Saturday, January 31, 2015

Snow Play Dough

I think pretty much everyone has had a little snow this winter!  One of our snowy days, we made some snow play dough.  I found a great play dough recipe on Pinterest to make play dough with a stand mixer!  It is SO much easier for me than cooking it over the stove.  As inspired by a different play dough recipe, I just omitted the food coloring and added white and silver glitter!  I even added a teeny bit of vanilla flavoring to make it smell good...

Homemade Playdough Recipe - Click to link to recipe.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Homemade Chocolate Ice Cream {Egg-free}

For Christmas, I got the ice cream bowl attachment for my stand mixer!  Yay!  I am so excited about this.  I have been experimenting with a few recipes.  So far, this is my favorite!  Who doesn't love chocolate ice cream?!

Homemade Chocolate Ice Cream - click to link to recipe.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Southern Cornbread {Egg-free, Gluten-free}

I just pulled this cornbread out of my oven.  The picture below was taken as it is cooling.  I also made this recipe over Christmas, as written.  But I took note that the egg was 'optional'.  So, this time I made without the optional egg.  I do not have a cast iron skillet.  It is on my wishlist.  As you can see, I made the cornbread in a round cake pan.  I still preheated the pan but I used one tablespoon of butter in place of the bacon grease (also not readily on hand).  I found this recipe to be a teeny bit salty for my taste, even with using unsalted butter.  In the adaptation printed below, I also reduced the salt.

You have to try this the next time you make soup or chili this winter.  It isn't as sweet as my other cornbread recipes but is more authentic with true southern style cornbread.  Yummy!

Southern Cornbread Recipe

2 c cornmeal
2 t baking soda
¼ t salt
2 T sugar
1 ¼ c buttermilk
6 T unsalted butter, melted
1 T bacon drippings or unsalted butter

Preheat the oven 400°.  Put the bacon fat or butter in a 9 or 10 inch cast iron skillet or cake pan and put into the oven.  Mix together all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Mix in buttermilk. Stir in the melted butter.  Add the cornbread batter to the hot pan and making sure it is evenly distributed.  Bake for about 20 minutes or until the edges are beginning to brown.  Let cornbread rest for 10-30 minutes before cutting.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Pecan Caramel Cheesecake {Egg-free, Gluten-free}

During all of our egg-free and gluten-free Christmas festivities and celebrating with family, I also made this Pecan Caramel Cheesecake.  This is a slight adaptation of my previously posted recipe for Cheesecake (EF, GF), which was shown served with fresh berries.  

If you need a gluten-free cheesecake, I especially like how the ground pecans enhance the taste of crust when made with gluten-free cookie crumbs.  I think it adds some flavor and richness to the crust.

Pecan Caramel Cheesecake

3 pkg 8 oz cream cheese
1 c sugar
1 pkg gelatin (1 oz)
3 T cold water
1 c evaporated milk (8 oz)
2 t vanilla
1 3/4 c graham cracker crumbs or gluten-free cookie1
¼ c finely ground pecans
6 T butter or margarine, softened
1/3 c sugar
Caramel sauce2
8-10 Pecan halves

Be sure the cream cheese and butter are at room temperature prior to starting.

Preheat oven to 325o.  Mix graham cracker crumbs, ground pecans, butter and 1/3 c sugar and press into the bottom and slightly up the sides of a spring form pan.  Set aside while preparing the filling.

Sprinkle gelatin over water to soften.  Set aside.  Using an electric mixer, cream the cream cheese until fluffy.  Gradually add sugar and vanilla.  Bring evaporated milk to a soft boil.  Remove from heat and add softened gelatin, stirring until dissolved.   Let cool slightly.  Very gradually while mixing constantly, add the milk and gelatin mixture to the cream cheese mixture.  Once fully incorporated, scrap the sides of bowl to make sure all of the cream cheese is mixed in.  Pour into pan over prepared crust.

Bake at 325o for 1 hour.  Turn oven off.  Leave cake in oven and set the door ajar for 1 additional hour.  Chill overnight or 4 hours before serving. 

While cheesecake is chilling, toast pecan halves at 350o for 8-10 minutes in oven.  Remove and cool.  Prior to serving, top cheesecake with caramel sauce and toasted pecan halves.
Serves 8-10

1I use gluten-free S’moreables Graham Style Crackers and they work great.  Depending on how sensitive you are to eggs, they were noted as may contain eggs.  My husband is not as sensitive as some.  He cannot have anything with egg ingredients but he can have something that may be proceeded on equipment with items containing egg. 

2Check your labels carefully on the caramel sauce.  Several had gluten and or egg!  I used Smucker’s Simple DelightSalted Caramel Topping.  This topping had, well, simple ingredients.  If you are allergic to gluten, it does have vanilla extract and does not specify that it is gluten free.  So, if you are fairly sensitive, you may want to check with the manufacture or try a different brand.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Panna Cotta {Egg-free, Gluten-free}

We had an egg-free, gluten-free Christmas.  For our Christmas day dinner, I wanted to make something for dessert that everyone could eat.  I also wanted something fairly easy to prepare during our busy Christmas festivities.  So, I made my go to Panna Cotta recipe from the Joy of Cooking cookbook.  I love this recipe.  It is simple and delicious!  I am pretty sure they wouldn't appreciate me reprinting it here.  So, I found a couple of recipes online that are similar at and  But if you have a Joy of Cooking cookbook, be sure to look it up there!

Panna Cotta with fresh berries - Recipe from the Joy of Cooking cookbook

Similar recipes can be found online at and