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Honeycomb

10 Nov

No, not that kind.  And not the real stuff either.  The CANDY stuff.  After having this in Colorado last Christmas, and determining it is very similar to a Violet Crumble or maybe more like a Crunchie, both of which are delicious and remind certain people of their home country, it was only a matter of time before our household became filled with honeycomb connoisseurs.  Patrick is the expert maker, I’m the expert taster (some recipes leave you with an awful, bitter, baking soda flavor which is GOOD TO NO ONE), and Stitch is the expert who looks longingly up at Patrick hoping that once all is said and done it will result in something to crunch on adorably under the dining room table.

  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 generous tbsp baking soda
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 12 ounces dark chocolate
  • Spray a non-stick cookie sheet with spray on oil of your choice.

    Combine sugar, corn syrup, honey, and ¼ cup water in a large saucepan. We actually use a big old soup pot because once you add the baking soda it poofs up to like, three times the size. Not so convenient for the usage of the candy thermometer, but much better than getting hot sugar all over the stove. Stir the ingredients together until the sugar is completely moistened. Using a wet pastry brush, wipe the sides of the saucepan to remove any stray sugar crystals.

    Insert a candy thermometer and cook the mixture over medium-high heat, without stirring, I know it’s tempting, until the temperature reaches 300 degrees.

    Then, remove it from the heat and add the baking soda all at once. Immediately whisk the candy to incorporate the baking soda, and now is when you’ll be glad you listened to me about the super big pot. Hot sugar is HOT. And then STOP whisking! Pour the candy onto the cookie sheet and don’t touch it or you’ll deflate it. It’ll still taste good, but it’ll be a little bit flat. You could also use some other vessel that had a smaller base and higher sides, but that just seems too difficult. When you’re working with hot sugar, you just want to deal with it quickly and get away. And please, do NOT think that while the whisk has been out for a while but the candy is still soft that it’s okay to press your tongue to it for a lick because surely it has cooled down by now. YOU WILL REGRET IT. Wait until it’s completely hardened and cool, and then break it into small pieces (or scrape it off the whisk with your teeth). We usually just whack the cookie sheet against the counter.

    You can eat it just like that, and probably will, while you dip the rest.

    While the candy is cooling, melt the chocolate in the microwave (30 second intervals, stirring in between) until smooth, then dunk your candy pieces into it. If you’re fancy, you can sprinkle a little fleur de sel on top because salt and chocolate, well, salt and sweet really, are secret lovers and you will not regret it.

    Pinterest is sucking my life away

    10 Nov

    Honestly, I find a new shiny object and it’s like I completely forget about my old friends.  The ones who’ve always stood by, listening to my recipes, hanging on to those partially finished ones or the ones I mean to try sometime, no really, proofreading with helpful red squiggles, helping to make things look zippy with bold or italic or color options, or stay organized with easy to search tags, and never even looking at me cross eyed when I only occasionally include photos, and even then they’re from my iPhone and not like a real food blogger at all. . . and then?  The new girl comes along.  The one that is MADE to hold on to those recipes you really REALLY do mean to try sometime.  And she’s nonjudgemental about it.  She’s all, “You just go ahead and leave that right here honey – it’s what I’m FOR.”  And you’re like, “Okay, well, maybe I’ll put a few here that I just don’t have time to blog about yet. . . . ” and the next thing you know it’s like two months later and not a single thing has been posted, even though many, many things have been made.

    For shame self, for shame.

    Chickpea Salad from the Andaz West Hollywood

    13 Aug

    Last week I stayed down at the Andaz in West Hollywood, a very hip experience.  Or at least, that’s what they’re telling the Europeans, since this place was chockablock with overseas guests, which made for great accent eavesdropping and people watching.

    Image from Andaz’s website of the rooftop pool deck

    The food here was fantastic – I am always super excited when hotels have great food, and not just weird, dry, banquet food.  I had an amazing roasted veggie sandwich, a perfect beet and blue cheese salad with citrus (which I will totally try to recreate), and the most delicious chickpea salad ever!  I asked if the chef would be willing to share, and yay, they did!!  It’s South Beach AND vegan friendly.  🙂

    For 4p.

    4 cups cooked chick peas

    0.5 cup finely chopped parsley

    0.5 cup finely chopped mint

    0.5 cup finely chopped red onion

    1 cup diced Persian cucumber

    1 cup mixed heirloom tomato (cut in half)

    0.25 cooked bulgur, place the bulgur cooked on cookie sheet until it’s crispy.

     

    Lemon dressing:

    1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

    2 tablespoons squeezed lemon juice

    1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

    3/4 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped

    1 clove garlic, minced

    3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

    pinch ground white pepper

    More s’mores

    8 Aug

    Maybe it’s just because it’s summer, but I’m being drowned in an avalanche of s’more inspiration.  I’m certain there are worse ways to go, but in an effort to empty my mind of its marshmallow madness, I figured a post was in order.

    It all started with Martha, as it seems to do.  I mean, how I can go on living without making my own graham crackers with cute little star cutouts in them for the marshmallow to ooze through and get all over your fingers I just don’t even want to know.

    Photo: Johnny Miller, from MarthaStewart.com

    AND THEN . . .to celebrate the promotion of a coworker, Sprinkles damn cupcakes arrived, and they had a s’more one, which was made just exactly how I have mentally made them many a time: a layer of graham on the bottom, chocolate cake, with a bruleed marshmallow frosting.  The graham though?  Was salty, and therefore, like heaven.  Salty grahams are where it’s at.

    S’mores pudding parfait from Foodnetwork.com

    AND THEN . . . Sandra Lee appeared on my television this morning, telling me about her S’mores Pudding Parfait, and that got me thinking.  I mean, her recipe looked a bit, well, awful, but what if I just took that idea, along with the salty grahams, and heck, if I’m making those ones Martha told me about, I’ll have those cute little star shaped middles and off cuts that will make perfect crumble fodder, well, two birds you see.

    So, follow me down this path, and we’ll end up in a delicious cloud of s’mores two ways – one for by the campfire, and one for when you get home and realize you still want s’more (I had to).

    For the grahams, we’ll listen to Martha, but maybe kick up the salt a little bit:

      • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
      • 1 cup whole-wheat flour
      • 1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
      • 1/2 teaspoon salt (3/4 tsp sounds better)
      • 1 teaspoon baking soda
      • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
      • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
      • 3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
      • 2 tablespoons honey
      1. Whisk together flours, wheat germ, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon.
      2. Beat together butter, sugar, and honey with a mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture; beat until combined.
      3. Turn out dough onto a floured surface, and divide in half. Roll out each dough half to 1/8-inch thickness, and refrigerate until firm, about 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut out squares with a 3-inch fluted square cutter. Cut a star out of the center of half the cookies using a 1 1/2-inch star cutter. Reroll scraps once, and repeat.  And now, don’t you go throwing those scraps away! Those will be the crumble for our next dessert.
      4. Place squares 1 inch apart on parchment-lined baking sheets, keeping cookies with cutouts together. Refrigerate until very firm, about 15 minutes.
      5. Bake cookies until dark brown, 14 to 16 minutes, rotating halfway through (star cookies take about 1 minute less). Let cool on sheets 10 minutes. Cookies can be stored in an airtight container up to 2 days.
      6. Make your s’mores as you will, hanging on to all of those delicious scraps and any cookies that break up on ya in production or transport.

    Once you’re home, and clean, and you’ve checked for ticks and emptied out the cooler (I’ll wait. . . . ), and you’re ready for round two, here is what I’m proposing. Remember that amazing 5 day chocolate ice cream I made? That started with a pot de creme base? Well, what if that, married your graham crumbles, with either a bit of homemade marshmallow fluff if you’re feeling like Martha Stewart herself, or your trusty store bought standby (which you probably have in your pantry, with smudges of Nutella all over the top if your household is anything like mine) if you’ve already made enough stuff from scratch.  I know which way I’m leaning at the moment, especially if I’ve just finished putting away all that camping gear.

    In any case, pot de creme + fluff + graham crumble + pot de creme + graham crumble + fluff + torch time = s’more parfait incroyable.  Hope to update this post with photos of the finished product by the end of the summer (which here in Northern California is October).  Stay tuned!

    Roasted Edamame Salad

    3 Aug

    The other day, I got some sort of wild hair about making an edamame salad.  Lucky for me, the google machine thrust Alton Brown right up to the top with his recipe for roasted edamame salad, which is OMG SO GOOD.  And vegan!  It was super easy too, except for this whole “waiting for it to cool” part – which leads to my direction that you probably want to make this in advance of when you want to eat it.  Not a good meal for those “I just got home and I am starving” nights – unless it’s yummy warm too, and I didn’t try that out.  Next time maybe.

    • 12 ounces fresh or frozen shelled edamame, about 2 cups
    • 1/2 cup fresh corn kernels, about 2 ears of corn
    • 1/4 cup finely diced scallion
    • 1 clove garlic, minced
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 cup chopped fresh tomato
    • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
    • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

    Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

    Place the edamame, corn, scallion, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper into a 13 by 9 metal pan and stir to combine. Place on the middle rack of the oven and roast for 10 to 15 minutes, just until the edamame begins to brown. Remove from the oven and place in the refrigerator until completely cool, approximately 30 minutes.

    Add the tomato, basil and vinegar to the edamame mixture and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning, as desired. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

     

    I didn’t have any tomato, and it was still delicious.

    Alton says this feeds 4, but not if it’s all you’re eating, then it feeds about 3 (2 if you go for it, and you know you want to).  Lucky for you, I figured out the nutritional content on this (well, the things that interest me in any case).

    Recipe as written (with tomato, 4 servings):  197 calories, 9 g fat, 12 g protein, 7 g fiber, 3 g sugar

     

    Leeky Pea Barley Risotto

    26 Jul

    Gross, I know. Sometimes my inner 7 year old boy comes out, and there’s not a thing I can do to put him in his place.
    After having a barley risotto in our cafeteria at work (I know, right?!) that was tomatoey and mushroomy AMAZING, I knew I had to give it a whirl. Maybe start here if that one sounds good.

    Now me, I stopped at a roadside farm stand and picked up some fresh peas (after having a chef change my mind about peas many years ago with his amazing pea risotto, I knew that’s what I wanted to do with these ones).

    Having just watched Forks Over Knives – we’re all veganesque over at casa Romo Dowd, and having been all South Beachy for however long on top of that. . . well, we’re in for quite a healthy ride my friends. Barley instead of arborio rice, some sort of strange vegan Parmesan-esque powder because Patrick won’t let me use the real stuff. . . . cross your fingers.

    1 leek
    2 cloves of garlic
    1 1/2 cups of pearled barley
    1 1/2 cups of peas
    butter
    dry white wine – I used a sauv blanc
    4 cups veggie stock/broth
    1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, or, your strange, Vegan Parmesan substitute of choice
    salt to taste
    rosemary or other herbs of your choice

    Slice the leek into thin rings, and rinse in a nice cold water bath to get all the sand out. You know how you’re supposed to do it, right?
    Shell those beautiful peas.
    Mince up the garlic.
    Throw a tablespoon (oh fine, maybe two) of unsalted butter into a pot over medium heat and let it melt.
    Put your stock or broth into another pan and heat that up.

    Leeky.

    Add the leeks, and let them cook for a couple of minutes. Add the garlic and let that cook another minute.
    Add the barley and let it cook in there until it’s toasty – and I’m talking toasty friends. You should be able to smell it, and it should look a bit, well, toasty.
    Add a cup or so of wine (I won’t judge) and stir until it has evaporated.
    Add the heated broth by the ladle (or spill) full and stir in between additions until it is fully absorbed before adding more. Do this for oh, four or five additions. You should have added about 3 cups of broth by this point.

    Mmmm.

    Add the rest of the stock/broth, and cover the risotto. Let cook for 20 minutes.
    Sample a bit – is it cooked yet? If not, let it cook a bit longer, covered. You can add more broth/stock, or water if you need to, in order to keep it risotto-y.
    Add the peas and any herbs and let cook for another 5-10 minutes til risotto and peas are done.
    Add the “cheese.” Or cheese. Lucky. Stir it in. Taste. If it needs it, add a pinch of salt and continue to taste as you add, to see if it needs more before just dumping it in willy nilly.
    I’ll admit – I was worried that my “cheese” would make it taste fake, so I only added 1/4 c to the risotto, and then garnished with it, instead of stirring in the full half cup.

    The finished product.

     

    Five Day Chocolate Ice Cream

    12 Jul

    Much like the $5 shake, this ice cream recipe professes to be worth it.  Now, I have never made chocolate ice cream before.  All sorts of fun, and various flavors, yes, but just plain old, blow your socks off chocolate?  Never.  I have also never made custard before.  I have used a double boiler to melt chocolate.  I have whipped egg yolks and sugar into ribbons.  I have made hot chocolate with cocoa powder and milk.  I have made caramel.  Yet altogether, these steps seemed so daunting!

    Friends, what an undertaking.  It nearly took me five days just last night to get through all the steps.  I certainly dirtied every surface and bowl and utensil in the kitchen in my efforts.  (admission: I burned my first batch of caramel because I was distracted watching this, and please let the records show that we can confirm that I do not like Tori Spelling.  What a condescending brat she is as a host.  Also, glitter!  Woo!)

    Some things I can tell you.

    • If your Kitchen Aid standing mixer is like mine, it does not appear that the whisk attachment really gets in there to involve itself with the sugar and yolks.  It just sort of skips across the top of it.  Well, not if you turn it up to 10.
    • Melting chocolate makes boyfriends and dogs come into the kitchen to see what’s up and hang about begging to lick some spoon or whisk or bowl ANYTHING with chocolate on it.  Use that knowledge as you will.
    • The part about letting the custard come up to 175?  Takes.  For.  Ever.  Like, “am I doing something wrong here” amounts of time.  Maybe I did something wrong.
    • Don’t take your eyes off the caramel.  As soon as you do, it will burn, and then you have to find somewhere safe to pour the molten lava so you can use the same pot again (bully for you if you have many acceptable pots you can use; I do not).
    • Add salt.  Like, a big ol’ pinch of fleur de sel if you’ve got it.  Or some other yummy, big, flakey salt.  It just does something.  I for one, do actually like to be able to JUST make out the salt flavor.  I don’t want a mouthful of chocolate sea water, but I love that little hit of salt in something that you expect to just be sweet (please see also, chocolate chip cookies, and caramel).  Espresso powder is also good, since anything with chocolate seems to benefit insane amounts from having a little espresso powder in it.  I was all out, or I would’ve.  I suppose you could crush up some chocolate covered espresso beans to stir in as you make the ice cream too – yum.
    • I didn’t have dark enough chocolate – just dark chocolate, not EXTRA dark (only 50something% in mine).  It’s good, but I think the extra dark would be better.
    • I will certainly try serving it with a drizzle of caramel and another pinch of fleur de sel.  You had better believe it.  Thanks for that obsession, Pizzeria Picco. (and Bill & Krysta)

    Chocolate Ice Cream

    7 ounces dark chocolate (70% to 75% cacao), finely chopped
    2 cups plus 2 tablespoons whole milk
    1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    6 large egg yolks
    13 tablespoons sugar, divided
    1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

    Place chocolate in a medium metal bowl. Set bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Stir chocolate until melted and smooth. Set melted chocolate aside; let cool slightly.

    Whisk milk and cocoa powder in a medium heavy saucepan over medium heat until mixture begins to boil; set aside.

    Using an electric mixer, beat egg yolks and 7 tablespoons of sugar in another medium bowl until very thick ribbons form, about 2 minutes. Whisking constantly, gradually add hot milk mixture to egg yolk mixture. Return mixture to saucepan. Add melted chocolate and whisk to blend. Stir over low heat until slightly thickened and an instant-read thermometer registers 175° about 5 minutes. Transfer chocolate custard to a large bowl and place over another large bowl of ice water. Stir until chocolate custard is cool.

    Bring remaining 6 tablespoons sugar and 2 tablespoons water to a boil in a small heavy, deep saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Boil, occasionally swirling pan and brushing down sides with a wet pastry brush (do not stir), until a dark amber color forms, about 5 minutes. Gradually whisk in cream (mixture will bubble vigorously). Whisk caramel into chocolate custard. Strain into a large container; cover and chill for 2 days.

    Process custard in an ice cream machine according to manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to another container; freeze for 3 days before eating. DO AHEAD: Ice cream can be made 3 days ahead. Keep frozen.

     

    Anyone know why they’d suggest that I keep the custard in the fridge for two days?  Because all it accomplished was that I snuck spoonfuls of it out of the bowl for two days.  In any case, I would’ve taken photos for you, but it disappeared far too quickly.  I saved one pint for a dinner with friends, and served it with caramel and fleur de sel on top (and HOLY MOLY it was delicious).  The other, not quite a pint, got a swirl of mini peanut butter cups and peanut butter swirled through for Patrick.  I don’t even have to tell you that that one was delicious as well.

    Cherry Almond Ice Cream

    8 Jul

    I finally got that ice cream maker I asked for, and am just now bustin it out. Patrick loves all things marzipan, so when I found this “vanilla cherry” ice cream recipe with almond extract in it, and I had a half jar of cherries in the fridge waiting to be used, I knew I had found a winner. Next time, I think I will see if I can get one of those tubes of marzipan and do a marzipan ribbon through.  As some of the reviewers of the recipe mentioned, there is a definite almond flavor, which I wanted, and I did actually add a little extra almond extract.  The cherries I used are morello cherries in syrup from Trader Joe’s, which are awesome, fyi.  I have used this one jar so many ways – with Greek yogurt and honey, in lemonade, for snacking, and now for ice cream.  And since this isn’t an egg based ice cream, the recipe is so fast and easy.  The recipe below, is my variation on the original recipe linked to above.

    • 2 cups heavy cream
    • 1 cup milk
    • 3/4 cup vanilla sugar
    • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract + a splash
    • 1 teaspoon almond extract + a splash
    • 1-2 cups of TJ’s Morello Cherries in Syrup, with the larger cherries cut in half
    • a bit of the syrup from the cherries for a bit of pretty pink color

    Combine the cream, milk, and sugar in a bowl, stirring until the sugar is dissolved.  Stir in the vanilla and almond extracts.  Pour the mixture into the ice cream maker and churn according to manufacturer’s directions.  In the final 5 minutes of churning, add the cherries and a little bit of the syrup.  Scoop the ice cream into cute containers and put back in the freezer to finish freezing up.  If you can’t find anything crazy cute, just get some plain ones and decorate them yourself with a label, like this one.

    Meat Loose

    2 Jul

    TWO YEARS AGO, I asked Patrick what he wanted for his birthday dinner. I just actually made it a week or so ago. :/ Worst girlfriend ever? Perhaps. And yet, he still ended up with bacon wrapped meatloaf (kind of), so maybe not.
    I saw Melissa D’Arabian make this the other day, and was reminded that holy shit, I never actually made this for Patrick. Cut me some slack though, we were buying our first house, and then we were fixing that house up, and then something else, and then another thing, and then we were in Hawaii for his most recent birthday, so it’s not like the poor man has been SUFFERING, waiting for this meal, but still. Whoops. 🙁

    Because I’ve been conditioned to love sweet potatoes (thanks South Beach), I made Aylene’s twice baked sweet potatoes (similar to Melissa’s, but with sweet p’s instead of russets, and with sour cream mixed in with butter, shredded cheese, and green onions – omg so good).

    I didn’t follow Melissa’s recipe to the letter, hence, the meat loose, rather than the meat loaf.  I didn’t have sausage, so I skipped it, and I used some of the DELICIOUS grass fed, local beef that we love to buy in bulk with friends.  It was so delicious, but did NOT hold together.  The good news was that the leftovers made one hell of a shepherd’s pie a couple of days later.  I didn’t make the gravy either, but you totally should because it sounds amazing, and kind of like it would make for Swedish meatball loaf or something.  Since I didn’t have the gravy, and totally forgot to season the freaking thing (it was still good), we served it with a little bit of brown sauce and it was heaven.

    Meatloaf with mustard and sour cream gravy

    • 3 strips bacon
    • 2 eggs
    • 1/4 cup ketchup
    • 2 tablespoons sour cream
    • 3/4 cup plain breadcrumbs
    • 2 tablespoons minced yellow onion
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • Kosher and freshly ground black pepper
    • 2 Italian sausages, casings removed (mild or spicy)
    • 1 pound 80/20 ground beef
    • Mustard and Sour Cream Gravy, recipe follows
    • Special equipment: glass loaf pan

    Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

     

    Line the glass loaf pan with the bacon, centering the strips lengthwise in the pan, letting the ends hang over the short edge.

     

    Lightly beat the eggs in a large bowl. Add the ketchup and sour cream and mix. Add the breadcrumbs, onions and garlic, stirring to incorporate, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Mix in the sausage, breaking it up to season the egg mixture evenly. Mix in the ground beef, using your hands to mix gently but thoroughly. Press the meatloaf mixture firmly into the loaf pan with the bacon, shaping the meat into a loaf shape. Unmold the meatloaf by turning the pan upside-down, and tapping the bottom to release the meatloaf. Tuck the bacon under the loaf, and place it bacon-side up on a foiled or parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until the meat registers 160 degrees F, 50 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with Mustard and Sour Cream Gravy.

    Mustard and Sour Cream Gravy:

    • 2 tablespoons butter
    • 1/2 onion, minced
    • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
    • 1 cup beef stock
    • 3 tablespoons sour cream
    • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
    • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

    In a saucepan, heat the butter over medium heat, add the onions and saute until the onions are soft, about 6 minutes. Sprinkle the flour on top of the onions and cook for 1 minute, stirring. Turn up the heat to medium-high and whisk in the stock and 1/2 cup water. Cook at a simmer, whisking frequently, until the gravy begins to thicken. Turn off the heat and whisk in the sour cream, and then the mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Taste before adding salt and pepper. Serve on the meatloaf.

    Gluten Free Baking – Blueberry Muffins

    3 Apr

    Thanks to the wonderful world of South Beach and its low glycemic index focused way of eating, I have been able to lose weight while eating well, and it’s really a lifestyle change that I can stick with.  The hardest thing for me to give up is the occasional baked good.  I love baked stuff.  Bread.  Cake.  Cupcakes.  Bread.  Crackers.  Cake.  Pastries.  Now of course, South Beach isn’t CRUEL – it allows for a small amount of indulging from time to time, but if I can indulge in an even better way, why not do that, right?  Having a gluten free friend or two, and trying out recipes that will work for them led me to the conclusion that, well. . . it’s not awful.  Stumbling across Elana’s Pantry was probably the single most important step on my road to gluten free baking, starting with, omgcanyoubelieveit, chocolate chip cookies!!   I shared the recipes with my stepmother, who is also a South Beach follower, and she bought Elana’s book, The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook.  Once she got it, she said to let me know if there was a recipe that looked good to me and she’d send it over.  I looked, and they ALL looked good to me, so I just bought the book myself (you’re welcome Elana).

    After a heart stopping stocking up trip to my local health food store (she is not kidding when she warns you that it’s going to be expensive), a few shocking moments when I thought, “she wants me to use HOW MANY EGGS?” and a needed excuse to bake something (I don’t want to go all crazy, baking “just because,” because, well, then I’d be eating all the stuff I bake), I rolled up my sleeves and got started.  The beneficiary is Patrick’s lovely mum, whose birthday is today (Happy Birthday Nora!), who is also health conscious, so I thought she’d appreciate the thought, AND the fact that I’m not just handing her fluffy flour, sugar & butter.  She can have that this weekend.  🙂

    I don’t even think this recipe is in the aforementioned book, but it IS on the blog, yay.

    Blueberry muffins

    Blueberry Muffins
    ½ cup coconut flour, sifted (whoops, totally forgot to sift)
    ½ teaspoon celtic sea salt (whoops, I used French)
    ½ teaspoon baking soda
    6 eggs (thanks girls!)
    ⅓ cup agave nectar (amber)
    ⅓ cup grapeseed oil
    1 tablespoon vanilla extract
    1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen (Wyman’s frozen)
    In a small bowl, combine coconut flour, salt and baking soda
    In a large bowl, combine eggs, agave, grapeseed oil and vanilla and blend well with a hand blender
    Mix dry ingredients into wet, blending with a hand mixer
    Gently fold in blueberries
    Place batter into a paper lined muffin pan
    Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes
    Cool and serve
    Makes 12 muffins (well, it only made 9 for me – I guess mine were too big. Typical.)

    I also considered making a glaze with Splenda and lemon juice to make them a little more “birthday cupcakey,” since I also included the zest of one lemon in the muffins (you may have noticed my obsession for lemon/blueberry things), but we were out of Splenda, so I guess she’s saved the. . . . well, not calories, but. . . the sticky at least.  The lemon flavor wasn’t too pronounced, so I think I might add just a tbsp or so of juice next time as well if I’m not doing the glaze again.

    The muffins were sweet (but certainly not overly so, just a little bit), moist, fluffy, with just a hint of coconut flavor.  They were really, very good, even Patrick thought so.  The only drawback was with my cute little brown paper wrappings, and how much muffin stuck to the paper.

    Sorry for the crummy iPhone photo, but look - you can practically see how moist they are from here!