Archive of ‘Baking’ category
Weird things happen when you move. You search through your cupboards and realize it’s time to start eating up all the stuff that has just been sitting there.
You know, that stuff that has been there so long, it sticks to the bottom of the shelves. The stuff that you’ve forgotten is there….or wonder why you bought in the first place.
Then, you end up doing strange things. Like having a new appreciation for relish that you have leftover from last summer’s barbecue. Surprisingly it doesn’t go bad….and even more surprisingly, it tastes really good on just about everything…including scrambled eggs. Who wouda thought.
Your lunch consists of interesting combos like green smoothies (because you have so many frozen fruits and veggies) paired with frozen buffalo chicken wings (that you stuck in your freezer for apps on football sunday and forgot about).
I’ll spare you the buffalo wings photo
You make Jello. Eat gluten-free mac and cheese (pretty darn good, why’d I wait so long to eat it?). And donate six jars of salsa to your sister’s birthday party this weekend (why did I have so many?).
And then you find yourself with random ingredients and realize you should start baking. That’s more fun than packing anyways.
This weekend, I found myself with a mix of quinoa, oats, almond butter, dried cranberries, flax, and a few other cupboard things. And from the blog posts I’ve been reading lately, this sounded like just the perfect excuse to bake quinoa cookies.
I won’t go too far into the recipe because it’s similar to the one that Katie at Yes, I Want Cake posted the other day, but all i will say about it is- if you haven’t made quinoa cookies, YOU MUST TRY IT. Do not wait until you move and have to clean up your cupboards.
I just threw in quinoa, oats, applesauce, almond butter, and some dried fruit/chocolate chips, plus an egg and a couple other good things.
Then, plopped them onto a cookie sheet and baked for 10 minutes or so.
And out came quinoa-oat cookies! They’re sweet, but not too sweet. They’re more like a snack or breakfast type cookie instead of typical dessert. But don’t let that fool you. They’re so good that they’re all already gone.
I’m making more.
I just already used up all the ingredients, so it’ll have to wait until next month.
And now that my cupboards are almost bare, I guess I’ll have to finally start packing the closet…..I’m only moving a mile away, but moving’s still moving.
-Have you baked anything good lately?
-Eaten any random combos? Like relish or hate it?
-When’s the last time you moved?
Yesterday, while someone slept….
I made MUFFINS!
Dashing Dish’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana (gluten free!) Muffins to be exact.
I KNEW, as soon as I saw the recipe that I had to make them, like make them immediately. I think her website is down, but I’ll post the proper link as soon as it’s back up.
And best part (which I’m guessing is true for you as well?) I already had all the ingredients in my kitchen (except for the yogurt, but that was so easy to pick up).
I’ve never baked with a blender before- have you?
It was sort of fun to mix everything with the blender (ingredients are oatmeal, sugar, cocoa, peanut butter, mashed banana, egg whites, greek yogurt, baking soda & powder, and hot water)
I added chocolate chips, cause that’s just what I do. And modified it slightly, but not enough to call it my own, so just check out Dashing Dish.
They came out yummy! So moist (even the next day). And they’re pretty healthy.
I’ve already eaten four (two yesterday and two for breakfast today)…. And that’s four full size and not mini (oops). And guess what, they’re awesome.
After swimming two miles this morning, here was my Ironman’s breakfast. I think he could use some protein, don’t you? (and what is the spoon for? beats me…ha)
I see more muffins in my future!
–What’s your favorite type of muffin?
Good morning! Want a muffin?
How about one with big, juicy blueberries just waiting to be bitten into?
Sorry, too late. I already ate them all.
Just kidding….I was good, I shared.
My best friend had a baby last week (an adorable little boy!) so I wanted to bake for them. I brought over Oatmeal Blueberry Muffins.
Yes, I saved 2 for me (I had to taste test). But these were so easy and muffins are some a nice part of breakfast (or a snack) that I will def be making them again. My first batch was a bit dry, so I adjusted the recipe accordingly.
BLUBERRY OATMEAL MUFFINS
Makes about 12 muffins (or 24 mini muffins)
* 1-1/2 cups flour
* 3/4 cup oats
* 2 teaspoons baking powder
* 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1 beaten egg
* 3/4 cup milk
* 1/2 cup packed brown sugar plus 1 tablespoon
* 1/3 cup plain yogurt
* 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
* 3/4 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (I used frozen)
Instructions– really simple.
1. Grease a muffin pan (I just sprayed it with cooking spray) and preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. In your larger bowl, stir flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the egg, milk, brown sugar, yogurt, and vanilla.
4. Add egg mixture to flour mixture and stir until just moistened, but still lumpy.
5. Fold blueberries into the batter.
6. Spoon the batter into the muffin cups, filling each three-quarters full.
4. Bake in a 400 degree F oven for 15-17 minutes
Blueberries give you your antioxidents
Oats are full of fiber (magnesium and selenium too!)
These muffins are not too sweet, so add jam (blueberry would be my pick) or honey if you’d like.
I enjoyed mine with a little icelandic butter and lemon curd- for a treat.
When was the last time you BAKED or ATE a muffin? And what kind was it?
How’s that for a random title?
Do you like the flavor of lemon? Even a little bit? If so, then you MUST make this. Trust me.
My mom loves everything lemon: lemon tarts, lemonade, lemon chicken, etc. So for her birthday, this was the perfect recipe. I got my bake-on yesterday afternoon.
This was a fun, not-so-difficult recipe. My only fail was that my mixer somehow broke JUST when I was starting the frosting. At first, it got a mind of it’s own and started increasing speed without me touching anything– speed 1-7 in ten seconds and no control. Then it just stopped working alltogether. I’m so bummed. I love that thing, use it all the time, and it’s not very old (2 years). I have to check the warranty.
Notice that my mixer was working here
Oh well. Despite the frosting looking a little funny, the cake still came out delicious. Fluffy, sweet, lemon-y.
Cooling cakes next to lemons used for the frosting......oh so good.
I would make this recipe again. It’s gluten free, by the way. NO ONE NOTICED (and I didn’t tell them! haha, sneaky me).
We celebrated her birthday last night with a Murder Mystery Dinner! It was circus themed.
Started with circus themed appetizers– Mini Corn-dogs, flavored popcorn, peantus, etc. My sister did a great job with the apps. My dad put circus decorations all over the house.
Corndogs, popcorn, peanuts. Where's the cotton candy??
We dressed in costume for our characters. I was the bearded lady (who it turned out was actually a man!).
See the strong man?
Even Charlie had a character
Ate dinner inbetween clues.
Plus chicken and rosted veggies and a yummy roll
And then, of course, dug into dessert. Luckily, we let the murderer eat dessert too.
Especially because the murderer turned out to be the birthday girl!
The birthday mom in her gypsy circus outfit ready to blow out candles
This was a fun way to celebrate. Happy Birthday, Mom!
Like lemon? Think I should have told them it was gluten-free?
Have you done a murder mystery party?
Why have I never made nut butter before??? It is so ridiculously easy! And it tastes so amazingly good!
This past weekend, I finally made nut butter. It may be the start of a very fun recipe streak.
Here’s my easy How-To:
Maple Cinnamon Walnut Butter
I bought a few cups of walnuts out of the bulk bins at Whole Foods. I nibbled on a bunch before I actually made the butter, so I would guess that I used 2.5 cups of walnuts for my walnut butter.
Threw it in the food processor.
Began grinding. After about a minute, it looked all grainy like this:
Keep blending. After another minute or two, it will get creamier.
Then, I added 2 tbs maple syrup, 1 tbs cinnamon, and 1 tsp sea salt (actually, that’s a lie– I originally forgot the salt and had to add it mid-way through the last mixing segment, but for recipe sake, let’s pretend that I added it when I was supposed to).
I let it pulse for another minute.
And that was it! My very own Walnut Butter!
The maple cinammon flavor is very slight (I wanted it that way), so if you want it sweeter, feel free to add more.
I then tested my recipe with numerous spoonfuls and finally put it on a plate with a green apple.
Charlie was very, very intrigued. I think the fresh walnut smell was driving him nuts (haha, no pun intended!).
"I'm sitting nicely Mom, can you share some with me, PLEASE."
So, I was a nice doggie-mom and let him lick some off my fingers. He was in heaven. Yes, I’ve said before that he eats most things, but I can still tell when he really likes something
I spooned it all into an old pb jar. It filled about 2/3 of the jar. (Please excuse the ugly label, I put a better one on later that day.)
"I am not letting that jar out of my sight," thinks Charlie.
And there you go, homemade nut butter!! I’m all inspired to try making almond and cashew butters now.
Your turn! Go ahead, make some! MUCH cheaper than the store-bought, fresh, omega-3s, deliciousness!
Just a side note– I tried making this in the blender first (was having trouble putting the food processor together). It didn’t work– the nuts kept getting stuck in the blade and it never made it past the grainy-stage. So just in case you were wondering, thought it was worth mentioning.
Have you made nut butter before? Do they even sell walnut butter in the store?
This moring, I got up early and did the thing that makes every day start off great– I baked cookies!
Yes, it was before breakfast, before the sun came up, and well before I even showered. But it made me happy– nothing like the smell of cookies in the morning to start the day off right (and of course, cookie dough and warm cookies is the best breakfast anyways).
Chocolate and Peanut Butter Chip Cookies.
Delicious. It’s an adaptation of Nestle’s Cookie Recipe.
- 2 1/2 cups Flour
- 3/4 cup Sugar
- 3/4 cup Brown Sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 sticks of butter, minus 2 tablespoons
- 1 tbs vanilla (or even a dash more– vanilla makes the cookies great!)
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/4 cup chocolate chips
- 1 1/4 cup peanut butter chips
Into the red bowl. Mixed altogether
Add chocolate chips. Then Peanut Butter chips. Stick a few in your mouth, just for test purposes.
Plopped it onto the baking sheet
Into the oven.
Wait 11-14 minutes while enjoying the sunrise.
Eat one immediately.
Best breakfast ever!
Last night, I attempted to make these Flourless Fudge Cookies. They look so good, right? I was so excited and I’d never tried a gluten-free baking recipe yet (and it’s one of my new years resolutions), so I figured there’s no better time than the present.
Welll……… let’s just say, mine looked nothing like the photo! They were all gooey and just spread out in the pan. Look at that massive one on the bottom right! Fail?
It was my bad– I used regular cocoa instead of Dutch-Processed Cocoa. I guess Dutch Processed works like baking soda and rises when cooked. Regular cocoa doesn’t (maybe I should have added some?) so that’s why they are so flat and lifeless.
Luckily, they still tasted somewhat decent. The ingredients are basically all sugar and cocoa, so how could they not? More like doughy fudge than a cookie though.
I ate two. I didn’t need more sugar last night (see below), but I wanted to try them (and I’m sugar-addicted these days it seems).
They’re not pretty, so I’ll refrain from bringing them to share with my co-workers. Adventures in gluten-free baking to be continued……….
Rewind to Dinner:
I ate too many chocolate covered almonds on my way home from work so wasn’t actually very hungry (ahhhh more sugar!!). I made grilled eggplant, yellow squash, peas, and tofu. It was yummy.
2012 resolution prep and what’s up with all that sugar?
I thought a lot last night about all the sugar I’ve been eating lately (holidays, baking, handfuls of chocolate almonds, etc) and how it’s making me feel like crap. And make me crave more sugar. And then feel like crap again! Totally a result of the holidays and all the fun celebrations, but it’s time to focus on eating LESS white, processed sugar (fruit is fine with me) for a while. We’ll see how it goes…..
A few bloggers (Tina and Theodora) have posted recently about “SMART” resolutions—which stands for specific, measurable, accountable, realistic, timeframe— to help you reach your goals. They work especially well for healthy living goals and mapping out exactly what you want to achieve and how to get there. I’m planning to post my 2012 resolutions later today, so am trying to keep SMART in mind while I finish them.
I woke up early and went for a 3 mile run. It felt terrific! I haven’t run much in the past month or two (again holidays, laziness, cold weather, etc), but this run was so nice that I want to start regularly again (and hey, it keeps me out of the crowded gym!).
Breakfast this morning was a yogurt bowl with a banana, chia seeds, frozen blueberries and raspberries. And green tea. I had enough coffee yesterday to last me for a while.
Yogurt– I usually eat Wildwood’s Soy Probiotic, Unsweetened, Plain yogurt. They don’t sell it many stores and I don’t eat yogurt that often, but when I do, this is the kind I like. It’s a bit of an “acquired” taste (aka, I gagged the first time I tried it), probably because of the lack of sugar (there’s only 2 grams in the cup, which is MUCH less than a normal Plain yogurt or a Greek yogurt), but it’s gluten/dairy free and has added probiotics, which helps my tummy. Anyways, try it before you knock it.
Ok, time for work!
Are you feeling like you’re on sugar overload too or is it just me?? And– share your Gluten Free Baking recipes please!!