Sunday, 13 October 2013

Paleo Jam Drop Biscuits

One of the biggest challenges when doing grain-free baking is to be able to recreate the textures of the biscuits and cookies that I used to love. I've discovered that coconut flour is great for making fluffy cake-like textures, but not so great at making anything crunchy.

So, after making the Lemon Meringue Pie from Danielle Walker's cookbook Against All Grain, I noticed that the pastry crust base made from almond flour was a great colour and texture - that combination of crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside that I so desired. I decided to experiment and see if I couldn't use that basic pastry crust recipe, sweeten it up a bit and make jam drop biscuits.

The result? Mission: success. Read on...

To start, you'll need to get the recipe for Pastry Crust from Danielle Walker's Against All Grain book. (This is my new baking bible and has so many great recipes and basics that you need to know if you're new to paleo cooking, so I highly recommend it!)

To sweeten up the dough, I added 1 teaspoon of honey and 1/3 cup of coconut crystals (if you are happy to use normal sugar, you're welcome to, just adjust for taste). One thing I have discovered through my paleo baking adventures is that the dough needs to taste good raw! Otherwise, it's not going to taste any better once it's cooked. In this case, the dough was subtly sweet and buttery - the jam would provide the rest of the sweetness.

I ended up with a nice ball of dough that actually looked like real buttery cookie dough! See?

After, that I rolled tablespoon sized balls of dough onto a tray lined with baking paper,

Then I created wells in the middle of each ball by gently pressing down a melon baller:

Used a teaspoon to to dispense jam into each well,

Then put the finished product into the oven for 15 minutes, rotating once throughout cooking. 

When they were golden brown, I removed them from the oven and let them cool on the trays for a few minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack: 

Of course, it wasn't long that I could resist the temptation to try one. The Verdict? Crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside, the sweet taste of strawberry jam mingling with nutty-buttery biscuit.

I'll definitely be making these for my next high tea.