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Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies~Cooking with Expandex

Posted May 07 2009 9:23pm

It was one of those perfect chocolate chip cookie afternoons~

We were all exhausted from the week . . .

The Middle Child worked hard this week to perfect her role as Narrator 5 in the school production of the Merchant of Venice,

The Gluten Free Teen was busy, well, just being a Gluten Free Teen,

The Weekend Chef was slammed at his day job (join the crowd these days),

And Mom was just plan tired.

In lieu of skiing we decided to stay home and rest and recuperate from the week.

Then it started to snow.

Springsnow

We have seen our share of snow this year (and this is Seattle, it really is not supposed to snow that much here)

But no matter how much it snows, it is still fun.

Everything gray, or green since this is Seattle, becomes covered in the purity of whiteness.

Everything is brighter,

And I love how quiet it is  . . ..

The kids went out to play in the snow,

The Weekend Chef lit a fire in the fireplace,

And I put my apron on.

I ordered some Expandex a few weeks back and I was dying to try it.

If you have not heard of it before, it is a modified tapioca starch that is claimed to enhance gluten free baking. According to others, it will make your gluten free baked goods rise better, brown better and just plan taste better. More like wheat baked goods.

Jules has made a flour blend that contains it and has become a rage to some gluten free bakers.

Several gluten free bakeries are already using it and they produce some tasty treats.

Even Carol Fenster has included some recipes using it in her book 1,000 Gluten-Free Recipes

So I had to try it.

I have to add a word of "I wonder about this" before getting to the results.

The entire "modified" part is a little concerning to me. Like most of you, the transition to a gluten free diet has ultimately resulted in the transition to a much healthier diet – I know I am not the first one who has started noticing all of the other questionable ingredients on the labels of some processed foods such as high fructose corn syrup and GMO’s which are genetically modified ingredients. If you don’t know about these two ingredients, you should.

If I am going to work so hard to feed my family good food, then it is going to be reasonably healthy as well. Not that Chocolate Chip Cookies are healthy, but my home made ones are not going to have GMO’s in it.

Thus, I am not sure where I stand on whether or not Expandex is an okay ingredient. All that is clear about it is that it is modified in some way – how, with what is yet unknown. I have sent Expandex the link to this post and am hoping they email me back with some information. Do any of you know anything more about this ingredient?

That being said, I have to admit that the cookies were absolutely fabulous. I used a recipe off the Expandex site, but I modified it considerably since it was listed in volume and it contained high fructose corn syrup, and the first batch was slightly flat.

My family absolutely loved these cookies – there is no way that anyone could tell the difference between these and a good old Nestly Tollhouse cookie.

So it is up to you to decide how you feel about Expandex, but I can guarantee you that these are fabulous cookies –

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies made with Expandex

Chocchipcookies

1 ½ cups Expandex Modified Tapioca Starch

½ cup sorghum flour

½ cup brown rice flour

¼ cup corn starch

1 t xanthan gum

1 ½ t baking soda

1 t salt

1 1/4 cup butter (use Earth Balance for casein free)

1 1/4 cup brown sugar

1 cup sugar

3 large eggs

2 t vanilla extract

1 10 ounce package chocolate chips (Use Tropical Source or Enjoy Life for casein free)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Thoroughly mix all dry ingredients. Either add them all to a one gallon size bag and shake, shake, shake or add all of the dry ingredients to a bowl and mix with a whisk.

Cream the butter (or Earth Balance) until it is white and smooth. Add the sugars and cream for 5 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix for one minute on a medium blender speed.

Gradually add the dry ingredients on a low or "stir" speed.

Fold in the chocolate chips by hand.

Put the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to let it firm up – go ahead, have a lick, it is delicious (actually the dough has raw eggs, so lick at your own risk but we could not help ourselves)

Use an ice cream scoop or a tablespoon, place dough on the cookie sheet that has been lined with parchment paper.

For us, 11 minutes produced the absolute perfect cookie.

Follow this link for information on where to buy Expandex.

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