By Nancy Smorch
While I absolutely love living in West Michigan, it's difficult to be across the state from the rest of my family, especially my parents, who both live in an assisted living home.
Luckily, my siblings live in their area and are so great at stepping in and taking care of my parents. Being able to see them so often, they understand the ins and outs of their lives, and their specific needs at this age.
One of the ways I try to contribute when I can is with food - it's what I know, after all, and of course food is tied in so closely to health. We all want our parents to be as happy and healthy as possible, and between myself and my siblings, they are well taken care of!
Later this week I'll talk more about the steps I'm starting to take to ensure that they still have access to good, wholesome foods - because eating right is always a crucial part of health, no matter your age! I want to make sure my dad still has access to that, so I spent a good part of yesterday making chocolate chip cookies and mini banana chocolate chip muffins to take to my dad in Flint. He wanted to surprise his friends and the staff of the home where he lives, and how could I say no to that?
He needed 5 dozen cookies, and I ended up just shy of 5 dozen, so I decided to make the last batch of cookies gluten-free so that my family could enjoy them as well.
I have to say they are probably the best gluten-free cookies I have made to date! Even Frankie, our daughter who eats gluten and was my taste tester for the regular cookies, said she like the gluten-free ones better - which is a pretty huge compliment from her!
So, I thought I’d share this recipe, which has been important in my life for a long time.
It’s been with me since I was in junior high school, when I used to make cookies to sell at my mom’s garage sale. It’s was with me when I was in college and I worked the opening shift at a deli and bagel shop, where the owner let me make and sell my cookies. And it has been with me through numerous family gatherings, birthdays, and American Idol-watching nights.
When I had to switch to gluten free, I was worried I wouldn’t be able to make them anymore (at least, not for myself). But, since I discovered Cup4Cup gluten-free flour, I can enjoy their delicious, happy taste again, and I hope you will too!
1 cup organic butter, softened
2 organic eggs
3/4 cup organic sugar
3/4 cup organic brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 to 3 cups of organic flour (or Cup4Cup gluten-free flour)
1 tsp. finely ground sea salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup Ghiardelli bittersweet chocolate chips (or your chocolate chip of choice)
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix together butter, eggs, sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla until smooth.
In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients (flour, salt, and baking soda). Gradually add the mixed dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix well. I have used both a stand mixer and my hands - either works!
Add chocolate chips.
Bake at 350 for 10 to 12 minutes, rotating trays from top to bottom halfway through.
Share and enjoy with a nice glass of organic milk or some coffee or tea :)!