Monday, December 29, 2008

I Never Met a Potato My Boyfriend Didn't Like.... Or, (I Love) Latkes and Favorite Potato Kugel

In the past few weeks, I've made latkes and potato kugel. I've made a you-couldn't-tell-it's-gluten-free (and lower fat!) macaroni & cheese. I had an awesome dinner at Luchita's Mexican Restaurant. I've made two batches of everyone's favorite flourless peanut butter and chocolate chip cookies. I've made a mixed berry pie. And I've taken pictures of it all. But for the past few weeks, my poor little blog has lain dormant and my food adventures have gone entirely unrecorded. Why? Four annoying little words: I. Have. A. Hernia. 

Seriously? A 22 year old girl with a hernia? I mean, if I was a champion weightlifter rather than an amature baker that might make some sense. Heck, I suppose I could've gotten a cooking related injury, if I was lifting some 50 lbs sack of (tapioca) flour, then at least there'd be a reason for this madness, but no such luck. Regardless of it's origin,  my mysterious hernia has left me somewhat bed bound, in serious pain, and much too frustrated to write about the joys of naturally gluten free Jewish cuisine or the difficulties of no bake fruit pies. 

But I'm sick of thinking about my hernia and you're not here for my gluten-free griping (I mention it simply for the "sorry I haven't updated in so long!" pity points), so on the good stuff, the food. 

I'd promised gluten-free Hanukkah recipes in time for the holiday and despite the leeway the lunar calendar provides, I missed my deadline. Sure, it's not technically Hanukkah anymore, but maybe you'd looking to extend your holiday to round nine days? Complete with a latke lunch? (Work with me people...)  And if you're questioning whether or not potato pancakes are midday food, I ask you to really question whether there's a time that you wouldn't eat a crispy, crunchy latke. Dig deep, be honest, you know there isn't. 

Despite my lack of timeliness as far as writing goes, I did make latkes on the Hanukkah's first night. 

 "So what....its fried potatoes and onions? What's the difference between the latke things and hash browns?"  my skeptical boyfriend asked. I couldn't quite answer the question. I mean...they're latkes, what more is there to say? Unable to verbally explain the difference between something that comes in an Ore-Ida bag in a local grocer's freezer case and a fried potato cake with 5770+ years of history behind it, I realized I'd just have to show him. Drat, latkes for us both. 

Though I generally use my dad's latke recipe, I googled latkes until I found a tempting looking version over at Most recipes are basically the same potato-onion-egg-matzo meal mix, but this recipe was a departure from my father's in that 1) it subtracted an egg (my dad tends to use 3) and 2) you hand grate one half of the potatoes while pureeing the other half (contrary to convention, I grew up on latkes made solely of pureed potatoes and was pretty confused by the more popular grated potato cousin popular at delis the first time I saw them). 

I, of course, had to sub in all purpose GF flour mix for that traditional, Jewish matzo meal, but I changed nothing else - I mean, this recipe was offered up by New York Jews and was
 touted as mind blowing. Mind blowing. I mean, who knows Jewish food better than New Yorkers? No one, that's who. 

So latkes I made, and latkes we enjoyed - me with traditional low fat sour cream and cinnamon applesauce, him with a goyish topping I promised not to name. And how did the boyfriend like his introduction to Hanukkah food? "It's fried potatoes and onions, what's not to love?!" But upon asking if it tasted like hash browns, he answered a correct "definitely not". Well good, there may be hope for him yet. 

Having a little batter left over, and being too tired stand over the stove flipping and frying, the next night I baked the remaining mixture in a thin casserole pan and introduced my boyfriend to potato kugel. To my surprise, he liked it even better than the latkes, adding that if we kept eating like this, he'd be a Jewish convert in no time. A few days later, we were craving a home cooked meal and still had half a bag of potatoes left. I decided to try out the whole recipe as a kugel and I'm amazed to say that this produces the best potato kugel I've ever had. (Sorry Dad). 

(I Love) Latkes ...or Favorite Potato Kugel 
adapted from

2.5 lbs of potatoes  (4 medium potatoes or about 8 smallish potatoes) 
1 large white onion
2 eggs
1.5 - 2 tablespoons of GF flour mix 
1/2 teaspoon of salt 
1/4 teaspoon of pepper
1/4 teaspoon of paprika (for kugel, though you could use it in the latkes)
vegetable oil for frying latkes (no olive oil please!!)
1/4 cup vegetable oil (for kugel only)
baking spray 

Peel potatoes. Cut half of the potatoes in to 1 inch chunks and boil for 20 minutes, until tender. Meanwhile, grate the remaining potatoes and the onion in to a medium sized bowl. This mixture will be extremely soggy and you'll need to drain it as much as possible. I recommend straining it in a colander while pressing it down with paper towels. You may loose a few shreds of potato, but don't worry about it. If you have one, NYCnosh recommends placing the shredded vegetables in a cheesecloth and wringing it out (I don't think I know anyone who actually has a cheesecloth in their kitchen, but this sounds far easier than my strainer method, so perhaps its not a bad investment). Return the shredded onion/potato to a dry bowl.

Beat the two eggs in a separate bowl and mix them into the shredded vegetables. Stir in the spices as well. 

Drain the cooked potatoes and puree them in a blender or food processor. Sprinkle the mixture with the flour. Finally mix the puree into the shredded vegetables to complete your latke batter / kugel base. 

For The Latkes....
Cover your largest frying pan with vegetable oil,  1/4th to 1/2th inch thick (Oy! The oil! I know!). Grab a handful of your batter and make a palm sized patty about 3/4 of an inch thick. Gently - and carefully! - slide the patty into the oil and repeat until pan is filled. Cook for 5 -7 minutes on each side, flipping with a spatula and a fork, so as to prevent as much break
age as possible. 

When both sides have evenly cooked, place latkes on a plate covered in paper towels to drain the oil from them (patting the tops will also be necessary). Serve with applesauce, sour cream, or other favored topping. 

Latke Notes
* If your latkes are browning too quickly - 2 minutes or so on the first side - your oil is too hot. If your latkes seem like they're taking forever to cook, you'll need to turn up the heat. 
* Since you're using GF flour, the latkes are a little more fragile, so be careful when flipping them and make sure they're fully cooked before turning. 
* I didn't have any on hand, but a 1/4 teaspoon of xanthum gum may aid in firming the latkes up. 

For the kugel...
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8 inch casserole dish with GF baking s
pray / canola oil (again, NOT olive oil). Pour kugel into the dish and bake for 45 minutes. 

At this point, the kugel will start getting crispy around the edges, but will still be quite white on top. Spray the stop of the kugel with the baking spray / canola oil and bake for an additional 20 -30 minutes, or until the top browns (looks crispy). 

Serve squares along side apple sauce, sour cream, or on it own. Enjoy! 

Sunday, December 28, 2008

I La La Love Luchita's

(I know it's been a long while since I updated - I have an excuse! I've been sick! And I wrote it all up plus a long discussion of latkes and kugel only to find all of my pictures of my delicious Jewish potato goodness were on my boyfriend's camera, left in Michigan. So until I can get them, my explanation, and my latkes, will have to wait. Till then, please enjoy this offering...)

Do you remember the first time you went to a restaurant after your diagnosis? 

You scanned the menu, mentally ticking off the items, Can't eat that. Can't eat that.  Can't eat that. And the few menu items that may have been a possibility? Well, you were pretty sure they either had hidden gluten in them or that the restaurant staff would probably screw up and put croutons in your salad or lie to you about thickening their soup with flour. You told the waiter about your food allergy 500 times before ordering, asked to speak to the manager, double checked that the kitchen knew how very serious your gluten intolerance was when the now annoyed waiter placed your iceberg lettuce salad and boiled potato in front of you ...and then didn't eat any of it because you saw a speck of "might be gluten, might be pepper" on your plate. 

While that might be an extreme example, the first few times you eat out, it's like walking into a gluten minefield. 

I guess that's why I was so surprised when I went to Luchita's last week and almost forgot to tell them about my gluten issue. That's right, I've become so comfortable eating there, I practically assumed I was going to be safe. Of course, I double checked with the waitress if my favorite dish - the vegetarian enchiladas, stuffed with potatoes, spinach, and cheese and covered in a green sauce - was still made with gluten free, all corn tortillas (and yes, it was), but its a good feeling to be so secure at a restaurant that I knew I'd be as safe as if I'd ordered that iceberg lettuce standby. 

Luchita's has a pretty sizable menu, with three or four dishes they're happy to provide vegetarian versions of. Of course, if you eat meat, the menu opens up a great deal more to you as it does at most any restaurant. But if you steer clear of typical gluten strong holds - the floury tortillas of quesadillas come to mind - you're pretty sure to be safe with almost any dish you choose. As you should before ordering anything, you should always ask your server just what is in the food - and on that note, I've always food the waiters and waitresses at Luchita's more than happy to double check with the cooks on anything they weren't sure about. 

Luchita's has four locations - three on the Westside and one in Cleveland. Us Eastsiders used to have a Luchita's at Shaker Square, but it closed its doors earlier this year (as did most places at Shaker Square, but that's a whole other topic for another time). While it might be a bit of a hike (or a schlep, depending on just what part of the Eastside your on), it's well worth it. Authentic Mexican food at it's best, that is, the kind that's naturally gluten free. 

Luchita's Mexican on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Thanksgiving Plate & A Call for Hanukkah Recipes!

Look at that plate of food. 

All gluten free. 

All vegetarian. 

All insanely yummy. 

Were smack in the middle of the Holiday season, with Thanksgiving just a few weeks back and Hanukkah and Christmas on our heels. It's times like these I'm pretty darn thankful that my particular holiday has symbolic food that converts easily to gluten free (you can make a good latke with out matzo meal, I promise, but more on that later), but as for the rest of the days, well rarely is there a time when we're more noticeable for our gluten free fare. 

But that plate, it doesn't look gluten free, it just looks delicious. 

And I'm bound and determined to recreate gluten free holiday goodness for my boyfriend's family's Christmas Eve dinner. I'm not sure what my main dish is going to be (and I'm open for suggestions!) but I have a feeling a pecan pie is in everyones' future...

So I offer up this, my thanksgiving plate full of food, as inspiration for holiday meal menus, yours and mine. 

On the plate: 
Apple -Raisin Stuffing (with Whole Food GF breadcrumbs, adapted from Martha Stewart's recipe) 
Whole Foods GF canned cranberry sauce
Twice Baked Potatoes (My dad's holiday staple. He claims the secret is to bake/microwave the potatoes, scoop out the inside and then throw those away. Then you boil the insides of a separate set of potatoes for the mashed filling.) 
Gluten Free Green Bean Casserole (Adapted from Alton Brown's recipe. However, I used Imagines GF cream of mushroom soup and didn't make my own fried onions for the top, using crumbled potato chips instead. Honestly, it was SO good...the next day. This is a dish that needs a few hours to marinate.) 

Garlic Sweet Potatoes 

4 large sweet potatoes
3 -4 cloves of garlic minced / crushed
3 tablespoons Smart Balance vegetable oil butter (or butter)
salt and pepper to taste
2 teaspoons garlic powder

Peel and chop the sweet potatoes and boil until soft (about 10 minutes). In a large bowl, mash the sweet potatoes and add the butter, garlic, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Add more garlic if needed. It really is that easy. 

Oooh, was that a Thanksgiving meal to remember! In fact, I've been so full since then, only recently have I been able to button my pants and sit down to write about it. Well, that's an exaggeration, mostly. 

A final note, as I prep for my Christmas Eve dinner, I can't help but think about Hanukkah. Something tells me I'm not the only one; I've been fielding some emails about gluten free latke goodness and I couldn't be happier for it. 

Since Hanukkah is so close to Christmas, I'll be celebrating it at my boyfriend's too. Since it's his first Hanukkah, I've got to make a meal to remember so I'm pooling my knowledge and asking all of you. So gluten free bloggers and readers, have you got any great Hanukkah recipes? Any favorite nontraditional latkes? Other Hanukkah treats you can't get enough of? A preferred applesauce? 

I'll be posting a Hanukkah recipe roundup come December 23rd (the second actual day of Hanukkah, giving you all enough time to cook and capture your treats). So get cracking, get experimenting, and get eating! :) 

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Gluten Free PSA #7: Winter / Spring Celiac Events, the GCCA Cookie Exchange...and Chewy Cherry Chocolate Bark

Last weekend, I went to the Greater Cleveland Celiac Association's (GCCA) meeting and cookie exchange. 

Actually, let me amend that. Last weekend, I attempted homemade butterscotch for cashew cookies in a kitchen that was not my own - and thus, not gluten free friendly - discovered homemade butterscotch is not as easy as it looks, threw away aforementioned terrible cookies (they were at once crumbly and paper thin, as only failed a gluten free can be).  I crossed my fingers and whipped up an on-the-fly batch of surprisingly delicious Chewy Cherry Chocolate Bark, THEN drove 3 hours from Ann Arbor, Michigan to Parma, Ohio to go to the Greater Cleveland Celiac Association's meeting and cookie exchange. 

The things I do for a little gluten-free education. 
(Okay, the cookies might've had something to do with it, too.)

Gluten-free baked goods aside (and who ever thought a celiac would say that), the GCCA's meeting was pretty cool. Having no friends or close family with the disease, I still find it amazing to be in a room filled with people who can differentiate between potato flour and potato starch and know the invaluable, mythical power of xanthum gum. 

The meeting was well attended, from those just diagnosed to those who've lived gluten free for nearly two decades. Equally cool was the attendance of non-celiac spouses and parents, not only supportive of their celiac loved ones, but also wanting some gluten-free baked goods! 

The meeting covered everything from favorite baking tips and books, to restaurants that were particularly accommodating to special food requests,  to reminding everyone that Kraft (and anything under the Kraft family umbrella) has agreed to disclose any gluten containing ingredient. This means if no offending mention of wheat, rye, barley, oats, etc is mentioned, the product is gluten free. This includes modified food starch (which, if derived of wheat would be listed as modified food starch (wheat) or the like). 

If you're bummed about missing out on the food and the fun, worry not! The GCCA has its meeting for the next six months planned out already - these people are more organized with gluten-free meetings than I've ever been with my life! With so much notice, how can you not pencil one in? If that's not enough gluten free goodness for you, maybe some of these other events will suit your fancy. 

Winter & Spring 2008/2009's Gluten-Free Events 

***Sunday, December 14th - yet another gluten free cookie exchange. This one is in Akron, Ohio at the Akron Children's Hospital from 2-4pm and it is hosted by the Akron Celiac Support Group.  I have to admit, I'm a bit cookie-ed out, folks, and Akron is a trek from my side of town, but you can find more information on it at the NEOceliac's page

January 11th: GCCA meeting in Solon. This meeting's theme is bread, so come with a loaf of your favorite (home baked) gluten free bread, sweet bread, or cornbread. 

January 15: The Loretta Paganini School of Cooking begins its series of 3 gluten free workshops with a gluten free dinner at Sapore Restaurant. Please click here for details on all classes. 

February 8th: GCCA meeting in Solon. This meeting's theme will be soup. 

February TBA: The NEOCSG will be having a cupcake decorating party, date TBA 

March 4th & 11th: The Loretta Paganini School of Cooking offers classes on gluten free cookies! 

March 15th: GCCA meets in Parma

April 13th: The Loretta Paganini School of Cooking hosts a class in gluten free pasta! 

April 26th: the GCCA meets in Solon

Both the May 17th and the June 14th GCCA meetings will be in Parma. 

Chewy Cherry Chocolate Bark
...and on to the good stuff. 

Sometimes, kitchen experiments end in disaster. Sometimes, simple food is simply boring. And sometimes, a little experimenting with long favored ingredients pays off. I'll let my recipe and pictures speak for themselves. 

2 packages semi-sweet Baker’s chocolate
1 1/3 cup dried cherries
1 cup salted cashew pieces
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 - 2 teaspoon(s) cinnamon (as desired)

Cover a large cookie sheet with wax paper.

Place chocolate squares in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds, remove, and stir. Microwave for an additional 45 seconds before taking out at stirring again. Microwave in additional spurts of 10 seconds, if needed.

Mix cherries, cashews, vanilla, and cinnamon into the melted chocolate. Spread the mixture over the wax paper. Refrigerate at least an hour – until the chocolate becomes hard. Break into pieces and store in the refrigerator.

*Note: For prettier bark, once it's spread out on the wax paper, sprinkle the top of the still hot chocolate mixture with extra dried cherries and cashews (or reserve 1/4 cup of each to sprinkle on top). Press the top layer in slightly to help it set. 

Friday, December 5, 2008

Dessert Always Comes Before Dinner - GCCA Cookie Exchange & Pumpkin Merinuge Pie

You know that saying March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb? 

December, with it's powdery white snow and powdery white sugar needs a saying of it's own. So far, December has come in like a sugar rush... and, well,  at this rate it's going to go out like a like a sugar rush, too. 

Am I not making any sense? Maybe that's because I had just barely recovered from my sugar coma of last week's NEOCSG Holiday Cookie Exchange when I got the email for the Greater Cleveland Celiac Association's (GCCA) December meeting and Holiday Cookie Exchange. It's this Sunday, December 7th, at 2 pm at the Parma Community Hospital. 

Here's the info, straight from the email: 

How does the Cookie Exchange work you ask?

1. Bring a minimum of 2-4 dozen gluten free cookies that you have baked or candies that you have created. Bring as many cookies you choose (… the more you bring the more you take home!)

2. Place your cookies in Ziploc or Glad sandwich bags-2-6 cookies/candies per bag (depending on size)

3. Bring about 2-3 dozen copies of the recipe **Please put your name on the recipe in case people have questions**

4. An extra container will be needed to place your new cookie collection in.

5. The number of people participating determines how many of each cookie you can take home with you.

6. Take cookies home to share, to eat, or to freeze for later enjoyment!

E-Mail Cindy with any questions: and to RSVP - and especially if you plan on participating! 

Now, I'm not one to play favorites when it comes to cookies, or events,  so I plan on being there, Tupperware of new gluten free cookies in hand. Looks like it's back to the cookie drawing board...

But there's still more on plate, as it were (har, har). It's been a whole week and I still haven't done a wrap up of my Thanksgiving. I don't know about you, but frankly, I'm a little Thanksgiving fooded out. So I'm getting to it in steps - and what's better first step than the last one? 

Pumpkin Meringue Pie 

recipe mildly adapted from the can of sweetened condensed milk - which amusingly enough, is the same recipe that appears on the can of Libby's Canned Pumpkin, only replacing evaporated milk and sugar with sweetened condense milk. seems while there might not be no one way to make a pumpkin pie, there certainly is a right way...

the meringue recipe comes from Food and Wine Magazine's Pumpkin Meringue Pie

1 can pumpkin (not pumpkin pie)
1 can fat free sweetened condensed milk
1/2 teaspoon of salt
2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice
2 large eggs
1 - 2 tablespoons of amaretto liquor (which apparently finds its way into all of my pies) 

1 GF pie crust
I used a premade Whole Foods' one to cut down on my cooking time I've also had great success with Gluten Free Pantry when I made my apple pie

4 large egg whites 
(or the equivalent of 4 liquid egg whites)
1 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of water 

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. 

Combine pumpkin, sweetened condensed milk, eggs, amaretto, salt, and spices in a bowl.  Pour into pie crust. Bake pie at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Turn temperature down to 350 degrees and bake for an additional 45 - 50 minutes, or until a knife poked into the center of the pie comes out clean. Take pie out of the oven and let it cool for at least 2 hours, if not overnight. 

For the meringue...

(Note: this makes a lot of meringue. According to the recipe, this is enough for two pies. We like meringue in my family and this was perfect for our one pie. I say, make it all and whatever you don't use you can bake into little meringue cookies by dolloping the extras on a piece of parchment paper and broiling for 30 seconds.) 

Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring just until the sugar dissolves. Let boil for 10 minutes (about the time it takes for a candy temperature to reach 220 degrees, if you have one). 

Meanwhile, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer at medium speed, until firm (about 5 -6 minutes). While still beating the whites, slowly stream in the water/sugar combination. Increase the speed to high and beat until the whites become stiff and glossy, and little peaks form. It will be somewhat cool at this point. 

Preheat the boiler and position an oven rack eight inches from the heat. 

Gently spoon the meringue around the edge of the pie and use a spatula to spread it across and over the top. Broil the pie for about 30 seconds, keeping an eye on it so as not to burn it and turning it as necessary for even browning. 

Enjoy your beautifully impressive, yet deceptively easy dessert! 

Monday, December 1, 2008

Cherry Peppermint Cookies & The Holiday Cookie Exchange

Holy Holiday Cookies, Batman! 

Despite my Thanksgiving cooking exhaustion, I promised myself I would make cookies for and attend the NEOCSG Holiday Cookie Exchange. Maybe holiday cookies are a no brainer for some of you, but let me let you in on a little secret, us Jewish people don't really know from Christmas cookies. While we may enjoy an occasional sparkly red and green sugared treat, a iced gingerbread man, or a peppermint striped cane, they're not our forte. Ask me for a latke and I've got you covered, but a seasonal cookie? Well. That took a lot of reading and a little invention. 

I spent most of Saturday researching, shopping for, and baking my holiday treat. I flipped through my Bon Appetite, I combed the Internet, looking for a good representation of a Christmas cookie, and I even learned the history of the maraschino cherry in a quest to discover it if those sugary holiday staples were gluten free. (Did you know that a new process for preserving maraschino cherries came about during prohibition? As cherry liquor was outlawed, like alcohols of the time, new preservatives had to be devised to continue the production of these sweet treats.) 

I eventually settled upon a variation of cherry tassies - making small adaptations to the recipe in December's Better Homes and Gardens. Tassies are meant to be baked in mini muffin tins and are generally made with cream cheese, but why bake a conventional cookie when you can experiment, right?  

In any event, I arrived at the Independence Public Library, Tupperware of cherry-peppermint cookies in hand, and was totally and completely amazed at the ten-foot long table covered in gluten free baked goods. Chocolate chip cookies, peanut butter cookies, meringues, cupcakes, and even a version of my Cream Cheese Thumbprints! (Which, by the way, were given an updated spin by a lovely lady named Michelle who gave them a new, delicious update and seasonal color by using raspberry - or strawberry? - jam. Yum!) 

Cookies aside, I gleaned tons of valuable information from the meeting. From a through report on November's Celiac Conference at the Columbus Children's Hospital (did you know, for example, that an injection and pill are in the works for us celiacs in case of accidental gluten ingestion?), to an awesome resource list for online ordering (Joan's GF bagels rank among my next I-must-try-this gluten free foods), the ladies of the NEOCSG really know how to pack a lot of information into one hour meeting. 

Among the most interesting of information passed along though was the formation of a Northeast Ohio Gluten Free Co-Op. That is, buying gluten free foods at whole sale in bulk style. And we're not just talking crackers and flours here, the catalogue passed out to us included Gluten Free Ravioli and the like. You will absolutely see more information on how to join the Co-Op soon, but if you want direct information immediately, please email me at dana (dot) wax (at) gmail (dot) com, and I will do my best to connect you up with Serena, the Co-Op Lady. 

Alright now, I know you're thinking what I was thinking by the end of the meeting, let's get to the cookies, already! A word about my Cherry-Peppermint creations though, I was trying to keep them lactose and nut free in case of any other food allergies at the Exchange. However, I think a tablespoon or two of Cream Cheese might make these guys stick together a little better. Additionally, substituting a third of the flour with almond meal or ground hazelnuts could be a delicious variation. So experiment and enjoy - welcome to the beginning of the Holiday Food Season!

Cherry-Peppermint Holiday Cookies
lactose and nut free, minor adaptations Cherry Tassies in December's Better Homes & Gardens

1 ¼ cup Earth Balance (or butter), softened
2 ¼ cup Powered Sugar
1 tsp. Baking Powder 
½ tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Peppermint Extract 
1 tsp. Vanilla 
1 Egg
2 ½ cups GF Flour Mix (I use whole foods brand so it has xanthum gum in it. If you're using your own mix, be sure to add 1/2 teaspoon of xanthum gum so your cookies don't fall apart!) 
4 GF Candy Canes crushed (I used Pure Fun Organic Candy Canes)
Approximately 48 GF Maraschino Cherries (I used Silver Palate - no artificial flavors or dyes, in addition to being gluten free!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer for 30 seconds. Gradually beat in 1 ½ cups of the powdered sugar, the baking powder, and the salt. Then beat in the peppermint, vanilla, and the egg. Add as much of the flour as you can using the electric mixer, and add remaining flour, stirring by hand. Gently mix in the crushed candy canes.

Place the rest of the powdered sugar in bowl (about ¾ cups, though you won’t need that much and can use less to start with). Form dough into 1-inch balls and roll through the powdered sugar. Place the ball on a greased non-stick cookie sheet and place cherry in the center. Repeat, repeat, repeat.

Bake for 17-20 minutes or until cookies are golden brown. Let cool at least 5 minutes on the tray before removing them. Makes between 42 and 48 cookies, depending on size.  
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