The Boy Makes… Gluten Free Peanut Butter and Banana Cookies

The hottest day of the year yesterday and today? Pah. Gloomy, murky, rainy! What the dickens is going on? It’s July for goodness sake. Well there really was little else for it we needed to bake today and something comforting on this warm/cold/murky/grey July day. Happy British Summertime.

Like many of our forays into the kitchen I looked in the cupboards, saw what we had, and googled the ingredients for inspiration. That’s when I found this recipe over at the awesomely name Yammie’s Noshery. The beautiful photos won me over and I just had to give them a go.

So I got the bowls out, called Oscar over and told him to get get a chair to stand on. And he did! Lets just take a moment there to marvel at that fact. Ahhhhhh. Right, so anyway the cookies, yes?

Peanut Butter and Banana Cookies

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These were great to make with the boy as unlike recent attempts in the kitchen they required no melting or hob work. Perfect for little hands who just love to dump stuff in a bowl and mix.

Ingredients

The original has these in cups, but I’ve converted to grams, cos I’m super nice like that. I’ve also made a few tweaks, including using gluten free flour as usual. Should you prefer standard flour then just omit the Xanthan Gum

  • 130g peanut butter (I used crunchy which I think works amazingly, but smooth would be good too, particularly if these are for small children)
  • 50g softened unsalted butter
  • 220g soft brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 large ripe banana
  • 200g gluten free plain flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon Xanthan Gum
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Granulated sugar for rolling (I used caster, but any kind would be good)

Apologies for the lack of photos of the boy helping me. I promise you he did, but I’d left my phone in the other room and you know how they are once they start something!

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180c or Gas Mark 5.
  2. Mix the peanut butter, butter and sugar together.
  3. Mash the banana. Add to the butter mix along with the vanilla extract and stir well.
  4. Add the dry ingredients and mix until combined into an easy to work dough.
  5. Take walnut size pieces and roll into balls. Roll each ball in the granulated sugar and place on a baking sheet covered in baking parchment.
  6. Press lightly with the prongs of a fork to make the chequered pattern. The cookies will spread, so don’t put too many on a tray or too close together. I used two baking sheets to make 19 cookies.
  7. Bake for around 10-15 minutes or until golden.
  8. Leave to cool on cooling racks before snaffling greedily behind the kitchen door so the children don’t see you.
Press lightly with the back of a fork this way and that to get the criss cross pattern.

Press lightly in to the uncooked dough with the back of a fork this way and that to get the criss cross pattern.

I am totally going to have to make these again (not that the waistband on my jeans wants me too – they’re so good). The boy loved mixing the ingredients and the mixture is so tactile. Rather like very soft play dough. And so quick. From ingredient to grateful munching in around 20 minutes. I can see them being really good with added cinnamon and rolled in demerara sugar closer to Christmas.

So next time you have a friends coming over and there’s a gluten free eater among them, whip up a batch of these. Everyone will be grateful you did.

Delicious Gluten Free Peanut Butter and Banana cookies. Great with a coffee!

Delicious Gluten Free Peanut Butter and Banana cookies. Great with a coffee!

Free From Farmhouse

The Boy Makes…Apple & Pear Almond Crumble

OK so this is a teensy bit of a cheat in the ‘The Boy Makes’ series. Oscar did indeed help me make this, but only parts of it (for reasons that will become clear). However, this is my first foray into a completely new, throw it together and see what happens recipe and as such I couldn’t not include it here. Plus once you taste it, you’ll thank me forever more!

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So a crumble you say. Usually the reserve of Autumnal feasts and its true it does have a taste of the colder weather about it, but it came about because I had a load of fruit that was lying bruised in my fruit bowl. Apples and Pears were what I had so Apple and Pear something it had to be. I chose a crumble because although Ben loves a crumble (as do I) what with one thing and a Slimming World I haven’t made one for ages. It’s not exactly a health food now is it, but I can tell you now making nothing else makes me feel as mumly or wifely or as god damn gorgeous in the kitchen!

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Spot the missing ingredient!

Ingredients

  • Three ripe pears
  • Two large ripe eating apples
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 100ml maple syrup
  • 50g cold hard unsalted butter
  • 100g plain flour
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 100g almonds (I used whole ones blitzed in the processor but you could use ready chopped ones)

For the fruit filling

  1. Peel and chop the fruit into quarters. Core and slice each quarter thinly. This is difficult to have a three year old help with so I did this before he joined in
  2. Put the fruit into a mixing bowl and add cinnamon and maple syrup. Stir well
  3. Pour the contents into a suitably homely pie dish
  4. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove and allow to cool

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For the topping

  1. Cube the cold butter and add to the flour
  2. Rub the butter and flour between the pads of your fingers until it resembles breadcrumbs (or as near as damned). Remember as you rub the butter and flour together, to lift it out of the bowl. This adds air and a crispness later. Again this was tricky for the boy to be involved with but he enjoyed watching me!
  3. Stir through the sugar
  4. If you are using whole almonds, blitz them in the food processor until evenly chopped. If using chopped almonds open the packet!
  5. Stir the almonds through the crumb mixture
  6. Tip the crumb mixture over cooled fruit and bake at 200C or Gas Mark 6 for 30 minutes

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Serve as you see fit. I like to serve mine with vanilla ice cream (something about the contrast between hot and cold is just mouth watering), but you could use cream, custard or nothing at all!

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Et voila. The very best crumble I have ever eaten. I’m sorry Mum and I’m sorry to both of my Nanna’s, but it really is that good.

I leave the recipe with you, jealous that you get to try it for the first time and hope you love it as much as I do.

You’re very welcome 😉