‘Healthier’ Gluten-Free Gingerbread

‘Healthier’ gluten free gingerbread

‘Terveellisemmät’ gluteenittomat piparkakut

Christmas is soon upon us and I am in full festive baking mode. Gingerbread, to me, is synonymous with Christmas. However I have to admit, I actually don’t use a traditional recipe, rather a kind of Finnish/ English mash up. I love how super spicy and dark with molasses English gingerbread is, but also crave the use of different species in Finnish gingerbread. The term healthier here is relative. This gingerbread is still a treat. I have used nutritiously rich organic oat flour to make the gingerbread gluten-free, coconut sugar as an alternative to processed white sugar and have added dark smoky molasses, which is a great source of iron, selenium and copper. If you are used to Scandinavian gingerbread, my version is more highly spiced and the molasses adds a dark bitterness which I love. In Finland it can be difficult to find molasses (I have found it in Ruohonjuuri, for example). Tumma siirapi can be used as a replacement, however it is a very different product to molasses and has none of the associated nutritional benefits. The gingerbread will be sweeter and lack a certain dark rich flavour molasses adds. However this is in no way saying the gingerbread wouldn’t be delicious if you make the swap!

I have to also say something about the oat flour I used. I was lucky enough to be gifted the most amazing oat flour from Puolen Hehtaarin Metsä. They are a small producer based in Mellilä, (which just happens to be the area my partner was born). They have a range of organic oat and wheat flours, as well as possibly the best porridge oats I have ever tasted. All their products are organic and incredibly fresh, the flour I used here was literally ground and produced a week before I received it! So if you live in Finland and want to help support small Finnish business, please check out their website here.

Gluten-free Gingerbread – makes around 24 pieces, depending on the size of your cutter

220 g Organic Oat Flour, plus extra for dusting (I highly recommend Puolen Hehtaarin Metsä)

80 g almond flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground cloves

70 g coconut sugar

3 tbsp cornstarch

a good pinch of salt

2 tbsp molasses

50 g coconut oil

2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat your oven to 165 degrees c.

In a large bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients.

Melt the coconut oil and in a separate small bowl, mix with the molasses and vanilla extract.

Add the molasses mixture to the dry ingredients and mix well. Keep mixing until it forms a dough. I would recommend getting your hands in. At first it may seem like there is too much flour, but keep mixing and it will come together.

Roll out the dough between two sheets of baking paper. The dough is a lot softer and more delicate than regular wheat flour dough, so this will make the rolling easier.

Cut out your desired shapes and remove the excess surrounding dough. Carefully lift the shapes and place spaced out on a lined baking tray. Repeat until you have used up all the dough.

Bake in the oven at 165 degrees for 8 – 12 minutes, depending on the size of your cut shapes. The gingerbread should be a lovely golden brown colour.

Leave to cool completely before serving/ decorating.


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