Introduction: Gluten Free Cocoa Cardamom Spice Cookies

This recipe is an amalgam of two of my favorite cookie recipes with a gluten-free twist.  It calls for a few exotic spices that may be purchased at the Asian Market very inexpensively. The aroma of these cookies is absolutely intoxicating and the flavor is fabulous.  Best of all, you can prepare and shape the dough ahead of time, pop them into a freezer safe bowl, and bake as many or as few as you desire at any time!


Step 1: Ingredients:

Ingredients:
17 oz  package of Gluten-Free Brownie Mix
8 oz block of cream cheese (room temperature)
4 oz stick of butter (room temperature)
1 egg (room temperature)
1 teaspoon Almond Extract
1 1/2 Tablespoons Spice Blend*
1/2 cup Powdered Sugar

*Spice Blend Ingredients:
2 teaspoons Cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Allspice
1/4 teaspoon Cloves
3 green Cardamom Pods
1/8 teaspoon Black Pepper
(Note: It is strongly recommended that you use whole spices that you grind right before use for this recipe, however; pre-powdered spices can be used)

Step 2: Spice Blend

If using whole spices- use a coffee or spice grinder to powder them down for this recipe.  If using pre-ground ingredients, simply mix them and set them to the side until needed.

Step 3: Start the Base

In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and cream cheese together until light and fluffy. Add the egg and Almond Extract.  Mix on high until the mixture becomes fluffy and has a uniform color.  Scrape down the sides as necessary.

Step 4: Add the Brownie Mix

Add the Brownie Mix to the bowl and SLOWLY start mixing it in on the LOWEST SPEED SETTING. (Or you will end up with Brownie Mix everywhere).  As the mix is incorporated, increase the speed and mix on high for three additional minutes or until the mixture becomes dark and glossy in appearance. Finally add the spice mixture and beat for an additional minute.

Step 5: Transfer to a Freezer Safe Bowl

Transfer the mixture to a freezer safe bowl and freeze for 20-30 minutes.  The dough should be hard to the touch when it is ready. 

Step 6: Preheat Oven and Shape the Cookies

Preheat oven to 350.  

Remove the dough from the freezer and scoop out spoonfuls of dough into your hands and form into a ball.
Roll the ball in Confectioners or Powdered Sugar to coat.  (I find it easier to put the powdered sugar in a measuring cup and swirl the dough around the cup to coat it.)

Please note that the dough will become more sticky the longer it is out of freezer.  If it becomes too sticky to handle comfortably, simply pop it back into the freezer for a few minutes.

At this point you can either:
Place jon an ungreased cookie sheet and bake until the cookie is firmly set in the center.  Remove them from the oven and allow them to sit for five minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.

OR you may place the coated cookie dough in a freezer safe container with a lid and store until you are ready to bake them using the above instructions.

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