Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Waffle Calzones

So, what do you do in the summer when you want pizza, but you really don't want to turn on the oven? (Or in my case, you can't because your oven is out of commission.) You pull out your waffle iron, of course! I used my calzone recipe without modification, other than how it was cooked.

And I actually like the texture better of these waffles, the iron gives it a perfect crust! And they are really fun for kids!

Waffle Calzones
1 1/4 cup warm water
1 tablespoon fast-rising yeast
1 tablespoon honey (or agave)
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
3 cups GF flour blend
1 teaspoon salt
1/4-1/2 cup additional warm water
Pizza Sauce
Pizza Toppings (pepperoni, cheese (daiya cheese), Canadian bacon, veggies, etc)

Preheat waffle iron (I set mine to the highest setting, but it may be because I have a cheap crappy waffle iron). In a small bowl mix together water, yeast, honey, oil, and vinegar.  Let sit for 5 minutes to proof.

In a stand mixer, combine flour and salt.  Add in the yeast mixture and mix on low until combined.

Add in enough additional water to make the dough sticky but stay together as a ball.  This won't be the typical gluten-free bread dough which is a thick, sticky batter.  It's does actually resemble regular bread dough, but is quite a bit sticky. Some days I don't need to add anything, other days I could add up to a 1/4 cup to get the right consistency.

Once the consistency is right, mix it on high speed for 3-5 minutes.

Place the dough on parchment paper that has been sprinkled with GF flour. Divide the dough into 4 equal portions and form each into a ball. Roll out each ball into a circle about 1/8" thick and about 9-10" in diameter. (note: I made the calzones one at a time, because it meant moving that dough, just once)

Top one half of the dough with a little pizza sauce and toppings of your choice, making sure to leave space around the edges to seal it.

Fold the dough over and press the edges together.

Transfer the prepared calzone to the greased waffle iron and cook for ~8 minutes or until the calzone is cooked through (cook times will very much depend on your waffle iron). Prepare the next calzone, while the first is cooking.

Serve with additional pizza sauce, or ranch in my families case.

Makes 4 large calzones (which was just enough for 2 adults and 2 hungry little boys).

This post was shared on Allergy Friendly WednesdaysWaste Not Want Not Wednesdays, and Gluten Free Fridays.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Allergy Friendly Bread (i.e. free of the top 8 allergens and more!)

I have my favorite bread recipes that I utilize frequently in my house...my Teff Sandwich Bread is my go to bread for sandwiches and such, I like my Sorghum Millet Bread for Sunday dinner rolls.  But when a friend approached me about finding a bread that would meet their families needs, I realized I needed to add a recipe that would help families that have several allergies, not just a few like our family.

My friend's little boy has an allergy list that is longer than I can list, but it includes wheat, eggs, soy, dairy, rice, corn, nuts, seeds, and much more. My friend is still nursing her son, so she doesn't eat anything on his allergen list either, and was trying to find some foods that they could both enjoy. So I set out to make them some bread.  The result ended up being a slight modification to my sorghum millet bread and it turned out fantastic.  It does go stale quickly, like most homemade gluten free breads, but can easily be brought back to life by toasting or microwaving for a few seconds.

This recipe isn't vegan, because of the honey and the gelatin, but probably could be made vegan by subbing in agave or maple syrup for the honey and agar powder for the gelatin.  I haven't tested the agar powder, so adjustments may need to be made to give the texture you want.

Just a note, when proofing the yeast, mix all of the wet ingredients together making sure to dissolve the yeast in the water. It should look like this after it has proofed for a few minutes:

The bread comes out soft and chewy, and most importantly bendable and sturdy...so it can hold up to plenty of sandwich toppings!

Allergy Friendly Sandwich Bread
1 1/4 cup warm water
1 tablespoon yeast
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon vinegar
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/4 cup millet flour
2/3 cup potato starch
2/3 cup tapioca starch
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons xanthan gum or guar gum
2 teaspoons (or one packet) unflavored gelatin

In a small bowl mix together water, yeast, honey, oil, and vinegar.  Let sit for 3-5 minutes or until yeast is dissolved and beginning to proof.

In a mixing bowl, stir together dry ingredients.  Add the yeast mixture to the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until combined.  Add in the egg whites.  Once combined, mix on high speed for 3-5 minutes.

Grease a medium (~8"x4") loaf pan. Pour the batter into the pan, smooth the top with wet fingers or a wet spatula. Cover and let rise in a warm, humid environment for 20 minutes. (If you are like me and live in a dry, cold environment, do the following:  heat a very wet tea towel in the microwave until it is piping hot (I microwave mine for 2 minutes).  Quickly open the microwave, place the loaf of bread inside and place the hot towel on top and shut the microwave again.  It should stay warm and moist in there for 20 minutes.

As the bread is rising, preheat the oven to 400F.

Bake for 50-60 minutes, covering with aluminum foil after the first 10 minutes.  After 50 minutes, check the internal temperature of the bread.  It is done when it reaches ~205F.

The bread will last a couple of days on the counter/in the fridge.  If you don't plan on eating it that fast, slice it and freeze it.

This post was shared on Allergy-Free WednesdaysWaste Not Want Not Wednesdays, and Gluten Free Fridays.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Butterscotch Cake

Sorry, I'm not posting very much any more.  I'm a very busy working mom and have been juggling a lot, so this blog has been put on the back burner.  I think about posting all the time, but just haven't gotten around to it.

Back in January I made a cake for my friend's daughter's 17th birthday party.  She requested a gold cake (don't do a gold cake, it makes it expensive) with a black bow.  And she wanted a caramel cake...well, I haven't ever made a caramel cake from scratch, so I did some searching and found some descent recipes, I decided on trying this butterscotch one and adapting it fit our needs. It is moist and dense and has a fantastic flavor.

Sorry, I don't have a pic of the actual cake, since this one was someone else and all the test cakes were devoured before pictures were taken...if you want to make a sequin cake this is the better tutorial than I would ever be able to give.

Old-fashioned Butterscotch Cake

2 large eggs, at room temp and separated (yolks in a small bowl, egg white in a mixing bowl)
2 1/2 cups GF flour blend
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups dairy-free milk
3/4 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350F and grease and flour 3 9-inch cake pans and set aside.

Sift together the flour blend, baking powder, and salt.  Add in the brown sugar and make sure there are no large clumps of brown sugar.

Whip the egg whites to soft peaks using a stand mixer, then with mixer running, slowly add the 1/4 cup sugar to the eggs and continue to whip until they are stiff peaks.

Add the egg yolks, milk, oil, and vanilla to the flour mixture.  Mix by hand until combined.  Fold in the egg whites and divide the batter among the 3 cake pans.  Bake 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Top with your choice of frosting (I used my buttercream recipe with extra vanilla added).

This post was shared on Allergy Free Wednesday, Gluten Free Wednesday, and Waste Not Want Not Wednesday.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Top 10 recipes of 2014

Happy New Year, everyone!  I'm sorry I've been absent.  I think about the blog all the time, and honestly go to the blog all the time, while I'm cooking.  I really do use the recipes I share. :)  I thought I'd do a fun post to review the past year and share the top 10 recipes in terms of page views.

So here they are:

Number 10: Persimmon Muffins

Number 6: Corn-Free Dogs

 Number 3: Chocolate Chip Cookies

And the number 1 recipe on the site for 2014 was my Cinnamon Rolls!

This post was shared on Allergy Free WednesdayWaste Not Want Not Wednesday, and Gluten Free Friday.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Persimmon Muffins

I'm sorry, once again, for not posting very often.  Life gets busy and takes unexpected turns.  My life took one of those turns a couple of weeks ago, when my boys and I were in a horrible car accident on our way to school.  We were very blessed and protected, and were able to come out of it with just cuts, bumps, and bruises.  What people don't realize when you go through something like that and just narrowly escape with your lives, is the emotional trauma you face.  Everyone has gone on with their lives, and because we all are doing well, I think they all assume we are emotionally fine, too. Emotionally, it's been a roller coaster ride, I'm so grateful I have both of my boys alive and well, but every time I see a car wreck like mine on the news in which someone is killed or critically injured (which happens at least a few times a week) I spin into those what if questions, and sorrow for the family that just went through the wreck, guilt that we were okay and they weren't...I know it's confusing and it's hard to explain, but it's what has been consuming me lately.  I know most of you won't even read this, you've already scrolled down to the recipe, because that's why you came to this page.  But the few of you that actually take the few minutes to read my message, please understand that I enjoy my blog, but it's taken a backseat to life right now.  I'm with my family and I'm valuing my time with them a little bit more, and you should do the same.  With that said, it's Thanksgiving time, right?  How about a new fall recipe to have at your Thanksgiving feast (or for breakfast that morning, or any other time, really)?

These Persimmon muffins are like little coffee cakes, they are so delicious with just the right amount of spices added.  They really are the perfect fall treat.  I had a bunch of persimmons to work with this year and have enjoyed baking with them. I used the Fuyu persimmon in the recipe.  I found it's easiest to cut the persimmons in half, then scoop out the flesh, inside of trying to peel it.  Then it is quick work to puree them for this recipe.

Persimmon Muffins
1/2 cup palm oil shortening
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 3/4 cup persimmon puree
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 325F, and lightly grease or line muffin tins.

Cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add eggs, mixing well after each one.  Add the persimmon puree and mix until well blended.

In a separate bowl, combine remaining ingredients.  Gradually add the flour mixture to the persimmon mixture and stir until combined.

Scoop into muffin tins, and top with struesel (recipe below) and bake 30 minutes. 

This can also be made into a bread loaf, just use a standard bread pan (9x5") and bake for 1 hour.

Streusel Topping
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup dairy-free margarine
1/2 tablespoon cinnamon

combine together and cut in margarine until it's well combined and forms a crumbly topping. Sprinkle on top of muffins before baking.

This post was shared on Allergy Free Wednesday and Gluten Free Wednesday.