Posts Tagged 'gluten free'

Pipe Dream #280: To Fix You/Love You – Almond Cookies (GF)

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If you’re looking for an almond fix, please look no further. I’ve done the work for you. These cookies are thrice almond. Paste, extract, slices.

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almond paste 4


almond paste 2



I actually didn’t like this recipe very much. The cookies were far too spread-y because I tried to use 7 ounces of almond paste instead of 10 ounces. Go with the original recipe linked below. And add dark chocolate chips. Because I just think that sounds amazing, yeah?

But if you do make it my way, you can try slicing up the cookies into squares and layering them in glasses with whipped cream before sticking them in the fridge for an hour or two. It made a lovely miniature meringue cake for a gluten-free neighbor.

Trying to love and fix my neighbor,


Almond Cookies

Adapted from King Arthur Flour

7 ounces almond paste (from a can, or learn how to make your own from scratch here)
scant 1 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large egg whites, lightly beaten
1/4 teaspoon gluten-free almond extract
sliced almonds

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Lightly grease two baking sheets, or line them with parchment.

Blend the almond paste, sugar, and salt until the mixture becomes uniformly crumbly; this is best done in a stand mixer. Add the egg whites gradually, while mixing, to make a smooth paste. Stir in the flavorings.

Scoop the dough by heaping tablespoons onto the prepared pans, leaving a few inches in between each, as they will spread quite a bit. Sprinkle with sliced almonds.

Bake the cookies for 15-20 minutes, until they’re golden around the edges. Remove them from the oven, and let them cool on the pan. Once cool, you can slice into prettier squares. I made a dessert for a gluten-free friend by whipping some heavy cream, then layering the cookies and cream. After a few hours in the fridge, it was just like an icebox cake.


Pipe Dream #262: To Keep My Options Open? – Flourless PB Banana Maple Muffins

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Statement of the hour: One great thing about being gluten-free is that you don’t have to be chocolate-free.

Can I get a holler on that?

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I’m not gluten-free, but I have friends that are, and I would feel significantly worse for them if chocolate contained gluten. This recipe contains it AND peanut butter AND muffins, which are two other items that needn’t cause coeliacs regret.

These muffins are a wonder. While not the most traditionally fluffy of muffins, they are extremely moist and flavorful. I was pleasantly surprised–even if I hadn’t underbaked them, I know they wouldn’t have been dry. Plus, I can’t think of anything easier than grinding a few ingredients in a blender to taste (you can play with the sweetener, flavorings, salt, etc.).

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The maple flavoring is optional, as are the chocolate chips. But let’s be honest, when are the chocolate chips ever optional?

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Fabulous food styling by Carica. Endless obsession with chocolate chips on my table by Lauren.


Flourless PB Banana Maple Muffins

Adapted from Averie Cooks

1 medium ripe banana, peeled
1 large egg
heaping 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla extract (I used half vanilla and half maple extract)
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
a pinch salt
heaping 1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray mini muffin tins with non-stick spray, dust with flour, then tap out the excess.
Combine all ingredients except the chocolate chips in a blend and blend until smooth, about 1 minute.Spray a tablespoon measure with non-stick spray and use it to fill each tin about 3/4 full.
Bake for 8 to 9 minutes, or until the tops are set, domed and springy when pressed. The muffin tops will sink as they cool. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove to cool on a wire rack.

DOUBLE BONUS: Humid GF Almond Peach Scones + GF Balsamic Strawberry Mint Scones

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Can you even believe it? Two gluten-free recipes in one post? What es thes? You’re welcome.

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I attended a themed dinner party this summer, hosted by the same dude who put on the fancy science dinner party I attended in the winter. A girl’s got some luck, getting invited to two whole dinner parties. Winner parties.

Anyway, it was full of delectable magical foods (Harry Potter-themed) and crisp drinks (no really, they involved cucumbers), which was good, because it was approximately humidity 100% that day, and I was in no mood to be served less than magical anything.

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I didn’t even want to eat my own paltry contribution to the dinner party, whose only redeeming fpoints were the large chunks of fruit busting out and the fact that they are gluten-free scones. They nearly melted in the damp on the way over. I’m sure they are excellent scone recipes, but I couldn’t enjoy them to the full. Make these in October, when there are leaves on the ground and your shirt isn’t sticking to your back, ok? You’ll be happier.

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I did try making some magic with the balsamic-roasted strawberries, which I paired with mint. How adventurous, right? Actually, it’s a pretty classic flavor pairing, but I didn’t think either flavor came through enough in the scones. It would be sweet to do a really minty scones and then make some sort of roasted balsamic strawberry butter or compote. If you try it, let me know how it goes.



GF Almond Peach Scones

Adapted from Art of Gluten Free Baking

2 cups gluten-free flour flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill GF Baking Blend + a heaping half teaspoon xanthan gum)
2 tablespoons baking powder
4 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 ounces sliced peaches (I used canned peaches)
1/4 teaspoon almond oil (LorAnn’s) or 1 teaspoon almond extract teasfinely

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a large bowl, stir together the dry ingredients. Grate in the cold butter and stir to combine. Stir in the peaches. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, almond flavor and milk. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the egg mixture to flour mixture all at once. Stir together until completely moistened.

Turn out  the dough onto a parchment-covered baking sheet. Press into a 1” thick square and cut into 9 or 16 squares, handling the dough as little as possible. Brush with extra heavy cream and sprinkle with sugar. Place the baking sheet with cut squares in the freezer for 20 minutes before baking. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the bottoms of the scones are golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack.

GF Balsamic Strawberry Mint Scones

Adapted from Joy the Baker and

For the strawberries:

8-ounces medium strawberries, hulled

2 tablespoons maple syrup

1 tablespoon olive oil

pinch of salt

2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

Place a rack in the center of the oven (or toaster oven) and preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

Cut each strawberry in quarters and place on the baking sheet in a single layer.  In a small bowl, whisk together maple syrup, olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salt.  Whisk together until completely incorporated.  Drizzle the mixture over the strawberries and toss until each strawberry is coated.

Roast strawberries for 20 minutes, then remove to a small bowl with a slotted spoon, draining the strawberries of most of the juice. Let cool.

For the scones:

2 ½ cups gluten-free flour flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill GF Baking Blend + a heaping half teaspoon xanthan gum)
2 tbsp white sugar
tbsp baking powder
tsp salt
½ cup cold butter
roasted strawberries
 tbsp minced pineapple mint (or any kind of fresh mint)
½ cup heavy cream
eggs, at room temperature

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a large bowl stir together the dry ingredients. Grate in the cold butter and stir to combine. Stir in minced mint and the roasted strawberries. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs and the milk. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the egg mixture to flour mixture all at once. Stir together until completely moistened.

Turn out  the dough onto a parchment-covered baking sheet. Press into a 1” thick circle and cut into 8 wedges, handling the dough as little as possible. You can cut those in half if you want to make 16 mini scones. Brush with extra heavy cream and sprinkle with sugar. Place the baking sheet with cut wedges in the freezer for 20 minutes before baking. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the bottoms of the scones are golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack.

Pipe Dream #193: To Be Invited, Not Invited – Gluten Free Chocolate Pecan Florentines

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I have a delicious treat in the form of a delightful dinner party to share with you this week, wherein I will wax on about being invited as opposed to being “invited” (apologies in advance). But before I do, I would like to share my only contribution to said dinner party, as the other items on the menu will clearly outshine my miniscule offering.

I do not feel bad about my miniscule offerings at all. Trust me, you will understand when you know. This dinner party. Heavens.

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Spoiler alert: Don’t read this next unless you want to know what I ate for dinner the other week, which I will also tell you later this week. What’s that? You don’t care what I ate for dinner the other week? You should care. Because I ate


Let that sink in.

Ok. I know.

And what is the only worthwhile accompaniment to toasted marshmallow besides everything? That’s correct, Senator. Chocolate.

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I wanted to make something gluten-free, because there were some GF attendees, and these florentines were the perfect recipe. Elegant, interesting, and made with gluten-free flour.

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Traditional Italian florentines are made with almonds and are sandwiched together with tempered dark chocolate. The cookie batter flattens out significantly and bubbles up, creating a crunchy, buttery shell. This recipe substituted the almonds for pecans (which weren’t overpowering by any means, so if you don’t like pecans, no big), and instead of making cookie sandwiches, I opted to shape them into little serving bowls for the ice cream, kind of the same way you might shape brandy snaps.

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This was Attempt #1 at shaping the florentines. I let the cookies cool for a couple minutes on the baking sheets and then wrapped them around the metal handle of my whisk, pinching the ends to seal. They just slide right off like magic! I might have left them on a bit longer, though. As you can see, they are a little deformed.

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Attempt #2 was more successful. I flipped little mise en place bowls, and draped individual cookies over them, pressing down the sides to create little cups for the ice cream.Next time, I would drape the cookies over on their other side, so the pretty, bubbly side to the cookies would be more visible when they are flipped upright.


This is an easy way to add some class to your next ice cream sundae party. You should have one of those. It would be impossible to fail, and it’s practically summer right now.

Don’t mind me,


Gluten-Free Chocolate Pecan Florentines

Adapted from gluten freek

1/2 cup gluten-free flour blend (I used Bob’s)

2 handfuls pecans, finely ground in a food processor (or 3/4 cup pecan flour)

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

1/3 cup brown sugar

4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) butter

1/4 cup light corn syrup

2 tablespoons milk

chocolate chips, if desired

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line two cookie sheets with parchment.

Combine the flour, pecans and cocoa in a small bowl, mixing well to get as many clumps out as possible. I found that my pecans were a little sticky.

Combine the sugar, butter, corn syrup and milk in a small saucepan. Stir occasionally over medium-high heat until the mixture comes to a boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the flour mix well so all the clumps are incorporated and the mixture is smooth.

Drop by the teaspoonful onto the baking sheets leaving two to three inches between each cookie to allow for spreading. Bake for 10 minutes. While the cookies are baking, set out little mise en place dishes or other little bowls upside down.

Remove the sheets from the oven and let the cookies cool for a couple minutes. When the cookies are cool enough that you can lift them without them stretching, drape each cookie over the little dishes you have set out and press down the edges, creating little bowls out of the cookies. Alternately, you can wrap each cookie around the end of a wire whisk, sliding them off to make a cannoli-like shell.

Let the cookies cool, then store in an airtight container between layers of parchment.

Pipe Dream #128: To Care About Trifling Details – Gluten Free Berry Trifle

In college I had a few friends who were gluten intolerant, and I know it was the worst not being able to eat the carbs that everyone else did. It was a bit shocking to put myself in their shoes. I could never eat a cupcake again, and since probably 1/3 of my nutrition in college came directly from baked goods made with wheat flour, I would probably have died, not because I wasn’t eating enough, but because killing my sugar addiction would have killed me. Probably.

Since that time, I have been really careful about including gluten-free recipes in my repertoire. It gives me more joy to feed gluten-intolerant people because I know that they are really getting a treat and they know that I care about them. Not everyone remembers to provide a gluten-free option, and many gluten-free recipes are highly average. Not that awareness of the issue in the past few years hasn’t increased the standard of gluten-free baked goods. It definitely has. But still, when you find a gluten free pound cake recipe as good as this one, you’ve gotta share it.

And trust me. This pound cake recipe is a good one. I may never make a regular pound cake again. the edges were delightfully crisp, but not dry. In fact, the thing didn’t dry out, even when the leftover slices sat in the sun for two days.

However, the real reason for making this cake was not so we could all eat cake, bright opportunity though it may be. No, the real reason was so that I could make this berry trifle which had been floating around in my brain. I wanted cake, but gluten-free. I wanted cream cheese, but not frosting. I wanted fresh fruit, not chocolate (wait, what?).

Enter easiest, most impressive party dessert of the century. Pretty, delicious and functional. Functional meaning it stood up to the 100 degree heat. Serious prop-age.

And since I was going for the trifling details on this one, I figured I would dress to match. Why the heck not?

For more gluten free recipes, you can check out my gluten-free dark chocolate cherry cupcakes, or the host of meringues that infest this site.

Infesting in the best,


Gluten-Free Berry Trifle

For the pound cake:

Check out gluten free easily for the recipe.

A couple of additional notes:

-My flour blend was six parts Asian rice flour to 2 parts potato starch to 1 part tapioca starch. You can use whatever blend your heart desires. There are a lot of premixed ones that will work just fine.

-gluten free easily suggests using coconut milk, but I just used whole milk, so you just go ahead and use whatever you want.

For the whipped filling:

8 ounces cream cheese

2 cups (16 ounces) heavy whipping cream

8 tablespoons powdered sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla

Beat eight ounces of cream cheese until soft and workable. Add two cups of heavy whipping cream (I think I may have added a bit more than that), and beat until soft peaks form. Add two teaspoons vanilla extract and eight tablespoons of powdered sugar, and beat until stiff peaks form.

To make the trifle:

berry liqueur (I used some raspberry liqueur we had lying around)

berries (I used strawberries and blueberries)

Brush pound cake with berry liqueur and dice into 1 inch cubes. Wash berries. Slice strawberries vertically.

Cover the bottom of the trifle dish with a layer of the cream mixture. Add a single layer of pound cake cubes, followed by about 1/4 of the cream mixture. Add a layer of berries. Repeat these steps, continuing to layer with different berries, until the trifle dish is filled. Top with remaining cream mixture and decorate with berries.

Chill trifle for at least three hours before serving. It should last up to two days in the fridge before it begins to break down, but I didn’t test this theory, so if it breaks down, I’m really, really sorry. You can complain to me in the comments.

How To Illuminate Your Mind And Bakes

Back when my family got Netflix, we went through a period where we watched all three seasons of Cake Boss in about 3 weeks. (I’ve talked about this before, and made some of the prettiest cupcakes ever.) It was pretty legit. One of the coolest things on that show is how they make everything look so real. They use all kinds of things to achieve different special effects: edible ink, fondant, gum paste. But one of the prettiest things they use is luster dust. My mind was illuminated. I had never seen anything of the kind. It is kind of like loose glitter eyeshadow, really sparkly and brushable. I’ve never tried putting it on my face, but that’s only because it is kind of spendy.

Because this stuff actually costs money, I was a tad miffed when I knocked a significant amount on the floor. I was concerned enough that I spend a good five minutes sweeping it up and putting it back in its minute jar. When it was done, my body was showing the strain; I looked like I had just gotten off a shift at Pier One during the Christmas rush (slightly  pop-eyed, jumping at small movements and full of glitter), but I was soothed. Most of the powder was back in its place.

I bought the color SUPER GOLD with which to test my abilities. I thought it was a bit more yellowy than I would have liked. Perfect for, like, fake pirate gold, not apples, but it was still neat.

You can either brush the dust on dry or mix it with a little vinegar or vodka. Whatever you have on hand is cool. You just need some edible liquid that is going to evaporate pretty quickly leaving the dust behind. Brushing luster dust on dry results in a sheer shimmer, while brushing on wet dust gives you a thicker coat.

A little bit of the vodka went a long way. I didn’t exactly look up how much I was supposed to put in, so it was kind of a guessing game. The paste was tricky because as soon as I thought I had the right consistency for brushing, the vodka would evaporate and I would be left with gummy chunks. Remind me never to say ‘gummy chunks’ again. Anyway, it is pretty much trial and error; I’ll be better next time. To brush it on, I actually did use an eyeshadow brush. Ahem. It’s not like anyone was going to eat this, yeah?

See how funky it looks? I had to put on a couple coats without brushing off the stuff I had already put on. It took forever.

But! It does end up looking like this. I sprinkled some dry dust on the berries and flourless chocolate torte for effect. I think it would be super neat to paint luster dust on frosted sugar cookies or fondant. Let me know if you try it! I would love to see what you can do.

Sometimes I don’t tell people they have unintentional glitter on their faces because I like it so much,


Pipe Dream #64: Um…Chocolate – Flourless Chocolate Torte

I really didn’t know what to call this post except “Chocolate.” This whole recipe is saturated with chocolate. And ok, let’s be real, my whole life is saturated with chocolate. Or at least, I feel that it should be. Can I get an amen?

Also, I make a lot of ‘I feel’ statements. Like, “I’m feeling like you are in a bad mood,” or “I feel that I think that I possibly want to go on a bike ride.” Just thought I would tell you that. Anyway.

Actually, it was my dad’s birthday, so I felt like I should make something that he would like. It wasn’t a hard decision. In my dad’s eyes, chocolate is always a winner. I mean, he can pretend like he’s all healthy eating green shakes in the morning, but we all know where his true heart lies. And can I just say, there is a lot of chocolate in this recipe. You have to go all in and buy 23 whole ounces of the good stuff. But it is worth it, I promise. :]

There is real dark chocolate in the glaze. Also pictured, butter.

There is chocolate in the batter.

There is chocolate lining the very pan in which the cake is baked.

This recipe also includes fewlding in egg whites, which I don’t actually get. Usually, you fold in egg whites because you want your cake or what-have-you to be especially light. This torte is the opposite of especially light; it is like a fudge cake. So I don’t get why you fold in the egg whites, but whatevs. I did it. It turned out fine.

Bonus, this cake has the easiest frosting in the world. Just heat up the chocolate, and pour it over the cake. Ba-am. The golden apples were a little more time-consuming, but I’ll tell you about that some other time, like maybe later this week if I get the time. Hold your breath.

Suffice it to say that this torte was a cinch and my dad totally loved it. Print it, bake it, love it.

I feel,


Flourless Chocolate Torte

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Collection Series, Dessert, by Abigail Johnson Dodge (Simon & Schuster, 2002)

Serves 12-14…depending on how you slice it.

For the torte:

Unsweetened cocoa powder for dusting
15 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
18 Tbs. (2 1⁄4 sticks) unsalted butter,
cut into small pieces
7 egg yolks
9 Tbs. granulated sugar
1 1⁄2 Tbs. dark rum or brewed espresso (optional)
1 1⁄2 tsp. vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
5 egg whites, at room temperature
3 cups raspberries
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting

For the glaze:

1/2 cup butter
8 oz chopped bittersweet chocolate
2 tablespoons light corn syrup


Preheat an oven to 300ºF. Grease a cake pan and dust with cocoa powder.In the top pan of a double boiler or a janky makeshift version of a double boiler. Sometimes I use a regular pan and a glass bowl…gets the job done. Combine the chocolate and butter. Set the top pan over simmering water and melt, then whisk until well blended. Set aside to cool a bit.In a large bowl, using an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat together the egg yolks, 6 tablespoons of the granulated sugar, the rum, vanilla and salt on medium-high speed until pale and very thick, 3 to 5 minutes. Graduallypour in the chocolate mixture and continue beating until well blended.In a deep bowl, using a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium-high speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Make sure your bowl and beaters are very clean. Gradually add the remaining 3 tablespoons granulated sugar and continue to beat until medium-firm peaks form, about 2 minutes. Scoop half of the egg whites onto the chocolate mixture and fold them in gently. Fold in the remaining whites just until no streaks remain, so your cake doesn’t deflate. I find this hard to do without feeling like I’m overdoing it–you’ll probably be fine, though.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread it evenly. Bake until the torte puffs slightly and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out very moist but not liquid, about 40 minutes. This is tricky too, as Abigail warns us not to over-bake. Whatever. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 30 minutes.

Remove the torte from the pan and let it cool completely, then cover and refrigerate until very cold, at least 4 hours or up to overnight.
To glaze the torte, combine butter, cut into 4 pieces, and chocolate in the top of a double boiler. Set over simmering water and melt, then whisk until blended. Remove from the heat and whisk in the corn syrup until smooth and glossy. Set the cold cake on a wire rack over a large plate or baking sheet. Slowly pour the warm glaze over the center of the cake. The glaze should cover the surface evenly, but feel free to help it along to be even. I spent a devil of a time wiping off my cake plate after I glazed it so the excess would look even. No, I’ve never been a perfectionist.

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