Saturday, February 27

Wintery Saturday Night

It's nine o'clock and I am snugly tucked into a cushy armchair, literally, body-wrapped in two down blankets and covered with multiple layers of clothing. I have been feeling a bit chilly of late and...I am thinking an electric blanket may be my next purchase. Observation: It seems I am drawn to this writing space when the weather has forced me indoors....and under many blankets! Yes, I agree. I would never survive a Montana or Minnesota winter. I acknowledge my weakness and surrender myself to the inevitable, an addiction to San Diego weather.
As I complain, I remember the tragedies that have occurred today and feel, well, ungrateful and dramatic. So, that ends my sob story regarding temperatures...

On to more exciting, of course, haha what else!? I have had two recent success in the everything-free category, as I like to call it. A mouthwatering muffin and a scrumptious cookie were my latest accomplishments. The muffins were a fresh idea this morning as I was laying in bed listening to the rain. I knew I wanted to bake , but not spend hours in the kitchen. So, naturally, my first go-to was muffins! I LOVE blueberry muffins and am always in the mood for a warm, tasty one. As I was pondering this goodness, I realized my usual recipe needed something...OATS. Gluten-free oats make everything 110% better, guaranteed. This novelty led me to my cupboard to pull out the necessities...but the actual attempt would have to wait until after my morning walk.

My second recipe followed the outline of a few other gluten-free suggestions, but I made it my own. Basically, I can't eat peanuts. Therefore, as you can guess, peanut butter is out of the question...sad. Thank heavens someone was thinking of me (right?) when they invented sunflower butter! Yes, I do know about almond butter, but it really is so different you truly can't compare it with peanut butter. Back to wonderful sunflower butter....I use to love peanut butter cookies and dreamt about recreating the deliciousness with my new substitute. Well, the day finally arrived! As I baked the first batch I realized there was no flour involved, but I thought I should try to follow a recipe for once...bad choice. Fortunately, with a small addition of soroghum flour to the rest of the dough I was able to save the batch. Oh goodness, were they saved! They were for the actual recipes!

{Blueberry Oat Muffins}
3/4 c of Pamela's baking flour
3/4 c of gluten-free oats...I'm really liking Bob's Red Mill, surprisingly...
1 large egg or egg
1/4 c of warm water
1/4 c of maple syrup grade A
1 tsp of vanilla
And as much cinnamon as you can handle

I mixed it all with a wooden spoon and poured it into the
pre-sprayed muffin tins. Then I stuck the frozen blueberries many as each could hold! I prefer Trader Joe's frozen blueberries to any other brand. They seem to be the ripest and closest to fresh berries, without the short lifespan. Bake these goodies for 18min at 350 degrees and you will see them brown perfectly. Enjoy!

{The Sunflower Cookies}
1 c of sunflower butter
1 c of sugar (cane sugar or light brown sugar) or I will be trying agave next time...
1/2 c of flour..I used
2 tbsp of honey
2 eggs or
1 tsp bourbon vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
Sprinkle of sea salt
1/2 c of semi-sweet chocolate chips...Trader Joe's

Mix it all ( wet first, then add in the dry and chocolate chips) with a wooden spoon. Roll the dough into little balls and place on foiled cookie sheet. Use a flour-dipped fork to press a tic-
tac-toe pattern onto the cookies. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15min. Pull them out and let them cool. They will be fluffy at first, but will settle after a few minutes. Pair one with a glass of milk or a scoop of vanilla ice cream and your night will be complete.

Sweet rainy dreams everyone.


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