Monday, December 3, 2012

Allergy-Free Cookies for National Cookie Day!

by Kelley Lindberg

Good news! This week we get to celebrate National Cookie Day! That’s right, December 4 is National Cookie Day, a time when we come together to remember all those cookies that have made a difference in our life. After all, where would we be without them?

In honor of this most venerable of holidays, I blew the dust off my recipe box and went on a treasure hunt for one of my son’s favorite cookie recipes. I got this recipe for Cherry Cookies from the Salt Lake Tribune several years ago, and it’s credited to Pam Pettigrew. Of course, I had to make a few alterations to make it allergy-friendly. It does contain coconut and wheat flour (although you can probably substitute your favorite gluten-free flour), and there’s corn syrup in the maraschino cherries (maybe you could try a safe cherry preserves if you're avoiding corn?). My son and his friends love them.

Do you have a favorite allergy-friendly cookie recipe you’d be willing to share? Post it in the comments (or post a link to its website if your favorite recipe is online) and please give credit to the source where you found it, or tell us if you invented it yourself!

Remember, as you’re baking cookies for National Cookie Day, bake up an extra batch or two (or three!) and put them in the freezer for all those holiday parties, co-worker gifts, and neighbor gifts that are coming up. Cookies freeze really well, assuming you have any left over to freeze. That doesn’t happen often in my house.

And one more tip: Don’t have time to bake? There are allergy-friendly cookies on the market now, like those from Enjoy Life Foods (available at Whole Foods and other markets). If you have a favorite allergy-friendly store-bought cookie, share that with us, too!

Thanks for sharing your favorite recipes. Hope you enjoy this one, and have a happy National Cookie Day!

Cherry Cookies

(source: Pam Pettigrew, with modifications by Kelley Lindberg)
  • 2 c. flour
  • 1 c. firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 c safe shortening
  • 1 egg substitute *(see below)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 T rice milk
  • 1/2 c. maraschino cherries, chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 c. shredded, sweetened coconut
*(For an egg substitute, I like to use Ener-G egg replacer, but I’ve also used 1 tsp baking powder mixed with 1 T white vinegar and 1 T water, and that works great, too. I haven’t tried using 1/4 c. applesauce, but that might work, also. Use whichever egg substitute you prefer when baking.)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, baking soda, and salt. Add shortening, egg substitute, vanilla, and rice milk and mix well. Stir in cherries and coconut. Drop by spoonful on cookie sheet. (I like to line a cookie sheet with parchment paper so the cookies slide right off.) Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Makes 2 1/2 dozen cookies.

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