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Archive for the category “coconut flour”

Wheatless Pecan Pie

low carb pecan pie

Posting about a wheatless, sugar free pecan pie has been a long time coming. We have tried a number of variations, trying to get the texture and flavor of the pie just right. I officially think we have gotten so very very close that we are going to call it good. No, great! Pecan pies have a deep history in both mine and Big D’s histories. It begins with pecans. Harvesting pecans is a popular past time in the South, and in Texas. Yes, Texas and ‘the’ South are different. That is a whole other conversation/discussion/argument. For the here and now we are talking about a traditional holiday dessert. The challenge we faced was getting that smooth, gelatinous, caramel texture of the pie, while still having pecan halves floating atop the pie. You cannot imagine how challenging it is to accomplish without sugar, milk or flour. It is not impossible, which I must say, is proven below, but was definitely not a first-time feat. We very much enjoyed the pie, along with some pumpkin pie, after our feast of prime rib and mashed cauliflower. It was a simple, delicious meal. I hope you kept your holiday meal simple and focused on your people, because I know in my life that my people are most cherished.

Wheatless Pecan Pie

3/4 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup toasted pecan halves
3 large eggs
8 tablespoons chilled butter or coconut oil
2 tablespoons Stevia in the Raw granular
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

3 eggs, beaten
1 cup Stevia in the Raw granular
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup Walden Farms Pancake Syrup
2Tbsps chia seeds
1 1/2 cups toasted pecans (chopped or halves)

For the crust combine the coconut flour, 1/2 cup pecan halves, fat (either butter or coconut oil), Stevia in the Raw and salt in food processor and pulse until combined and pecans are finely chopped. Add the eggs and pulse until a dough is formed. Spread the dough evenly into the bottom and sides of a 9 1/2 inch tart or pie pan. For the filling beat the eggs with the Stevia in the Raw. Add the vanilla, butter and syrup, then add the pecans. Pour into the crust and bake at 350°F for about 45 minutes, but check after about 30 minutes in case it is cooking quickly. Let pie cool to room temperature before serving, or after it cools to room temperature, chill before serving.

Place the tart onto a sheet pan and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for approximately 45-50 minutes. Check the tart at 30-35 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.


Pancakes a la Coconut Flour

coconut flour pancakes

On weekend mornings we sometimes go to a restaurant for brunch. More often then not we end up making complicated orders to cut out starches and wheat, or rely solely on the a la carte menu to fit our diet. Inevitably the ordering process is interrupted while the server makes a trip back to the kitchen to confirm whether or not we can substitute a salad or vegetables for the hash browns and toast. Skimming through the majority of the menu items, most of which involve cakes, toasts, waffles and syrups, reminds me of Sunday mornings growing up. After returning home from church we would all change into our sweats and dad would set up the production line – he would make dozens of waffles, which we would eat on for a month out of the freezer, and enjoy hot, fresh ones immediately. Other days he would make pancakes, with a resulting mound of leftovers reaching a foot high or more. Those extras went into the freezer, too. There was always a bag of one or the other that could be pulled from and popped in the microwave for a quick meal anytime. I have avoided making waffles or pancakes since our shift to wheat free eating because of the obvious barriers of wheat and syrup. After pondering for a while and looking into a bunch of recipes, I think I came up with one that will fill in the sentimental weekend brunch gap. Thank you Carol over at Ditch the Wheat for the trial and error and the resulting great recipe (even though I did tweak it a bit). The cakes turned out great – when Big D and I bit into them we looked at each other, our eyes got wide and we shared our amazement at how similar they were to the pancakes of our childhood! Topped with some Kerry Gold Irish Butter and some Da Vinci sugar free syrup, they were extremely satisfying. Making them also brought back some fond memories of my dad, who passed away about two years ago and always spent happy times in the kitchen. We are definitely making these again, if for no other reason than because I promised Little B we would do so, after seeing her face was so sad when she learned they were all gone. Gotta stock up that freezer! And next weekend I am gonna show her how to eat them with my mom’s wonderful southern contribution slathered on top – peanut butter!

Pancakes a la Coconut Flour

2 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
Sprinkle of ground cinnamon
3 large eggs
1/4 cup coconut milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup coconut flour, sifted
1 tsp powdered stevita (or 1 Tbsp Stevia in the Raw)
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1/8 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp sea salt
Additional coconut oil or butter for cooking

Cream together the coconut oil and cinnamon. Add the eggs one at a time. Add coconut milk and vanilla. Mix until smooth. Add coconut flour and stevita. Mix until smooth. Lastly add cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Do not over mix the batter. Over mixing will result in the baking agents (cream of tartar & baking soda) not working. Use a ladle and pour small amount of batter into a crepe pan or large frying pan with butter or coconut oil on medium heat. Flip once the bottom is light brown and edges are set enough to flip without losing shape. The pancakes will not bubble as much as “regular” pancakes. Serve immediately with a drizzle of syrup. One batch makes about 8 pancakes, so double and triple as needed to feed your clan.

Coconut Macaroons

coconut macaroons

Big D is all about things coconut. Well, maybe not ALL things, like blue coconut sno cones, but definitely macaroons. I have discovered recently that my longstanding disregard for coconut was primarily based on exposure to sweetened strips of coconut. You know, the stuff in bags from the baking aisle of the store that is oft used for cookies and cakes? It is just too, pitchy and string for my taste. It always made me pucker. Our discovery of coconut flour as a low carb thickener and baking ingredient has changed my mind. Along with coconut oil I have found the coconut flour and unsweetened coconut meat are great conduits for baking – wheat free, high fiber, low carb tasty treats have come out of our kitchens over the past year. I am finally getting around to making this Big D favorite treat. These macaroons are a little too coconut-y for my taste but Big D and Little B scarfed them right down – almost the whole batch before lunch! Big D said that after they sat for a day and were chilled they had the chewy middle he loves about such macaroons, do double yay me. I looked through a bunch of recipes to figure out a good coconut/liquid ratio, but not sure there is a single source to credit, so thanks all you low carb macaroon makers out there! I plan to make a big batch right before our big move so we can nibble on them as we toodle across the country, or at least into the next state. By the way,
I promised credit to Litte B – I had a pile of macaroon for a picture, but Little B insisted on nestling each one carefully in mini muffin papers – after half an hour of manipulation she came up with the wonderful presentation you see above. Beautiful!

Coconut Macaroons

1 1/4 cup unsweetened minced coconut
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 cup granulated erythritol
2 egg whites
2 Tbsp heavy whipping cream
2 Tbsp water

In a medium sauce pan combine coconut, coconut oil, erythritol, cream and water. Stir over medium heat until erythritol is dissolved – if you use finely minced coconut the mixture should be rough and not soupy at all. Remove from heat and let cool for about twenty minutes, so the mixture won’t cook the egg whites. Preheat oven to 350F. Whisk egg whites until they hold shape, but stop before stiff peaks form. Fold egg whites into coconut mixture. With your hands gently form dough into balls no larger than 1″ in diameter. Place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper – one batch should make 16-20 macaroons. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until bottoms begin to brown and tops get brown edges. Let cool before removing from parchment. Store in refrigerator or room temperature in air tight container.

Fickle Coconut Flatbread

coconut flour flatbreadThe flatbread you see here is what I consider part one of an experiment. The goal is to find a quick, easy recipe to make tortilla-type rounds that are low carb and can hold stuff. I mean substantial stuff. Not a dainty piece of fish and a sprinkle of cheese, but a hefty strip or three of fajita meat along with guacamole, chimichurri, queso and sour cream. It is no small feat for a hearty flour tortilla to be able to contain such a pile, but for coconut flour recipe results that tend to be delicate, it is a bigger challenge. After doing a bit of research I came up with the following results. The recipe is a combination of the recipe found here and some of the input in the trailing comments connected to the recipe, so this is my best attempt at giving credit where due. The flatbread is useful for layering, or representing a polenta-type base, but not the ultimate tortilla I was looking for. I will keep this recipe handy, for it tastes really good and was useful and fit the quick and easy requirements I set out. A little fickle (aka delicate), but what is a good cooking experiment without a little fickle? I look forward to part two…

Fickle Coconut Flatbread

4 whole eggs
1/4 c coconut oil
2 pinches salt
1/2 c coconut flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
2/3 to 1/2 c coconut milk or water
1/2 – 3/4 cup butter or coconut oil for cooking

Combine the flour, oil, baking powder, salt and eggs in a food processor. process until a thick batter forms. Let sit until it thickens, about three minutes. Add enough liquid to make a somewhat loose batter. Pour 1/4 c of batter into a  well greased, well oiled frying pan over medium high heat. Cook on one side until the sides begin to brown and the middle starts to set, about three minutes. Gently flip the flatbread and cook for about three more minutes, until it is completely set.

Double Chocolate Cupcakes

dbl choco cupcakesThese cupcakes came from the mouth of my babe, Little B. As with our strawberry concoction from a while back, she got a baking hankering and we followed it through. Little chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting that don’t have any wheat or sugar. She is adamant about those two points, which meant we got to create a new recipe “with only really good tasting ingredients Mommy. Don’t forget they have to be really good” she tells me. Well, they are really good, and buttery and rich. Also a chance to crack eggs and spread frosting, which are always good things. Really good things.

Double Chocolate Cupcakes

6 eggs
½ cup butter, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
¼ cup coconut flour
½ cup golden flaxseed meal
¼ cup cocoa powder
1 tsp pure stevia powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 8 ounce block cream cheese, room temperature
½ cup butter, room temperature
½ tsp vanilla
¼ cup cocoa powder
½ cup granulated erythritol

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine eggs, butter and vanilla in a medium bowl. Whisk together until combined. In a separate bowl combine flour, meal, cocoa powder, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and stevia. Add dry ingredients to egg mixture and stir until well combined. Divide batter among a lined 12 regular sized or 24 mini muffin pan. Bake for 15 – 18 minutes until tops are firm. Remove from oven and let cool completely. For the frosting add the cheese, vanilla and butter in a medium bowl. Whisk until combined. Add cocoa and erythritol and continue whisking until combined. Chill a few minutes if it comes out thin. Spread frosting over cupcakes. Store cupcakes in the refrigerator until serving – mostly to keep the frosting firm, otherwise they can sit at room temperature.

Chocolate Stout Cake with Mint Frosting

Around here May Day (or Beltane for us) is a wonderful double celebration. On this day nine years ago Big D and I got married at sunset on a beach in Nassau, Bahamas. The golden light in the sky worked its magic to form a beautiful rainbow over the ocean, right in front of storm clouds, which were floating away after a brief afternoon shower. It was an unexpected symbol on the day of our joining I will never forget. Beltane is popular for Handfasting ceremonies, but we were past the year and a day temporary ‘contract’ of a Handfasting, so we dove right into getting fully hitched. We had a small, powerful group of friends and family with us on the beach that day, which makes the memories even more bittersweet as the years pass. The past nine years have been full of travel and adventure and appreciating the awesomeness of our world. Little B joined us about four years ago, which provided me a new perspective on the world as a mother. me and d great bearBeing a wife and mother has forced me to explore who I am and make sure my small corner of the world fits not only the people in my family, but me as well, in my ongoing quest to remain whole and well. I am so blessed and enriched because I joined forces with Big D. It has sometimes been a bumpy ride, but the bumps have made the whole ride a wondrous thing to behold. I wish for everyone such an experience with another person in their lifetime. Our little family has formed traditions that make for some slightly unconventional holidays during the year. We always celebrate Beltane and our Anniversary with food and drink, oftentimes with friends and family (when they are geographically convenient) and forever will include a rather obscure movie – The Wicker Man. Not the silly version with Nicholas Cage, but the original, released in 1973, with the usually cool and smooth Edward Woodward (aka The Equalizer). We don’t go so far in our celebration to (SPOILER) sacrifice a virgin, but we do dress up and decorate and dance, anticipating a late spring and summer full of fresh fruits, vegetables and everything being green. chocolate stout cakeSpeaking of green, maybe I should talk a bit about today’s recipe. We had a full house on St. Patrick’s Day this year. I was so busy posting about the Strawberry Chocolate Bacon Cake right before the Day and Shepherds Pie on the Day that I never got around to posting about the cake I made for dessert on the Day. This cake is not too sweet, which helps bring out the stout flavor, and the frosting gives it a balance for those who like sweeter sweets. It is very rich, which means not much is needed in a serving. The bright shade of frosting reminds me of spring and the nearing summer these days more than St. Patrick’s Day, so I thought it was a fitting post for our pending celebration incorporating stout, IPA, ale and other things decadent. Merry meet and have a blessed May Day! Slainté!

Chocolate Stout Cake with Mint Frosting

2/3 cup butter
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla
8 egg whites
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup stout (I suggest Guinness)
2 whole eggs
8 egg yolks
2 cups granulated sweetener or equivalent
1 tsp Celtic sea salt
1 cup coconut flour

8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
½ cup salted butter, softened
1 – 2 tsp mint extract
½ tsp vanilla
Green food coloring
1 cup sweetener or equivalent

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add vanilla and cocoa powder, then mix well. Remove from heat and let cool. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites and cream of tartar until stiff peaks form; set aside. In another bowl mix together stout, 2 whole eggs, 8 egg yolks, sweetener and salt. Slowly mix in cocoa mixture. Add coconut flour into batter and mix until it is very smooth. Fold egg whites into batter until combined. Pour batter into greased bundt pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool and gently remove from pan. While cake cools make the frosting. Whip together the cream cheese, butter, mint extract and vanilla. When the frosting is smooth gently fold in 3 – 5 drops of food coloring, until it is the desired shade of green. Add the sweetener and continue whipping until it is combined. Chill frosting until cake is cooled and ready. Frost cake with a thin layer all over – it is okay if there are bits of cake sticking out – makes it look even more minty and chocolate. Slice and serve.

Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Frosting

strawberry cupcakes frosted small

These little cakes came out beautifully imperfect. And Little B frosted every single one of them. We were long overdue making a batch of cupcakes, so I started by asking her what flavor she wanted. Strawberry. Then, I asked her what kind of frosting she wanted. Strawberry. I followed up by asking what she wanted to put on top. Strawberries. I saw a theme. So, guess what we got at the store? You guessed it! Strawberries. She loves pushing buttons on the blender and watching all the ingredients swirl and twirl around. The frosting is very similar to what I put on the birthday cake I made a while back, but without the icky whipped topping. Fortunately, after her taste testing between the frosting of each cupcake, there was still enough to finish the job. We got so involved with making sure there was strawberry in the cupcakes we forgot to keep some for on top! Oh well. And Tall P really liked them too! This is actually a big deal, because he claims to not like sweets. Yep. The guy who drinks sweet tea and eats box after box of fresh strawberries coated in sugar. He does not like sweet stuff. I don’t quite understand where his line between sweet and not are actually drawn. I think he has taste bud issues. Regardless, he ate up these little guys! Score one for me and Little B! They definitely taste like strawberry. Just a little nudge of sweetener made them sweet treats and the berry flavor really shines. They taste like summer.

Strawberry Cupcakes with Strawberry Frosting


1 pound strawberries, cored

1 Tbsp lime juice

1 tsp pure stevia powder

6 eggs

1 Tbsp vanilla

¾ cup coconut flour

¼ cup golden flax seed meal

1 Tbsp baking powder

½ tsp sea salt

Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting

8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature

½ cup salted butter, room temperature

½ cup granulated Splenda

2 Tbsp sugar free strawberry syrup

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a blender or food processor add the strawberries and lime juice. Blend until there are no large strawberries remaining. Add the Stevia powder and eggs. Blend again until combined. In a separate bowl combine the coconut flour, meal, baking powder and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and blend some more until combined. Let the batter sit for a few minutes – you will notice it thicken a bit. Pour batter into 24 lined regular sized muffin tins (or 12 regular muffin tins and 24 mini muffin tins). Bake for 20-25 minutes until set and browning. While the cupcakes are baking prepare the frosting. In a medium bowl combine the the cream cheese, butter and Splenda. In a small bowl combine the arrowroot powder and strawberry syrup. Mix until smooth and thick. Stir the syrup mixture with the cream cheese mixture until the color is evenly distributed. When cupcakes are cooled frost them. Store in the refrigerator.

Cornless Corndogs

cornless corndogs

These are sooooo easy! Whip up a batch of coconut flour ‘cornbread’, impale the cornbread muffins with pieces of hotdog and pop them in the oven. Little B really loves corndogs, but I don’t like giving her the funky ones found in the freezer section of the store or deep fried versions at fast food restaurants. I’m not saying that when I am surrounded by a carnival, and there is a severe lack of protein or low sugar options I am going to deprive her of one. I am just saying that when I have an opportunity to give her (and myself) a more nutritious version, I am going to take it. Regardless of how nutritious I try to go, they are still hotdogs. I do try to stick with Hebrew National or uncured versions, but it is still macerated meat. Oh well. Nothing is perfect. Some day I may even figure out how to make these on a stick, but for now, they are delectable muffins. They are baked, portable picnic fare that I personally dip in yellow mustard. Living on the edge. That’s me.

Cornless Cordogs

1 batch cornless cornbread
6 hotdogs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Make a batch of cornless cornbread batter. Divide it equally in a 12-count muffin tin. Cut each hot dog into four pieces. Stick two pieces of hotdog in each muffin, trying to keep them away from the edges. Bake for approximately 15 minutes, until the batter is cooked and the hotdog pieces are roasted. Let cool before removing from pan. Serve immediately with mustard.

King Cakelettes

king cakelettes_edited-1

Laissez les bon temp rouler! Let the good times roll! Mardi Gras is near and as always we are celebrating. We closely followed up defrocking the house of Yule and Christmas decorations with putting up green, gold and purple for Mardi Gras. After living in New Orleans a few years back I cannot help but get in the spirit of Mardi Gras. There is never a lull down there after Christmas – the frivolity of New Years quickly turns to the Mardi Gras celebrations. Parades begin in mid-January so there is no time to waste. Last year I did a king cake marathon, making sure everyone in the house had some for celebrating. I made a regular, yeasty, cinnamon-y king cake, including sharing of details about king cake history, followed by a gluten free version of the cake. They were both delectable and fun to make. This year Mardi Gras arrives during a time when we are highly sensitive to sugar, wheat and carbohydrates. What is a girl to do? Well, adapt. That is what she does. I used my experimenting with low carb muffins over the past year and incorporated my love of king cakes into these little treats. Although not the traditional ring with colored sugar, the result definitely has the right flavors and textures in play. I usually avoid making king cakes most of the year, but this time I may not. These things are stupendous and I doubt they will last us through Fat Tuesday. I really need them to, if for no other reason but to balance the green potency of chartreuse. Enjoy!

Low Carb King Cakelettes

6 eggs
4 Tbsp heavy cream or half and half
1 tsp vanilla

3 drops liquid stevia
½ tsp sea salt
2/3 cup coconut flour
¼ cup golden flaxseed meal
½ cup splenda
½ tsp baking powder
1 cup pecans, shelled

For the Filling
6 Tbsp butter, melted
¼ cup splenda
1 tsp cinnamon
½ cup pecans

For the Icing
1 Tbsp water
1 tsp lime or lemon juice
½ cup splenda
Green, yellow, red and blue (2 drops blue, 3 drops red for purple) food coloring (optional, if coloring icing instead of using colored sugar)

For Decorating
Purple, green and gold/yellow colored sugar or Splenda (or add color to the icing)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a baking pan spread out pecans in one layer. Bake in oven for about 5 minutes until they begin to brown. Prepare muffin pan with liners. In blender add wet ingredients and nuts together. Blend on low until nuts are broken up in small pieces. In separate bowl combine dry ingredients. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir just until combined. Divide batter among the 12 muffin cups. For the filling mix together butter, ¼ cup Splenda and cinnamon in a bowl. Grind into a powder the ½ cup pecans and combine with other filling ingredients. With a teaspoon drop some filling into the middle of each muffin. It will sink a bit and be covered by the muffin batter during the baking time. Bake for about 15 minutes until tops begin to brown. While the muffins are baking combine the water, juice and Splenda until smooth (make three different batches if coloring it instead of using colored sugar. A soon as the muffins come out of the oven drizzle the icing on top (drizzle all three colors on every muffin if using colored icing). Let cool for about ten minutes. If using colored sugar, sprinkle by alternating green, purple and yellow/gold*. Use all three colors on every muffin. Serve at room temperature or freeze and gently defrost in the microwave before serving.

*I planned on using colored Splenda for sprinkling, and got good information about coloring it here. My color to sweetener ratio did not turn out as well as it did for Millie, I think it was because I did not have enough coloring gel. It was definitely on its way, but I did not have time to go get more with an eager and waiting Little B, so I improvised. I added water and lemon juice to the colored sweetener and colored the icing and drizzled instead of sprinkled. Even though it did not work out this time, I am going to follow Millie’s coloring process in the future, for springtime is coming and more sprinkling opportunities are on the horizon!

Cornbread Without Corn

coconut corn bread_edited-1How do you get cornless cornbread? Don’t put corn in it! And aren’t they cute? Big D made some awesome chili the other day and of course cornbread goes great with chili. Alas, the wheat and corn in traditional cornbread aren’t the greatest foods in the world to consume. Over the holidays we tried some low carb, corn free versions of ‘corn’ bread to make stuffing. It was okay, but the flavor and texture was not as close as these tasty little muffins. We previously tried to copy cornbread texture with flaxseed meal which did a pretty good job, but I look forward to trying this version next time we make dressing. I cooked these up in a mini muffin pan and easily got 20 muffins out of one batch of batter and cooked them for only 20 minutes – one minute per muffin – go figure. They were a bit on the dry side, compared to actual cornbread I have made in the past, but we easily resolved that issue with a slather of butter on top. Poor us. I may also try to do some kind of ‘corn dog’ version for Little B with some sausages and a larger muffin pan. I will let you know how they turn out!

Cornbread Without Corn

2/3 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup butter
8 large eggs
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking powder

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Whisk together the coconut flour, salt, and baking powder. In another bowl, beat the eggs. Whisk in the melted butter. Add the coconut flour mixture to the egg/butter mixture and stir to combine until it forms a wet dough mixture. Divide the batter among 12 greased muffin tins or 20 mini muffin tins. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool before removing from pan, or burn your fingers by removing them immediately from the pan to split and melt butter on the halves before eating them too soon and burning your tongue.

Adapted from the recipe here.

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