Sunday, March 28, 2010

Better late than never...

I got a belated Christmas gift a couple of days ago. It was left on the front porch with no fan fair and came in an ordinary brown cardboard box. In fact, when I picked up the box, I had no idea what it contained. I had gotten another package at the same time and thought this second box was part of that order. Imagine my glee when I opened the second box and saw that it was this:

Okay I already had the kitchen aid, but check out that clear bowl, that holds like 14 cups...with a pouring spout!!! It's a thing of beauty. A happy dance was done.
Hubs had seen me all but drooling on the computer screen when I first saw this on the internet. He'd ordered it for me way before Christmas, but apparently it wasn't released for sale until this week. So it maybe a bit late for Christmas, but it was an awesome gift to get on a random Thursday. Thanks Hubs!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Whatever Muffin

  A while ago I bought some rice flour for a recipe (that I have yet to make BUT plan to soon!!). It's been hanging out in my pantry for a while now. I've pulled out a couple of time and thought I'd try baking with it but just haven't had a good idea of what to I wanted to make. So back in the cupboard it would go. I had a meeting yesterday with a friend that is sensitive to wheat so I pulled out the rice flour and decided to make her some muffins. I used Bob's Red Mill rice flour (I love their products) and had noticed a muffin recipe on the side of the package. I used that recipe as a guide but these muffins are simple to adapt to "whatever" you want. You can sub any liquid for the milk, soy milk, juice, water, whatever! Add nuts if you like or leave them out. Any kind of fruit will work, fresh, frozen, or dried. I like having options!!  I added a cinnamon sugar topping to mine because I love cinnamon and blueberries. You can't have a blueberry muffin without a cinnamon sugar topping! Well you can, but I'll take mine with the cinnamon please.

The Whatever Muffin (printable recipe)
Adapted from Bob Red Mill 
yield: 6 muffins


1 large egg
1/2 cup milk (or liquid of choice, even just water)
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 cup white rice flour (brown rice flour can be substituted)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons chopped nuts - whatever type you want (optional)
1/2 cup fresh or frozen fruit-any kind (I used frozen blueberries that I tossed in a little bit of the rice flour to keep them from sinking to the bottom of the muffins)

Optional topping:
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon


Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line 6 muffin cups with  paper liners or coat the cups with canola cooking spray, or use a silicon muffin pan. In large bowl, combine egg, milk or  liquid of  your choice, sugar, and canola oil, mix until smooth. Add the rice flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix until just until combined. Stir in nuts (if desired) and fruit of choice. If using; mix together the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Divide batter among the prepared 6 muffin cups. Sprinkle the tops of the muffins with the cinnamon and sugar mixture and bake for 15-17 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center of largest muffin comes out reasonably clean.
I was really pleased with the resulting muffins. They were light and very tasty and I wouldn't have even known that they were wheat-free. They are so simple to make, one bowl, and easily adapted, I foresee many muffins in my future!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Devilishly Good Oatmeal Fruit Bars

My oatmeal obsession continues! If you've read my blog in the past you are already know how I feel about oatmeal. These bars started off being quite low fat. They were rather angelic, you could say, and then that little voice whispered "wouldn't those be even better with a little chocolate?" "You know they would be amazing with a chocolate topping and a sprinkle of nuts!" And with that, chocolaty temptation got the best of me.  So it's up to you.  These bars are very good just as they are and quite low-fat or like me, you can give into chocolate covered temptation. Come on you know you want too!

Oatmeal Fruit Bars  (Printable Recipe)

Source: Quaker, adapted

3/4  cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2  cup granulated sugar
One  8-ounce container plain low-fat yogurt
2  egg whites, lightly beaten
2  Tbsp. vegetable oil
2  Tbsp. milk
2  tsp. vanilla
1-1/2  cups all-purpose flour
1  tsp. baking soda
1  tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2  tsp. salt (optional)
3  cups oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
1  cup diced dried mixed fruit, raisins, or dried cranberries








Heat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, combine sugars, yogurt, egg whites, oil, milk, and vanilla; mix well. In medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt; mix well. Add to yogurt mixture; mix well. Stir in oats and fruit.
Spread dough onto bottom of ungreased 13x9-inch baking pan.
Bake 28 to 32 minutes or until light golden brown. Let bars cool for 10-15 minutes before topping with chocolate (if using).

Totally optional but devilishly good topping:

6 ounces dark chocolate
2 Tbl. unsalted butter
1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Place coarsely chopped chocolate and the butter in a microwave-safe container and microwave at MEDIUM (50 percent power) for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, until the chocolate turns shiny. Remove the container from the microwave and stir the chocolate until completely melted.Spread melted chocolate over the cooled oatmeal bars. Sprinkle with chopped nuts.