Are you missing Girl Scout Cookies now that you’re gluten-free? Add this gluten-free copycat Tagalongs recipe to your repertoire, and quit your bellyachin’ (said with l-o-v-e)!
As familiar and comforting (and tasty!) as they are, Girl Scout Cookies are also kinda confusing. Why are there two bakeries that make Girl Scout Cookies? And, perhaps more importantly, why do the Scouts let the two bakeries choose their own names for those cookies? I’m not going to ask why they don’t make gluten-free varieties. C’mon now. They can’t please everyone. Sometimes it seems like everyone feels entitled to everything. *meh*
Call them “Tagalongs” or call them “Peanut Butter Patties” (I think we all know who won the name game in that one), they’re not gluten-free until you make them gluten-free. I’m lookin’ at YOU, sister! They’re certainly not gonna make themselves (wait – that would be so cool, though).
The filling is from my gluten-free Nutter Butter Cookie recipe (haven’t seen that one yet? click it!). The cookies are nearly the same snappy little numbers we used in the gluten-free Samoas Girl Scout Cookies recipe (I just added some vanilla since Tagalongs are snappy little vanilla things). But seriously – these are easier to put together than the Samoas (a.k.a. Caramel Delights). You don’t even need to cut out that hole in the center. Although if you did, it might be pretty cool.
I piped on the filling because, clearly, I’m terribly fancy. That, and, uh, I have to take pictures of what I do. You don’t need to do that! Just spoon it on, if that’s how you roll.
Semi-Pro Tip: You know how, when you dip things in chocolate, they get that “foot” on them after they set? I hate that. Just drag the cookie along the side of the bowl with your fork as you remove it. No more foot.
Oh but these are really, really good. And before you ask … YES! You can definitely sub in any old nut butter for the peanut butter. But then you most definitely must call them Tagalongs, ’cause Peanut Butter Patties would just be downright ridiculous without the peanut butter. They’ll still be snappy and nut-buttery and chocolatey little ditties. No Scout uniform required.
Preheat your oven to 325°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper and set it aside.
Make the Cookies. In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, salt and sugar, and whisk to combine well. Add the butter, vanilla, and 1 tablespoon water, and mix to combine. The dough will be a bit dry, and you will have to knead it with your hands to get it to come together. If necessary for the dough to hold together, add a second tablespoon of water, 1 teaspoon at a time. Press the dough into a disk, and then place the disk between two sheets of unbleached parchment paper and roll the dough between 1/8 inch and 1/4 inch thick. Cut out 2 inch rounds with a cookie cutter. Gather, reroll and cut any scraps into rounds. Transfer the cookies carefully to the prepared baking sheet by peeling back the parchment paper from the bottoms of the cookies (they will be a bit fragile). Place the cookies in the center of the preheated oven and bake until the cookies are set and just beginning to brown around the edges (about 8 minutes). Allow the cookies to cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet until they are firm enough to transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Make the Peanut Butter Filling Layer. While the cookies are cooling, heat the 4 tablespoons unsalted butter and ¾ cup peanut butter in a small, heavy-bottom saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently, until just melted. Remove the pan from the heat and add the dash of kosher salt and stir to combine. Add the confectioners’ sugar, and stir until well-combined. The mixture will be very thick. Add one tablespoon of cream, and stir to thin the filling. Add another tablespoon of cream if necessary to create a thickly pourable filling. Allow the filling to cool until no longer hot to the touch.
Assemble the Cookies. Place the cooled cookies on the prepared baking sheet in a single layer. Place the filling in a pastry bag fitted with a medium-sized plain tip (I used a #12 tip). Pipe a generous amount of filling on top of each cooled cookie, leaving at least a 1/2 inch border around the perimeter of the cookie. With wet fingers, press down the filling. Place the cookies in the freezer until the filling is well-chilled (about 5 minutes).
Melt the Chocolate & Complete the Cookies. Melt the chocolate and shortening in a double boiler or a small, microwave safe bowl, on 70% power at 30-second intervals, stirring in between, just until melted and smooth. Remove the chilled cookies from the freezer, and carefully immerse each cookie in the melted chocolate. With a dipping fork (or any fork, really), carefully turn the cookie over in the chocolate until it is completely coated. Turn the cookie right side up in the chocolate and draw the cookie out of the chocolate on the tines of the fork, scraping the bottom of the fork on the side of the bowl to rid the bottom of excess chocolate. Place the cookie back on the parchment paper. Allow to sit at room temperature until the chocolate is set. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Freeze any leftovers.