The Friday Poem: Seasonal Signs

The Sunday Recipe: Cream Cheese Thumbprint Cookies – gluten free

My grandmother’s original recipe used strawberry jam and was called a strawberry cream cookie. I wanted to make this gluten free and chose the nutty flours to complement a darker filling, like lekvar or mincemeat.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • ½ cup tapioca flour
  • Powdered sugar
  • Jam of your choice

Directions

  1. Cream butter, sugar, and cream cheese.
  2. Add vanilla and egg yolk, blend.
  3. Measure flours and combine before adding to mixer.
  4. Mix until combined and chill dough for a couple hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 350.
  6. Shape into 1-inch balls.
  7. Using something rounded on the end, like a measuring spoon, dip in powdered sugar and then press into dough to create a well.
  8. Fill with jam.
  9. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet 10 to 12 minutes.
  10. This recipe yields about 5 dozen cookies.

The Friday Poem: Sneaking

The Sunday Recipe: Gingerbread with Applesauce

Gingerbread Cake with Applesauce

Comfort food at its finest, but without the wheat.  Plus, there’s a bumper crop of apples coming on so I wanted to make something that would go well with that. My daughter helped me and we could not resist trying this cake nearly as soon as it came out of the oven. It is rich and heavenly.

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • ½ cup molasses
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup coconut flour
  • ½ cup almond flour
  • ¼ cup tapioca flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • Pinch of cloves
  • ½ cup hot water

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease and line an 8 x 8 baking tin with parchment paper.
  3. Cream softened butter and maple syrup together.
  4. Add in the molasses.
  5. Beat in the egg.
  6. Add the vanilla.
  7. Combine the dry ingredients and sift into the wet.
  8. Stir in the hot water.
  9. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 30 to 35 minutes.
  10. Serve warm or cold.
  11. Applesauce is an excellent accompaniment, you can find my recipe at https://melorajohnson.wordpress.com/2020/07/26/the-sunday-recipe-vanilla-applesauce/  

The Friday Poem: Duke Ellington Plays Satin Doll

This is a poem I wrote last Spring during a jazz poetry event while I listened to Duke Ellington playing Satin Doll. I remembered my aunt talking about going to listen to a big band in Binghamton, NY and dance. I don’t know which band so I took some license here.

The Sunday Recipe: Elderberry Pancake Syrup

Elderberry Pancake Syrup

We have elderberries growing wild around our yard in Upstate New York, mostly planted by birds. I’ve made elderberry jelly over the years many times, and the flavor is dark, rich, and unique. I just love it, but I’m trying to stay away from the sugar. I had the thought to make an elderberry syrup, based on the elderberry jelly recipe, but with maple syrup and minus the pectin. It turned out to be maple syrup with a strong side note of elderberry. I think if I’d used regular sugar it would have tasted more strongly of the elderberry fruit. I’ll probably try something a little different next time but I definitely won’t be throwing this away. We had it on some mascarpone cheese mousse and it was delicious.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup elderberry juice (from about 8 ounces elderberries)
  • 8 ounces maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon butter

Directions

  1. Stem and rinse the elderberries.
  2. Place in a pot and crush.
  3. Bring to a low boil and turn down to simmer for 15 minutes to release the juice.
  4. Strain.
  5. Measure ½ cup juice into a clean pot with the maple syrup, lemon juice, and butter.
  6. Bring to a boil then turn down to a low boil and cook for about 20 minutes, stirring frequently.
  7. Use on pancakes, ice cream, or whatever you like a syrup on.

The Friday Poem: Haiku 8/26/21

The Sunday Recipe: Speedy Tiramisu Mousse

Speedy Tiramisu Mousse

This was adapted from an old South Beach recipe, but I don’t like to use artificial sweeteners much and I ramped up the espresso powder, as well as adding some almond extract for that liqueur flavoring. It makes a great, high protein dessert to follow a salad or other summer meal. The ricotta does give it a slightly grainy texture but it is not off putting, in my opinion.

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso or coffee powder (decaf works fine)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 teaspoons cocoa powder (Ghiradelli is my favorite brand.)
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 15-ounce container ricotta (full fat preferred)
  • Mini chocolate chips to top (optional)

Directions

  1. Measure the espresso powder into a small dish.
  2. Add the extracts and stir to dissolve.
  3. Add the cocoa powder and maple syrup, stir again.
  4. Add the powder/extract/syrup combo to the ricotta and mix thoroughly.
  5. Chill until ready to serve.

The Friday Poem: Haiku 8/19/21

The Sunday Recipe: Peach and Almond Tart

Our local farm store got some lovely organic peaches in this week so I decided to do an almond crust tart with a peach filling. I chose a half dozen peaches and tried blanching them to make peeling easier. Unfortunately, they weren’t really ripe so that didn’t help.  I was also running out of almond flour but found some blanched slivered almonds in the fridge to process and make up the difference. #glutenfree #refinedsugarfree

Peach and Almond Tart

Ingredients

Crust

  • 1 ½ cups almond flour (About 160 grams)
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt

Filling

  • 3 cups, peeled and pitted, diced peaches (about 6 medium)
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon tapioca starch

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare a non-stick tart pan OR prepare an 8 by 8 pan with cooking spray, butter, or oil, and line with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the crust ingredients and press into the prepared pan with your fingers, using the edge of your hand or a finger to press the crust up the side.
  3. Bake for 10 minutes.
  4. While the crust is baking, melt the butter with the maple syrup in the microwave on half power until butter is completely melted, about 1 ½ minutes.
  5. Pour over the peach slices and stir.
  6. Add the vanilla.
  7. Stir in the tapioca starch.
  8. Remove the crust from the oven when lightly browned and puffed, and pour in peach filling.
  9. Bake for 30 minutes.
  10. Allow to cool and set up, at least an hour.
  11. May be served warm or cold. A dollop of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream never hurts.
  12. Enjoy!

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