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Entries in Egg-free (107)


Red Velvet Chocolate Chip Muffins

It’s Labor Day Weekend. The official (but not really) end of summer.

A summer filled with memorable moments—some heartbreaking and some heartwarming.

Earthquakes, hurricanes, 5-day power outages, and monumental personal loss for many of my food blogger friends. Foodbloggers uniting in a way that helped bolster my faith in the goodness and charity of people. Many, many 8-second hugs.

There were many moments to cherish. The kid turned 21 and the beach house was filled with his twenty-something friends enjoying the surf, perfect weather and social scene. My husband and I spent time riding bikes, walking the beach, enjoying the sun and shore breezes.

Local travel took me to the Big Summer Potluck in rural Pennsylvania to spend a very cleansing weekend with friends—now more than just Twitter acquaintances—from across the country. I met up with some GF friends in Virginia and reacquainted myself with college buddies another weekend.

Doing all that and submerging myself in my day job consumed most of my waking minutes. So, needless to say, I neglected this blog and didn’t experiment as much as usual with cooking and baking. Some of the dishes I did come up with never made it here. No time for photos and writing up recipes and thinking about what I might write.

Truth be told I needed to focus on some other things so no regrets. But, I did miss the community that having a blog can bring so I hope to return to sharing recipes—and life—with all of you more regularly now that things are calming down.

Red Velvet Chocolate Chip Muffins

I’m enjoying my third season as a Community Supported Garden member. We get bags of freshly harvested organic vegetables every two weeks. It all comes from a spectacular little farm in western New Jersey.

We’ve been getting lots of beets—they’re a little on the small side. This week while the power was out as a result of Hurricane Irene I roasted the little babies on the grill. Scrubbed, wrapped in parchment, and then in foil they were roasted on the side with no flame with the grill cover closed. It took about as long as it takes in the oven—maybe 45-60 minutes. They were sweet and perfect. Some adorned my salad but I used a few for this recipe and was very pleased with how they turned out.

Now for the recipe…

Set the oven to 375 degrees. Prepare the muffin pan with liners. Makes about 12 cupcake-sized muffins.

Make a faux egg (flax gel) by whisking together:

1 tablespoon ground flax seeds
3 tablespoons warm water

In a large mixing bowl whisk together:

1 cup GF multi-blend flour (I tried out King Arthur’s GF Flour Blend)
1 cup blanched almond flour (Honeyville)
1/2 cups organic coconut or cane sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1½  teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules (like Starbucks Via) - optional

In a 2-cup measuring cup whisk together:

½ cup milk (unsweetened almond, hemp or other non-dairy alternative)
¾ cups beet/applesauce puree*
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
Faux flax egg prepared earlier
1/3 cup grapeseed or other vegetable oil

Pour about half the wet mixture into the mixed dry ingredients and give it a few turns with a spoon or silicone spatula. Add the rest of the liquid and stir until combined.

Add to the batter and mix in:

½ cup Enjoy Life chocolate mini chips

Spoon into the paper liners filling them about ¾ full. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool and enjoy.

*I pureed three smallish roasted beets for this recipe. It did not quite come to ¾ cups of puree so I made up the difference with applesauce. You will probably need 3 or 4 medium sized beets to get ¾ cup of puree.

And, if you want to check out some other beet or muffin recipes try these:


Ruby Red Beet Cupcakes from Melissa at Gluten-Free for Good (GF and CF)

Apple Banana Carrot (ABC) Muffins from Shirley at Gluten-Free Easily (GF)

Hearty Maple Cinnamon Muffins from Alisa at Alisa Cooks (GF, CF, EF, and Vegan)

Pink Breakfast Bowl from Ricki at Diet, Dessert and Dogs (GF, CF, EF, Vegan and Sugar-Free)

Carrot Mini Muffins from Lillian at Lillian’s Test Kitchen (GF and CF)

Beet and Orange Salad with Basil Vinaigrette from Alat at Tasty Eats at Home (GF, CF, EF, and Vegan)

Golden Beet, Persimmon and Pomegranate Salad from Tia at Glugle Gluten Free (GF, EF, and CF)

And a recipe that’s not GF yet very interesting and begging for someone to make it GF!:

Asparagus Muffins with Cashew Cream from Cara at Cara’s Cravings (CF, EF, Vegan and Sugar-Free)



Fresh Blueberry Pie with Lemon Thyme Crust

Blueberries! They’re in season from June through August. They’re delicious—succulent blue gems eaten fresh off the bush or incorporated into sweet things like blueberry pancakes, blueberry muffins or blueberry pie. They’re good for you—high in antioxidants and anti-inflammatories (which don’t diminish with freezing). These nutrients translate to improved cognition and cardiovascular health for those of us who love to eat blueberries. My freezer is now full with these little beauties!

This year’s summer vacation was one of those stay-at-home types. You know the kind—lounging, day trips, walking on the beach, spending time with each other and the kid, playing with the dogs. Somewhere mid-week my food meanderings landed me on a journey for local organic blueberries. It didn’t take long to locate Emery’s Organic Blueberry Farm in central New Jersey and convince my husband we needed to find this sweet little place. Right. Now.

My intention was not to drag the hubs out into the blueberry fields—I thought we’d just buy a flat of organic blueberries for me and maybe a pie for him. Once there the head lady in charge of the little market brought us outside and declared it was the best day of the year to pick. Other incoming blueberry pickers echoed her  sentiments and before we knew it we were riding in the back of a tractor on the road to harvesting fresh organic blueberries.

It was a spectacular day…sunny, breezy, warm. In no time we’d wandered well into the fields of bushes laden with berries in shades of muted lime green, light blue and that bruised dark purple color that signifies a ripe sweet blueberry. A gentle shake of each clump and ripe berries just fell into our buckets.

Voices of parents locating kids, women discussing the sizes and colors of the berries, and a mom expertly teaching her daughter how to pick the best berries wafted around us as we picked.

While we enjoyed the earthiness of the day we most definitely let our Type A personalities shine through. Everyone else jumped onto the tractor with a few quarts of blueberries. Not us—we had 20 pounds of the little beauties spilling over the tops of our buckets! OK by me. We’ll have organic blueberries tucked away in the freezer for use all fall and winter long.

So, on to blueberry pie. This is the first pie I’ve made since becoming gluten-free. Never really much of a piecrust maker in my previous life the blueberries demanded I try my hand at it—blueberry pie was begging to be  part of my kitchen this weekend. While the piecrust was not the stunning success I’d hoped for—the dough was very tender and wound up being more of a pressed-in affair than a tradtional rolled out crust—the pie turned out spectacular. Cutting the dough into star shapes for the top prettied it up a bit but the winning success was the taste and texture—bursts of sweet berry and a hint of delicate lemon thyme crust. Yep. That’s what I’m talking about.

Fresh Blueberry Pie with Lemon Thyme Crust

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.


In a medium bowl whisk together:

1 ¼ cups Authentic Foods Multi Blend gluten free flour
1 cup Honeyville blanched almond flour
1 tablespoon organic cane sugar
½ teaspoon salt

Mix in:

1 teaspoon minced lemon thyme
1 teaspoon lemon zest

Cut into small chunks and mix in with a pastry knife (or two forks) until largest pieces are a bit smaller than a pea:

8 tablespoons (one stick) Earth Balance vegan buttery sticks

Add in the liquids, one tablespoon at a time, mixing between each until all dry ingredients are incorporated and the dough can be gathered into a ball:

1 tablespoon cold lemon juice
5-6 tablespoons cold water (use only as much as is needed to form the dough)

Divide into two balls (one a little larger than the other), place back in the bowl and refrigerate for a least an hour.

Now for the tricky part—managing the dough. Because the dough is tender it’s not hard to roll out but getting it into the pie plate without crumbling is another story. (Next time I may choose to skip the rolling out the dough and instead press it evenly into the pie plate.)

Cut two pieces of parchment paper each about 16 to 18 inches long. Place one down, flour it lightly and place the larger of the two dough balls on top. Sprinkle the dough ball with more flour, lightly coating the entire piece, and place the second sheet of parchment on top.

Working quickly, gently roll out the dough between the two pieces of parchment until it’s about an 1/8 inch thick.  Remove the top piece of parchment, lightly flour the dough and gently spread it across the entire surface with your hands. Gently fold the crust in half using the end of the parchment paper to lift the dough over on itself. Repeat to fold into quarters. Lift the parchment up with the quartered dough and invert it over onto the pie plate with the point in the center of the plate. Remove the parchment and unfold the dough. If the dough breaks don’t be concerned…it presses together nicely with a little pressure.

Place the piecrust in the preheated oven for about 6-8 minutes—it will not be browned.

Roll out the second ball using the parchment method and cut out shapes using small decorative cookie cutters. These will be used to top the cake. (Place these back in the fridge until you’re ready to use.)


Clean, rinse and place in a large bowl:

6 cups fresh or frozen organic blueberries

Mix together in a separate bowl:

2/3 cup organic cane sugar
6 tablespoons tapioca flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon lemon juice

Gently toss the blueberries with the sugar mixture until well combined.

Place the blueberries is the partially cooked piecrust, top with the decorative piecrust shapes you cut out earlier, and sprinkle with a tablespoon of organic cane sugar.

Cover just the edges of the pie crust with strips of foil to avoid overbrowning of that area. Pop in the oven for 35-40 minutes until the berries are tender. Check halfway through to make sure the decorative pieces aren’t overbrowning—if they are you can tent the pie with a piece of foil.

Here’s a great pie crust making tutorial to check out if you’ve never made one before: All Recipes’ Making a Pie Crust, Step by Step.


Feast your eyes on some other delicious blueberry recipes:


Roasted Beets with Blueberry Almond Reduction from AndreAnna at Life as a Plate

Rhubarb Blueberry Sherbet from Melissa at Gluten-Free for Good

Lemon Blueberry Muffins from Sea at Book of Yum

Blueberry Banana Buckle from Shirley at GFE