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Almond Magic Cake

It’s been a long time since I’ve been so obsessed with a recipe.  I pinned it years ago, and somehow forgot about it, though the idea was fascinating.  Then over winter break this year I stumbled back across it and knew I had to give it a try.

Almond Magic Cake | Finding Time for Cooking

I did make one major change to the recipe.  The original is for a vanilla cake, but my M.O. in life is, why make something vanilla when it can be almond instead??  I mean, seriously.  This cake is really easy to throw together, and yields the most amazing, creamy, custardy, flan-y cake.  I ended up making it again a few days later, in a gluten-free version (to be posted here later once I’ve perfected it).  Give this a try, you won’t be disappointed! [Read more…]

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Gluten-Free Rosemary Cheddar Biscuits

Oh my goodness, this has got to stop. It has been way too long. I literally made these for our Fitzco #fitzgiving back in November, but haven’t had a chance to post until now. And that’s not fair, because these are pretty darn good.

Gluten-Free Garlic Cheddar Biscuits

I offered to make a bread, so threw together my whole wheat olive oil rosemary bread, which is the bomb. But at the last minute I asked if we had any gluten-free folks and since they weren’t sure, I went searching for a good, easy GF biscuit or roll recipe.

As I’ve mentioned several times before, I don’t like using all sorts of weird ingredients that the average person wouldn’t recognize or be able to find. Don’t be alarmed by how many ingredients are listed in this particular recipe either, most of them are ones you already have on-hand. I did make my own gluten-free flour mix (I used an easy 1-1-1 mix of corn flour, brown rice flour, and cornstarch), but even if you want to leave that out you can just substitute more almond meal.

gluten-free garlic cheddar biscuits rosemary chopped

Because they’re made largely (or entirely) with almond meal, their texture definitely isn’t like a fluffy dinner roll. It’s a little grainier, denser. But I inhaled a few just the same (though be warned, because of the almond meal, they’re higher-calorie than you might think). The garlic is intense but awesome, and the cheddar great—I went light on the butter wash at the end. They were also still really moist and delicious several hours later when I actually reheated and served them. [Read more…]

Almond Cake with Fruit Compote (gluten-free)

I’ve amassed a fairly impressive arsenal of gluten-free dessert recipes over the past few years, since my friends John & Bridgette went GF.  And one of the biggest things I usually look for in these recipes is that they’re naturally free of gluten, rather than using weird ingredients to try and approximate the texture and taste of wheat recipes.

Almond Cake with Fruit Compote done

That’s why I’ve developed quite an affinity for almond meal.  It’s super yummy, plus it has an awesome grainy texture—not perfect for every type of recipe, but helps provide a “crumb” to certain cakes and pastries.  It’s also pretty easy to work with and really forgiving.  I’ve kind of been on an almond cake kick lately for myself, because the flavor is perfect for this summer-to-fall transition time we’ve been in.

Almond Cake with Fruit Compote

Which brings us to the uber-moist flavor bomb we’re talking about today…

Almond Cake with Fruit Compote sliced

This recipe is from Cookie + Kate, and as soon as she posted it, I was dying to give it a try.  The almond cake is the star, and is taken up a level by the combination of orange zest and cinnamon in the batter, and the maple syrup makes it super moist.  It’s also literally the easiest batter to throw together.  Then the slightly-sticky cake is stopped with a roasted fruit compote, which provides additional juice dripping down into the cake.  I went with pears and raspberries, which in hindsight was way too much juice to deal with.  But you can use whatever strikes your fancy.  This is awesome as leftovers, particularly for breakfast.

Don’t judge. [Read more…]

Double-Chocolate Banana Muffins (gluten-free if you want)

That looks totally decadent, right???

Double-Chocolate Banana Muffin

They kind of are—and they’re also super healthy.  They get their moistness from banana, coconut oil, and honey, and a deeeeeep chocolate flavor from both Dutch-process cocoa powder as well as dark chocolate chips.

Double-Chocolate Banana Muffins baked

They came together super fast and baked up like a dream. And, they can be made gluten-free so easily without any weird fake mixes or flours.

Double-Chocolate Banana Muffins

And just look how prettttttty they are! The almond meal makes them a little heartier than your average muffin, and since they don’t have refined sugar they’re less likely to make your blood sugar spike then dip.  I call that a breakfast win! [Read more…]

Herbed Goat Cheese Tart with Spring Peas

English peas in the spring are one of those magical things.

Herbed Goat Cheese & Spring Pea Tart

There’s this super narrow window when they’re in season (usually a few weeks in April), and if you can catch them fresh-off-the-vine they’re this crunchy, sweet treat bursting with flavor.

Herbed Goat Cheese & Spring Pea Tart2

My CSA box back in April came with three whole bags of English peas, still in their pods. Shelling them can take quite a bit of work—though if I’d been smart, I would have soaked them in a water or blanched them for a minute to make them softer. I just sat in front of the TV and shelled the peas while vegging out. As soon as I got the peas, I knew exactly what recipe I wanted to make.

Herbed Goat Cheese & Spring Pea Tart assembled

I pinned this tart recipe probably a few years ago, but haven’t had the chance to make it. It just sounded awesome across the board. My family teases me about how much I love goat cheese, but it’s seriously awesome! The combination of tangy goat cheese, creamy greek yogurt, fresh herbs, a little salt, and then those sweet peas is truly unique. I wasn’t able to find micro greens, but I do think they’d make this recipe even better.

It’s also important to note that this is NOT great as leftovers…the tart solidifies in the fridge and becomes quite hard and a little flavorless, losing the awesome texture and tang it had when it was fresh. This recipe is perfect for something like a Mother’s Day brunch or Sunday morning bridal shower—something a little fancy, but where it will get consumed right away. [Read more…]

Plum Pound Cake with Almond Crumble

I’ve been on a weird plum kick. It’s not a fruit I grew up eating, and if you asked me to name my top five or ten fruits, not sure plums would make the list. But recently they’ve been calling to me, with their weird thick, bitter skin and their totally unpredictable insides. Sometimes it’s mealy and bland, but sometimes you get rewarded with sweet, juicy, awesomeness.

Fluffy Plum Cake with Almond Crumble

This bears a striking resemblance to both the plum torte and the pear torte adaptation I’ve made over the past few months, but this is more of a pound cake—denser, not quite as sweet, and with a crumbly almond topping instead of the cinnamon sugar of the other.

Fluffy Plum Cake with Almond Crumbles

The original recipe is in metric amounts and in Polish. Since I don’t speak Polish (and Google Translator apparently doesn’t very well either), I took some liberties with amounts and ingredients. And pretty much everything else. So, there’s that. Despite my completely winging it, the end result was pretty doggone good.

fluffy plum cake with almond crumble plums

And, of course, there were plums.
[Read more…]

Unleavened Almond Bread

I apparently don’t read directions well, which is why my stash of unleavened bread ended up molding with a few days to go (fridge, schmridge). So Sabbath morning I needed to make something to take me through the last few Days of Unleavened Bread.

Unleaved Almond Bread

I considered just making the same soft unleavened sandwich bread that I’d made a few days earlier, but decided something a little sweeter was in order. My Aunt Paula had sent me this recipe, one of their favorites, so I gave it a try.

Unleaved Almond Bread with Honey

I’m a sucker for almond flavor to begin with, and this was super simple to whip up. I took the sugar amount down a little, but it’s up to you how sweet you want it. I also used a combination of white flour, whole wheat flour, and almond meal, which gave it an awesome texture. All-in-all, this one’s a keeper! [Read more…]

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