Friday, June 25

A Dairy-Free Summer Treat...Blackberry Cobbler

There is such a wonderful gluten-free blogger community.  I have been so encouraged and even comforted through the experiences they have shared.  Not only that, but the recipes posted on many of these blogs are gorgeous and delicious! I was just recently inspired by this  month's Go Ahead Honey, It's Gluten-Free theme to finally jump in and join.  I have admired from a far and now it's time to give back to the lovely men and women who have shared so much with me.
The host,  Zoe from Z's Cup of Tea, has asked for dairy-free delights.  The assortment of recipes will be published on her blog June 3oth.  I am posting my recipe a bit early, but on June 30th the rest will be up for you to try.  On or after that date follow this link to see the other recipes bloggers have contributed:

I recently made my dad a sweet peach cobbler for Father's day and it renewed my love of cobblers.  As you have read...I am thoroughly enjoying this summer's berry season.  Since I have two lovely little bundles of blackberries just waiting for me in the fridge, I decided to create a recipe for a few, personal blackberry cobblers :).  Sweet and lovely to look at, these dairy-free delights are perfect for a light summer dessert.  Enjoy!

{Blackberry Cobbler}

~yields 4 ramekins (very small baking bowls)

1/2 c Gluten-Free Oats
1/2 c Garbanzo Bean/Chickpea Flour
1/4 c Potato Starch
1/4 c Sucant
1/2 tsp Xanthan Gum
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1/4 tsp Cinnamon
2 tbsp Organic Palm Oil Shortening

1/2 c Vanilla Rice Milk
1/2 tsp Cider Vinegar

16oz Fresh Blackberries
1 tbsp Potato Starch
1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1/4 c Agave Nectar + a little to drizzle on top 

In a small bowl combine the first, seven dry ingredients.  In another small bowl combine the Rice Milk and the Cider Vinegar.  Set these bowls aside.  
Mix the Potato Starch, Vanilla and Agave in a new bowl.  
Place Blackberries in a small sauce pan. Turn heat on Medium-High and pour the mixture over it.  Stir occasionally.  Once bubbling, reduce to Medium-Low and eventually simmer at Low heat.  It should thicken into a sauce.
Add the Palm Oil Shortening to the dry ingredients you set aside and chop/blend with a fork to create a slightly chunky consistency.  Pour in the Rice Milk/Vinegar liquid and mix.  It should become thick as you mix.  

Place the 4 Ramekins onto a baking sheet. 
Remove the Blackberries/sauce from heat and pour into the 4 Ramekins.  Scoop a heading tbsp of the dough into each of the Ramekins.  Make sure to cover the Berry mixture completely.  
Lightly drizzle each with Agave and place in oven. 

Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes (depending on your oven) until the top is golden  brown and the Berry mixture is boiling.  Combine with a scoop of dairy-free vanilla ice cream (like Coconut Bliss) and serve :).  

I loved the process of creating this recipe. I hope you will enjoy its results.  
It's perfect for a small party or dessert for two.  These personal cobblers are a delightful dessert meant to be savored outside in the warm summer air with close friends and family around.  

Tuesday, June 22

Double Almond Coconut Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies...

Tonight I decided to try Elana's new cookie recipe.  I saw it on her blog a few days ago and have been waiting for an opportunity to bake them.   The perfect chance came today when I was reminded of my weekly girls' night.  I decided our little party would be the perfect setting for the introduction of a new, delicious cookie batch :).

Elana's Double Almond Dark Chocolate Chip cookie recipe looked simple and promising from the start. At first glance I could eat all the ingredients without any substitutions, which is very rare for me.  I altered the measurements a bit, used Almond meal instead of flour and added unsweetened coconut.  Despite these adjustments, I still stayed surprisingly true to the original recipe.   I truly appreciate Elana's recipes.  I can always rely on her to put together fabulous creations, write clearly and included detailed instructions.  In light of my appreciation, I dedicate this  attempt to you dear Elana :).  Thank you for bringing such wonderful almond recipes to your readers.

Elana's Double Almond Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies...with coconut :)

~Yields 16-20 Cookies

2 3/4 c of Almond Meal
1/2 tsp Sea Salt
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1 tbsp + 1/4 tsp Vanilla Extract
1/2 c of Grapeseed Oil
1/2 c of Agave Nectar

1/4 c of unsweetened Coconut
1/2 c of chopped 70% Cacao Dark Chocolate Bar
1/2 c of sliced Almonds

Combine the three, top dry ingredients in a large bowl and the wet in a medium bowl.  Pour the wet into the dry and mix well, until it thickens.  Chop up the Chocolate Bar and keep the pieces relatively chunky.  Fold the Coconut, Chocolate pieces and sliced Almonds into the dough.  Scoop a tbsp of dough onto a greased cookie sheet and press it into shape with the heel of your hand.  Bake for 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees until golden brown.  Let them cool and enjoy with your favorite glass of milk...Almond milk perhaps, to continue the theme ;).

Sunday, June 20

These are a few of my favorite things...

Berries, Oats and Sunny Mornings....these are three ingredients that I just LOVE.  They make me want to sing all morning long.  That's of course how I thought of the title :).  I can't avoid mentioning the classic Sound of Music when writing about my favorite things.  If you have no idea what I am talking about, please stop what you are doing and rent or buy the movie.  It's worth your time :).

On this lovely sunny morning I decided to combine my favorites into a delicious recipe.  I wanted something slightly sweet, so I decided to try blueberry, raspberry oat waffles.  Yesterday I went a little crazy at the local, health food store.  Since berries are in season, they're well priced and easy to find.   Sooo I came home with quite an assortment of blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and of course strawberries.  Hence, the double berry recipe :).  I hope you can savor a lovely morning waffle and join in my celebration of the sweet, summer berry season!

Friday, June 18

Summer Breakfast Treat...Berry Scone

I recently made a trip to a bookstore, a dangerous endeavor if I do not have large amounts of free time to spend there, but I had a giftcard.... ;) 
I am a book lover at heart.  My favorite section, as you can imagine, is the cookbook corner. I could sit there for hours parusing through various vegetarian, raw, gluten-free, sugar-free or exotic cookbooks.  You can usually find me sitting in the conveinietly located chair (they must know I am coming!) with a few  relatively high stacks of books around my feet.   I just love reading about new recipes and learning from other chefs.  Through this method I had the treat of discovering a little cookbook treasure.  I happened upon Leslie Hammond and Lynne Marie Rominger's book Allergy Proof Recipes For Kids.  This little book is full of great simple and easy to follow recipes.  It met my expectations by including ingredients that are inexpensive and easy to find.  The photography was also very appealing and inspiring.  I took this present to myself home and could not wait to try a few of the recipes! Well, today I have the results of one.  
While I did alter it quite a bit, I still would like to give this cookbook a mention and credit it for the original thought behind my recipe today.  So thank you Leslie and Lynne! :)

I choose to create Berry Scones. I am a fanatic tea drinker and scones fit well with my morning peppermint tea, so I had to try! It took two rounds to perfect this final recipe.  I hope you find it easy to repeat and enjoy. :)

Summer Scone
~makes about 8-10 
1/4 c fine Sugar
1 c   Applesauce
1 tbsp Ghee (can be found at Henry's, Jimbo's, Whole Foods and any other heath food store)
1 tsp Xanthan Gum                                        
2 tsp Baking Powder 
Dash of Salt
Dash of Cinnamon                             
1 tsp Vanilla
1 1/2 c Brown Rice Flour
1/2 c Arrowroot Starch or Tapioca Flour (I tried both and prefer the taste of Arrowroot, but both work well)
1/2 c  Almond or Rice Milk                                                      
1 c  frozen berries (Blueberries, Raspberries, Blackberries)
Raw Sugar to sprinkle
1/2 tbsp melted Ghee

To begin place all the ingredients except the Berries, Raw Sugar and extra Ghee, in a medium size bowl and mixed on low.  It will become gooey, but that is just the effect of the Xanthan Gum.  Take a rubber spatula and drop balls of the dough on a  well greased baking sheet.  They should not spread, but stay in a small textured ball.  Now take the Berries one at a time and fold them into each scone, varying the Berries so there is a nice blend mixed in each of  the scones.  Brush the scones with the 1/2 tbsp of melted Ghee. 

For a final flourish, sprinkle the scones with the raw sugar.  Feel free to take a bow and then pop them into your oven at 375 degrees.  Bake for 30 minutes (depends on your oven).  

They should come out with a lovely golden finish.  Cool and enjoy with your favorite cup of tea or coffee. :)

Tuesday, June 15

A Southwestern Chilisoup....

It's summer and Mexican food is prevalent, not that it's really rare any other time, but summer seems to inspire the taste buds in a southern direction for me.  I decided to whip up a spicy batch of southwestern style soup or as I like to term it, a light chili.  A quick meal that calls for sides of salty corn chips, guacamole and perhaps a little margarita...


2 cups of Gluten-Free Chicken Broth
2 cups of organic Kidney Beans
2 cups of organic Black Beans
2 cups of organic diced Tomatoes (if you want more of a kick I added a bit of organic green chiles)
2 cups of organic roasted Corn
2 cups of water + juices from all the above
2 large Chicken breasts
1 large organic zucchini


Olive oil
Fresh crushed Garlic
Sea Salt
Pepper (white and black)

To begin I sauteed the chicken breasts in olive oil and seasoned them with a sprinkle of Paprika, Oregano, Sea Salt, Black Pepper and Cumin.  Keep flipping and rotating breasts until almost cooked through.  While cooking, wash Zucchini and cut long ways, then dice into cubes.  Take Chicken out of pan and cut up into smaller pieces.  Using the same pan drizzle more olive oil and toss Zucchini around until slightly blackened (almost a grilled look).

In a large pot pour in all the ingredients, including the chicken and zucchini when done.  Stir on medium high for about 10 minutes. Season to taste with more of the above seasonings, including the White Pepper and crushed Garlic.

Let it simmer for about 10-15minutes on low heat.  Serve with a sprinkle of "safe" cheese, broken corn chips or perhaps torn fresh corn tortillas on top.  Don't forget the side of guac or salsa and you will thank me for a feisty fiesta in your mouth.
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