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?

 

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Mousse Pie

Last week I wrote about the Nutella and peanut butter smoothie my kids enjoyed making. This week it is another chocolaty peanut butter concoction, but this time a truly delectable and yet super easy to make dessert! This is one of my husband’s favorites so I named it after him 🙂

Tim’s Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Mousse Pie

Ingredients

½ cup of heavy cream

8 ounces of mascarpone

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1/3 cup peanut butter

1 1/3 cups heavy cream

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 Tablespoons confectioners’ sugar

6 ounces of chocolate chips

1 pre-made chocolate cookie crust (I like the Mid-el Gluten free crust)

Directions

Chill metal bowl for whipped cream. Whisk together ½ cup of heavy cream, mascarpone, confectioners’ sugar and peanut butter in another bowl. Then fold in the chocolate chips. In the chilled bowl add the remaining heavy cream, vanilla and confectioners’ sugar and mix on medium speed until soft peaks form when you take the whisk out. Fold ½ of whipped cream into peanut butter until combined. Fold the other half in. Pour mousse mixture into the crust and chill in the fridge for about 2 hours.

This is so simple to make! It would be great for Father’s Day, a 4th of July barbecue or any day really. What is your favorite dessert to make?

This site has affiliate links to help support the blog, but as usual, I only link to items I love myself!

 

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?

Boston Cream Pie Cake

The complaint most often heard about gluten-free cakes is that they are too dry and crumbly. To combat this, whenever I use a gluten-free cake mix I make these changes:

  • Use milk instead of water, if the instructions call for water
  • Use melted butter instead of oil, if the instructions call for oil
  • Add an extra egg
  • Add ½ cup of melted white chocolate

With these changes, you can serve cake to those who are not gluten-free and they will never know! Betty Crocker, Wegmans and King Arthur are my go to gluten-free cake mixes.

Boston Cream Pie Cake

Ingredients

1 yellow cake mix, prepared according to package with my changes noted above

1 package of vanilla instant pudding, prepared according to package pie filling instructions (for Jello Instant pudding this means, using 1 ¾ cups of milk instead of 2 cups)

1-16 ounce container of chocolate frosting (Pillsbury is gluten free)

Directions

Prepare cake using two 8 or 9 inch rounds. Make pudding and place in fridge to set. Once cake is cool and pudding is set place one of the rounds on a serving platter and top with the pudding.

Place second round on top and then cover completely with the chocolate frosting.  Keep in the fridge until ready to serve.

This is a great dessert to entertain with, easy enough for your kids to help with and absolutely delicious!

If you need more ideas to feed your sweet tooth, check out some of my favorite dessert recipes.

Gluten-Free Crispy Treats

Raspberry Lemon Tiramisu

Baked Alaska

Baked Alaska

Check one item off my 2017 Cooking Bucket List! For Valentine’s Day I made Baked Alaska for my family. It is definitely old fashioned and definitely delicious! I scoured the internet and my cookbook collection for recipes to learn the process. Allrecipes.com never fails to provide good recipes, so I used this recipe to make sure I got the meringue right.  Some use pound cake and sorbet and bake the meringue while others use sponge cake and ice cream and use a torch on the meringue. The thought of putting ice cream in the oven, made me nervous, so I decided to go the torch route. Plus that is more fun!

Baked Alaska

Ingredients

1 gallon of Hood Patchwork ice cream

1 box of gluten free chocolate cake mix, plus an extra egg (I like Wegmans GF chocolate cake mix)

8 egg whites

1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/8 teaspoon of salt

1 cup of sugar

Directions

Take the gallon of ice cream out to soften, about 10 to 15 minutes. Prepare a medium sized bowl by lining with plastic wrap, wax paper or parchment paper and spray with non-stick spray. Press the ice cream down into the bowl and cover. Freeze for at least 4 hours.

Make 8 inch round cake according to instructions, adding the extra egg. Cool the cake and cut to size of the ice cream in the bowl if needed. Press cake onto the bottom of the ice cream. Cover and freeze for another 4 hours or overnight. About 10 minutes before you are ready to serve, take the bowl of ice cream and cake out of the freezer and make the meringue. Add the remaining ingredients to a mixing bowl. Whip until stiff peaks form. Turn the bowl with ice cream and cake onto a plate and take the bowl and wrap or paper off.

Frost the ice cream with the meringue. Take a culinary torch and run it over all the meringue until toasted. Serve immediately. Freeze the leftovers.

It was much easier to make than I thought. It does take planning, however. I froze the ice cream in the bowl and made the cake one night. The next morning (day of service) I cut the cake to fit the ice cream and put back in the freezer until after dinner, when I finished it with the meringue.

Working my way through my bucket list. I found cornish game hens on sale this week and put them in the freezer, so a fancy dinner where we will each have our own “little chicken” according to my kids, is coming soon 🙂 What is on your cooking bucket list? What would you love to cook?

For the Love of Chocolate

Having celiac disease or a family member with celiac disease you have to learn how to bake and create desserts that everyone will enjoy if you want dessert. I have discovered how lucky we are that there are so many gluten-free prepared options now! Now, I love to bake from scratch when I can, but that is not always possible. This pie recipe, is one of the easiest desserts to make. It is a great base that you can change as you like. Use pistachio or cheese cake pudding instead of chocolate. The options are endless!

Chocolate Pudding Pie 

Ingredients

About 6 ounces of milk chocolate chips

1 prepared graham cracker pie crust (my favorite is Mi-Del’s Gluten Free crust)

2 packages of Jello instant pudding (I like to use 1 white chocolate and 1 chocolate fudge)

3 ½ cups of milk

Optional strawberries or chocolate sprinkles on top for decoration.

Directions

Melt the chocolate chips in a small bowl in the microwave. Heat for 30 seconds, remove and stir. Repeat until chocolate is melted. Pour chocolate into pie crust and spread to cover. Place in the refrigerator to chill.

In the meantime, prepare each package of pudding according to pie instructions (which means 1 ¾ cups of milk per packet of instant pudding). Take crust out of fridge and pour about 1/3 of white chocolate pudding, then 1/3 of the chocolate fudge in the center and lightly shake the pie, tapping it on the table to spread out the pudding. Repeat until all pudding is used (or just pour in one and then layer the other pudding). Leave as is or top with sprinkles or strawberries. Let chill for at least 1 hour.

Valentines Day is approaching and I’ve been testing some tantalizing chocolate recipes! Stay tuned for my Boston Creme Pie Cake! This Raspberry Lemon Thyme Tiramisu is decadent, light and also perfect for a romantic dinner. What is your favorite romantic dessert?

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Raspberry Lemon and Thyme Tiramisu

Fancy dessert alert! It looks fancy, tastes light and delicious, yet is very easy to make. You can make it beforehand and bring with you wherever you are going or if you are hosting it would look beautiful on your holiday table.

Raspberry Lemon and Thyme Tiramisu

Ingredients

8 ounce tub of mascarpone

1 cup heavy whipping cream

Zest of 1 lemon

¼ cup of powdered sugar

½ cup of thyme simple syrup (1 cup sugar and 1 cup of water brought to a boil with 3 sprigs of thyme, cook for 5 minutes and allow to cool. Store in fridge.

1-5.3 ounce package of Scharr gluten free lady fingers (or your favorite)

1 dry pint of raspberries (any berries really would work)

¼ cup of melted chocolate chips, optional.

Directions

Mix (with an electric mixer) mascarpone, whipping cream and lemon zest until combined. Add the powdered sugar and mix until fully combined. Put 1/3 of the cream mixture on the bottom of a small glass dish (I use a rectangular 6 cup -1.5 liter, pyrex dish). Dip each lady finger in the simple syrup and place a layer of them on the cream. Place a layer of the raspberries over the lady fingers. Repeat. On final layer of raspberries add the final 1/3 of the cream and then top with more fresh raspberries.

Optional: melt the chocolate chips in the microwave and then drizzle on top of the raspberries.

The simple syrup is also useful for cocktails. Most brands of Limoncello are gluten free, but check with the company to make sure if you are making this for an adult with celiac disease.

Lemon Thyme Martini

Ingredients

1 1/2 ounces of Thyme simple syrup

3 ounces of Limoncello

3 ounces of Vodka

Directions

Pour into a cocktail shaker over ice. Shake and pour into a martini glass. Garnish with a sprig of thyme.

Tis’ the season! Enjoy this twist on tiramisu. More than half way through this month of posts. Hopefully there have been some recipes that you all have enjoyed. If you have made something, let me know how it turned out! I would love to hear about it!

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