This is my happy place. Carova Beach, Outer Banks, NC. Once a year I get to be here with the best company for two weeks of laughter, play, sun, salt, relaxation, sandy doggies and lots of good cooking. Oh, and it also involves my birthday, so cake and fancy drinks are always part of the shenanigans.
My 23rd birthday cake to celebrate this new year of life: a blueberry cornmeal cake with lemon curd – neufchâtel frosting. I thought up the flavor combination when blueberry season was just beginning and had been craving it ever since. So when the day came, I handed the special job over to my boyfriend and supervised carefully to make sure he made it exactly how I imagined :) He did great, topping it off with a decorative blueberry swirl. Thanks Forrest!
*Note: my birthday was in July; I am just now realizing I never got to posting this cake recipe which needs to be preserved forever and ever. And I’m reminiscing of those wonderful two weeks at the beach. Summer, don’t go so fast! Continue reading
This is my mom’s old fashioned apple cake. Sans the 2 ¼ cups of sugar. She made it earlier this season and we gobbled it up, oh yes… but no one can feel good about ingesting that much refined sugar. So I decided to do something about it.
In my version, winter squash puree replaces the shortening to keep it moist, sugar is reduced to just 1/3 cup, accompanied by erythritol—a natural (calorie-free) sweetener—and vanilla protein powder, whole wheat flour replaces the white, and an egg yolk is omitted to reduce cholesterol. *check my notes at the bottom for simple vegan substitutions.
It’s basically a balanced meal in itself. Squash = fiber and vitamins; Apples = more fiber and vitamins; Whole wheat flour = whole grains, more fiber; Eggs + milk + protein powder + nuts = PROTEIN! And that’s my excuse for eating a big ol’ slice for dinner ;) Try it, I dare you.
^Check out that original recipe….. got enough sugar?!
Autumn Apple Cake
- ½ cup pumpkin or winter squash puree
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar
- 1/3 cup erythritol*
- 1 t nectresse*
- ¼ t salt
- 1 egg + 3T egg whites, or 7 T egg whites
- 1 cup buttermilk (make your own by adding 1T vinegar to a cup measure, and fill the rest with milk)
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour
- ½ cup vanilla protein powder – mine is sweetened with stevia
- 2 t baking soda
- 2 t cinnamon
- 1 t ground ginger
- 4 cups apples, peeled & chopped fine Continue reading
It’s still 85 degrees here in Charleston and I’m craving fall. I just want to put on a cozy sweater and bake some pumpkin bread! So I kind of did anyway… :]
Mom’s birthday was the first day of fall this year and one of her favorite things is maple syrup.. quite fitting. After much debating about what would be easiest to send in the mail I settled on cake pops—little truffles of cake and frosting all smooshed together and dipped in glaze. YUM. I figured they were much more mail-friendly than cupcakes. And birthday cookies are just boring… Soo cake pops it was!
I wanted to incorporate as many warm and autumn-y flavors of possible, and I may have gone a little overboard :] The end result was a sweet potato-spice cake, which I baked, crumbled and mixed with maple-cream cheese frosting, formed into balls and dipped in cinnamon-maple glaze, and finally topped with some crushed pecans. I feel like I’m explaining my masterpiece on Cupcake Wars or something!
*I used this recipe for sweet potato cake, this for the maple cream cheese frosting, and this for the cinnamon-maple glaze.
‘Twas very long and intricate process, but the end result was fantastic, plus I got to enjoy tasting each element on its own. I managed to snap some photos before sending them off, because they were too cute and oozing with mapley goodness to let go undocumented.
So happy birthday mama, I hope the weather at home is more appropriate for these little sweet treats than it is here!
My original attempt to make “pops” failed because the glaze was too runny and wouldn’t harden on top. Oh well, my truffles are cuter :]
I’ve had this on my list of recipes to try for a long while, and now that I have an overabundance of blueberries and not enough mouths to force them in to, it seemed a good time to give it a go. This light, slightly sweet and wholesome coffee cake turned out lovely— just a touch of sweetness contrasts with the tart berries, the combination of corn meal and whole wheat lends a hearty texture, yet it’s still light and fluffy. I can’t wait to have this tomorrow morning with a big cup of coffee, some yogurt and more blueberries!
adapted from Eggless Cooking
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup stone ground white corn meal
¼ cup + 2 T Sugar (I actually think I could do with less)
3/4 t Baking Powder
1/4 t Baking Soda
¼ t salt
1/4 cup Unsweetened Applesauce
1/2 cup soy yogurt (I used regular Greek yogurt, which un-veganed it)
a little soymilk or water
2 T Vegetable Oil Spread, melted (Earth / Smart Balance)
1/2 T Apple Cider Vinegar
1 t Vanilla Extract
1/4 t Almond Extract
1 cup Blueberries, fresh if possible!!
1/2 cup Sliced Almonds (I omitted)
1 T Brown Sugar
1/4 t Ground Cinnamon