Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Bride Becomes a Mama

And that means a baby shower for a sweet little girl!  The menu for our afternoon tea will include family favorites, cream puffs, brown sugar pound cake and brownie bites (packaged fudge brownie mix baked in mini-muffin tins, and topped with out favorite frosting.)  The gluten-free among us will enjoy  chocolate chip-walnut blondies,  peanut butter cookies, and my version of Starbuck's lemon loaf.

This is the first time I've tried the chocolate chip blondies which are made with almond flour and I was so pleased with the results! Meaningful Eats has  a lot of good recipes if you are living gluten-free.

Seafood Bisque

This is a family favorite, served each Christmas Eve at my cousin's open house. When I asked for the recipe, I was shocked to find out it was dressed up canned soup.  It was also popular at our church's annual soup  ssale and when I asked for the recipe, I got the same story.So the search began for seafood bisque from scratch.  I am not sure where I got the basic recipe, but I did make enough changes in the seasonings to suit our family and to call this recipe my own.

Ingredients:
·       6 tablespoons butter
·       4 tablespoons chopped green onion (or minced onion since I never remember to buy the green onions!)
·       4 tablespoons minced celery
·       6 tablespoons flour
·       5 cups milk
·       3/4 teaspoon pepper
·       1 tsp. granulated onion
·       ½ tsp granulated garlic
·       ½ tsp  Old Bay seasoning
·       ½ tsp ground thyme
·       4 tablespoons tomato paste
·       2 cups (1 pint) heavy whipping cream
·       16 ounces crab meat
·       16 ounces small cooked shrimp or other seafood
·       4 tablespoon sherry (rice vinegar)

Scott added a bit of cayenne and Tabasco Sauce to his bowl of soup.
Preparation: Heat butter over medium-low heat; add green onion and celery. Saute until tender. Blend in flour; cook, stirring, for about 1 minute. Slowly stir in the milk, cooking and stirring until thickened. Add seasonings, tomato paste and heavy cream. Stir in the crab, shrimp, and sherry. Bring to a simmer. Serve hot.
Serves 4 to 6.


Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Flourless Brownie Bites

My daughter sent me to  to Averie Cooks for a great brownie bite recipe.  Not being a huge fan of banana I was a little skeptical, but these brownie bites were delicious and took less than a half an hour start to finish. I might try them in the food processor next time since it is a little easier to work with than the blender.

The Brownie Bites were no more trouble to make than packaged gluten free brownies and taste so much better and have a bit of protein from the egg and peanut butter as well as a bit of fiber from the peanut butter and banana.

I look forward to exploring Averie Cooks for more recipes.


Friday, October 4, 2013

Gluten Free Lemon Bars

This recipe is fan update to the original lemon bar recipe from my orange Betty Crocker cookbook, (circa 1979).  It was a simple substitution of gluten free flours for the all purpose wheat flour.  These are not sugar free in any way, but I can only give up so much...


Gluten Free Lemon Bars

Begin the lemon bars preheating oven to 350 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl mix: (I used food processor)
40g coconut flour +100g GF flour containing xanthum gum 
(or  1 cup high quality gluten free flour containing xanthm gum. )
1/2 cup butter
1/3 cup confectioners sugar
until it holds together. Press mixture into an 8x8 pan and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

While the cookie base is baking beat
2 eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Beat until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Pour over hot crust. Bake about 25 minutes longer or just until no imprint remains when touched lightly in center. Cool, cut in squares and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

My Mom's Peach Cobbler

I grew up in a farm family. My father and grandfather farmed several hundred acres of peach and apple orchards.  My mom made peach everything... from frozen peach mouse to peach barbecue sauce and peach muffins (my personal favorite!) But the one thing that showed up most often was peach cobbler.  Here is my mom's recipe, as published in The Richwood Cookbook, one of those small-town, spiral-bound cookbooks containing some of the best recipes ever!

Peach Cobbler
5 cups peaches
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons instant tapioca (usually found with the pudding and Jello at the store)
2 1/2 cups biscuit mix
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons oil or melted butter
1 egg and milk to measure 1/2 cup

In a sauce pan, bring peaches,  1 c. sugar anad tapioca to a boil.  Pour into a 9" square pan.
In a bowl, combine biscuit mix, 3 tablespoons of sugar, oil and egg-milk mixture and mix until blended.  Top the hot fruit with 9 large spoonfuls of batter.  Bake at 375 degrees F.  for about 20 minutes until biscuit are golden brown and fruit is bubbly.

Note:  The 5 cups peaches, 1 cup sugar and 2 tablespoons of tapioca can be prepared and frozen for winter use.  To use, remove from freezer to thaw. When thawed, proceed as directed above.

Recipe courtesy of Pat Young.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Brown Sugar Pound Cake


This is an old family favorite (from the days we didn't care how much butter and sugar a recipe contained)  my mother used to make for bake sales.  She would bake it in loaf pans and have one to take to the sale and one to keep at home.   Because of the amount of butter and sugar, I now reserve it for special occasions or to take to church events or dinners since it serves easily.  It needs no frosting!

Bround Sugar Pound Cake

  • 1 ½ cups butter
  • 1 pound brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt.


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  
Grease and flour two 9x5” loaf pans or one Bundt pan. 
Mix dry ingredients together in a small bowl.
Mix bilk and vanilla together in a measuring cup.
In the mixing bowl cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy.  Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition until the mixture is smooth.  Blend in about 1/3 of the flour mixture at a time, alternating with the milk/vanilla mixture.  Begin and end with flour.  This helps to preserve the air bubbles you have just carefully beaten into your butter and eggs and helps to make a cake with a more  delicate texture.  
Spoon into prepared pan(s) and bake four about 1 hour.  Bundt pans sometimes take a bit longer.  The edges should be well-browned and a toothpick should come out clean when testing the cake.  
Cool cake in pans for about 15 minutes.  Turn out onto a rack or cake plate and allow to cool completely before cutting.  

This is a good make-ahead cake, because it always seems to taste better the day after it’s baked!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Four Ingredient Nutella Cookies

I still don't get how nut butter and eggs make cookies that taste like they were made with wheat flour, but I am glad that the combination works!  I found a recipe for Nutella cookies here, but I was afraid they would be too sweet, so here is my interpretation of the recipe.  Never one to make just a few cookies, I also doubled the amount of nut butter and adjusted the eggs to make 5 1/2 dozen cookies.  It is always good to have something gluten-free and chocolate in the freezer!


  • 1 1/2 cups Nutella
  • 1/2 cup Sun Butter
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts


Beat the first three ingredients till smooth and silky.  This will take some work,  I used my Kitchen Aid.  (Gluten free has not yet healed the arthritic fingers!)
Stir in the nuts. 
Drop by teaspoonsful (smallest sized Pamapered Chef cookie scoop) onto parchment lined cookie tray.  Place no more than 12 per tray since the spread.
Bake 9-11 minutes at 350 degrees F.  If you bake two or more trays at one time, switch their position in the oven part way through the baking time.
Cool on wire racks, Remove from parchment when they are cool.