Thursday, August 30, 2012

Gluten-Free, Vegan Peach Cobbler with Raspberries & Basil

Paula Deen is such a hoot.  When I was in both undergrad and grad school, I used to watch her show whenever I was feeling stressed, homesick, or just needed a distraction from the drudgery to make me smile and laugh.  Her personality is truly off the charts, and her talent for incorporating butter into all her recipes may only be rivaled by the ease with which she makes one-syllable words multi-syllabic with her honeyed Southern twang.  My favorites were "dip" [pronounced 'dee-yip-uh'] and "smoked" [pronounced 'smo-ked-id'].   I rarely had any desire to make any of her recipes, but I certainly appreciated the joy she infused into her cooking and baking and the way she made it all seem like such fun.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Guacamole & My Love for the Avocado

 [sigh] Avocado.  One of those foods that has me at "Hello."

I was accustomed to having it as a dessert as a young child, mashed up with shaved ice, sugar, and evaporated milk or blended into a milkshake.  And I'm pretty sure that the term avocado wasn't yet in my vocabulary.  At the time it was just the "green stuff."  So the first time I had it in a savory way and learned what it was was truly strange - and quite memorable. 

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Gluten-Free, Vegan Cracked Pepper & Fennel Sugar Cookies

One of my favorite snacks as a child was Stella D'Oro Anisette Sponge Cookies.  Shaped like biscotti, they were crisp on the outside, but soft, slightly dry, and spongey on the inside - like pannetone.  Perfect for dunking.  They were my grandmother's favorite cookie, and when she would ask my brother, sister, and I what we wanted for merienda (meaning "afternoon snack" in Spanish), I would always yell, "Stella Dora! Stella Dora!"  

[Funny fact:  I googled, "Stella Dora" when I first started researching for this post.  Old habits die hard, apparently.]

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Ratio Rally! Gluten-Free Lavender Angel Food Cupcakes

I so didn't think I was going to make it for this month's Rally challenge.  Even now, I'm pinching myself.  Between opening a show this weekend, teaching dance intensive camps every week, and maintaining my regular day job, I have been going a wee bit insane with the overscheduling.  But alas, here we are at the beginning of another month and another Ratio Rally.