Blueberry Tartlets That Thrill!


Blueberries rule my universe right now; plentiful and sweet.  The flavor can’t be beat. My guy loves them and I have to agree; they are the tastiest and healthiest fruit for me. Haha! Seriously this is all true and I am in love with these tartlets. The crust to fruit ratio is perfect and I made them with a minimum of sugar as these ripe berries are already quite sweet. I got my fruit at Aldi’s for a great price; every grocery store has blueberries by the pint, often on sale. They are very good for your body; full of fiber, low in sugar, and full of other nutrients. They are especially you have blood sugar issues.  See http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/287710.php for more information.

Tips: Try not to bake in a hot kitchen; it makes it hard to roll out dough or even make the crumb mix. If it gets above 76 degrees you should turn on the air to keep your crust from acting weird.  I had to put mine in the freezer for a bit to help it hold the desired shape.

Don’t eat these tartlets fresh from the oven; they should be cooled to just warm or room temperature or even a bit chilled. They were perfect, just like a big pie only tiny each is one individual dessert.  You could certainly serve them with vanilla ice cream. We had them that way the other night and that was a treat indeed.

My apologies: these pictures were taken in a hurry; hot day and there was no spare time so they are looking rustic and crumbs dot the baking pan but frankly rustic tartlets are lovely. Be as tidy as fits your needs.

Angie’s GF Blueberry Crumb Tartlets: makes 6

Crust:

1 c plus 2 tbsp brown rice flour mix (at bottom of recipe)

2 Tbsp. sweet rice flour

1 Tbsp. granulated sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

¼ tsp salt

6 Tbsp. cold butter cut into 6 chunks

1 large egg

2 tsp fresh orange or lemon juice

You will need 6 flat bottom 4 inch tartlet pans if you make them all at once. My pans are 4 in an attached group. I baked 4 one day and 2 the next day

Mix dry ingredients in bowl of stand electric mixer.  Add butter and mix until crumbly and resembling coarse meal.  Add egg and juice.  Mix until it comes together into big chunks.  Shape into a ball with your hands. Put it on a crust sized piece of wax paper (14 x 14 inches more or less), flatten the crust ball some; put on top of it another piece of wax paper and chill it all in your fridge 15-20 minutes while you prepare the filling.

Filling:

2 1/3 cups fresh blueberries, place in medium bowl

Mix with:

6 Tbsp. sugar

2 Tbsp. quick tapioca

¼ tsp. cinnamon

Let stand while you prepare the crumb crust. This is important so the tapioca can soften and absorb some juices before baking. If you like things tart add a tsp or two of fresh lemon juice to the berries.

Tartlet construction: Break dough into a large ball and a small one. Roll out big ball in a pie bag or between the two sheets of wax paper, try to get the thickness even and somewhat thin, no thick middle! Peel off one side of paper and place in 4 set tartlet pan, centered.  Remove other slice of wax paper.  Cut into 4 pieces with a sharp knife. Mold the crust to fill each tartlet shape with no holes or thin spots. Do the same with the smaller ball and create 2 more tartlet crusts. If you only have one pan you can refrigerate the dough and make the two other tartlets later.  Fill each tartlet with fruit mixture to the top of the dough… after you have the crumb topping ready to go.

Crumb topping

Put all four ingredients in the same mixing bowl you made the bottom crust in and mix well with mixer paddle until crumbs form. If you let them go extra long you get big fat crumbs if you want that look and I did!

¾ c brown rice flour mix

½ c sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

1/3 c cold butter cut into six chunks

Sprinkle the top of each tartlet with crumb mix; use as much as you like.  I didn’t measure; just sprinkled until the fruit was barely visible through the crumbs. Up to your personal taste… It sinks partially into the fruit mixture and adds lots of sweetness and eye appeal.

Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 30-32 minutes until bubbly and the crumb crust is light brown.  Cool at least a half hour before serving at room temperature.  I think it is best served the same day you make it, or no more then 12 hours after baking for optimal flavor.  The crumbs will get soggy if too much time passes. Mine was still very good the next day; just not as great as when really fresh.

blueberry tartlet 2017

Note: if you find your bottom crust is not browning enough bake it empty at 375 degrees for 5-8 minutes before filling it with the fruit.  I have a bottom heat pizza style oven which gives me perfect pie crust so I don’t ever have pale pie crust. This is a big benefit of having this type of oven; it is a two oven range with a full sized lower oven.

Brown Rice Flour Mix (Same as King Arthur GF All purpose blend)
2 c brown rice flour

2/3 c potato starch – Not potato flour

1/3 c tapioca flour

Note: the crust and crumb recipe are out of Annalise Roberts cookbook, Gluten Free Baking Classics, Second Edition. Adaptation and filling recipe are mine.

Strawberry Shortcake – GF 2.3

Strawberry shortcake is a classic and no one turns down a slice of it at at a family gathering. I am not sure where I got the gf shortcake recipe; maybe my old Bette Hagman Gourmet Cookbook. I used to make shortcake a lot when I could still use all purpose flour but my gf biscuit version is pretty tasty. But there is one thing, you gotta make it with the best freaking strawberries you can find.  None of those ultra firm ones with whitish cores that are shipped in from far away.  You need juicy ripe scented red berries that are served over a gluten free short bread.  Yes, my local season is done but it can be done with other than local produce – the riper the better and it will taste great!

My mom always made a gorgeous version of strawberry shortcake. When I was a kid she would serve it as an entire meal.  I have done that and it is kinda cool.  Pre gluten free I generally made a huge oval biscuit with a smaller topping biscuit that I split off and buttered the split area before topping with berries and the smaller biscuit and topped with more ripe berries and a pillow of softly whipped heavy cream.  Oh berry perfection!  Now I bake it in two separate pans but the construction of the final product is the same otherwise.

Mom’s Strawberry Shortcake, GF2.3

Biscuit dough

1 cup white rice flour

2/3 cup potato starch flour

4 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

2 tbsp. sugar

½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. xanthan gum

6 tbsp cold butter

1 medium egg

2/3 cup buttermilk

2-3 tsp. sugar (optional)

2 tsp. soft butter

Other ingredients:

2 quarts ripe strawberries

½ cup sugar

2-3 tbsp. Karo light syrup

1 cup heavy whipping cream

½ tsp. real vanilla

2 tbs. powdered sugar (if you like your cream sweet)

Directions
Heat oven t0 400 degrees. Mix the dry ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Cut in the cold butter until it is small pebbles.  Add the egg and most of the buttermilk.  Mix with a spoon; add rest of buttermilk if you need it.  It should be a bit sticky, don’t over mix; just until dry is blended in.  Spray the inside of an eight inch cake pan and a 6 inch cake pan with cooking spray.  If you don’t have a small pan just use two 8 inch ones.  Pat ¾ of the dough into the 8 inch; make it about ¾ to 1 inch thick and try to smooth the top and side edges a bit.  Put the rest of the dough in the smaller pan and do the same smoothing.  Make that one ½ to ¾ inch thick.  Optional: take 2-3 tsp. of granulated sugar and sprinkle it over top of them. I think it gives a great finish to the shortcake. Bake them about 20 to 25 min; the smaller one should be done in 20 minutes; a golden light brown. Set on a cooling rack for a few minutes.

While it bakes, get the berries ready.  Hull 2 quarts of fresh ripe berries.  Place them in a glass mixing bowl; chop through them a few strokes with a sharp knife.  Add ½ cup sugar and about 2-3 tbsp. Karo light corn syrup to the berries.  Stir well and refrigerate until the shortcake is baked.  You could do this berry preparation up to two hours in advance.  No more or they will start to disintegrate.

Place the fairly hot bigger layer on a large platter, one big enough to hold the shortbread and still have room for a generous overflow of strawberries. Butter lightly if you wish.  Top with several big spoonfuls of berries.  Don’t worry if there is juice in the berry bowl; there should be; melted down sugar and karo syrup with berry juice will give you a delish berry liquid.  Top with the second smaller biscuit and then more berries.   Cut into chunks.  Top with freshly whipped cream; beat a cup of heavy whipping cream until it is softly whipped.  Add ½ tsp. vanilla and ¼ cup sugar if you wish it sweet.  Be sure to pour the berry juice over your shortcake; it soaks in and adds to the strawberry experience.  My dad liked to pour unbeaten cream over his shortcake. My mom usually set out the whipped cream, a jug of cream and some whole milk so you could chose how to finish off your personal shortcake.  I might add that I grew up on a farm so this was raw milk from grass pastured cows; fantastic cream equaling a freaking perfect shortcake topper.  We also grew our own berries; no chemical sprayed on them ever.’

shortcake, one serving

If there is any left over it makes a great breakfast the next morning!

Originally published in June 2014.

Coconut Cookies, Thin and Tasty

I was looking to make coconut cookies: had some sweetened flaked coconut leftover in the fridge and this baker confesses that homemade cookies are my personal crack!  Looking around the net I found several very similar versions of this recipe for regular flour and simply subbed in my favorite gf blend and added some xanthan gum. Worked great: I can now make gf coconut cookies.  The dough is easy to put together and I froze half for a couple weeks so I didn’t have too many cookies at one time. Half makes about 16 three inch wide cookies. If they are chilled they stay thicker and don’t spread much. They are okay like that but I prefer the thin spread out version.  Be sure to let them sit a few moments before moving to a cookie rack; the thinner they are the more fragile they are and that bit of cooling makes a big difference in their stability.  Enjoy!

Chewy GF Coconut Cookies

1/2 Cup butter, softened for creaming

1/2 Cup brown Sugar

1/2 Cup Sugar

1 Egg

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups flaked sweetened coconut

1 cup GF flour

½ tsp. xanthan gum

1/2 tsp. baking Soda

1/2 tsp. baking Powder

Pinch of Salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, xanthan gum, baking soda, baking powder and salt.  I used King Arthur’s basic gf blend. Guessing most major blends will work fine.

In a separate bowl, use a mixer (I did this with my stand mixer) to combine the butter, two sugars,  and once combined add the egg and vanilla. Once that is combined well, slowly add the flour mixture as it slowly is blending.

When the flour and egg batter are well mixed, add the flaked coconut.

Once that is combined, drop by teaspoonfuls onto parchment lined baking sheets about 2 inches apart (8 to a sheet) and bake for about 9-11 minutes or until browned.  I did some on my fancy non stick french made Silpat. Works okay but somehow I prefer the parchment for this cookie.

Let them cool 30-60 seconds on sheet and then move to a cooling rack and serve after five minutes when they are firmed up and holding together.  I froze half the dough and then made cookies weeks later. If the dough is cold it won’t spread so much; try to let it come to close to room temperature before scooping and baking.

They  kept several days in my cookie jar.  But the best texture is while they are freshly baked…

Camping Meals: Can be Done GF: Tasty and Easy

We were camping this past weekend. To some that means burgers or hotdogs. We did have beans and franks for lunch one day but I like to create and enjoy special meals and this is our tenth year together so I dry aged some shell steaks and froze them so they would thaw slowly in the icy cooler.  They were awesome cooked on the campfire grill and topped with mushroom slices that I sauted on the griddle of the camp stove. We baked a large Idaho potato to go with the steak and split it: I really can’t eat a whole big potato; too starchy.  camping PA Grand C 011 Baked a yam cut in half and wrapped in foil for a side the first night.  We had steamed snap peas both suppers as mine were ready to pick; just put in a ziplock and threw them in the cooler. I steamed them in a camping pan.  Simple. That first night we had boneless chicken thighs cooked on a double skewer; marinated first and brushed with Sweet Baby Ray Honey Barbeque Sauce.  So succulent and spicy good.

The steak was the second night and I made a rhubarb blueberry cobbler to top the meal off in style. I used my usual cobbler recipe and I refer you to it for the dry mix that will be enough for four cobblers. https://myworldwithoutwheat.wordpress.com/2017/06/06/rhubarb-cobbler-tender-and-tasty/

I pre-measured all the dry ingredients and seal in labeled ziplock baggies. I generally write all the wet ingredients on the baggie so I don’t forget anything.

 

 

 

Rhubarb Blueberry Cobbler

Fruit Filling

4 cups sliced rhubarb

1 cup blueberries

½ cup sugar –add more or less depending on sweet tooth

2 tbsp. tapioca flour

1/4 tsp cinnamon

Directions:

Pour the fruit in a oven safe sauce pan. Stir together the sugar, cinnamon and flour (I pack them at home by pouring into a baggie that I have pre-labeled with a sharpie marker) and mix into the fruit.  Cook on a not too hot camp stove or grill for 5-10 minutes, stir often, until it is thickened and hot.  Top with big blops of the cobbler topping.

Cobbler Topping

1 cup dry cobbler mix (in a pre-labeled ziplock baggie)

2 eggs

2 tbsp melted butter or canola oil

¼-1/3 cup milk/buttermilk

½ tsp. vanilla

Mix the wet ingredients in a medium mixing bowl with a whisk or big spoon. and then add the dry mix. Stir briefly: do not over-mix for best texture.  Use a big spoon to plop it right away on the hot fruit. If it is runny just pour it right over the hot fruit. Mine was runny this time but it tasted great although it took longer to bake.

Cover tightly and bake immediately on grill top for 25 minutes.  The top should be light brown and spring back when you poke it with your finger.  If it looks damp or squishy bake it 5 more minutes before checking. This time I double covered the pan with aluminum foil and put small hot coals on top to help the biscuit topping bake.

Let cool 5-7 minutes before serving as it will burn your mouth if you dig right in!

It was super good the next lunch eaten cold and I had the last of it that night when I was visiting my mom; we had some vanilla ice cream along side it warmed up; perfection!

Banana Custard Pie…in a Chocolate Crust…Luxury Made Easy

The ultimate perfect old school pie… so yummy and all you really need to make is some custard. I changed up my crust from a traditional flaky crust to a gf chocolate cookie crust that I bought at Wegmans. You can too and save the time you would have spent making a crust. No baking for me this time: no hot oven!

My mom used to make this pie when I was in my early adulthood; for some reason she never made it for us as little kids.  I used to cut up and set the banana rounds in the flaky baked pie shell for her.  She never used a chocolate crust so this is a slightly different take on this custard pie. The contrast of the rich custard, the crunchy chocolate crust and the fluffy cream with the delicate banana flavor is just so memorable.  And if you can make custard this pie is simple. I assume you could use a box pudding but I highly recommend this traditional stove top egg custard, straight out of Betty Crocker’s 1978 cookbook.

Angie’s Banana Cream Pie

 A chocolate ready-made crust

 

Filling:

½ to 2/3 cup sugar (I went with ½ cup and it was plenty sweet)

1/4 cup corn starch

½ tsp sea salt

3 cups whole milk or 2 percent, no lower fat than that

4 egg yolks beaten lightly

3 tbsp. butter cut into small cubes. (optional- skipped it this time)

2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

2 large bananas

Topping: 1 cup whipping cream, ¼ cup powdered sugar and ½ tsp. vanilla

Directions: Mix the dry ingredients in a 1 ½ qt sauce pan, Add the milk and stir constantly as it heats.  Once it reaches a boil time it for one minute. My secret trick is that if I don’t feel it was fully boiling when I started my minute; I add another minute to the process to be sure it is going to turn out thick. Stirring as it boils is mandatory; not the time to walk away from this process.  Then add 1/3 of the hot custard to the egg yolks as you stir, stir some more and return all to the pan, bring back to boil and time for one minute, yeap: stirring constantly.  Add the butter and stir as it melts, then the vanilla, stir.  Pour into a mixing bowl, cool five minutes and then put a film of plastic wrap on the top; press it down onto the custard. let cool a while more; maybe 30 minutes Chill in refrigerator at least an hour before using.

banana custard pie

banana custard pie 002

These slices were served a day after I made it.  Still yummy.  Forgive the paper plates and the poor quality picture. My mom’s room is not the best place for taking pix!

 

Cut peeled bananas into 1/2 inch rounds and cover the bottom of the pie crust with them close together.  Pour the custard over the sliced fruit and smooth the top.

Chill pie 1- 2 hours before slicing and serving cold topped with a big dollop of real whipped cream.

Whipped cream: Beat 1 cup cold whipping cream with an electric mixer until it holds soft peaks; add a quarter cup powdered sugar and ½ tsp. vanilla.  Do not beat any more, just stir in.

I think it is best served the same day you make it, or no more then 12 hours after assembly for optimal flavor.  The crust will get soggy if too much time passes. Mine was still very good the next day; just not as great a crust as when really fresh.  I like to top my slices of pie with extra rounds of banana to up the nanner flavor.  I liked the chocolate crust but I think I might go back to a homemade crust; either a flaky one or maybe one made with gf gingersnaps. Now that sounds like a winner!

Note: I froze my egg whites for later use in a cake. No wasting them, that’s for sure.

——————-

Pie filling from Betty Crocker Cook Book, 1978 Edition.

 

Rhubarb Cobbler – Tender and Tasty

Rhubarb….yes another yummy recipe using rhubarb. My spring mission: to convince you rhubarb haters to try one of these recipes.  This one is delicate in flavor with a fluffy yet satisfying cobbler topping and no sour ickiness as some say rhubarb can be.  It takes a bit less fruit than a pie and goes together in just a few minutes.  And it is gluten free for all of you who must avoid gluten which means wheat, rye or barley flours are a no-no in baking.

This recipe is the same basic one I posted about for peach cobbler in the past; it is modified from a muffin dry mix in Bette Hagman’s book, More from the Gluten-Free Gourmet and uses a flour mix that will give you 4 cups of the dry ingredients.  One cup will make an 8×8 pan of cobbler topping.  I keep the rest of my dry mix in the freezer and a pan of cobbler can be thrown together in less than 10 minutes plus baking time.  What a time saver this mix is! I make all sorts of cobblers with it.

I always get the fruit part cooking before putting the topping together so the fruit is hot and ready for the topping and can go right into the oven.

My mom and I enjoyed this on this past Sunday. She really loved the rhubarb flavor and the cobbler topping. Joe, who used to be quite skeptical about rhubarb until he had my rhubarb custard crumb pie, loves this dessert.  He always asks for some to take for lunch the next day!

rhubarb cobbler

Angie’s Rhubarb Cobbler

Dry Cobbler Mix – use one cup for this recipe and freeze the rest

2 ¼ cups white rice flour

½ cup potato starch (not potato flour!)

½ cup tapioca flour

1 tsp. baking soda

4 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp salt

1 tsp. xanthan gum

1/3 cup sugar

 

 

Fruit Filling

4 cups sliced rhubarb

½ tsp. almond extract

½-2/3 cup sugar –add more or less depending on how sweet you want it

2 tbsp. GF flour

1/4 tsp cinnamon

Directions:

Mix the fruit and almond extract in a sauce pan. Stir together the sugar, cinnamon and flour and mix into the fruit.  Cook on the stove top for 5-10 minutes until it is thickened and hot.  Pour into a buttered 8 inch square pan, top with big blobs of the cobbler topping.

Cobbler Topping

1 cup dry baking mix

2 eggs

2 tbsp melted butter or canola oil (both work fine)

1/3 cup milk/buttermilk (I skimp a tbsp off to keep it from being runny)

½ tsp. vanilla

Mix the wet ingredients and then add to the dry mix in a big bowl.   Mix briefly: do not over-mix for best texture.  Use a big spoon to plop it right away on the hot fruit.  Bake immediately as baking soda and powder can’t stand around waiting or they lose their umph!

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.  The top should be light brown and spring back when you poke it with your finger.  If it looks damp or squishy bake it 5 more minutes before cutting.

Let cool 5-7 minutes before serving as it will burn your mouth right out of the oven!  Some people love it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.  This tender rhubarb cobbler is perfect just on its own.

Reposted with minor changes from June 2015.

 

 

Rhubarb Sour Cream Pie

Rhubarb is a perfect choice for a spring pie.  This is easy to make even though it has several steps.  Sour cream rhubarb pie is different from any other rhubarb pie I make because the texture is light, almost fluffy. It has a touch of crumbs on the top; they are added after it bakes a while.  I think this adding of crumbs later help keep them from sinking into the raw pie and keeping it from becoming rather cake-like as my rhubarb custard pie turns out.  I never made this pie before so it was a new experience and everyone loved it! It is my adaption from a recipe off of a website called Mary/The Kitchen Paper. Keeper recipe!

The GF crust will work for any pie you wish and the GF crumb topping is q great pie topper.  I store any leftover crumb mixture in a sealed container in the fridge; keeps a few weeks.  What I am giving you is my mixture of a couple of recipes. I know it has several steps but each one is easy and you can use these crust and crumb recipes for other pies.

Angie’s GF Rhubarb Sour Cream Crumb Pie

Crust:

1 c plus 2 tbsp brown rice flour mix (recipe at bottom of recipe)

2 tbsp sweet rice flour

1 Tbsp. granulated sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

¼ tsp salt

6 Tbsp. cold butter cut into 6 chunks

1 large egg

2 tsp fresh orange or lemon juice

Spray 9 or 10 inch metal pie pan with cooking spray, dust with white rice flour.

Mix dry ingredients in bowl of stand electric mixer.  Add butter and mix until crumbly and resembling coarse meal.  Add egg and juice.  Mix until it comes together into big chunks.  Shape into a ball with your hands. Put it on a crust sized piece of wax paper (14 x 14 inches more or less), flatten the crust ball some; put on top of it another piece of wax paper and chill it all in your fridge 15-20 minutes while you chop the rhubarb into ½ inch chunks.

Filling:

5 to 6 cups (if you use the ten inch pie pan) cut up fresh rhubarb – place in medium bowl

Mix with

1 c sugar

3 tbsp. rice flour

½ tsp cinnamon

Roll out pie crust between the two sheets of wax paper, try to get the thickness even, no thick middle! Peel off one side of paper and place in pie pan, centered.  Remove other slice of wax paper.  Crimp edges all around.  Fill with dry rhubarb mix.

Topping: Pour evenly over this mixture:  3 eggs beaten lightly with 1 cup sour cream, and 1 tsp vanilla extract.  I did use light sour cream and it worked fine.

Place in 400 degree oven and bake 15 min, lower to 350 degrees and bake 30 minutes more.  Top with crumbs and bake 20-25 minutes until the crumbs are lightly browned.  Cool at least 2 hours before serving.

Crumb topping

Put all four ingredients in the same mixing bowl you made the bottom crust in and mix well with mixer paddle until crumbs form.

¾ c brown rice flour mix

½ c sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

1/3 c cold butter cut into six chunks

Sprinkle the top of the pie with crumb mix; use as much as you like.  I like about a cup of the mixture.  Up to your personal taste.

Brown Rice Flour Mix
2 c brown rice flour; 2/3 c potato starch; 1/3 c tapioca flour

Reposted from May 2016