Friday, April 22, 2011

Gluten Free Funeral Potatoes

Gluten Free Funeral Potatoes,
Gluten Free Scallop Potatoes,
Gluten Free Cheesy Potatoes,

these go by many, many different names.
But I know that they are commonly eaten on Easter, and will be at our house, so here is a Gluten Free version of the holiday casserole that tastes really good, and no one will guess it's GF.

When boiling the potatoes, you still want them a little firm, not as soft as making mashed potatoes.  Then you can cut them into chunks or grate with your cheese grater, depending on how much texture you want.
I also like to save some of the cheese to sprinkle on the top.

Gluten Free Funeral Potatoes

6 medium, peeled, boiled, shredded potatoes
1 pt. sour cream
1/2 cup onions
2 cups grated cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all together, pour into a 9x13 pan, and bake at 350 for 45 mins.

Also try:

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Chocolate Covered Peeps

How do you make something good and make it great?
Well first off, make it Gluten Free,
and then dip it in chocolate!

So that's what we did!  
I had my three year old help me make some chocolate covered Peeps!
Yes, Peeps are Gluten Free, isn't that some of the best news you've heard all day.

First start with your favorite color bunny peeps:

Put a lollipop stick halfway into the bunny:
(I cut 8 in sticks in half)

Prepare your chocolate by combine 1 cup milk chocolate or white chocolate chips and 1/2 T. shortening in a microwave-safe bowl.  
Microwave for 30 seconds, stir.  If the chocolate is not smooth and pretty thin, microwave for another 30 seconds.  Stir.
You want the chocolate nice and smooth, and be careful while melting.  You don't want it to scorch, since wasting chocolate is a big tragedy in my book.

Dip the bunnies and add chocolate/white/butterscotch chips for the nose and eyes.
Let set for about an hour or when chocolate is hard.

And enjoy!

Happy Easter!

Also try: Gluten Free Craisin-Cashew Drops

Monday, April 11, 2011

Product Review: Cherrybrook Kitchen Chocolate Cake Mix

I thought it might be fun to share with you some of the gluten free products that I like, and the ones not so much.  We all know gluten free mixes, packages, goodies are pricier than the gluten-full variety and I like to know that what I get will turn out great.

This last weekend I made cupcakes out of Cherrybrook Kitchen Chocolate Cake Mix.  The mix is not only gluten free, but certified organic and vegan.  So it's egg-free and dairy-free.  This would be very helpful if you are serving guests with multiple allergies/sensitivities.

It was easy to mix up, only needed water, oil and vanilla.  
My three year old helped me, and we had to try one as soon as the cupcakes were cooled and frosted.  
We used the Gluten Free Caramel Icing.
They were pretty good, a little dry and had that typical "gluten-free" or "healthy" taste.
Each day they proceeded to dry out and crumble.  

So in the end, if you do use the Cherrybrook Kitchen mix, make sure you bake and serve on the same day.  Not my favorite mix.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Gluten Free Rainbow Cake

The best birthday cake ever has to be
Rainbow Cake!

This idea is all over the internet.  Some are rainbow cakes are simple, like mine, or very, very fancy.
I made this cake for my daughter's third birthday!  
She loves rainbows and colors right now and skittles, so this was the perfect cake for her.

It looks complicated to make, but really it only takes a few seconds more to dye the cake batters the beautiful rainbow colors.

To make a Gluten Free Rainbow cake, it only takes 7 simple steps.

Step 1:

Get two of your favorite gluten free white cake mixes (or make from scratch if you are feeling really ambitious).  
I used the Gluten Free Dream Whip Cake recipe or just follow the directions on the box and divided the batter into 6 bowls. It's about 1 1/2- 3/4 cup of batter for each layer.

  I used food coloring drops.  You could also use the food coloring gels.  Either will work.
Here's the number of food coloring drops needed to get a rich nice color:
Red- 50 drops
Orange- 50 yellow drops, 8 red drops
Yellow- 50 drops
Green- 50 drops
Blue- 50 drops
Purple- 24 blue drops, 16 red drops

Step 2:
 I bought a package of 6 disposable aluminum pans and baked three layers at a time.
Pour colored batter into one pan.

After you have poured the batter into the pan, lift the pan a few inches off the counter and drop.  This will get all the air bubbles out.  Drop 2-3 times.

Step 3:
Bake in a 350 degree oven for 12-15 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

Remember these cakes are thinner and will cook faster.  
Keep a close eye, you don't want them to burn.

Step 4:
Let your cakes cool.

Whenever I make a cake, I have found the easiest way to let them cool and create a flat surface on the top (without cutting) is to cover a wire cooling rack with paper towel and lay the cake upside down.  Gravity will make both sides flat.
Isn't science a great tool?

Make sure the cakes are cooled to room temperature before frosting.

  If cakes are made in advance, leave on the cooling rack and cover with plastic wrap.

Step 5:
After your layers cool, stack them in rainbow order, with your favorite filling in the middle.

I used the Gluten Free Raspberry Cream and it was so good.  And pink, which was awesome.

Step 6:
Using your favorite frosting, cover the entire cake.

I used the Gluten Free Buttercream frosting, my favorite. I tinted it blue to appear like the sky.

Step 7:
The best part, the finishing touches.

I put a skittle rainbow on the top, ripped large marshmallows in half for the clouds and put a '3' made out of skittles and a skittle border around the bottom.
These are all the Original flavor of skittles.
We served the extras at the party.

This is what you see when you cut into the cake:

I think there were more giggles from the adults.  
It really brings out the kid in everyone.
Serve with ice cream and enjoy!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Gluten Free Sprinkles Strawberry Cupcakes

I found this recipe on the Martha Stewart website and supposedly it's the actual Sprinkles Cupcake shop recipe.
Even if it's not, they are really, really good.

I love the slight strawberry flavor and are perfect for a birthday party, baby shower (for a girl, of course), bridal shower, Valentine's Day, or just a Sunday Night Treat.

The first batch I made, I kinda cheated.  I thought: "do I really need to get out my heavy duty mixer", "do I really need to mix the ingredients in order", "does this recipe really only make 12".  The answer to all the above it yes, yes, yes!  Use your heavy-duty mixer, follow each step, and yes, it only makes 12 cupcakes!

The recipe makes 12 cupcakes, and the frosting says enough for 12 cupcakes, but I found I needed to make more cupcakes (which wasn't an issue!) to use up all the frosting.  So unless you like a ton of frosting on your cupcakes, half the frosting recipe or make 2 dozen cupcakes.  I would go with the latter... 

Gluten Free Sprinkles Strawberry Cupcakes
with Gluten Free Strawberry Frosting

2/3 cup fresh or frozen strawberries, thawed
1 1/2 cups Gluten Free Flour Mix
1 rounded teaspoon xanthan gum
1 rounded teaspoon baking powder
1/4 t. coarse salt
1/4 cup milk, room temperature
1 t. vanilla
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 egg, room temperature
2 egg whites, room temperature

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners; set aside.

Process strawberries until pureed.  Reserve 1/3 cup, and set aside leftover for frosting.  Add more strawberries if necessary to get 1/3 cup puree.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, and salt; set aside.  In a small bowl, mix together milk, vanilla, and strawberry puree, set aside.

In the bowl of a heavy-duty mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter on medium speed, until light and fluffy.  Gradually add sugar and continue to beat until well combined and fluffy.  Reduce the mixer speed and slowly add egg and egg whites until just blended.

With the mixer on low, slowly add half the flour mixture; mix until just blended.  Add the milk mixture; mix until just blended.  Slowly add remaining flour mixture, scraping down sides of the bowl with a spatula, ass necessary until just blended.

Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups.  I found this to be about 1/3 cup of batter, which seems like a lot but they will shrink as they cool.   Bake until tops are dry to the touch, about 22-25 minutes.  Transfer muffin tin to a wire rack and let cupcakes cool completely in tin before icing with Sprinkles Strawberry Frosting.

Gluten Free Sprinkles Strawberry Frosting

1/2 cup frozen strawberries, thawed
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, firm and slightly cold
Pinch of coarse salt
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 t. vanilla

Process strawberries until pureed.  In the bowl of a heavy-duty mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter and salt on medium speed until light and fluffy.  Reduce mixer speed and slowly add powdered sugar; beat until well combine.  Add vanilla and 3 T. strawberry puree, mix until just blended. Do not overmix or frosting will incorporate too much air.  Frosting consistency should be dense and creamy, like ice cream.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Gluten Free Caramel Frosting

This frosting takes a little effort, but it's so good on a Gluten Free chocolate cupcake.
I think I liked the frosting better than the actual cupcake...which works out perfectly because my 3-year old doesn't to frosting, so we split it and I think I get the better end of the deal!

Pair this frosting with any chocolate cake or cupcake.  This makes enough frosting for one cake or 24 cupcakes.

Gluten Free Caramel Frosting 
for Gluten Free Chocolate Cake

1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, cubed
1/4 cup milk
2 to 2 1/4 cups powdered sugar

In a heavy saucepan, combine the brown sugar, butter, and milk.  Cook and stir over low heat until sugar is dissolved.  Increase heat to medium.  DO NOT stir.  Cook for 3-6 minutes or until bubbles form in center of mixture and syrup turns amber. 
Remove from heat; transfer to a small bowl.  Cool to room temperature.  Gradually beat in powdered sugar.

Also try:

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Gluten Free Raspberry Cream

Yum, raspberries.
I love 'em.  
So beautiful, so delicious, so good for you.

Here is a recipe for Gluten Free Raspberry Cream you can use for a cake filling, a parfait, or just eat on a spoon.  It's not quite as healthy as eating just straight raspberries, but you got to do what you got to do, right!

Another perk is frozen raspberries taste great so you can make this year round.

Gluten Free Raspberry Cream
or Creme if you want it a little fancier...

8oz brick cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/2 t. vanilla or almond extract
2 drops red food coloring, optional (depends on how pink/red you want it)
8 oz Cool Whip
1 cup raspberries, fresh or frozen, thawed

Beat cream cheese until fluffy.  Gradually beat in milk, lemon juice, vanilla, and food coloring.  Fold in Cool Whip, one cup at a time depending on how fluffy you want it.  (I used about 2 cups).  Fold in berries.
Chill until ready to use or use immediately.

Also try:
Gluten Free Strawberry Mousse Parfaits
Gluten Free Layered Pudding Dessert

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Gluten Free Dream Whip Cake

This is the easiest way to make any flavor of cake taste delicious.
Did I mention, it's the easiest?
So, pick up your favorite gluten free cake mix and let's make some cake!

I made this for my daughter's birthday cake, fed it to a bunch of gluten-eaters and they all couldn't believe how wonderfully delectable it was.

*If you are a gluten-eater, just use your favorite cake mix*

Gluten Free Dream Whip Cake

1 cake mix
1 cup water, room temperature
4 eggs, room temperature
1 pkg. dry Dream Whip
1 t. vanilla or almond extract

Mix all together and bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

See what I mean, easy-peasy and delish!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Gluten Free Butterscotch Apple Dip

this is a great dip.
The ingredients might seem a little weird, but trust me I was scared at first too, the vinegar is not a typo.
Not only is this dip so good on apples, strawberries, bananas, grapes...they are all good.

*As a side note, make sure your butterscotch chips are gluten-free.  The Toll House brand are NOT gluten free, so make sure you read ingredients before you buy.  I used the Guittard brand.*

Gluten Free Butterscotch Apple Dip

1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup butterscotch chips
1/4 t. salt
2 t. white vinegar
1/2 t. cinnamon

In a saucepan over low heat, combine sweetened condensed milk, butterscotch chips, and salt.  Cook and stir until melted.  Remove from heat.  Stir in vinegar and cinnamon.  Serve warm with fruit.

Also try:

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Gluten Free Rice Pudding

Need an easy dessert for GF friends?
Try Rice Pudding!

This is a really easy dessert to make for any occasion.

There are tons of ways to make Rice Pudding, and most of the them are gluten free.  I like this particular recipe because it is
 1) simple,
2) the ingredients are always close at hand
3) it reminds me of when my Grandma-in-law (husband's grandma) would make her special "creamy rice".

There's just something comforting about a big bowl of rice pudding.


Gluten Free Rice Pudding
or creamy rice

3/4 cup long-grain white rice
6 cups milk, room temperature 
1/2 cup sugar
1 t. vanilla or almond extract
1/8 t. cinnamon
1/8 t. nutmeg
1/4 cup raisins, craisins, dried berries...whatever you like, or omit completely

Combine rice and milk in a large saucepan.
Bring rice and milk to a boil, stirring constantly to prevent scorching.  This will take about 10-15 minutes, or longer if your milk is not room temperature.  (I suggest watching an episode of The Office on while you stand there stirring).  

Reduce to a simmer, stirring occasionally and cook until the rice is soft and pudding is thickened.  This will take about 30 minutes.

Remove from heat and add sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and raisins.
Serve warm or cold.

Also try:

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Gluten Free Banana Bread

Not only is this a great gluten free bread, it's a great gluten free banana bread.
And what makes it even better?
The title is Coconut Lime Banana Bread
Throw two more wonderful ingredients and you get a masterpiece:
(yep, that's toasted coconut on the top!)

This recipe is all over the internet, but there wasn't a gluten free version.  I found the gluten-full recipes here and here and modified it and we have a great bread/cake/breakfast/dessert/potluck/way to use old bananas recipe.
This is a keeper.

Gluten Free Coconut Banana Bread with Lime Glaze

2 cups GF mix
2 t. xanthan gum
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
3/4 rounded cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
2 eggs, room temperature
1 1/2 cups mashed bananas, about 3
1/4 cup vanilla yogurt (plain yogurt will give a slight tangy taste)
3 T. apple juice
1/2 t. vanilla
1/2 cup + 1 T. coconut flakes

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 T. lime juice

Mix together the eggs, butter and sugar on medium speed for about 1 min or until creamy.  
Add the mashed bananas, yogurt, apple juice, vanilla, coconut.
Mix until blended.
Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until moist.

*Now, I like to use a bunt pan and make this more of a cake.  But you can use whatever you like: 8x8 cake pan, loaf pan, bunt, whichever shape suits your fancy.*

Spray the pan with cooking spray and if using a bunt pan, sprinkle the coconut in the bottom, then pour in the batter.  If you are using a different shaped pan, spray, pour in the batter and top with coconut.

*Now, I'll be honest...I don't measure the 1 T. coconut.  I just sprinkle on what I want and I think (ok, I know) it's more than 1 T. but I love coconut!*

Bake in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes if using a bunt or cake pan or 1 hour if using a loaf pan.

Next make the glaze.  You want to put the glaze on while the bread is still hot.  Mix together the lime juice and powdered sugar.  You want to have a runny consistency to make it easily pourable.
When the bread is done, cool for 5 minutes in the pan.
Remove from pan, and pour the glaze over the top letting it dribble down the sides.  

Serve to everyone you know.  You won't regret it.

Also try:

Friday, April 1, 2011

Gluten Free Pancake Parfaits

I love pancakes.
Love, luv, heart, obsess, dream, drool, take your pick about pancakes.
Mmmmmm, pancakes
especially gluten free pancakes.
And I also love to eat pancakes in a stack, I don't know, for some reason they taste better that way.  No really, they actually do.

So, comes the idea of the Pancake Parfait:

All you need to do to make your own is:

Make a batch of your favorite pancakes.
Quick shout-out to the new BisQuick Gluten Free Mix.  Makes it so easy and they really are so good.
(Just a tip, don't substitute in applesauce for the oil, for some reason it just doesn't really turn out as good.)

Then layer vanilla yogurt (not plain, unless you want it to be really tangy!) and the fruit of your choice.

Stack another pancake, and so on and so forth until you have enough in your stack to make you very, very happy.  Top with yogurt and fruit.

Then drizzle with Gluten Free syrup, and you are ready to dig in.  
You really won't need that much syrup, it's pretty sweet from the fruit and yogurt.

Strawberries are my fav, but I think that any fruit/berry would be great...maybe not a tomato, but I go against science on this one and consider it a veggie.


Go bananas:

Gives me another reason to wake up in the morning.