Okay, I’m going to call an audible here.
(Is that a football term? I sort of have this vague feeling that it is, but I don’t want to google it and spend any time looking at football terms. I have to admit, I’m totally indifferent to football. I was going to type that I loath it, but that’s giving it too much of my time. Baseball? I could play that all day long. When it’s on the tv, my eyes are always drifting toward it. Soccer? Love that game. Lu will need to be on a pee-wee team soon, and I will love standing by the sidelines watching all the three-year-olds huddle around the ball, milling about aimlessly, and three of them picking their noses, oblivious. Sign me up. Basketball can be exciting, even if excessively sweaty.
But football? Man, I just don’t get it. I mean I understand the rules. I’ve had it all explained to me. I’ve watched the last 10 minutes of many Super Bowls. But wanting to watch an entire game, from start to finish, rapt with attention so that I don’t even move as someone in the house puts another beer in my hand? No way.
So, if “…calling an audible” is a football term, I apologize. I just want to talk about cookies right now.)
Here’s my audible. We were going to be bringing you chocolate sprinkle cookies today. Instead, it’s snickerdoodles.
Why? Well, we were Portland for the last two days. This morning we woke up in a crummy hotel, laughed at the crazy amazing news in our life, then started to drive home. Danny battled a dark monsoon rainstorm all the way up I-5. Lu read books and hummed to herself. I tried to do some work on the phone. By the time we all reached home, we were exhausted.
Danny just returned home from work (with a slice of that sweet potato cheesecake with a pistachio-cranberry crust in hand). Top Chef is on in 10 minutes. The roast chicken is almost ready to eat.
And those chocolate cookies deserve the light of day for photographs.
Besides, I bet you would like some snickerdoodles.
Snickerdoodles just sound silly, don’t they? They sound even sillier when you read that some sources insist the name comes from the German, meaning “snail noodles.” Honestly, that is just so damned funny to me right now that I would like to ask everyone to start calling these snail noodles. However, snickerdoodles is still a great silly word.
(Can I just say, in my sleep-deprived state where nothing is connecting directly in this piece, that we taught Lu to do some of the silly walks from the Ministry of Silly Walks sketch from Monty Python the other day? And that it was possibly the best thing I have ever seen?)
Carry on. Clearly, you don’t need to hear much more from me.
You need to get busy baking these snickerdoodles, which are literally the best snickerdoodles I have ever eaten. I don’t need no stinking gluten. Give me these cookies.
GLUTEN-FREE SNICKERDOODLES, adapted from Irvin Lin’s recipe on Eat the Love
The recipe for these snickerdoodles comes from the inimitable Irvin Lin. I had to resist typing “jackhonky,” because that’s his name on Twitter. Poor man, that’s what we call him in this house. When I see him in Seattle next month, after the big hug, and before we bake together all day, I will have to refrain from calling him Jack.
Soon, more and more people will know this talented man, whatever we call him. Irvin is the most naturally talented baker I have ever met. Not only does he bake up an apple slab pie with dried fall fruit, or blackberry lemon chess pie with honey jumbleberry sauce, or chocolate pavlovas with chocolate mascarpone sauce on a moment’s notice, but he is probably the most talented gluten-free baker I have ever had the privilege to meet. And he doesn’t have to be gluten-free.
Irvin has a friend who cannot eat gluten. And so, with no fuss and all aplomb, he began playing with flours and trying to make his cupcakes extraordinary without all-purpose flour. This is how I’d love for the food world as a whole to think of gluten-free baking: not someone standing off to the side of the parade, waving forlornly, but someone who has dived into the crowd, wearing slightly different clothes than the rest of the marching band but fabulous.
We cook food. We make cakes. We use more whole grains than most Americans do. And if you love baking, how can you not be playing with gluten-free ratios?
(By the way, pastry chefs, I’m pretty well convinced that muffins, quick breads, and possibly cakes are better without gluten than with it. Chew on that.)
So instead of writing out the recipe for these snickerdoodles with the small changes we made, I’m sending you over to Irvin’s recipe.
We simply replaced the various flours that Irvin used with 465 grams of our all-purpose flour mix. Other than that, we did everything he did.
And we suggest you do the same.
We’re offering one of our cookbooks to someone here. We do believe you’ll learn a lot about gluten-free baking from it, plus you’ll love the focaccia and seasonal berry pancakes. To win a copy of our cookbook, tell us about someone who has inspired you to become a better baker.