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Saturday, April 30, 2011

lemon bars - gluten free + dairy free

as you can tell, i've been on a blogging hiatus. i've been very busy with work lately. was in vegas at a convention and now am back in the office catching up on work. i've also been nailing down photo shoots! this past weekend i took pics for another colleague. see them here: . i'm thrilled that folks are noticing my photography and want me to take their pics and i cant wait to purchase some new equipment. i already have another 3 gigs lined up over the next two months!

back to the topic at hand - food. my mom is in town and told me that she had contemplated baking lemon bars and mailing them out to me. ha! did she know that i had been testing lemon bar receipes? i told her about my  failed attempts at making my own allergy friendly version. in doing so, i attempted to make sweetened condensed soy milk. 6 hours and one dead arm (from constant stirring) later i had a disgustingly sweet grey-brown goo. despite that i continued making the bars - disasterous. they turned out mushy and super acidic. acidic to the point that they irritated my thoat after eating them. after telling my mom this she looked surpised. apparently her version was dairy free by default. so we decided to make lemon bars yesterday. the best part of all, they taste good!

lemony love.
lemon bars
  • 1 c graham crackers (gluten free)
  • 1 tbsp palm shortening
  • 1 c granulated sugar
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice, fresh squeezed
  • 2 tsp lemon zest
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 eggs
  • confectioners sugar (optional, for dusting)
preheat oven to 350 - cooking rack placed in center. in a bowl combine grahan cracker crumbles with palm shortening - i used a pastry cutter to do so. press mixture into the bottom of an 8x8 pan - create a 1/2 inch 'wall' of crust on the sides of the pan. bake in oven for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

meanwhile, combine sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest, baking powder, salt and eggs in a stand mixer and combine on high speed for 3 minutes, until fluffy. pour mixture on top of hot crust, then return pan to oven to bake 25-30 minutes. test for doneness by lightly touching the surface of the lemon mixture. you'll know its done if your finger doesnt leave an indentation. cool on a wire rack, then place in fridge until completely cooled - around an hour. dust with confectioners sugar before serving.

to be honest, this def isnt a finalized version. the lemon filling was absorb into the crust a bit, so there was no clear definition between the two 'layers'. i was so happy to have a good tasting product that i decided to go ahead and blog about them. my intentions are to tweek the recipe to the point that they look exactly like a regular lemon bar.

wishing you all a restful and peaceful weekend! and be sure to check out these great blogs -
little brick ranch
paisley passions
stuff and nonsense
at the picket fence
sweet as sugar cookies

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

orange honey bread -- gluten free + dairy free

happy wednesday everyone! the weekend is within reach! by now, you may have noticed that i've not blogged about gluten free/dairy free breads with yeast. surprise! if you hadnt already guessed i'm also completely yeast free - cant look at the stuff without having an allergic reaction.

that being said, all of the bread recipes that i've featured are quick breads. essentially, a quick bread is a one that doesnt contain yeast, instead it employs chemical leavening agents - baking powder and baking soda. the right combination of the two will give rise (no pun intended) to your bread. quick breads tend to be a bit denser than your typical sandwich bread, but are a great alternative to eating no bread at all!

i've yet to attempt a savory quick bread yet - and plan to do so in the near future. for the time being check out this semi-sweet orange honey bread. 

please take a few minutes to stop by these blogs that i've found great recipes and inspriring home projects on!
my simple home life

orange honey bread
  • 1 c honey
  • 4 lrg eggs
  • 1 tbsp orange zest
  • 1 c a/p gluten free flour blend (without guar gum - if yours contains guar or xanthan do not add the extra listed below)
  • 1/2 c sorghum flour
  • 1.5 tsp guar gum
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • palm shortening - to grease pan
preheat oven to 350 degrees with rack in center of oven. grease a loaf pan with palm shortening. in a bowl whisk together honey and eggs. stir in orange zest. in a separate bowl sift together a/p gluten free flour, sorghum, baking powder and baking soda. slowly add dry ingredients into egg and honey mixture. pour mix into loaf pan and bake for 30 minutes. check for doneness with a wooden toothpick - if it comes out clean its done - if not bake another 5 minutes, then check again - repeat until toothpick comes out clean. allow pan to cool on cooling rack for 5 minutes, then turn bread of pan and allow to cool completely on cooling rack.

i love to serve this semi-warm. i toss my slices into the microwave for around 10 seconds then spread a bit of non-dairy margarine and jam on top. cheers!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

dill potato salad -- gluten free + dairy free

i'm home! after a week in vegas i'm back in colorado and ready to start enjoying the gorgeous spring weather. today i'm heading over to the boulder reservoir with the dog and then plan to stop by the farmers market. i'm bringing my camera in hopes that i can capture some great shots.

with warmer weather making an appearance i'm getting really excited to start blogging on lighter, refreshing recipes. i purchased a huge 5lb bag of organic fingerling potatoes this past weekend and wanted to use them immediately - the potato colors are beautiful - the bag contains baby yukons, baby reds and baby purples. the colors combined make for a colorful potato salad. i'm a huge potato salad fan and wanted to try and put a fresh spin on the traditional version. to do so, i dressed this potato salad with olive oil, white wine vinegar and fresh dill instead of mayonnaise.

got a favorite potato salad recipe? share it with me! i've got a bunch more up my sleeve. one of my favorites includes my mom's sweet potato salad. stay tuned...her recipe will surely make an appearance on everything reconsidered soon! oh and one last thing - my chocolate zucchini cake was featured on two blogs yesterday!!! At The Picket Fence & Stuff + Nonsense! score :)

dill potato salad
  • 1 lb fingerling potatoes cut into 1/2 inch rounds
  • 1/4 large sweet onion diced
  • 2 celery stalks diced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1-2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill sprigs chopped
  • salt + pepper to taste
  • 1 chopped hard boiled egg (optional)
to begin boil a medium pot of water seasoned with kosher salt - add in potatoes and boil until they are fork tender around 10-15 minutes. while the potatoes are cooking dice sweet onion and celery. once potatoes are cooked strain well then place in serving bowl or pyrex bowl (if you haven't already stopped using plastic storage containers STOP NOW!). carefully stir in onion, celery, dill and drizzle with olive oil and white wine vinegar. season with salt and pepper to taste.

if you choose to add in hard boiled egg - place eggs in cooking pot and cover with water until submerged. bring to a rolling boil - allow to boil for 2 minutes. cover pot and remove from burner. allow to sit 12-15 minutes. run cold water over eggs to stop the cooking process.  once eggs are cooled, peel and dice - then sprinkle on top of the dill potato salad. i do this at 5,400 ft above sea level - you will definitely need to adjust depending on where you live.

this is a perfect spring/summer side dish - i've served up with bison hot dogs and pickles. its light and refreshing and not nearly as heavy as the its usual mayonnaisey counterpart. hope you all have wonderful weather, and a restful weekend.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

egg omelette -- gluten free + dairy free

i'm off to vegas eaarrrrrrly this morning for work and will be there until next friday - i'm going to a big trade show - NAB. i travel a decent amount for work - planning events. at some point i plan to write a post on travelling with food allergies. i've become a pro at it and want to share my tips with you!

i prepared this dish last weekend, knowing that i wouldnt be cooking/baking until i return from vegas. breakfast!!!!!! i am typically an energy bar type girl. my fav's are larabar's - all natural, gluten free, corn free and most dont contain diary - i eat them almost everyday. however, on the weekends when i have a bit more time i like to have substansial breakfasts - most of the time, that includes light and fluffy eggs. i've done a bit of experimenting with different milks and have found that unsweetened rice milk is great to use for scrambled eggs or omelettes.

egg omelette
  • 2 eggs
  • 3-4 tbsp unsweetened rice milk
  • 1 tbsp sweet onion chopped
  • 1 tbsp red pepper chopped
  • 1-2 white mushrooms sliced
  • 1 slice deli ham (i buy applegate farms nitrate, nitrite free from whole foods)
  • fresh dill for for garnish
  • kosher salt + pepper
  • cooking spray or 1tsp olive oil
to begin heat a small fry pan and coat it with cooking spray or olive oil over medium heat. toss in onion, pepper, mushroom and ham (i reserve a few cubes of pepper and onion for garnish). cook to preferred doneness - i like them slightly browned. in a bowl crack both eggs and whisk together with a fork. stir in rice milk, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. pour eggs over cooked onion, pepper, mushroom and ham. allow egg to set, then carefully run a spatula along the sides on the fry pan, loosening the egg from the bottom. when the egg has set enough slide spatula underneath the entire omelette and then flip. i prefer this method to just folding it in half - i dont particularly like running eggs. cook for another few minutes, or until egg is cooked. fold in half and transfer to serving plate. garnish with uncooked pepper, onion and fresh dill.

this is a fabulous way to begin your morning - super healthy, fresh and full of protein. i enjoy mine with a glass of oj and sometimes (if i'm feeling adventurous) breakfast sausage. hope you all have a great weekend!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

chocolate zucchini cake -- gluten free + dairy free

oh boy, i've got a bday coming up this week - thursday to be exact. time definitely flies and seems to go by faster and faster every year. so many people in my life have birthdays in march and april - so i'm dedicating this recipe to all of us.

finding cakes that are suitable for me to eat is next to impossible so my boyfriend and i whipped together two creations this weekend. first, we put together my flourless chocolate cake (we served this with a blood orange gelato - amazing!) and decided to make a more traditional cake. i've made chocolate zucchini muffins in the past - so easily adapted my recipe to making a round cake. this almost feels healthy since theres a bunch of zucchini in it, almost.

chocolate zucchini cake
  • 1 c all-purpose gluten free flour blend (without xanthan or guar gum)
  • 1/2 c sorghum flour
  • 1.5 tsp guar gum
  • 1/2 c cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 c sugar
  • 2 eggs room temperature
  • 1/3 c canola oil (or other light oil)
  • 2 c finely shredded zucchini (squeeze some moisture out)
  • 1/2 c chocolate chips
preheat oven to 350 degrees - with rack in center of oven. grease and sprinkle flour on the inside of a round 9 inch cake pan. in a mixing bowl whisk together ap flour, sorghum, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. in another mixing bowl combine canola oil, sugar, eggs until well blended, then stir in shredded zucchini. combine wet and dry ingredients together - stir until combined - careful not to overmix. gently stir in chocolate chips (optional - but i highly suggest adding them!) pour mixture into greased and flour dusted 9 inch cake pan. place in center of oven and bake 30-35 minutes. check for doneness by inserting a wooden toothpick into the center of the cake - when it comes out clean, the cake is done. when cake is done remove from oven and place on a cooling rack for 5 minutes, then remove cake from pan. place cake on cooling rack and allow to cool completely.

mark wanted to dress up some of the cake and took 1/4 of it - i left the remaining cake and enjoyed it as was - however, next time i plan on topping it with chocolate ganache. mark created a layer cake with his portion by slicing it lengthwise and speading organic mixed berry jam in the center. he then covered it with homemade vanilla royal frosting. quite yummy.

happy birthday all!

this post was featured on

Stuff and Nonsense

Saturday, April 2, 2011

spiced pumpkin bread -- gluten free + dairy free

i might be going out on a limb here - but this might very well be my favorite non-chocolate gluten and dairy free baked good thus far. super decadent and moist - this spiced pumpkin bread is a wonderful addition to my (and hopefully yours) repertoire. this bread drums up thoughts of the fall, despite springs presence.

its going to be a gorgeous, sunny 75 degrees today in boulder, colorado. the cherry on top? its opening day at the boulder farmers market !!!! i'm super excited to head over there this morning. if you are local to boulder and you havent been there yet, GO! there are tons of gluten free + dairy free goods and a beautiful abundance of local organic fruits + vegetables. its a feast for the eyes to say the least. i plan on bringing my camera so i can capture all of the colors + textures.

on another note, last weekend i took some family pics for one of my friends at work - i got to capture some good shots of the lovely family - check out the pics on my flickr page!

now, on to this spiced pumpkin bread i was raving about...

fall vs. spring

spiced pumpkin bread
  • 1 c gluten free flour mix (not containing xanthan or guar gum - i used king arthur a/p gf mix)
  • 1 c sorghum flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1.5 tsp guar gum
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg - freshly ground
  • 1/8 tsp cardamom - omit if you dont have this handy
  • 1 can pumpkin puree (not spiced)
  • 1 c packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 c canola oil
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp lemon zest
preheat oven to 350. grease and flour the inside of a loaf pan. in a bowl whisk together dry ingredients (not including brown sugar). in a  separate bowl or in a stand mixer combine brown sugar, oil, maple syrup, vanilla extra and lemon zest on medium speed. slowly stir dry ingredients into wet until combined. pour batter into greased and floured loaf pan. place in center of oven and bake for 50 minutes. test for doneness with a toothpick - by inserting it into the center of the loaf. when the toothpick comes out clean, the bread is done. if you need to bake the bread for add'l time - check it every 5 minutes. when done, remove from oven place loaf pan on cooling rack and allow to cool 10 minutes. remove bread from loaf pan and allow it to cool completely on the cooling rack.

sure, these are definitely fall flavors - but this is such a yummy comfort food. super moist and easy to enjoy any time of the day. i've been sporting this for breakfast for the past week. i cant wait to try making variations of this bread (using pumpkin) - its such a healthy addition that lends breads a tremendous amount of moisture. i'm already brainstorming ideas, so get ready.