Category Archives: breakfast

Gluten-Free PB&J The Way The Big Girls Do It

Switch out fresh fruit for the jelly

My mom turned me on to this gourmet version of a PB&J. Simply toast your favorite gluten-free bread (I use Udi‘s) and top with a natural chunky peanut butter, sliced fresh strawberries and a drizzle of raw honey. It’s light, healthy, and a wonderful way to start the day. I had this with my coffee this morning and it was a real treat.

I’ve also used bananas and blueberries, and my daughter has used sliced grapes. Someone else suggested blueberries and I’m thinking even sliced peaches, apples, or pears would be great. The sky’s the limit when it comes to fresh, in-season fruit. Have fun.

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Filed under breakfast, dinner, gluten free, honey, peanut butter, strawberries, toast, Udi's, vegetarian

Gluten-free, egg-free, fresh blueberry muffins

Now that Darling Daughter is egg-free, it makes baking a little more difficult. We don’t want to give up everything, but we also don’t want her skin rashes to return so it’s EF we go. Along with being gluten free, this means we’ve got another challenge on our hands. And, as you know dear chefs, I love a challenge.
This morning I wanted to wake up with yummy, fresh blueberry muffins. What I came up with are sweet, moist and light blueberry muffins with no egg in sight. How, you ask? (I know you’re asking, go ahead) Simple, I scoured the Internet to find out what I could use for replacements. I have already used flax/water mixture, but wanted something that would be a little more moist. That led me to apple sauce or pureed fruit of some kind. Since I had apple sauce in the fridge, easy fix.
The recipe that follows is a hybrid of The Cake Doctor Bakes Gluten Free and my own tweaks and changes to eliminate the eggs. It does have butter in it, but if you wanted a vegan muffin I’m sure you could use a little oil or vegan margarine in its place.
Blueberry muffins, perfect for Fourth of July!
Gluten-free, Egg-free Blueberry Muffin
1 box Gluten Free Pantry Old Fashioned Cake & Cookie Mix
2 Tbs Ground Flax
5 Tbs warm water
4 Tbs apple sauce (natural, no HFCS or sugar)
1/4 cup raw sugar
1 Tbs GF vanilla extract
3/4 cup grapefruit juice (recipe called for OJ, but I didn’t have any. This worked out great)
1 Tbs fresh lemon juice
1 stick butter, melted
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Mix flax with hot water and mix well. Place in fridge to cool.
3. Reserve 1 Tbs of the cake mix in a small bowl.
4. Add remaining cake mix, apple sauce, sugar, vanilla, grapefruit juice, lemon juice and butter. Mix well. I used a fork, no need to pull out a mixer for this.
5. Add flax mixture to muffin mix after stirring well. You may need to add a little more water to make sure it’s at egg consistency before adding. Mix this into the muffin batter well.
6.  Toss blueberries with the reserved cake mix and then fold into muffin mix gently.
7. Line muffin tins with liners and scoop out mix into cups. Fill about 3/4 full. You’ll get about 17-20 muffins, depending on the size of the blueberries you use.
8. Optional: Sprinkle top of muffins with a pinch of raw sugar to get a crispy top.
9. Bake for 20-24 minutes until golden brown.
10. Let cool for a few minutes, then remove from pan and complete cooling. I dare you to let them cool all the way before eating them!
Enjoy!

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Filed under blueberries, breakfast, egg substitute, egg-free, flax, gluten free, muffins, snack

Gluten-free, vegan, buckwheat carrot muffins

I spent a glorious weekend in San Luis Obispo, CA with some dear friends and got back yesterday feeling like a child who had to leave Disney early. I wanted to stay and explore the farmers markets more, discover more hidden restaurants with lovely, knowledgeable servers and chefs who take care and creativity to new heights. These are just a few of the wonderful memories I have of this weekend, along with my dear friend who will now be the pastry chef at the Dolphin Bay Resort. (I know, pastry chef and me, go figure. She’s a fabulous chef and I’ve learned so much from her about cooking over the years.)

Spring Salad at Luna Red

We ate lunch at Luna Red in downtown San Luis Obispo and had a brilliant, light, crunchy salad that was perfect for a warm Spring day in California. With the Greekfest right next door, the music made our day even more festive. The salad was filled with pea shoots, blood orange segments, carrots, radish, mint, a light citrus vinaigrette and a sprinkle of goat cheese. Couldn’t have asked for anything better. A glass of rose and a table full of good friends made the afternoon complete. I highly recommend the restaurant.

The amazing selection of veggies at the farmers marke

One booth at the farmers market caught my eye, of course, with their big Gluten Free Goodies sign. I couldn’t resist and bought a GF carrot cake muffin made with buckwheat and a delicious quinoa salad I’ll be recreating later this week. (attempting I should say). It was filling and had a beautiful mix of savory and sweet with roasted veggies (yummy roasted carrots) and pepitas. I ate it cold right out of the container. Oh yeah!

But first up, after eating what was the best carrot cake muffin I’ve ever had (including my gluten-eating days), I decided to try and make it at home. Since Daughter has now eliminated eggs from her diet, that makes things a little more difficult, but not impossible. I do have vegan friends who I know will enjoy these also. The muffins in CA were not vegan, so this is just a small change and more of a challenge. I searched the Internet and found this recipe at She Let Them Eat Cake.com for buckwheat carrot muffins. These are already vegan, which is a plus.

I modified the recipe a bit to my own tastes, but I would encourage you to try her recipe also. And if you can’t have some of the things I’ve added, feel free to eliminate what you want. I added the almond flour and GF oats for flavor, and added the splash of juice just because it looked a little thick. This may change based on your altitude and ingredients. If you add molasses, you may not need any more liquid. But I do like the oats for texture and flavor.

Gluten-Free & Vegan Buckwheat Carrot Muffins

1 & 1/2 cups buckwheat flour
1/4 cup almond flour
1/4 cup GF oats
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 cups grated / shredded carrot (you could use zucchini too)

3/4 cup agave
1 mashed banana
3/4 cup olive oil
3 tbsp ground flax combined with 9 tbsp hot water (or 3 eggs)
Splash of orange juice to loosen up the mixture if you need it.
1/2 cup golden raisins

Eating these at my desk while I write this makes me very happy

1. Preheat oven to 350 and line a muffin pan with liners or grease with olive oil.

2. In a large bowl combine the first eight ingredients (dry).

3. Add shredded carrot to the dry ingredients and combine. In a medium-sized bowl combine agave, mashed banana, olive oil, and flax-hot water mixture. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Add raisins last.

4. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool to the touch.

These are quite good, and amazingly fluffy and not too dense, considering there is no egg in it. I’ve never used flax and hot water before and I was quite amused at the egg-white-like texture it creates. The mixture is quite thick and gummy before baking and that must be due to the flax mixture. What a find. I will certainly be trying this with other dishes and baked goods. This is my first attempt at gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free baking. So far, so good.

In retrospect, these could use just a little more sweetness so I think a bit of molasses and honey, or an orange glaze on top will make them just a touch sweeter and tasty. A bit of Tofutti cream cheese will make them sing for me in the morning with my tea. Try them and let me know what you think.

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Filed under baking, breakfast, buckwheat, carrots, dairy free, dessert, gluten free, muffins, raisins, sugar free, vegan, vegetarian

A Quick and Lovely Breakfast-Lemon Crepes

Have guests for breakfast, or feel like treating yourself to something a little more fancy than toast and PB this morning? Whip up some lemon crepes, brew a cup of tea, and sit back to a lovely, refreshing treat. Armed with a bowl of fresh lemons from a friend in town, my morning hungries led me straight to the Sweet Rice Flour and tada…crepes. This recipe is quick and easy, and you probably have everything in the house.

Lemon Crepes

Quick and Easy Lemon Crepes
1 cup Sweet Rice Flour
1 cup milk (almond or regular)
1 egg
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla
zest of one lemon
juice of one lemon
butter (for cooking crepes)

1. Combine all of the above ingredients, but just use 1/2 a cup of milk to start. Then add milk little by little until you have a mixture that resembles very loose pancake batter.

2. Put a tsp of butter in the bottom of a flat frying pan and melt over medium heat. (I don’t have a crepe pan and this works perfectly for me.) Take about 1/2 cup of crepe mixture and pour into pan while tilting pan to coat the bottom of the pan. Depending on the size of your pan, you may need a little more or less. You want a thin, even coat over the bottom, but not too thick.

3. Cook for about 1-2 minutes until the bottom looks slightly brown and the edges start to pull away. Then gently just slip a spatula under the crepe and flip it. Cook the other side for about a minute. Then slide it out onto a plate.

4. Use a little more butter for each crepe. This keeps it from sticking. Stack the crepes as you go, or fold them one by one.

5. Sprinkle each crepe with a little fresh lemon juice and powdered sugar. I have also spread these with Nutella (leave out the lemon), spread them with fresh strawberry jam, kumquat marmalade, or even just a little butter. Go crazy and put anything you want on them. My daughter loves hers simply with fresh strawberries.

Enjoy! These are refreshing and light, but sweet and comforting.

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Filed under breakfast, crepes, eggs, elegant, gluten free, lemon, rice flour, strawberries, vegetarian

Fresh Orange Cupcakes

I just love this time of year when the citrus trees are full of beautiful, fresh, sweet navel oranges. When we moved here 11 years ago, there were nine orange trees on the property. Now, there are three left that produce lovely fruit every year. Christmas morning, mimosas with fresh OJ are always on the menu.

But, what to do with all those oranges? Yes, I’m generous with them to everyone who visits, but I love cooking and baking, so I’m always looking to use them. Yesterday I had the urge to bake and decided on orange cupcakes with orange glaze on top. The fresh orange juice and grated orange peel makes it taste like a bite right out of an orange. If you don’t have oranges you can get right in your back yard, I supposed you could use frozen or store-bought OJ, but I don’t think it will be the same.

These were so good, I packed them into the basket on my bike this morning and rode over to a friend’s house for tea and cupcakes. What a beautiful way to start the week. Hope your week is grand.

Fresh Orange Cupcakes
1 package Gluten Free Pantry yellow cake mix
2/3 cup fresh OJ
Grated rind from two oranges
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
3 large eggs
1 stick butter, room temperature

Glaze
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2-3 Tbs fresh orange juice

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Add all ingredients to a large bowl and mix until smooth.
3. Line cupcake pan with cupcake papers.
4. Pour into cupcake pan, filling each about 3/4 full (this made 12 full-size cupcakes and about 9 minis)
5. Bake minis for about 10-12 minutes, full-sized cupcakes take about 5 more minutes.
6. Remove from oven and let cool completely while making the glaze.
7. To make the glaze, just add a little juice at a time to the sugar and mix until you have a thick, smooth consistency.
8. When cupcakes are cool, just drizzle the glaze over the top and add a little of the orange peel for color and a lovely tart bite, then let them set for a few minutes.

I dare you not to eat them in one night. They are so light and refreshing. But save some for tea in the morning, they are perfect.

Enjoy!

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Filed under breakfast, cake, cupcake, dessert, gluten free, orange, vegetarian

Gluten-free blueberry scones, the easy way

I woke up this morning with a craving for a scone. Now, I’m not usually a scone lover, they can be a bit dry for me. And couple that with gluten-free flour and you’re sure to get something that resembles crumbling drywall. But, nevertheless I was determined, and hungry. I looked in the cabinet and found GF Bisquick mix…Hmmm. What if…

It worked! What a treat. More like a cross between muffin and scone, it was perfect on a summer morning. I used frozen blueberries that I had frozen just a few months ago when huge, sweet blueberries were in season. If possible, try to use something like this rather than those little, tiny, chewy frozen ones. The rest is ad-libbed…and gutsy but successful. I didn’t have enough Bisquick, so I used about a 1/2 cup of GF yellow cake mix, which seemed to work out great.

Gluten-free blueberry scone and espresso

Blueberry scones
1 1/2 cup GF Bisquick mix
1/2 cup GF yellow cake mix
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup fresh goat cheese
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup frozen blueberries

Topping
2 TBS melted butter
1 tsp sugar

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Mix first 6 ingredients together in a bowl.
3. Once it’s all come together, add the blueberries and mix for a moment.
4. Turn out onto a table or board using a bit of the mix to “flour” the table. Knead a few times till mixed thoroughly, but don’t overdo it.
5. Pat out into a flat, round shape about an inch or so high, about 10-12 inches in diameter.
6. Melt butter for about 15 seconds, pour over the top, and spread evenly. Don’t worry if you don’t use it all, you just want a thin layer over the top to brown it up nicely.
7. Sprinkle the sugar evenly over the top of the dough. Depending on how big you’ve made it, you may need a little more.This will give it a lovely brown and crispy top.
8. Slice into 8-10 triangles.
9. Place on baking sheet covered with parchment paper, leaving about an inch between them.
10. Bake 15-20 minutes until golden brown.

Let them cool slightly and serve warm. I haven’t eaten one cold yet, but these are quite yummy. Like a blueberry muffin with a bit of biscuit/scone mixed in. Wonderful with a cup of coffee. (I caught my husband grabbing one and putting cream cheese on it.) Of course, add any fruit you like. I prefer the blueberries, but I’ll try strawberries or even apricots next time. I would also love to try a rosemary/lemon scone soon.

Enjoy!

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Filed under blueberries, breakfast, gluten free, scone, vegetarian

The new bagel in the house


Perhaps I should title this post- Udi’s does it again! While stocking up on their fabulous white and whole grain breads at Whole Foods today, I noticed something different in the freezer. Bagels! Now, I’ve had Glutino bagels and I was pleased with them, although they tend to be a little dense. In a pinch, they are good to have in the freezer…up until now…

I’m a true believer in Udi’s and can’t say enough about their wonderful products. Yes, I would be on the payroll if they’d have me, but I’m not. I’ve talked about bread before here and I still stand by the bread from Gluten Free Creations here in town, but move over for Udi’s, really!

If you haven’t had their bread, you are truly missing something. I’ve actually fooled people who didn’t know it was GF bread, and if you’ve eaten most GF breads you know that’s not easy to do. Most of them are only good for a doorstop. The bread can actually be eaten without toasting, smells wonderful and toasts to a beautiful, crusty golden brown. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed. But, today we’re talking bagels!

These bagels are so much like I remember bagels to be. Daughter closed her eyes and ate her half and smiled widely. “It’s crunchy,” she said. “Just the way they should be.” She’s not kidding, these bagels are soft on the inside, crunchy on the outside and have just enough “chew” to make it cream-cheese-worthy. Of course, my half had just butter, but Daughter had to do it up right with the cream cheese. Since she’s only been GF for about 6 months now, she appreciated it immensely. I haven’t had a bagel like this in about 5 years so this was a major treat for me.

This took me back to mornings spent on the floor of our apartment in NYC with the Sunday Times, bagels, coffee, and music. The paper was spread out all over the floor and we sat on the floor without speaking, just eating and reading. I know what I’m doing Sunday morning!

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