Wednesday, April 11, 2018

This Cookie is Spelt

It's been almost four years since I first sought a dietary answer to my continued digestive issues. From ill-informed experimentation with a low FODMAP diet to a prolonged course of trial and error with a registered dietician, I eventually figure out I couldn't eat corn, wheat, or soy. The dietician promised my gut would "settle down" over time. After two years of careful eating, my ability to process corn and limited amounts of wheat returned.

Still, no soy for another two years.

But even that is much better these days. It takes a few days of soybean gluttony for symptoms to appear and it's nice that I don't have to be so careful at every meal. In addition to achieving freedom from pain and gurgling, good habits were put in place during the course of my food-venture. Our family is more discerning about grains and I make many of the things we love gluten-free for variety. 

My intestines like variety as it turns out.

Since I have a wheat sensitivity, not celiac disease, I can eat gluten. That distinction brought Spelt to my attention. First, in the form of soup noodles, I found Spelt to be gentle on tum tum even when wheat was making me bloat. It contains gluten but the body processes it differently than wheat making it a safe haven of baked goods with a normal texture for the wheat insensitive set. Last weekend I bought a bag of Spelt flour for the first time.

Baking with Spelt is pretty straightforward (this is what Google will tell you). But it is more "water-soluble" than wheat so you'll probably need less liquid in your recipe. Oh, and it doesn't rise as high, so throw in more leavening. Also, try to avoid over kneading or mixing because it can get crumbly. You know, maybe just try replacing 1/4 of the flour in your recipe with Spelt and see if you like it. Next time, you can try to adjust the ratio.

I'm a bit of an all or nothing experimenter in the kitchen. I took my tried and true Chocolate Hermit recipe and did this:

The dough really didn't need much liquid at all.

Recipe for Chocolately Spelt Drop Cookies

3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
3 T cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup Bob's Red Mill 1-1 Gluten-free baking flour mix
1 cup spelt
1-2 T milk
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for several minutes
before moving them to a cooling rack.
Cream brown sugar and butter. Add egg and vanilla. Mix well. Blend in cocoa powder, baking soda, g-free flour and spelt. Add milk one tablespoon at a time until drop cookie consistency is reached. Stir in raisins and chocolate chips.

Bake at 350 for 12-14 minutes.

After baking for precisely 13 minutes these cookies were done to a perfect state of ever-so-slight crispness paired with a chewy ewy gooey inside. Family taste testers had several moments of closed eye culinary delight. 

Spelt is now the new family favorite.

In other news.... you can't be mad at the snow though, it's
been especially beautiful this spring.