Thursday, November 11, 2010

Delicious Gluten-Free Waffles

Gluten free waffle looks "normal," doesn't it?
I'm trying to help my son go gluten free, at least mostly gluten free.  Gluten-full products make the boys spacey, which doesn't work out well for a 10-year-old who is trying to grow and learn.  I was nervous about trying gluten free for this waffle recipe because I tried frozen gluten free waffles one time, and Max gave them a resounding thumbs-down.  Since the gluten free pizza turned out well, though, I thought waffles would be a good follow-up.
This recipe comes from I changed a few things, but I have to give credit where it's due.
If you've been toying at all with the idea of going gluten free, this is a good place to start.

Gluten Free Waffles
  --adapted from

  • 2 cups Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum powder*
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat waffle iron.  
In a medium bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.  
In a large bowl, beat eggs in large bowl with hand beater until fluffy.  
Beat in buttermilk, milk, butter, oil, and vanilla.  
Beat in dry ingredients just until smooth.
Spray preheated waffle iron with non-stick cooking spray.
Pour mix onto hot waffle iron.  
Cook until golden brown.
I like to serve mine hot with butter and maple syrup.  Yummmmmm.

*Xanthan gum powder gives gluten-free baked products a more "bready" texture.  I accidentally left out the xanthan gum the last time I made these waffles, and the batter was markedly more drippy, and the waffles much crisper.  So, if you want light, crisp waffles, leave out the xanthan gum, which is actually too expensive if you're an occasional gluten-free baker (e.g. $11.99/8 oz. package).

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Banana Streusel Muffins

Banana Streusel Muffin

This is actually a great recipe for those times you have at least three large bananas that are just too brown to eat, but not exactly gross enough to go into the trash. All of the fruit in these make them super moist and banana-y, and the streusel topping makes them buttery sweet. Next time I make them I may ease up on the cinnamon in the streusel, but other than that, I'm very happy with this recipe which is based on a fabulous recipe from

Banana Streusel Muffins
    --adapted from

Muffin Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All Purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large bananas, mashed (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 3/4 cup sugar (I used a white and light brown sugar combo)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted & cooled
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped nuts (pecans and/or walnuts)--optional
Streusel Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 3/4  teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons butter 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Coat muffin pans with non-stick spray, or use paper liners. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; stir in one cup of the walnuts; set aside.
Combine streusel ingredients in a medium bowl and rub with fingers until it's crumbly and butter is all mixed in.  Stir in the other 1/2 cup of walnuts. Set aside

Combine bananas, sugar, egg, and melted butter in a large bowl. Fold in flour mixture, and mix until smooth. Scoop into muffin pans.  Top each muffin with a couple of tablespoons of nutty streusel.
Bake in preheated oven. Bake average size muffins for 10 to 15 minutes, and large muffins for 25 to 30 minutes. Muffins will spring back when lightly tapped.
Makes about 18 average size muffins, or 6 jumbo and 5 average size muffins

Lego figures loved the muffin.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Thin Crust Pizza

Thin Crust Pepperoni Pizza
Thin Crust Pepperoni & Sausage Pizza
Cheesy Garlicky Pizza Crust
I've been making pizza for years now, and I think I've finally narrowed down my favorite two crusts:  this one, and the ciabatta crust pizza.  This crust is crispy, and almost cracker-like.  Like most delicious things, it takes time to make this crust taste so, so good.  In order for this to taste the best, this dough should be made the day before it is to be baked and eaten.  Also, I highly recommend using a baking/pizza stone.  I keep my baking stone on the bottom rack of my oven at all times.
Tonight I made the pizza a few different ways: pepperoni, pepperoni & sausage, and just cheese, seasoned olive oil and Penzy's Brady Street Cheese Sprinkle (a cheese & garlic seasoning).
This recipe makes two very large pizzas that barely fit on my pizza stone. Lately, I've been dividing the dough into sixths, making smaller crusts, and freezing leftover crusts for a later date.

Thin Pizza Crust
   --adapted from

In a heavy-duty stand mixer (like a Kitchen Aid) fitted with a dough hook, add the water, yeast and sugar.  Allow to sit for about five minutes to soften and it should start to bubble a little.

Add the oil, salt, and flour. Mix on low speed until all of the flour and water have mixed and a stiff dough ball forms, about 3-4 minutes.  (Often the dough will look way too dry.  Sometimes I’ll add water, 2-3 tablespoons or so.  Sometimes I will just work the dough with my hands until it forms a cohesive ball.)

Place the dough ball into a gallon sized zip-top bag that’s had a few drops of vegetable oil rubbed around the interior.  Let dough rise in the refrigerator about 24 hours before using.  This step is important, as it develops the flavor of the crust.

Preheat oven to 500°F.  When dough has risen 24 hours, remove from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature for about an hour.  Turn dough out onto a floured work surface.  Cut dough in half.  Roll each half into a very thin circle (or oval sometimes).  I try to get my crust to about 1/8 of an inch thick.  Dock the dough all over with a sharp knife to prevent large bubbles.

Place dough disc onto parchment paper and slide dough (with parchment) onto the pizza stone.  Bake at 500°F for 4-7 minutes, or until just starting to brown.  Remove to a wire rack to cool.  Then top with favorite toppings and return to the pizza stone to bake until cheese is bubbling (about 5-7 more minutes).

If you only want one pizza at a time, you can form the other half of the dough into crust, bake, cool, and freeze for later use. If you want the crust to fit into a gallon-size zip top bag, though, you'll have to make 6 crusts from this recipe.

Dove Peanut Blossoms

Peanut Blossoms with Dove, not Kisses
This recipe comes from King Arthur Flour.  The only thing I changed is that I use Dove Milk Chocolate Promises instead of Hershey's Kisses.  They taste waaaaaay better with the Dove chocolate. This is a favorite of mine and Ezra's now.  I can't make them just for the heck of it, or I end up eating half of them myself.  I have to wait for special occasions to make them, and when I do, they go fast.

Dove Peanut Blossoms
  --adapted from King Arthur Flour


  • ¼ cup butter
  • ¼ cup vegetable shortening
  • ¾ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 T milk


Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a large bowl, beat the butter, shortening, and peanut butter until well blended.  Add the sugars; beat until light and fluffy.  Add the egg, milk, and vanilla, and beat well.  Stir the flour, soda, and salt together.  Gradually mix into the wet ingredients.

Shape the dough into 1 ¼-inch balls.  Roll in sugar.  Place balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and bake in a preheated 375°F oven for 10 to 12 minutes.  Remove from the oven and immediately place one chocolate Promise on each cookie.  Then go back and press each Promise gently into the cookie.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes about 3 dozen cookies.
Dove Peanut Blossoms all lined up.
Rainbow sugars make these cookies even more special.

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