November 23, 2017

Gingerbread Cupcakes

2014-11-30 20.38.40

For our family’s Thanksgiving Feast (as the grandchildren call it!), we always divvy up of the different dishes that make up our spread.  This year, Robert and I are hosting the Feast at our home, so mine is the turkey to prepare (I always use Alton Brown’s Brined Turkey recipe), along with gluten-free gravy and the stuffing (see my recipe I shared here a couple of weeks ago).   My daughter, Kassia and her mother-in-law Mary Ann are divvy-ing up the sides and salads!  And we each are making a dessert…these spicy-sweet Gingerbread Mini-Cupcakes are my contribution.  Oh, they are so darling!  And just the perfect mouthful (and I mean FULL).  <Of course you certainly could make these in a standard cupcake size, too!>

For those of you who are just beginning to follow the path of gluten-free baking, try this recipe.  When I first made these cupcakes, I used a ‘gf all-purpose flour blend.’ You can pick up a box in the gluten-free section of almost any grocery store. However, if you have a pantry filled with jars of different gluten-free flours, I used ** 1/2 cup brown rice flour, 1/4 cup tapioca flour, 1/4 cup potato starch, 1/4 cup hazelnut flour).  Note that these cupcakes are dairy-free if you prepare them with coconut oil…and of course no whipped cream!

This is a quick recipe to pull together…and the mini-cupcakes only take 10-12 minutes to bake.  We will have ours with Spiced Whipped Cream (see the recipe  here).  But they are equally yummy with a cream cheese frosting or a simple buttercream frosting, too.  Enjoy!

2014-11-29 22.51.34

Mini Gingerbread Cupcakes

ingredients:
1+1/4 cup gluten-free all purpose flour blend **(see above)
1+1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons butter, room temperature (I used coconut oil)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1 egg, room temperature
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup boiling water

directions:

  • set out the butter (or coconut oil) and egg to come to room temperature
  • fill muffin/cupcake tins with liners (mini = 30; regular = 12)
  • preheat oven to 350
  • mix flour(s) and spices together in a small bowl
  • with mixer, cream together butter (or coconut oil) and sugar
  • add egg, then molasses; beating ‘til nice and creamy
  • microwave the water in a measuring cup ‘til boiling; remove and <carefully> stir in the baking soda; set aside to cool slightly
  • add the dry ingredients to the mixer bowl, and blend for about 1 minute ‘til it all comes together
  • continue to blend while pouring in the water; beat for an additional minute or so (batter will seem thin but it very quickly thickens up)
  • fill lined cupcake tins about 3/4 full with batter
  • bake minis for 10-12 minutes (regular-sized for 20 minutes), or ‘til firm to the touch and slightly browned
  • take pan from oven and immediately remove cupcakes to a cooling rack
  • once completely cool, frost as desired

 ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥

God loves you!  ♥  (Don’t ever forget that!)

♥  coleen

Pesto Chicken Broccoli

Look what someone who loves me gave me today…oh! happy me!

2014-08-07 17.34.47

My daughter, Kassia, lovingly gifted me with a jar of her healthy but-oh-so-yummy pesto (and luscious balsamic reduction)!  This is precious stuff…what to make, what to make?  Eventually, I just decided to keep it simple: I took a couple of tablespoons to marinate one pound of chicken tenderloins, which we then grilled. Then cooked up some gluten free pasta, steamed a head of broccoli, and sauteed some mushrooms and onions.  And combined it all together with an additional few tablespoons of pesto.  So yummy!

Kassia graciously is sharing her pesto recipe with us today…. This recipe is vegan and dairy-free (along with being intrinsically gluten free, soy free). Her secret ingredient?  Nutritional yeast.  Yup! Don’t knock it ‘til you try it! (Oh, speaking of trying it…dust your freshly popped popcorn with it!) Here’s a fun link loaded with lots of good info about nutritional yeast, or noosh, and some ideas where to purchase it.  As is, this recipe is dairy-free and vegan.  We topped off the finished dish with some freshly grated Asaiago cheese.  Enjoy!

Pesto

2015-08-27 19.15.32

 

ingredients:
1/4 cup pignoli (also called pine nuts)2014-08-10 17.47.41
1 tablespoon finely minced garlic (she uses jarred garlic, like her momma!)
2 cups fresh baby spinach
1 cup fresh basil (leaves only)
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
juice of 1/2 small lemon
1/4 cup+/- extra virgin olive oil
sea salt, freshly ground black pepper
freshly grated parmesan or asiago cheese, optional

 

directions:

  • in a food processor, process the pignoli  and garlic until minced
  • add the spinach, basil, nutritional yeast and lemon juice; process by pulsing until spinach is finely ground
  • with food processor running, s-l-o-w-l-y pour the oil down the food chute ‘til all is well incorporated
  • season with salt and pepper, to taste
  • this will make approximately 3/4 cup (about 12 tablespoons) of pesto. I only used 5 tablespoons in the entire dish pictured above which made 4 generous servings!

♥   ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥

God loves you!  ♥  (Please don’t ever forget that!)

♥  coleen

Raspberry-Lemon Cookie Cups (paleo, dairy-free, gluten-free)

We recently celebrated the birthday of one of my favorite people in the whole world—my daughter, Kassia!  She continually inspires me with her healthy eating lifestyle.  She endeavors to feed her loved ones (and the rest of us!) with the best quality foods she can find.  So I wanted to {attempt} to do likewise for her.  This healthy but-oh-so-yummy dessert is one that she had mentioned looked good* …and it was!

2015-06-07 15.48.38

These cookie cups are raw…but could also be baked if you prefer.  They have no refined sugar in them, nor any dairy, and are also gluten-free.  They fit perfectly into a paleo-style eating plan, too!  And they are vegan!   They are very delicate, though…so keep the shells refrigerated ’til just ready to serve them.  Then pipe (or scoop) the delicious filling into them, top with a lucious fresh raspberry…and serve.

So, next time you find yourself needing to find the perfect dessert that meets the dietary needs & wants of your guests…try this!  We thoroughly enjoyed them.  Hope you do, too!

Lemon-Raspberry Cookie Cups

raspberry

ingredients:

2 lemons, zested and juiced (you will need the zest from both along with 1 tablespoon of juice)

cookie cups:
1 cup almond flour
1/2 cup coconut flour
2 tablespoons 100% maple syrup
2 tablespoons coconut oil, room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 of the lemon zest
pinch of salt

raspberry filling:
2 ounces freeze-dried raspberries
1 can (14 ounce) coconut cream, full fat variety
1 teaspoon sweetener of choice (I used maple syrup)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
12 perfectly ripe raspberries

directions:

cookie cups:

  • line a standard size (12)  muffin tin with plastic wrap (this is a little tricky and will shift around a bit; that is expected
  • zest and juice the lemons; set aside
  • place all of the ingredients for the cookie cups in your  food processor.
  • pulse ’til well-blended and the mixture starts to come together
  • use a 1-1/2 inch or 2 inch cookie scoop (about 2 tablespoon size) and  divide the mixture up into the lined muffin tin
  • gently press mixture into each cup along the bottom and about halfway up the sides. I used my ‘barely damp’ fingers to do this
  • chill the cookie crust cups in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours (or even overnight)

raspberry filling:

  •  pulse the freeze dried raspberries in your food processor ’til finely ground (you will have a powder); set aside
  • remove the can of coconut cream from refrigerator and drain off any liquid…but not the cream! then scoop out all the thick coconut cream into the bowl of your stand mixer.
  • using the whisk attachment, whisk for about 30 seconds; then add in the sweetener and vanilla. continue to whisk until fluffy (about a minute)
  • (with mixer OFF) slowly add in the raspberry powder using a sifter or small sieve.  you can discard the dried raspberry seeds that remain in the sieve…or add ’em
  • start up mixer again, on medium speed, and whisk ’til well blended and fluffy
  • gently remove cookie cups from muffin tin, using the plastic wrap to lift them.  place on serving dish and pipe or scoop the raspberry filling into each, dividing equally among the 12 cups.  top each with one perfect raspberry and a pinch of the leftover lemon zest
  • (for best texture) serve immediately

♥    ♥    ♥    ♥    ♥

God loves you!  ♥  (Please don’t ever forget that!)

♥  coleen

* I used this recipe as my guideline and made adaptations.

 

Gingerbread Cupcakes

Many of you have gone on Spring Break or are anticipating taking a vacation this summer. It is a time to refresh spirit, soul, and body. Over the next couple of weeks, our faithful bloggers will be taking a ‘spring break’ from writing so that they can come back to us refreshed and freshly anointed.
However, Girlfriends’ Coffee Hour website won’t ‘go black’! We will be revisiting some of our favorite blogs and daily devotions which have blessed us in the past. We pray that each of you, our faithful friends and readers, will continue to start your day meditating on the devotionals and songblogs, and be encouraged and blessed.

Let’s give each of our bloggers a big round of applause, a hug,
and the rest they so deserve. God bless you, ladies!

2014-11-30 20.38.40

For our family’s Thanksgiving Feast (as the grandchildren call it!), we always divvy up all of the different dishes that make up our spread.  This year I was happy to prepare a side dish (Quinoa Veggie Salad w/ Orange Vinaigrette), the beverages (one <adult> choice of which was Apple Cider Sangria), and a dessert…these spicy-sweet Gingerbread Mini-Cupcakes. Oh, they were so darling! And just the perfect mouthful (and I mean FULL).  <Of course you certainly could make these in a standard cupcake size, too!>

2014-11-27 13.11.15

For those of you who are just beginning to follow the path of gluten-free baking, try this recipe.  When I first made these cupcakes, I used a ‘gf all-purpose flour blend.’ You can pick up a box in the gluten-free section of almost any grocery store. However, if you have a pantry filled with jars of different gluten-free flours, I used 1/2 cup brown rice flour, 1/4 cup tapioca flour, 1/4 cup potato starch, 1/4 cup hazelnut flour).  Note that these cupcakes are dairy-free if you prepare them with coconut oil…and of course no whipped cream!

This is a quick recipe to pull together…and only takes 10-12 minutes to bake. We enjoyed ours with Spiced Whipped Cream (see the recipe from last week’s blogpost here).  But they would be equally yummy with a cream cheese frosting or a simple buttercream frosting, too.  Enjoy!

2014-11-29 22.51.34

Mini Gingerbread Cupcakes

ingredients:
1+1/4 cup gluten-free all purpose flour blend **
1+1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon salt
4T butter, room temperature (I used coconut oil)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1 egg, room temperature
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup boiling water

directions:

  • set out the butter (or coconut oil) and egg to come to room temperature
  • fill muffin/cupcake tins with liners (mini = 30; regular = 12)
  • preheat oven to 350
  • mix flour(s) and spices together in a small bowl
  • with mixer, cream together butter (or coconut oil) and sugar
  • add egg, then molasses; beating ‘til nice and creamy
  • microwave the water in a measuring cup ‘til boiling; remove and <carefully> stir in the baking soda; set aside
  • add the dry ingredients to the mixer bowl, and blend for about 1 minute ‘til it all comes together
  • continue to blend while pouring in the water; beat for an additional minute or so (batter will seem thin but it very quickly thickens up)
  • fill lined cupcake tins about 3/4 full with batter
  • bake minis for 10-12 minutes (regular for 20 minutes), or ‘til firm to the touch and slightly browned
  • take pan from oven and immediately remove cupcakes to a cooling rack
  • once completely cool, frost as desired

 ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥

God loves you!  ♥  (Don’t ever forget that!)

♥  coleen

Thumbprint Cookies

It is the season for cookie baskets and cookie exchanges. How many dozen cookies have you made already? How about you, Coleen…(you ask?) Ummmm, zero….well, ‘til these! (I know, I know…better get on it!) Yup, part of my plan for this week. Here’s what I am hoping to accomplish.   I would LOVE to hear what varieties you are making for your loved ones this year!!!

2014-12-14 19.53.53

Mexican Wedding Cookies (Snowballs)
Gingerbread Hearts
Pignoli Cookies (here’s my recipe)
Chocolate Chip Oatmeal
Italian Almond Cookies (Robert’s constant request-here’s my recipe)
Spritz (my all-time, hands-down, yes, please! favorite)

But these are where I started. I just love thumbprint cookies! Most of you know that I bake/cook gluten-free. These also are paleo, dairy-free, and refined sugar-free. (Hope that is helpful to a few of you!) And all of that helps to keep these within my healthy but oh-so-yummy POV!  Enjoy!

Thumbprint Cookies

ingredients:2014-12-14 21.36.14
1/3 cup arrowroot flour
1/3 cup almond flour
1/3 cup coconut flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
5 tablespoons coconut sugar**
1 tablespoon water
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg, room temperature
all-fruit marmalade or jam (I used ginger/orange and raspberry)
1 egg white beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
1/2 cup finely chopped nuts (I used walnuts)

directions:

  • preheat oven to 350
  • line baking sheet with parchment paper
  • in a large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients (first 5)
  • in mixer bowl, combine the wet ingredients (next 4) for 1 minute
  • add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and combine with mixer
  • take tablespoon-sized balls of dough and quickly roll into a ball
  • dip into egg wash and then run through chopped nuts
  • place on lined baking sheet about 1″ apart
  • make an good-sized indentation with your thumb (or a wooden spoon handle)—but don’t poke through the bottom
  • fill the indentation with about 1/2 teaspoon marmalade/jam
  • bake for approximately 15 minutes ‘til just lightly browned; remove from oven
  • carefully transfer to a cooling rack
    makes 15 to 20 cookies

** NOTE: these are on the not-so-very-sweet side…you may want to add additional sugar!

 ♥  ♥  ♥  ♥  ♥

God loves you!  ♥  (Don’t ever forget that!)

♥  coleen

Mini Gingerbread Cupcakes

2014-11-30 20.38.40

For our family’s Thanksgiving Feast (as the grandchildren call it!), we always divvy up all of the different dishes that make up our spread.  This year I was happy to prepare a side dish (Quinoa Veggie Salad w/ Orange Vinaigrette), the beverages (one <adult> choice of which was Apple Cider Sangria), and a dessert…these spicy-sweet Gingerbread Mini-Cupcakes. Oh, they were so darling! And just the perfect mouthful (and I mean FULL).  <Of course you certainly could make these in a standard cupcake size, too!>

2014-11-27 13.11.15

For those of you who are just beginning to follow the path of gluten-free baking, try this recipe.  When I first made these cupcakes, I used a ‘gf all-purpose flour blend.’ You can pick up a box in the gluten-free section of almost any grocery store. However, if you have a pantry filled with jars of different gluten-free flours, I used 1/2 cup brown rice flour, 1/4 cup tapioca flour, 1/4 cup potato starch, 1/4 cup hazelnut flour).  Note that these are dairy-free if you prepare them with coconut oil…and of course no whipped cream!

This is a quick recipe to pull together…and only takes 10-12 minutes to bake. We enjoyed ours with Spiced Whipped Cream (see the recipe from last week’s blogpost here).  But they would be equally yummy with a cream cheese frosting or a simple buttercream frosting, too.  Enjoy!

2014-11-29 22.51.34

Mini Gingerbread Cupcakes

ingredients:
1+1/4 cup gluten-free all purpose flour blend **
1+1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon salt
4T butter, room temperature (I used coconut oil)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1 egg, room temperature
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup boiling water

directions:

  • set out the butter (or coconut oil) and egg to come to room temperature
  • fill muffin/cupcake tins with liners (mini = 30; regular = 12)
  • preheat oven to 350
  • mix flour(s) and spices together in a small bowl
  • with mixer, cream together butter (or coconut oil) and sugar
  • add egg, then molasses; beating ‘til nice and creamy
  • microwave the water in a measuring cup ‘til boiling; remove and <carefully> stir in the baking soda; set aside
  • add the dry ingredients to the mixer bowl, and blend for about 1 minute ‘til it all comes together
  • continue to blend while pouring in the water; beat for an additional minute or so (batter will seem thin but it very quickly thickens up)
  • fill lined cupcake tins about 3/4 full with batter
  • bake minis for 10-12 minutes (regular for 20 minutes), or ‘til firm to the touch and slightly browned
  • take pan from oven and immediately remove cupcakes to a cooling rack
  • once completely cool, frost as desired

 ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥

God loves you!  ♥  (Don’t ever forget that!)

♥  coleen

Pesto Pasta with Grilled Chicken

Look what someone who loves me gave me today?  Oh happy me!

2014-08-07 17.34.47

My daughter, Kassia, lovingly gifted me with a jar of her healthy but-oh-so-yummy pesto (and luscious balsamic reduction)!  This is precious stuff…what to make, what to make?  Eventually, I just decided to keep it simple: I took a couple of tablespoons to marinate chicken tenderloins, which we then grilled; and then topped off sauteed zucchini and onions with another couple of tablespoons and combined it all together with some gluten-free penne pasta. So yummy!

2014-08-07 19.31.01

Kassia graciously is sharing her pesto recipe with us today…. This recipe is vegan and dairy-free (along with being intrinsically gluten free, soy free). Her secret ingredient? “Nutritional yeast.” Yup! Don’t knock it ‘til you try it! (Oh, speaking of trying it…dust your freshly popped popcorn with it!) Here’s a fun link loaded with lots of good info about nutritional yeast, or noosh, and some ideas where to purchase it. Enjoy!

Pesto

ingredients:
1/4 cup walnuts2014-08-10 17.47.41
1/2-1 tablespoon finely minced garlic (she uses jarred garlic, like her momma!)
2 cups fresh baby spinach
1 cup fresh basil (leaves only!)
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup+/- extra virgin olive oil
sea salt, freshly ground black pepper (to taste)

directions:

  • in a food processor, process the walnuts and garlic until minced
  • add the spinach, basil, nutritional yeast and lemon juice; process by pulsing until spinach is finely ground
  • with food processor running, s-l-o-w-l-y pour the oil down the food chute ‘til all is well incorporated
  • season with salt and pepper, to taste
  • this will make approximately 3/4 cup (about 12 tablespoons) of pesto. I only used 5 tablespoons in the entire dish pictured above which made 4 generous servings!

♥   ♥   ♥   ♥   ♥

God loves you!  ♥  (Please don’t ever forget that!)

♥  coleen

 

 

{Dairy Free} Cranberry and Cocoa ‘Nib’ Oatmeal Cookies

My inspiration cookie recipe for today is found here, and is one of my own creations. The cookie recipe listed below underwent a few changes, but the basic idea is the same. Enjoy!

{Dairy Free} Cranberry and Cocoa 'Nib' Oatmeal Cookies www.GirlfriendsCoffeeHour.com #christmascookies

Ingredients List

  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup coconut oil OR Earth Balance
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 cups steel-cut oats
  • 1/2 cup cocoa ‘nibs’ (Can’t find nibs in your area? Substitute chocolate chips or walnuts for a slightly different texture and flavor!)
  • 3/4 cup fresh or frozen cranberries

Preparation Instructions

  1. Maple syrup, sugar, and coconut oil (or Earth Balance) should be placed in mixer bowl and blended well.
  2. Add eggs and vanilla. Briefly mix again.
  3. Add all dry ingredients to bowl. Mix well.
  4. Remove mixer bowl from stand and add berries and cocoa ‘nibs’.
  5. Stir until just combined.
  6. Measure dough onto sheet pans by rounded tablespoon.
  7. Bake in 350 degree oven for 12 to 15 minutes.
  8. Let cool on wire racks.

Enjoy these cookies with a cold glass of milk (dairy free or regular, your choice!) or a hot cup of coffee. Delicious and healthy!

Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer

 

Cheers!

Cheers!

Since the website is called Girlfriend’s Coffee Hour, I think we should have a post actually about coffee!  One of the hardest things I’ve ever done for my health was changing how I took my morning coffee.  I was a teaspoon of white sugar plus half and half kind of girl.  I was also a big fan of Coffeemate creamer – you know, Irish Cream, French Vanilla, Hazelnut – the good stuff. Unfortunately, white sugar first thing in the morning creates a huge insulin spike, setting you up for inflammation, sugar cravings, energy crashes – the list goes on.  And I dare you to pick up a bottle of flavored coffee creamer at the store and tell me what half of those ingredients are. Chemical city!  So I decided to surf the web and find something to jazz up my coffee (because a splash of almond milk just isn’t making magic in my cup.)  After some experimentation, I present to you:  Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer!

This recipe is dairy-free, gluten-free, and processed sugar-free.  I used maple syrup for a little sweetness, but you can use honey or stevia if you prefer.  This recipe calls for an egg.  Try to find organic, best-quality eggs – hopefully you can find a farmer’s market that carries local eggs, because that really lowers any salmonella risk.  If it freaks you out, you can skip the egg, but it really does add body and substance to the creamer.  I keep this in a mason jar in my fridge.  I go through it in about a week and that seems to work well.  It may get solid, and that’s fine – just scoop out a ball of creamer with a tablespoon and it will melt immediately in your coffee.  If you want to make a fall treat for the kids, heat up some milk in a pan on the stove, stir in a quarter cup of the Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer, and garnish with whipped cream and a little extra cinnamon!

Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer

(makes about 16 ounces)

Ingredients:

  • 1 can (13.5 ounces) full-fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (or 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or try half vanilla and half almond extract!)
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (optional, but I like it!)

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients to the blender and mix for 30 seconds.  That’s it!  Pour into a jar with a lid and store in the fridge for up to one week.

Enjoy!

Dana