Turbinado-Soft-Caramels F

Soft Caramels

by Cassidy Stockton in Recipes

Caramels are, hands-down, my favorite candy. You can keep your chocolates, your peppermints, your fudge, just give me all of the caramels and I will make sure they are, ahem, disposed of properly. I do not make them from scratch, however, and often fork over a pretty penny for soft caramels. Luckily, Sarah House has come up with a pretty simple recipe for making luscious soft caramels. She’s assured me that it is not as daunting as it seems and I tend to trust her. I’ll be cooking up a batch of these this weekend to enjoy over the Christmas holiday, I hope you’ll join me. I plan to sprinkle some coarse sea salt over the top of these, because that’s how I roll (and roll I will if I eat all of these caramels).

Soft Caramels | Bob's Red Mill

Soft Caramels

Prep Time:  5 minutes | Rest Time:  60 minutes | Cook Time:  8 – 10 minutes

Yield: about 36 pieces

Step 1

Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper and spray with pan spray.

Step 2

Heat cream, vanilla extract, salt and 2 Tbsp butter in a small saucepan until butter has melted.  Remove from heat and set aside.

Step 3

In a large pan, heat Bob’s Red Mill Turbinado Sugar, honey and water over medium-high heat, stirring until all sugar granules have melted.  Continue to cook, without stirring, until the mixture reaches 310°F on a candy thermometer, about 3 – 4 minutes.

Step 4

Remove the sugar mixture from the heat and carefully add cream mixture.  Return to heat and cook until the mixture reaches 260°F on a candy thermometer, about 5 – 6 minutes.

Step 5

Remove from heat and mix in remaining 2 Tbsp butter.  Pour into prepared pan and let set, about 1 hour.  Cut into desired sizes and wrap individual pieces in parchment paper or plastic wrap.

 

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Cassidy Stockton Google: Cassidy Stockton
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Candied Chocolate Almonds F

Candied Chocolate Almonds

by Cassidy Stockton in Recipes

We’re all about the thoughtfully homemade gifts this year at Bob’s Red Mill, and for good reason. Homemade gifts feel instantly personal, are usually easier on the wallet, and (if edible) are something that can be enjoyed with others. It’s both a gift and an experience. Last year, I toasted and flavored almonds in many varieties for my friends and coworkers. I wrapped about a cup of almonds in pretty cellophane bags and that was that. I’m not sure a single bag made it home to be shared with others, but they were a big hit with the recipients.

I wish I’d had this recipe last year, because it is SO easy. Melt the chocolate, mix with nuts, add spices. DONE. I recommend making a few batches, as these will disappear quickly. If almonds don’t appeal, cashews will work well in this recipe, too. Pretty cellophane or small glass jars turn these into an instant gift, if you can stand to share these chocolate almonds with anyone.

Candied Chocolate Almonds

Chocolate Covered Almonds

Prep Time:  10 minutes | Rest Time:  5 minutes | Cook Time:  2 – 3 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

  • ½ cup Semisweet Chocolate Chips
  • 2 cups Whole Dry Roasted Almonds
  • 1 Tbsp Bob’s Red Mill Turbinado Sugar
  • ½ tsp Kosher Salt
  • 1 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
  • ½ tsp ground Cinnamon
  • ⅛ tsp Chili Powder (optional)

Step 1

Place chocolate chips in a large microwave safe bowl.  Melt in the microwave for 2 – 3 minutes, stopping to stir with a rubber spatula every 30 seconds.

Step 2

Add almonds and stir thoroughly to coat the nuts.  Add Bob’s Red Mill Turbinado Sugar and salt and stir well.

Step 3

Spread the almonds on a parchment lined sheet tray and let sit until the chocolate is just tacky, about 5 – 10 minutes.

Step 4

Return almonds to the bowl and add cocoa powder and spices; mix well.  Store in an airtight container.

 

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Cassidy Stockton Google: Cassidy Stockton
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Chocolate Chip Caramel Gooey Bars | Bob's Red Mill

Chocolate Chip Caramel Gooey Bars in a Jar

by Sarena Shasteen in Gluten Free, Recipes

I am a huge fan of giving homemade gifts for the holidays. It not only gives me the chance to share treats that I love, but also allows me the opportunity to personalize these gifts for whomever I’m giving them to. I like including a cute jar that can be used for other things with an easy to assemble recipe along with a platter to serve it on and a dish towel for a cute presentation. I try to come up with things I know work with the recipients decor or cooking personality. The recipe I’m sharing today is based on another family favorite around here. This is one of those recipes that I always get asked to bring to events and gatherings. I love how well it came together as a gift and it’s so easy to bake. The best part about these bars is that they are even better the second day. So, easy to make and they keep well, could you ask for more?

Chocolate Chip Caramel Gooey Bars | Bob's Red Mill

Now, about the bars…

Caramel, oatmeal, brown sugar and chocolate chips! Could you really go wrong? Not in this house! These Chocolate Chip Caramel Gooey Bars are layers of oatmeal chocolate chip cookie with a rich dense caramel center. These bars are perfect treats for holiday gatherings since they bake up quickly, slice beautifully and will stay fresh for days (not that they will stick around that long).

Chocolate Chip Caramel Gooey Bars | Bob's Red Mill

Chocolate Chip Caramel Gooey Bars

Large Jar Ingredients

Small Jar Ingredients

Extra Ingredient

  • 1-1/2 cups cold Dairy Free Butter (EarthBalance)

To assemble the jars:

  • 1 – 10 cup jar
  • 1 – 2 cup jar

Combine 2 cups flour with baking soda and salt. Place in the large jar. Next layer the oats, then the brown sugar and then add the chocolate chips to the top.

In a bowl, combine the caramel sauce and the remaining 1/2 cup flour. Pour mixture into the small jar.

Chocolate Chip Caramel Gooey Bars | Bob's Red Mill

To Bake Bars

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a bowl, combine flour mixture, oats, brown sugar chocolate chips.
  3. Cut in butter until crumbly. Set half aside for topping.
  4. Press the remaining crumb mixture into a greased 13 x 9 baking pan.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes.
  6. Drizzle caramel mixture over the top of the half baked layer. Spread mixture all over, but not to the edges.
  7. Sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture.
  8. Bake an additional 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
  9. Cool on a wire rack for 2 hours before cutting.

Sarena Shasteen: The Non Dairy QueenSarena Shasteen has been an avid health food and fitness enthusiast from an early age. She holds a degree in Culinary Arts from The Art Institute of Atlanta, a certification in Fitness Nutrition and is a certified Fitness Trainer from International Sport Science Association (ISSA). Becoming a Personal Trainer and Specialist in Fitness Nutrition has been a lifelong goal of hers. Sarena enjoys helping others reach their health goals by teaching them that health and fitness are not only achieved in the gym, but also through fun everyday activities. Now a food writer, recipe developer, personal chef,  Personal Trainer and Specialist in Fitness Nutrition, she enjoys sharing with others that healthy living can be fun and delicious. Keep up with her at The Non Dairy Queen and on Facebook and Twitter.

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Sarena Shasteen Google: Sarena Shasteen
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Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti Mix F

Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti Mix in a Jar (Low Carb)

by Carolyn Ketchum in Recipes

In this age of crazy consumerism, a handmade, homemade gift can set you apart from the store-bought crowd. Bonus points if your gift comes in cool, pretty and useful packaging. It may be ridiculously trendy to give things in Mason jars tied up with festive twine but that hardly detracts from the heartfelt nature of the gift. I love this trend and I am jumping on the bandwagon with a loud thud. Move over and make a little room for me, would you?

Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti Mix in a Jar | Bob's Red Mill

I love giving homemade baked goods during the holidays and I know they are always appreciated. But it can be tricky with the sort of gluten-free, sugar-free treats I like to make. In conventional goodies, sugar acts as something of a preservative, keeping them fresher for longer. Given the slightly more time-sensitive nature of some of my recipes, it can be better to give things as a mix and let the recipients have fun making them up on their own. Besides, then you can layer the ingredients prettily in a jar, tie them up with festive twine and feel like a homemade gift-giving rock star.

Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti Mix in a Jar | Bob's Red Mill

These chocolate hazelnut biscotti are a wonderful gift to give, either as a mix or fully baked. Made with Bob’s Red Mill hazelnut meal and whole dry roasted hazelnuts, they are naturally gluten-free and intensely chocolatey. They are healthy and wholesome but they don’t taste like it one little bit. Winning!

Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti Mix | Bob's Red Mill

All you have to do is grab a few quart-sized Mason jars, layer the ingredients, find a cute set of holiday printables for the labels and recipe cards and tie it all up with a pretty bow. I found that forming a cone with a large piece of paper was the easiest way to layer the ingredients with minimal mess. It also helped me pour the next ingredient in without disturbing the layer below it too much. And all your giftees need to do is add some oil and eggs and bake them up.

You may want to keep one of the mixes for yourself; these biscotti are that good. As long as you let them cool completely in the oven, they will crisp up nicely and are perfect for dunking in your morning coffee or afternoon tea. Enjoy and happy holidays!

Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti Mix | Bob's Red Mill

Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti Mix 

In a medium bowl, whisk together hazelnut meal, baking powder, xanthan gum and salt. Pour about half of the mixture into the bottom of a quart-sized mason jar. This works best if you use a piece of paper to create a cone through which to pour the mixture. Remove the cone and shake the jar to even the layer out.

Next layer the cocoa powder through the cone. Even it out by gently shaking. Layer the sweetener in the same fashion, then the remaining hazelnut flour mixture. Finally layer the chopped hazelnuts and chocolate chips.

Instructions for the recipe card:

Ingredients:

  • 1 jar Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti Mix
  • 6 tbsp melted butter or hazelnut oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg white

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325F and line a large baking sheet with parchment or a silicone liner. Transfer biscotti mix to a large bowl and whisk to combine. Add butter or oil, egg and egg white and stir until dough comes together.
  2. Divide dough in half and transfer to prepared baking sheet. Shape into two low, flat rectangles about 4 inches by 8 inches. Bake 28 minutes or until slightly puffed and just set to the touch. Remove from oven and let cool 20 minutes.
  3. Reduce oven temperature to 300F. Carefully cut into 1-inch slices and lay cut-side down on baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes and then gently flip slices over. Turn off oven and let biscotti sit inside until oven is cool.

Makes 20 to 24 biscotti

Carolyn Ketchum | All Day I Dream About FoodCarolyn Ketchum is the writer, photographer and almond flour wizard behind All Day I Dream About Food, a low carb and gluten-free food blog. Her mission is to prove to the world that special diets need not be boring or restrictive and that healthy dishes can be just as good, or better, than their sugar and gluten-filled counterparts. It’s astonishing what you can do with a bag of almond flour, a stick of butter, and a willingness to experiment. Follow her on FacebookTwitterGoogle Plus and Pinterest for inspiring ideas for the low carb, gluten free lifestyle.

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Carolyn Ketchum Google: Carolyn Ketchum
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brownief

Chocolate Mint Brownies

by Erin Clarke in Recipes

If an Andes chocolate mint and a decadent fudge bar eloped to the North Pole and had a beautiful baby brownie, and if that brownie went on to be crowned homecoming queen, graduate from Harvard, and win the Nobel Peace Prize, it would be these Chocolate Mint Brownies.

Chocolate Mint Brownies | Bob's Red Mill

I’m not one to rush to superlatives or swoon at the concept of a soul mate, but these mint brownies are THE ONE. A lifetime fan of the chocolate-mint flavor dream team, as well as a self-proclaimed brownie aficionado, I can say with confidence that no other chocolate mint dessert compares to these mint brownies. They are transcendent.

The brownie layer is deep, dark, and decadent, a chocolate-lover’s paradise. On its own, it nearly risks being too rich, but the fluffy, fresh mint layer majestically lightens and balances it. The mint layer, in turn, is balanced by a thin lid of unsweetened chocolate. I love sinking my fork into the shiny chocolate top, watching it crackle over the York Peppermint Pattie mint filling below, then forge into the fudgy brownie base.

Chocolate Mint Brownies | Bob's Red Mill

The origin of this recipe is my friend Elizabeth, who years ago slide an innocent-looking pan of brownies (if there can be such a thing) my direction and asked if I’d like to try, “the best mint brownies ever.”  They were so incredible, I nearly seized the pan and made a run for it, but a slug of milk returned me to my senses. I asked for the recipe instead. Elizabeth obliged.

Today’s recipe is a lightly adapted version of Elizabeth’s. I modified the brownies to be thicker and fuller, as well as to fit into an 8×8-inch vs. 9×13-inch pan. The brownie thickness is simply because that’s how I believe a brown should be. The smaller pan is an act of self-preservation—once I begin work on these brownies, self-control becomes a mere hypothesis, so the smaller pan is prudent. Trust me.

To keep things from completely rolling off the edge of reasonable brownie behavior, I also baked these mint brownies with Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Pastry Flour. It’s completely undetectable, adds fiber, and allows you to feel a bit more confident about that extra slice you just snuck. I plan to use it in many of my baked goods this holiday, and I know my family won’t suspect a thing!

Chocolate Mint Brownies | Bob's Red Mill

To celebrate the start of the holiday baking season, Bob’s Red Mill for giving away a prize pack filled with high-quality baking essentials. One lucky winner will receive:

To enter the giveaway: Visit The Law Student’s Wife and scroll to the bottom of the post. You’ll find full entry details, as well as multiple ways to win!

Chocolate Mint Brownies

Yield: 1 8×8-inch pan

Ingredients

For the Brownie Layer

For the mint layer:

  • 3 tablespoons Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 1 -1/2 cups Powdered Sugar
  • 1 -1/2 tablespoons Milk
  • 3/4 teaspoon pure Peppermint Extract
  • 2 drops Green Food Coloring

For the topping:

  • 1 -1/2 (1-ounce) squares Unsweetened Chocolate
  • 1 -1/2 tablespoons Unsalted Butter

Directions

  1. Place rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8×8-inch pan and set aside.
  2. Prepare the brownie layer: In a heat-proof bowl set atop a pan of simmering water so that the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water’s surface, melt the 12 tablespoons butter and 3 ounces chocolate together. Stir frequently and watch carefully so the chocolate doesn’t burn. When the chocolate has nearly melted, remove from heat and stir until smooth. Set aside and let cool completely.
  3. Once the chocolate has cooled, add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Add the vanilla extract and sugar, beating thoroughly. Add the whole wheat pastry flour and all purpose flour, then beat until blended.  Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan and bake for 20-25 minutes, until the middle appears set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool completely.
  4. Prepare the mint layer: In a medium bowl, beat the 3 tablespoons of softened butter and powdered sugar together. Add the milk and vanilla, beating until smooth, then beat in the food coloring.  Spread over the cooled brownie base and refrigerate until firm.
  5. For the topping: Melt the 1 1/2 ounces chocolate and 1 1/2 tablespoons butter together, stirring until smooth. Drizzle over the chilled mint layer, then spread with spatula, gently covering surface with a very layer. Place in the refrigerator to set, then cut into squares. The brownies will cut more easily (and are delicious) when chilled. Enjoy with a large glass of milk.

Store leftover brownies in an airtight container in the refrigerator or wrap tightly and freeze for up to two months.

Erin ClarkeWife to a hungry law student, I’m on a mission to cook everything that’s tasty, mostly healthy, and budget friendly—all while Mr. Right is at the library. On my blog, The Law Student’s Wife, I share my recipes for lightened-up comfort foods, healthier baked treats, and seasonal eating. I’m a passionate cook, an awkward dancer, and with enough cheese, chocolate, and my cast-iron skillet, I could take on the world. Keep up with me on Facebook and Twitter

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Erin Clarke Google: Erin Clarke
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Triple Chip Oatmeal Cookie Mix-4

Triple Chip Oatmeal Cookie Mix in a Jar

by Erin Clarke in Gluten Free, Recipes

Holiday shopping stresses me. I want my gifts to be more thoughtful than a gift card, but guaranteed to please the recipient.  After years of my sister privately asking me for gift receipts, I have finally found the holiday gift that’s a guaranteed hit: Homemade Triple Chip Oatmeal Cookie Mix in a Jar.

Triple Chip Oatmeal Cookie Mix | Bob's Red Mill

A few things I love about Homemade Cookie Mix in a Jar for holiday giving:

  • It’s the right size
  • It’s the right color
  • It’s budget friendly, but still thoughtful
  • It can be easily customized to fit taste preferences and dietary needs

I originally set out to make regular (still fabulous) homemade oatmeal chocolate chip cookie mix, but then I became distracted by other tasty options winking at me in the pantry. The holidays are no time to be skimpy, so I loaded this homemade cookie mix with a combination of peanut butter, semi-sweet, and white chocolate chips.

Triple Chip Oatmeal Cookie Mix in a Jar | Bob's Red Mill

You could also swap in chopped nuts, dried fruits, and even toasted coconut—just keep the total amount of mix-ins to 1 cup, or you’ll need a second jar.

This Homemade Triple Chip Cookie Mix can also be made completely gluten free. If dietary restrictions are a concern, use Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour and Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Rolled Oats. As someone who is a bit hesitant to experiment with gluten free baking, these products have been a lifesaver. I simply swapped the gluten free flour for the all purpose flour (same for the oats) in my favorite oatmeal cookie recipe, and the results where outstanding.

Flour and Oats

If dietary restrictions are not a concern, you can use the same amount of regular all-purpose flour (or even white whole wheat flour) and oats in the baking mix.

Once the ingredients are layered, tie the jar up as you please, then attach this handy recipe to the front. (Download a higher resolution version here.)

Printable

Now that we have the holiday shopping under control, only one serious cookie mix question remains: exactly how many minutes we after the cookie mix is opened before hinting at “testing” it out? I think 10 seems socially acceptable, don’t you?

Triple Chip Oatmeal Cookie Mix in  Jar | Bob's Red Mill

Triple Chip Oatmeal Cookie Mix in a Jar

Yield: about 30 cookies

For making the mix:

For baking the cookies:

  • Jar of Cookie Mix
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted Butter
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure Vanilla Extract

To make the mix: Combine the flour (gluten free mix or all-purpose) baking powder, baking soda, and salt in small bowl. Place the flour mixture in 1-quart jar. Layer the brown sugar, granulated sugar, chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, and oats in the order listed, pressing firmly after each layer. Seal with lid and decorate with ribbon as desired. Attach recipe printable.

To bake the cookies: Place rack in the center of your oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter, egg, and vanilla until well blended. Add the cookie mix and mix well, breaking up any clumps.

Drop the dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheets, leaving about 1 1/2 inches between each ball of dough. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until light golden brown, rotating the pan’s positions halfway through. Remove from the oven, and let cool on a wire rack.

Store leftover cookies in an airtight container.

Erin ClarkeWife to a hungry law student, I’m on a mission to cook everything that’s tasty, mostly healthy, and budget friendly—all while Mr. Right is at the library. On my blog, The Law Student’s Wife, I share my recipes for lightened-up comfort foods, healthier baked treats, and seasonal eating. I’m a passionate cook, an awkward dancer, and with enough cheese, chocolate, and my cast-iron skillet, I could take on the world. Keep up with me on Facebook and Twitter

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Erin Clarke Google: Erin Clarke
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quinoa bites F

3 Healthy Road Trip Snacks

by Claire Gallam in Recipes

The holiday season is upon us, and to many, that means lots of baking, holiday parties, endless shopping and long road trips to see family and friends. Even though it’s just as easy to pull into a McDonald’s or a Burger King when the kids start demanding food, those meals filled with fat, empty calories and sugar will only leave them hungry again in no time.

My suggestion? Skip the drive through and pack your car full with one of these healthy, fiber and protein-packed snacks for seamlessly easy road snacking. Now, I can’t promise your kids will behave, but I can promise they’ll eat these up without any complaining.

Preventing your son from licking his sister’s face or your daughter from hogging the iPad is on you, I’m just packing the snacks.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins | Bob's Red Mill

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

Yields about 8 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 cups Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill All Purpose Flour
  • ½ cup Bob’s Red Mill Oat Flour
  • 1 cup White Sugar
  • 2/3 cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of Baking Powder
  • 2 teaspoons of Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 teaspoons of Vanilla Extract
  • 1-1/3 cup of Pumpkin Puree
  • 1/3 cup of Canola Oil
  • 1 cup of Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • 1/4 cup of chopped Walnuts

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line muffin tin with liners or spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, sift flour, sugar, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice and salt together. Form a well in the middle. Add eggs, vanilla, pumpkin and oil.
  3. Using a wooden spoon, stir until fully mixed. Add chocolate chips and nuts, stir until incorporated.
  4. Put 2 tablespoons of batter into each cup (or until 3/4 the way full). Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until browned.

Mexican Quinoa Bites | Bob's Red Mill

Mexican Quinoa Bites

Yields about 14 mini bites.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill Quinoa (we love tricolor)
  • 1 large Egg
  • 1/2 cup shredded Carrot
  • 1 stalk Leeks, chopped
  • 1 clove Garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 Jalapeño Pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons diced Tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon chopped Green Chiles
  • 2 tablespoons chopped Cilantro
  • 1/3 cup shredded Colby Jack Cheese
  • 1/2 tablespoon Mexican Seasoning
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Plus Sour Cream (or Greek Yogurt) and Avocado for garnish

Directions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a mini muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a bowl, mix the quinoa, egg, carrot, leeks, garlic, jalapeño, diced tomatoes, green chiles cilantro and cheese. Mix in the seasoning and salt and pepper.
  3. Fill each muffin tin all the way full with quinoa mix. Bake for about 16 – 20 minutes, or until crispy on the outside.

Fluffy Banana Bread | Bob's Red Mill
Easy Frosted Banana Bread

Serves about 14 – 16.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup White Sugar
  • ¼ cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 large Eggs
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened Applesauce
  • 2-½ tablespoons unsalted Butter
  • 3-½ medium Bananas, smashed
  • ½ cup Heavy Cream
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla
  • 2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour
  • ½ cup Almond Meal
  • ½ teaspoon Xanthan Gum
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 cup chopped Walnuts
  • ½ cup Cream Cheese Frosting
  • Chocolate Chips for garnish

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a large 9 x 3 x 3 loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat the applesauce, butter, eggs and sugar, until creamed. Mix in the banana, cream and vanilla, stir to combine.
  3. In another bowl, whisk the flour, almond meal, xantham gum and baking soda together.
  4. Make a well in the center of the butter ingredients and add the flour mixture, fold to combine. Stir in the chopped nuts.
  5. Pour the mixture into the loaf pan.
  6. Bake for about 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool completely.
  7. Once cooled, frost with cream cheese. Top with chocolate chips.

Claire GallamClaire is a cookbook author, food writer and recipe creator, soon-to-be culinary student
and avid world traveler. She is recently married to a social media guru who loves *almost* everything she conjures up. She writes full-time for the Food section of SheKnowsFabulousFoods.com and is a contributing writer for the Travel section of SheKnows. You can also follow her daily musings and find delicious healthy recipes on her food blog, The Realistic Nutritionist. Follow Claire on Twitter and Facebook to keep up to date with her newest creations. 

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Claire Gallam Google: Claire Gallam
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Maple Walnut Creme Brulee F

Surviving the Holidays with Dietary Restrictions + Maple Walnut Creme Brulee

by Carolyn Ketchum in Gluten Free, Health

The key to surviving the holidays on any sort of restricted diet comes down to two simple words: be prepared. As with most holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas center heavily around food and plenty of it. And so much of it is laden with sugar, gluten and all the other things you work so hard to avoid. It’s everywhere you turn, from the office cookie platter to the festive parties to the big family feast. A veritable minefield of temptation from the end of November to January 1st.

How are you going to handle that? You could go into hibernation in mid-November, avoiding all friends and family and any associated festivities, only to emerge in early January. But I don’t recommend it. Bears are pretty grumpy after their long winter’s sleep and you would be too, having missed all the fun.

Maple Walnut Creme Brulee low carb

But if you follow the mantra of being prepared, you can not only survive the holidays but enjoy them too. All while sticking to your healthy, restricted diet and not missing out on the festivities OR the great food. Now, the words “be prepared” might be quite simple, but the actual execution is less so. You have to be willing to roll up your sleeves and do a good bit of the work ahead of time. You have to be willing to stock up your freezer and pantry with foods that fit your dietary needs. And you have to be willing to stick to your guns when well-meaning friends and family urge you to “just try a little bit” of something you know you shouldn’t eat.

First steps first. Find recipes that fit your diet, purchase the ingredients and test them out. No matter how restrictive your diet, I guarantee that a quick internet search will bring up many wonderful recipes that fit the bill. Dietary restrictions are so common these days and so many people are creating great recipes and publishing them on the world wide web, so you are bound to find something. There are even many alternative recipes for traditional foods like stuffing, cake and pie. You really don’t need to abstain from these things; you just need to be prepared to make them yourself.

Maple Walnut Creme Brulee low carb

Find a recipe (or two, or three) you like? Great! Make a double batch and sock some away in your freezer for emergencies. The more you can do this, the better prepared you will be and the easier the holidays will be. If it’s something that needs to come out of the oven right before serving, do as much advanced prep work as possible. For example, many alternatives to Thanksgiving stuffing require you to make your own non-wheat-based bread, so that extra step can be time consuming. Making the bread in advance and freezing it until you need it means more free time on the actual day.

Have some quick and easy snacks at the ready at all times. We are all more likely to give into temptation when we are ravenous, so head that hunger off at the pass. Whatever snacks fit your dietary needs, keep some in your car or in your purse so that you are never caught empty-handed when hunger strikes. And eat a little handful before heading to parties and get-togethers so you don’t gravitate straight to the food table upon arrival.

Maple Walnut Creme Brulee low carb

 

Be prepared to stand your ground with well-meaning friends and family. This is a tough one, even for some of us battle-hardened veterans. I find it particularly difficult when I am a guest in someone else’s home and didn’t prepare the food myself. But even close loved ones will often say “but just a taste can’t hurt, right?” Well, sometimes that little taste can actually hurt. Don’t be afraid to politely decline; it’s not rude when your health is at stake. And if you are worried there won’t be anything you can eat at an event, bring some of your own. Bring enough to share and consider it a hostess gift.

Treat yourself right. You don’t need to go through the holidays denying yourself any and all desserts and goodies. I find it much easier to stick to my low carb diet if I can indulge in some low carb sweets and satisfy that craving. But again, you need to be prepared to make your own. Good recipes can rival even their conventional counterparts (I pride myself that some of mine fit this description) and you won’t miss the old stand-bys. And these can make the perfect hostess gift for holiday parties too!

So, ready to face the holidays in style?

Maple Walnut Creme Brulee low carb

Maple Walnut Creme Brulee

Creme Brulee:

  • 2 cups Heavy Cream
  • 4 large Egg Yolks
  • 6 Tbsp Swerve Sweetener or other erythritol-based sweetener, divided
  • 1 ½ tsp Maple Extract

Candied Walnuts:

For the creme brulee, preheat oven to 300F.

In a medium saucepan, warm cream over medium heat until steam just rises from the surface. Do not allow to simmer. Remove from heat.

In a medium bowl, beat egg yolks with ¼ cup sweetener until thickened and pale yellow. Add hot cream very slowly, stirring continuously. Stir in maple extract.

Divide custard between 6 small ramekins or a singe 1-quart ceramic or glass baking dish. Set into a larger baking dish and pour hot water to within 1 inch from the top of the ramekins.

Transfer to oven and bake 40 to 45 minutes or until custard is just set but still slightly wobbly in the center. Remove and let cool, then wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

For the candied walnuts, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine sweetener and water, stirring occasionally. Bring to a boil and then cook until mixture darkens, about 7 minutes. Stir in Walnut Baker’s Pieces and salt, tossing to coat walnut pieces well.

Spread out onto prepared baking sheet and let cool and harden.

Just before serving brulee, divide remaining 2 tbsp sweetener over tops of custards. Heat with a kitchen torch until topping bubbles and browns. Let sit for a few moments to cool and harden. You can also place ramekins a few inches under a preheated broiler, watching carefully and turning cups to ensure even browning.

Divide candied walnut pieces over the tops of each brulee and serve.

Carolyn Ketchum | All Day I Dream About FoodCarolyn Ketchum is the writer, photographer and almond flour wizard behind All Day I Dream About Food, a low carb and gluten-free food blog. Her mission is to prove to the world that special diets need not be boring or restrictive and that healthy dishes can be just as good, or better, than their sugar and gluten-filled counterparts. It’s astonishing what you can do with a bag of almond flour, a stick of butter, and a willingness to experiment. Follow her on FacebookTwitterGoogle Plus and Pinterest for inspiring ideas for the low carb, gluten free lifestyle.

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Carolyn Ketchum Google: Carolyn Ketchum
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10 Stellar Meatless Dishes for the Fourth of July | Bob's Red Mill

10 Stellar Meatless Dishes for the Fourth of July

by Cassidy Stockton in Featured Articles, Gluten Free, Meatless Mondays, Recipes

It’s Monday again, which means it’s Meatless Monday around here. At least, for many of us, it’s a short week! In honor of the upcoming holiday, I’ve gathered together 10 of our favorite meatless dishes for the Fourth of July. Each of these will satisfy carnivores and vegetarians alike and make it easy to please everyone no matter what you’re doing on Friday. 10 Stellar Meatless Dishes for the Fourth of July | Bob's Red Mill

10 Stellar Meatless Dishes for the Fourth of July | Bob's Red Mill

10 Stellar Meatless Dishes for the Fourth of July | Bob's Red Mill

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Cassidy Stockton Google: Cassidy Stockton
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Salad Header

5 Whole Grain Dishes to Step Up Your Potluck Game

by Cassidy Stockton in Featured Articles

Memorial Day seems to be the official opening day of barbecue and picnic season. What’s better than bringing together those you love over some delicious food? And what’s more fun than serving something that shows off your culinary chops? Sure, potato salad and pasta salad are perennial favorites and not overly difficult to put together. Wouldn’t it be more satisfying to bring a dish that isn’t filled with empty carbs and mayonnaise that everyone raves about? Health benefits aside, you know you will likely be the only person who brought something remarkable and different. Here are a few whole grain swaps you can make to step up your potluck game.

1. Instead of potato salad, bring Warm Kamut® Berry Salad with Bacon, Brussels Sprouts and Gorgonzola. Sure, this salad is a little time-consuming to make, but so is potato salad (unless you’re opting for a prepared version). Gorgonzola and bacon bring their A-game in this dish, while whole grain kamut berries and Brussels sprouts team up for a well-rounded dish that everyone will enjoy. If you can’t keep it hot, don’t worry, warm will be lovely and you won’t have to worry about any mayonnaise turning. If you can’t find kamut berries, wheat berries and farro will both make a comparable replacement.Warm Kamut Berry Salad with Bacon Brussels Sprouts and Gorgonzola

2. Swap a antipasto salad for Vegetable Bounty Quinoa Salad with Asian Vinaigrette. Far more nutritious than pasta, quinoa packs a nutritional punch and the flavors in this salad are warm and bright, perfect for pairing for a spring gathering.

Vegetable Bounty Sm

3.  Trade a pasta salad dressed with mayonnaise for this Curried Carrot and Sorghum Salad. The creamy curry dressing is both gluten free and vegan, making it perfect for any gathering and will quickly put mayo out of mind.

Curried Carrots and Sorghum Salad

4. Sure, a green salad is a great way to go, but wouldn’t it be more fun to bring Tabbouleh? Filled with fresh tomatoes and seasoned with mint and parsley, Tabbouleh comes together quickly and delivers a light, fresh flavor perfect to pair with grilled chicken or fish.

Tabbouleh

5. Keep it fresh and light with this Millet Spring Roll Salad. Who cares what you swap for this one? The bright flavors of this dish will counterbalance other, heavier fare and you’ll be able to school people on what millet is and impress them with your culinary prowess. Who has the time to make real spring rolls when you can turn them into a delicious salad?

Millet Spring Roll Salad

 

 

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Cassidy Stockton Google: Cassidy Stockton
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