Salted Brown Butter Crispy Squares + Mini Smitten Kitchen Cook Book Review

While attending dinner at my friend and his wife’s home recently, I casually opened up one of their cookbooks and immediately fell in love. The book happened to be the first cookbook of the legendary food blogger; Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen. As  a foodie I had heard of the Smitten Kitchen blog but never followed it. Well, I must say after perusing several pages of the book I immediately fell in love.

Mini Review: The Smitten Kitchen

Deb’s recipes are simple, relatable and unfussy making them perfect for the everyday or occasional home cook. Deb’s prose is funny, personable, and amusing. I found myself taking screenshots of many of the recipes and quickly found that one of the most simple of them all was the recipe that I most wanted to try.

Deb took an American classic, Rice Crispy Squares and elevated them with simple real ingredients to make a delightful dessert that is not only simple but mouthwatering. This recipe for Salted Brown Butter Crispy Squares is the epitome of simple things are best and is now one of my favorite gluten free recipes.

Salted Brown Butter Crispy Squares

Ingredients

8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons vanilla
5 cups Rice Crispy Treats
1 (10) ounce bag mini marshmallows

Preparation

  1. Coat with non-stick spray an 8-inch square cake pan with 2-inch sides.
  2. In a large pot, melt butter and vanilla over medium-low heat. It will melt, then foam, then turn clear golden and finally start to turn brown and smell nutty. Stir frequently
  3. As soon as the butter takes on a nutty color, turn the heat off and stir in the marshmallows.
  4. Remove the pot from the stove and stir in the salt and cereal together. Using a silicon spatula quickly spread into prepared pan.
  5. Allow to cool in refrigerator until  set (about one hour).

Source: Smitten Kitchen 

Homemade Vegan Hot Cocoa

I’m over winter! There I confessed. Even though there’s only 30 days (and counting) until Spring it seems like the winter has just started. The S.A.D is starting wear on my psyche and despite my attempts to see the bright side, I’m beginning to want to do nothing other than stay in bed all day hiding from the cold.

However, instead of giving into the feeling, I dragged myself out of the house today and went to an evening gentle yoga class. I’m so glad I did. My body felt so much better for it. Upon my arrival home I immediately pulled out my recipe below for Homemade Vegan Hot Cocoa and whipped up a steaming mug full. There’s nothing like vegan hot cocoa to warm your bones. I’ll keep the warm beverages coming while I continue to schedule self-caring treatments to keep my body healthy.

Homemade Vegan Hot Cocoa

Ingredients

1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 cup coconut milk
4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup coconut palm sugar or stevia, or less

Preparation

  1. Add all ingredients into small saucepan heat until hot and well blended, stirring throughout until all ingredients are blended. Transfer to a mug, serve immediately.

Hot Cocoa Chocolate Bundt Cake

My bundt cake streak continues with this Hot Cocoa Bundt Cake that I tastespotted over on the Cookies and Cups blog. I took the best elements of this cake (the hot cocoa) and married them with my tried and true gluten free chocolate cake recipe. This is my first time baking my chocolate cake in a bundt pan and it turned out amazing. Get into the recipe and be sure to have a slice of this decadent cake for breakfast with a mug of hot cocoa or coffee.

Hot Cocoa Chocolate Bundt Cake 

Ingredients

dry

1 cup all-purpose gluten free flour blend
3⁄4 teaspoons baking powder
1⁄4 teaspoon baking soda
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
1⁄4 cup + 2 tablespoon dark cocoa powder

wet

3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1⁄4 cup vegan margarine
5 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla
1⁄2 cup rice milk
1⁄2 cup brewed hot chocolate (may use water or non-dairy milk)
2 large eggs

glaze

  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips 
  • 2 tablespoons dry hot chocolate mix
  • 1/4 cup rice milk
  • 1 tablespoon vegan margarine

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Sift together the baking powder, baking soda, salt, cocoa, and sugar in bowl and set aside
  2. In a Kitchenaid stand mixer, cream margarine and sugar until light and fluffy; about 2 -3 minutes.
  3. Add the oil and continue mixing until the mixture looks like wet sand.
  4. Combine the rice milk, coffee (or other liquid), and vanilla and add all at once. Beat until just combined.
  5. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well between additions.
  6. Spray Bundt pan generously with non-stick spray.
  7. Slowly pour mixture into Bundt pan
  8. Bake 60- 70 minutes
  9. Allow cake to cool completely before glazing

glaze preparation 

  1. In small saucepan over low heat melt chocolate, dry hot chocolate mix, rice milk and vegan margarine together until melted, stirring frequently
  2. Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes
  3. Pour over cooled cake

Source: Cookies & Cups 

Glazed Banana Bundt Cake

I’m elated to be back in the swing of sharing recipe development and food photography for all of my loyal readers here in 2019. My return to basics begins with this luscious Glazed Banana Bundt Cake which I tastespotted on the interwebs a few days after the new year. Naturally, I had every ingredient in my pantry right along with frozen overripe bananas. This cake got rave reviews at a recent potlock and makes the perfect early morning or late afternoon treat with tea or coffee

Glazed Banana Bundt Cake

Ingredients

dry

3 cups all purpose gluten free flour blend
2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoons salt

wet

1 + 3/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temp
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1+ 3/4 cup mashed banana (use overripe bananas)
2 eggs separated

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a small bowl whisk together dry ingredients, set aside
  3. In a Kitchenaid stand mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy
  4. Add in separated egg yolks and vanilla
  5. Slowly beat in flour blend and applesauce until completely blended
  6. Beat in mashed banana, use a silicon spatula of white sides of bowl ‘
  7. In a separate bowl, beat separated egg whites until stiff peaks form
  8. Fold egg whites into mixture as the last step (batter will be thick)
  9. Spray bundt pan generously with non-stick spray
  10. Slowly pour mixture into bundt pan
  11. Bake 45-55 minutes

Source: Life Made Simple Bakes

enjoylife grain and seed bars

Enjoy Life Grain & Seed Bars | Product Review

With 2018 in the rearview every one is slowly getting back into the swing of the New Year and with that setting goals for cleaner, healthier, and better ways of being. Here on theglutenfreechef blog we promote whole plant based foods processed as minimally as possible but this doesn’t mean that busy active lifestyles don’t need a supplement here and there.

This is where our favorite gluten free snack brand; Enjoylife comes into play. As a brand Enjoy Life is all about taste-FULL worry-free snacks that are full of whole ingredients but free of the most common allergens; gluten, wheat, soy, dairy, and more. They have a huge product line that includes baking chocolate, cookies, snack bars and more. Currently, we’re snacking on their newest flavors of grain and seed bars; cranberry orange and lemon poppyseed.

Enjoy Life Grain & Seed Bars

The Cranberry Orange Grain & Seed Bars re packed with purity protocol certified gluten free oats, three types of sorghum, plant-based protein, and fruit including tangy orange and sweet cranberries. They are the perfect am pick me up right as you get up in the morning or a lovely mid-morning snacks with a serving of greek yogurt or almonds. Even better this flavor or one of the other five including:

can fill the sneakiest late night sweet tooth craving. Each bar has only 5 grams of suga, 4 grams of protein, and only 120 calories. Whats’ better is you can literally see the real whole ingredients that make up each bar and with a simply ingredient list you can know what you are putting into your body.

Top 10 Most Viewed Blog Posts of 2018

2018 was a whirlwind year for theglutenfreechef (read more) and the first time since its inception that the blog had little original content for much of the year. Fortunately, the blog has been blessed with amazing international readers and supporters that kept the website vibrant via Facebook and Instagram activity. Keeping to tradition, we found it vital to share the posts that received the most views throughout the year even though original content was kept to a minimum

So without further adieu… The Top 10 Most Viewed Blog Posts of 2018

Top 10 Most Viewed Blog Posts of 2018

10. Turkey Meatballs | Recipe 

9. Dole Quick & Easy Broccoli Slaw | Recipe

8. Chocolate, Banana, Apple Smoothie | Recipe

7. Vegan Sweet Potato Cabbage Soup | Recipe

6. Gluten Cutter, Digestive Enzyme | Product Review

5. The Honest Company | Product Review

4. Sorghum Biscuits | Recipe

3. Alexia Crispy Seasoned Potato Puffs w/roasted garlic | Product Review

2. Vegan Sorghum Pancakes

1. All About Graham Flour

Happy New Year | Where In the World Was The Gluten Free Chef in 2018?

Dear Readers,

We made it! One more year down one more year ahead of us. If you’ve been a long time follower of theglutenfreechefblog.com you’ve more than likely noticed a decrease in engagement from me throughout the year. For this I apologize. 2018 was a year of great sacrifice for me as it pertains to this blog and theglutenfreechef brand. I spent the majority of the year building my skills as a non-profit leader and growing 540, Inc. and 540WMain Communiversity.

Initially I thought I would be able to devote the same amount of time to both endeavors but early on last year I let go of this optimistic burden and decided that half doing many things marginally well made less sense than paring down my focus and doing a few things very well. This decision meant that for the first time, I would out this blog on the back burner of my creative focus since we started in 2012.

What to Expect in 2019

But don’t fret. This decision has been a blessing in disguise. This creative break has given me a renewed zeal for this blog and brand and allowed me to cultivate a refreshed and renewed interest in the way I am growing and investing in this blog and. Simply stated, I cannot wait to share all the amazing new recipes, digital content and more than I have planned out for this new year.

From the bottom of my heart I thank you for your patience and support in this journey that has continued for over six years and counting. As I’ve shared before, my present is the result of this website and I will never forget the blog that started it all. Here’s to new beginnings in 2019.

xoxo

theglutenfreechef