Cinnamon Buns Gluten Free (Flashback Friday)

 I have been reworking some of my recipes to use Julie's Flour Blend.  It is so much easier to have a go-to flour rather than mixing several flours for each recipe.  I find the end product is also more consistent because the flour amount used is more accurate. 
I redid my cinnamon bun recipe recently and am very happy with the results.  My tasters declared them the best I've made.


Here is my new recipe

  • 1/3 cup milk 
  • 1 tsp sugar 
  • 1 tsp unflavoured gelatin  
  • 1 1/2  tbsp traditional yeast 
  •  1 cup of Julie's Flour Blend 
  • 1/4 cup of potato starch 
  • 1/4 cup of tapioca starch
  • 1/3 cup sugar 
  • 1/4 tsp salt 
  • 3/4 tsp xanthan gum 
  • 2 eggs 
  • 1/4 cup soften butter 
  • 1 tsp vanilla 
  • softened/melted butter for spreading on dough
  • cinnamon 
  • 1 cup brown sugar 
  • sweet rice flour for handling 


  1. Heat milk add mixed sugar, gelatin, yeast  and let proof for 10 minutes
  2. In mixer bowl add eggs, butter, sugar,  vanilla - blend 
  3. Add proofed yeast 
  4. Add combined dry ingredients  (flours, salt, xanthan gum) 
  5. Blend, then beat on high for 5 minutes. 
  6. Place parchment paper or plastic wrap on counter and dust with sweet rice flour
  7. Scrape dough onto paper and use as little extra sweet rive flour as possible to enable dough to be handled.  You will need very little -- you want to keep the dough very soft. 
  8. Pat dough out to about 1/2 inch thickness,  spread with softened or melted butter, sprinkle with cinnamon and cover with the brown sugar, patting down the sugar. 
  9. Starting on the wide end roll up the dough, tucking the edge underneath - using the parchment paper to roll the dough rather than your hands 
  10. Cut into 1 1/2 inch slices and lay in greased baking pan - I prefer glass. 
  11. Let rise until doubled. 
  12. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until nicely browned. 
  13. Ice in pan while still hot. 

***************************************************************************8***

Last week I had the thought that this dough would also make a nice cinnamon swirl bread and I tried it. 
The resulting loaf was very good and enjoyed by those who 'tested it'.  
 It is a lovely not-so-sweet treat with a soft texture and good flavour. 

To make the bread, follow the cinnamon bun instructions to patting out the dough. You are going to be baking this in a reg. size bread pan (I find glass gives best results) so keep that in mind as you pat out your dough - that one edge is the length of your loaf pan. 
Then continue as follows.... 
  • Spread the dough lightly with melted butter. 
  • Sprinkle with white sugar and liberally with cinnamon. 
  • Roll up the dough using the parchment paper to help, tucking  edge underneath. 
  • Cut away the parchment paper, leaving only what the roll is sitting on. 
  • Lifting carefully place in loaf pan. 
  • Let rise in warm place - on top of stove with a steaming pot of water  is good) 
  • When loaf is risen to top of pan... bake at 350 degrees for 30 or until nicely browned. 
  • Let sit for a few minutes, then remove from pan to wire rack to cool completely before slicing. 
  • Keeps well on counter for couple of days .. freezes well  but best used within a couple of weeks. 
  • Enjoy with butter or a spread of your choice -- such as nutella or peanut butter.  
 ****************************************************************
Here is my original recipe post .. 
I adapted this recipe from a recipe I found online. You can find the original here.
These cinnamon buns are delicious and I have non-Celiac people ask for them.

Cinnamon Buns
Proof....until foamy
1 cup luke-warm milk
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp unflavored gelatin
1 1/2 tbsp regular yeast

In heavy duty mixer bowl beat....
2 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. oil
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg
2 tsp. vanilla

Add proofed yeast liquid .... mix then add all at once the following dry ingredients....

1/4 cup white bean flour (you can use a coffee grinder to grind your own small white bean flour..use a fine sieve .... you will have to grind several times to get nice fine flour, but it is very doable) 
1/4 potato starch
1/2 cup millet flour
1/2 cup tapioca starch
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp xanthan gum
 1/2 tsp salt

Mix on low speed until dry ingredients are moistened then beat on high for a couple of minutes until dough is smooth and elastic.

Tape plastic wrap onto your counter or cutting board..... Sprinkle with Sweet Rice Flour...
Turn dough onto the plastic wrap.
Cover with plastic wrap and roll dough into a rectangle about 15" by 10"
Remove top plastic wrap and sprinkle dough with cinnamon ... and about 1 cup of brown sugar. (optional - add raisins and/or nuts)

Using the bottom wrap to help, roll up the dough lengthwise, sealing edges.
Cut roll into 10 - 1 1/2" slices and place them in a large round pie plate.

Cover with cloth or towelling and let rise for about 40 minutes.

Bake at 375' for 30 minutes or until tops are nicely browned.

Remove from oven and cover the rolls with icing.
I cup icing sugar,
1 tsp butter
1 tsp vanilla
milk to make thick consistency
Enjoy warm... or cool.

Thai Pizza

If you want a new twist on Pizza and change things up a bit from the usual pepperoni and mushroom, you will enjoy this recipe I got from my friend Betty. It is made with a peanut sauce and topped with chicken and veggies. I also really enjoy BBQ chicken pizza too, another great recipe that Betty gave me. The best recipes always come from friends and family that are tried and true.



Peanut Sauce-

  • 1/2 cup natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons of fresh ginger, minced
  • 2 garlic, minced 
  • 2 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon soya sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha (asian garlic chili sauce) or chili flakes
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 2-3 tablespoons water
Pizza-
  • enough pizza dough for 2 -12 in pizzas
  • 2 chicken breasts cut into cubes
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cups mozzarella cheese
  • 4 green onions, sliced on the diagonal
  • 1/2 cup bean sprouts
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrot
  • 2 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons dry roasted unsalted peanuts, chopped
  1. Bring all the sauce ingredients together and bring to a boil. Simmer for about a minute. 
  2. Brown the cubed chicken in the olive oil if using fresh. Cook for about 5. Cool.
  3. Toss the chicken with about 1/3 cup of the sauce. 
  4. Roll the pizza dough onto a pizza pan.
  5. Use desired amount of sauce and spread it to the edge.
  6. Sprinkle with half the cheese.
  7. Put on the chicken and the vegetables. 
  8. Add remaining cheese, sprinkle with peanuts.
  9. Bake in a preheated oven at 450 for 15 minutes. 
  10. Sprinkle with cilantro.
  11. Dig in. 

Antipasto





Antipasto!
Sure, it's available in the grocery store and maybe cheaper still in a big box store.
But wouldn't you rather make your own?
It's not only tastier but it's there on the shelf when guests come by for coffee.
Wrap it up in cellophane along with a box of crackers and tie it with a pretty ribbon and you have a lovely hostess gift for those Christmas parties.
and best of all, making Antipasto is a great excuse for inviting your sister, your best friend, or in my case, my next door neighbours in for an Antipasto making party!

Assemble your ingredients the day ahead.

Enlist help to chop the ingredients - a chopper like the one above or a food processor is helpful as are friends to make the work more fun.




 It only takes part of a day and you have your own delicious antipasto!

Credit for this recipe goes to my friend Katie who contributed it to one of our church cookbooks.
My neighbours, Barbara and Beatrice and I assembled this recipe 3 times and each took home 32 half pint jars. - enough to give as gifts and have some for ourselves.  
We started at 10 am and had the last jars in the canner by 4 pm. (with time out for lunch)
 There is still time to make it in time for Christmas giving.
Here's the recipe - It makes 32 1/2 pints.

A note from Bev:
Please read the comments below about the canning process before making this recipe.
I was unaware of any problem using a water bath so 
You may want to use a pressure canner as suggested in the comments.
You can also check out the following link on Canning guidelines

  • 1/2 kg. / 1 pound cauliflower
  • 1/2 kg. / 1 pound green peppers
  • 1/2 kg. / 1 pound red peppers
  • 1 375 ml / 13 ounce jar green olives, drained (using sliced olives means a bit less chopping)
  • 1 375 ml / 13 ounce jar sliced black olives, drained
  • 2 cans 375 ml / 13 ounce green beans, drained 
  • 2 cans  375ml/ 13 ounce yellow wax beans, drained
  • 1 litre/ 1 quart /  jar dill pickles, drained (reserve)
  • 1 375 ml. / 13 ounce jar pickled pearl onions
  • 115 ml / 4 ounces olive oil
  • 125ml /1/2 cup  reserved pickle brine
  • 4 tins 375 ml /13 ounce mushrooms (pieces and stems) drained
  • 5 tins   184 g / 6.5 ounce solid pack or chunk tuna, drained
  • 4.5 litres /1 gallon  ketchup
  • 1/2  455 ml./ ounce bottle Heinz Chili Sauce
  • Optional - hot sauce or jalapeno peppers, 1 tin anchovies
Note 1. Because can sizes vary, choose the size nearest to the above given amounts.
     Note 2. We like our Antipasto chopped small enough so that you can get a good mixture of          ingredients that will stay on a cracker.
  1. Chop cauliflower, green peppers, red peppers, olives, beans, dill pickles and pickled onions.
  2. Place in a large heavy bottomed soup pot with olive oil and pickle brine
  3. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook for 10 minutes, stirring constantly.
  4. Chop mushrooms, flake tuna and set aside.
  5. Add ketchup, chili sauce, stir well to combine and simmer for another 10 minutes stirring constantly. (It will burn quickly if not stirred) 
  6. Remove from heat and add tuna, mushrooms and any optional ingredients. Stir well to combine.
  7. Spoon into 1/2 pint jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace,
  8. Top with hot snap lids and screw tops moderately tight.
  9. Process in canner for 20 minutes.
  10. Remove each batch from the canner and place on towels. Cover with another towel and let them cool to room temperature.  Label and store in a dark, cool place.

Ensaymada..sweet bread from the Philippines


My son has a number of staff that are from the Philippines. They appreciate it if I bake breads that they are accustomed to from their country. Since I love baking with yeast I was really intrigued by this recipe. I got a thumbs up from them. Maybe mine look a little more rustic than they should look but they are really delicious! In the Philippines this bread is a popular gift to bring when visiting someone's home especially at Christmas time.
  • 5 cups flour
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon instant yeast
  • 1 cup milk, warm
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 3 eggs
  1. In mixing bowl combine flour, sugar, salt, and yeast. Set aside.
  2. In another bowl whisk together warmed up milk, melted butter, and beaten eggs.
  3. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients, mix and knead until the dough holds together and lets go from the side of the bowl. It will still be a little sticky. 
  4. Place in a slightly greased bowl and let rise for 2 hours or until doubled in bulk. 
  5. Remove from bowl to a slightly greased surface. Cut into 4 pieces and cut each piece into another 4 pieces. You should have 16 pieces.
  6. In a small bowl combine melted butter and sugar (filling/topping amounts shown below) and place over a bowl of hot water to keep the mixture thin enough for brushing. 
  7. With a rolling pin flatten each piece. Brush with butter/sugar mixture in the middle part only as the photo shows, sprinkle a bit of cheese on the brushed part and bring both sides of dough over the middle. Pinch to seal the edge and ends. Roll into a cylinder until it's long enough to loop over, then insert one end into the middle from the bottom and tuck the other end underneath. You can simplify this step if you like and just roll into a coil.
  8. Place on parchment lined pan, cover with a tea towel and let rise 40 minutes.
  9. Bake 15 minutes in a 350º oven.
  10. Remove from oven and while still hot brush rolls with remaining butter/sugar mixture and sprinkle remaining cheese on top.
  11. If you have run out of the butter/sugar mixture mix up a little extra as needed. Just remember one-to-one ratio.
Filling and topping:
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups grated mild cheddar cheese..you can be generous and use more if you like:)

Dark Brown Dinner Bread


This moist dark brown baguette loaf is perfect to serve at dinner alongside slices of  white french baguette. 


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons softened butter
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 - 2 cups white flour
  • 1 beaten egg (for egg wash)
  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine yeast, water and honey.  Allow to rest for 10 minutes to proof yeast.
  2. Add in remaining ingredients except flours.  Beat well to combine.  
  3. Add whole wheat flour and mix with a dough hook if using a mixer.  Add enough white flour to make a soft dough that comes away from the sides.  Knead with mixer about 8 minutes or knead by hand on a floured counter. about 10 minutes or until smooth and elastic.  Add sprinkles of flour as needed to keep from sticking to the counter. 
  4. Turn dough into a large bowl and cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm place until double in bulk.  This will take at least an hour, maybe more because the dough is heavy.
  5. Divide dough in half and roll each piece into a long narrow rectangle keeping in mind the length of your baking sheet.  Roll up long side first to make a long cylinder shape and repeat with remaining piece of dough.
  6. Place both breads on a greased cookie sheet and slice crosswise along the top with a sharp knife to create design.
  7. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  8. Allow to rise until doubled and then brush on beaten egg and bake about 20 minutes or until the crust is deep brown.  


Bread for the Journey




Faithful to the End 

I was given a lovely bouquet of flowers for my birthday this summer. 
The blooms lasted a long time 
but 
one lonely flower outlasted them all. 

I was reminded of the verse in Hebrews 3:14
"For we have become partakers of Christ 
if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end."

Faithful
What a beautifully comforting word. 
 Jesus has promised to be faithful to the end  of the age
and His promises are true, but what about us?  
Are we faithful as long as things go our way...and then waver when it no longer feels 'good' ?
Are we like that last flower, blooming even when we are the only one left standing? 
Do we refuse to ask 'Why?' because we know the Who?

Who - the One who is our answer, 
our anchor, our strength! 
"Until my last breath, or until I hear the trumpet call, 
I will be faithful to the end."

Saturday in Anneliese's Kitchen on How to Shape Buns



I'm not quite sure on how to introduce this little video,
other than hoping the visual element on how to shape buns is helpful.
Let us know if this is how you do it
or feel free to share another method.

Meat Buns ~ Flashback Friday


It's 'Flashback Friday' and I am re-posting one of the first recipes I submitted to this blog...back on June 10, 2008.  It has also been one of our most viewed recipes and so I decided it was time to give it a bit of an update.  It is now re-formatted and has a new photo. The original photos appear in the collage at the bottom of the post.  Instructions for using instant yeast are also included.

There’s nothing quite like the meat perishky I recall from days gone by…a dainty meat-filled pastry. I have my mother-in-law's recipe but somehow couldn’t see myself rolling out all the dough and spending hours making tiny little pockets. So I adapted the recipe somewhat and came up with meat buns.  They are wonderful to have on-hand in the freezer and pull out for a quick lunch with pickles and cheese. 

Filling:

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 package onion soup mix
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
  1. Brown ground beef over medium heat in large skillet…breaking up while cooking*.
  2. Drain. Add onions and cook for a few more minutes.
  3. Stir in onion soup mix and mushroom soup and heat through.
  4. Allow mixture to cool completely (can be made ahead).
*Tip: Use a potato masher to break apart the meat as it is browning.

Dough:
  • 2 Tablespoons yeast
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • ½ cup lukewarm water
  • 4 cups warm water
  • 1/3 cup potato flakes (instant mashed potatoes)...optional
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • ½ cup oil
  • 1 cup butter or margarine
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 12 cups flour
  1. Dissolve sugar and yeast in lukewarm water. Let stand 10 minutes.
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine 4 cups water, potato flakes, sugar, salt, oil and margarine.  
  3. Add beaten eggs.
  4. Stir in softened yeast and beat in six cups of flour.
  5. Continue to add flour until dough leaves sides of pan.
  6. Knead until smooth and elastic.
  7. Allow to rise until doubled in size.  
  8. Then punch down and form meat buns. 
  9. Pinch off balls of dough about the size of a small egg.
  10. Flatten dough in the palm of your hand into about a 3-inch circle.
  11. Place a spoonful of filling on the center.
  12. Bring the edges of the dough up and around the filling and pinch together tightly to seal edges.
  13. Place pinched side down on a greased baking sheet.
  14. Cover and allow to rise in a warm place.
  15. Bake at 375 degrees F. for about 20 minutes...or until golden.
Alternate method using instant yeast:
  • 11 cups flour
  • 2 Tablespoons instant yeast
  • 4 cups warm water
  • 1/3 cup potato flakes...optional
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon salt 
  • ½ cup oil
  • 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  1. Combine instant yeast with 5 cups of flour.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine water, potato flakes, sugar, salt, oil and margarine.  
  3. Add beaten eggs. 
  4. Stir in the 5 cups of flour with added yeast. Mix well.
  5. Continue to add flour until dough leaves sides of pan.
  6. Knead until smooth and elastic.
  7. Allow to rise until doubled in size.  
  8. Then punch down and form meat buns...as in instructions above.


*One recipe of meat filling will not be enough to fill all the dough.  Use leftover dough to shape into regular dinner buns. 

Hot Curry Dip



It's the season where we can sit back and leisurely enjoy some hot appies. Here's one of those favorite dips with a pinch of curry, just perfect for this time of year.  Prepare it ahead of time and serve it nice and hot with a few of your favorite crackers.

Curry Dip
  • 1 cup finely chopped cooked chicken
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
  • 8 oz. package softened light cream cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp. curry
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
Topping
  • 1/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/4 cup apricot jalapeno chutney (red pepper jelly) 
  • additional sliced green onions
  • apple wedges and celery sticks
 Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400°
  2. Combine ingredients from the top list in to a bowl.
  3. Mix well and spread over bottom of a baking dish.
  4. Bake 20 minutes or until heated through.
Topping Instructions.
  1. Combine coconut and almonds in small bowl
  2. Microwave uncovered on high for 1-2 minutes or until evenly toasted stirring after 20 second intervals.
  3. Spread jelly or chutney over warm dip.
  4. Sprinkle with coconut mixture and garnish with onion greens.
  5. Serve with apple wedges/celery sticks and crackers.
 This will become one of your favorites over the winter months. Simple, tasty with a hot tangy flavor.

Black Forest Cake

 This rich moist cake starts with a cake mix. The addition of a can of cherry pie filling and a few other ingredients makes for a moist deliciously rich black forest cake. You may think there is an error in this recipe, but you don't add any water or oil to the mix. This cake bakes well in two 9" round pans or a 9x13 pan. I used a 9x13 and then cut and rolled the cake in a spiral. 

  • 1 Devils Food cake mix (461g)(this is a dark chocolate boxed mix, best if you can find one with pudding right in the mix)
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 tbsp almond extract
  • 1 can cherry pie filling
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 3 cups whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla 
  • can of cherry pie filling for decorating (optional)
  • chocolate shavings(optional)
  1. Pour dry cake mix into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Crack eggs into separate bowl and whisk slightly. Pour over dry cake mix.
  3. Add almond extract, pie filling and chocolate chips.
  4. Mix with a stand mixer, or hand held or just a large wooden spoon until all the dry and wet ingredients are well combined.
  5. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment, leaving extra paper over the edges of the pan to help lift it out after it's baked.
  6. Bake in 350º for 45-50 minutes. Cool in pan.
  7. When you are ready to decorate the cake remove from pan by pulling it out with the over hanging parchment and place onto a cutting board.
  8. Cut cake into 1 1/2" long strips. 
  9. Beat whipping cream with powdered sugar and vanilla until stiff.
  10. Turn one strip of cake onto it's side at a time and spread it thick with whipped cream.
  11. Onto a large flat cake plate, starting in the centre begin to roll cake into a circle. Continue on with the strips of cake and cream forming a spiral, until your cake is near the edge of your plate. 
  12. Frost the outside of the cake with the remaining whipped cream.
  13. Decorate top of cake with more cherry pie filling and chocolate shavings.
Creating the spiral effect. 
When baking this cake in round pans just fill and frost with the cream as you would a layer cake, or cut each in half making a tall 4 layer torte style cake. For a really simple way to serve, leave cake in 9x13, cut and serve with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of ice cream. 

Dessert Crepes


When we toured the little town of Hyeres this past summer, we stopped at a sidewalk cafe and had the most amazing crepes! I decided that we would have to try these when we got home. I used an old stand by pancake (crepe) recipe from the Mennonite Treasury (p 15) and poured them a tad thicker than I would for "sugar roll up" type pancakes.  Dessert pancakes are not a lot of work and can be a fun to do around the table. I will post a banana hazelnut spread version, but the filling options are limitless.

Ingredients:

  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • hazelnut spread, sliced bananas and whipped cream
Method:
  1. With hand mixer, beat eggs, milk, flour and salt, until fairly smooth.
  2.  Pour about 1/3 - 1//2 cup of batter into hot, lightly buttered 8-inch griddle.
  3. Cook both sides and stack on serving plate. Butter griddle as needed.
  4. Prepare filling and topping: sliced bananas, hazelnut topping in piping tube and whipped cream. When served, each guest can spread hazelnut topping down center of crepe, top with bananas, fold over and top with whipped cream. Hazelnut - free options to have on hand as well could be steamed, sliced apples or any fresh or cooked berries.

Turkey Pepper Chili

This chili is a great alternative to beef chili and one with some added ingredients that are considered to be a healthy alternative.

2 tbsp. olive oil
1 pound white meat ground turkey
1/2 onion chopped
2 stalks of celery chopped
1 red bell pepper seeded and chopped
1 jalapeno pepper seeded and chopped
1 Anaheim chile seeded and chopped
2 cups chicken stock (or more if needed)
1 can 14.5 oz. diced tomatoes
1 can 15 oz. white beans or black beans (drained)
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. each of salt, cumin, and dried oregano leaves
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
4 cups of chopped Kale
salt and pepper to taste

Heat olive oil in large pot, add onion, celery and all peppers and saute till onion is translucent. Add turkey and season with salt and pepper and cook through. If needed add a little of the chicken stock during this process if the turkey starts sticking to the pan. Add remaining ingredients, including Kale. Bring to a boil and then lower the temperature to a simmer. Simmer till the vegetables are cooked through. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed.
Serve with corn bread.

Bread for the Journey



Blest be the tie that binds...
Our hearts in Christian love;
The fellowship of kindred minds,
Is like to that above.
John Fawcett ~ 1782

The words of that song have come to mind as we worshiped with believers in various churches we have visited while traveling.  Whether it was in the jungle of Haiti, the mountains of Switzerland, the dessert of Arizona, the prairies of Canada or on the islands of Hawaii...there was that 'tie that binds'.  I recall in particular, a church service we took in while vacationing in Kona, Hawaii some time ago. Our early Sunday morning walk took us past the Living Stones Church where the 7:30 am service was just beginning. Though the little church was already full, there was plenty of room in the oceanfront overflow area...and so we joined the outdoor service. The time of fellowship ended with communion and though we knew not a soul in the congregation...we felt that 'tie that binds'.  How special to share that common link...our relationship with our Lord Jesus Christ.  If we are in Christ, we share a bond that even the greatest diversities cannot break.


 But if we walk in the light, 
as he is in the light, 
we have fellowship with one another, 
and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.
 1 John 1:7 ESV


Green Tomato Jam


A little more preserving.. Not all the tomatoes ripened in the garden this year so I decided to make green tomato jam. A nice little appetizer or snack. Spread cream cheese on a cracker and add a little of the jam on top. If you like more heat add more jalapeno. This jam tastes great on toast too.
  • 4 cups green tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 large jalepeno pepper, finely minced
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  1. Chop tomatoes, mince pepper and put both in a large pot.
  2. Add sugar, lemon juice and grated lemon peel.
  3. Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
  4. Cook for 30 minutes.
  5. Pour jam into sterilized jars and seal. 
  6. Store in refrigerator.
  7. Yields: 6 half cup jars.

Flashback Friday ~ Pumpkin Praline Trifle


I found this recipe in a magazine and have made it for two very special gatherings. It's a great trifle for our fall and winter celebrations.

The most time consuming part of the recipe is making the praline. The praline recipe yields enough to make 2 trifles. The creamy layers and pumpkin layers are very simple to make and assemble. If you have a large gathering with lots of preparations I would suggest making the praline up to a week ahead and then preparing the trifle a day or two ahead of your gathering.

Praline:
  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 1 cup packed golden brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup half and half
  • 1-1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1-2/3 cups pecan halves or pieces (about 6 oz.)

Mascarpone Cream:
  • 2 cups chilled heavy whipping cream
  • 1- 8 oz. container chilled mascarpone cheese
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Filling
  • 1 - 15 oz. can pure pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup packed golden brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg (I used already ground)
  • 1/4 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1-1/2 - 3 oz. packages of soft ladyfingers. (I bought a 4.75 oz. box of soft lady fingers at Trader Joe’s and it was enough for 1 trifle)
  • 4-1/2 tablespoons of dark rum, divided
Praline:
  1. Spray baking sheet with nonstick spray. 
  2. Bring both sugars and half and half to boil in heavy medium saucepan over medium high heat, whisking to dissolve sugar. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 5 minutes, whisking constantly. 
  3. Add butter, vanilla, and salt. 
  4. Attach candy thermometer to pan. Simmer without stirring until temperature registers 260 degrees F, about 8 minutes. 
  5. Remove from heat; immediately mix in pecans. 
  6. Transfer to prepared sheet, spreading in a single layer. 
  7. Cool completely. Chop into 1/4 inch pieces.
 Mascarpone Cream:
  1. Using electric mixer, beat all ingredients in large bowl until firm peaks form. 
  2. Set aside 1/2 cup mascarpone cream for pumpkin filling.
Filling:
  1. Whisk pumpkin, brown sugar, whipping cream, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and salt to blend.
  2. Whisk in reserved 1/2 cup mascarpone cream.

Assembling the Trifle:
  1. Spread 1/3 cup mascarpone cream over bottom of 8×5 inch trifle dish (12-14 cup capacity). 
  2. Place layer of lady fingers over cream. Sprinkle 1-1/2 Tablespoons of rum over. 
  3. Spread 1/2 cup pumpkin filling over ladyfingers, spreading to edges. 
  4. Sprinkle 1/3 cup praline over. 
  5. Spread 1 cup mascarpone cream over. 
  6. Cover with another layer of lady fingers. 
  7. Sprinkle with 1-1/2 tablespoons rum, then spread 1 cup pumpkin filling over. 
  8. Sprinkle 1/2 cup praline over.
  9. Repeat 1 more time with 1 cup mascarpone cream, lady fingers, rum, 1 cup pumpkin filling and 1/2 cup praline. 
  10. Spread remaining mascarpone cream on top. 
  11. Cover and chill overnight.
  12. DO AHEAD. Can be made 2 days ahead.
Uncover trifle. Sprinkle 1 cup praline decoratively over top (reserving any remaining praline for another use)
 You can omit the Rum if you prefer...

Whoopie Pies - Gluten Free


Since I bought a Whoopie pan some time ago, even though I bought it for an unrelated use, I thought I should try the Whoopie pie recipe that came with the pan.
I'm not familiar with Whoopie pies, except from books set in the South, where Whoopie pies seem to be considered the ultimate treat.
I adapted the recipe to be gluten free and was quite happy with how they turned out.  I made my own marshmallow creme and I found that the top Whoopie pie did not want to sit still on top of the crème.  Maybe the commercial product is more stable, or maybe I should have refrigerated them until set.
But since mine slid I decided to make a chocolate sauce to drizzle over them and pretend I wanted them to slide and served them as a dessert -  my guests were lavish with praise and I didn't tell them about my less than successful attempt at assembling them.   Good way to cover a failure, right?   Just pretend you meant it to be that way!  smile

So here is my recipe for both the gf Whoopie pies


  • 1 3/4 cup Julie's Flour Mix 
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar 
  • 1/2 cup white sugar 
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder 
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder 
  • 1 tsp soda 
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum 
  • 1 egg 
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup milk 
  • 1tbsp  yogurt
  1. Beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy 
  2. Sift dry ingredients together 
  3. Add alternately with milk/yogurt
  4. Mix until well blended 
  5. Drop 2 tbsp batter in each whoopie cavity (makes 24 cakes / 12 whoopie pies) 
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes 
  7. Let cool completely then put two cakes together with marshmallow crème (make your own marshmallow creme - lots of recipes online -  or buy ready made from grocery store)  



Linguini with Turkey and Sun Dried Tomatoes


After our family gathering on Thanksgiving weekend, I, like many of you, 
had leftover turkey in the fridge.
Here's what I did with it for supper last night.
  • linguini noodles to serve 4
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 a medium sized onion, sliced stem to root
  • 1 stalk celery sliced
  • 1/2 a yellow pepper cut into strips
  • 1 large clove garlic sliced into strips
  • 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes (in oil) drained and cut into strips
  • 1 1/2 cups cut up cooked turkey
  • 2 tablespoon butter (I used leftover garlic butter)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • salt and pepper
  • Parmesan cheese.

  1. Cook noodles to package directions until al dente.
  2. Drain and set aside.
  3. While noodles are cooking, saute vegetables in olive oil until soft but not browned.
  4. Add sundried tomatoes and turkey to the vegetables and set aside.
  5. Make cream sauce by melting butter, blending in flour and then adding milk.
  6. Cook, stirring often until thickened.
  7. Add  thyme and salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Add noodles to the saute' pan with the vegetables.
  9. Pour the cream sauce over the noodles and vegetables and toss to moisten.
  10. Add grated parmesan cheese  (be generous!) and serve.

Quiche Tarts


Quiche, done in pie shells, muffin tins or in mini tarts, usually disappears quickly. I like the versatility of it as a main dish with a salad, maybe as a little appetizer, or on a buffet for a shower. You can use purchased tart shells and do these up very quickly. They can be frozen and reheated or just enjoy as they are for a packed lunch. I made these with a homemade pastry. I got this recipe from my friend Mary, many years ago.

Quiche filling:
  • 1/2 cup crumbled farmer sausage or 1/4 cup real bacon bits
  • 2 oz grated Swiss Cheese (or any other cheese, about 1- 1 1/2 cups)
  • 3 Tbsp green onion, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup whipping cream (half and half works)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp dill dressing mix (or dried dill)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • pinch pepper
  1. Heat oven to 400 F. 
  2. Sprinkle bottom of each tart with sausage, green onion and cheese.
  3. Combine eggs with cream and seasoning and beat to blend, then fill unbaked tart shells to 3/4 full.
  4. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes or until golden and toothpick test comes out clean. Baking time will vary according to size of quiche.
If you should choose to make this quiche in a regular pie shell, add one egg to the filling. Bake pie shell 10 minutes, fill and continue baking 30 minutes in bottom third of oven. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Homemade pastry (if using) to make 24 medium size tarts (make ahead / they freeze well)
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 6 Tbps ice cold water
  1. Cut shortening into flour and salt until crumbly.
  2. With fork, stir in water until it forms a ball.
  3. Shape with a dusting of flour, cut in half and roll each half out thin to about a very large dinner plate.
  4. Cut shells with extra large cookie cutter. The cutter should be a few inches larger than the bottom of the individual tart shell. I used a scalloped Tupperware cutter. Gather and re-roll left over scraps.

Apple Filled French Toast


Happy Thanksgiving Monday to all our Canadian friends.
This french toast makes a wonderful brunch recipe that can either be prepared the night before and baked in the morning or it can be popped into the oven after sitting for awhile.
If you have a can of prepared pie filling of any flavour in your pantry, you can use that or put together this apple filling to stuff your french toast.
This recipe can easily be doubled or cut in half.   In the photos, I halved the recipe using a small loaf of  homemade french bread. 

  • 8 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • thin slices day old french bread or baguette
  • butter
  •  apple pie filling  or purchased pie filling of your choice
  1. Preheat oven to 350.  Use convection setting if you have it.
  2. Warm pie filling either in the microwave or in a small saucepan and set aside.
  3. Combine eggs, milk, salt and vanilla and beat together until well blended. 
  4. Choose a baking pan that is large enough to place half your slices of french bread close enough to touch.  Spray pan with cooking spray.
  5. Dip half the slices in egg mixture, placing each one into pan after dipping.
  6. Top with a spoon of pie filling and top with remaining egg dipped french toast.
  7. Put a dab of butter over each piece.   Allow to sit 20 minutes or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.  Allow the dish to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before baking.
  8. Bake 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the dish comes out clean.  It will depend on how thick the slices of french toast are. 
  9. Serve warm with maple syrup.

Apple Filling  ~ Makes about 5 cups
  • 8 cups peeled and chopped apples  (about 8 apples)  Our apples are Jonagold. 
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups cold water
  1. Combine apples and lemon juice and set aside.
  2. Combine sugars and cornstarch with cinnamon and salt in a large saucepan.  Slowly add water while stirring to eliminate lumps and bring to a boil.  
  3. Add apples and stir until the mixture comes to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer gently for 10 minutes or until apples are tender crisp.  Do not stir more than necessary to avoid turning the apples to sauce. 
  4.  Remove from heat and cool. Filling will thicken more once cooled. Use immediately or refrigerate in jars or portion and freeze in freezer bags.   

Bread for the Journey

Happy Thanksgiving to all our Canadian Friends

May God bless you with a peaceful gathering enjoying good food, friends and family! Count your blessings, name them one by one!! 

Psalm 28:7, "The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song."


Psalm 79:13, “But we your people, the sheep of your pasture, will give thanks to you forever; from generation to generation we will recount your praise.
Psalm 145:10, “All your works shall give thanks to you O LORD, and all your saints shall bless you!”
I Chronicles 16:8, “Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples!”

Poached Pears with Warm Cream Sauce

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving.

This weekend we are celebrating Canadian Thanksgiving. Today being Saturday there will be many cooks in the kitchen preparing their family favourites. Tables will be set in autumn themes, turkeys will be thawing, salads will be made, buns will be baked, homes will begin to take on a holiday cheer. 
Fall desserts are some of my favourite. Warm poached pears with cream sauce is one I like to serve during this season. It's a really nice dessert to serve after dinner, or one I like to serve when we have guests in for just coffee and dessert.
  • 6 pears
  • water to cover pears
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1/4 lemon, juiced, plus 1 tsp lemon rind
  • 1/4  cup white wine or apple juice
  1. Wash pears. 
  2. Fill a pot with water. 
  3. Stir in brown sugar and add the cinnamon sticks and lemon juice, rind and wine or apple juice.
  4. Place washed pears in water. Add more water until pears are submerged.
  5. Bring to a boil. Turn down to a slow boil. Continue to cook until pears are tender, but not too soft or mushy when poked with a sharp small knife. This takes approximately 20-30 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and carefully remove pears. Discard brine. Place pears onto a cutting board and slice off a very small amount from the bottom of each pear so that they stand on individual serving plates. (See serving suggestions at bottom of recipe)
  7. Serve warm with warmed cream sauce. Recipe follows. Best served right after they come out of the cinnamon sugar brine.
Cream sauce: (can be made a day before and slowly heated when ready to serve)
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  1. Place sugar in a small sauce pan. 
  2. Drizzle with lemon juice to moisten sugar.
  3. Stir in whipping cream.
  4. Place over medium heat and stir until mixture gets very warm, but do not boil. 
Serving suggestion:
Warm caramel ice cream topping and drizzle it over your serving plates before placing your pears on the plates. Place pears in centre, add a scoop of ice cream and top with warm Cream Sauce.

Flashback Friday / Spicy BBQ Meatballs or Farmer Sausage


I first posted this recipe way back on 2008. With this being Thanksgiving weekend in Canada, it is the perfect time to revive this recipe since I always serve these meatballs along side our Turkey dinner. I have been making these meatballs for over 30 years now and I am asked to make them every year. It is a recipe that is easily adapted to being gluten free and is naturally dairy free so everyone in my family can enjoy these. I also make this sauce with Farmer Sausage for a quick mid week meal. The longer the meatballs sit in the sauce the tastier they are. If you are making these for Thanksgiving dinner, use a crock pot to free up the oven for the Turkey.

  • 2 lbs of prepared meatballs or a double link of smoked sausage
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp paprika or may use part chili powder
  • 1 tbsp. dry mustard
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup vinegar


  1. Saute' the chopped onion in some oil until soft but not brown. 
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.
  3. Pour over meatballs and bake in a 350 oven for 40 minutes, or for 4-6 hours on low in the crock pot. 


If you are using it for Farmer Sausage, saute onion in olive oil, add 1 whole farmer sausage cut in slices. Combine ingredients for the sauce and simmer on the stovetop for 30-40 minutes or place in a casserole dish and bake in a 350 oven for about the same time. You can also put the Farmer sausage in crock pot and cook on low 4-6 hours. The longer the meat sits in the sauce the tastier it is. Great the next day. Serves well with mashed potatoes, rice or pasta.

Lemon Basil Carrot Bundles


With many people planning turkey dinners for this weekend, here's a veggie plate suggestion that might just be a good addition to your menu.  The carrots can easily be prepared in advance, and re-heated at the last minute.  They taste as good as they look!
  • 8 large carrots (about 2 pounds)
  • 8 stems of green onion
  • 3 Tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  1. Pare or scrape carrots. Then cut into strips about 3 inches in length.
  2. Cook carrots over medium heat until tender crisp.
  3. Remove from heat.  Drain and rinse with cold water.
  4. Place onion greens in a covered dish in the microwave.  Cook on high for 30 seconds.  Cool and use limp onion greens as ropes to tie the carrot bundles.
  5. Gather carrot strips into eight bundles.
  6. Tie each with an green onion stem. Trim off ends of carrot bundles to even out lengths, if desired.
  7. Place bundles in a shallow bowl and drizzle with lemon basil mixture.
  8. Cover and chill until serving time. 
  9. Reheat in microwave oven for about 3 minutes or until piping hot.
  10. Serve on a bed of steaming green peas, if desired!
Serves 8


Enjoy!

Apple Pie


Apple Pies, Apple Sauce, Caramel Apples, Apple Pancakes are all being enjoyed during the apple harvest this month.  I'll freeze apple sauce and apple perishky but mostly, I just enjoy picking apples off the trees and taking them in to prepare treats for the family. 


My Mom didn't put cinnamon in her apple pie and so that is how we learned to love it.
The apples you use will make a difference on the texture of your pie.  Our Jonagolds are ripe now and make delicious apple sauce.  We like them in pies too.  They won't keep their shape like a Granny Smith will but again, I grew up eating transparent apple pies.

Deep Dish 9 inch Apple Pie

  • pastry for a 9 inch deep dish pie 
  • 8 cups peeled and sliced apples
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons minute tapioca
  • two tablespoons butter
  • 1 egg and 1 tablespoon milk for pastry wash
  • sugar for sprinkling
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  2. Roll out pastry to fit pie plate, allowing an inch hanging over to be able to crimp edges.
  3. In a large bowl, combine apples, flour, tapioca and sugar. 
  4. Turn out the filling into the pastry and top with pastry.  Crimp edges either but using the tines of a fork or pinching them together.  Make a hole in the center of the pie to vent the steam and also to allow a window into the filling.  
  5. Use foil to cover around the edge of the pie.  You can remove the foil in the last 15 minutes of baking.  This will ensure the whole pie is browned the same.
  6. Brush the top of the pie with beaten egg combined with milk and then sprinkle with sugar
  7. Bake for 15 minutes and then turn oven down to 375 and continue baking about 50 minutes or until the filling is bubbling and the top is nicely browned. 




Apple Pumpkin Ricotta Muffins


Apple and Pumpkin season arrive at the same time. So why not combine the two and enjoy a tasty muffin for breakfast or coffee break! I used Goodland apples, grown here in Manitoba. The pumpkins were grown here as well:) Thank you Susan for the apples and pumpkins..they have turned into delicious treats!

  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups apples, cored, peeled and finely chopped 
  • Gingersnap cookie crumbs (optional)
  1. Mix together first 7 dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl whisk together pumpkin puree, ricotta cheese, oil, and eggs until blended.
  3. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients just until moistened. The dough will be thick. Fold in finely chopped apples.
  4. Spoon into greased muffin tins.
  5. Sprinkle with gingersnap crumbs (optional)
  6. Bake at 350º for 30 to 35 minutes until muffins test done when pierced with a toothpick.
  7. Cool a few minutes then remove muffins from pan and place on a cooling rack.
  8. Yields: 18 muffins



Habanero Mayonaise


I challenge you to try this recipe. Many people run at the sound of really spicy food, but we really enjoy some extra zip. Pretty little orange Habanero peppers look cute...but man they have kick. I like to add them to home made salsa, and thought I'd try making Habanero Mayonnaise to use as a burger and sandwich spread. Very tasty and just the right amount of spice. The honey and mayonnaise smooth out the flavour. Of course you can add less or more Habanero.

  • 1 cup mayonnaise (I like Hellman's brand)
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro (or substitute with fresh parsley)
  • 2 tbsp liquid honey
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1-2 seeded habanero peppers (Leave in the seeds if you want 'fire')
  1. Place all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth.
  2. Place in a glass jar, cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving. 

Bread for the Journey

(Photo credit Tara Jakobson)

With the beauty of the changing season and all the brilliant colors of fall, the skies have been incredible. Even though this is my friends picture and not mine, my eyes have seen such skies and I can't help but be in "awesome wonder" of God's creation all around me. We all know life can be very messy at times, and complex beyond our own human comprehension. The truth remains that we have a God that loves and cares for us. Just look around. It is all around us, and witness it with your own eyes. 

How Great Thou Art 
Verse 1:
O Lord my God, When I in awesome wonder,
Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made;
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,
Thy power throughout the universe displayed.

Chorus:
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

Verse 2:
When through the woods, and forest glades I wander,
And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees.
When I look down, from lofty mountain grandeur
And see the brook, and feel the gentle breeze.

Chorus

Verse 3:
And when I think, that God, His Son not sparing;
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
That on the Cross, my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin.

Chorus

Verse 4:
When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation,
And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart.
Then I shall bow, in humble adoration,
And then proclaim: "My God, how great Thou art!"