Monday, August 22, 2011

The Girl Dingman's Red Velvet Cake/Cupcakes (gluten free of course)

A few years ago, my eldest asked for a fancy cake for her birthday. Fancy cake? Aren't all cakes fancy?? ;) After some research and looking at pictures online, she picked red velvet cake. Well, that cake certainly looks fancy! With my favorite gluten free flour in hand, I went to work. It turned out beautifully. It was a gorgeous red color, moist, and delicious! I'd post s picture of it, but my computer has misplaced it's hard drive. :( Flash forward a few years to my soon to be 7 year olds birthday. At her private school, they are allowed to bring a treat to share with their class on their special day. She asked for "that awesome red cake you made". Of course it happened to be a fasting time for us (no meat, dairy, eggs..) so I has to think a wee bit harder on the replacing in the recipe. I mean it's one thing to replace the glutarded flour with a gluten free one; but to replace the eggs and buttermilk was another story. I set out to research how to replace these without messing with a good thing. Hours later, I came up with a battle plan. How were they you ask? Does the fact that the entire K-1st grade class ate them all answer it? ;) ok, ok, so they were awesome! I could'nt believe it! I didn't screw it up! (thank God, because then what would I have told my birthday girl??) Originally this recipe comes to us from the Food Network and a great cook, Paula Deen. I've adapted it to fill our needs (changed the name for my girls too) and here it is with the vegan replacements in parenthesis.

Cake Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups sugar
2 sticks of butter room temp(or 1 cup Earth Balance natural buttery spread-non dairy)
2 eggs (or 3 tsp EnerG egg replacer with 2 Tbl water, mixed)
2 Tbl cocoa powder
2 oz red food coloring
2 1/2 cups Better Batter Flour
1 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk (or cup milk replacement- I like to use coconut milk- with 1 Tbls of vinegar. Let sit for few minutes)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 Tbls vinegar

Icing ingredients:

1 (8 oz) package cream cheese (or tofutti 'cream cheese' substitute)
1 stick butter softened (or 1/2 cup Earth Balance natural buttery spread-non dairy)
1 cup melted marshmallows (beware the pre melted ones have egg whites in it)
1 pound confectioners' sugar (plus some, when doing vegan-for some reason needs more.)


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

In a separate bowl, mix together your flour and salt, set aside. In a mixing bowl, cream sugar and butter, beating until it's fluffy. I like my kitchenAid for all my baking. Add your eggs or pre mixed replacer, one at a time and mix it good after each. In a separate bowl, mix together your food coloring and cocoa; then add it to your fluffy sugar/butter. Add your flour mix and your buttermilk, alternately, to the creamed mixture. Mix in your vanilla. In a small bowl, add your baking soda and vinegar and then add it to your mixture. If you are making cake, pour into 3 (8-inch) round, greased and parchment lined pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until your toothpick, inserted into the center comes out clean. Let sit for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a cooling rack. Cool completely before frosting. If you are making cupcakes, line 2 (12 muffin) muffin tin trays with paper liners. I use a 1/4 cup "ice cream" scoop to fill my tins. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of one comes out clean. Let sit for a few minutes and then take them out and cool completely on racks before frosting.

To melt your own marshmallows, the mini ones are the fastest. I used about 2 cups minis to melt for one. (I was guestimating) I got out a medium sauce pan and sprayed it with Pam, putting it on med/low heat. Pour in your minis and stir continuously till melted and set aside. Cream together your room temperature cream cheese and butter in your mixing bowl. Add your melted marshmallows and sugar and mix until blended and of a good spreading consistency.


Keep fighting the safe food fight!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Learning about food allergies at a young age

Merry Christmas from my family to yours! May your holidays be filled with joy and love!

I'm writing tonight because I received an email today from a friend. Our children go to school together. She asked "R. would like to make a little treat for her friends, and we're wondering if you could okay these ingredients for S." I was immediately struck by the simple sweetness of it. One of my daughter's friends "gets it". She didn't want her friend to feel left out and so she asked her mom to write me. For years I've just sent in comparable things. (That is if I KNEW about it before hand.) Grant it the main things weren't safe, but the simple fact that she was trying to include her friend in the treats was what made me smile. I offered to send in something comparable as usual, but she said not to worry, R. would make sure that S. could have it. Teaching them young to learn about the importance of food allergies.... :)

Just and FYI the list was as follows: Rice Krispies (not safe, malt flavoring), Kraft caramels (safe), peanuts (safe), Nestles chocolate chips (safe), Nestles butterscotch chips (NOT safe! btw, I did not know that!!! it has barley protein in it!).

~Keep fighting the safe food fight!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Reese's Peanut Butter Cups... NOT SAFE!

SAY IT ISN'T SO!?! No, really say it isn't so! Please!

Ok, so you can't and neither can I. Unfortunately, today, I found out that it's true. A FB friend, in her research on GF candy, found out that Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and their safety for us GF eaters is not to be. She has contacted Hershey's and they gave her a list of 3 items. She specifically asked about the cups and the lady told her that "if it's not on the list it may contain gluten." Well, I guess it just goes to show you re-reading the labels are a good thing. Companies change their recipes on us. HOW DARE THEY! Don't they realize how many people they are now alienating?? I'm just mad is all. These were one of my children and I's favorites.

As I type this, my friend has posted her "so far" list of candy: Go check it out! :) She'll add to it as she gets more information. Thank you Carla! (!/carla.spacher)

So, now what? Well, I have this WONDERFUL recipe for Peanut Butter Ball Candy (peanut butter balls dipped in chocolate) that are so delish! No, they aren't in the shape of cups but I thought I could just get some mini muffin cups and make them into cups. If there is time this weekend, that will be my project! :) Pictures and recipe to come.

Please pass on this newest "no-no" to any you know that may eat GF. And just remember, ALWAYS check the labels. The little stinkers like to mess with a good thing....

~Keep up the safe food fight!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Flaxseed allergies.....

Since being diagnosed with Celiac, I've become more aware of other food allergies. Not that I wasn't aware before, just more so. I love to bake. I firmly believe that just because you have a food allergy, does NOT mean you can't have good food to eat. It just takes time to tweak recipes to make them good for you. The more people I meet here online, the more allergies to different foods I find. Some that I wouldn't even have thought of. That being said, I've tried in my baking to make sure that at least the friends and family around me can eat what I make no matter what the food allergy.

One of my family members has GI issues that we can't seem to figure out. They have been tested for CD, negative. They are not much of a "go see the Dr." person. So, we do trial and error. Upon returning home from the other night they inform me they've had "gut rot" all night. I sit down at my computer to do some research on food allergy symptoms going by what they ate for dinner (since they were fine before).

One of the things they grabbed while running out the door was one of my fresh baked Pumpkin Muffins. These muffins are vegan. They are egg free, dairy free, gluten free, soy free and corn free. Remembering a reaction they had to a shake they made a few weeks ago.. with flaxseed, I started with that. Did you know that you can have an allergy to flaxseed? I mean, I know people who are allergic to things you wouldn't have thought someone would/could be allergic too. But, flaxseed? It's a great egg re-placer. I use it a lot. I found lots of information on how great this little seed is. But, do you know what else I consistently found? "Flaxseed can also be troublesome for people with diverticulitis, irritable bowel syndrome, and inflammatory bowel disease". Hmmmmm.

Well, today, I'm making my muffins WITHOUT flaxseed. I researched other good egg re-placers and we shall see how they do. I have my good turnouts and I have those that, for lack of better word, suck. I tweak and play with my recipes so that others who don't have the time or who are new to all this don't have to.

~Keep fighting the "safe" food fight!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My girls school is trying to win this contest. Please help out our academy! :) Thanks!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Gotta LOVE Peanut Butter and Chocolate!

For my daughter's 2nd birthday, I wanted her cake to be made of things she loves. Nonnie always asks for Butter "poon" (pb on a spoon) or Butter Samich. She could live off of peanut butter. Then, there's chocolate..... "Chokit, mommy?" "I ah-done, have-a chokit?" So, to honor her love of peanut butter and chocolate THIS is what I made her for her birthday! (it's like having a peanut butter cup~inside out :)

Inside out "Peanut Butter Cup" Cake

2 cups Better Batter (gluten free) flour (sweet rice flour might work just fine too or any GF all purpose flour~ BBF is my fave!!)
1 3/4 sugar
2/3 cup Hershey's baking Cocoa
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup milk
1 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
2 tsp. gf vanilla extract

1 (11 oz) package of Nestle Toll House Peanut Butter & Milk chocolate Morsels (put aside 1/4 cup for cake)
1 (8oz) package cream cheese (softened)
1 tsp gf vanilla extract

3 cups powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 9-inch round cake pans

Combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large mixer bowl. (I love my kitchen aid mixer!!) Add milk, water, oil, eggs and vanilla extract; blend until moistened. Beat for 2 minutes (the batter will be thin). Fold in the 1/4 cup chips. Pour into prepared pans.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the pans on wire racks for about 10 minutes. Invert the cakes onto the wire racks to cool completely. Frost with the Creamy PB/Choc frosting between layers and on top and side of cake.

PB/Chocolate Frosting
Microwave remaining morsels in a in a microwave safe bowl on Med/High (70%) power for 1 minute; stir. Microwave at additional 10 - 20 second intervals, stirring until smooth. Beat cream cheese, melted morsels, and vanilla extract in a small mixer bowl until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the powdered sugar.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Muffins

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Muffins
1 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/3 cup water
1/2 cup canola oil (if you double apple sauce works for 1/2c fine)
2 TBSP ground flax seed
1 tsp vanilla
1 2/3 cup Rice Flour (I use sweet rice flour or better batter flour)
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup Enjoy Life Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips
Cinnamon and Sugar mix
Preheat oven to 350*F

Spray a non stick muffin tin well with nonstick spray or line with muffin papers and spray them with nonstick spray. set aside.

Put pumpkin, water, oil, ground flax seed, & vanilla in your heavy duty mixer and mix until well blended.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, and soda, cinnamon, & nutmeg. Add slowly to the pumpkin mixture and mix until will blended. Fold in chips.

Spoon batter into tins distributing evenly to make 12 muffin. Sprinkle top with cinnamon sugar.

Bake for 30-35 min or until knife comes out clean. let cool for five minute until eating.
~My family loves these so much that I have to make a double batch every single time! Even my sister in law from next door knows when I'm making these and comes a knockin :) ENJOY!