There are a few things I can count on in this life.
My little white dog will need to pee 4 times each morning (minimum), I will be a wee bit sad to see my children get on the bus (they always look their most adorable as they are walking away from me) and then immediately grateful for the solitude, and I will have a gluten-free cookie as soon as I have the house to myself. If there’s a thin & chewy sort of cookie hanging about, I’ll have that one please.
The cupboards around here are rarely if ever bare, as you might imagine. But every once in a long while, I find us getting suddenly and mysteriously low on cookies. Soon after that, you can usually count on a few new recipes here on the blog. Even though they are some more work than bars, I’m terribly partial to cookies.
One of my favorite packaged cookies, reaching back, were always Archway iced oatmeal cookies. Soft and chewy, with a thin layer of white icing on top. Ring a bell?
This version calls for chewy rolled old-fashioned gluten-free oats, and the Archway kind had a finer grain, but I think you’re going to love this one.
The secret to making them really thin but still chewy is to press them down flat when raw. Otherwise, they have to bake much longer than the 7 minutes directed to become thin enough. And by then, they’re too crispy.
The icing couldn’t be simpler – it’s little more than confectioners’ sugar and water, with a bit of lemon juice to cut the cloying sweetness of all that sugar. It’s not a true royal icing, since it is made without egg whites or meringue powder, but it is that much easier, and with the right icing consistency, it hardens reliably into a nice, matte layer. Cheers to no special ingredients!
The best method for a smooth icing is to create a thick paste with a minimum of moisture before thinning the paste into a pourable icing with more water. You’ll see. I explain it all below.
8 tablespoons (112g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
8 tablespoons (96g) vegetable shortening, melted and cooled
3 extra-large eggs at room temperature, beaten
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
12 ounces mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 cups (230g) confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
2-3 tablespoons tepid water (plus more by the teaspoon if necessary)
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Line rimmed baking sheets with unbleached parchment paper and set them aside.
In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, granulated sugar and brown sugar, and whisk to combine well, working out any lumps in the brown sugar. Add the rolled oats, and mix to combine well. Add the butter, shortening, eggs, and vanilla, and mix to combine. In a separate small bowl, toss the chips in the cornstarch to coat, and then add them to the cookie dough. Mix until the chips are evenly distributed throughout the dough.
Drop the dough by rounded tablespoonful, about 1 1/2 inches apart, on the prepared baking sheets. With wet hands, roll each piece of dough into a ball and then flatten with the heel of your hand.
Place the cookies in the center of the preheated oven and bake for 7 minutes, or until lightly brown around the edges and set in the center. Allow to cool completely until firm on the baking sheets. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
While the cookies are cooling, make the glaze. In a medium-sized bowl, place the confectioners’ sugar. Add the lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of water, and mix until smooth. It will form a very thick paste. Add another tablespoon of water, and mix until smooth and well-combined. The icing should be opaque but pourable. It should pour somewhat slowly (see photo).
Once the cookies are cool, hold one with the tips of your fingers around the edges. Dip the top of the cookie into the icing, without immersing the cookie. Allow the extra icing to drip off. Place, icing side up, on a sheet of parchment paper. Continue with the rest of the cookies. Allow to set and harden at room temperature. For best results, store iced cookies in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
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