Monday, November 17, 2014

Caramel Banana Roll:

I love my grandma's Pumpkin Roll recipe!
We had a lot of banana's to use up the other week, and as I was looking down through as many recipes containing bananas as I could, I stumbled across this one. It looked interesting, and I actually I had all the ingredients (especially the bananas), so I gave it a try.
It didn't have a strong banana flavor, but it was really, really good!!! 
The little extra surprise in the filling, gave it just the right touch!!
I hope you give it a try!

3/4 cup flour
1 tsp. xanthan gum
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
3 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup mashed banana

1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup powder sugar
6 tblsp. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup caramel sauce (just the ice cream topping in the squeeze bottle is fine)

Grease a 15x10-inch jelly-roll pan with cooking spray. Line with wax paper (or parchment paper) and then spray the wax paper with cooking spray.
Stir together the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; set aside.
In a large bowl, beat together the eggs and sugar, with an electric mixer, until thick and smooth. Mix in the vanilla and banana. Add the flour mixture. Mix just until combined; be sure not to over-mix.
Pour into prepared pan and spread out evenly.
Bake at 375 degrees for 13-15 minutes or until golden brown and the top of the cake springs back when touched.
Meanwhile, mix together filling ingredients; set aside. 
Lay out a kitchen towel. Place a piece of wax paper on the towel. Sprinkle wax paper with powder sugar. 

Carefully, flip the cake out onto the wax paper - bottom of the cake up. Slowly, pull the wax paper off the cake. Let stand for about 2 minutes. Roll up the cake, wax paper, and towel together, starting at the short end. Let stand 5 minutes.

Unroll, and spread the filling over the cake to within 1-inch of the edges. Spread carefully, or else you might tear the cake. Roll the cake, starting at the short end, carefully pulling away the wax paper from the cake as you roll. When you reach the end of the cake, leave on the wax paper. Place in a 9x13 baking dish. Refrigerate for about 2 hours or until chilled firm. Remove from the wax paper and gently wrap in foil. Refrigerate or freeze until ready to serve. Slice in 1/2-inch slices to serve.

-This freezes really, really well and is easier to cut while it's frozen.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Homemade Oreos:

When I first saw these, I thought they would be like any other chocolate sandwich cookie. It seems like everyone tends to call those "homemade oreos" but they are nothing short of an ordinary chocolate sandwich cookie. That doesn't make them Oreo's.
These, however, were definitely the exception.
The cookie part was more dense and maybe even a little drier than normal,
and the biggest surprise, is that the filling tastes just like real Oreo cookie filling! Seriously!
It was pretty incredible! And definitely tasty to someone who hasn't had Oreo's in 10 years or so!
I hope you try them out! 

2 & 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. xanthan gum
1 cup cocoa powder
2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 & 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla

1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup vegetable shortening, room temperature
2 tsp. vanilla
3 & 1/2 cups powder sugar

In a small bowl, combine the flour, xanthan gum, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.

In the bowl of a mixer, beat the butter until light and creamy. Add sugar and brown sugar, and mix until combined. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a lid, if the bowl has one. Chill for 30 minutes.

Using a cookie scoop to keep the cookies all the same size, roll dough into balls. Place on greased cookie sheets - 12 cookies to a sheet. With the bottom of a cup or flat spatula, lightly flatten each cookie.

Bake at 350 degrees for 6 minutes. The cookies will look like they aren't totally done, but that's how you want them. Don't over-bake. Allow to cool on cookie sheets for 5 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely. 

For the filling: beat together butter, shortening and vanilla until smooth. Add powder sugar, and mix until combined. The filling is very stiff, but that's how it's supposed to be. Using the same size cookie scoop that you used for the dough, place one scoop of filling onto half of the cookies. Lightly spread out the filling, and top with the other half of the cookies.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week.

-The original recipe said that these cookies freeze really well. I didn't have any leftover to try it out, but if anyone else does, please leave a comment and let me know how it turns out!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Peanut Butter Haystacks:

If you like the other No-Bake Cookie recipe I have on the blog, then you will probably enjoy these as well!
This was one of my grandma's recipes (she just LOVED sweets!!!).
I hope you enjoy them!

2 cups sugar
1 stick (8 tablespoons) Butter
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup peanut butter
2 cups mini marshmallows
2 & 1/4 cup oats (quick or old-fashion, it doesn't matter)
1/4 cup flaked coconut, optional

Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Stir in the sugar and milk. Bring to a boil and cook for 1 & 1/2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add peanut butter and marshmallows. Stir until marshmallows are completely melted. Add oats and coconut, if desired, and stir until well combined. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto wax paper (I used a cookie scoop for this, to keep them all the same size). Allow to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

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Monday, October 27, 2014

Homemade gluten-free Bagels:

Well, this recipe has been a long time coming! I have tried several different bagel recipes, and have had a few requests for a good bagel recipe, and I think I have finally found it!!!!! 
It takes a little while, but it's really easy to make.
I want to expirement farther, and try making blueberry ones, cinnamon-raisin ones, and so on. But I just couldn't wait to share the basic recipe with you, so here it is!
I hope you try it out, and if you try other variations, please let me know!!

1 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup potato starch
1/2 cup tapioca starch
1/2 ground flax seed
1 tblsp. xanthan gum
1 & 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tblsp. rapid rise yeast
2 tblsp. honey
1 tsp. cider vinegar
2 tblsp. canola oil
1 & 1/4 cups warm water

1 tblsp. molasses

  1. Preheat your oven to 170 degrees (or lowest temperature. Mine only goes to 170).
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix all the dry ingredients until well blended.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients - honey, vinegar, oil and water.
  4. With the mixer slowly running, pour in the wet ingredients. Then, mix on medium speed for 3 minutes.
  5. Using an ice cream scoop, scoop even balls of dough onto a wax paper lined cookie sheet. Take each ball and carefully form into a bagel shape. (You can grease your hands with vegetable shortening or spray your hands with cooking spray, if the dough is too sticky). Place the formed bagels on the cookie sheet. Allow several inches in-between each one, for rising. Repeat with remaining dough.
  6. Turn off the oven. Place the cookie sheet in the warm oven, and allow bagels to rise for 35-40 minutes, or until they have really puffed up.
  7. While the bagels are rising, fill a large pot 3/4 full with water. Bring to a rolling boil, and add 1 Tbsp of molasses to the water. The molasses will create a nice chewy outside to the bagel.
  8. Once you remove the bagels from the oven and are ready to boil them, preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  9. Gently place one bagel at a time in the boiling water. Boil on one side for 30 seconds, flip the bagel, and boil it for another 30 seconds (I like to use a large, slotted spoon for this). Remove bagel from boiling water, and place on a cooling rack that has been placed over a towel. Repeat with remaining bagels.
  10. Place boiled bagels on a cookie sheet coated with cooking spray.
  11. Bake bagels in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until they are nice and golden brown. Remove from oven, and allow to cool on a cooling rack for 10 minutes before eating. You can eat the bagels warm, or allow them to cool completely before storing in an air-tight bag. To make ‘day old’ bagels taste as good as fresh, simply microwave for approximately 20 seconds. These also freeze VERY well! Wrap individually in plastic wrap and place in a zip-lock bag. Remove plastic wrap, and microwave for 1 minute to re-heat.

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Monday, October 20, 2014

Nutella Rice Crispy Treats:

So I went to make one of my favorite desserts the other day, and then realized I was out of corn syrup. 
Being VERY hungry for the chocolate/peanut butter combo, I started looking for alternatives! I have seen so many different rice crispy treat recipes floating all over pinterest, and this was one of them. Now, I'm not the biggest fan of Nutella, but my sister, Kelley, LOVES it, so I decided to give them a try!
They turned out really great and I was super happy with them!
Plus, it's a no-bake recipe, so it's perfect if you don't want to stand in a hot kitchen all day!
Hope you give them a try! 

4 tblsp. butter
1 (10 oz.) package miniature marshmallows
3/4 cup Nutella
1/4 cup peanut butter
2 tblsp. cocoa powder
6 cups rice crispy cereal

Melt the butter in a large saucepan, over medium heat. Add marshmallows, Nutella and peanut butter. Cook until marshmallows are melted and mixture is smooth and creamy, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in the cocoa powder. 
Place rice crispy cereal in a large bowl. Pour marshmallow mixture over cereal. Stir until well mixed and evenly coated. 
Spread the mixture into a greased 9x13-inch baking dish and pat out evenly.
Refrigerate until cool. Cut in half lengthwise and remove from the pan onto a cutting board. Using a large knife or pizza cutter, slice into long strips or squares. Store in an airtight container.

-These do not have to be stored in the refrigerator.
-I've not tried it yet, but the original recipe said to make these with Cocoa Rice Crispies for an extra chocolatey flavor!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Freezing Cookie Dough:

There are few things that are better than a fresh, chocolate chip cookie!!
But sometimes, you just don't have time or energy to mix up a batch, bake them AND clean up the mess!

When we go on vacation, we always cook in our condo, rather than eating out every meal. We generally make cookies to take with us, but after a few days, they just don't taste as good as fresh ones!
I had seen this idea with other cookies before, and running low on time I decided to give it a try. It was so easy to do, and they turned out SO good! We had fresh cookies whenever we wanted, not to mention cookie dough (I think this was the main reason everyone liked the idea!!). 
It's so easy to make a bunch to have in the freezer, and then bake as many was you want, whenever you want!!
I hope you give them a try!!

Prepare your cookie dough according to the directions.
You can use any recipe you want/have or click HERE for my recipe.

Using a cookie scoop, scoop out the dough and place the balls on a wax paper lined cookie sheet.

Freeze for at least 2 hours, or until completely frozen. 
Remove from the cookie sheet and place in a gallon, zip-lock bag. 
Return to the freezer until ready to use!

To Bake:
Place desired number of cookies on a cookie sheet(s).
Let them sit at room temperature while your oven pre-heats to 375 degrees.
Bake for 8-12 minutes or until light golden brown.

-Because the cookie dough is frozen, it might take a little longer to bake than usual.
-I use silver, air-bake cookie sheets. I tried them on a darker cookie sheet, and the cookies had a tendency to get really dark on the bottom before they were actually baked. The silver cookie sheets worked fine.
If your cookies are dark on the bottom, either let the cookie dough thaw completely before baking, or lower your baking temperature (between 325 degrees and 350 degrees). It really just depends on your cookie sheets and your oven.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Chicken-Bird Salad:

I love this card!
Every time I see it, I just have to laugh!
I couldn't figure out what to name this recipe, until I saw this!

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago, on a night that we really didn't feel like cooking anything, we had some leftover shredded chicken in the fridge. We mixed together this quick chicken salad and it was SO, SO good! My mom and brother didn't really care for it, because they don't like relish, but me and my sisters LOVED it!!
We had it with plain potato chips, but you could certainly eat on a sandwich or however you like.
I hope you try it out!

{Sorry for the terrible picture! It tasted great, though!}

2 cups shredded, cooked chicken
1/3 cup mayonnaise (we use miracle whip)
1 tblsp. zucchini relish

Mix altogether and chill until ready to serve!

-You may want more or less mayo, depending on your preference.
-This would be a great use of a rotisserie chicken. I also like to just cook some chicken breasts in a crock-pot on high for a few hours, and then shred it up once it's cooked. You don't need to add any water to the crock pot while the chicken cooks. There's enough juices in the chicken and it makes it taste roasted instead of boiled.

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Monday, September 29, 2014

BBQ Bacon Burger:

I know that grilling seasoning is definitely winding down, but we just recently put a roof over our deck, so we are loving being able to grill during whatever weather!
I love a good cheeseburger, and this was a really nice twist! I'm not a huge bacon lover, but it gave it a really nice flavor and helped to hold everything together.
I hope you try them out!

1 pound ground beef
1 & 1/2 tsp. steak seasoning (or seasoning salt)
1 & 1/2 tsp. dried minced onion
3 tblsp. bacon bits
1 tblsp. mayonnaise (we use miracle whip)
1 tblsp. Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ Sauce
Hamburger buns
Toppings of your choice

In a medium bowl, mix together ground beef, seasoning, onion, bacon bits, mayo and BBQ sauce.
Measure out 1/3 cup portions, and shape into patties. Grill burgers on medium-high heat for 5-7 minutes on each side or until done. Serve with your favorite toppings!

-You can mix together equal amounts of Mayo and BBQ Sauce for a yummy topping in place of ketchup.

Adapted from: Six Sisters Stuff

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Monday, September 22, 2014

Crispy Oven Roasted Potatoes:

I don't know anyone who doesn't love a good serving of crispy, roasted potatoes. My dad can make the BEST fried potatoes in a skillet, but it's sort of a hit and miss thing with me - I never know if they'll turn out or how long it might take them! I've seen lots of tips on how to make the perfect, crispy, roasted potatoes, and some of them did help, but nothing really worked all that great. 
I stumbled across this recipe and it had a few tips that I had never even heard of, so I decided to give it a try. And I'm pleased to say that it works SO well!!!! They were crispy, yet didn't burn to the pan, and didn't take an hour to make! 
I've made them several times and my whole family loves them! 
I hope you will give them a try!

3 lbs. potatoes
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 & 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
Salt and Pepper to taste
5 tablespoons canola oil 

Garlic Dressing (optional):
1 & 1/2 tablespoons butter, softened
2 - 3 teaspoons minced garlic (depending on how garlic-y you want it)
2 teaspoons dried parsley
1/8 teaspoon grated lemon zest

Place 2 large rimmed baking sheets in the oven. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Meanwhile, wash the potatoes and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Place the potatoes on a kitchen towel and pat dry, if they are very wet. Place potatoes in a large bowl that can seal. Add the cornstarch, garlic powder and desired amount of salt and pepper. Seal the bowl tightly with a lid and shake until potatoes are evenly coated. Remove baking sheets from the oven, and carefully divide the oil between the two baking sheets. Tilt the sheets to evenly coat with the oil. Divide the potatoes between the two baking sheets (preferably to a single layer). BE CAREFUL as you pour the potatoes onto the baking sheets, as the oil will be hot by now, and it might splatter a little bit. Bake for 20-25 minutes and then stir the potatoes. Return to the oven and bake an additional 15-20 minutes, or until they are as crispy as you want them. Mix together the dressing ingredients, if desired. Pour over the potatoes and mix until well combined. Serve! 

-My family's new #1 favorite meal is these potatoes in place of the baked potatoes in Taco Baked Potatoes. It tastes SO good!!! We leave out the garlic dressing, though!
-There are a few things here that are super important:
1. Leave your baking sheet in the oven until you are ready to put the potatoes on it! It makes all the difference in the world!
2. The drier your potatoes are, the crispier they will get.
3. The cornstarch is what totally makes it. It absorbs all the moisture that the potatoes release while they are baking.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Crock-Pot Apple Pie:

When I started figuring a few things out and actually making some gluten-free dishes that were enjoyable as well as edible, so many people kept telling me that I should make a cookbook.
After a while, I actually did look into it and consider it, but nothing stood out to me. My photos are nowhere near good enough for a cookbook (nor my recipes for that matter), I would have to put out SO much money to even start (they don't grow money trees where I live), and then the book itself would cost a fortune, and I definitely didn't want that!
With the type of person I am, and how you have to cook to be gluten-free, I was always experimenting and changing recipes. To re-publish a cookbook everyone year or so, was going to cost even MORE money!
I really have no clue what gave me the idea to start a blog, and I was pretty nervous about it, because I had NO clue what I was doing!! A year and half, 200+ recipes later - I still don't know what I'm doing, but I'm enjoying it, and I can change the recipe everyday if I want!!!

So I said all that to preface this - I've had this recipe on the blog for a while now, but I have changed it up a little (surprise, surprise!) the last few times I've made it, so I wanted to share with you the "new and improved" version!!
This is such an easy recipe to make, yet we hardly have any leftovers!
I think that's how it usually works - the dishes you slave over for hours, people can take or leave. But if it only takes a few minutes to throw together, everyone loves it!!
I hope you try it and enjoy it as much as we do!

Minister's Delight Recipe

1 box BettyCrocker Gluten-Free White cake mix (or cake mix of your choice)
1 stick (8 tblsp.) butter, melted
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional
2 cans of Apple Pie filling

Spray the inside of your slow-cooker with non-stick cooking spray. Add the pie filling and spread it out so it's even across the bottom of the slow-cooker. In a medium size bowl, mix together the cake mix, melted butter, brown sugar and nuts. Mix until well combined (this should be moist, but very crumbly). Sprinkle over the top of the pie filling. Cover and cook on high for 2-3 hours (longer is always better). Serve as is or with a dollop of whipped topping or a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

-You can use any brand of cake mix you like. I've not found a better tasting "gluten-free" mix than the BettyCrocker, but if you have one you like, you can definitely use that instead!
-You can change up the kind of cake mix and pie filling. I have seen cherry pie filling with a chocolate cake mix. Get creative!!
-Although Apple is by far my favorite, I've also used Blueberry pie filling, and it was very good!