I tested this Maple Bacon Cupcake recipe from the Cupcake Crew for Oprah.com. When I test recipes for O Magazine they have me take pictures and send them in as well as the tested recipes. This way they can see what the recipe looks like and start thinking about the layout, photos and food styling. They liked my shot so much they used it online with the recipe! So, here it is, my first photo credit, I was surprised and proud to say the least.
Gluten-Free Yogurt Banana Pancakes
1/2 cup white rice flour
1/2 cup teff flour
2 tbsp. ground flaxseed meal
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup non-fat yogurt (not Greek yogurt)
1/4 cup low-fat milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 large very ripe bananas, mashed
Butter, for the griddle
Pre-heat griddle to medium-high heat, whisk your dry ingredients together in a medium sized bowl and whisk your wet ingredients together in a small bowl. Add wet ingredients to the dry and mix until just combined, don’t over mix. Pour ¼ cup full of the batter and cook until batter is bubbling in the middle and the underside golden brown about 2-3 minutes, flip and cook another 2 minutes until golden brown. Serve on their own or drizzle with maple syrup.
Makes 16 pancakes
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! Make it a sweet one.
My grandma Dorothea was a very passionate woman, she loved food and cooking, books and knowledge, pretty clothes and perfume, but most of all she loved her family.
Dorothea was an intelligent, well read, and generous lady. Her generosity came in many forms, but the standout was that she always thought of others. If there was a chance someone, anyone was going to come over; a visit from my sister and me, a friend, a handyman coming to fix something, she was going to bake, most likely Mandelbrot or chocolate chip cookies. One of the two was always fresh and always offered. Mandelbrot was something that she could still bake even when she was 89 and blind. It is similar to biscotti in its twice-baked method, but worlds away in taste and texture, at least Grandma’s was. Mandelbrot means “almond bread” in German, but she always made hers with pecans and chocolate chips, not almonds and in my research I found this is typical for many recipes (many using walnuts). To me these cookies are tender, crumbly, not too sweet, perfect with coffee or tea and very easy to make.
Dorothea still cooked when she was blind. She started to lose her sight in her 70’s to macular degeneration, she couldn’t drive but she could cook and bake. She fought with her sight, and she refused to stop doing the things she loved.
She loved to cook, she loved to impress us with her strong will and determination to do and see things. Needless to say we were impressed, she was a woman who to her dying day was doing her best to live. She was, until dementia set in her last year of life, totally up with the news, current events, new books (books on tape), she had a cell phone and still loved stylish clothes, her passions for things always amazed us.
I loved to talk about food with my grandma; She was my first insight into the world of cooking. She would just whip things up and I was always aware that her and her cooking “had a thing going on” a great relationship. She respected the cooking process and in turn the process always reflected her passion and attention, in turn her food sang. She cooked like she could still see, using every ounce in her being to do things, to cook things.
Up until the last few months of her life I would call her whenever I made a brisket. Six years ago I was working as a private chef for a family and making my first brisket, and I realized I didn’t know what I was doing and called Grandma. “Grandma how do you make brisket?” she gave me her procedure, it was as if she was cooking it in her head as she told me. The brisket turned out great and eventually through many tests I made the recipe my own flavor-wise, but always kept her genius method. Every time I made it I would call her and ask her how she made her brisket, just as a ritual. I loved feeling her love for food and hearing all about it. I miss talking to her about food and for that matter life in general. It’s been nine months since she passed and I think of her everyday. But as long as I am cooking she is with me.
Mandelbrodt with Chocolate Chips
3 cups AP flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/ 2 tsp. salt
1 cup plus 1 tbsp. oil
1 cup sugar plus 1 tbsp. divided
1 cup finely chopped nuts (Grandma always used pecans)
4 ounces chocolate chips
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
Preheat oven to 375 F. Grease baking sheet. In a medium sized bowl mix flour,
baking powder and salt. In an other medium sized bowl beat oil, 1 cup sugar
and eggs, then gradually add flour mixture. Fold in nuts and chocolate chips then form dough into a 10 1/2″x 4″ loaf.
Mix remaining sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle over top,
bake 20 minutes. Cut loaf in half widthwise then in 2 inch slices
turn cut side down and bake until golden about 15 minutes.
This Saturday we rode our bikes to Red Hook, not only was it the nicest weather here in many weeks, we were on our way to pick out cake at BakedNYC. I kept saying that Hamlet was going to do all the tasting (me not eating wheat and all), he had no problem with this “burden”. I didn’t know until I sat in front of the cupcakes, but I was going to eat cake too. Well I survived a day of wheat, today woke up a little tired and with a sore throat but my day of wheat eating has come and gone and I don’t need to push it any longer, I have been down that road before. So on to the cake!
Here we have our take home cupcakes that we tasted, we are not having cupcakes but two round (non-tiered) cakes. We picked two flavors, what do you think we picked? Here is what we tasted. The slice on the upper right is called “bananas” its banana cake with chocolate peanut butter mousse surrounded by a layer of chocolate ganache. Top left: red velvet cake with cinnamon buttercream, top right: salted caramel chocolate butter cream with chocolate cake, middle left: is birthday cake vanilla butter cream and vanilla cake, middle right: coconut cream with citrus vanilla cake, bottom left: vanilla cake with chocolate frosting, bottom right: chocolate birthday cake with vanilla frosting
So which do you think we chose?
I shall explain. Hamlet’s birthday (my fiancé) is a few days before Christmas. Instead of a cake this last year he wanted a tart, so I told him I would make him a pear almond tart, then I got sick on his birthday and one thing led to another and the tart was long forgotten about. About a week ago, in his sweet demeanor he said “so I would really like my tart.” This is one thing I love about him, he says what he wants and there is no confusion. And he was right, the man deserved his birthday cake, I mean tart. So a slow work week led to me walking around town a lot. A walk to Atlantic Avenue led me through the Thursday Borough Hall Farmers Market which led me to the berries for this tart. The pastry cream I made was smooth and not too sweet. The crust, almond meal, some gluten-free flours and lots of butter! And success, Hamlet has never been happier with a dessert, he loves my gluten-free desserts, I wonder why? Yes, they are as tasty as desserts made with regular flour but he seems to like them better, maybe he likes that I can enjoy them with him. Regardless, he said I should make another one immediately because this one won’t last long. I wonder if it will last the weekend?
Happy Fourth of July!