If you haven’t yet heard, Wednesdays are our Guest Blogger Series day! It’s a day where Matt and I get a bit of a mid-week break while getting to share with you some of our favorite online bloggers. And for their hard work, they get the benefit of your readership – we encourage you to please show all of them your support by visiting their blog and social media links at the end of this post!
This week we have another recipe for an autoimmune friendly baked good. The creator is the fabulous Against All Grain who took on the challenge of not only an autoimmune protocol friendly cookie, but also an idea for breakfast. We have tried these and can confirm that they are as good as advertised.
A few weeks ago – Stacy mentioned on Twitter that she was missing baked goods while on the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol and asked Jenni (The Urban Poser) and I if we had come up with anything. I had just recently started the protocol and figured I would do without baked goods for a month while I gave it a trial run. But after that conversation, I made it a personal mission to find something we could all still enjoy.
My biggest obstacle on the AIP was breakfast. I don’t know about you, but vegetables, broth, and meat just didn’t fulfill me in the morning. I resorted to eating fruit and bacon most of the time, but that got old really quickly – especially because we try to limit our intake of pork. So I decided to try to recreate my ever-popular breakfast cookie and make it compliant with the protocol.
This cookie became the perfect breakfast – especially when I was in a hurry. There’s no eggs, nuts, seeds, or added sweeteners. It is 100% allergy friendly! The only downside to it is there are no raw eggs, so you can lick the bowl and spoon clean without a tinge of guilt or fear of salmonella! Well, maybe a little guilt when you barely have any dough left to make into cookies. But I didn’t do that of course. They’re 100% fruit sweetened as well, so add one more justification to eating an entire batch within 24 hours.
If the dried fruits I chose don’t sound appealing, feel free to add in some Enjoy Life chocolate chips, cranberries, cherries or mangos. All would taste incredible, but I have to say I am definitely partial to the dried apricots.
A note about AI Protocol Baking:
I’ve tried grain-free baking without eggs many times, and I know Stacy agrees with me when I say it is a very tough task. The top egg replacers are usually flax, chia, tofu, yogurt, commercial egg replacers containing starches, or fruit purées such as apple, banana and pumpkin. With the AI protocol forbidding all but the last option in that list, you may as well be asking me to perform a miracle!
Before replacing eggs in a recipe, you need to understand their function. In baked goods, eggs tend to be used as a binder, strengthener, emulsifier, and leavening agent. They provide steam for leavening, fat for creaminess, and protein for binding. They are made up of water, protein, fat, and emulsifying lechtins, so when replacing them in a recipe you need to find something that will be able to take on all of those properties.
I find that fruit purees are an ideal egg substitute when paired with baking soda and an acidic ingredient like lemon juice. A light and airy baked good is achieved by creating gas bubbles in the dough or batter. They are activated by a chemical reaction between baking soda and an acidic ingredient, usually eggs in most baked goods. When you omit eggs, you need to create this reaction by using another acidic ingredient such as lemon juice or vinegar. Just be careful not to overdo it because if you create too many air bubbles, the weight of the dough will end up popping the bubbles – resulting in a sunken baked good.
Fruit has natural pectin, which mimics the fat the egg yolks lend to baking and helps to stabilize the air bubbles in the batter or dough that the baking soda creates.
I am in no-way a vegan baking expert, so replacing eggs has been a trail and error process for me. I wish I could give you a foolproof egg substitute guide but it really varies depending on what you are making and what use the eggs were intended to have. My suggestion is to experiment and don’t be defeated by failure!
Ingredients (yields 1 dozen)
½ pound ripe bananas (about 1 cup mashed)
½ cup unsweetened applesauce
2 tablespoons palm shortening
2 oz pitted dates (about 3 or 4)
1/3 cup coconut flour
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1½ tsp lemon juice
½ cup finely shredded dried coconut
2 tablespoons dried apricots, chopped
2 tablespoons dried currants
2 tablespoons raisins
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In a food processor, puree the bananas, dates, applesauce, and shortening until it has the consistency of baby food, about 30 seconds.
3. Add the coconut flour, cinnamon, vanilla, baking soda, lemon juice and pulse 5 or 6 times until combined.
4. Add the dried fruit and shredded coconut and pulse twice. Don’t run it long enough to puree the dried fruit, just enough to incorporate it.
5. Spoon golf-ball sized balls of dough onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment or a Silpat.
6. Flatten the balls a bit with your palm. These cookies don’t spread, so make them the shape and size you want prior to baking.
7. Bake for 18-20 minutes.
8. Let the cookies cool completely, then store in an airtight container in the fridge.
*You can also press the dough into a greased pyrex dish and bake as bars for about 17 minutes.
* For those weighing your coconut flour, use 47g.
Danielle Walker is the author and creator of the grain-free recipe blog, Against All Grain (againstallgrain.com). She has amassed over 150 grain-free recipes that are also free of refined sugar and lactose. She is first and foremost a devoted wife and loving mom to her wonderful husband and rambunctious toddler, but finds joy in her spare time developing tasty recipes for those on restricted diets. Using grain-free flours such as coconut and almond flour, she creates familiar comfort foods that leave people with food allergies feeling satisfied rather than deprived. Her passion is to share with everyone that eating a diet of real, healthy foods does not mean living in a world of bland and uneventful food.
All of the recipes on Against All Grain are grain-free, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, and low to minimal dairy.