WARNING: the foods we cook for Abby are safe for her, but not necessarily for everyone. Please confirm any ingredients are safe for you before using in your diet. Food Allergies can kill and the best policy is complete avoidance. Read this post for more info.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Coconut Chew Bars:(gluten free, dairy free, soy free, nut free, corn free, )

My Mom was a great cook and when she passed away she gave me her favorite recipes. One that I requested was called Coconut Chew Bars. She did not make them often but over the years I often thought about them and kept meaning to make them. Now years after she passed I finally got around to making a batch. The trick was converting to "Abby safe" ingredients. We are quite pleased with how they turned out. The one major difference(to my memory)was the glaze. The original called for lemon and orange juice so I swapped for tamarind. Mine turned out some what gooey because I opted to add extra tamarind(good source of various vitamins/minerals) for extra tang so the glaze did not set up well. On a positive, we really like gooey goodness around here so we are quite pleased with the conversion. The original filling also called for chopped walnuts which I substituted roasted chickpeas for- the chickpeas were an improvement! I was never a fan of walnuts! :-) But if you can have nuts you could use any chopped nut instead of the roasted chickpea. The flour was a direct substitution so you could just use the same amount of wheat if it is something you can eat.

If I were making these to share I would stick to the 3 tablespoons of tamarind- but if you aren't trying to impress anyone? Go for more tamarind!

3/4 cup Tropical Traditions palm shortening
3/4 cup homemade powdered sugar(caution with store bought versions.)
1 1/2 cup gluten free all purpose flour(homemade, none of the store bought are considered safe)
dash of salt(safe for you)

2 eggs
1 cup homemade packed brown sugar(organic domino's plus Plantation organic blackstap molasses)
2 Tablespoons gluten free all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon homemade baking powder(1 part tapioca starch,1 part baking soda and 2 parts cream of tartar)
1/2 teaspoon homemade vanilla extract.
1/2 cup homemade roasted chickpea's
1/2 cup Tropical Traditions coconut flakes


1 1/2 cup homemade powdered sugar
2 Tablespoons melted coconut oil
3 Tablespoons Tamarind puree(we buy the block of fruit and make our own puree)

1) Preheat oven to 350 and line a 9x13 with parchment paper(you can cut the recipe in half and use a 8 x 8 pan)

2) CRUST: In bowl combine powdered sugar, flour and salt. Cut in shortening. Press firmly into base of your pan.
A)Place in oven and bake for 12-15 minutes.

3) While crust is baking, in bowl combine eggs,flour,baking powder,brown sugar, vanilla. Mix until well combined. Lastly, stir in coconut and chickpeas.

4)While crust is still hot, pour filling over the crust.

5)Bake for 20 more minutes.

6) While it bakes prepare your glaze. Combine powdered sugar,tamarind and coconut oil. I ended up using a few extra tablespoons of tamarind which was a wonderful flavor, but the glaze did not set so they ended up kind of messy!

7) When still hot cover in tamarind glaze.

8) Allow to cool completely(consider chilling) before cutting.


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