are made from a high-calorie flour (and contain sugar too). Chances are you'll be full after eating one cookie... like many desserts made with nut flours, these cookies are filling and leave you feeling full and satisfied. 

Recipe for Hazelnut Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies by Good For You Gluten Free 

Ingredients:
1/2 cup brown sugar
6 Tbsp. butter - room temperature
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla
2.5 cups Honeyville's Hazelnut Flour
2 Tbsp. flaxseed meal
1/2 tsp. baking soda
Pinch Kosher salt
1/2 cup chocolate chips


Directions:
Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Line baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking liner
In your standing mixer, cream together butter and sugar for about 30 seconds until well blended.
Add egg and vanilla and mix well on medium speed until combined.
In a small bowl, blend together flour, flaxseed meal, baking soda, and salt. 
Slowly add dry flour mixture into wet mixture until evenly mixed.
Fold in chocolate chips by hand.
Scoop small handful of the dough and roll with your hands into approximately 15 2-inch dough balls. Set each ball on baking sheet about 2 inches apart as the cookies will slightly spread.
Once all the dough balls are on the baking sheet, press gently on each to slightly flatten them.
Bake for 10-12 minutes until dough is set and edges are lightly browned.
Remove from oven and cool before serving.


For more delicious gluten-free recipes, please visit me - Jenny Finke - online at GoodForYouGlutenFree.com.

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