Christmas Spice but Gluten Free

Morning Readers are you ready for the upcoming big weekend? Has your chimney been swept? Is the pantry well stocked? Well if you answered “yes”, “yes” and “of course, yes” you have prepared for the Big Day and Santa will stop by with the long dreamed about this or that. However, if you are gluten free do you have treats that everyone will grapple for and savor? It can be difficult for those of us who are better off steering clear of gluten in any form, so as promised last week here is another treat that will disappear and you needn’t tell anyone it is gluten free just tell them it is savory and delicious.

Cheddar Cheese Crackers courtesy of Elana Amsterdam and the Gluten Free Almond Flour Cookbook

Makes 60 crackers

2 1/2 cups Bob’s Red Mill blanched almond flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup freshly grated cheddar cheese

3 tablespoons grapeseed oil

2 large eggs

Those are the ingredients as stated in the book. Now I will improvise a litttle, so this is not exactly as stated by Elana.

Set the oven to 350 degrees and cut four squares of parchment paper to fit on two flat sided cookie sheets. Place one sheet of parchment on each cookie sheet and reserve the other piece to place on top.

Mix the dry ingredients with your clean fingers to disperse all lumps and the rising agent. In a separate small bowl whisk the eggs and oil together (at this point I add a pinch of cayenne pepper or coarsely ground black pepper), add the cheese which should be a sharp cheddar for better flavor. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly until it is similar to tacky pie crust. Divide the dough in half and pat out in to a rectangle if you can or just a circle. Setting aside one half take the other half over to the parchment lined cookie sheet and place it in the middle. Cover with the other parchment sheet, grab your rolling pin and roll out the dough between the two sheets being careful not to lean to heavily on the outer edges but spreading the dough from the center out (I find the center is sometimes too thick to bake crisply, so if I press on the rolling pin at the center and release the pressure as I go to the edges it works better). Roll it out to about 2-3 millimeters on the edges, remove the top sheet of parchment and score the dough for small crackers the size of Cheese Nips or larger if you want to use them for spreads. Repeat this with the other half of the dough. Place both cookie sheets in the oven for 15-20 minutes until they are golden in color and when cooled slightly and tasted are crisp not soggy. Remove from oven and cool slightly so they can be handled with ease. Break them apart and cool completely.

You now have the perfect gluten free snack cracker that is high in protein, low in carbohydrates and unlike potato chips, corn chips, and pretzels these are so good for you it doesn’t pay to mention it. There are no unhealthy additives, no corn, no sugar, no soy and can be enjoyed with a totally clear conscious. If you are looking for other healthy snack alternatives the Gluten Free Almond Flour Cookbook is simply the best I have found and it is sold at Amazon.com($11.55) or Iherb.com($8.50).

My Christmas wish for you is that it will be a delightful family time, with everyone staying healthy and safe. Whether you are Christian or not this is a season of joy and holding hands, bouncing babies in your lap, petting needy animals, smiles, kisses and hugs because after all is said and done the best thing about Christmas is the days are already getting longer. Hurrah! and Merry Christmas! Ho! Ho! Ho!

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