Finally, after a couple of days of so-so whole-grain recipes, I hit on one that is excellent. I had bookmarked this recipe last fall, but since I didn't have barley flour, I had to wait until my desire for these cookies, supplanted my resistance to stash yet another type of flour in my pantry. When growing up, snickerdoodles were my favorite of all my mom's homemade cookies. I have made whole-wheat snickerdoodles before from this recipe, and they are good, but they do contain some all-purpose flour, and my goal has been to find recipes that use none.
The Multigrain Snickerdoodles recipe I tried yesterday contains no all-purpose flour, but includes barley flour, ground oats, and traditional whole wheat flour. I found barley flour at Whole Foods in the bulk foods section, which I was grateful for so that I didn't have to commit to buying a whole bag. According to the book, Good to the Grain by Kim Boyce, barley flour was the main bread grain in Europe ~ 500 yrs ago, before the great rise of wheat. It also says barley flour works really well in doughs and batters (as a secondary flour) with a scent strangely reminiscent of ripe apricots.
I did not alter the recipe this time, except for cutting in half the ingredients for the cinnamon-sugar coating that the balls of dough are coated with. To coat my dough balls, I followed the procedure my mom taught us as kids, and that was to combine the cinnamon-sugar in a cereal bowl, drop a ball or two in at a time and roll it around before placing on the cookie sheet.
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks, 6 oz) unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups (10 1/2 oz) sugar
2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp orange juice
2 large eggs
1 1/3 cups (4 5/8 oz) old fashioned rolled oats, ground for 30 seconds in food processor
1 cup (4 oz) whole barley flour
3/4 cup (3 oz) traditional whole wheat flour
1/3 cup (2 3/8 oz) sugar
1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
(I cut the coating ingredients in half and had just enough to coat all 38 dough balls.)
Cream the butter, sugar, baking powder, salt and vanilla in a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer. Beat in the orange juice and eggs, scraping the bowl, then add the oats, barley flour and whole wheat flour, beating until well combined. Refrigerate the dough, covered, overnight.
The next day, preheat the oven to 350°. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment paper. To prepare the coating, combine the sugar and cinnamon in a large plastic bag. Drop the dough by the tablespoonful, 6 pieces or so at a time, into the bag. Gather the bag closed at the top, trapping some air inside. Shake gently to coat the balls with sugar mixture. Place them on prepared baking sheets and flatten to about 1/2 in. thick, using the flat bottom of a measuring cup or drinking glass.
Bake the cookies, reversing the pans midway through (top to bottom, bottom to top), until they're beginning to brown around the edges, 12 to 14 minutes. (I baked only 1 sheet of cookies at a time and all of my batches were closer to the 14 minute mark.)
Remove cookies from pan and cool completely on a wire rack. Store in an air-tight container. The book also says the cookies will stay soft and chewy unless you leave the cookies out over-night to harden and then store them. I prefer mine to stay soft and chewy so mine were stored after cooling.
It's hard for me to convey the deliciousness of the food without alot of photographic talent or eye-catching props, but believe me these cookies are good and well worth the effort if you are searching for whole-grain cookie recipes to try.