Wednesday, April 22, 2009

apple muffins

Apple Muffins

preheat oven to 350.

2 large apples, chopped into TINY pieces (or food processor to chop into ultra fine pieces...or grated apples, but not applesauce or apple puree)
3 cups Pamela's Baking Mix
4 eggs
2 Tbspn vanilla extract
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/3 cup water
2 good strong dashes of cinnamon

Mix all together, really really well. Spoon into greased muffin cups and bake at 350 for 17 minutes.

makes REALLY good muffins. Lightly sweet. Good apple flavor.

I didn't even peel my apples, just cored them and put them into the chopper. Would probably also be good with coarse sugar sprinkled on top with an extra little bit of cinnamon.


Thursday, April 16, 2009

kinnikinnick is at it again

One of the food items I served at my party the other night was pizza. Gluten Free of course. I had been eyeing Kinnikinnick's pizza crust in the freezer section of my grocery for months and thought this would be a good chance to give it a try. Every other product of theirs that I've tried is simply amazing and "normal" that I hoped this would be as well.

It was magnificent! I prefer very thin crust pizza but this was delicious. It wasn't a bit grainy, like rice flour can sometimes be. It had a good solid crust on the bottom and was moist without being wet in the middle. Where the pizza sauce lay on it, it was good, not gooey like I've had before, but really perfect.

I love you Kinnikinnick for making such amazing GF products.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

my sister's upcoming wedding and testing out ideas

I'm making the wedding cake for my sister's wedding in June. We've chosen a 5" cake for her and Patrick and individual wedding cakes for the attendees. My sister has left almost everything up to my judgement as far as the cakes go. My first thought was to do basic cupcakes but I wanted something more substantial. My second thought was to use my new popover pan and end up with larger cupcakes that could be filled and decorated like a regular cake, but popovers are kind of conical shaped and that might look strange. My third thought was to use soup cans. I know it sounds bizarre but it works really great and keeps me from having to buy several 3" cake pans and cooking all day to get the number of cakes I need.

cupcake, popover, can-cake

My friends are so sweet to let me test cake recipes and decoration ideas on them. My friend Kim just had a birthday on Sunday so a few of the girls are coming over tonight and we are having a little party for her and an excuse to get the girls together and hang out. I'm using all the opportunities I have to make cakes and practice my decorating skills.

I'll update with a picture of the cupcakes as soon as I get a good picture of them with the Royal Icing flowers placed on top. Rumors tell me that Royal Icing breaks down on buttercream so I don't want them sitting there too long before the party...just in case. (Photo at very top) Here's a photo of them pre-flower.

ok, so I tossed out the popover idea because of how awesome the can-cake turned out and because the popover sides were so angled. Using the can-cake, I divided it in half and put a layer of buttercream frosting and then did the basic white frosting be decorated from there.

This isn't the exact way I want to decorate my sister's guest cakes, but it's cute and it worked for this one and matches the cupcakes.

I like how this angle looks, just wish I hadn't created so many angles on the round cake sides. :) I'm being perfectionistic again.

and here's another angle of the can-cake on top of the cupcake stand with the cupcakes


Remember the cookie cake I just made? Well, turns out it probably makes better cookies than cookie-cakes...It was just too oily and gritty. If I try this recipe again, I'd cut down the oil by half, add 1 egg (but then it's no longer vegan, your choice) and use a much finer milled almond flour.

So, being unhappy with the cookie, I scraped the frosting off and sent the cookie-cake thru the food processor to turn it into crumbs.

Then I put all those delicious crumbs into a pie plate for a crust. Would it become a cheesecake or a fruit pie? Could I make anything else with the ingredients I have currently? So checking the pantry and refrigerator, I realized I'd have to grocery shop in order to make any type of pie. And I had some sugar free pudding that was begging to be added to the pie.

So after the grocery store, I made up 2 types of sugar free pudding: Chocolate and White chocolate. I added the white chocolate into the pie crust first and then topped it with the chocolate. Let sit for 3 hours in fridge and viola! Pudding Pie!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Elana's Pantry has some amazing gluten free recipes and I recommend people try them!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Preheat oven to 350.

2 1/2 cups Almond Flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
1/2 cup agave nectar
1 tablespoon vanilla

Mix all dry ingredients together. In separate bowl mix grapeseed oil, agave nectar and vanilla and stir. Pour into dry ingredients and stir until incorporated. Add chocolate chips.

Scoop onto prepared cookie sheet and flatten slightly.

Bake for 8-10 minutes at 350.

I made a couple changes to the cookies I made: 2 cups Almond flour and 1/2 cup white rice flour. Also I pressed the entire batch of cookie dough into an 8" square brownie pan to make a cookie cake...The dough rises a bit, and since I've not cut into the cookie cake yet, I'm not 100% sure the inside is cooked. I probably could have used a larger pan and spread the batter slightly thinner.

It smells wonderful and I love cookie cakes with the shell border. It tastes good, but the almond flour I used (Bob's Redmill Almond Meal/Flour) is definitely more of a MEAL than can see the grainy almonds in the image and I think I'd prefer a more finely ground flour for this cookie.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

chocolate chip cookies!

They are so good.

Chocolate Chip Cookies
adapted from Nestle Tollhouse recipe

1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup real butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 tbspn vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup corn flour
1/4 cup potato flour
1/4 cup tapioca starch
1 1/4 cup white rice flour
1 1/2 tsp Xanthan Gum
2 cups chocolate chips (+ - as desired)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Soften butter and blend with shortening and sugars. Add vanilla and eggs.

In a separate bowl, mix soda, powder, corn flour, potato flour, tapioca starch, white rice flour and xanthan gum. Using a whisk, mix together thoroughly.

Add dry to wet ingredients and mix completely. Stir in chocolate chips.

Scoop in tablespoon sized drops to cookie sheet and flatten slightly.

Bake for 10 minutes.

Friday, April 3, 2009

I've been making a lot of flour tortilla's these past few days...Most attempts have been ultra small batches of test recipes I've created with varying results. None have been as good as that very first attempt I made a few weeks ago and even those weren't quite as I remember gluten-filled flour tortilla's to be. So I grabbed a recipe off the LivingWithout site to try out.

I still had to modify their recipe (linked above) a bit b/c I don't have any fava bean flour...I just did a straight replacement with Teff flour. I don't know much about Teff or Fava Bean flour, so I don't know if that's a fair substitution, but it worked out. They are good. Definitely better than my latest recipe-fail, these are soft, flexible and they taste...well, I can't place the taste, but they are good. Still not what I remember regular flour tortillas to taste like, but pretty good, nonetheless.

The recipe says it makes 6-8 tortillas and instead of rolling them out, I used my tortilla press. My tortillas might have been thinner than the recipe recommends but they turned out just fine, so use your tortilla press too. If you don't have a tortilla press, get your little buns over to La Michoacana and pick one up! They are less than $20 and fresh handmade tortillas are SO much better than store tortillas.

Anyway, yeah, my tortillas were probably thinner than the recipe called for. No worries though, they draw in a little and thicken when cooked. I ended up with 13 tortillas. Steve and I split and tested the left over tortilla just to make sure it was good!

With 12 tortillas, I double ziplock bagged 6 of them and stuck them into the freezer for some other day and the remaining 6 into a ziplock bag for the next 3 days. I'm pretty certain that the Texas Motor Speedway (working for Chevy at the Nascar races this weekend) isn't going to offer gluten-free foods, so I'll be packing sandwiches for lunch.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

chocolate and peanut butter!

What two things go together better than chocolate and peanut butter? I cannot think of anything. They are perfect together.

what better for a chocolate cupcake than to be filled with peanut butter?

mmmmm, mmmm.

This recipe should make 8 regular cupcakes or 6 large ones...or just cram all the batter into 6 regular cupcake tins and let them rise and fall over the top. It's still good.

1 cup Pamela's Baking Mix
1/3 cup Powdered Sugar
3 Tbspn cocoa powder
(sift together till well mixed)
2 Tbspn vegetable oil
3 Tbspn cold water
1 egg
1/3 cup honey
1 Tbspn Vanilla extract

sift dry ingredients together to mix. add all wet ingredients and stir well (mixer if desired, but I just hand mixed)

pour batter into cupcake liners or directly into greased cupcake pan.

Bake at 350 for 18-22 minutes.

now, here's the fun part, After the cupcakes have cooled just a bit, using a pastry bag with a #21 star tip, fill with peanut butter. Stab that tip right into the very center top of the cupcakes about half an inch down and squeeze out about a tablespoon of peanut butter right into the cupcake...slowly pulling the tip towards the surface of the cupcake (still filling). Then top the cupcake with chocolate frosting. I imagine some chocolate or peanut butter pieces/sprinkles would be adorable right on top of that, but I didn't have any.

It's delicious!