Rhubarb Upside Down Cake

Happy spring! I received a gift of rhubarb from a coworker last week, and I had been saving this rhubarb upside down cake recipe from Cooking Light, so I decided to modify the recipe to be gluten-free and dairy free. It turned out delicious!

Rhubarb Upside Down Cake

Ingredients:

Topping:

1 lb rhubarb stalks, trimmed and cut to 4 inches
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp cornstarch
1/4 cup Earth Balance (or other non-dairy butter)
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp salt

Cake

7.25 ounces gluten-free all-purpose flour
2 tsp Pamela’s baking binder (this is an alternative to xanthan or guar gum, but you could use those instead too)
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup mayo (we use the brand Just Mayo, which is egg free)
2 Tbsp Earth Balance, softened (or other non-dairy butter)
3 eggs
1/2 – 1 tsp lemon juice (or 1 tsp orange zest)
1 tsp or less vanilla extract
2/3 cup vegan sour cream (we used Tofutti)

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a 9-inch cake pan by coating with canola oil or cooking spray. Combine rhubarb, 1/2 cup sugar, and cornstarch in a bowl, toss or mix to coat and set aside.

Combine 1/4 cup Earth Balance, brown sugar, thyme, 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/2 tsp cardamom, and 1/4 tsp salt in a small saucepan and cook over medium, stirring, until butter is melted. Pour mixture into prepared pan evenly.

Mix together flour, binder, baking powder, 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/2 tsp cardamom, and 1/2 tsp salt and set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, add 3/4 cup sugar, mayo, and 2 Tbsp Earth Balance. Using a paddle attachment, beat on medium speed until well incorporated and smooth (about 3-4 min). Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition, then beat in lemon juice (or zest) and vanilla extract until just combined.

Add flour mixture and sour cream to the bowl of the mixer, alternating between, starting and ending with the flour. Beat until just combined after each addition.

Arrange rhubarb pieces in a single layer on the bottom of the pan. This may be more difficult than it first seems, but feel free to cut the rhubarb to a shorter size to make the pieces fit. If you have extra rhubarb, chop it into smaller pieces, mix with a bit more chopped thyme, and save as a topping for the cake.

Pour batter on top of rhubarb, smooth out, and then drop the pan gently a couple times on the counter to remove air bubbles. Bake for 55 minutes to an hour, until a toothpick comes out clean (beware the bubbling over! Place a sheet pan on a lower rack to catch any spills while baking).

Cool pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Run a knife around the pan edge to loosen cake, then place a serving plate on top of the pan and flip over. Let stand until the cake releases from the pan.

Serve cake with non-dairy yogurt and any extra rhubarb coated in sugar.

Rhubarb Upside Down Cake

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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip BreadThis recipes comes from the Chequamegon Co-op Cookbook, but I’ve modified it to be a bread recipe (as opposed to a muffin recipe), gluten-free, and dairy-free.  It’s a hearty, delicious bread that will give you a dose of complete protein (thanks buckwheat!) and sweetness.

Ingredients:
1 2/3 cup buckwheat flour
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1 1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp nutmeg
3/4 tsp salt
heaping 1/2 cup chocolate chips (or more)
heaping 1/4 cup toffee bits (optional–I don’t use)
1/2 c chopped walnuts or pecans (optional–I don’t use)
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 c melted non-dairy butter
2 eggs
1 cup (half a 15 oz can) of solid pack pumpkin
1/3 cup water

Glaze:
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 tbsp rice milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together dry ingredients, stir in chocolate chips, toffee bits, and nuts (if using).  In a separate bowl, mix together vanilla, melted butter, eggs, pumpkin, and water. Make a well in dry ingredients and fill it with liquid ingredients and mix. Pour into a greased bread pan and bake 40-50 minutes.  Start checking the doneness around 40 minutes by sticking a knife in the middle of the loaf to see if it comes out clean.  If not, keep baking until it does.  If the top of the loaf starts to brown, cover with tinfoil and keep baking.  Once done, let cool in bread pan about 10 minutes, then turn out onto a cooling rack.  Whisk together powdered sugar and milk.  Once cool, you may add the glaze (although it’s great without the glaze too!).

Chocolate Cookies

chocolate cookies
It’s winter, which means it’s baking time!  I had a hankering for chocolate today, so I searched high and low for a recipe that I could make without having to go pick stuff up at the grocery store.  Chocolate mousse?  Nope. Brownies? Nope. Cake?  Nope.
Thank goodness for Martha Stewart.  I ran across this recipe, which was easy to cut in half (because I was running low on flour) and make gluten free and dairy free.  My revised version is below (makes between 12-15 cookies).

Ingredients:4 oz. semisweet chocolate (make sure it’s dairy free!)
2 Tbsp Earth Balance butter
1/3 cup gluten free flour
a little less than 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 a package of dairy free chocolate chips (we like dark chocolate)

Directions
Place the semisweet chocolate and butter in a bowl and microwave in 20 intervals, mixing each time, until melted (don’t overcook!).  In a bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt.  In mixing bowl, beat eggs, brown sugar, and vanilla until fluffy (or at least until very well mixed).  Add in chocolate mixture and mix well.  Add in flour mixture and mix until just incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips.  The batter won’t be as firm as regular cookie dough–this is okay!  Drop heaping spoonfuls onto a baking sheet (no need to grease first) and bake at 350 degrees for about 12 minutes, rotating the baking sheets halfway through baking.  Let cool on pan for about 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool.  The cookies are meant to be soft and chewy!
cookie close-up

Jovial Blueberry Apple Pie

Blueberry Apple Pie

Alas, no natural light was available when this one was ready to pop out of the oven. However, the taste was fantastic. I am looking forward to adding fresh thyme later this season!

Methods:

I used The Food Network’s Simple Blueberry Apple Pie Recipe with the Gluten Free Mountain Man Pie Crust, which is using Carol’s Sorghum Blend with Brown Rice flour instead of sweet rice flour.

White Wine Cake with Chocolate Frosting

Well, it’s been awhile since I posted anything on here–I have a rare break from my graduate courses, so what better to do than bake?

Ever bought a bottle of wine and been thoroughly disappointed?  Well, that happened not so long ago with a bottle of white.  It was organic, though, so we didn’t want it to go to waste, but it’s been sitting in our fridge for a couple weeks now.  Hence, a white wine cake!

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I actually used a normal recipe for this cake and just used our flour blend instead, but I forgot to add xanthan gum, so we were a bit worried it wasn’t going to turn out.  We were pleasantly surprised!  The recipe I used suggested a fruit topping, but I decided to make a chocolate frosting.  The recipe for the cake came from here and the recipe for the frosting came from here.  Enjoy!

White Wine Cake:

4 eggs, separated
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup white wine
2/3 cup oil
2 cups flour, sifted
1 T baking powder
pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease and flour a long loaf pan (16″ x 5″).  Beat together the egg yolks with half of the sugar* and the vanilla, until light. Beat in the wine and the oil. Fold in the flour and the baking powder.  Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt to the soft peak stage. Sprinkle on the remaining sugar and beat until stiff.*  Fold the egg whites into the wine mixture. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes.  Cool on rack in pan for about 10 minutes.  Turn out on wire rack to cool.

* I actually forgot about splitting the sugar and put the whole amount in with the yolks, rather than adding half to the whites.  It seemed to work out just fine anyway.

Chocolate Frosting (about 2 cups):

2 cups organic powdered sugar
1/4 cup Earth Balance butter, softened
1/4 cup plain rice milk
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp vanilla

In a mixing bowl, using an electric hand mixer, cream the powdered sugar with the margarine. Add the milk, cocoa powder, and vanilla, and continue to mix until smooth.  Spread on cake once it has cooled.

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Blueberry Pie, with a Twist

On a pie fix at the moment. This attempt at cleverness revealed a slightly creepy creation. Apple pie is calling my name next, but I had to get this one in. We have a lot more frozen blueberries where these are from (the freezer). I prepared three double crusts and froze them until I needed them. It’s made pie creation a breeze. I used the standard double crust recipe and found a blueberry pie recipe on Allrecipes.com. I read through the top two reviews and followed some of their advice. I used the 3/4 cup recommended sugar for a light sweetness that isn’t too rich. I used about 6 Tablespoons or 3/8 cup of tapioca flour for the thickener instead of cornstarch. I want to try arrowroot starch when I can afford it. I covered the edge with aluminum foil until the last 10 minutes of baking and kept the oven at 375 degrees. I brushed egg white and sugar on when I took the aluminum foil off. I took the pie out of the oven for this procedure. The last 10 minutes were an estimate, and mostly just watched for the crust to brown. I ended up with a total of about 55 minutes of baking.