Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Gluten Free Red Velvet Cupcakes.....

I was totally jonesing for a really good cupcake!  I saw a picture online of a red velvet cake and thought!  " I must do this!"  So I searched online for good recipes.  I didn't limit myself to Gluten Free recipes, but found this one that I had to modify. 

I found the original Gluten-full recipe on Simply Scratch.  It's a blog I found last night and the recipe worked so well and her photos are so pretty!  Click Here for the link to her recipe.

So, I made them today, and Mmmm!  You should totally try these!  My pictures aren't anywhere near the quality of others, but here they are

I first sifted the flour, sugar, xantham gum, baking soda, salt and coco powder into the bowl of my stand mixer.  (btw my kitchenaid mixer is from the Lord! It is such a beautiful thing! ) 

Then I added the coco powder.  ( Look Ma, left handed!)


Mixed all the dry ingredients with a fork and set it in the mixer with the whisk attachment.
Crack 2 eggs in a large measuring cup with a pour spout.   

 Give them a light whisk!

Add in the buttermilk and vinegar

Then add the vanilla extract and the food color.  I used 1-1oz bottle of red. 

I then pour all the wet ingredients into the mixer bowl with all the dry and mix well.

I put the batter into the cupcake tin, lined with the snazzy black and white cups (that were on sale for $.99!) 

 While they were baking the frosting debate began.  Cream Cheese or Buttercream?  Buttercream always wins out, because I don't particularly care for cream cheese icing.

So the finished product turned out really great!

 Then this!

Let the Nomming begin!
2 1/2 cups gluten free flour mix
1 tsp xantham gum
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 tbl unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 eggs (room temp)
1 tbl vinegar
1 cup vegetable oil (original recipe called for 1 1/2 cup grapeseed oil, but I didn't have that and I just couldn't get myself to put that last 1/2 cup oil in)
1 cup butter milk (room temp)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla ext.
1 oz red food color (original recipe called for 2 oz but I only had 1)
Preheat oven to 350.  Line muffin pan with cupcake papers.  
In mixer bowl combine all dry ingredients sifting well and stirring to evenly distribute all the cocoa powder and xantham gum.
In another bowl or large glass measuring cup, combine wet ingredients mixing well.  Add wet ingredients to dry and mix well on medium speed. 
distribute to cupcake papers, and shake and shimmy to pan to release any bubbles in the batter.
Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. 
Let cool completely then top with your favorite frosting. 
and last but not least, Enjoy! 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A few things I am obsessed with...

I don't have all that many obsessions and one of them will be pretty obvious.  But here are some of the things, I find myself addicted to just now.  It will change periodically as obsessions do. 

1.  Solitaire
I play it on my kindle and now have my daughter addicted.  I'll expect to play a couple of hands then find I've stayed up way too late. 

2.  Call the Midwife on PBS. I did some doula training and really support midwifery.  This series isn't about preaching midwifery vs. hospital birth.  It is really about a blue collar area of London and the relationships and families formed there.  Love!!

 3. Most obviously to all my readers...Gluten Free Baking.  (Especially cupcakes)  I have been having some victories and a lot of failures trying to find the best GF cupcakes.  I found a recipe or two that work ok for a basic vanilla and now want to start "tweaking" that to make some more flavorful cupcakes.  My next mission is a chocolate!  Mmm!


Friday, April 19, 2013

Friday catch up and weigh in.

Last weekend, my youngest carpool princess had her school play.  Her first play and it was a take on General Hospital.  Fun and fast.  The entire play lasted about 30 minutes.  We had the early show (6:00) and a later show (7:15).  Daddy and big sister (who was in plays at the same school last year) missed the first showing due to obscene traffic. 

It is a family tradition started by my folks, that after plays, concerts, etc we go to get ice cream after.  So Friday night after a weigh in, I had ice cream.  Yea...but so good. 

Then that night, she and I take a 2 hour drive to go to my mom's house.  She's been a widow for just over a year, and had put the childhood home on the market.  At the beginning of April, she got an offer, and they closed this week.  So we went out there to help her pack,  As it turns out, packing and loading boxes into storage rooms and eating "on the go" do NOT lead to eating healthy.  I gained about 4 pounds over the 2-3 days we were doing all that.  Then I came home and ended up with a mild tummy flu-thing.  So it all worked out to get me back to right where I was last Friday.

This weeks weigh in results are 0.  No loss/no gain. 

But this is a new week, and I intend to make a dent in this weight. 

I keep telling myself that I am strong, and healthy and capable!  I am able able to do this.  I try to come back to the scripture.  "I can do all things, through Christ who gives me strength."


Cakes for Hubby's work

My hubby's workplace had a potluck for all the April birthdays.  It's the south, we must "potluck".  He came home and asked me to make a cake or two for the potluck.  Wait?  I baked them, and delivered them, and he didn't have to do any work for His potluck.  Ah!  Ok, I see how it is. 

Anyway, I didn't have to bake Gluten Free so it was really easy.  Then I decided to try the rose technique on the purple cake. 

Turned out pretty good.

I then made the chocolate basket weave (which is one of my favorites). 

They loved them and they tasted good. 


Friday, April 12, 2013

Friday Weigh In

Happy Friday! Weather here is a brisk 50 degrees this morning, the sun is shining after a rainy couple of days.   My yard is happy but my dogs are not. They don't like it when the sky leaks! 
So, I weighed in this morning and....Who Hoo Victory!  I lost 2 pounds! I was trying to take the supplements but just couldn't get them down.  So that means this weight loss is just me. I am pretty proud, but realize I have a ways to go.

Also had to make 2 cakes for hubby's work. Will have pictures to follow.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Weight Loss Update!

I've decided to weigh in on Fridays.  I started my original or starting place weigh in Monday.  Not going to give you the actual starting number because well, that would be just too embarrassing. 

I was supposed to take the supplement but couldn't get it down Wednesday or Thursday.  So, I basically took it for 2 days.  I have a hard time swallowing pills anyway. Couldn't even take an aspirin until I was 26.  I find supplements difficult, because they float.  Weird, I know! 

So, with a sick little carpoolprincess home all week, and cupcake drama, I did actually lose 1/2 a pound.  That may be pathetic to you, but it's progress to me. 

Have a Great one!

Gluten Free Cupcakes: The Saga Continues

As you may have read in a previous post, I've been having problems with making a decent gluten free cupcake. So, I bought some new ingredients and tried a recipe that was handed down from my Great Grandmother.  Her recipe was gluten-full and butter full and kind of dense on it's own. 

So, I tried a premade flour mix.  The last one I tried was kinda, well, gross!  So, I got a new one and it had no chickpea flour in it.  Now don't get me wrong, I love chickpea flour (besan flour) for savory but not for baking.  This new flour, is rice flour and starches and worked really well.  The recipe didn't make alot. 

The texture of the batter was less like taffy, or bread dough and more like very thick batter.  And don't judge my ancient semi-rusty tins, they can't help it. 

So, Hey!  They cooked pretty and rose so nicely!  That is already a big victory considering the horible sunken gooey messes I made before.  Look!  Aren't they cute?! 

Then I played with the camera a bit. Brought out the milk glass fruit bowl and Grandma's china! 

Oh, Black and White!  Maybe the Cleavers or Ricardos are coming for tea! 

They were a great texture, but slightly dry.  So I will be trying again to moisten the final product without going all the way to gummy!

when I get it perfect, I'll post the recipe for you all.


Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Wedding cake

Oh yea! I forgot to post the wedding cake and groom's cake pictures. My nephew got married in March and Auntie Beth did their cakes. Here are a couple of pictures.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Gluten Free Lemon Cupcakes.

So, lately I have had a hard time with a tried and true basic Gluten Free cupcake recipe. I made some for the carpool princess' baptism in early March and they were soo dense and just unedible. Ick! They made great paperweights.  So I had to try them again. They were soo gooey. Kinda like the toy slime stuff from back in the 80's. (not that I remember the 80's mind you) So, I tried them again and adjusted the temp of the oven and the liquid content.  Yea, that didn't work either.  They rose nicely then fell hard like a drunk coed after last call. ( that's called imagery and my high school creative writing teacher would give me detention if she could for using that example)
On attempt number 4, I finally got a super dense but "non collapsed" cupcake. They tasted ok, but the texture just wasn't right. I'd changed the oven temp again, and cooled them more slowly, and changed the liquid and eggs and said a prayer and knocked on wood.... Still the cupcakes were meh. (yes, meh is an official culinary term)
So after much more research and a little private investigating I think I figured out me problem. Everyone who knows me knows I like a great deal. GF flour is expensive and I found some great GF flour at my IndoPak market. Well a few weeks ago I tried a larger asian market. Korean I think and got some rice flour there. The Korean market did not translate into english all the items I was looking for. Hmm. Not very helpful for this linguistically challenged person if you ask me. So I think I bought sweet rice flour instead of regular rice flour and according to my expert sleuthing sweer rice flour is gummy when used in baking.
So there you have it. Therfore I had to try my cupcakes again with sorghum flour instead. The color was slightly darker than with fine rice flour but they taste good.
GF Lemon cupcake
1 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup tapioca starch
1/2 cup rice flour
1 tsp xantham gum
1tsp baking soda
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup lemon pie filling (gf)
2tsp vanilla ext
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
Learned to aerate the flour and starch before measuring and sifting together. Then wisk together well.
I baked them in a 350 degree oven for almost 30 minutes.
I then made a lemon "Buttercream". I didn't use butter though because I was in a hurry and the butter was too cold.
1 cup butter (butter flavor crisco)
4 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
1/3 cup (about) lemon pie filling
1/4 cup milk (ish)
1tsp vanilla ext.
They were really good. If I do say so myself.
Bon Apetit!

This is No April Fools Post!

Ok, I may share thoughts and recipes and reading lists, but I seldom actually share personal information.  Kinda think it's safer that way.  However, since I don't really think anyone is reading this but me, I'm making an exception. 

I am what doctors would call morbidly obese.  I need to lose about 150 lbs to be at fighting weight.  That is so difficult for me to admit verbally even though anyone looking at me could guess.  So, I have decided to track my journey to a healthier me. 

I know that the number on the scale does not define me, and does not equal my worth.  However, it's the way I am treated by others.  Most salespeople won't look me in the eye.  It's like, I'm somehow less than a human.  I also have decided too that this is the time because I'm finding it difficult to do some very simple basic things.  I'm too large for lawn chairs and ended up missing my nephews first baseball game because there were no bleachers.  Ok, so April is the month! 

I know this journey will be difficult and more than likely lengthy.  I have not only body image issues to deal with, but exercise insecurities.  I need to work on food, obviously, but more so than that I need to work on my mind and heart. 

I am starting today a supplement advertised on Dr. Oz called Garcinia Cambogia.  It is supposed to help with appetite, and fat burning and energy without the crazy buzz.  So this morning I weighed in and took my first dose.

My ultimate weight loss goal is 100 lbs, but my more immediate goal is 10lbs.