Posts tagged ‘gluten-free’

August 24, 2011

things that make me smile

I usually always have a few things that I look forward to each and every day.  Whether it be random products or websites, or (obviously) different foods and beverages.  Here are a few of my favorite things right now:

1. Iced Coffee (and Coffee in general).  I had stopped drinking coffee over the summer because I was getting a little too much sleep and therefore I was unable to fall asleep when I wanted to some nights.  Thank you working and getting up between 4:30 and 5:30 every morning to justify my daily coffee habit!  I am especially enjoying the iced variety – making it (or making meanie sister make it) the night before and keeping it in the fridge overnight.  Morning perfection!

2. My new Michael Kors sunglasses that were FREE.  That conference I worked at a couple of weeks ago in Sonoma?  I walked away with three pairs of Michael Kors sunglasses + a pair of Coach.  I love the look of the coach by themselves, but they don’t look as good on my face… but I will definitely wear them at some point in the future :).  And the best thing about the MK ones?  I got TWO pairs of the style I like!  One in black and one in red.  I haven’t worn the red ones out yet, but oh, their day is coming!

3. Babycakes – I have never been to Babycakes, but I am counting down the days until my Disney 1/2 Marathon in January so I can stop over at the Downtown Disney Babycakes location!  I had been a bit skeptical as to whether or not I would like their gluten free goodies since I am not a fan of Bob’s Red Mill mix – but this past weekend I had a gluten free cupcake with the same ingredients and it was FANTASTIC.  I think me not liking the mix had more to do with me not wanting to add a lot of sugar and oil to make the baked goodies taste good with the different flours.  I also would not mind a trip to Sweet Freedom Bakery.  Maybe a weekend trip to Philly is in order?!

4. Crosby.  Hard not to love him.  Especially when he is so sweet and cuddly most days.  He also has an obsession with coming along with us everywhere we go on the weekends… he just can’t be alone!  It is also his birthday on Monday… hmm what to do, what to do?

5. Postcards from friends in amazing places.  Aloha from Hawaii!  One of my good friends from college took a teaching job out there and I got a postcard in the mail from her today!  I should really work on sending her something back – and I also really want to try and figure out a time to see her when I go to Hawaii in November.  Unfortunately I will be going to two different islands than the one she’s on, but we’ll see if something will work out!

6. Phone calls that make me laugh.  First, this one was more of a chuckle than a laugh but a grown woman said “duuuh” to me on the phone today… turns out SHE was the one who did not know what she was talking about… hmm so I was laughing more about her than with her ;).  Another one?  Well, referring back to #3 and #4, Crosby is one lucky pup.  He is getting a custom-made gluten free cake made.  Yes, he gets a small piece (he absolutely loves it), and the rest is for us!  Bahaha.  So I was talking to the bakery and we were going through the decorations.  Male or Female?  Male.  Adult or Child?  Child (snicker).  Decorations?  We have swirls and dots, balloons, rainbows?  (Me talking to Kinley – they could do rainbows – couldn’t hold in my laughter and the guy on the phone was laughing with me too).  Oh any poor boy who would get a cake with a RAINBOW on it… this little guy is getting blue and green swirls and dots.  He’s excited.

7. Cake Batter Cashew Butter.  Can you tell I have birthdays on my brain?  I immediately ran to the grocery list and added “cashews” and “sprinkles”.  Yup, definitely making some this weekend for a special birthday breakfast ;).

A random thing I missed today?

Ice skating.  I figure skated for 8ish years when I was younger and for some reason I just really wanted to lace up my skates and go!  Unfortunately it’s a wee bit hot out for that… ;).  I got my butt kicked by sister instead for my second “personal training session”.

What things are making YOU happy today??

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August 20, 2011

a new kind of cookie

I have a major sweet tooth.  But I’m sure if you’ve read this blog before you’re aware of that fact ;).  But the strange thing is that when I switched to eating unprocessed foods, my tolerance for sweet things went waaay down.  I used to almost always choose milk chocolate over dark in a Russell Stover box – obviously I needed the higher sugar content.  I have even on more than one occasion (I refuse to count), made this Martha Steward Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe using two – yes, two cups of sugar.  And then proceed to eat the whole batch (well, not by myself obviously) over the course of a weekend.

Now, I am more likely to eat dark chocolate than even semi-sweet, and never milk chocolate.  Sugar in baked goods has gone down (or become non-existant) in all of my recipes.  Oh, and my love for coconut has increased significantly.  I used to think unsweetened coconut was, well, unsweet.  Now?  Oh my, it’s absolutely delectable.  Coconut flakes are pop in your  mouth good and coconut butter tastes like frosting.  Last night, Kinley and I purchased Coconut Flour for the first time.  Now combining all of my previous ramblings into one recipe?  Don’t mind if I do.

Gluten Free Coconut Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies makes 2 dozen

  • 3/4c sorghum flour
  • 1/4c + 2T coconut flour (Let’s Do… Organic®)
  • 1/2t baking soda
  • 1 stick earth balance (or butter)
  • 1/4c organic natural sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2t vanilla
  • 1c semisweet or dark chocolate chips (I used Guittard – made in a gluten free facility!)
1. In a small bowl, mix together the sorghum flour, coconut flour and baking soda.
2. In a large bowl, combine room-temperature earth balance and sugar with a handmixer until fluffy and smooth.
3. Mix in the egg and vanilla until combined.
4. Add the flour mixture and mix.  One of the best things about gluten free flours is that there is no chance of you over-mixing!
5. Time for the chocolate chips – so, so good.  Put them in and mix.
6. Scoop and roll (these won’t change much during cooking so what you put in will look pretty much like what comes out) and place these on a baking sheet and put in a 375′ oven for 8-10 minutes.
These cookies are a nice change from the Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies I have baked recently since they used oat flour as the base (as did the Wheat Free Chocolate Chip Cookies).
I do kind of love how the non-rolled ones look like coconut macaroons.  I have big ideas for the not-so pretty and semi-crumbly ones but I’ve got to talk the sister into going along with it ;).
August 16, 2011

granola for friends

I love granola much more than I should.  Yes, it is healthy, but not eaten by the handful like it so commonly is (in this household anyways).  After the gluten episode this past weekend we were forced to re-evaluate our oat consumption.  I was going on a nice streak there for a while where I had oats every breakfast – and I mean each and every breakfast.  Sure, there were a couple of other things thrown in their occasionally, but usually it was oats.  Regular oats, steel-cut oats, oat bran, overnight oats, dough-boy smoothies…  Because of the sheer consumption of oats and a new employee budget, gluten-free oats was not something that I even wanted to think about.  Yes, I will pay $2 for more oats and avoid paying $6 for just making sure they’re not cross-contaminated with wheat.  Well, as I now know – gluten-free oats should be the star of the show here.  Unfortunately we had over half of a big tub of good ol’ quaker oats to use up and I was not going to throw away any more food.  And there’s no better place to use up food you can no longer can eat than on your friends!  I surprised one of my good friends with a big ol’ bag of this granola.  And I will definitely be making it again for myself and sister with gluten-free oats.

Cinnamon-Vanilla Granola adapted from Coffee & Tea Warehouse 

  • 4 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2c light brown sugar
  • 1/4c oat flour (or whole-wheat)
  • 1/2t salt
  • 2t cinnamon
  • 1/3c grapeseed oil
  • 1/4c honey
  • 1t vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 300′ and get out a rimmed baking sheet.

2. Place rolled oats into a large bowl and add in the brown sugar, flour, salt and cinnamon.  Mix to distribute.

3. In a small sauce pan, heat up the oil and honey until they just come to a simmer.  Take off heat and add vanilla.

4. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir to combine.

5. Put on the baking sheet and bake for around 40 minutes or until golden brown, stirring every 10 minutes.

This recipe is incredibly versatile.  You can add nuts, seeds, dried fruits, cacao nibs… anything your heart fancies.  This was always my go-to granola recipe a few years back and I am not quite sure why I ever gave up using it!  I always added 1c of sunflower seeds in with the oats and it was awesome.

I highly recommend making this and having a bowl full of granola with the milk of your choice.  Just doesn’t get much better than that.

Want a more natural and gluten-free version?  Here’s what changes I will make next time for us!

  • 4 cups gluten-free rolled oats
  • 2T sucanat
  • 1/4c oat flour
  • 1/2t salt
  • 2t cinnamon
  • 1/3c grapeseed oil
  • 1/4c honey
  • 1t vanilla

I would consider decreasing the oil a bit as well… but it is just so darn good I don’t think I want to mess with it too much!  But I think decreasing the amount of sweetness and using sucanat instead of brown sugar will be the perfect alteration for our taste buds.

Now where are those gluten-free oats…