Snapshots of life and crafts on our little homestead

Archive for the ‘Treats’ Category

Peach fiber muffins

These moist and tasty high fiber muffins are totally vegan and easy to make.


  • 3 cups (750ml) Organic bran cereal
  • 2 ½ cups (725ml) sifted whole wheat flour
  • 4 tsp (20ml) baking powder
  • ½ cup (125ml) + 2 tbsp (30ml) coconut oil
  • ⅔ cup (180ml) maple syrup
  • 1 ¾ cup (425ml) plant based milk
  • 2 tbsp (30ml) ground flax seed
  • 1 tsp (5ml) vanilla
  • 1 cup (250ml) skinned and chopped peaches


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F/177°C. Prepare 2 standard 12-cup muffins tins.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together coconut oil, maple syrup, milk, flax, and vanilla. Set aside.
  3. In a food processor, grind bran cereal into a fine flour. In a medium bowl, combine ground cereal, flour, and baking powder, mix well. Add chopped peaches and stir to coat.
  4. Use a fork to stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Do not over mix.
  5. Divide batter between 20-24 muffins cups. Bake for 18-22 minutes, until the tops are golden-brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  
  6. Once cooked, cool muffins on a rack.

Chocolate Egg Custard

Spring has finally arrived so the chickens and ducks have started laying again, which means it is time to start making more egg based dishes.

Today I made a family favorite — chocolate egg custard. This tasty dish is light, sweet and creamy. Best of all it uses a limited number of ingredients and only takes about 10 minutes mix at 45 minutes to cook, which makes the custard a great weeknight treat. The recipe for the custard is as follows.


  • 4 cup milk (I use 2%)
  • 6 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Heat the milk in a large saucepan until bubbles form around the edges. Remove from the burner and set aside.
  3. Add the eggs, sugar, vanilla, salt, and cocoa to a blinder and give it a few pulses until blended.
  4. Turn the blender to a low speed and gradually add the warmed milk to the egg mixture.
  5. Pour the custard into a 9×13 casserole dish or 9 custard cups.
  6. Place the dish or cups in a large roasting pan and fill the pan with enough water to rehash about an inch from the top.
  7. Bake for about 45 minutes or until the custard has just set. 
  8. Cool before serving. 

Hubbard Squash Pie

The winter squash harvest is starting to come in. Unfortunately, the squirrels have reeked havoc on crops this year. Many summer and winter squash were eaten prior to maturity or scared by their little nails.  Some of the Hubbard squash grew to maturity but were to scared for long term storage and needed to be processed immediately. I used one of these squash to make our first pie for the season since Hubbard, butternut, buttercup squash and pumpkin are interchangeable in pies and quick breads.


The recipe that I used is as follows. I hope that your family enjoys it as much as mine does.


  • 1 medium Hubbard squash
  • 1/2 stick butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 unbaked pie crust
  • Maple Whipped Cream, optional, recipe follows

Maple Whipped Topping:

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degree F.
  2. Slice into quarters, seed and bake squash for 1 hour in the oven on a baking sheet. When done, let cool.
  3. Scrape the pulp out of the skin, transfer to a large bowl, and mash. Set 4 cups of the mash aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, beat together butter, sugar, and brown sugar until creamy. Add eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and salt.
  5. Add evaporated milk and stir mixture into squash. Beat together with mixer until smooth and pour into an unbaked pie shell.
  6. Bake on bottom rack of oven for 1 hour or until center of pie is firm. Serve warm. Add dollop of whipped cream if desired.

Maple Whipped Topping:

In a medium bowl, beat together whipping cream and confectioners’ sugar. Add maple syrup. Beat together until soft peaks form.


Back to basics: Egg Custard

This time of year our chickens start producing a lot of eggs and there is a lot of milk avalable, so I make a lot of old fashioned recipes for family and friends. One recipe that I make often is egg custard. It only takes about five minutes to prepare, uses simple ingredients, and if made in single serving container can be pulled out and dressed up for guests.


My family likes the custard plain with a healthy sprinkle of nutmeg on top. For guests it can be pulled out of the refrigator, topped with fresh seasonal fruit and some fresh whipped cream. Some of my favorite fruit toppings are blueberries, raspberries and strawberries in simple syrup.

The custard recipe that I use is:

  • 4 cups milk (room tempature)
  • 6 large eggs (room tempature)
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • fresh ground nutmeg

Cooking Directions


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Place all of the ingridents in a blinder and mix until will incorporated.
  3. Pour mixture into 8-one cup baking dishes or a 9×13 inch pan. Place in a large pan with enough water to reach about 1 inch  from the top of the custard dish(s).
  4. Sprinkle a bit more nutmeg on the top of each dish.
  5. Bake for about 45 minutes or until the custard has just set. Be careful not to over cook.
  6. Cool custard then cover and refrigerate. Will keep for 5-7 days in refrigerator.


Apple Cheesecake Bar

Sunday dinner at our house is always a nice meal finished with a special dessert. Today I made a simple meal of baked ziti, green beans, and apple cheesecake bars to welcome in the new week.  The bars are so yummy that I thought you might like to have the recipe for the three layer bars.

Apple Cheesecake Bars

Apple cheesecake bars

Layer 1: Crust

  • 1/2 cup soft butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup flour

Cream butter and sugar together. Blend in vanilla and flour. Spread in a prepared. 7 x 11 inch pan.

Apple cream cheese bars - layer 1

Layer 2: Filling

  • 8 oz low fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Combine cream cheese and sugar. Add egg and vanilla and mix well. Spread over unbaked crust.

Apple cream cheese bars - layer 2

Layer 3: Topping

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 4 cups diced apples
  • 1/3 cup slivered almonds

Toss apples in sugar and cinnamon. Arrange evenly over cream cheese. Sprinkle on almonds.

Apple cream cheese bars - layer 3

Bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes.

Reduce heat to 400 degrees and bake for 20-25 minutes. Cool.

Cut into bars or squares. Serve.

Apple cream cheese bars

Yummy low sugar and fat-free zucchini Bread

We woke to a cool morning so I decided to do a little baking before the heat of the day set in. I made a couple of fat-free quick breads that allowed me to use some of our garden harvest and a few over ripe bananas that we had hanging out in the freezer.  I made mini zucchini chip and banana breads. Both breads are fat free, vegan, low in sugar and super most and favorable. The recipe for the zucchini bread can be found below and the banana bread can be found here.  Substitute organic eggs for the flax eggs in the recipes if you are not concerned about eating vegan.

zucchini and banana breads

My honey cut into the large loaf of zucchini bread before I could take the picture 😦


  • 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour or whole wheat cake flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ginger powder
  •  2 flax eggs (2 Tbsp ground flax seed and 6 Tbsp water)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cane sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 packed cup shredded zucchini
  • 1/2 cup carob chips, chocolate chips or nuts


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare 8 mini loaf pans or one standard loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Mix the ground flax seed with the water in a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Mix the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and chips or nuts in a medium bowl.
  4. Grate the zucchini and pack into a measuring cup — dumping off any liquid that rises to the top of the measuring cup.
  5. In a large bowl mix the flax eggs, applesauce, brown sugar, cane sugar, vanilla extract, lemon juice and zucchini.
  6. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet until just combined. Be careful not to over mix.
  7. Pour the batter into the pan(s) and place in oven.
  8. Bake for 35 – 45 minutes or until a toothpick come out clean. The exact amount of cooking time will depend on the oven and size of pans used.
  9. Cool on a rack and enjoy or freeze for a later date.

Warming the kitchen with muffins

We are under a winter storm advisory for the next three days. It is projected that we will receive between 8 – 14 inches of snow between tonight and tomorrow. In preparation for the snow we loaded more wood into the garage for the wood stove, topped off the fuel in the tractor for plowing and backed some muffins as a reward for all the snow removal work we will have over the next few days.

This morning I made cranberry applesauce and lemon chia seed muffins for the week, and since the oven was on baked some butternut squash from last falls harvest for soup.

winter muffins

The muffins turned out so well that I thought I would share the recipes with you.

Cranberry Applesauce Muffins


  • 2 cups almond flour (dried nut residue left over from creating milk, or it can be bought at most stores)
  • 1/4 cup date or coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup cranberries, thawed


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line or grease a 12 cup muffin tin.
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Combine wet ingredients in a medium bowl.
  4. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients, then fold in cranberries.
  5. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full.
  6. Bake until golden brown ans toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 25 minutes.
  7. Cool on a wire rack

Lemon Chia Seed Muffins


  • 2 Tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/3 cup hot water
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp lemon zest


  1. Place chia seeds in hot water and let rest for 10 minutes to allow seeds to gel.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line or grease a 12 cup muffin tin.
  3. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl.
  4. In another bowl mix the honey eggs, yogurt, melted coconut oil, lemon juice, and zest well.
  5. Pour wet ingredients into dry and mix until just combined.
  6. Next, fold in the chia seeds and mix again.
  7. Spoon batter into prepared muffin tins.
  8. Bake of 30-35 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown ans a toothpick comes out clean.
  9. Cool on a wire rack.

Low fat Carob Zucchini Loaf

This season has provided us with a bumper crop of zucchini, to the point that it is keeping the dehydrator  busy and experimenting with new recipes high. The following low calorie (about 100 calories each), low fat, low sugar loaf is not only healthy but moist and tasty. I hope you like them as much as we do.



  • 1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup carob powder
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 whole banana, mashed
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk or other plant based milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla or almond extract
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Prepare mini loaf or muffin pans and set aside.
  3. Whisk flour, carob powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together.
  4. In another bowl, cream mashed banana with applesauce and sugar.
  5. Stir almond milk, vanilla and zucchini into the banana mixture until evenly combined.
  6. Add flour mix to the wet mix and stir until just combined.
  7. Spoon batter into prepared pans and bake for 18-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Granola Bars

We have both had huge hankering for sweets the past few weeks. I think it has something to do with the cold and how busy we have been the last month or two. Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on how you look at it neither of us tolerates highly processed or overly sweet treats. So finding a treat that would take care of the craving and still be fairly healthy took a bit of thinking. What I ended up makings were some granola bars. They turned out to be just the thing that was needed. I hope you enjoy them as well….



  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking power
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbs vanilla extract
  • 3 cups homemade granola


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Prepare a 9″ X 13″ pan.
  3. Melt the butter, stir in olive oil and brown sugar.
  4. Add the flour, baking powder and salt, stirring to combine.
  5. Add the eggs, vanilla ans granola.  The batter will be very thick.
  6. Scoop the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  7. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is golden brown, and the edges just begin to pull away from the sides of the pan.
  8. Remove for the oven and cool on a rack.
  9. Cut into small bars.

Menu: Week of January 26th

Woke up to a beautiful day, fresh sow on the ground, bright sunshine and deer and wild turkeys in the yard.  What a great day to spend in the kitchen preparing foods for the week.

This week we  will enjoy:


Some fresh baked breads – made a sprouted grain bread for this week.

Curried Red Lentil Soup with Chickpeas and Quinoa 500

Curried red lentil soup with chickpeas and quinoa – I found this lovely gluten-free vegan soup on the Zesty Cook blog.  I replaced the yogurt with cashew cram and the chicken broth with a nice vegetable stock.

lentil loaf

Lentil meatless loaf a favorite in my house — shows up on the table about once a month. I found this yummy gluten-free, vegan recipe on the Healthful Pursuit blog.

Vegetarian chili with winter squash and wild mushroom – Recipe to be posted soon.

banana cranberry cake

For a sweet treat Grain-free banana cranberry & lemon breakfast cake. This tasty little gluten-free cake provided the perfect balance between sweet and tart.


  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1 cup ripe mashed bananas (approximately 2-3 bananas)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup agave
  • 6 tsp Ener-G egg replacer (you can use 4 eggs if you prefer)
  • 8 tbs warm water
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a 8 inch square baking dish with oil of your choice. Set aside.
  2. Mix the egg replacer and warm water in a small bowl and set aside.
  3. In a medium sized bowl mix together the coconut flour, almond flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Mix together well with a fork to decrease any clumps.
  4. Add the vanilla and agave to the egg replacer and whisk well.
  5. Add mashed banana into your egg mixture and whisk together until well combined.
  6. Pour wet ingredients into your dry ingredients and stir together until it is mixed thoroughly.
  7. Add the melted coconut oil and stir once again until the batter is completely mixed together.
  8. Fold in the lemon zest and fresh cranberries into the batter. They should be evenly distributed throughout.
  9. Spoon the batter into a greased baking pan and spread it out evenly.
  10. Bake it for 40-45 minutes or until the top is golden brown and then center when pierced with a toothpick or a knife comes out cleanly.
  11. Remove from the oven and let it cool for 20 minutes or so.

Adapted from a recipe at So Lets Hang Out

Menu Week January 5th

We are just starting to recover from heavy snows and temperatures in the negative digits. The snows provided promises of lots of outdoor fun, the wonderful sunshine beckoned us outdoors, but the negative temperatures plus the wind chill of -25 degrees kept us in the house with the wood stove burning and the kitchen full of wonderful aromas.

Driveway after a quick plow

Driveway after a quick plow

A little fun with the dogs between shoveling activities

A little fun with the dogs between shoveling activities

View of the back yard out the kitchen window.

View of the back yard out the kitchen window.

Heavy snows are a bit much for the young trees. Will have to cut this one down in the spring.

Heavy snows are a bit much for the young trees. Will have to cut this one down in the spring.

The items that we cooked for this week are:

and for our sweet tooth I made a gluten-free blueberry crumble with some of last years blueberries.

Carob Dipped Macaroons

Over the past few weeks we have had a number of family and friends staying with us. Needless to say that between socializing and cleaning between visits there has not been time for much else. It was very nice to see so many people and also to spend a bit of time as a tourist showing visitors around, but it is also nice to have our home back. In celebration I made some carob dipped coconut macaroons for a sweet treat tonight. I used a recipe found on The Sweet Life blog as a base for the treat. Click on the blog name for the original recipe or try the one that I have listed below.



  • 3 cups shredded (unsweetened) coconut
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp coconut extract
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 tbsp of water

Chocolate Glaze

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup carob powder
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup


  1. Blend 1 1/2 cups of the shredded coconut in a food processor until coconut begins to clump together and form a rough paste (this will take a few moments).
  2. Add remaining coconut, 1/4 cup agave nectar, extracts, salt, and water. Blend until combined.
  3. Using a rounded tablespoon, scoop cookies onto a parchment-lined baking sheet, mounding the top of each macaroon. Place in freezer while making the carob glaze.
  4. Combine all the ingredients for carob glaze, stirring until smooth. Dip the bottom of each chilled macaroons into the carob and place it back onto the parchment paper. Drizzle the top with any remaining glaze. Return to freezer until the carob has set up.
  5. Allow to thaw for 10 minutes before serving. Store in refrigerator for up to 5 days.



Apple Harvest Pie

Our house guests from last week are on their way back to the west coast so we now have a bit of down time before our guest from Alaska arrives this coming Tuesday, so I decided to do a bit of cooking. Fortunately both apples and cranberries are in season, so a couple of things that I made are a harvest apple pie and some non-tomato ketchup (made with apples and cranberries among other ingredients) for the pantry.  The pie recipe is listed below — I didn’t include my pie crust recipe because everyone has their own favorite.

harvest apple pie


  • Pastry dough for a 9-inch single crust pie
  • 1 cup of organic raw sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp all-purpose gluten-free flour
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • Grated rind of 1 lemon
  • 5 large tart apples
  • 2 tbsp butter

Crumb topping

  • 1/2 cup organic brown sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour
  • 1/4 pound chilled butter


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  2. Line a 9 inch pie pan with the dough.
  3. In a large bowl stir the sugar, salt and flour together.
  4. Add the cranberries, raisins, and lemon rind.
  5. Peel, core, and slice the apples and toss them in the sugar mixture.
  6. Pile the filling into the lined pie pan an dot with the butter.
    harvest apple pie
  7. In a small bowl, mix the brown sugar and flour until blended.
  8. Rub the 1/4 pound of butter into the flour mixture with your hands until it resembles course bread crumbs.
  9. Spread the crumb topping evenly over the apple mixture.
  10. Bake the pie in a 425 degree oven for 10 minutes, and then lower the oven to 350 degrees and continue bake for another 30-40 minutes or until the apples are tender.

Kale Chips

Today I woke to temperatures that felt more like fall than summer. After two weeks in the 90s this morning registered 47 degrees. So before heading outside for some more gardening I decided to do a little cooking. I tore up some of the kale that I harvested yesterday and turned it into kale chips as a savory snack for the next few days.

It is such an easy, tasty and healthy recipe that I thought that I would share it with you.



  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch kale, torn
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast *
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Drizzle olive oil over the kale in a large bowl and sprinkle with the nutritional yeast and salt. Stir with your hands to coat kale.
  3. Spread kale onto baking sheets.
  4. Bake in preheated oven until kale begins to get slightly crisp; rotate racks and flip the chips, and continue baking until completely crisp, 45 to 60 minutes total.
  5. Make sure to keep an eye on them to make sure they don’t burn; if you notice certain chips ready much sooner than others, take them out.

* Nutritional values for nutritional yeast vary from one manufacturer to another. On average, 2 tablespoons provides 60 calories with 5 g of carbohydrates (of which 4 g is fiber). A serving also provides 9 g of protein and is a complete protein, providing all nine amino acids the human body cannot produce. It is also a source of selenium and potassium. While fortified and unfortified nutritional yeast both provide iron, the fortified yeast provides 20 percent of the recommended daily value, while unfortified yeast provides only 5 percent. Unfortified nutritional yeast provides from 35 to 100 percent of all of the B vitamins, except for B12. Fortified nutritional yeast adds 150 percent of vitamin B12 and 720 percent of riboflavin. (source:


Healthy Twist on an Old Favorite

Gluten-Free Rice Crispy Treats

These easy no-bake treats are free of gluten, dairy, corn, and soy. This version is one  of those wonderful comfort foods that with a few changes is now packed protein and fibers, and dramatically reduced in sugar and fat.

rice treats


1 1/4 cups gluten-free organic brown rice syrup
3/4 cup organic almond butter
2 tablespoons organic coconut oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
6 cups gluten-free crispy brown rice cereal (I use Nature’s Path Crispy Rice cereal — it is whole grain, low fat and wheat free)


  1. Line a baking pan with a piece of parchment paper that extends up the long sides. Set aside.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the brown rice syrup over medium heat, and stir until it begins to bubble a bit. Remove from heat and stir in the almond butter, coconut oil, vanilla and almond extract. As you stir the mixture, it should thicken and become glossy and elastic, much like caramel taffy.
  3. Pour the crispy rice cereal into a large heat-safe mixing bowl. Carefully pour in the warm syrup mixture, and using a silicone spatula or wooden spoon, gently stir to coat all the cereal.
  4. Scoop the coated cereal into the lined baking pan and spread evenly, gently smoothing out the top surface. Cover the pan with a sheet of plastic wrap or parchment paper.
  5. Pop the pan into the fridge to chill.
  6. When the bars have firmed to the touch, remove them from the pan, gripping the parchment edges and set them on a cutting board. Use a large sharp knife to score and cut the squares.
  7. Wrap and chill. Store in the fridge.

Source: Glutenfree Goddess

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