Ginger-Molasses Cookies, Gluten Free

From: Art of Gluten-Free Baking
(artofglutenfreebaking.com)
 
Ginger-Molasses Cookies, Gluten-Free
(Reprinted with permission from 125 Gluten-Free Vegetarian Recipes by Carol Fenster (Avery, 2011))
Moist and very flavorful, these cookies are perfect for snacks, cookie exchanges, or dessert for your family. Or, process them into crumbs in a food processor for a pie crust (about 1 ½ cups for a 9-inch piecrust) that is perfect for a pumpkin cheesecake. Adding the optional black pepper turns them into Pfeffernüsse, a traditional German treat served during the holidays.

½ cup butter or buttery spread, such as soy-free Earth Balance
¼ cup molasses (not blackstrap)
¾ cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla
1 cup sorghum flour
½ cup garbanzo (chickpea) flour
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon xanthan gum
½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (optional)
2 tablespoons evaporated cane juice or sanding sugar (or regular sugar), for rolling

[1] Place a rack in the lower third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a 9×13-inch metal baking sheet (not nonstick because they are more likely to burn) with parchment paper.

[2] In a medium mixing bowl, beat the butter, molasses, brown sugar, and vanilla with an electric mixer on low speed until well blended. Add the sorghum flour, garbanzo flour, ginger, cinnamon, xanthan gum, nutmeg, cloves, baking soda, salt, and black pepper (if using) and beat until well blended.

[3] With a #50 (1¼ tablespoon-size) metal ice cream scoop, shape 18 balls, roll each into a smooth ball with your hands, and then roll in the evaporated cane juice for a pretty crinkly appearance. Place 9 of the balls at least two inches apart on the sheet.

[4] Bake until the cookies look firm and began to show little cracks on top, about 8 to 10 minutes. Do not overbake. Cool the cookies on the baking sheet on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then transfer to the wire rack to cool completely. Bake the remaining 9 cookies in the same way. Makes 18 cookies.