Fave Human + Birthday = A Very Extra Cake

Alright alright I’m a few days late and SO delinquent on anything resembling regular posts here but….. better late than never.

Charles’ birthday was this week so you better believe there was CAKE! Birthdays are a great excuse to be very extra and bake a layer cake with six layers (yes. I did) – this is the Fave Human we are talking about, after all. He’s cute. He can stay.

Good news is, since I waited a few days to post, I can relay the comments – everyone who ate it thought it was delicious, so I can safely say this one is a winner. Almond cake, marionberry + blackberry and chocolate ganache filling, and vanilla buttercream. Nothing in here is overly complicated; they just are stellar when put together. This is also one of those that can be made in stages, which is such a boon for a busy week. I ended up making the filling over the weekend, the cake layers monday, and then frosting, ganache and assembly on wednesday, his actual birthday. Besides, freezing cake layers actually makes them easier to slice (at least I think) and helps flatten them out a little.

This is a pretty dense cake so a little goes a long way – this was a 7″ cake to feed 6 at dinner, plus about a fourth of it leftover – obviously, who doesn’t love leftover cake. With six layers it makes for a pretty tall slice. It’s sweeter than my average dessert but hey, birthdays only come around once a year. It IS whole grain, so there’s that. Can’t let my dessert morals slide completely….

As to why I haven’t really had anything resembling regular posts on here… I *have* been baking, but a) I keep making variations on the same galette and I don’t need to be spamming your feeds with endless galette variations and b) camp is literally IMMINENT and I have been eyeballs deep in director stuff since basically… May… so that plus a full time job = not so much free time for blog things. Promise I’m still baking on a regular basis even though it doesn’t always show up here! Headed up to camp on the 15th, and I can’t wait.

The summer fruit right now is outrageously good… my philosophy is to mess with it as little as possible so it can shine as much as possible; hence the endless riffs on berry-stone fruit galettes.

case in point.

Anyway. Next time you need a layer cake for an occasion – or no occasion, maybe just for fun – might I recommend this one? I promise it’s delicious :)

I hope everyone has a lovely holiday weekend – hugs from my kitchen to yours.

Almond Cake with Dark Berry Filling, Chocolate Ganache, and Vanilla Icing

Not too sweet almond cake sandwiched with a marionberry & blackberry filling, dark chocolate ganache, and a vanilla buttercream. A celebration cake at its finest. Yield: 1 7-9″ cake, depending on what pan you use; serves several. This recipe is written slightly differently than usual; less of a list and more akin to suggestions. Most components can be made ahead, making this a good one to make in stages.

For the cake:

I use this cake, as written with the exceptions as follows: reduce sugar to a scant 1c per batch (I used fair trade cane sugar here); sub whole wheat pastry flour (*not straight whole wheat, it’s not fine enough).

For a 7″, 6 layer cake (3 layers, halved), I made 1.5 batches. I tend to make them ahead of time, wrap well in plastic wrap (the ONLY time it is allowed in my kitchen) and freeze them, at least overnight. Thaw in the fridge overnight before using or at room temp. Typically I will top them for flat layers, like I did here, but you don’t technically have to (though if you do, you can eat the scraps and everyone knows that’s the best part).

For the marionberry & blackberry filling:

Honestly, just use jam! It’s delicious, easy and just about the perfect consistency. If you’re feeling fancy, you can make a berry curd, like this:

Take 2 cups, ish, of frozen berries (I used blackberries & marionberries), and toss them in a saucepan. Add 1 tbsp maple syrup, zest and juice of one lemon, and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5-6 min, mashing the berries slightly with a spoon, until most of them have burst. Remove from heat, and strain into a heatproof bowl, through a fine mesh strainer, pressing to release as much juice as possible. Discard the seeds, or use them creatively somewhere else (maybe a smoothie or something?) In a small bowl, whisk together 2 tbsp cornstarch + 2 tbsp water and set aside.

Return strained berry juice to the saucepan, and whisk in the cornstarch slurry. Turn the heat back up to medium and whisk constantly, until the fruit starts to simmer. Reduce heat to low, cook for 1-2 minutes more (you’ll see it visibly thicken), then remove from heat and let cool completely. Chill in the fridge before using. Can be made up to one week ahead; store in an airtight jar in the fridge and stir well before use.

I ended up using a combination of both jam and curd, just for fun and also for flavor. You do you! All jam is completely fine and much faster.

For the frosting:

1/2 c unsalted butter, room temperature
1 c powdered sugar
2 tbsp plain yogurt
1 tbsp vanilla extract
3 tbsp whole milk

This is a very straightforward buttercream – using a hand (or stand) mixer, cream butter until light and fluffy. Add in powdered sugar a bit at a time, beating after each incorporation. Add yogurt, vanilla and whole milk and beat to combine. The frosting should be smooth and spreadable. Can be made ahead and refrigerated; beat before using to fluff it up. I do prefer to make this immediately before using just for ease, but it works just fine ahead of time too.

I like my cakes lightly frosted; if you’re making a cake that is going to be fully frosted with frosting also between the layers, make a double batch of what is listed here. This made exactly enough for me to use a thin layer between the cake layers + frost the whole thing naked cake style, but I only wanted a thin layer so that was exactly what I was after.

For the ganache:

Rough measurements – I used about 1c of dark chocolate + 1 tbsp coconut oil. Stir in a double boiler until melted, then use before it starts to set up again as it cools. Reheat as needed to bring it back to a drippier consistency if desired.

To assemble:

I wanted a 6 layer cake; to do that, I baked three 7″ layers, then topped them to flatten them out, and halved them. A serrated or just very sharp knife works well for this; just go slow.

Spread a thin circle of frosting on your cake stand or plate, just smaller than the cake itself. Plop down the first layer, followed by a layer of frosting, a layer of berry curd/jam, and a layer of ganache, then a layer of cake, then frosting, berry, ganache…. rinse, repeat. Once you have the final cake layer on, use an offset spatula to frost the rest. If you want a naked cake look, smooth it on but let the cake layers show like mine; otherwise, you can do a crumb coat, refrigerate, and then come back for the second frosting layer.

Top with ganache – you can have it drop down the sides, or not (I chose to not) – and fresh berries. Refrigerate before serving if it’ll be longer than a few hours and/or your kitchen is very warm; mine wasn’t so I left it out. It’ll do at room temp for a few hours but refrigerate any leftovers. Serve & enjoy!

On Saturdays we wear pink

She’s back!

Oof it’s been an age since I posted anything… I got stuck in a seemingly never-ending oven saga, but I think we’re safely out the other side of that now with a new range. Seems like moving is akin to starting a new relationship – you have to work out a new routine with the appliances and the space. Finally feels like I’m getting there with my kitchen – having gone through three different ranges in literally 2 months doesn’t help things, ha. Very grateful to be cooking at home again!

The not-so-new apartment is feeling more and more homey these days; I hung up a bunch of art and sorted out my disaster of a closet (1906 construction means I have a very all purpose “walk through” closet between my kitchen and bathroom that has to do triple duty for utilities, coats and linens and is extremely visible at all times so…. yeah. tricky tricky)

sunny turret, happy plants

So anyway! Back to normal baking programming. I made a few batches of cookies at C’s in the last month or so but nothing much beyond that – this was a welcome breath of fresh air. I missed making pretty things.

It’s rhubarb season! I think this might have been some of the first – hadn’t seen it in the market before now. I love how tart and jammy it is once baked – I never smother mine in gloppy sugar so if you like tart things, you’re in the right place.

This galette is for those of us who are engaged in an ongoing love affair with almond croissants (me. I resemble this remark) – it has a layer of jammy rhubarb, a layer of almond frangipane (fancy name for almond paste fluffed up with an egg) and a layer of slightly crunchy cornmeal and whole wheat crust. Perfect with ice cream for dessert or on its own for breakfast or a snack.

Happy weekend & happy baking!

Rhubarb and Almond Frangipane Galette

Lightly sweet and perfect for spring! If you love almond croissants like I do, this is your jam. Layer of jammy rhubarb, layer of almond frangipane, crunchy cornmeal crust. Whole grain and refined sugar free. A Wait are those Cookies original. Yield: 1 galette, serves several.

for the crust:
1 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c cornmeal
1/2 tsp sea salt
4oz/1 stick of unsalted butter, cubed
1 tsp vanilla extract
2-3 tbsp ice water

In a food processor, pulse together whole wheat flour, cornmeal, sea salt. Add in cubed butter and pulse until it resembled coarse sand. Add vanilla and ice water 1 tbsp at a time until the dough starts to come together – I usually start with 3 tbsp and then add 1T at a time from there. Turn it out onto a board and knead it into a ball. I like to roll it immediately since it’s pretty forgiving dough – typically I haven’t had trouble with this dough sticking. I roll it between two sheets of parchment paper and use the bottom one to bake the galette on; makes an easy transferral method between cookie sheet & cooling rack. If you’re not rolling immediately, stuck it in the fridge on a plate. Can be made ahead the night before if need be. If you are rolling immediately, roll it out into a circle or rectangle about 1/4″ thick.

For the almond paste:
1/2 c almond flour
1/2 c slivered almonds
1/4 tsp sea salt
3 tbsp maple syrup
1 small egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract

3-4 Rhubarb stalks, thinly sliced
Coconut sugar + slivered almonds for decoration

Preheat the oven to 425.
In a food processor, blend almond flour, slivered almonds and sea salt until homogenous but slightly gritty. Add in maple, egg, and both extracts, and blitz until combined.

Spread the almond paste carefully (it’s sticky!) over the middle of the dough, leaving a 1″ border, then pile on the sliced rhubarb. Fold up the sides of the dough over the fruit and sprinkle with coconut sugar and slivered almonds. Brush the dough with milk or half and half. Pop in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, until the crust is lightly browned. Remove to a cooling rack and let cool completely before slicing and serving. Store leftovers in the fridge overnight – it’s great for breakfast :)

Happy 2022!

Hi hello!

Wow it’s been an AGE. I didn’t mean to go this long without posting, but I actually didn’t bake as much as usual over the holidays and I also enjoyed some well deserved time off, so that meant I was outing-and-abouting more than I was thinking about new things to bake. C’est la vie!

I spent a week up in PDX with my parents – such a great week. Workout, eat, make more food, snuggle cat, read, puzzle, rinse, repeat. It snowed while I was up there too, which made for an extra magical holiday.

those tiny paws are wrapped FIRMLY around my heartstrings all the way from pdx
Thea is a champion head-butter

We did do some baking – mom and I made apple/blueberry/date rolls (adapted from this recipe; filling is basically just a compote of those three things cooked down with a bit of cinnamon and butter) plus of course cookies and a really delicious galette with pears and marionberry (rule number one: when in Oregon, eat ALL THE MARIONBERRIES)

Came back, unpacked and repacked and headed up the next day to ski with the fave human for three days over New Years! Hands down best new years and best skiing I’ve had in several years. The conditions were literally amazing; we skied nearly three full days and the snow was incredible for all of it. 10/10 recommend for best way to spend new years!

Then I came back, and a day later officially started a new job! See, told you there was a lot going on. I moved to LEDDY MAYTUM STACY Architects (LMSa) as their marketing manager and I am verrryyy excited to be working for a firm that is mission-driven and so focused on sustainability. Wheee!

So now I’m a week into my job and settling back into a (new) routine after a few weeks off, which means it’s time to get back on the regular baking schedule! This weekend’s crisp was a product of the eternal “what do I have on hand that I can use in order to avoid a trip to the market” game – and I’m not sorry with how it turned out! I love these crisps for how adaptable they are. This one is gluten free, vegan, and only has a few tablespoons of maple in the entire thing, making it very breakfast/snack friendly. I’ve made endless variations of this previously – this one is cranberry and apple with a cinnamon crisp topping, perfect for winter.

I hope you had a wonderful holiday season – happy 2022 from my kitchen to yours!

plants hiding off-camera

Apple, Cranberry & Cinnamon Crisp

Gluten free, dairy free, vegan & refined sugar free. Yield: 1 8-9″ crisp; serves several! A Wait are those Cookies original. Lightly sweet, perfect for wintery breakfast, dessert and anything in between.

For the filling:

4 granny smith apples, peeled and chopped into cubes
1 c fresh cranberries (or frozen)
1 tbsp tapioca starch
zest and juice of one lemon
1 tbsp maple
1/4 c water

For the crisp:

1 cup old-fashioned oats (use certified gluten-free oats for a gluten-free crisp)
½ cup firmly packed almond flour
½ cup chopped walnuts
1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4 c flaked unsweetened coconut (optional, good if you have it!)
2 tbsp maple syrup
heaping ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
1.5 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 c coconut oil, melted

Preheat the oven to 350.
Toss apples and cranberries into your baking dish of choice (my dish is 8×8, 2 qt capacity; 9″ square or 9″ deep pie dish would also be fine). In a liquid measuring cup, whisk together the tapioca starch, maple, water until combined. Pour the mixture over the fruit and toss to combine. Bake for 20 minutes.

While the filling is baking, make the crisp. In a mixing bowl, stir together the oats, almond flour, chopped walnuts, coconut, salt and cinnamon. Mix in the maple, vanilla, and coconut oil, stirring until everything is mixed thoroughly.

Once the filling has baked for 20 minutes, stir it and and redistribute evenly in the dish. Plop spoonfuls of the crisp topping evenly over the filling – no need to pack it down. Return the dish to the oven and bake for 25 to 30 more minutes, until the filling is bubbling around the edges and the top is golden.

Let the crisp rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Serve with vanilla ice cream, obviously! Keep leftovers, covered, in the fridge for 2-3 days (yeah right – would take some major feat to make it last more than overnight..)

All things cranberry

Happy December!

What, ALREADY? That happened fast.

At least it’s finally gotten cooler/cold in the city – we had some weird unseasonably warm weather a few days ago but then, BAM, cold. I’m definitely okay with it, I’d rather have it feel like holiday weather.

Happy to report the bay is as cold as ever. I’m still swimming in my sleeveless wetsuit but miiiight be switching back to sleeves here pretty soon; the temperature after-drop once I get out is no joke. Still love it of course; I saw three seals the other day! One popped up right near me, so cute.

Since posting last, Thanksgiving happened – I made two pies (of course) and cranberry sauce. A real winner this year – I added fresh ginger and dates. Luckily, I have a thing of it frozen, so it’ll probably show up in a dessert sometime pretty soon – I’ll share the recipe then.

I have a very seasonal galette for you today – apple, cranberry & fig. I wonder how many galettes I’ve actually made over the course of my life? A lot, that’s for sure. I love anything cranberry (the more tart, the better) so this is a definite win for me. It’s also insanely easy and requires very little effort, BUT is super tasty and pretty. Refined sugar free, whole grain and easily vegan (just change out the butter); it makes a great dessert or late brunch / breakfast snack with coffee.

Happy holiday month! I hope everyone is starting to enjoy the season.

happy cactus

Cranberry, Apple & Fig Galette

Refined sugar free and whole grain; easily vegan with a swap of vegan butter (brush with non-dairy milk instead of half and half). Yield: 1 galette, serves 4-6. A Wait are those Cookies original.

for the crust:
1 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c cornmeal
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp cinnamon
4oz/1 stick of unsalted butter, cubed
2-3 tbsp ice water

In a food processor, pulse together whole wheat flour, cornmeal, sea salt, and cinnamon. Add in cubed butter and pulse until it resembled coarse sand. Add the ice water 1 tbsp at a time until the dough starts to come together. Turn it out onto a board and knead it into a ball. I like to roll it immediately since it’s most pliable – typically I haven’t had trouble with this dough sticking. I roll it between two sheets of parchment paper and use the bottom one to bake the galette on; makes an easy transferral method between cookie sheet & cooling rack. If you’re not rolling immediately, stuck it in the fridge on a plate. Can be made ahead the night before if need be – let it sit on the counter for a bit before rolling it out if it’s been refrigerated.

for the fruit:

apples, peeled & chopped (I used two granny smith)
~1.5 c fresh cranberries (I used half a bag straight from the freezer)
3 tbsp fig jam (I have some fruit sweetened preserves that I like; but anything will work)
1 tbsp half and half or cream, for brushing on the dough
coconut sugar for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 425. Roll out the dough between two pieces of parchment paper until it’s about 1/4″ thick. Spread the jam in a thin layer over the middle of the dough. Pile the fruit in the center, leaving a border of about 3″. Fold up the sides of the dough over the fruit. Brush the dough with an half and half or cream, and sprinkle with a little coconut sugar. Dot fruit with butter if you like, though it’s not strictly necessary. Pop in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, until the crust is lightly browned. Remove to a cooling rack and let cool completely before slicing and serving. Store leftovers in the fridge overnight – it’s great for breakfast :)

Cobbler Two Ways

Hi hello!

Happy end of weekend but almost holiday week! I can’t believe it’s Thanksgiving already, that completely snuck up on me.

I thiiiink I know what I’m baking, maybe? Probably. At least I have a very good idea…

As for normal baking tendencies, I’ve now made us this cobbler two weeks in a row with different fruit and slightly different biscuits – it’s a winner! I’ll include notes for both versions in the recipe itself. Very forgiving, very delicious.

This weekend’s was cranberry + blueberry, plus I added dark chocolate to the biscuit topping… highly recommend. I love anything cranberry so was very excited to find them on sale at the market the other day; I may or may not have bought a couple extra bags to stash in the freezer. To be fair, I’m on cranberry sauce duty for turkey day so at least two will be used for that, ha.

As always, per usual, this was excellent with ice cream and also excellent for breakfast. I dropped a shower of pomegranate seeds over the top which not only was colorful and pretty, but also added a nice crunchy contrast.

We’ve had some beautiful sunsets lately in the city! Inevitably they look better to the naked eye than through a camera lens but… I try. Besides, I’m blessed with a very unobstructed western view, so I try to take advantage and admire them as much as I can.

Somehow the day got away from me today and I’m HUNGRY… time for dinner! I think it’s going to be veggie nachos… that’s a very Sunday dinner for me. I have perfect little 1/4 sheet pans that make a single serving of nachos exceptionally – I only have these ridiculous little pans because my oven in grad school was basically the size of an Easy Bake oven, and I’ve hung onto them ever since. Good thing too, since they’ve gotten a second life as nacho pans – what better afterlife could you ask for?

In other news, finally finished this guy! 16×20 on stretched canvas; so pleased with how it came out. A little bit of my home-away is on my walls now!

Happy Thanksgiving week!

Cranberry & Blueberry (or apple!) Cobbler with Cornmeal & Dark Chocolate Biscuits

Two variations are shown here: one is cran-apple and with plain biscuits (no chocolate; added cinnamon on top) and the other is cran-blueberry with dark chocolate biscuits. Both are delicious! Whole grain, refined sugar free. Adapted from Food52, here. Yield: 9″ or 10″ cobbler; serves 5-6.

for the cobbler:
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup fine or medium cornmeal
2 tbsp coconut sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces
1/2 c buttermilk*
2 tsp vanilla extract
Optional: 1/4 c dark chocolate, finely chopped

*I was out of buttermilk both times I made this (it’s not something I usually have on hand) – so I subbed in 1/4 c plain whole-milk yogurt whisked with 1/4c milk, adding milk until it reached the consistency of buttermilk. Any of the standard buttermilk subs will work well here, if you don’t have it

for the fruit:
2-3 c fresh (or frozen) cranberries
4 (about 1½ pounds) sweet-crisp apples, such as Fuji or Gala, cut into ¾-inch chunks OR 1c blueberries (fresh or frozen)**
zest and juice from one lemon
1 tbsp tapioca starch
1 tbsp coconut sugar + extra for sprinkling
Pinch kosher salt
Cinnamon, for topping (optional)

**I’ve made both the cran/blueberry and cran/apple version; they’re both delicious

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, coconut sugar, baking powder, and salt. Use your fingers to rub the butter into the flour mix until it resembles a coarse meal with butter pieces no larger than peas.
Stir in the buttermilk/buttermilk sub and vanilla until just combined, followed by chocolate (if using). Place in the refrigerator while you make the filling.

In a baking dish of choice (deep 9″ pie dish, 2qt baking dish, 9 or 10″ cast iron skillet, etc) , toss together the cranberries, apples or blueberries, lemon zest and juice, tapioca starch, coconut sugar, and salt. Drop ~6 large dollops of batter over the fruit, leaving some areas of fruit exposed. Sprinkle with a bit more coconut sugar and cinnamon, if desired. Place the pan on a sheet pan to catch any drips. Bake the cobbler until the fruit is bubbly and the biscuits are golden brown, 45-50 min (tent with foil after 35 minutes to prevent the biscuits from getting too brown.) Let cool slightly (or completely) before serving. Keeps well overnight in the fridge; leftovers make great breakfast, either cold or reheated.

Monochromatic & delicious galette

Hi blog friends!

I’ll freely admit I haven’t felt very blog-y lately, probably because I have been moping about having two metatarsal stress fractures in my left foot. Ew, ugh. I’m in a boot for minimum 3 weeks but probably more like four…. I go for a checkup with the podiatrist on Wednesday so we’ll see. Crossing fingers and trying to be so good about staying off it but OY I just wanna run around! At least I can still swim, thankfully. That is fully keeping me sane (plus I have mastered chair cardio with I’m sure looks ridiculous but is actually decently effective.)

sad reality. yes, I was very careful when I got up on the chair

Alright though, enough whining. I got to spend time with my bestie Ashley who came down to visit me from Idaho (hi Ashley!!) and we made up for the four year hiatus by talking pretty much non-stop.

hooray, a drive-able vista point! we drove out here so I could look at something other than my walls for a minute

I also made this monochromatic, toasty fall galette to share with C this weekend; we ate it over a few board games and nearly finished it in under 24 hours. Actually, as I write this, it’s probably completely gone, ha.

I love anything fig, but there’s something about the combo of apples + figs with rye + hazelnut that’s a real winner. I kept going back to trim off slivers. I know it’s not the most colorful thing I’ve ever made, not by a long shot – but it’s delicious, and simple.

I hope all of us have weeks that are like this galette…. full of delicious things, and simple.

Apple & Fig Galette with a Rye & Hazelnut Crust

Whole grain & refined sugar free (the fig jam I use is fruit sweetened, but there’s also so little per serving that I wouldn’t sweat it if it wasn’t) – full of late fall flavor and so simple to throw together. Excellent by itself or with ice cream! A Wait are those Cookies original, riffed on approx 1000 times. Yield: 1 galette, serves 4-6 (or just two, ha)

for the crust*:
1/2 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c dark rye flour
1/4 c cornmeal
1/4 c hazelnut meal
1/2 tsp sea salt
4oz/1 stick of unsalted butter, cubed
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
2-3 tbsp ice water

*the rye and hazelnut make this dough a little softer and stickier than straight whole wheat – make sure you roll it between parchment. I found it to be fine to work with immediately after making (ie no need to chill it in a disc before rolling) but if it’s giving you problems, stick it in the fridge for a bit to relax.

In a food processor, pulse together whole wheat flour, rye, cornmeal, hazelnut meal, and sea salt. Add in cubed butter and pulse until it resembled coarse sand. Add vanilla and almond extracts, then the ice water 1 tbsp at a time until the dough starts to come together. Turn it out onto a board and knead it into a ball. I like to roll it immediately since it’s most pliable – typically I haven’t had trouble with this dough sticking. I roll it between two sheets of parchment paper and use the bottom one to bake the galette on; makes an easy transferral method between cookie sheet & cooling rack. If you’re not rolling immediately, stuck it in the fridge on a plate. Can be made ahead the night before if need be – let it sit on the counter for a bit before rolling it out if it’s been refrigerated.

for the fruit:

apples, peeled & thinly sliced (I used three of them – 2 granny smith & one lady alice)
3 tbsp fig jam (I have some fruit sweetened preserves that I like; but anything will work)
1 tbsp half and half or cream, for brushing on the dough
coconut sugar for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 425. Roll out the dough between two pieces of parchment paper until it’s about 1/4″ thick. Spread the jam in a thin layer over the middle of the dough. Pile the fruit in the center, leaving a border of about 3″. Fold up the sides of the dough over the fruit. Brush the dough with an half and half or cream, and sprinkle with a little coconut sugar. Dot fruit with butter if you like, though it’s not strictly necessary. Pop in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, until the crust is lightly browned. Remove to a cooling rack and let cool completely before slicing and serving. Store leftovers in the fridge overnight – it’s great for breakfast :)

Endless galettes

Hi friends!

I actually made this last weekend but then never got around to posting… I’ve been working on a new painting in my off hours, and that is happily taking up most of my (creative) free time. I’ll share it here when I’m finished!

This weekend is VERY chill – no baking actually, so obviously I treated myself to a favorite croissant instead. This galette was too good not to share though, so here it is. I love the rosemary addition for something slightly savory and pleasantly herb-y – it goes extremely well with vanilla ice cream, but is just as good on its own. Since we’re just starting to work our way out of the stone fruit season out here on the west coast (yayyy time for FIGS), I’m trying to make the most of them.

This was made with peaches from a local farm, actually – I got lucky and found some perfectly ripe ones in the market. I say lucky since I hadn’t been planning ahead, and was shopping the day before I made this… usually that’s no dice unless I can get to the farmer’s market.

Let’s see, what else is new..

Heading up the coast this week to spend some quality time with C for my birthday! He tells me there is an oven where we’re staying, so we’ll see what kind of baking shenanigans I’ll get up to. I’m looking forward to lots of hiking and quiet time on the coast.

from a swim earlier this week – the light was just so pretty

I hope it is equally gorgeous outside where you are – it’s just the right combination of sunny/foggy/cool/warm here in SF so I’ve spent most of the day outside. Happy weekend!

Blackberry, Peach and Rosemary Almond Galette

Whole grain, refined sugar free – yet another endless riff on late summer galettes. I love the rosemary here for a slightly herb-y addition; it’s excellent with ice cream or on its own. Yield: 1 galette; serves several. A Wait are those Cookies original.

for the crust:
1 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c cornmeal
1/2 tsp sea salt
2 tsp fresh rosemary, very finely chopped
4oz/1 stick of unsalted butter, cubed
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
2-3 tbsp ice water
slivered almonds, for decorating

In a food processor, pulse together whole wheat flour, cornmeal, sea salt and rosemary. Add in cubed butter and pulse until it resembled coarse sand. Add vanilla and almond extracts, then the ice water 1 tbsp at a time until the dough starts to come together. Turn it out onto a board and knead it into a ball. I like to roll it immediately since it’s most pliable – typically I haven’t had trouble with this dough sticking. I roll it between two sheets of parchment paper and use the bottom one to bake the galette on; makes an easy transferral method between cookie sheet & cooling rack. If you’re not rolling immediately, stuck it in the fridge on a plate. Can be made ahead the night before if need be – let it sit on the counter for a bit before rolling it out if it’s been refrigerated.

for the fruit:

peaches, sliced (I used roughly 2 large ones)
2 c blackberries (fresh or frozen)
2 tbsp apricot jam (I like St. Dalfour’s as it’s sweetened only with fruit juice)
1 tbsp half and half or cream, for brushing on the dough

Preheat the oven to 425. Roll out the dough between two pieces of parchment paper until it’s about 1/4″ thick. Spread the jam in a thin layer over the middle of the dough. Pile the fruit in the center, leaving a border of about 3″. Fold up the sides of the dough over the fruit. Brush the dough with an half and half or cream, pat the slivered almonds onto the sides and sprinkle with a little coconut sugar. Dot fruit with butter if you like, though it’s not strictly necessary. Pop in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, until the crust is lightly browned. Remove to a cooling rack and let cool completely before slicing and serving. Store leftovers in the fridge overnight – it’s great for breakfast :)

Gratitude & summer cobbler

Hello from the long weekend!

Summer cobbler for you today – I found a glut of blackberries on sale at the market so of course had to get them… plus more pluots! I’ve been lucky to find those also continually on sale, and since those aren’t something I’d ever be able to find frozen (like blueberries or something) I almost always will get them. Plus, their season is so short!

I’m breathing a large sigh of relief this weekend – the Caldor fire came extremely close to camp, and it’s really only through the insanely hard work of the firefighters and some natural advantages (lots of granite) that we came through relatively unscathed. Not fully out of danger yet as there are plenty of spot fires nearby still and the fire is in no way majority contained, but I’m still feeling mostly just a huge weight off. It feels at this point as if we’ve come through the worst of it. Regardless, it was a super stressful week and I’m looking forward to some chill time this weekend.

A few photos of the best place, just because.

and a throwback to the very first time tiny me went to Two Sentinels!

This weekend is off to a great start with an early run, coffee and baking! I love my quiet Saturday mornings. Plus, this morning is foggy in the city and we know how much I love that ;) aaaand my quiet morning rolled right into a pizza lunch with a bestie so this weekend day keeps getting better.

This cobbler is one of those easy summer desserts that is heavy on fruit (as I firmly believe ALL summer desserts should be) – it comes together really quickly either by hand or with a food processor. I actually prefer cutting in the butter by hand as I find it relaxing, and it also means I don’t have to wash out my food processor!

I hope your long weekend is full of relaxing and fun, whatever that looks like for you! Mine has friends, fave human, lots of exercise and reading (ha – not shocking)! Sending happy long weekend vibes from my kitchen to yours.

Pluot and Summer Berry Cobbler with Poppyseed Biscuits

A perfect use of those late summer berries! Whole grain, refined sugar free and full of fruit – this uses blackberries, blueberries and pluots for an easy cobbler that comes together in a flash. Yield: 1 8-9″ cobbler; serves several! A Wait are those Cookies original.

for the biscuits:
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 oat flour
1/4 c rolled oats + more for sprinkling
⅔ cup medium-grind cornmeal
1 tbsp coconut sugar
1.5 tsp poppyseeds
1 ½ tbsp baking powder
¼ teaspoon sea salt
4 tbsp cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 tbsp whole milk yogurt
⅔ cup half and half (or heavy cream) + more for brushing
1 tsp coconut sugar for sprinkling over the tops

for the fruit:
4 large pluots, cut into ~1″ pieces
2 c blackberries
1 c blueberries
juice and zest of one lemon
1 tbsp tapioca starch
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 tbsp maple
1/4 water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For filling, in a large bowl, toss together pluots, berries, lemon zest, and juice. In a small bowl, whisk together tapioca starch, extracts, maple, and water, then pour over the fruit. Allow mixture to stand while making the biscuits.

For the biscuits: in a large bowl, stir together whole wheat flour, oat flour, cornmeal, 1/4 c oats, coconut sugar, baking powder and salt. Add in the butter and either using a pastry cutter or your fingers, work it into the dry ingredients until the mixture is pebbly and resembles coarse sand (basically, you want little butter pieces evenly distributed throughout the dry ingredients). Add in yogurt and half and half, stirring until the dough just starts to come together. This dough is a little on the slightly sticky side, so you’ll make drop biscuits out of it – no need to roll it out.

Scrape filling into a 2 1/2-quart baking dish or very deep pie plate (whatever fits!) You should be able to get about 8-9 biscuits out of the dough – scoop up large spoonfuls of dough, roughly shape into rounds, and arrange them on top of the filling. Brush with extra half and half, and sprinkle with oats and coconut sugar. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until filling is bubbling and biscuits are golden. Serve warm or at room temp; store leftovers in the fridge overnight.

Crumb cake and more pluots

Hi friends, happy weekend! I wish it was the beginning of it and not the end, but at least there’s a long weekend upcoming.

I have a cake for you today! Cakes feel few and far between around here, but I stumbled on this recipe and had to try it. I had stashed some ricotta in the freezer awhile back (not the best for its texture if you’re going to eat it plain, but if you’re baking with it, it’s fair game!) and wanted to pair it with the stone fruit that is all I want these days.

This cake is a pleasantly dense, nutty little thing – I think of it as a breakfast or brunch cake; something that is perfect alongside coffee. It does well served warm out of the oven, or chilled for a couple of hours in the fridge (my favorite, since the chilled cake texture is amazing).

The whole thing is very lightly sweet – there are only two tablespoons of maple in the entire thing, so the almondy dough and fruit flavors can really shine. It’s whole grain and infinitely adaptable – don’t have pluots? No problem – sub in figs, peaches, nectarines, plums, or any other fruit that catches your fancy. I think any berries would be excellent here, and I’m dying to try it with fresh figs – we’re almost into peak fig season here on the west coast!

We had it for brunch this morning – post workout and pre hiking (me) and cycling (him). Exercise nerds? Yeah, we are.

I got a new wetsuit and I’m SO excited about it – I was swimming without one the last week or so but I really love having one for my morning swims – it’s just so much more pleasant in the bay with one on, ha! This one is sleeveless, which is clutch. Not having anything over my shoulders is amazing.

my favorite swimming conditions – calm and foggy

Not a whole ton going on in other news – just cruising along into September (birthday month!) and crossing my fingers for no excessively hot weather in SF because we just know how much I looooove that, ha NOT.

I hope everyone out there had a good weekend! Sending good thoughts from my kitchen for good weeks all around.

Tuscan Ricotta Crumb Cake with Pluots and Blackberries

A pleasantly dense, lightly sweet breakfast cake – or dessert – but really excellent with coffee. Yield: one 7″ cake, serves several with small wedges. Refined sugar free and whole grain; easily gluten free with a cup for cup flour blend. Recipe gratefully adapted from Jules’ Kitchen, here!

For the dough:
1 c whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 c shredded coconut
2 oz almond flour
1/2 tbsp baking powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
2.5 tbsp unsalted butter, cold & diced into small cubes
1 tbsp pure maple syrup
1/2 tbsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 egg, beaten

For the filling:
1 c whole milk ricotta (drained if especially runny)
zest of one lemon
1 tbsp maple
1 tsp vanilla extract
heaping handful of fresh blackberries
4 small pluots

Preheat the oven to 350, and grease a 7” cake pan with butter (alternatively, a 6 or 8” would also work – just adjust the bake time up or down accordingly) Line the greased pan with parchment paper and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together pastry flour, coconut, almond flour, baking powder, and sea salt. Work the diced butter into the dry ingredients with your fingers or a pastry cutter until it resembles coarse sand. Add maple, vanilla, and almond, followed by the beaten egg. Use your fingers or a fork to work the egg into the dough – it doesn’t need to come together into a ball, it just needs to stick together when you press it with your fingers. Press half the dough into the cake pan to form the bottom layer.

In a large bowl, whisk together ricotta, lemon zest, vanilla, and maple. Spread the filling over the bottom crust, and top with blackberries and sliced pluots. Sprinkle the rest of the crumble topping over the fruit and ricotta.

Bake for 35-40 minutes – the topping should be lightly browned. Remove and let cool in the pan for at least ten minutes, then lift it out onto a cooling rack to cool completely. Slice and serve warm, or chill in the fridge for a few hours before serving. Store leftovers in the fridge for 1-2 days.

Stone Fruit Season

I’ve decided that it’s very hard to not enjoy peak stone fruit season.

It’s literally all we want to eat (okay not true, I’m never NOT in the mood for thai food, ha) but for everything else right now… bring on the stone fruit!

This weekend was full of pluots, courtesy of my imperfect produce box – these were slightly scarred but so perfect, taste-wise. I wanted a crumble since I hadn’t done one in awhile; I love that they keep the focus on the fruit. It’s basically fruit and nuts, at least the way I make them! They end up making great breakfast the next day – not shocking to anyone who’s read this blog for awhile :)

The color of these lil beauties is amazing! Just look at it:

This is riff number approximately 10000 of fruit crumbles… I’ve probably made this exact version at some point in the past and just didn’t write it down. Regardless, it’s a much-loved favorite with the two of us! Super simple, very adaptable and quickly made.

Let’s see, what else! Had a little al fresco drawing adventure with a friend today, super fun as I haven’t drawn from life in a loooong time. I was still drawing buildings but hey, usually it’s from a photo! The wind proved challenging but it wouldn’t be the SF that I love without excessive wind, so we just made it work.

Lots of swimming for me lately of course – without a wetsuit! It’s the “warm” bay water season so I’ve been taking advantage of it. It’s maybe a strange choice of things to get you out of bed in the morning but I love my 6am swims, wetsuited or not! I find them extremely satisfying.

I suggest seizing the stone fruit moment while it’s still peak season! The closer we get to autumn, the less perfect they are. Get on it!

Pluot, Blueberry & Ginger Crumble

A Wait are those Cookies original. Yield: 1 9″ crumble, serves 4-6. Refined sugar free, dairy free, gluten free and vegan with a grain free option. Lightly sweet, nutty and fruit-forward.

For the crumble

1 c almond flour, packed
1/4 tsp sea salt, heaping
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c chopped walnuts
1/3 c oats* (Omit for grain free)
1/4 c unsweetened coconut
1/4 c crystalized ginger
1 tbsp vanilla
1 tbsp maple
1/4 c melted coconut oil

~6-7 pluots (they’re usually on the small side)*, chopped into slices or chunks
~1.5 c wild blueberries (mine were frozen)
1 tbsp tapioca starch + 1/4 c water
1 tbsp maple
zest and juice of one lemon

*since pluots are usually on the small side, I recommend using 6-7 of them; the flavor balance is perfect when it’s about half pluot, half blueberry

Preheat the oven to 350 and grab some kind of 8″ or 9” baking dish – this is the least fussy recipe ever, so square, round, etc – whatever you have is fine! I used a deep 9″ pie plate. In your baking dish of choice, toss together pluots, blueberries, lemon juice and zest. In a smaller bowl, whisk together tapioca starch & water, add maple, then pour over the prepared fruit. Bake for 20 minutes.

While the fruit is baking, make the crumble. In a large bowl, stir everything together: almond flour, salt, cinnamon, oats (if using), chopped walnuts and coconut, maple, vanilla, and coconut oil together, then stir in crystallized ginger.

Remove the fruit from the oven, and toss a bit to redistribute. Drop the topping over the fruit, and bake for another 25 minutes until the top is lightly golden brown and the fruit is bubbly. Remove and let cool completely before serving. Excellent with ice cream! It’s also fabulous cold after being refrigerated overnight and served straight out of the fridge – highly recommended. Leftovers keep well covered in the fridge for a day or two but I dare you to have any ;)