Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Banana Dream Drops (Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free)

It has been a while.  Yes, it has.  However, I am back and I have some great recipes to share with you!!!

I have been so excited to share this recipe with you, but first let me give you a bit of background.  When we were first married, these cookies were all Dan could think about.  They were undoubtedly his favorite.  When we visited his childhood home, there was always a batch waiting for him and a dozen or so nestled in a gallon sized Ziploc bag ready for the trip home.  I loved the fact that for a couple of weeks after returning home, I didn't have to bake.  With that bag in the freezer, we were set.

But then it happened.  The care package just wasn't enough.  So, one visit a few years later, I was given the "secret" recipe to cookie goodness: Banana Dream Drop Cookies.  Divine!

Over the years, Dan has eaten his share of cookies and has found a few new favorites.  Personally, I haven't met a cookie he didn't like.  Some people are cake people, some pie, but Dan is all cookie.  Not that he would pass up cake or pie, mind you.  

This summer, I came across the recipe and decided to convert it to a gluten free/dairy free version.  It is delicious!  Cinnamon has declared it to be the best cookie ever!  The smile on Dan's face when I surprised him with these cookies was priceless.  Once again, it has regained center stage.

Banana Dream Drops:

2 1/2 cups of gluten-free flour (I use GF Mama's Coconut Blend Flour)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 cup butter (I use Earth Balance to make these dairy free)
1 cup of sugar + 3/4 cup of sugar
2 eggs
1 cup of mashed ripe bananas (about three medium sized bananas)
1 cup semi-sweet or dairy-free chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups of gluten-free corn flakes crushed (I use these)
3/4 cup walnuts finely chopped
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a small bowl combine 3/4 cup of sugar, crushed cornflakes, walnuts, and cinnamon.  Set aside.

In another bowl sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and xanthan gum.  Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, or stand mixer,  begin to cream the butter and sugar by gradually adding the sugar.  Add two eggs and cream well.  Stir in the bananas.  Add the flour mixture a little at a time.  Mix well.  Add the chocolate chips.

Drop a teaspoon sized ball of dough into the bowl of sugar, cornflakes, walnuts, and cinnamon.  Roll to coat and shape into balls.

Bake on a greased cookie sheet for 12-15 minutes.

These cookies are absolutely the best gluten-free cookies we have made.  If you like a soft cookie and you like bananas and chocolate, give this recipe a try.  They freeze well too!

I have been noticing a trend at our house since I have begun making these cookies.  No one touches the last three bananas of the bunch.  Once they are overly ripe someone suggests that they are only good for cookies.  Hmmmm.....I wonder...

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Autumn is Here: Hazelnut White Chocolate Pumpkin Cookies ( DF & GF)

Early this week I began to smell something delicious coming from my kitchen.  The smell of pumpkin was distinct.  Cinnamon was baking up something!

Later, we were all treated to cookies perfect for the Fall season:  Hazelnut and White Chocolate Pumpkin Cookies.  Cinnamon saw a recipe on Pinterest and decided to make some adaptations for us dairy-free, gluten-free folks.  The results were absolutely divine. 

Hazelnut White Chocolate Pumpkin Cookies (DF and GF)

2 1/4 cups of Gluten Free Mama's Almond Blend Flour
1 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup Earth Balance butter
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup pumpkin puree (we use Libby's)
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup chopped hazelnuts
Optional:  finely minced or ground hazelnuts for sprinkling

Pre-Heat oven to 300 degrees

In a small bowl, mix together the flour, xanthan gum, pumpkin pie spice, and baking soda.  Set aside.

In a medium bowl, cream the butter and sugar together using an electric mixer.  Add the pumpkin puree and beat together.  Add eggs and vanilla and continue mixing until incorporated.  With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture until just combined.  Stir in the white chocolate chips and hazelnuts.

Drop rounded teaspoons of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet and sprinkle with finely minced or ground hazelnuts if you desire.  Leave about 2 inches of space between cookies. 

Bake at 300 degrees for 20-22 minutes until set.

These are yummy.  A perfect companion to a cup of tea.  You can find the original recipe here.  We hope you enjoy!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Seasonal Favorite: Zucchini Boats

Do you have zucchini coming out of your ears?  We are always excited when those big green plants start producing because my kitchen starts producing some of our seasonal favorites: zucchini bread, chocolate chip zucchini cookies, and our absolute favorite:  Zucchini Boats!

Ever tried stuffed peppers?  The idea is similar.   These are definitely delicious.  They do take some time to cook, so make sure you are prepared!  The wait is worth it.

Zucchini Boats:

2 pounds of ground meat (I use venison.  You could use beef, pork, or even turkey)
2 large onions diced
6 cloves of garlic minced
1 cup of minced parsley (I use dried parsley if I don't have fresh on hand)
2 cups of uncooked rice
3 Tbsp of olive oil
1 1/2 - 2 tsp salt (I like to use garlic salt)
dash of pepper
2 cans of tomato paste PLUS enough water to make 4 cups of sauce
salt, pepper, seasonings to taste
3-4 Zucchini (medium sized, however larger ones work too.)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Cut Zucchini in half lengthwise after cutting off the ends. Hollow out the seeds to make a boat.  Place in a baking dish (you will probably need two) and season with salt, pepper, and any additional seasonings to taste (I like Italian Seasoning or a basil garlic mix).

In a skillet, brown ground meat, onion, and garlic.  Add parsley and cook through.  Add rice, olive oil, tomato sauce, salt and pepper.  Mix well.

Spoon meat mixture into zucchini boats.  Add water to the bottom of the baking dishes just so it covers the bottom. 

Bake for 90 minutes in a 325 degree oven.

You can easily cut this recipe in half.  We just like the leftovers for lunch :)

The recipes I follow for both the zucchini bread and the chocolate chip zucchini cookies can be found in this cookbook.  We used  Gluten Free Mama's Coconut Blend flour for both recipes.  I tried using coconut oil instead of canola oil for the bread and it was yummy!  We also added df chocolate chips to the recipe. 

Love this time of year!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Spring and a Super Simple Recipe

The first buttercups have arrived!  Spring is here.  Our new chicks are huddled in the barn and these two are snuggled down in the hay, awaiting even warmer weather!

They are small and oh so cute! 

So, spring has sprung.  The pigs have arrived.  Indeed, it is my favorite time of year.  Each day is waiting for me to discover something new.  Like yet another rooster trying to get into my chicken coop.  Believe me, the scary lady running through the barnyard dressed in pink fleece jammies and muck boots is enough to scare anyone.  He hasn't been back.  The other two, just to keep you updated, haven't been spotted for the past week or so.  The red one disappeared first.  Now weeks later the beautiful green one is gone too.  I suspect there are some fat coyotes in the neighborhood.

I wanted to share a super easy and yummy recipe with you today.  It is the perfect combination of simple and delicious. 


Veggies, chopped  (Use what you have on hand.  I have used broccoli, mushrooms, red onion, green, red, yellow, or orange bell peppers, and celery)
Cooked, crumbled sausage or bacon or even chopped ham (Again use what you have on hand!)
Eggs (1for every egg cup you want to make), beaten

Heat oven to 400 degrees.

Grease a muffin tin (I use coconut oil). 
Place chopped veggies and meat in each muffin tin.  Fill the muffin tin about 1/2 full.

Beat your eggs and gently pour them into the muffin tin.  Leave a bit of room to allow you to stir and incorporate the ingredients.

Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

So simple and easy!  These are great for a brunch or special breakfast.  They even freeze well and can then be eaten any old time.  If you are not dairy free, you can even add cheese to the mix. Or try topping them with sour cream and salsa.  The variations are up to your imagination.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Two Guests and a Pot Full of Chili

We raise chickens around here.  We try to avoid roosters.  In the past six years raising fifty or so chickens, we have only ended up with one rooster by mistake.  Just one.  Until this week.   These two just showed up out of the blue.

We have checked with neighbors, but no one seems to be missing these two boys.  Apparently, they think this is home.  They hang out all day around here and don't seem to be in a hurry to leave.  They are beautiful to look at and I like seeing them outside the window.  I even like hearing them crow.  I guess they can stay...for awhile.  As long as they leave the ladies alone!

So...on to the recipe. 

Today was one of those days.  Snowy.  Rainy.  Cold.  Nothing beats homemade soup and bread on one of those days.  So chili and cornbread hit the spot.

I use the Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free Cornbread Mix for my cornbread.  I use almond milk instead of regular milk and olive oil instead of butter to make it dairy free.  It is yummy!  It is definitely a family favorite. 


2 onions chopped
8 cloves of garlic minced
2 lbs hamburger
2 cans of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups of frozen corn
1 can tomato paste
1 large can (29 oz) tomato puree
1 can of diced tomatoes
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
6 tsp Mrs Dash Fiesta Lime (you may want to adjust this to taste)
2 Tbsp dark brown sugar

In a large pot, brown hamburger over medium heat.  Add garlic and onions and cook til translucent.  Add salt and pepper.  Mix tomato paste into the hamburger mixture.  Add beans, corn, tomatoes, and tomato puree.  Mix together.  Add Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime seasoning to taste.  Add enough water to your desired thickness.  Mix in brown sugar.

Bring chili to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for an hour.

This was delicious.  Using the Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime seasoning gave the chili such an amazing blend of flavors.  The addition of the brown sugar was a last minute thought that turned out to be absolutely wonderful.  It mellowed the tomato taste and really added a rich note to the chili.

I also used tomatoes that I had diced and froze from my garden this past summer instead of canned tomatoes.  This is something that is so easy to do and definitely worth while. When the tomatoes are on in full force during the summer months I freeze the abundance for that fresh garden flavor in the winter.  I freeze cherry tomatoes whole and then bag them in quart size bags.  They are great to add to soups.  For diced tomatoes, I dice 1 3/4 cups of tomatoes and pour all the contents into a quart size bag.  This is equivalent to a can of diced tomatoes.

This recipe made 14 servings.  I freeze the leftovers in individual serving size bowls to be used for lunches later on in the month. 

I hope you enjoy!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Best GF DF Donuts EVER!!!

Cinnamon has been making gluten-free donuts for our parish for the past year and half.  It is quite the commitment each Saturday.  I am sure there are Saturdays that she would rather spend the three hours it takes, doing something else, but she knows it makes a difference.  It allows people a chance for fellowship and community over a simple offering of coffee and donuts.  It makes a difference for a segment of society that usually has to bypass such offerings.  It is a little thing, but it does make a big difference to those of us who can't eat gluten. 

 A few weeks ago when two little girls approached her and asked her if she made the donuts, she smiled and said yes.  They replied, "Thank you for making the donuts.  We can't eat the other kind.  We are gluten intolerant too!"  Cinnamon just smiled, but later as we were leaving church she slid her arm around my waist and said in her soft voice, "That is why I make donuts each week." 

She has made a variety of donuts.  Double chocolate topped with coconut, apple-cinnamon, plain topped with chocolate icing and sprinkles, maple flavored, lemon glazed, chocolate raspberry donuts to name a few.  Lately, she has begun to make her own recipes.  A few weeks ago she developed the best donut to date:  Vanilla Glazed Chocolate Chip Donuts!

I admit that after church I will eat a donut or two.  Yes.  Two.  They are small!  I have enjoyed all her baking, but these new donuts are in another category!  The three or four category.  The "sneak another" category.  I don't know what it is.  It is the perfect storm of ingredients and I have trouble walking past the kitchen without sampling.  That is not like me, but they are that good.  The best part: not only are they gluten-free, they are dairy free too!

And bless her heart, she is allowing me to share them with you!!!

Vanilla Glazed Chocolate Chip Donuts:

2 cups Gluten Free Mama Almond Flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp xanthan gum
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
8 Tbsp Earth Balance (I use the soy free kind)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1/2 cup coconut milk beverage like So Delicious or Trader Joe's
1/2 cup dairy free mini chocolate chips

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside.

In an electric mixer bowl, combine butter, sugar, and brown sugar.  Mix together.  Scrape down sides of the bowl.  Add eggs, vanilla, and coconut milk.  Mix together.  Mix in dry ingredients.  Add chocolate chips and stir.

We make these with this mini donut maker.  Follow the "baking" instructions according to the manufacturer.


1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3/4 tsp vanilla
3 Tbsp coconut milk beverage

Stir all ingredients together until combined.  Dip donuts into glaze and then let sit on a plate to dry.

Enjoy one or two.....or maybe three..... with a steaming cup of coffee or tea!  Thanks, Cinnamon!  They are delicious!!!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

My Favorite GF DF Recipe

I know it has been a long time.......enough said.  Let's just move on, shall we! 

I have been asked a lot about cooking dairy free lately.  For most people it seems so difficult and when you add being gluten-free to the mix, it seems down right impossible.  I am here to tell you that it isn't all that hard.  Really!  It isn't that bad.  It is just a different way of thinking.

I wanted to share with you a great recipe today.  This is my all-time, go-to standard for so many recipes. 

Hamburger Gravy

2 lbs of hamburger (I use venison)
2 onions chopped
8 Mushrooms sliced
1/2 cup GF flour  (I use Namaste's Perfect Flour Blend)
2 cups of milk (rice, soy, almond, coconut milk beverage)
2 cups of water
4 cubes of beef bouillon ( I use Herbox Beef Bouillon)
Salt and Pepper to taste
Seasonings (get creative here!)

Add bouillon cubes to 2 cups of hot water and let sit.  Set aside.

Brown hamburger and onion, drain fat thoroughly. Add mushrooms.  Mix the flour into the hamburger.  Add milk, water, bouillon cubes, and salt and pepper.  Season to taste.  Cook until heated through.

This is great over mashed potatoes or rice.   It is also a great base for casseroles.  Using the same basic recipe, switch the hamburger for chicken and use chicken bouillon cubes and you have a whole new flavor.  For a quick and easy casserole, add rice, cooked noodles, or frozen hash browns, along with a bag of frozen veggies.  Mix together and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.  YUM!!!

I am glad to be back!  I am looking forward to sharing many more recipes with you!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...