Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Gluten-Free Peanut-Coconut Crunches

Even though you're never supposed to open with an apology, I have to apologize for the poor photography.  Our house is under complete remodel and I have no prep space to display anything.  So this is where all of the magic is happening:
  Despite only having a camp stove as a means of cooking anything, after a really bad week I was in desperate need of a homemade cookie.  So I decided to get creative with the no-bake variety of cookie. To make these delicious and completely gluten free cookies, this is what you need:

  • 1/2 cup of salted butter (unsalted should be fine, too, but some unsalted varieties have a gluten additive so be cautious)
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 cup of dry roasted peanuts (again, make sure they are gluten-free)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tsp. of gluten-free vanilla
  • 2 cups of Rice Krispies (make sure they are in the tan box that says "gluten-free."  I had to learn the other ones were not gluten-free the hard way)
  • 1/2 cup of coconut
  • 1 1/2 cups of chocolate chips (optional)

First, you need to melt the butter in a sauce pan or skillet over low heat.

Once the butter is completely melted, take it off the heat.  Add the sugar and the peanuts, mixing them well.  Return the sauce pan to the heat and cook the mixture for about 3-4 minutes over low heat.
Leaving the mixture on the heat, add the beaten egg.  You need to keep stirring vigorously as you add the egg or it will not combine with the butter-mixture.  Think that the faster you stir, the more cookies you can eat when you are done. :)
Once the egg is mixed in,  add the Rice Krispies, coconut, and vanilla and remove from the heat.  Immediately, take spoonfuls of the Rice Krispie mixture and roll it in to balls.  It may feel a little crumbly at first but they will firm up.  Spread the formed cookies out on a plate or baking sheet so they are not touching each other a refrigerate for about 30-45 minutes.
While the cookies are cooling, if your heart desires, melt the chocolate chips to coat the cookies.  You can melt them in the microwave or the stove but I prefer to melt them by placing a ceramic, heat safe bowl over boiling water and stirring the chocolate in the ceramic bowl until they are just melted.  The chocolate does not burn as easily this way.

Once the chocolate is melted and the cookies have cooled, you can coat the cookies with the chocolate for an extra-decadent treat.  

If these are a little too rich for you, they are also delicious without the chocolate.  Either way, this is a totally crowd-pleasing, gluten-free treat that can be made in even the most torn-apart kitchens.

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