Monday, 23 March 2015

Spring Sugar Cookies - Gluten Free

I made my sugar cookie recipe the other day, decorated with royal icing, for spring.  We spent two days spring cleaning the house. My dad’s birthday is the day after the first official day of spring.
Why am I telling you this?

Because I woke up to snow on the ground again this morning.  

So I’m posting these happy, bright spring cookies today to remind myself that it is spring and warmer weather will come soon. Even if we are under a blanket of snow today.

What’s the weather like where you are?

Sugar Cookies

Gluten Free Sugar Cookies

sugar cookie

Prep Time:

Cook Time:

Yield:2-3 dozen cookies


  • 227 grams butter (room temperature)
  • 200 grams sugar (I used xylitol but white sugar in the same amount should work)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 280 grams all-purpose gluten free flour
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum if your mix does not include it
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar until it's a really light yellow (I use a stand mixer)
  3. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until combined.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and baking. Add this dry mixture to the sugar and butter, half at a time, and mix well.
  5. Scoop dough out onto a piece of plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 20-30 minutes. (This makes it easier to cut out shapes.)
  6. Flour counter with tapioca starch and use half of the dough (put the rest back in plastic in the fridge.)
  7. Roll out dough until about an eighth of an inch to a quarter of an inch thick or so.
  8. Dip a cookie cutter in some of the tapioca starch on the counter and cut out cookies.
  9. Place cut cookies on a pan lined with either parchment paper or a non-stick baking sheet (like Silpat)
  10. Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes or until lightly golden around the edges.
  11. Repeat with other half of dough.
  12. Let cool completely before icing.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Black Bean and Veggie Burgers (Gluten Free)

Hi! This morning I have for you a tasty, adaptable, and healthy recipe for black bean burgers.  These are perfect for a gluten free dinner or lunch and so great if you or someone in your house is also eating gluten free and vegetarian.

My twelve year old daughter is experimenting with being a vegetarian, and sticks to it for most of the time, but that leaves me scrambling sometimes at dinner. Having these ready all the time in the fridge or freezer as an option for her really helps out. (And for myself, because I love them too!)

These burgers are easy to make because everything just goes right into the food processor to start. Forming into patties just takes a careful hand. These patties are also customizable – depending on your mood or seasonal vegetables.  Sometimes I put corn, sometimes peppers. I’d like to try carrot, cilantro and red onion mix. 

These patties should please everyone though – and if they don’t, just change it up a bit.  Substitute in different veggies or add your favorite spices. This recipe works great with black beans also. Serve it plain, on a gluten free bun, or lettuce wrapped.  I hope you like them too!

Gluten Free Bean & Veggie Burgers

Gluten Free Bean & Veggie Burgers
Yield: 6
Preparation time: 5min
Cook time: 10min
  • 1 - 19 oz. can black beans, or red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ½ small onion, quartered
  • ¼ cup parsley
  • Squeeze of lime juice
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • ½ cup almond meal
  • ¼ cup gluten free flour, plus more for coating
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup corn (or any other vegetable, diced)
  • Bun, bread, or lettuce wrap for serving (optional)
  • Toppings of your choice (mayo, sriracha, lettuce, tomato, cheese etc)

      1. In a food processor, using the S-shaped chopping blade, pulse the onion and garlic into small pieces.
      2. Add all other ingredients, except the corn (or other vegetable), and process until mixed and to the texture you like.
      3. Scrape mixture into a mixing bowl, stir in corn, then divide into 6 sections.
      4. Place a small amount of flour on a plate.
      5. With each section of the mixture, work carefully to form a patty shape. Gently coat the patty in flour (work carefully, the burger are VERY soft)
      6. Once all patties are formed, fry them a few minutes on each side in an oiled non-stick skillet over medium heat. (I used a cast iron pan, but a non-stick should also work)
      7. Serve on a gluten free bun, toasted gluten free bread, or lettuce wrapped.
      NOTE: Works well with red beans also.

    Sunday, 15 March 2015

    Layer Cake Share - Frozen Theme Birthday Cake Ideas

    Today I thought I’d share a cake decorating idea. I made this one for my niece’s 5th birthday, as requested, in the style of the movie, Frozen.  The characters were from a game board I gave her as a gift.

    So I started out with a 4 layer chocolate cake.  I filled each layer with vanilla swiss meringue buttercream, and iced the outside in the same.  I tinted some of the icing with blue food gel from Wilton and then swirled it with white, mixing the two together a little bit where they met at the bottom of the cake.  

    I sprinkled the sides and tops with blue and white decorating sugar and snowflake sprinkles.

    For the top, I melted white chocolate wafers, tinted half of that with the same blue gel paste, and then spread them out on silicone baking sheets to let dry.  Then I used a pizza cutter to cut them in the shapes of ice shards and stuck them in on the top of the cake.

    I’d love to see pictures if you make something similar! 

    Tuesday, 3 March 2015

    Gluten Free Cinnamon Bun Donut

    Sometimes a dessert comes along that can make you forget about other desserts.  This is that dessert for me.  A soft and fluffy cake donut - cinnamon bun style.

    I wish they would have lasted long enough for me to go back and take another picture of the inside of this donut. The texture was wonderful. Soft cakey structure made light by pockets of air where the baking soda and buttermilk schemed together to get a nice high rise.

    Quick Tip: If you don’t have buttermilk in the fridge (I rarely do) combine milk with vinegar or lemon juice (1 cup milk with 1 tbsp vinegar/lemon juice) let sit for a few minutes, then use as directed in your recipe.  For this recipe – where I only use a ¼ cup, I just splashed some vinegar in my quarter cup measure, then topped with milk.

    When you make these, don’t be alarmed by how thick the batter is.

    To get the cinnamon bun flavor mix together melted butter, sugar and cinnamon.  Drizzle on top of the finished batter, then use a skewer (of knife or chopstick or toothpick – whatever’s handy for you) and swirl the mixture through the batter – but just a little bit. You don’t want to incorporate them fully, you just want a swirl of cinnamon throughout. (Actually, it’s your donut. If you want to fully incorporate, feel free.) 

    To complete the cinnamon bun effect here, I mixed icing sugar and milk together into a thick mixture and drizzled on top of the donuts.  I suspect a cream cheese icing would be great here as well.

    What is your favorite dessert?  Your favorite donut?

    Cinnamon Bun Donuts

    Soft Cake Donuts, with cinnamon swirl and icing drizzle

    Yield: 6-8

    Preparation time: 5min

    Cook time: 25min

    • 1 cup almond meal
    • 100 g Gluten Free Flour Mix
    • ½ teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • ¼ teaspoon salt
    • 57 g (1/4 cup) butter, melted and cooled
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 3 large eggs
    • ½ cup sugar
    • ¼ cup buttermilk
      • For the Swirl
    • 2 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
    • 2 tablespoon sugar
    • ½ tablespoon cinnamon
      • For the Icing
    • 6 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
    • 2 tablespoons milk
        1.Mix together the dry ingredients for the donuts in a medium mixing bowl.
        2.In a separate bowl, mix together wet ingredients
        3.Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients, stir until combined. Batter will be very thick.
        4.Melt the second amount of butter for the swirl, cool it a bit, and then mix in the sugar and cinnamon.
        5.Pour butter mixture on top of the batter and swirl with a skewer – but only mix in a little to marble the two mixtures together.
        6.Transfer batter to piping bag with no tip.
        7.Pipe into a greased donut tray. I made 6 large donuts, but 7 or 8 would probably be better.
        8.Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until skewer comes out without wet batter on.
        10.Mix together ingredients for icing. Using a spoon or fork, drizzle icing over donuts on a cooling rack. Serve.
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