So sorry I haven’t blogged in a bit. Got a busy week coming up, full of blogging, recipes and fun around here. We are entering the last week of school, two grandma’s visiting, three days of the girls first theatrical performance and so much more! Stay tuned and have your ovens on!
Archive for May, 2010
About two weeks ago I got a bag of Organic Blue Cornmeal (Gluten-Free) Pancake and Waffle Mix from Cowgirl Granola. I waited until just the right occasion to mix it up. Sunday morning, day after a farmer’s market, with thick slices of Applewood Smoked Bacon, I did the honors. I fired up my deluxe waffle iron with has those small holes, as I do not like the big Belgian waffle grid, and waited for the ready-beep. When it came I ladled in the slightly blue mixture studded with local pecans. Waited a few minutes and beep again-waffle is done. Brown and so nicely crispy. Butter, syrup and into the mouth. Absolutely divine. Daddy and GF Baby couldn’t get enough. I had one little half-waffle left over and I brought it with us on a trip to the flea market. GF baby ate the waffle for snack with no syrup, no butter, just plain. That’s how good they are.
Order you mix today at Cowgirl Granola. You’ll be happy you did y’all!
I will be bringing my pound cake wares to the New Braunfels Farmers Market tomorrow. It is a great market with music, places to sit and eat, veggies, palettas, crafters, herbs, Cowgirl Granola and me Poundcake Lady-Delicious and Gluten-free. Come join in the fun, pick up a six-pack of pound cake minis and enjoy a gorgeous market.
Use this on top of muffins, pies, cobblers, crumbles, crisps and whatever else you can think of!
1 1/3 c. My GF Flour Mix
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. oil (whatever you want, even coconut)
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla
sprinkle of salt
Mix all dry, mix all wet. Dump wet into dry and mix with your whisk, making crumb chunks as you mix. If you need to store, pour into a ziplock bag and keep in the freezer.
Ok here’s a quick recipe for some awesome week-end muffins. You can make them Saturday and love them so much you make them again on Sunday! You can make them all kinds of flavors-I love them full of fruit.
Awesome Berry Muffins, Makes 12:
Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees, line 12 muffin holders with cupcake papers.
1 1/2 c. My GF Flour Mix
3/4 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1T. baking powder
1/2. tsp. xanthan gum
1/3 c. oil (any kind you want)
3/4 c. liquid (anything you want milk, water, soy milk, rice milk etc.)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 T. My GF Flour Mix (for dusting fruit)
1 1/2 c. Berries (raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, cherries, etc.)
1 batch of Streusel (next post)
Measure all dry ingredients and mix together. Measure all wet ingredients and mix together. Dump all the liquid into the dry and mix. Take your fruit (if using frozen fruit, keep it frozen don’t defrost), dust it with the 1 T. Flour and a sprinkle of cinnamon if you wish. Fold fruit into muffin batter. Scoop into muffin cups filling almost to the top. Top off with a sprinkle of Streusel. Bake in center of the oven for about 15-20 minutes. Eat hot, warm, cool. They won’t last long!
I buy a lot of GF products from the grocery store. I buy them once, try them, and that’s usually the last time it happens. Why do I buy? I can cook all my own food, I certainly don’t need convenience foods, but I like to test things out to see how good they are. I like to see how other pastry chef’s are doing in creating good GF goodies.
I got in touch with Glow Gluten Free, who I found out about through the magic of Twitter. I got all four flavors of their cookies. Several days later there was a knock on the door and the postman handed me a box. I yelled, “Cookies have arrived” and a flurry of activity ensued at my house. We all gathered in the kitchen hovering over the box. The box was opened and WOW-look at the packaging! Cool packaging, just enough to cover the product and not enough to be environmentally wasteful. Gorgeous colors, nicely done logo, great photography-just WOW! Because of the packaging I was excited to eat the product.
Crinkling of cellophane from inside the box. Crunching and munching all around the kitchen. Just so you know, of the five of us in my household, 3 are not GF, two are GF (me and the baby). Two non-GF pre-teens loved the Double Chocolate. Went around with crumbs in the corner of their mouths for the rest of the day. Non-GF husband loved the Gingersnaps. Baby-Double Choc and Gingersnaps. Me-(in order) Double Choc, Gingersnaps, Choc Chip, Snickerdoodle.
Quite frankly I was surprised at their awesomeness. Crunchy cookies on the first day. I did an experiment and left them open for several days. First of all , they got a little soft which was delicious too. Second of all, they did not get stale and gross! After several days open they were still flavorful and delicious. That is amazing news!
Bottom line: buy these cookies! They taste good, smell good, look good and have a small ingredient list. They are GF/CF and all-natural. Please go to their website to find out which retailers carry Glow Gluten Free! Note to Texas: there is only 1 place in Texas where these are carried! Ask you local stores to carry these, you won’t be sorry!
I was having coffee with a friend this week and we were discussing the techniques of baking gluten-free. I was telling her that usually already gluten-free recipes don’t work for me. I talked about how I have taken my old glutened recipes and then converted them. She looked at me and said that I was lucky because I knew how to cook from before becoming gluten-free, but that a lot of people didn’t start cooking and baking until after they got diagnosed. We talked about the lack of available prepared GF food and how even if there was more available, that we probably couldn’t afford it!
That brings me to the school of pie crust. My grandma was a pie-er. She used lard. My mom was a cake-er. She made some pie crusts, bought some pie crusts. She used Crisco. I’m a cake-er. I bought my pie crusts. Fast forward a few years. I married a pie-er, so I really had to come to terms with GF pie crusts. The first recipe had eggs. Then a friend of mine needed eggless. So a new recipe was created. Then someone needed dairy-free. Then someone needed soy-free. And on and on. You get the picture. The recipe I am going to give is flexible enough to accommodate all of these needs.
If you were a pie-er before going GF and you made all those fancy flaky pie crusts, throw your technique pretty much out the window. You need to be prepared, because the technique I’m going to share will probably horrify you. For all you new pie converts: Get you rolling pins ready and be prepared for pies, quiches, galettes and whatever else you might want to make with some pie crust dough.
About pie crust: Usually with a gluten pie crust, you have to “cut” the fat into the crust gradually by hand to achieve flakiness. The function of this is to break up the fat, coat it with flour to trap it into being flaky. And by not working it heavily or using a mixer, you do not activate the gluten to start producing it’s tough gluten-strands. If you activate the gluten, you will have a very tough pie crust.
Because this is gluten-free, we don’t have to worry about activating gluten-strands! We do want to coat the fat with flour to achieve flakiness, but our toughness will come with not enough fat and not enough mixing, versus the other way around!
Fearless GF Pie Crust
Ingredients, Makes 2-3 nine-inch, deep dish crusts:
2 1/2 c. My GF Flour Mix (click here to see recipe)
2T. granulated sugar (add another 1T. if you are making a sweet pie)
1 t. xanthan gum
1/2 c. butter*
1/2 c. shortening **
1/2 c. water with lots of ice cubes in it.
*you may use all shortening if you wish
**you may use palm shortening also for this if you need to avoid soy. You can use the palm for both the shortening and butter this recipe calls for. If you do, the crust will be very pale and more delicate to work with.
If it doesn’t look like that quite yet, whirl for another minute or so. Next, we are going to add the water. This is important: You are not going to add very much water! Although you’ve chilled down quite a bit of water, you are only going to use several teaspoons of it. Start the mixer on a slow speed and gradually pour in the water at a very slow stream. What you are looking for is for the dough to come together in one clump. One it has clumped, stop pouring the water! You do not want it gummy and pasty looking.
Now sprinkle your counter-top with some GF flour mix. Put the dough onto the counter and flatten it, fold it in half, and flatten it again with your hands. Next you can divide it ito 2-3 equal pieces, depending on what you are making.
Now, you can roll out the dough now. Or you can chill it for 15-20 minutes. It works either way. The next thing we are going to do is a trick that I like to use to get the crust into the pan, because GF pie dough can be fragile. Do you have one of those thin, clear, very flexible cutting boards? If you don’t, zip down to the dollar store and get a pack of them. They are a miracle! Take your plastic board and dust it with flour mix. Place your dough in the center of your board and dust the top with flour mix. Commence with the roll-out. When you need to, rotate the board to get a different angle on rolling out the crust. Check and make sure that the crust is not sticking to the bottom of the board. If it is, throw a little more flour dust under it.
Gently slide your hand under the board. Take your pan, place it in the center of your rolled out crust being careful not to press down. Keep one hand under the board and one lightly on top of the pan and FLIP. You will find the dough in the pan and the board ready to slide right off the top. Sometimes a lonely butter chunk may have stuck a bit. That’s ok, just patch it with your finger.
Now it is time to crimp the edges. Start by taking all the crust hanging off the edges and rolling it back towards the pan so you end up with a tall ring around the edge of the pan. If it’s uneven, you can take parts where there is more dough and move it to the part where there is less dough. Start crimping by making a “v” with the left hand, placing it near the crust and with the right hand, push your thumb out from the inside into the center of the “v”.
Now you have pie crust. Important note: if you crust doesn’t look like this the first time around-keep practicing. I have rolled out hundreds and hundreds of crusts over the years and I can do it in my sleep so basically, I’ve done this before.
You can do a few things with your crust. Fill it now, bake it eat it. Wrap it and put it in the fridge till later. Blind bake-it (we’ll talk about that another time). Or wrap it really well and freeze it as it will keep several months in the freezer if wrapped well.
It’s ALIVE! No, I mean it’s gone “LIVE”. Poundcakelady.com website is up and running and full of pound cakes to order for yourselves and everyone else that could possibly need a pound cake. Make my day-order away! The first 5 people that order and use coupon code “lovegfcake” will receive free priority shipping on their cakes! Make me busy!