A great big welcome to Lexie's Kitchen & Living. I hope you enjoy the recipes and ramblings. For the story behind this site read here

Follow a gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free diet? Check out my recently released cookbook

 

 

 


 

 

 

Wednesday
Nov072012

Cara's Cravings Clean Eating Cocktail Party

Grab a napkin and sample some bites at Cara's Cravings Clean Eating Cocktail Party 2012! Today over at Cara's Cravings I am sharing a quick and easy recipe for Mac Ricotta. Paired with your favorite gluten-free cracker, this macadamia nut "cheese" spread makes the perfect base for all kinds of toppings—sweet, savory or both.

Like you and I, Ms. Cara is a lover of clean food. Her blog event runs through the month of November and will showcase a host of like-minded and "like-eating" food bloggers.

Stop by Cara's Cravings each day this month for healthy hors d'oeuvre recipes that will be the hit of your holiday party.

 

Thursday
Oct252012

Google Hangout with Mother Nature Network

Last night I hungout with some very cool ladies in a Mother Nature Network Google Hangout on Air. We exchanged ideas for going "greener" this Halloween. I did mention the touches I added to our entry (above)—a branch the kids and I pulled out of the wooded area behind our house, construction paper crow cut-outs, cobwebs, spiders, and pumpkins. Quick, easy and fairly "green."

We didn't cover all the topics we had planned to but did talk a bunch about treats and ideas for making Halloween allergy-friendly.

Here are some treat options that might not break the bank:

For more inspiration, head on over to Mother Nature Network.

Wednesday
Oct172012

Peanut-Free "Peanut" Buttercream Frosting

Party Time!

It's party time at your local school. For many of us that means baking and sending ghoulish "safe" treats to class with our little ones.

If you're up for taking the quick and easy route, give these cupcakes a try.

Start with a Cake Mix

First, grab a gluten-free cake mix. Included in my recent TasterieBox was a package of one of my favorite deliciously dark chocolate cake mixes—so that's what I used. It is easily prepared using your favorite milk and egg substitutes. I used chia eggs. Another stellar mix to prepare with flax or chia eggs is this one.

Next Comes the Icing

Last week I posted a Sunflower Coconut Butter recipe that "kinda sorta" resembles peanut butter. I had some leftover so whipped up a "Peanut" Buttercream frosting. Yum! Recipe follows.

Top it Off with Creepiness

Get creative with toppings for this cupcake. These flies were a Michaels clearance item last year. Definitely grody (I'd rather not know what these bug-gers were sitting on before landing on my cupcakes. Ha! Realistic, no?.

Plastic spiders—another good and grody idea.

Looking for edible? These candies would be fun. Or how about cute little Jack-o'-lanterns (recipe follows). I picked up the candy molds at a thrift shop but am sure you could find something similar at your local craft store.

Have a great week everyone!

Peanut-Free "Peanut" Buttercream Frosting
Inspired by the buttercream frostings found in Paleo Indulgences by Tammy Credicott

Ingredients:

1/2 cup Spectrum Organic Palm SHORTENING
1/4 cup Sunflower Coconut Butter or Sunbutter®
2 tablespoons COCONUT OIL
1/4 cup MAPLE SYRUP
1 teaspoon VANILLA EXTRACT
1/8 scant teaspoon SALT

Directions:

  1. Ensure shortening and coconut oil are room temperature. Not melted, not super hard.
  2. Using an electric mixer whip all ingredients until smooth and light.
  3. Spread or pipe onto cake/cupcakes. For a more structured frosting, refrigerate 5-10 minutes.

Notes:

  1. For these cupcakes I piped the frosting on using an un-tipped icing bag. For this effect you will want to pipe on the frosting immediately after whipping it up. For a structured frosting, refrigerate 5-10 minutes until it just begins to firm up. It will firm up quick so keep an eye on it.
  2. This frosting melts at higher temperatures. I refrigerate the cupcakes after decorating and pull them out 5-10 minutes before serving.
  3. A tablespoon or two of arrowroot starch may be added to enhance the texture.

Peanut-Free "Peanut" Butter Cup Candies

Ingredients:

Sunflower Coconut Butter (or other nut/seed butter that solidifies when refrigerated)
Chocolate chips (like these)

Directions:

  1. Gently heat a small amount of nut butter and fill candy molds 3/4 full.
  2. Transfer to freezer and freeze until set.
  3. Gently heat chocolate chips and top off candy molds.
  4. Freeze until set.
  5. Serve frozen.
Tuesday
Oct162012

Almost Like Peanut Butter but Peanut-Free!

This post is linked to: Allergy-Free Wednesday Week 39

A good peanut-free peanut butter substitute is hard to find. This sunflower coconut butter is the closest I've made in taste and texture to honest-to-goodness peanut butter.

Nut-Free Peanut Butter-Like Spread

We've gone without peanut butter for a while now ... and we really miss the stuff. To satisfy our cravings we've been eating jar after jar of Sunbutter®— also known as sunflower butter, the most common (if not only) nut-free (but not coconut-free) substitute for peanut butter's creamy goodness. 

My kids love sunflower butter. I like it enough to eat it, but just find the roasted sunflower taste a wee bit overpowering.

So I thought about taming it.

But how?

Coconut!

To my surprise, this combination of toasted sunflower seeds and coconut is the closest substitute I've found, in taste and texture, to that of creamy peanut butter.

For the creamiest spread, you will need a high-powered blender such as a Blendtec, OmniBlend, or Vitamix. I ran a batch in my food processor and got a butter (after 15 minutes), but it was far from smooth. In a high-powered blender, friction and the resulting heat causes the mixture to liquefy. Once poured into jars and allowed to cool at room temperature, it should firm up to a creamy spreadable butter.

Peanut-Free "Almost Like Peanut Butter"
Sunflower Coconut Nut Butter Spread

Ingredients:

1/4 cup COCONUT SUGAR or granulated sugar
4 cups finely shredded COCONUT, unsweetened
1 cup raw SUNFLOWER SEEDS
1-1/2 tablespoons COCONUT OIL
1/4 heaping teaspoon SALT

Directions:

  1. Add coconut sugar to container of high-powered blender. Blend 10-15 seconds or until powdery. Remove and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet toast sunflower seeds over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the majority of seeds are golden in color. Transfer to blender container.
  3. Add to skillet coconut. ***Coconut toasts quickly*** Over medium heat warm coconut flakes until heated through and some of the shreds are golden in color. Remove from heat and set aside.
  4. Blend sunflower seeds on low until a fine powder forms.
  5. Add coconut oil and blend again, increasing to medium speed and pausing to scrape sides as needed.
  6. Blitz on high for 10 seconds and stop.
  7. Add 1 cup coconut. Blend at medium speed for 20-30 seconds then increase to high for 10, pausing to scrape sides as needed. At this point butter should be forming and liquefying.
  8. Repeat step seven, 1 cup of coconut at at time.
  9. Once all coconut has been incorporated and mixture is runny, add sugar and salt and blend on high to achieve desired smoothness, about 60-90 seconds.
  10. Mixture will be HOT and runny. Pour into jar(s), cover and cool at room temperature until firmed up. This can take 8-24 hours depend on temperature of your kitchen.
  11. Store at room temperature for up to a week or in fridge up to a month.

Notes:

  1. As the blender pulverizes and liquefies the mixture, you may notice what appears to be smoke wafting out of the blender container. No worries, this is an oil mist. No harm is being done to your blender. That said, if your blender starts to smell like hot rubber, let it rest and crank the speed down a knotch.
  2. ***If you are dealing with a severe (anaphylactic) peanut allergy, ensure your source of sunflower seeds can guarantee no cross contamination with peanuts or other foods you are allergic to***
Friday
Oct122012

Marshmallows in Progress

POST UPDATE:  Marshmallows are done! Here is the recipe.

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Since making a batch of honey marshmallow fluff following a recipe in this book, I have been obsessed with marshmallows—and making them with natural sweeteners.

Though I haven't landed on the perfect flavor combo yet, I thought I would tease you with these.

Aren't they adorable!!

Every night after dinner it's been "chocolate milk with marshmallows on top for dessert, mom!"

Want the recipe? Let me know in a comment.

Any good flavor ideas? I'm thinking peppermint? Or how about pumpkin spice?