Sunday, April 13, 2008

Blueberry Muffin MIX!

I made my first packaged easy-prep mix last weekend. :-) It turned out REALLY well and even my picky husband liked the finished product.

One bag of mix makes 1 dozen muffins, and all the baker has to add is 3/4 cup natural (sugar free/unsweetened) apple sauce, 1/4 cup canola oil, 1/4 cup rice milk, and about 1 cup of strained canned blueberries (I used a little less because I had already used a couple spoonfuls in my pancakes that morning). This mix is: wheat-free, egg-free, dairy-free, soy-free, corn-free, nut-free, etc. :-) It is a really great universal allergen-free muffin mix.

If any of my friends would like to try this (or other future mixes), just write me an email and I'll send one off. If I don't know you, leave me a comment and I'll try to keep checking the comments on my *mix* posts frequently.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Dry baking mixes!

A friend suggested that I start making baking mixes so she could easily whip up some of my favorite creations. I went out and bought vanilla extract powder and some other replacers for some of my wet ingredients. I am pretty sure I will be able to re-design quite a few of my baked goods recipes into easy dry mixes that will be one-bowl and only need the basics added (water, rice milk, or apple juice... butter or oil... canned pumpkin, shredded veggies, or fruits). I am also currently working on some muffin "mixes". I have drawn up preliminary ideas for pumpkin, banana, apple streusel, and blueberry. It is too bad I can't eat blueberries or bananas. ;-)

Thursday, March 27, 2008

A new idea to experiment with...

After the chewy-factor of the cupcakes I made the other day, I have decided that base would work really well for STICKY BUNS! It just seems so perfect. I am going to try it out with some cinnamon and some orange sticky buns next week. I am VERY optimistic on this one! It is a little thin for a dough, so I'll probably have to do a cake pan or cupcake pan for the cooking vessel, but it should work out really well. :-D

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Orange Party Cupcakes

If you are like me and have family members who don't like much chocolate *gasp*... then this might be the cupcake for you/them.

Orange Cupcakes

1 1/3 C self-rising flour mixture
1 1/4 C sugar
1 tsp (extra) baking powder
1/2 C apple sauce
1/4 C canola oil

2 units egg replacer (I used 3 tsp ener-g)
1/2 C rice milk
2 Tbsp canola oil

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp orange extract
* 2 drops yellow and 1 drop red food coloring... just adds a slight color to look more "normal".

Mix flour, sugar, and baking powder in a large bowl. Wisk together egg replacer, rice milk, and 2 Tbsp canola oil in a small bowl.

Add "egg" mixture, apple sauce, remaining oil, vanilla, orange, and food coloring to the flour mixture and stir well.

Spoon into cupcake pan/shells (I used a 1/4 cup measuring cup and it turned out perfect). Makes 12 cupcakes.

Bake at 375F for 25 mins or until toothpick comes out clean...

Cool and frost with your favorite allergen-free frosting or make a simple whipped frosting yourself (powdered sugar, shortening, rice milk, and vanilla) if you are going no-soy.

** It might be a good sweet bread too if left unfrosted and the sugar reduced a little. The texture is a little chewy like a bread and not crumbly like most cupcakes. I'll work on that.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Decorating Easter cookies...

I made some of my sugar cookies and flavored some with lemon extract, some with cocoa powder, and some with soy nut butter! I even flavored the icings to match the colors. heh

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Very basic cookie dough base...

Sugar Cookies

1 1/2 cups GF flour mixture
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp egg replacer
1/4 tsp salt
2/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup dairy-free margarine
1/4 cup veg shortening
3 Tbsp agave nectar (or rice syrup, or just use 3/4 cup sugar total and up the rice milk to almost 1/3 cup )
1/4 cup rice milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
* 1/4 tsp cinnamon (optional)

Mix dry ingredients well in a large bowl. Cut in margarine and shortening until well blended. In a separate bowl mix together the vanilla, rice milk, and agave nectar and pour over dough mixture. Mix well. Either refrigerate and prepare like a refrigerator dough, or spoon out into very small dough balls onto an ungreased cookie sheet and press a little bit flat (but still fairly thick).

Bake at 350F for 8-12 mins (very soft - very crisp)

Chocolate Chip Cookie variation:

1 1/3 cups GF flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp egg replacer
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup margarine
3 Tbsp agave nectar
1/4 - 1/3 cup rice milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup dairy-free/vegan chocolate chips

Bake at 400F for 9-11 mins.

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookie variation:

1 1/4 cups GF flour
1/4 cup corn flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp egg replacer
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup margarine
2 Tbsp agave nectar
1/3 cup rice milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup dairy-free/vegan chocolate chips

Bake at 400F for 9-11 mins.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Fun with PIES!

I spent the morning baking pies!!!!

Jack will never eat any because I used some coconut milk, and he HATES coconut milk... but sometimes mom and dad just want PIE! ;-)

I used Jack allergen-safe Jell-O bake and serve pudding mixes cooked with 2 parts rice milk and one part coconut milk instead of cow's milk. Make sure to read the labels, because some have "modified food starch" which is a BIG no-no. Others have just corn-starch, and luckily Jack isn't allergic to corn like many allergic toddlers are.

I made one vanilla with banana slices (we are starting to reintroduce banana into MY diet to see if he is getting less sensitive to it, but he refuses to try any himself). I'll call it "banana coconut cream pie." The other pie was with chocolate pudding mix, so I'll call that one "chocolate coconut cream pie."

My basic pie crust is as follows:

For sweet pies:
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/3 cups gluten-free flour mixture (detailed in a previous entry)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup room temp allergen-free margarine
3 Tbsp veg shortening
1/4 cup water

For savory (pot pies, meat pies, etc.):
1/8 tsp paprika
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 1/4 cups gluten-free flour mixture
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup room temp allergen-free margarine
3 Tbsp veg shortening
1/4 cup water

Mix dry ingredients and cut in margarine and shortening until in very small dough chunks. Sprinkle water over the top and mix dough together with your hands.
I just press it into pie pans and stab a few small holes in the bottom to prevent bubbling up... or roll balls and press thin and round for small cookie sheet "pies" (I made "meat pies" with sausage, potatoes, and carrots last night for dinner). However, for rolling out into sheets, just flour the pin and surface with more GF flour mixture making sure to not over-dry the dough.
Bake at 400F for 12-15 mins or until done.

Then let cool and fill as directed... OR if you are cooking with a fruit filling or a baked-in filling, just bake as directed in most other pie recipes. The 12-15 minutes still seemed to apply for my "meat pies" since the filling I made for them was pre-cooked.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

not too sweet Pumpkin Muffins

Today I decided to revisit my breakfast muffin recipe and make them a little more mild, spongy, and bread-like. I ate 3 right away! lol

Pumpkin Muffins (revisited)

2 C rice flour
1/2 C potato starch
1/4 C tapioca flour
1/4 C buckwheat flour
1 tsp xanthan gum
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 C sugar
2 *units* egg replacer (I used 3 tsp ener-G powdered egg replacer)
1 Tbsp ground flax seed
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

2 C pumpkin
2/3 C canola oil
2/3 C apple juice

(raisins or nuts can also be added)

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Mix the dry ingredients well and then mix in the wet ingredient. Stir/mix until very well blended.

Portion into greased muffin tins.
Bake at 350 F for 25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

Makes approx. 18 muffins

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Raspberry Chocolate Mini Cupcakes

Ok.. I admit it. I have a SERIOUS sweet-tooth and am a total choco-holic!

Raspberry Chocolate Mini Cupcakes

1 C self-rising flour mixture (detailed in previous post)
2 Tbsp buckwheat flour
1/4 C cocoa
1 C sugar
1 *unit* egg replacer (I used 1 1/2tsp ener-G powdered egg replacer)
1 tsp baking soda

1/2 C applesauce
1/3 C canola oil
1/4 C rice milk
2 tsp raspberry extract
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Mix the dry ingredients well and then mix in the wet ingredient. Stir/mix until very well blended.

Grease mini muffin pan (or line with paper mini muffin cups) and fill the cups mostly full with the cake batter.

Place on the middle oven rack and back for 15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Makes 2 dozen super moist, not too strong, not toooo sweet, super fluffy mini cupcakes. (or one cake, 1 dozen cupcakes, etc...)

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

"White" bread...

Basic "White" Flat Bread

2 C self-rising flour mixture (see below)
1/3 C sugar
4 Tbsp applesauce
1/4 C canola oil or light olive oil
1/3 packet of gluten-free yeast
1 2/3 C rice milk
2-3 Tbsp apple juice (optional)
1/3 - 1/2 packet of fast acting gluten-free yeast

Warm up 1 2/3 C of rice milk to approx. 120-130 F. Mix in 1/3-1/2 of a packet of gluten-free fast-acting yeast.

Add all the other ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Add in about 1 C of the rice milk and yeast mixture and mix well. If the mixture seems thicker than a sticky cookie batter, add more milk mixture until it is a very wet dough bordering on a very thick batter.

Cover with a warm damp cloth and set aside in a warm place for about 20 minutes.
Spoon knead well and set aside covered for 10 more minutes. It won't rise very much, but it will gather a few little air pockets with each rise. The yeast ends up being 75% for taste and only 25% for texture.

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Grease a small sheet cake pan or small bordered cookie pan.

Use a greased spatula to spread the dough gently onto the well-greased pan. Coat your hands in olive oil and gently press out the surface until it is even and against the edges. Cover again and let rest in a warm place for 15-20 more minutes.

Place into the preheated 350 F oven in the middle rack for about 15 minutes. The top will not brown, but it will be springy and fairly firm. The edges will start to turn golden though.

turned upside-down:Remove and let cool. Use a thin spatula to separate the bread from the edges of the pan and work under it to make sure it is free from the pan (or if using a flexible acrylic pan, you won't have these issues). Then flip the bread and let air out for a couple minutes upside-down. Let cool completely and cut into sandwich bread size slices. Either use within 24 hours or freeze until needed. :-)

My husband even likes this bread replacement and he can eat the real thing! We think it is most similar to plain bagels in taste and texture, and would be great toasted with some jam or for kid's sandwiches. Enjoy!


Basic Gluten-Free Flour Mix (from

2 cups rice flour
2/3 cup potato starch
1/3 cup tapioca starch
1 teaspoon xanthan gum

Self-Rising Flour Mix (from

2 cups gluten-free flour mix
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

Sunday, January 27, 2008

"Pound Cake"

This recipe is in honor of my husband who doesn't like chocolate! Such blasphemy... but, I guess a good white cake base is important for other future recipes as well. ;-)

"Pound Cake"

1 1/4 C rice flour
1/2 C potato starch
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 1/4 C sugar
2 *units* egg replacer (depends on the brand of egg replacer. 1 unit = the amount needed to equal one egg)

* approx. 1/2 to 2/3 C apple sauce
2/3 C canola oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp apple juice
* enough rice milk to get desirable batter consistency. Fairly thick but easily spreadable, and thin enough to shake out the bubbles and level in a sheet cake pan.
Mix dry ingredients well. Add wet ingredients. Mix until smooth.
Spread out onto greased sheet cake pan. Something like those larger tart molds would be super cute too for a fruit-topped dessert!
Bake at 350 F for about 20 minutes. I finished it off with 2 minutes on low broil to get more of a "skin" on the top. However, that was just for aesthetics and is not needed. :-)

This makes a very basic, sturdy, and very versatile, white cake. You can also add your favorite flavored extracts for a number of other flavor twists.
* I wasn't really measuring closely when I was playing around with this one, so some of the ingredients are approximations. I will recreate it in a few weeks and write down the specific amounts (and add a comment here). The non-exact amounts are noted though.

This is how I store my baked goods (I then freeze them and thaw at room temperature as needed/desired).

Buckwheat Pancakes

Buckwheat Pancakes

1/2 C rice flour
1/4 C buckwheat flour
1/4 C potato starch
1/4 tsp xanthan gum
1/4 C sugar
1 tsp baking powder (corn starch-free if corn is a problem)
1/2 - 1 tsp salt (1 for cooking in just veg oil, 1/2 if you are using a salted margarine)
1 tsp ground flax (optional)
dash or two of cinnamon

Mix the dry ingredients well and mix in rice milk (or your preferred milk substitute) until the batter is a smooth pancake batter consistency

This would be a very easy dry mix to make in bulk ahead of time and store in the freezer. Then just add milk and cook the desired amount.

Silver dollar pancakes for Jack:

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Deep frying fun...

Tonight I made battered fried cod and used the batter to also fry up some halved crimini mushroom tops, zucchini slices, Chinese eggplant slices, and thin-sliced squash.

My approx. batter recipe:

1 1/4 C flour mixture (3/4 C rice flour, 1/4 C potato starch, 1/4 C corn flour 1/2 tsp xanthan gum)
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp fine-ground pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
mix well and add enough seltzer water to make a smooth consistency similar to a fairly thin pancake batter

1/2 C potato starch too coat everything before dipping in the batter

enough canola oil to cover 2 inches in a pan or wok

It took a couple test fries to get my oil the right temperature and my batter the right consistency. If you're worried about it being too thin, just start with it on the thicker side and add more seltzer water until things work out the way you like them. :-) I preferred the batter thin and the oil super-hot. It made for the nice crispy texture and not too much oil absorption.

My favorites were the mushrooms and eggplant.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

"Squashed Potatoes"

That is what my husband calls them at least...

Our mashed potato solution:

Really it is just 2-3 parts potato to 1 part butternut squash (helps with moisture and a good way to sneak in some veggies/fiber). Cut into cubes and boiled just as if you were making normal mashed potatoes. Boil until very soft, and strain off most of the water. Leave enough to keep things moist after mashing (it may be more than you expect at first).
I add 1-2 bullion cubes (just some salt and garlic powder would be good for vegans), olive oil, and a little ground pepper. Mash mash mash...

This is one of Jack's favorite side dishes or a great late afternoon snack. It reheats much better than normal mashed potatoes too.

Quinoa pasta...

Today for lunch Jack and I had rainbow quinoa pasta with a butternut squash sauce. I had never tried quinoa pasta before, but I had heard good things. I didn't care for it too much. I prefer the rice pastas out there, but Jack seemed to really like it. The texture is very different, and it has a slight nutty taste.

I make all my sauces ahead of time and freeze them in 2-person meal-sized containers for easy microwave reheating and use.

Jack really likes the butternut squash sauce and handles it a lot better than tomato-based sauces. It is very simple. I just steam or boil some cubed butternut squash. Add (or boil in) chicken bullion (or a veggie broth would probably be good too), olive oil, salt, pepper, oregano, and basil. I just add all the seasoning to taste. I then puree it with my hand blender.

Before we were trying to go low-soy, I also added medium texture tofu and pureed everything together. I called that over rice pasta "no mac, no cheese, mac and cheese." The texture and appearance was very similar to Kraft mac and cheese. heh

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Focaccia sandwiches...

I used the focaccia recipe tonight for some sandwiches. I changed it a little bit by taking the bread out after 10 minutes, brushing the top lightly with olive oil, and then broiling for a couple more minutes to sort of toast the top. mmmm

I cooked up some crispy bacon and then grilled some thin-sliced zucchini and chinese eggplant with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I layered those onto the focaccia along with some deli cut turkey slices.

This is how Jack's looked:

The BEST allergen-free cake yet!

Seriously! You have to try this one!

Chocolate Mint Cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

1 1/2 cups rice flour
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1/4 cup buckwheat flour
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 cup cocoa
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 cups sugar
3 *units* egg replacer (depends on the brand of egg replacer. 1 unit = the mount needed to equal one egg)

1/4 cup rice milk
2/3 cup apple juice
approx 11/2 cups canned pumpkin
1 cup canola oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp mint extract

Mix dry ingredients together. Add wet ingredients and stir until evenly blended. If the batter seems just way too thick, add just a little bit more rice milk.
Bake in 2 lightly greased cup cake pans for approx 25 mins (or until toothpick comes out clean). They'll look a little wet in the middle, but they aren't as long as the toothpick comes out clean. :-)
This batter is also great for licking the spoon/bowl/spatula. This is the first allergen-free cake batter I have tried (pre-packaged or from recipes) that I can say that about!

Good breakfast muffins!

Pumpkin Raisin Muffins:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

1 1/3 cup rice flour
2/3 cup tapioca flour
1/4 tsp xanthan gum
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 *units* egg replacer (depends on the brand of egg replacer. 1 unit = the mount needed to equal one egg)
1/2 cup apple juice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
2 cups canned pumpkin
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
2/3 cup raisins (or nuts/seeds or a mixture)

Mix dry ingredients together. Add wet ingredients and stir until evenly blended. Bake in a lightly greased or non-stick muffin pan approx. 25 mins (until toothpick comes out clean). Makes 1 dozen muffins.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

My freezer today...

It is kind of a mess... but you get the idea. I bake about 3 times a week, and I freeze a LOT of baked goods. Plus, wheat-free flours tend to spoil quickly at room temperature, so mine are kept in the freezer door. About 6 months ago, that door was full of little baggies of pureed baby foods in ice cube form. I think I have photos of that somewhere too. heh

This was Thanksgiving 2007...

Our first allergen-free Thanksgiving was quite a success. I wish I had thought to take more photos of the food and food-prep back then. We had some friends over to join us for our big meal, and nobody minded the lack of wheat, egg, or dairy one bit! I even received several compliments. Jack was a big fan of the turkey and the green bean casserole.

Cornbread (I added diced canned jalepenos to the batch we ate separately)

2 Tbsp. ground flax seed
6 Tbsp. water
1/2 C rice flour
2/3 C corn flour
1/2 C corn meal
1/4 C sugar (1/2 C for sweeter cornbread)
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. table salt
1 C soy milk (add 1tbsp cider vinegar for a more buttermilk taste)
1/4 canola oil

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position; heat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare 8-inch-square baking dish.
2. Bring the water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add the ground flax seed, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer the ground flax seed in the water for 3 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally. Set aside.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt until well-combined.
4. Add the ground flax seed mixture, soy milk, sugar and canola oil to the flour mixture. Beat just until smooth.
5. Turn into prepared baking pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
6. Cool on wire rack 10 minutes; invert cornbread onto wire rack, then turn right side up and continue to cool until warm, about 10 minutes longer. Cut into pieces and serve.


Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies

prep time: 15 minutes | cooking time: 32 minutes | makes 4 dozen cookies (best a little on the small side)

1 cup white rice flour
1/2 cup gluten-free oat flour
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1/4 tsp xanthan gum
1 1/3 cups gluten-free rolled oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1 2/3 cups sugar
2/3 cup canola oil
2 tablespoons molasses
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon ground flax seeds

1/2 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350. Have ready 2 greased baking sheets.

Mix together dry ingredients (except sugar and flax meal)

In a seperate bowl, mix together sugar, oil, molasses, pumpkin, flax meal, and vanilla until very well combined. Add dry ingredients to wet in 3 batches, folding to combine. Fold in raisins.

Drop by tablespoons onto greased cookie sheets. They don't spread very much so they can be placed only an inch apart. Flatten the tops of the cookies with a fork or with your fingers, to press into cookie shape. Bake for 16 minutes at 350. If you are using two sheets of cookies on 2 levels of your oven, rotate the sheets halfway through for even baking. You'll have enough batter for 4 trays.

Remove from oven and get cookies onto a wire rack to cool. These taste best when they've had some time to cool and set. Good after freezing and thawing out too.


Cornbread Sausage Stuffing

1 recipe of cornbread (above) cubed
1/2 to 1lb of ground italian style sausage
4 celery stalks, with leaves if possible
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup butter
1 chopped turnip
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chicken broth or bouillon
* red pepper flake
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

* Cut cornbread into cubes about 1". Cut the celery into thin slices.
* Saute italian sausage in a large skillet. Add carrot, turnip, and celery; cook and stir for about 5 minutes. Add parsley and cornbread and mix gently so the cornbread pieces don't break. Stir in the chicken stock, salt and pepper.
* Bake, uncovered, at 350° for about 30 minutes. To stuff a turkey or roasting chicken, loosely fill the cavity - don't pack - immediately before putting the bird into a preheated oven. Any extra stuffing can be baked with the bird during the last hour of roasting.


We also had the veggies and potatoes that were roasted with the turkey, green beans with a dairy-free fresh mushroom sauce/soup, and a sweet potato casserole.

Leftovers into lunch...

Last night we had a sort of pork pot roast (boneless country ribs simmered in olive oil, chicken bullion and water, paprika, and black pepper). It was a very simple meal. After slow-cooking, I thickened the base with potato starch and made a light gravy. I served it over rice pilaf with steamed sweet potatoes sprinkled in brown sugar on the side.

Well, this is how it looked as leftovers today to both me and my 1 yr old son (served with microwave-steamed butternut squash instead of sweet potato):

Stir-fry alternative...

Today I needed to use up some fresh veggies and some chicken, so I gave in and used soy (in the form of soy sauce) for the first time in over a week. I try not to use it too much since Jack seems sensitive to it these days, but he doesn't have a bad reaction even when he drinks straight soy milk and and eats yogurt all day long. He just gets very phlegmy and a little rashy. We'll see how he does tomorrow after having a little bit of soy sauce in his stir-fry marinade/sauce.

I'd love some good ideas for soy sauce alternatives in stir-fry dishes! Take into account we can't use peanut or sesame ingredients either. The soy sauce we use is wheat-free.

Into the stir-fry went:
fresh finely chopped ginger root
wheat-free soy sauce
chile oil
light olive oil
garlic powder (fresh garlic and/or onions bother both me and Jack)
chicken breast fillets
chinese eggplant
crimini mushrooms
baby bok choy
thai basil
corn starch (or potato starch if you are corn-allergic) & water to thicken after stir-frying
Served mixed with Thai rice noodles (only ingredients are rice and water)... a nice alternative to plain old rice.