Gluten-free Baking for the Holidays: Cutout Cookies

Gluten-free author and expert, Jeanne Sauvage, just released a new cookbook titled, Gluten-Free Baking for the Holidays: 60 Recipes for Traditional Festive Treats (October 2012, Chronicle Books) ,” where she shares fabulous recipes the whole family can enjoy during this time of year including the Cutout Cookies recipe as pictured above.
Her passion for gluten-free baking shines in her cookbook. Parents and their kids will love making and baking her delectable treats to celebrate throughout the holiday season.

Today Jeanne shares a few baking tips, recipe suggestions, and her holiday cutout cookie recipe.

Kids will love expressing their creative side while painting cookies and parents will appreciate adding a fantastic gluten-free classic cookie recipe to their repertoire.

Q.  People love your home baked goods which happen to also be gluten-free.  Do you attribute this to your unique gluten-free flour ratio you developed for the recipes in your book?  

A.  Yes, I think a lot of the success of my recipes comes from the flour mix–I designed it to have the same characteristics of wheat all-purpose flour.


Q.  What is the most common mistake home baking enthusiasts make when baking gluten-free?

A.  The number one mistake is not following the recipe the first time.  I tell people to follow the recipe and see how it works before they start tweaking it.


Q.  What single piece of advice would you have for a beginning baker who has never baked gluten-free before?

A. Just do it.  Don’t be intmidated.  The worst that can happen is that is doesn’t work.   That’s OK–you compost that and start again.  You will get the hang of it by practicing.


Q.  Can you suggest a few gluten-free sweet treat recipes a child could happily share for a class party from your blog or book?

A. One of my most favorite (and requested) recipes for kids to share at class parties is my gluten-free Crazy Cake.  This recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free, soy-free, corn-free, and egg-free.  And it is delicious!  Kids always ask for more.  It’s so nice to share because it doesn’t have any of the top 8 allergens.  And, I include directions on how to turn the cake into cupcakes for a birthday party.  Chocolate chip cookies are always a hit.  I have several different recipes for them on my blog (one of these is also in my book).  They are easy to make and kids older than about 8 can make them by themselves with adult supervision.  The one that I like to make for gatherings is again, fairly allergy-free.  I call them “Old Fashioned Chocolate Chip Cookies” because they remind me of the cookies my grandmother made for us.  They are light and airy.  They are gluten-free, egg-free, nut free, corn-free, soy-free, and can easily be made dairy-free.  Again, don’t let the lack of ingredients fool you–this is one of my most requested recipes by family and friends!  Of course, for holiday parties, Cut Out Cookies can’t be beat.  The recipe I have in my book is terrific and is so easy for kids to make and have fun with (along with their adults!).  The special thing about these cookies is that the decoration icing is painted on instead of piped on.  I originally created this when my daughter was a toddler and she had problems piping on the frosting.  I made the icing more liquid, colored it with food coloring, gave her a set of brushes, and she (and I) happily spent many afternoons painting masterpieces on our cookies.  And they are delicious!

Thank you Jeanne!

Quick notes

Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour
Makes 4½ cups / 660 g

1¼ cups/170 g brown rice flour
1¼ cups/205 g white rice flour
1 cup/165 g sweet rice flour
1 cup/120 g tapioca flour
scant 2 tsp xanthan gum

In a large bowl, whisk together the brown and white rice flours, sweet rice flour, tapioca flour, and xanthan gum thoroughly. Transfer the mix to an airtight container. Store in a cool, dark place for up to 6 weeks or in the refrigerator for up to 4 months.

Jeanne’s website: The Art of Gluten-Free Baking

Photo credit: Clare Barboza

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