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?

Ice Cream!

There is not much better than an ice cream sundae! Ice cream is also one of the easiest desserts for a crowd. You can make an ice cream sundae bar as fancy or as basic as you want. Make your own fudge sauce or use the bottle of Hershey syrup that you already have in the fridge. Cut up some bananas or just put out a jar of maraschino cherries. Make your own whipped cream or buy a can of it.

Whipped cream is something I love to make. Don’t get me wrong, we buy the Redi-Whip cans sometimes (they are gluten-free!) and have been known to spray it into an open mouth 😉 but I LOVE fresh whipped cream. It is very easy to do.

Fresh Whipped Cream

Ingredients

1 pint of whipping cream

2 Tablespoons of confectioners sugar

1 teaspoon of vanilla

Directions

Place metal mixing bowl in fridge the morning you want to make whipped cream. Take out when you are ready to mix. Pour entire pint of whipping cream into bowl. Start whipping. When it is frothy, add confectioners sugar and vanilla. Whip until stiff peaks form.

Put the bowl out with your other sundae toppings, fudge, sprinkles, cherries and an assortment of ice cream flavors. For our holiday dessert we had Hood Peppermint Stick, Vanilla and Fenway Fudge (all gluten free).

Whether you are running around returning things, doing more shopping or relaxing around the house, this is a fun way to do dessert! Especially would be fun for a kids party. A dessert both kids and kids at heart will love!

 

More Holiday Treats and Sweet Breakfast Idea

There are many holiday treats that can be made naturally gluten free and there are those that need to be adapted. These sweet holiday recipes are ones that I have adapted because my kids love them!

My son can clear a whole plate of pancakes in seconds. He is a pancake vacuum. He has been since before his celiac disease diagnosis, so I had to find a way to continue to make pancakes for him.

Pancakes can be an easy breakfast for Christmas morning. Make them the day before or several days ahead and freeze and just reheat in the toaster, toaster oven or regular oven. This recipe for Whole Wheat Buttermilk pancakes from Cooking Light has been my go to pancake recipe for years. I have adapted it to be gluten free and change the flavoring according to season. So for Christmas it is Gingerbread pancakes!

Gingerbread Pancakes

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups of Cup4Cup GF flour (substitute your favorite flour)

4 Tablespoons brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon fresh nutmeg

1 1/2 cups milk + 1 Tablespoon white vinegar (or 1 1/2 cups buttermilk)

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 Tablespoon vegetable oil

3 eggs

2 1/2 Tablespoons molasses

Directions

Mix dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Mix wet ingredients together in another bowl that is easy to pour. Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Let it rest for about 10 minutes. Cook on a griddle set at 375 degrees or a pan on medium high heat.

I serve it with maple syrup. You can add come whipped cream and strawberries to make it a festive holiday breakfast.

Now if that isn’t enough sweetness for you, here is another holiday treat idea. I have been making these pretzel kiss sandwiches for years! Even BGF (Before Gluten Free). I first got the idea from Cookies and Cups. A minor substitution is all it takes to make this treat safe for you, your family or friends who have celiac disease. Use gluten free pretzels. That is it. Hershey kisses (plain milk chocolate) are gluten free.

Pretzel Kiss Sandwiches

Ingredients

1-8 ounce bag of Snyders Gluten Free Mini Pretzels (need about 160 pretzels)

2 – 12 ounce bags of Hershey Kisses (won’t need all the kisses, but probably about 80)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Place parchment paper on 2 cookie sheets. Unwrap about 80 Hershey Kisses. Lay out one layer of pretzels on each cookie sheet and place a Hershey Kiss on top of them. Place in oven for 2 minutes. Take out and let rest for 1 minute then top each with another pretzel.  Allow to cool. Keep in an airtight container.

Tomorrow I’ll continue with some savory dishes for your holiday parties! Here are some other sweet ideas:

Raspberry Lemon and Thyme Tiramisu

Gluten-free Crispy Treats for the Holidays

A sweet ending to the meal and sweet beginning to the face of Mamma’s Cooking

Gluten-Free Holiday Treats

Gingerbread Cookies

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gluten-Free Holiday Treats

As I have already shared how I adapted my Gingerbread Cookie recipe, now on to some other festive holiday treats. Sugar Cookies and fudge are favorites in our house. As with the gingerbread cookies, after my son’s celiac disease diagnosis, we wanted to find a way to continue our tradition of decorating cookies and enjoying plates of fudge and cookies during the holidays.

For the sugar cookies I have used King Arthur’s Gluten Free Baking Mix. There is a recipe on the back of the box for sugar cookies. I have used that for the last 2 years with great success, for gluten and gluten-free eaters alike. I keep it simple and use already made frosting (Pillsbury is gluten free). I may try a royal icing this year so I can actually stack cookies 🙂 If anyone knows of a good one, let me know!

Fudge is one of my favorite treats. I’m actually not a huge sweets person, but I love fudge in very small doses. Chocolate fudge, peanut butter fudge, caramel fudge, really any kind of fudge. I discovered this super easy recipe many years ago. You can make many variations.

Easy Fudge

Ingredients

3 Cups of your favorite chocolate chips (I like to use milk chocolate)

1 – 14 ounce can of sweetened condensed milk

1  teaspoon of vanilla

pinch of salt

Directions

Line an 8-inch pan with wax paper. In a large bowl combine all the ingredients and microwave for 1 minute. Take out and stir. Microwave for 15 more seconds and stir again. Repeat until melted. Pour into lined pan and refrigerate to cool. Once cool, cut into squares. Keep in an airtight container in your fridge.

There are many ways to change this basic recipe. After the mixture is melted, mix in about 1/2 cup of your favorite chopped nuts, crushed candy canes or crushed Heath Bar.

Add these two treats to your holiday plate and be ready for friends or family dropping by or bring as a hostess gift. I also bring some along in a separate container for my son when we go to holiday parties, so he can have some safe treats to eat.

More good food that is gluten free coming up every day in December! Let me know if there is something you would like to see.

Past post that will also be a good addition for your holiday treat plate:

Gluten-free Crispy Treats for the Holidays

Gluten-free Crispy Treats for the Holidays

Even though there are more and more gluten-free options on the market, there are some holiday treats that I have made for years that we want to continue to enjoy. Luckily some of the key ingredients are already gluten free: Hershey kisses, Nestle Chocolate chips, (some) candy canes, Chex cereal and more.

Crispy treats are a quick and easy dessert. They are also a blank canvas to make as simple or as fancy as you like.

Festive Crispy Treats

crispy-bar

Ingredients

3 Tablespoons of unsalted butter

1 -10 ounce bag of mini marshmallows

2 cups of Chocolate Chex

2 cups of Cinnamon Chex

2 cups Rice Chex or Wegman’s Crispy Rice Cereal

Directions

Microwave butter and marshmallows in a large bowl for one minute and stir. Microwave for 30 seconds more and stir. Microwave more at 10 second intervals until marshmallows are melted. Once all the marshmallows are melted add cereal. Stir and put into a buttered casserole dish and cool. Cut into bars and serve.

chex-bars

TIP: Add a cup of chocolate chips, use all rice Chex or use colored marshmallows.

These are treats that even skeptical, gluten loving family members and friends will love! More treats to come as we get closer to the holidays.

Past holiday treat post (Remember posts before April 2014 make sure you use gluten free ingredients or email me if you need help adapting a recipe!)

Getting ready for the holidays

 

Getting kids into the kitchen

Finding time to blog is proving to be harder than finding time to cook lately. Whether its dealing with sick kids, sick Mamma or Daddy, long mornings playing outside, working and getting all of our chores done, there always seems to be something more to do. I am trying more and more to get the kids involved in the kitchen, so I can have time to be in there myself. Here are some ideas for how to get your kids to help you cook when you don’t want to kick them out of the kitchen and be on your own 🙂 I tell my kids there is one rule to cooking with Mamma in the kitchen and if they don’t follow it, they don’t get to help – “Listen and do exactly what I say.” This has been surprisingly effective. Karina was kicked out of the kitchen on 2 different occasions and now does exactly what I say, in the kitchen at least.

1. Let them stand next to you and watch. This way while you are cooking, as you are about to do something think about whether or not they can try it and let them try. Even my 2 and half year olds can add a pinch of salt or sprinkle a seasoning that comes out slowly. Break an egg into a dish and let them pour it in. If you need to add water, let them fill the cup and pour it in. It does take a little longer but gives them a great sense of accomplishment.

2. Let them mix. Slowly, slowly, slowly 🙂 Then Mamma has a turn and goes fast, fast, fast. Then its their turn, slowly, slowly, slowly. Mamma’s turn, fast, fast, fast. You get the idea.

3. Let them shake. If you need to coat something, like chicken or vegetables with seasoning, put it in a plastic bag, close it and let them shake it.

4. Let them have a task all to themselves. This can be as easy as have them get their plates (non breakable ones), cutlery, napkins, cups, etc. ready. If they can use the sink without flooding the room, have them wash the vegetables, scrub potatoes or just press the spinner on the salad spinner.

5. Let them press buttons. When using the coffee grinder, blender or food processor let them press the button. Whenever I make smoothies, they know as soon as the mini food processor comes out and clamor all over me to get to press the button. Hold them up and tell them what numbers to press on the microwave.

Use your imagination or just think of things you don’t like doing and realize that now you have someone who will probably love doing it 🙂 Its not always foolproof but, if they have a hand in making it, they are more likely to eat it.

Here is a recipe for my kids’ new favorite lunch or easy dinner:  

Corn pancakes, hot dogs and broccoli with peas:

Ingredients
1 package Jiffy cornbread mix
1 Egg
2 Tbsp of shortening, melted (I used melted butter, since that was all I had in the house)
3/4 cup Milk
Handful of Shredded carrot (or zucchini or broccoli, whatever vegetable you like or just leave it out)
Hot dogs (I use all beef hot dogs, use whatever you like)
Broccoli florets (fresh or frozen, whatever you have. Use any vegetable you like or think your kids might eat)
Peas

Make pancake mix on side according to box (or use your own favorite corn pancake recipe). You can let the kids mix it. Then add in the shredded vegetables if you are using them. Turn your griddle on or whatever you use to make pancakes and spray with cooking spray. Pour about 1/4 cup of mix for each pancake onto the griddle once its hot. Cook the hot dogs however you like to, on the grill, boiled in water, sauteed in pan. Steam vegetables or roast in oven. I like to roast the broccoli for 10-15 minutes after its been tossed in a little olive oil, salt and pepper. This even works with frozen broccoli.

I have been working on some cooking contests, trying to cook some of my Pinterest pins and fine tuning my meal planning. I’ll post more about those in the next couple of months and hopefully will get further along on my bucket list. Enjoy the start of spring!