Late summer desserts should by all means be messy & delicious

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Hello friends!

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It feels like it’s been ages – such a busy summer. Tomorrow is September already!! I can hardly believe it.

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I took advantage of a crop of slightly below-par blueberries (as in, I was finding they were a bit too squishy to want to eat out of hand but were perfect for jammy goodness) to make these super simple blueberry crumb bars. Essentially they’re made of two very basic essentials: blueberry chia jam and almond flour dough. They take only about 30 min to throw together and bake, and they are GREAT with ice cream, just saying. The general consensus was that they were like pie, only not pie, and very easy pie at that.

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Also, they can feed all your friends! Free of the glutens, the grains, the lactoses, and the refined sugars – everyone will love you. Just don’t feed them to your friends who are allergic to nuts, that would be no bueno.

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Perfect late summer eats, when it’s hot and you want something to use up the absurd amount of fruit you’ve just bought at the market. No? Just me? I know you do it too…. summer fruit is too good to resist.

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(those are spoon marks, btw, not bite marks.. just in case you were wondering, we ate it straight out of the pan with spoons because, why not?)

I’ve been enjoying a ton of nice walks – mostly home from work – but I still get some great views and it’s great to move around after sitting all day. There have been some beautiful sunsets visible from my apartment too!

A few photos of life lately…

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I hope you’re kicking back and relaxing this holiday weekend! I may have more baking on tap, we’ll see we’ll see ;)

Happy Saturday!

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Blueberry Hazelnut Crumb Bars

Gluten & grain free, refined sugar free, and lactose free! Paleo, basically. Perfect use of a crop of late summer bloobs… yield: 1 8″ pan, serves several. A Wait are Those Cookies original.

For the blueberry filling

2 c blueberries (I used a combo of fresh & frozen)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tsp tapioca flour
1/4 c chia seeds

In a small saucepan, heat blueberries, cinnamon, sea salt, and tapioca until just barely boiling, 5-8 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the chia seeds; let cool.

For the crust & crumble

2 c almond flour
1 tbsp vanilla
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp maple
3 tbsp melted ghee
1/3 c chopped hazelnuts

Preheat the oven to 350 and line some kind of 8” pan with parchment – this is the least fussy recipe ever, so square, round, tart pan, etc – whatever you have is fine! I used an 8” round cake pan. In a large bowl, stir almond flour, vanilla, salt, maple and ghee together. Reserve half a cup and stir in the hazelnuts (this will be the top bit) – set aside. Press the rest of the dough into the base of the pan, and bake for 12-15 minutes until set. Remove from the oven and top evenly with blueberry mixture. Crumble the rest of the reserved hazelnut crumble on the top of the blueberries, and bake for another 23-25 minutes, until the top is lightly golden brown and the blueberries are bubbly. Remove and let cool completely before serving. It’s also fabulous cold – I made mine the night before serving, 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 ;)

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The only acceptable summer blues

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Hi! I made galette again because it was so good last time I just couldn’t stay away. Besides, it’s still gloriously late summer so I will stay happily buried in late summer fruit desserts until seasonality dictates otherwise.

These are the only acceptable kind of summer blues!

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I also sojourned up to Portland for a minute last weekend and caught up with all the PNW buds and did ALL the EATING. No really. ALL of it. Rather glad to be back to eating my kale and eggs, I will say — love traveling and love eating but omg I need a break after awhile! So now I’m back and galetting around, blah blah the usual.

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I may have gone a little overboard in my excitement of finding an enormous (2 pound!) clamshell of organic blueberries at whole foods for a reasonable price…. apparently they disappeared about 2 hours later too so obviously it was meant to be and my excitement is warranted. There were 2 full cups of blueberries in this thaaang, which meant that I was more than slightly concerned with its structural integrity. However! The crust held its own (barely) and all the goodness stayed contained within its slightly leaky exterior. Galette structural engineering for the win.

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For those who love lemon and blueberry, this is for you. Flaky crust, jammy blueberries and tart lemon curd. Late summer shenanigans don’t get much better than this! Messy, beautiful and delicious, just like summer should be.

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Grain Free Blueberry Galette with Lemon Curd

Grain free, gluten free, paleo, and refined sugar free! Easy to put together and obviously delicious or I wouldn’t be shoving these photos into your inbox. Yield: 1 largish galette; about 9″ across. Serving size is up to your discretion… like the last one, this one was dessert and breakfast with a bit of leftovers for 2. No shame.

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For the crust:

I used the same one as I did for the last peach galette I did; but omitted the almond extract.

  • 1.5 c almond flour
  • 1/2 c tapioca starch/flour
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 6 tbsp salted butter
  • 1 eggs, divided
  • 1/2 tbsp coconut sugar
  • scant tbsp vanilla extract (yes, that is a tablespoon!)

Glaze:

  • 1 tbsp coconut sugar for sprinkling over the crust
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten for the egg wash
  • a few small chunks of butter to dot the top of the fruit

For the paleo lemon curd: I used meyer lemons for this recipe here from What the Fork blog (which was absolutely delicious); any lemon curd recipe will work just fine; here is a traditional one that I made a billion years ago that is also spectacular (just excuse the horrendous pictures). Make this a day before (or earlier in the day) so that it has time to cool completely before you put it into the galette. It will thicken / not run all over the place, and you’ll thank your foresight.

For the blueberry filling:

  • 1.5 c fresh blueberries
  • 2 tbsp tapioca starch
  • 1 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

For the crust: In a food processor or high-power blender (I used a Vitamix), pulse almond flour, tapioca starch, salt, and butter, and pulse to combine until it looks like coarse meal. Add in egg, coconut sugar, and vanilla extract and pulse just until combined. Turn out onto a piece of plastic wrap, shape into a disk and chill in the fridge for at least an hour, or up to overnight.

While the crust is chilling (or a day before, which I found to be easier), make the lemon curd! See links for recipes.

Once the dough has chilled, toss the ingredients for the filling into a large bowl: blueberries, tapioca, coconut sugar, vanilla extract, and lemon juice; toss to coat and incorporate.

Preheat the oven to 375, and roll out the dough into a circle between two pieces of parchment. It should be uniformly thick; about 1/4″ but no thinner. Slide the dough and the bottom piece of parchment paper onto a baking sheet. Spread a thick layer of lemon curd in the middle of the dough, leaving about a 2″ border all around. Pile the blueberry filling onto the lemon curd, and carefully fold the edges of the crust up around it, sealing any cracks that happen. Some juices will probably leak out when you bake it, but that’s no big deal. Brush the crust with the beaten egg wash, and sprinkle with a bit of coconut sugar. Dot the tops of the blueberries with a few small chunks of butter. Bake for 35-40 minutes – mine is usually always perfect at 35; the crust should be lightly golden and firm to the touch.

Remove from oven and let cool on the baking sheet for about 10 minutes; then slide the whole piece of parchment+galette onto a cooling rack to cool completely. Serve with extra lemon curd and vanilla gelato! Galette leftovers keep on the counter overnight and make a fabulous addition to breakfast; if you keep leftovers any longer I would store them in the fridge. Store any leftover lemon curd in the fridge!

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Even fruit likes to get dressed up sometimes

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I’m on sort of a roll here to see how many desserts I can make in my fave 8″ cast iron skillet… I’ve recently re-embarked on a cast iron love affair, and it is PERFECT for dessert. Points for charm, too, of course. So! This week’s incarnation is cobbler. Or some type of fruit dessert with topping. There are so many different ones: crisp, crumble, cobbler, grunt, slump, pandowdy, buckle.. now that I’ve listed them all, I feel compelled to go look up the differences. Hold that thought…

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Holding?

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Okay. I’m back.

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Woah. Information overload. Apparently grunts, pandowdies and slumps are the New England version of cobbler, whereas cobbler is more traditionally from the Deep South. Huh. Who knew. Anyway, they’re basically the same thing anyway: take some delicious fruit and smother it in a biscuit dough / pie dough incarnation / crispy crumble thing and bake that thang in a skillet. Any way you slice it, they’re obviously delicious, so let’s just leave it at that. Despite the research I’m still not sure if this is *technically* a cobbler, but who cares. Let’s not get technical, it’s the weekend!

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Look at me doing research for fun not even a week out of graduate school! What. Weird. I’m going to stop now, that was quite enough, thank you.

Cobbler! Ahhhh. Summer fruit. Probably one of my favorite eating seasons. For when you have all the fruit and can’t possibly sit and eat it all. And for when you want your fruit to have a crunchy, crumbly delicious topping. Because even fruit likes to get dressed up sometimes.

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Peach, Blackberry and Blueberry Almond Quinoa Cobbler

This could easily be gluten free — just sub the spelt flour for more quinoa flour or any other gluten free flour of choice. Could also be dairy free: sub in melted coconut oil for the butter. Refined sugar free, healthy fats, and full of antioxidants. Perfect summer dessert, and a perfect reason to bust out that smallish skillet of yours. Yield: 1 8″ skillet, serves 2-4 depending on how hungry you are and whether this gets eaten for dessert and then for breakfast…  A Wait are those Cookies original!

For the fruity goodness:

  • 2 c peaches, chopped into 1/2″ chunks
  •  1 c blackberries*
  • 1 c blueberries*
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp organic cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp date sugar

*mine were previously frozen; if yours are too, just thaw them first

For the cobbler topping:

  • 1/2 c almond meal
  • 1/2 c quinoa flour, toasted**
  • 1/4 c spelt flour
  • 1/4 c date sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 egg, lightly whisked
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 tbsp salted butter, melted and cooled

**toast the flour over medium heat in a smallish skillet, stirring occasionally until fragrant (less than 5 minutes usually; take it off just before it starts to brown)

Grease an 8″ cast iron skillet, or another 8″ pan of choice with coconut oil. Preheat the oven to 375.

In a large bowl, toss fruit with cornstarch, lemon juice, and date sugar. Set aside. In a smaller bowl, whisk together almond meal, toasted quinoa flour, spelt flour, date sugar, baking powder, sea salt, and cinnamon until combined. Stir in whisked egg, maple, and vanilla, followed by the melted butter. Stir until just incorporated.

Pour the fruit into the prepared skillet, and top with spoonfuls of batter. Bake for 30 minutes, until the topping is lightly browned. Cool for at least 10 minutes before eating.

Highly recommended with your ice cream of choice (in this case it was paleo gelato made from cashews and maple syrup, I’m obsessed). Store any leftovers in the fridge!

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baconbaconSHORTCAKEbaconbacon

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Helllooooooo, I made you something with BACON!

And maple, and blueberries, and none of those sneaky little glutens. Tsk tsk.

Gluten free maple bacon shortcakes with vanilla blueberries!

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I know I know, for those of you who know me on fb or instagram, you already saw this nonsense. But life is life, and this is the first time I’ve had five minutes to sit down and actually write something.

Today also happens to be the last day of my job! Sad :( I will definitely miss everyone. But that also means that I leave for camp on Friday (wheeeeee!!!!!) and then grad schools starts four days after I get back from camp. Heeelllpppppp where has the time gone?! Jeez. To compensate for the ridiculousness that is my schedule right now, I seized a free hour on Sunday and made shortcakes! Also because I always seem to have this habit of baking right before camp, and that just couldn’t be ignored.

And also, bacon.

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Maple and bacon are a match made in heaven, and then you add shortcakes and blueberries and maybe ice cream, and then you have nirvana. Or at least something really close…

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Side note. Most annoying thing ever is when your long skirt gets trapped under the wheels of your desk chair. Grrrr.

Back to food.

And a doodle!

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And trolls!! These are the cutest little guys ever. And no, I don’t think they’re creepy.

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But actually, let’s go back to food…

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Gluten Free Maple Bacon Shortcakes with Vanilla Blueberries

Gluten free, egg free, and possibly dairy free (mine weren’t, but you could always sub coconut oil for the butter). The bacon flavor isn’t overwhelming, but it adds a nice savory note that contrasts the sweet of maple and blueberries. These stay fairly flat, but I found I could slice them easily with a paring knife. Yield: 5 large shortcakes. Shortcakes adapted from From Jessica’s Kitchen!

Shortcakes:

  • 1.5 c white rice flour, plus more for rolling
  • 1/4 c tapioca starch
  • 1/4 c ground flaxseed
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • very scant 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 c unsweetened hemp milk (or other non dairy bev)
  • 1/2 tbsp melted butter
  • 1.5 oz salted butter, chilled + diced
  • 1.5 oz chilled bacon grease
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup*
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

*more to taste if you want… mine were lightly sweet

Blueberries:

  • 1 pint of blueberries (or more — I used 1 pint for three of us, but the next night I used fresh ones as I used all of the sauce)
  • a good splash of vanilla
  • 1/2 tbsp chia seeds

Preheat the oven to 350, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together rice flour, tapioca starch, flaxseed, baking powder, and sea salt. In a liquid measure, stir together melted 1/2 tbsp of butter and hemp milk. Using a fork, or a pastry cutter, or your fingers (my preferred method), cut the butter and bacon grease into the dry ingredients, until it resembles coarse sand and the butter/bacon grease chunks are evenly distributed. Stir in hemp milk/butter, followed by maple syrup. Mix just until combined.

Flour a clean work surface, and turn out the dough. Pat it into a circle about an inch thick, and use a cookie cutter (my method) or a biscuit cutter or a knife or whatever to make the shortcakes. Transfer them to the prepared baking sheet, and bake for 14-16 minutes, or until lightly golden. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely, or eat warm.

While the shortcakes are baking, cook the blueberries over medium heat in a small saucepan. Once they have gone all saucy and delicious with a few berries still left whole (roughly 5-10 minutes, I never actually time this), remove from heat and stir in vanilla and chia seeds. It will thicken as it cools.

Serve shortcakes with blueberry sauce and any type of ice cream / non dairy dessert / coconut cream that rocks your world!

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Happy Earth Day! Go show Mother Nature some love.

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Okay so actually it’s been about a million years since I made these, but they were too good not to share! So better late than never, riiiiight?

You see, I’ve been mega busy doing awesome things like finding this:

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And being up at dawn to witness this (Happy Earth Day today, by the way! Go out and give a tree some love):

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Oh. And I spend an inordinate amount of time here. Whole wheat croissant+jasmine green tea = heaven.

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And doing other things like attempting to eat as much as I possibly can, whilst being off sugar (yep, that happened. Including dates! Amazing, I know. I’ve added dates back in now, but expect to see natural, non-refined sweeteners on here from now on in baked treats). Trust me though, I feel quite a bit better for having cut processed sugar out nearly completely (special occasions not withstanding! Birthdays. Duhhh).

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Busy busy busy.

But don’t worry, still eating ridiculous hippie-type things like eggy pumpkin messes and a mega huge ton of veggies. As per usual, nothing has particularly changed! Except maybe the consumption of avocado and liquid aminos and nutritional yeast has gone up… not that I even remotely thought that first one was even possible! Ha. Power to the AVO!! I’m sure another savory recipe is coming your way soon, watch this space for further developments!

But anyway. Cookies. Long time coming, I made these a few weeks back and they were simple, delicious, and good for you. What’s not to love?

And yes, I know they’re blue. Who *doesn’t* like some blue food now and again?! Especially when it’s naturally occurring… see? It’s kind of like mother nature is throwing a party for you, on your plate. A party of awesome, antioxidant-filled blueness. To which the free radicals in your body are NOT invited, by the way (and after you eat these cookies/blueberries, there will be less nasty free radicals to float around and cause problems anyway! Mother Nature always knows how to throw an awesome party).

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Blueberry Almond Coconut Cookies

Yield: about 11-12, mine spread out quite a bit and were on the flatter side. Soft, but delicious. Recipe lightly adapted from Ari’s Menu, here!

Healthy fats [almonds+coconut], antioxidants [blueberries], vegan, and gluten free! Winners all around.

  • 1.5 c almond meal
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp organic, non GMO cornstarch
  • dash of salt
  • 1/4 c maple syrup (I use grade B organic)
  • 1/3 c light coconut milk (canned)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c frozen organic blueberries

Preheat the oven to 375, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine almond meal, baking soda, cornstarch, and salt. Add maple, coconut milk, and vanilla, and stir to combine. Gently fold in blueberries (this turns the batter blue. I’m in love). Drop by the spoonful onto your prepared cookie sheet, and bake for 12-14 minutes until set and golden (Mine went a little on the longer side—they’ll still be soft when done, so tap the tops to test them). Let sit for a few minutes (they’re delicate!), then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

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Pie.

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Pie.

I love that word. It’s so simple, but it brings with it so many positive associations! Fruit. Ice cream. Family. Eating al fresco. I’m sure you have your own; those are mine. Besides all that, I love that I can pack a dessert full of fruit and then call it good for me… and then call it snack. And breakfast. And maybe lunch. Why not? Fruit+whole grains+healthy fats = a balanced(ish) meal, happy tummy, and happy soul.

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This post is rather short, as I’ve been a bit under the weather. I also loooove the photos, so this time, less is more!

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Life is short. Eat pie. Be happy!

Simple Blueberry Pie with a Coconut Oil Crust

I used the coconut oil crust recipe from Food 52, here, with only a slight modification (ww flour, always!). I wanted to use coconut oil, since it provides a nutritional bump in healthy fats (among other things like antioxidants, antimicrobials, and a host of other wonderful things). I always struggle with pie crust, partially from lack of patience and practice, and also probably because I’ve never used a trusted recipe. I really liked this one though—not only did it come together relatively easily, but it also was quite probably the best-tasting crust I’ve ever made. Winner. I’ll be making this one again, when I can get my hands on some peaches :)

I used blueberries I’d frozen in the summer—if you use frozen fruit, no need to thaw it first.

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Whole Wheat Coconut Oil Crust

  • 2.25 c whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp coconut sugar (or other granulated sugar)
  • 1/2 c coconut oil, cool enough to be solid
  • 1/3-1/2 c ice water

You can do this by hand, or use a food processor if you want to save time, like me. Food processor method: toss flour, salt, and sugar into the processor and pulse to combine. Add in solid coconut oil, and pulse again. It should start to come together when you pinch a bit. Pulse in 1/3 c ice water, until the dough starts to come together even more; adding ice water a tablespoon at a time until it holds together. You should be able to hold a handful without it disintegrating into crumbs. A few crumbly bits are okay, but it should be relatively easy to form it into a ball to roll out.

Flour your work surface and rolling pin. Toss dough onto the freshly floured surface (or, if you’re smart, onto wax paper so you can pick it up easily… definitely remembered that trick *after* I rolled it all out on the counter, oops), and roll it out until it’ll fit into your pie dish of choice. I used a deep-ish one, so I had enough crust left over for a few decorations but not for a lattice.

Gently lift crust into the pie pan, and crimp the edges so it looks nice! Prick the bottom a few times to prevent sogginess (no one wants that). I baked mine immediately—if you’re going to wait a bit, wrap the ball of it in plastic wrap and store it in the fridge, letting it come to room temperature before rolling it out.

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Blueberry Biz!

  • enough blueberries to fill your pie pan of choice. I probably had 1.5-2 c, and could have used a bit more if I’d had them.
  • squirt of lemon juice (about half a lemon’s worth, mine were Meyer lemons, hooray!)
  • 2-3 tbsp brown sugar, depending on berry sweetness
  • 1/6-1/4 c whole wheat pastry flour*

*apologies for the indefinite measurements… when I make pie filling, I usually don’t measure and taste as I go!

Preheat oven to 425, and make sure you have your prepared pie crust lurking around on hand somewhere.

Toss blueberries with lemon juice, brown sugar, and flour in a large bowl. Add blueberries into the prepared pie crust. If you have leftover crust and want to roll it out so that you have an excuse to play with cookie cutters, by all means do so! Place little pieces of crust on top of blueberries, and pop the entire thing into the oven for 15 minutes on 425, then lower the temp to 350 for another 45 minutes. Pie is done when the juices are a little bubbly and the crust is browned. I like my blueberries to have more body and be less like soup, so I took mine out at the hour mark. Let cool for a bit before slicing! Pie stores well in the fridge for the next day’s breakfast… and is reeeeally good with whipped coconut cream. Just sayin’. (I used a can of Trader Joe’s Coconut Cream, chilled it for a few hours, scraped off the cream and whipped it with an electric mixer. I added just a hint of vanilla and maple syrup).

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And one more… just because I happened to make this on Pi Day, and seriously, who doesn’t like extra pictures of pie??

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