My friend Amy hosts a scrapbook get-together almost every Friday night in her home. The women that gather always bring snacks- sweet and salty- because what else does one crave when they are busy creating, laughing, and sometimes watching a movie? Sadly, a few months ago, Amy was told that she would no longer to be able to eat any food that contained gluten- the positive note is that since she was given this diagnosis( you can read more about it here on her blog- Life Minus Gluten),and removed gluten from her diet, she is feeling a lot better physically. But it has been a rough road giving up the foods she loved (I can only imagine) and trying to find a tasty substitute. Amy has made some amazingly delicious cookies (which I constantly have to remind myself are only gluten- free not CALORIE FREE) that she has shared with our group. But we have all had some difficulties coming up with items that are gluten-free to share, and there is not a local gluten-free bakery, so when my September issue of Everyday Food arrived in the mail and I saw the recipe for these cookies and knew I'd have to try them out.
Years ago up in NW Portland there was a small delicatessen-specialty food shop called Ron-Paul. At Ron-Paul's there was a huge deli case filled with a variety of items such as 3 kinds of quiche, salads, roast chicken or rabbit, and all kinds of vegetable-or meat stuffed pastries that they would warm up individually. The food was amazing but one of the best reasons to go to Ron-Paul was the dessert display case and my family almost always came home with a small bag of these dark-chocolate cookies that they called Whompers. Sadly, Ron-Paul has been gone for a long time, and although I'm sure they created their cookies with flour I think this recipe may be the closest I have ever had, and I am here to tell you they lose absolutely nothing in flavor, richness, or chewiness when compared to my old family favorite.
One of the things I love most about these cookies is because they only have 6 ingredients not only are they easy to mix (only one bowl to mess up) but the flavor of each individual ingredient really stands out. The original recipe calls for pecans, and the first time I made them I used half pecans and half walnuts- because of the rich chocolate flavor I found that the walnuts were strong enough to hold their own while the pecans were lost and there only for their crunch.
Flourless Double Chocolate-Walnut Cookies (aka Whompers)- recipe courtesy of Everyday Food
3 cups powdered sugar
3/4 Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/2 tsp. course salt
5 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts
4 large egg whites, room temperature
1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, cocoa, and salt.
3. Stir in chopped chocolate and walnuts.
4. Add egg whites and stir until just incorporated (do not over-mix).
5. Drop dough by 1/4 cupfuls, 3 inches apart, onto 2 parchment -lined baking sheets.
6. Bake both sheets of cookies in the oven together until cookie tops are dry and crackled, about 25 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through.
7. Transfer sheets to wire racks and let cookies cool completely.
If you are keeping these cookies for longer than a day (you know, if you have more discipline than me) they keep best in a glass container, and not for more than 3 days- my friend Amy said they tend to dry out a little.
I froze a few from the last batch I made and found that the cookie became incredibly chewy and was a great treat paired with an ice cold glass of milk!
I hope you try these really simple, simply scrumptious cookies out this weekend!