Thursday, June 5, 2008

Gluten-Free Graham Crackers and a Vanilla Bean

Let's start with the vanilla bean, shall we?  Because Magoo is sensitive to yeast and all that goes with it - I can't use vanilla extract in recipes.  (Due to its alcohol content.)  But one day at Whole Foods I saw this.  One single vanilla bean in a jar.  For some reason - I thought this was the strangest and awesomest thing ever! 
So I bought it thinking, "I bet I can do something with it someday."

My friend Sara said that she uses them sometimes when making creme brule'.  She opens them up and scrapes out the seeds.  She suggested that I boil it up in water and kind of create my own vanilla extract.  So that's exactly what I did.

I scraped out the seeds, but I also just popped the whole shell in there to simmer a bit.  Then I drained it and poured it right back into the jar.  It's MUCH MUCH milder than the real stuff, but a little smack of flavor is better than none, right?

So here's what I used it for, graham crackers!  Living Without has a recipe for Gluten-Free Graham Crackers that I'd been wanting to try, but there's brown sugar and I wasn't sure what to substitute for brown sugar.  (Magoo can't have sugar either.)  Then I discovered Muscovado.  I looked it up and it seems like something Magoo might be able to handle.  And honestly, when it comes to things like this, sometimes you just have to give him a small amount and see what happens.  (It's not like his throat is going to close up or anything.  I just watch for excessive loopiness or twitching - things like that.)

So now I had a homemade vanilla liquid and muscovado and I was ready to go.  Here's the dough all rolled up.  I used more liquid then the recipe called for, so when they suggested I add more water to the dry dough, I just used my vanilla elixir.

Then I rolled them out, cut them up and poked lots and lots of holes in them.  Here's a peek in the oven.  Not too shabby!

I have to say they came out quite tasty!  Next time I think I'll roll them just a little thinner and use two cookie sheets - but otherwise it wasn't that difficult and super yummy. 


ang said...

Those look great! I am thinking of trying them also. It's good to have you and Cam blaze the trail first. It's good to have this recipe because the GF crackers in the store are super expensive. I am thinking of using mini-cookie cutters to make animal shape graham crackers for Doran.
Thanks for posting this!

Julie_c said...

Cookie cutters is a great idea!

Shelley said...

You are quite the kitchen goddess! Hope it works for Magoo. I'm pretty sure I'd try them... yum!

äiti said...

These look great---I'm giving them a go for our camping trip in July. What's a campfire without s'mores?

I'm glad cooking up the vanilla bean worked for you. Have you seen vanilla powder at WF? That might be an alternative to consider, too.