Yes it’s green, you’re not imagining it!

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Happy Saturday!

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I’ve had a great weekend already, and it’s only Saturday night – two G&S shows, quality time with fave human & great friends, and lots of sleep… no complaints.

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Also, there was tart! (it has since been demolished)

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No, your eyes are not deceiving you…. the crust is in fact green! There is matcha sneaking around in there – not a ton, just enough to bring an earthy balance to the tart lemon curd. I LOVE meyer lemon season – arguably, they are one of my favorite citrus (though I quite possibly say that about ALL citrus…), and I also love matcha. I was initially unsure about the combination of matcha and lemon, but it turned out to be a happy experiment that worked out quite nicely.

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As usual – great dessert, equally great breakfast. Here is a photo essay of the tart getting slowly eaten over the course of making breakfast, before we actually sat down (in our defense, we both woke up hungry! ha)

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Gluten free & refined sugar free – in fact, this has very little maple in it, even as far as my desserts go – only one tbsp in the curd and two in the crust! That’s a big win in my book.

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Happy weekend!

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Meyer Lemon Tart with a Matcha Crust

Tangy, tart and delicious. Perfect spring dessert that is light and fresh – meyer lemons really shine here, if you can find them. The lemon curd can be made several days in advance and refrigerated, if you need to split up the baking time. Gluten free and refined sugar free. A Wait are Those Cookies original. Yield: 1 9″ tart, serves several.

For the crust:

1.5 c almond flour
1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 c cornmeal
heaping 1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp matcha
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
6 tbsp coconut oil, melted

In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, shredded coconut, cornmeal, sea salt, baking soda, and matcha. Add in vanilla, maple, and melted coconut oil, and stir until completely combined. The dough will look crumbly, but you’ll be able to press it together with your fingers.
Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease a 9″ tart pan (w/ removable bottom) with coconut oil. Press the crust into the plate and up the sides with a spoon or your fingers, creating a smooth edge (or not, your call!). Poke the bottom with a fork a few times, and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and let cool for a few minutes. Increase oven temp to 375.

Maple Lemon Curd*:

2 whole eggs
3 egg yolks
1/3 c lemon juice
zest of 4 lemons
pinch of sea salt
2 tbsp maple syrup
4 tbsp butter
1 tsp vanilla

*I made a batch and a half for a higher curd to crust ratio – feel free to do like I did. If you do, use 3 whole eggs & 4 yolks + another half of all other ingredients listed except maple (I like my curd to be tart!)

I used a double boiler for this lemon curd, which is a game changer. Highly recommended! Heat water in the bottom of the double boiler until it’s at a high simmer. In the top of the double boiler, whisk together eggs, egg yolks, lemon zest and juice, sea salt, and maple syrup. Add in the butter one tbsp at a time, whisking continuously, not adding the next tbsp until the first is completely melted. Whisk in vanilla. Cook, stirring constantly, until the lemon curd thickens and will coat the back of a spoon (or your whisk leaves tracks) – usually around 5 to 8 minutes. It’s a noticeable change when it happens, so just watch the cooking magic! Remove from heat, strain through a fine mesh strainer, and store in a glass container in the fridge until ready for use.

Pour the curd into the crust and smooth the top. Bake at 375 for 8-12 minutes, until the curd is barely set. Cool completely before slicing and serving – store in the fridge until serving and keep leftovers covered in the fridge.

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Citrus Shenanigans

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Hi!

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Today, I have more citrus for you! Winter citrus is my favorite. I’m also obviously loving panna cotta tarts lately – for whatever reason they are supremely satisfying to make, and so simple!

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Plus, there are a thousand and one variations waiting to be explored, which is the seriously fun part.

This one was definitely a winner (I say was, as I suspect it shall not last long) – lightly citrusy and served with extra citrus slices for that tart punch. The coconut milk comes through as a nice background note.

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Besides, we both LOVE poppyseed – back in the day, those poppyseed muffins were my JAM (I know you know the ones I’m talking about)… C and I were discussing earlier how as you unwrapped them they were just aggressively MOIST. It’s a thing!!! But undeniably delicious, despite being full of, ahem… crap.

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This tart totally solves the poppyseed craving without all the nasty crap in the muffins – and without putting you in a food coma after eating. Win all around!

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We ate it last night as a quick late snack after the opera and then again this morning  as part of a light breakfast after a few hours of gym climbing (my arms are officially blown, but that fully laid back 11a is MINE! ha).

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Happy weekend! I hope you are seriously enjoying yours :)

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Grapefruit and Meyer Lemon Coconut Panna Cotta with an Almond Poppyseed Crust

A Wait are those Cookies original! Yield: 1 9″ tart; serves several. Gluten free, dairy free & refined sugar free! A perfectly light dessert or fancy breakfast. It needs to be made ahead anyway, making it perfect for breakfast!

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For the crust:

1.5 c almond flour
1/3c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/3c cornmeal
1/4c poppy seeds
heaping 1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
6 tbsp coconut oil, melted

In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, shredded coconut, cornmeal, poppy seeds, sea salt, and baking soda. Add in vanilla, maple, and melted coconut oil, and stir until completely combined. The dough will look crumbly, but you’ll be able to press it together with your fingers.
Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease a 9″ tart pan (w/ removable bottom) with coconut oil. Press the crust into the plate and up the sides with a spoon or your fingers, creating a smooth edge (or not, your call!). Poke the bottom with a fork a few times, and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and let cool for a few minutes.

For the panna cotta:

1 package unflavored powdered gelatin
1.5 cup full-fat coconut milk
1.5 tbsp vanilla bean paste
1/2 c meyer lemon & grapefruit juice
scant 1/4 cup maple
Scant 1/4 tsp sea salt

For garnish: sliced meyer lemons & grapefruit + poppy seeds & sliced almonds

In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the citrus juice. Let stand without stirring until the gelatin is moistened, about 10 minutes.

Pour the 1.5 cups of coconut milk into a small saucepan. Add vanilla, maple, salt into it. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring consistently. Remove from the heat. Add the gelatin mixture and stir until completely dissolved, about 3 minutes. Cool until lukewarm, about 5 minutes. Pour the panna cotta mixture into the cooled tart shell. Place in the refrigerator until set, approximately 4 hours. Top with sliced citrus, poppy seeds & sliced almonds.

Store in the fridge – keeps well overnight and is EXCELLENT for breakfast the next morning :)

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Meyer Lemons for 2019

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Hello hello! Happy 2019!

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Here is the first dessert of the year – and I’m quite happy with it! C and I loved it; but then, we’re also fiercely fond of anything that is citrusy and tart, so it was an easy sell. Plus, cornmeal! Let’s not forget our joint obsession with that.

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I love this tart for winter – meyer lemons are at their peak and are SO delicious, and the naturally bright yellow is just perfect for a bright midwinter dessert!

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I did actually bake for NYE, but it was the ricotta cornmeal cake I’d made recently & my favorite cookies, and I didn’t want any repeat posts! Both were very well received :)

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C and I had a lovely weekend – we did the tart for dessert first, with ice cream, and then again for… uh, if you eat your first meal of the day at 3 after a giant hike, is it still breakfast?! Anyway – great day out in Marin on the coastal trails by Rodeo beach, followed by tart and eggs and kale and all the usual things!

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I hope your weekend was all kinds of delightful, and that your year is off to a great start!

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Meyer Lemon Tart with a Cornmeal Almond Crust

Tart and bright – this is citrus at its best! It makes a difference to use meyer lemons – they are naturally sweeter than regular lemons. This is for those who like their desserts tart! Gluten free and refined sugar free. Yield: 1 9″ tart. A Wait are Those Cookies original.

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For the crust:

1.5 c almond flour
1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 c cornmeal
heaping 1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
6 tbsp coconut oil, melted

In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, shredded coconut, cornmeal, sea salt, and baking soda. Add in vanilla, maple, and melted coconut oil, and stir until completely combined. The dough will look crumbly, but you’ll be able to press it together with your fingers.
Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease a 9″ tart pan (w/ removable bottom) with coconut oil. Press the crust into the plate and up the sides with a spoon or your fingers, creating a smooth edge (or not, your call!). Poke the bottom with a fork a few times, and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and let cool for a few minutes. Increase oven temp to 375.

Maple Lemon Curd*:

2 whole eggs
3 egg yolks
1/3 c lemon juice
zest of 4 lemons
pinch of sea salt
2 tbsp maple syrup
4 tbsp butter
1 tsp vanilla

*I made a batch and a half for a higher curd to crust ratio – feel free to do like I did. If you do, use 3 whole eggs & 4 yolks + another half of all other ingredients listed except maple (I like my curd to be tart!)

I used a double boiler for this lemon curd, which is a game changer. Highly recommended! Heat water in the bottom of the double boiler until it’s at a high simmer. In the top of the double boiler, whisk together eggs, egg yolks, lemon zest and juice, sea salt, and maple syrup. Add in the butter one tbsp at a time, whisking continuously, not adding the next tbsp until the first is completely melted. Whisk in vanilla. Cook, stirring constantly, until the lemon curd thickens and will coat the back of a spoon (or your whisk leaves tracks) – usually around 5 to 8 minutes. It’s a noticeable change when it happens, so just watch the cooking magic! Remove from heat, strain through a fine mesh strainer, and store in a glass container in the fridge until ready for use.

Pour the curd into the crust and smooth the top. Bake at 375 for 8-12 minutes, until the curd is barely set. Cool completely before slicing and serving – store in the fridge until serving and keep leftovers covered in the fridge.

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Cake for breakfast? Sign me up.

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Hello! December is progressing at a ridiculously fast clip, as it always seems to….

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I’ve been enjoying all the holiday things – spent yesterday at the Dickens Fair to see friends and fave human do some performing; and happened to come upon these hilarious dead rat gingerbread (clearly I need some new cookie cutters…)

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C and I loved this cake! I riffed on my last ricotta cake to see if I could get it to be more like a cheesecake – this one is definitely that. It reminds me most of cornbread crossed with cheesecake, which sounds weird but I swear it’s amazing. It’s light but dense at the same time, but in a way that isn’t heavy. As per usual it’s not very sweet – the chopped apples in the batter bring just the right amount of sweetness.

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Aside from the extra bowl required to beat the egg whites (which I find super fun – it’s my favorite bit of kitchen alchemy), the cake comes together super quickly and with a minimum of fuss. Arguably could be made in the morning for brunch, but it also keeps excellently in the fridge overnight and is almost better cold, in my opinion, making it a great candidate to be made the night before.

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It goes superbly with ice cream for dessert, but is equally amazing sliced in simple wedges for breakfast. Of course we at it alongside eggs & kale – it would be really perfect to feed a holiday morning crowd!

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I am so very tempted to make this again, and soon – it’s definitely a favorite of mine. Luckily, I’m out of ricotta at the moment, so I’ll settle for brunch with a friend. Happy holidays!! Hug your loved ones and bake them things, I promise they’ll be happy!

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Ricotta Polenta Cake with Apples and Pomegranate

I LOVE this cake. Only lightly sweet, it’s somewhere closer to being a cornbread crossed with a cheesecake. The apples bring just the right amount of natural sweetness – it’s perfect for breakfast. Yield: 1 9″ cake. Adapted from my last ricotta cake, here.

6 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/3 c maple syrup, divided
zest of 2 meyer lemons
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 eggs, separated
1.25 c almond flour
3/4 c fine polenta
scant 1/2 tsp sea salt
1.25 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
1 granny smith apple, diced
1/2 granny smith apple, thinly sliced, for garnish
1/3 cup slivered almonds, optional for garnish
a sprinkle of coconut sugar
thinly sliced apples & pomegranate arils for garnish
a bit of chopped crystalized ginger, for garnish

Preheat the oven to 325, and either use an 8″ springform pan OR do like I did and use a 9″ cake pan, well greased and lined with two strips of parchment paper so that you can lift the cake out onto a cooling rack easily.

Using a hand mixer (or a stand mixer) , beat butter, half the maple, lemon zest, and vanilla in a large bowl. Add in egg yolks and beat until combined, another minute-ish. In a smaller bowl, whisk together almond flour, polenta, and sea salt. Add the dry ingredients into the larger bowl, add ricotta, and stir to combine.

In a separate, non-reactive bowl, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form (preferably with your hand mixer or stand mixer so that your arm doesn’t fall off) – drizzle in the rest of the maple while mixing.

Fold the egg whites into the batter in two batches, then fold in chopped apples. Pour the batter into the cake pan, and top with sliced apples and almonds, if using. Sprinkle with a bit of coconut sugar. Bake for 45-50 minutes, until a tester inserted into the middle comes out clean (mine was done closer to 50 min). Let cool for at least 10 minutes, then lift out onto a cooling rack to cool completely, removing parchment from underneath if you used it. Let cool completely before serving; also delicious cold if you want to stick it in the fridge for an hour or two.

Garnish with pomegranate arils before serving! Excellent with a bit of vanilla ice cream (really, what isn’t) for dessert or eat it alongside eggs for breakfast. Keeps well for several days, covered in the fridge or stored in an airtight glass container.

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Strawberry Season!

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Happy Weekend!

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The strawberries are perfect over here right now – so, so perfect! I picked up a carton over the weekend and knew I needed to do something with them, besides just eat them over my sink.

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I love the idea of olive oil cakes – olive oil is one of my favorite things anyway, and putting it in cake just makes it that much better. Obviously all of my desserts trend not-so-sweet, and this one is no exception: the strawberries provide the necessary sweetness against the more mellow, lightly fruity cake.

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We decided that the cake itself is somewhat of a cornbread – shortbread hybrid (not so much in texture but in taste) – especially when eaten with ice cream and strawberries; we both go bonkers for cornmeal & polenta over here so it’s a win all around.

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Besides that, it’s a very easy cake that comes together in a snap and doesn’t require any overly unusual ingredients. We ate it for dessert and also (because it’s us!) for breakfast yesterday morning – no photos since it was a hurried morning, but never fear – it was eaten alongside the usual eggs, kale and coffee!

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Still loving the photos from last week’s hike to Twin Peaks – here is another of my favorites. This looks like it could be the Elysian Fields or something of that nature!

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Anyway – seize the moment of perfect strawberries, and put them on cake! Happy weekend!

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Olive Oil Polenta Cake with Strawberries

Fruity, very lightly sweet cake that is something of a cross between cornbread and a shortcake – we really noticed the comparison to shortcake with eaten with ice cream and strawberries, but it is also great for breakfast of course, with a little extra olive oil and strawberries. Gluten free, refined sugar free and dairy free. A Wait are Those Cookies original! Yield: 1 8″ cake.

1/2 c olive oil
1.5 c almond flour
1/2 c cornmeal
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 c maple
4 eggs
zest of one meyer lemon
3 tbsp meyer lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla
strawberries for serving

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease an 8″ cake pan – if not using a springform, cut large strips of parchment paper to go underneath the cake with their edges hanging over the pan edge to make for easy removal.

Whisk together flours, baking powder, baking soda and sea salt.

Using an electric mixer, beat eggs until pale yellow in color. Beat in olive oil, maple, lemon zest and juice, and vanilla. Add the flour mixture in batches, beating until just incorporated.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake until the top is golden brown and a tester inserted into the center comes out with crumbs attached, 35-40 minutes. Cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then cool on a wire rack completely for about an hour before serving.

I cut up strawberries a few hours before serving and tossed them with a drizzle of olive oil and meyer lemon juice – I let them sit until serving and they were DELICIOUS. Highly recommended.

Serve with strawberries and ice cream and maybe an extra drizzle of olive oil.

Cake keeps really well covered in foil on the counter overnight & is excellent for breakfast – I’d eat it within three days for maximal freshness.

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For the Horde!

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Brace yourselves for another Nerd Pie!

This one is…. FOR THE HORDE! Obviously.

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I thought the red/purple-y color of the filling seemed like an appropriate Horde color, so there you go – Nerd pies strike again!

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I have it on good authority that the leftovers didn’t even last a day, so I consider my mission accomplished. This pie is definitely a winner if you like tart things – there is barely any sweetener in here, since we very clearly like tart things around here. I love unadulterated rhubarb – it smells SO good when it’s baking!

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Pie for breakfast? …. Obviously, have you met us?!

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In other news, aside from pie…

Great hike/walk up to Twin Peaks with fave human and some beautiful wildflowers. Thankfully, this world never stops being beautiful – no matter what else is transpiring.

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Also, I made my mama some Mother’s Day cookies (because she is amazing and in Scotland as of today so it had to be something portable) and this one kind of looks like the Millennium Falcon…? No? Just me?

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Keeping it short because it’s (the end of!) Monday and I’m tired… and can’t quite believe we’re already halfway through May! What?!

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Happy baking!

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Rhubarb, Blackberry and Ginger Pie on a Whole Wheat Crust

Refined sugar free and whole wheat. This pie is for those who love all things tart but naturally sweet: the rhubarb is allowed to be its true self! Sugar need not apply. Sweetened very minimally with a little maple – feel free to eat with whipped cream, ice cream or just plain as you see fit. Yield: 1 9″ pie. Recipe is a riff on the many pies that have shown up on here, such as this one or this one.

For the pie crust:

2.25 c whole wheat pastry flour
3 tbsp coconut sugar
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
1/3 c unsalted butter
1/3 c vegetable shortening
5-6 tbsp ice water
For the filling:

4 c rhubarb, chopped*
2 c blackberries*
1/4 c maple syrup
1/4 c whole wheat flour
zest of 2 meyer lemon
juice of 1 meyer lemon (or regular)
1/4 c candied ginger
1/4 tsp salt

*I baked straight from frozen; fresh would also be fine

For finishing: 1-2 tbsp butter, 1 egg for egg wash

To make the crust: in a large bowl, whisk together pastry flour, coconut sugar, baking powder, and salt. Cut in shortening and butter either with your fingers or a pastry cutter until a coarse mixture forms and the butter chunks are the size of peas. Make a well in the center of the dough and add in the ice water one tablespoon at a time – mix as little as possible when incorporating the water to avoid overworking the dough. Once it will stick together, you’re good to go. Divide it into two even pieces, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 10 minutes and up to an hour.

While the dough is chilling, put together the filling. In a large bowl, toss together rhubarb, blackberries, maple syrup, whole wheat flour, lemon zest and juice, cinnamon and salt. Let sit for at least 10 minutes — easiest to do this while you roll out the pie dough.

Once the dough is chilled, roll it out between two pieces of parchment or on marble, whatever you have – I like parchment for easy removal. Aim for about 1/8″ thickness, and lay the bottom crust into a lightly greased pie dish. Shape it with your fingers, evening out the top as per your pie plate or design you want — this crust will make a double crusted pie, so keep that in mind. Toss in rhubarb filling goodness and dot with butter.

If you want to get fancy and get all Horde-pie nerdy…

Cut out templates (thick paper or thin cardboard work nicely) for the Horde crest. Have egg wash and coconut sugar handy (I use a beaten egg + 1 tbsp water). Use the templates to cut out the top crust shape, and brush everything with egg wash to make it stick. Sprinkle coconut sugar where contrast is desired.

Once finished, carefully lay top crust over the rhubarb filling. Bake at 450 for 10 minutes, then 350 for 35-40 until the filling is bubbling and the crust is golden brown. Remove from the oven when done and let sit to cool for at least an hour, preferably more so that the filling will set. Serve warm or at room temp, and store any leftovers overnight on the counter, loosely covered, or in the fridge for longer (assuming it lasts that long). Pie can be made a day in advance if needed and reheated briefly in a 375 oven to crisp the crust and warm the filling – 10/15 minutes. The pie filling will firm up if stored in the fridge overnight, making slicing easier.

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Nature’s ombré: blood oranges!

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Happy spring! I really can’t believe it’s almost April.

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Aside from my car blowing a tire on the bridge in the pouring rain (why is it that car trouble always comes in multiples?), things are pretty spring-like over here, especially today – the weather is cool, sunny and beautiful.

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We got in a great ridge hike yesterday, despite some really aggressive ridge top wind; the clouds were beautiful and we only got hit with a bit of light drizzle. The colors of everything were so gorgeous – not sure my photos do it justice!

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What a great weekend – quality time with fave human, hiking & healthy dessert! And pizza. Because, well, because pizza! Ha. Everything in moderation, including moderation.

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In other news, the skies have been beautiful lately.

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I have a very spring-y dessert for you today – our consensus was that this is a light, spring-like, mellow-in-a-good-way dessert – it certainly disappeared quickly over here!

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The panna cotta is very lightly citrusy, which plays nicely against the cornmeal & meyer lemon crust. Cornmeal is an easy sell with both of us, so no complaints there (except for some extra flossing). We ended up serving this with extra sliced citrus – both of us are really into tart things, but it’s also great on its own. I’d say that I like it with ice cream (because we know I love ice cream in general), but it’s not absolutely necessary, and could easily overwhelm the delicate panna cotta – in which case I’d say to skip it, just this once.

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This is a dessert that sounds complicated but comes together super quickly and requires minimal baking time. The only consideration is allowing enough time to let the gelatin set, but that’s just a small bit of planning ahead – I like to make this the night before and let it set overnight.

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Happy spring baking! Get on those blood oranges before they disappear!

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Citrus Panna Cotta Tart on a Cornmeal Lemon Coconut Crust

Gluten free and refined sugar free. Definitely could be done with coconut milk and dairy free yogurt for a df version! To me, this has the flavor essence of a creamsicle or a 50/50 bar, only lightyears better and not full of processed nastiness. Despite sounding complicated, this comes together quickly & easily, and can be made the night before. Yield: 1 9″ tart, serves several! A Wait are those Cookies original.

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For the crust:

1.5 c almond flour
1/4 c unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 c cornmeal
heaping 1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
6 tbsp coconut oil, melted
zest of 2 small meyer lemons (or 1 large)

In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, shredded coconut, cornmeal, sea salt, and baking soda. Add in vanilla, maple, melted coconut oil, and lemon zest, and stir until completely combined. The dough will look crumbly, but you’ll be able to press it together with your fingers.
Preheat the oven to 350, and lightly grease a pie plate with coconut oil. Press the crust into the plate and up the sides with a spoon or your fingers, creating a smooth edge (or not, your call!). Poke the bottom with a fork a few times, and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and let cool for a few minutes.

Panna Cotta:
1 package unflavored powdered gelatin
3/4 cups whole milk, divided
2 tsp vanilla
Scant 1/4 cup maple
zest of two oranges
zest of 1 meyer lemon
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt

In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over 1/4 cup of the milk. Let stand without stirring until the gelatin is moistened, about 10 minutes.

Pour the remaining 1/2 cup milk into a small saucepan. Add vanilla, maple & zest into the milk. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring consistently. Remove from the heat. Add the gelatin mixture and stir until completely dissolved, about 3 minutes. Strain into a large bowl to remove the citrus zest and cool until lukewarm, about 5 minutes. Whisk in the yogurt until well blended. Pour the panna cotta mixture into the cooled tart shell. Place in the refrigerator until set, approximately 4 hours or, better yet, overnight.

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