Thursday, July 29, 2010

Rhubarb Muffins

My mom has a number of rhubarb plants and I enjoy making different desserts with it.


3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp soda
1 egg
1+ cup rhubarb
1/2 cup oil
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup nuts
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla

Streusel Topping

1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Mix muffins until just moistened, don't overmix.  Sprinkle with streusel topping.  Bake 30 minutes at 325 degrees.  I used muffin/cupcake liners.  If not using those grease muffin tin.  Makes about 12-14 muffins.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Purple Velvet Cake

I saw a blue velvet cake not long ago and thought I should use my favorite color: PURPLE!  The only thing I would change next time is less coloring.  I used 1 oz and it was too dark.  It was hard to take a picture to get the color to show up.  Enjoy!

Purple Velvet Cake

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp cocoa
1/2 to 1 oz violet icing color (I use Wiltons)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
1 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp baking soda

Place racks in oven on the second and fourth levels. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour or place cupcake liners in cupcake pans. Cream butter, sugar, and eggs in a heavy duty mixer.  Add cocoa and food coloring to the creamed mixture. Mix the salt and vanilla with the buttermilk in a 2 cup liquid measuring cup, and add to the batter alternating with the flour. Mix the vinegar and baking soda in a small bowl (it will fizz). Carefully and gently fold this into the batter--DO NOT BEAT!  Place batter in cupcake liners in 1/4 cup measure.  Place in oven and bake for 15 minutes or until the cakes spring back when lightly touched. Remove from the oven and cool on racks for 15 minutes. Remove from pan and place on racks to finish cooling.  Frost with cream cheese frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

 8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 cups powdered sugar

Cream together cream cheese, milk and vanilla until creamy.  Add powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, mixing well with each cup.  Spread on cooled cupcakes.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Pretend Peanut Butter Cookies

Some family members have food allergies, so when I saw the author of a cookbook on tv I was intrigued.  She did a whole cookbook of desserts that are gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free, and nut-free!  The book is called 'allergy-free desserts' by Elizabeth Gordon.  I tried this recipe today and I am impressed!  It really does taste like a peanut butter cookie!!  The only thing I veered from was that I didn't have palm fruit oil shortening so I used vegetable shortening.  She does give addresses where you can order ingredients if they aren't handy where you live.


3 Tbsp water
1 Tbsp ground flaxseed meal
1 1/4 cups Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free All-Purpose Baking Flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 cup organic palm fruit oil shortening
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup sunflower seed butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.  In a cup or small bowl, combine the water and flaxseed meal and allow to thicken for 3 to 5 minutes.  In large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and xanthan gum.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the shortening, sugars, and sunflower seed butter.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then beat in the flaxseed mixture and the vanilla.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl again.  Stir in the dry ingredients until thoroughly combined.

Using a tablespoon scoop the dough and drop 2 inches apart onto the baking sheets.  Press the cookies down with the tines of a fork, dipped in sugar, in the criss-cross pattern characteristic of peanut butter cookies.

Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes or until the edges are golden and the tops no longer look wet.  Transfer the baking sheets from the oven to the cooling racks and cool for 10 minutes, then transfer the cookies directly onto the racks to cool completely.

Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.

Kitchen Help

When I moved into this townhouse the dishwasher had stains from the water.  We live near the Iron Range in Minnesota so hard water deposits and some rust can stain.  So the dishwasher was stained from the water.  My mom gave me this jar of Citric Acid powder and told me to fill the soap dispenser inside with it and run it empty through a cycle.  It made the dishwasher spotless!!  It looks like new!  Now, I'm not sure where people could find this.  I think my father or brother got it from the pharmacy where they work.  It's not a prescription thing so they may be willing to sell a bottle if you asked at the pharmacy window.  So ugly stains in the dishwasher?  Here's your fix!