Simple Recipe for Simple Syrup

Do you enjoy fun cocktails, flavored iced coffee or tea in the summer? Then you will love this recipe! It is so easy and you get to control the ingredients!

This is a great basic simple syrup recipe that you can add your own flavor to. I like to add basil, rosemary or thyme for an herbed simpled syrup that can be used in a cocktail with limoncello and vodka or in a dessert like my Raspberry Lemon and Thyme Tiramisu. Add a vanilla bean and you can make vanilla iced coffee. Add mint and you can sweeten your iced tea or make a mojito. You can even add fruit and make a blueberry simple syrup to mix with your lemonade.

Simple Syrup

Ingredients

1 cup of water

1 cup of sugar

Directions

Add water and sugar to small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour into a glass container and allow to cool. Cover and keep in fridge for up to 2 weeks.

If you are adding flavors:

Blueberry Simple Syrup: Add about 3/4 of a cup of blueberries with the water and sugar. Follow recipe above and strain blueberries before pouring into container.

Vanilla Simple Syrup: Add a vanilla bean with the water and sugar. Follow recipe above and strain before pouring into container.

Mint, Rosemary, Thyme or basil Simple Syrup:  Add herbs with the water and sugar. Follow recipe above but allow to cool for 5 to 10 minutes in sauce pan then strain before pouring into container.

Your imagination is the only limit! What is your favorite summer drink?

 

Strawberry Sauce

Having different sauce recipes in your repertoire to change up meals and desserts can expand your menus tremendously. Sauces are not just for savory dishes. My strawberry sauce is simple and delicious! Strawberries are so tasty and sweet. My kids love them, so when they are on sale, I buy them up! Often that means that they can start to go bad before we have had a chance to finish eating them. With all the amazing fresh fruit and vegetables coming into season, they are more cost effective and much more abundant. Here is this crazy easy recipe that you can use to top pancakes or waffles, ice cream or yogurt or whatever you like!

Strawberry Sauce

Ingredients

16 ounces of fresh strawberries, sliced

2 Tablespoons of sugar (add ½ Tablespoon at a time and taste because it depends on how sweet your strawberries are naturally)

2 Tablespoons of water

1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar, optional (but I think it adds such a great depth of flavor! Doesn’t taste vinegary)

Directions

Add all the ingredients to a sauce pan on medium high heat on the stove. Stir every couple of minutes until the fruit breaks down and it becomes a sauce, about 15 minutes. Serve warm over pancakes or cool and pour over ice cream or swirl in with yogurt. Can keep in the fridge 3 or 4 days in an airtight container.

You can also make this with blueberries, raspberries or blackberries and just adjust the sugar based on how sweet the fruits are. Don’t let those summer fruits go to waste!

There are just so many uses for this sauce. You can make ice cream sundaes, pour this sauce over gf angel food cake or my biscuits for a version of strawberry shortcake.

What is your favorite summer sauce? How do you use it?

Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffins

When my son was first diagnosed with celiac disease, I thought that meant saying goodbye to all my cookbooks. I definitely have learned that is not the case! So many recipes in my favorite cookbooks (like Mastering the Art of French Cooking) are naturally gluten free or can be adapted. The tricky adaptations come when I want to bake something and can clearly remember what the full gluten version tastes like.

Making these blueberry muffins from the First Edition of McCall’s Cookbook (1963) has been challenging, but I finally got it right! We have been housebound this school vacation week due to one kid with pneumonia, who is luckily on the mend, so the kids wanted to bake. In between marathon games of Monopoly, playing Angry Birds Star Wars on the Ipad and watching many, many movies, this recipe finally came together!

Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffins (adapted from McCalls, First Edition 1963)

Ingredients

1 ¾ cups sifted gluten-free Cup4Cup flour

¼ cup sugar

3 teaspoons of baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg

1 1/3 cup of milk

6 Tablespoons of melted butter

3 eggs, beaten

8 to 10 ounces fresh blueberries, rinsed and dried

Cinnamon sugar, optional for topping (1/4 cup of sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon)

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and either grease muffin tin or line with paper liners. Sift flour, sugar, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Add cinnamon and grate in nutmeg. In another bowl combine milk, melted butter and eggs. Add wet mixture to dry and mix using a fork, just until all dry ingredients are combined. Fold in blueberries. Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, scoop a little less than 1/4 cup of batter into each muffin cup, around 3/4 full. Sprinkle about 1/8 of a teaspoon of cinnamon sugar over each muffin, if you like. Bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes.

These muffins are not very sweet, so the cinnamon sugar on top helps give a little more sweetness to each bite. This usually makes 14 to 15 muffins each time. We made these yesterday and are already down to 5 this morning 🙂 I’ve only had one. These are great to throw in with school lunches or bring as a snack on a road trip.

If you want to try one of my other baking adapations, try these amazing Buttermilk Biscuits! You would never even know that they are gluten free.

I have started quite a cookbook collection, which I keep adding to whenever I go into a consignment shop or get a gift card to Amazon. I love cookbooks. I could sit and read cookbooks all day. What are your favorites?