Monday, July 21, 2014

Almond Butter Pavlova with Honeyed Apricots

In some ways, I've lost the ease of Summer. I don't travel any more in the Summer than any other time of the year, not able to steal myself away for weeks at a time as was once possible. I don't sleep anymore than normal, less maybe, with the sun hanging high until late into the day. There aren't leisurely long walks in the park, because "Ohmygosh it's so hot out there and I must get back inside before the sun burns me to a crisp!"

I often miss those effortless days and never ending nights from a time when my schedule was based around the school year. But in at least one way, there is still an ease to the Summer . . . the food--the fresh fruits and vegetable that are so beautiful on their own that they don't need to be fussed with.

That's exactly what this recipe is: un-fussed with--That's exactly what this post is, really, as I grabbed no more than this one sub-par Instagram photo before bringing it to be devoured by the lovely people in my House Church--But the dish, just a simple pavlova (egg whites + sugar) with a bit of almond butter stirred in and surrounded by almond slivers, topped with a lightly sweetened whipped cream and these honeyed apricots (inspired by this recipe from Climbing Grier Mountain). Happy easy Summer livin', y'all!


Saturday, June 28, 2014

Gluten-Free Blueberry Tart {A Sabbath Dessert}


There's been some radio silence around here. I, to put it simply, have been very busy. I started a second job a couple of months ago--a job I'm so in love with, but definitely adds another level of complexity to my life. Most hours of my day are accounted for, which is making it harder and harder to take a sabbath--a day of rest.

It's started to ware on me a bit. I'm finding myself making mental To-Do lists when I need to be focusing on the friend who is across the table from me, sharing her heart. My prayer life has suffered, too, because my brain is quite full, and this is the main reason that I've needed to figure out a new Sabbath plan.

I spent some time awhile ago figuring out that to have a day of rest does not mean that I have to do absolutely nothing, rather things that are restorative to me specifically. This has always--and hopefully will always--include baking. Not the over-the-top-conquer-the-biggest-baking-project-ever baking, but baking that is relaxing and somewhat easy.

I've been dreaming up a blueberry tart ever since blueberries became in-season, and the arrival of (yet another) cook book in the mail, "Sinfully Easy Delicious Desserts," was what it took to make it happen.

This book is full of recipes that show you can make and present something beautiful, with out spending an entire day making in happen. The blueberry tart in the book is not the one that I made, but understanding that making a lovely tart didn't have to be an ordeal, and could instead be a way to spend a bit of my restful time, helped me to get it done.

Now, go ahead and rest . . . and maybe do some baking!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Raspberry Chocolate Chip Scones


I deeply cherish my day off every week. Tuesdays are my favorite day, but particular the Tuesdays that start with a small group I have with a few amazing women in my life. We meet, and discuss scripture, and drink coffee, and everyone but me eats delicious scones.

You see, we meet at a local Salt Lake coffee shop that has in-house-made muffins, cinnamon rolls, and scones--scones that I long after every other week.

And so I made my own scones, scones I am allowed to eat, and that are nearly as lovely as the women with whom I get to spend the mornings of my favorite day.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies (Gluten-Free)


I make a special stop every time I'm in the grocery store to the fancy chocolate aisle. I usually go for something dark chocolate and salty, but lately my trips to Whole Foods have had me fawning over the chocolate covered marshmallows. Marshmallows are not usually my cup of tea, but for some reason, I pull them off the shelf every time I'm there to read the box, only to be reminded once again that these are not gluten-free.

Sometimes life just isn't fair.

Fueled with the injustice of it all, I made homemade chocolate cookies, and homemade marshmallows, and covered them with some high-quality bittersweet chocolate. I will never try the boxed chocolate covered marshmallows, but I am one million percent certain that these are better. They're so good. Just make them. The end.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Flowing with Milk and Honey (and Blackberries), an Ice Cream Recipe



I know it's a bit early in the year to be breaking out our ice cream makers, but it's never too early for recipes that are inspired. You see, we're in the middle of the lenten season, the 40 days (+Sundays) from Ash Wednesday to Easter when we prepare for the celebration of the resurrection of Christ.

I like to read Exodus in this season, reflecting on the Israelites and their rescue from slavery from Egypt. They were chosen and promised to be led to "a land flowing with milk and honey." This line has been stuck in my head over the past few weeks of lent, and I wanted to write a recipe, an homage, to the Israelite's salvation from Egypt, and ours, many many years later, soon to be celebrated as Easter nears.

The best food I could think of containing milk and honey was a special ice cream, made specifically for a very dear friend who has been asking me to make her ice cream since the very beginning of her pregnancy. The addition of blackberries to this ice cream adds a bit of necessary tartness to the soft, sweet ice cream made of milk and honey.

"So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of the land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey . . ." Exodus 3:8

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Citrus Cream Cheese Pound Cake (Gluten-Free)


I wish I could say that this cake came out of some need for a bright and cheery glimmer in the dull gray of a long winter, but I live in Salt Lake, and somehow we remained protected in a sunshiny little bubble while the rest of the country was beaten down with storm after winter storm. I'll try not to throw too much salt in the wounds of those trapped inside for the past few months, but it has been completely gorgeous here, with warm days and the occasional spring rain shower. 

But don't be too mad at us yet, Non-Utah-Dwellers, we are all in solidarity in one thing: Winter (however spring-like ours may have been), still lacks in the produce department (You can only use so much kale, ya know?). So, wanting to embrace what was in season, along came this pound cake, all gorgeous and topped with all the citrus that this season has to offer. Also, I had never made pound cake, and thought this glazed citrus topping would be a perfect excuse to make one to go underneath it.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Banana Chocolate Chip Cake with Espresso Mousse (Gluten-Free)



There are two things I often have a wealth of at my house: expensive chocolate and overripe bananas. The chocolate because I can't resist picking some up anytime I go to a specialty store, and the bananas because I sometimes forget that I shoved one in my purse to eat while I'm out and about.

This cake pairs the two of these together beautifully, and is made even better with the addition of a chocolate-espresso mousse that I was right in assuming would work well with the flavors of this cake.

If you don't have the same excess problems as I do, you can always intentionally let a few bananas go bad, and make a special trip to the store for some fancy dark chocolate instead :)

About Me

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Salt Lake City, Utah
As a pastry chef by trade and by hobby, being diagnosed with Celiac Disease has not been easy. But through some experimental baking (both gluten-free and not) and a whole lot of faith, I'm living a full(er) life.