Gluten Free Lemon-Blueberry Scones w/ Lemon Drizzle

Yummy, yummy.  My favorite!  I love anything with lemons or berries.  Those are my two favorite fruits.  Put them into a dessert and I’m in heaven!  What’s even better is that this recipe is gluten free and vegan, so we can share with friends!

Ingredients just for our gluten-free friends:

  • 1 cup gluten free flout
  • 1/4 cup half & half
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/3 cup blueberries
  • 1/4 tsp lemon extract
  • zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice

For those who are vegan & gluten free:

  • 1 cup gluten free flour
  • 1/4 cup canned coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp neat egg
  • 3 Tbsp vegan butter
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/3 cup blueberries
  • 1/4 tsp. lemon extract
  • zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice

Utensils:

  • Oven
  • Refrigerator
  • 2 bowls
  • Whisk
  • Food processor or pastry blender
  • Parchment paper
  • Pizza cutter
  • Baking sheet

Instructions:

  1. First, preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Place butter in refrigerator for 5-10 minutes
  3. Mix flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, and xanthan gum (dry ingredients) in a bowl.
  4. Whisk egg/neat egg, milk/coconut milk, lemon extract, and lemon zest (wet ingredients).  Set aside.
  5. Take butter/vegan butter and cut into dry mix until crumbly by using a food processor or a pastry blender.
  6. Combine liquid and dry ingredients in one bowl and mix until doughy.
  7. Once mixed, add blueberries.
  8. Spread the blueberry mixture onto a parchment paper and using a pizza cutter, cut into 6 pieces and place them on a baking sheet.
  9. Bake for 15-18 minutes.
  10. Take scones out using a hot glove and let cool.
  11. While the scones are cooling down, mix the lemon juice and powdered sugar.
  12. Once cooled, drizzle lemon mixture over scones.
  13. Enjoy this sweet and sour dessert 🙂

Banana Nut Muffins

If you enjoyed the past few weeks’ popovers and biscuits, then you’ll enjoy this weeks baked goodies.  This recipe is also vegan, but very yummy.  And it’s an all-time classic.  The banana nut muffin.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour (1 cup white and 1 cup wheat)
  • 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • Neat Egg Mix: 4 Tbsp water and 2 Tbsp of egg mix
  • 4 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 4 Tbsp of sugar (2 Tbsp white, 2 Tbsp brown)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (3 medium sized bananas)

Utensils:

  • Muffin tins
  • Cupcake/muffin papers
  • 3 large bowls
  • Mixing spatula
  • Toothpicks

Instructions:

  1. First, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.  While the oven heats up, line the muffin tins with the cupcake/muffin papers.
  2. Mix the flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, mash the bananas.  Then add the almond milk, coconut oil, and vanilla.
  4. Then mix the water and Neat Egg Mix together in a separate bowl.  Once mixed, add it to the bowl with the wet ingredients.
  5. Add the dry and wet ingredients together in one bowl.  Add the chopped walnuts and mix carefully until batter is moistened.  Do NOT over-mix.  The batter should be lumpy when mixing is finished.
  6. Fill muffin tins about half to three quarters full with batter.
  7. Bake in preheated oven.  Check the muffins at 12 minutes with a toothpick.  Continue checking until the toothpick comes out of the muffin clean.
  8. Let cool and enjoy! 🙂

Your muffins should look uniform in texture.  In otherwords, an even cooking throughout the muffin.  The surface should appear lightly browned with a rounded top, not peaked.  Muffins should break evenly without crumbling.  Lastly, the taste should be sweet and delicious!  You can eat these muffins for breakfast or as a small snack before your next workout.

Rosemary Biscuits

Vegan Rosemary Biscuits

Biscuits are delicious, right?  Then what better a recipe for both vegans and non-vegans?  However, it is not for the gluten intolerant.  Sorry guys 😦 Instead of using the commonly used all-purpose flour, you can try tapioca flour!  I have experimented some baking with it, but don’t have any precise measurements.  Measurements change when using different products, because the science behind food is phenomenal.  Everything changes when taking an ingredient out of a recipe, adding an ingredient, or when switching ingredients.  This would be a great experiment for you guys though!  If you try it, let me know how it goes and I’ll type it into recipe format so everyone can see 🙂

Servings: 16 biscuits

Ingredents:

  • 2 cup unsweetened plain almond milk
  • 2 Tbsp distilled white vinegar
  • 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 8 Tbsp vegan butter (Earth Balance)
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary

OR

  • 2 tsp fresh rosemary, and
  • 2 tsp olive oil – for brushing finished biscuits

Utensils:

  • Measuring cup for liquids
  • Measuring cup for dry products
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Pastry cutter (optional)
  • Spoon
  • 1 inch thick dough cutter
  • Silicone basting/pastry brush
  • Baking sheets
  • Parchment paper

Instructions:

  1. First, preheat the oven to 450 degrees F
  2. Add distilled white vinegar to almond milk to make “vegan buttermilk.”  Then set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the dry ingredients.
  4. Add cold butter and use your fingers or a pastry cutter to combine with the dry ingredients until only small pieces remain and they look like sand.  But work quickly!  We don’t want the butter to get warm.
  5. Make a well in the dry ingredients and butter mixture and, using a spoon, stir gently while pouring in the “vegan buttermilk” 1/4 cup at a time.  You might not need all of the “vegan buttermilk” though.  Stir until it is just slightly combined – the dough will be stickly.
  6. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface, dust the top of the dough with a bit of flour, and then very gently turn the dough over on itself 5 – 6 times – hardly kneading with your hands.
  7. Form into a 1-inch thick disc, handling as little as possible.  Do NOT use a rolling pin.
  8. Use a 1-inch thick dough cutter or a similar-shape circular object with sharp and floured edges and push straight down through the dough.  Repeat and place biscuits on baking sheets lined with dough and cut more biscuits.  You should be able to cut 16 biscuits.
  9. Next brush the tops with a little more melted vegan butter and gently press a small divot in the center using two fingers.  This will help them rise evenly.
  10. Bake in a 450 degree oven for 10 – 15 minutes or until fluffy and slightly golden brown.  Remove from oven, brush tops lightly with olive oil, and sprinkle some fresh rosemary on top if desired.

The ideal result would look like light and flaky, evenly browned with a tender crust, and good flavor.  Easily separated sheets of dough will be visible when a proper biscuit is broken open.  Over kneading the dough will result in a compact and tough biscuit.

Sunday Poetry: Blind Fury

when I was young
I had trouble with my anger
not like the cute kids
you see on the TV set
no no no

this was a different beast
five feet of fear and confusion
you couldn’t tell me shit
with the flip of a switch

a spark would turn into wildfire
I’d puff my chest out
and clinch my fist so tight
I could feel my heart
beating through my finger tips

I didn’t know blood could get this hot
the furnace in my stomach
wouldn’t turn off
it just kept pumping

wave after wave
this ugly red gas
waiting to combust
holding back the tears
as they crashed against my eyelids

don’t cry! men don’t cry! suck it up!
thoughts from a boy
who didn’t know the man
he was keeping himself from being

Popovers

Garlic & Cheese Popovers

Starting this week we will learn how to bake some tasty, savory treats!  These treats will include popovers, biscuits, muffins, and scones.  Carbohydrates on top of carbohydrates.  But these can be eaten as a small tasty snack, or a side dish to any meal.  This week we will learn how to bake popovers.  Popovers are like a light muffin made from a thin batter, which rises to form a hollow shell when baked.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups skim or 1% low fat milk
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 2/3 cups (3 oz.) grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Utensils:

  • Oven
  • Egg beater
  • Cutting board
  • Steak knife for cutting
  • Cup measure
  • Blender
  • Tins
  • Fork or toothpick

Instructions:

  1. First things first, preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Beat the eggs with egg beater until frothy (light, white bubbles)
  3. Mince garlic on cutting board with knife
  4. Combine garlic into the frothy eggs
  5. Add milk and cheese to eggs and blend on low until smooth
  6. Add salt and pepper
  7. Pour mixture into tins
  8. Bake for 15 minutes in oven, then reduce to 375 degrees F for a few minutes.  Keep a close eye on popovers.  We do not want to see a collapse due to insufficient baking (egg proteins are not completely coagulated), or a decrease in volume.
  9. When removed fro the oven, prick popovers with a fork or a toothpick to release steam.  If not poked, steam will cause a soggy interior.
  10. Let cool for 2-5 minutes and enjoy!

Sunday Poetry: After The Storm

you were a hurricane
and I was a tornado
wreaking havoc at the same time
ripping through the earth

in different directions
we were never meant
to be together
but the calm breeze fooled us

concealing the storm inside
that was always going to escape
tearing through hearts
with reckless abandon

torn edges and ripped tissue
in the wake
we are what happens
when the love runs out

Super Bowl LI Preview and Prediction

One year ago, we saw one of the greatest defensive matchups in the history of the NFL’s big game.

Super Bowl 50 featured the two best defenses in football, and both units lived up to the hype, delivering a game which featured 34 total points, 509 total yards, and more sacks (12) than third down conversions (4). Somehow, I get the feeling that this year’s championship round will go a little bit differently.

Continue reading “Super Bowl LI Preview and Prediction”

Super Seeds

This nutrition facts for this week include the super food, seeds.  These are referred to as a super food because it is a nutrient-rich food that is considered to be beneficial for our health.  There are many types of seeds, but we will discuss only a few such as hemp, poppy, nigella, sunflower, and mustard seeds.

Hemp Seed: This seed is one of few non-meat sources of food that include all nine amino acids, the building blocks of protein.  Thus, it is full of protein!  10 grams per ounce of serving in fact.  This seed is also a good source of polyunsaturated fats, a “healthy” fat.  Hemp seeds can be used as a garnish or for making salad dressings such as vinaigrette.  I like using hemp seeds for smoothies 🙂

Poppy Seed: Can often be seen on breads or paired with lemon or beets.  Poppy seeds are rich in calcium, iron, contains 5 grams of protein, and 6 grams of dietary fiber per ounce.  A very yummy and one of my personal favorite uses for poppy seed is a Lemon and Poppy Seed Muffin.

Nigella Seed: Also known as charnushka. Common to South Asia, this seed has a dull black appearance.  This seed has the highest amount of dietary fiber (10 grams per ounce).  It has a bitter, smoky aroma and a nutty, peppery flavor.  Good to use on top of Middle Eastern, Eastern European, or Indian breads.

Sunflower Seed: Most commonly eaten seed.  This seed is found inside black and white striped hulls.  One ounce of sunflower seeds is rich in vitamin E and folate.  Sunflower seeds are the source of sunflower oil, which can be used in cooking and salad dressings.  Sunflower butter can be used as an alternative to peanut butter.  However, sunflower seeds are more commonly eaten during baseball games.

Mustard Seed: Although it is considered a seed, it is the world’s most heavily traded spice.  Mustard seeds can come in yellow, brown, or black.  One ounce of mustard seeds contain 7 grams of protein and are a rich source of selenium.  The most common use of this seed is grounded into mustard, but can also be used for pickling.  Vegetables that can be pickled include cucumbers, beets, cabbage, and peppers.

Sunday Poetry: A Stroll Through Shadows

drowning in these yellow ballons
friction sending shocks and shivers
from my head to my feet
a black cat skiddles across the surface

and brings about our demise
ripping through precious treasure
pop, crackle, a mother’s cry
on the east side
on the south side
over west

there’s cities drowning in bullets
and rivers of tears we’ve wept
so I pray into the sky
hoping that somebody’s there
that there’s a reason for my prayer
wishing that my prayers
aren’t just wishes
to the sky so infinite

this vinyl keeps spinning
spinning spinning
they say art imitates life
well shit
they must be right
the wear and tear
of this beautiful plight
is taking its toll
I just wanna know
where the light is

Mad Hatter Tea Party Snacks

Tea Party Snacks

Unlike my previous recipes, this week’s recipe is a series of recipes.  In one of my nutrition classes, we had a tea theme.  So our snacks we made were small but all went great with tea!  This week we will be making strawberry tea biscuits, tahini tea sandwiches, and cucumber tea sandwiches.

Utensils:

  • Zester
  • Cutting board
  • Sharp knife
  • Butter knife
  • Bowl
  • Wooden spoon

Ingredients (Strawberry Tea Biscuits):

  • Biscuits
  • Gluten-free cookies
  • 1 stick vegan butter spread
  • 4 packets raw sugar
  • Strawberries sliced in heart shapes

Instructions (Strawberry Tea Biscuits):

  1. Mix the vegan butter and sugar in a bowl
  2. Spread biscuits or the gluten-free cookies with a thin layer of the sweetened butter topping.
  3. Top the covered biscuits or cookies with two slices of strawberries.

Very fresh and sweet!  The dessert of the tea snacks.

Ingredients (Cucumber Tea Sandwiches):

  • 1 English cucumber
  • Light cream cheese
  • White bread
  • Fresh dill

Instructions (Cucumber Tea Sandwiches):

  1. Rinse the cucumber and dill with cool running water.
  2. Score sides of cucumber with zester.
  3. Place eight white bread slices on cutting board
  4. Spread each slice with about 2 tablespoons of cream cheese.
  5. Place four slices of cucumber on four of the bread slices.
  6. Cover the cucumber slices with another slice of bread.
  7. Cut off the crusts and cut each sandwich into four squares.
  8. Top each of the squares with a small sprig of fresh dill
  9. Serve with small tongs.

Personally, the cucumber sandwiches were my favorite!  They’re so fresh and crisp.

Ingredients (Tahini Tea Sandwiches):

  • Gluten-free bread
  • Sesame tahini
  • Honey
  • Chopped walnuts

Instructions (Tahini Tea Sandwiches):

  1. Place eight slices of gluten-free bread on cutting board.
  2. Spread each with a thin layer of tahini.
  3. Drizzle each slice of bread with honey.
  4. Sprinkle chopped walnuts on each slice.
  5. Trim crusts.
  6. Cut each slice into four triangles.
  7. Serve with a pie lifter since it can easily lift the traingular slices.

For anyone who doesn’t know what tahini is, it’s a nuttier butter than peanut butter and is lighter in texture than PB.  The reason why all these snacks are small is because when drinking tea after a meal, the snacks are lighter than the main course.  I hope these snacks inspire you to have a tea party themed house party!