Sunday, April 10, 2016

Very Cherry Pie

Tried making a cherry pie for the first time after having found nice tasting frozen, pitted, dark cherries at the local grocery. They've been a pleasant change to oatmeal in the morning. Normally cherry pie is too sweet or too gloppy but I found a combo of recipes that I wanted to try. This comes out not too sweet at all, and the crust is fun to eat in star form. I probably over mixed it but given the hint of coconut and the thick shapes it was a bit like shortbread. Yes those are little stars around big stars around a sweater vest!


  • 2 c flour
  • 1/2 c coconut flour (or substitute almond flour)
  • 1 c butter (2 sticks)
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t sugar
  • 6-10 T water, ice cold


  • 32 oz pitted frozen dark/sweet cherries
  • 8 oz mixed frozen berries (I used strawberries and raspberries)
  • 3 T sugar
  • 3 T lemon juice
  • 4 T tapioca flour (can sub cornstarch)
  • ~1 t butter
  1. Cut the butter into 1/2" cubes and freeze for 15-30 min.
  2. In a food processor, mix the flours, salt and sugar.
  3. Pulse the butter in just until lumpy.
  4. Add a 1/4 c water and pulse. Add in remaining water through spout until finely coarse. 
  5. Turn out into bowl and divide into 2 uneven pieces. Place each piece in saran wrap and flatten to disc. Refrigerate at least 30 min.
  6. For filling, thaw berries in large bowl.
  7. Add the sugar, juice and tapioca flour. Stir well. Let sit 15 minutes.
  8. Roll larger dough piece into pie plate. Smooth out edges.
  9. Fill with cherry mixture. Dot with butter.
  10. Roll the smaller dough piece and cut out shapes, placing on top of filling.
  11. Cover edges with foil. Place tray with parchment paper on lower rack.
  12. Bake at 325 for 40 minutes on middle rack. Remove foil and continue to bake until bubbly and crust is nicely browned. NOTE: This took well over 40 minutes for me at 350. It could be my oven runs low. I was out of patience waiting for it. A toothpick test showed some of the cherries were done and others were al dante. I was not too particular about having a perfect pie so a pie with bite is ok with me.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Craisin Chocolate Brandy Bread

Based on Cranberry Eggnog loaf from 300 best Canadian Bread Machine Recipes book. Used maple syrup instead of honey, replaced some of craisins with chocolate chips and used raspberry brandy. Tastes great day of - brandy is noticeable, nutmeg was not. Chips melted in and turned bread brown, craisins stayed bigger.

  • 3/4 c milk, room temp
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 egg
  • 2 T brandy
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/4 c maple syrup
  • 2 T butter, room temp
  • 2 3/4 c flour
  • 1.5 t nutmeg
  • 1 t yeast
  • 3/4 c craisins and chocolate chips
  1. Measure all ingredients except craisins and chips into bread machine. Set to Sweet Cycle, 1.5 pound loaf.
  2. Add sweets at beep signal.
  3. Let cool.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Peanut Butter Cocoa Cookies

Based on a recipe from a healthy cookbook. Didn't have whole wheat flour or wheat germ, and ran out of canola oil so used part vegetable oil that someone left in the house. They are only lightly sweet. A chunky pb might add a nice texture for next time. Just plopped dough for the first batch (top of picture) and rolled and fork flattened for second batch (bottom of picture).

  • 3/4 c natural peanut butter
  • 1/3 c canola oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 1/4 c water
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1/4 c cocoa
  • 1 c flour
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t cinnamon
  1. Combine pb and oil. Use electric mixer to combine well.
  2. Mix in egg.
  3. Add brown sugar and mix.
  4. Add water and vanilla. Mix again.
  5. Add cocoa and stir gently. Mix on low speed (to prevent cocoa spraying out).
  6. In separate bowl, combine flour, soda and cinnamon. Stir into wet ingredients.
  7. Spoon onto parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Optional: Roll lightly and flatten with fork.
  8. Bake at 350F for 10-12 minutes.
  9. Remove to cooling rack.