Apple Flognarde | Clafoutis

09 September

I love the ease of a French Clafoutis! 

Making a batter in a blender is my idea of quick and easy. So much like a Dutch Pancake, but a bit thicker with a bread pudding like consistency. Being gluten, and mostly grain free, I haven't attempted to make this dessert in some time. I was excited to find this recipe, using almond flour, on the Gourmand in the Kitchen web site, and am so pleased with how it turned out. I did make some changes.. whereas she uses pears, I used spicy marsala poached baby green apples, also.. I used regular milk and sugar. I guess not as healthy as it could've been, but it was sooo good! 

Interesting history on the Clafoutis dessert.. it is ONLY a clafoutis if baked with fresh Cherries. 
Also from different readings, traditional french chefs would NOT pit the cherry, saying there is more of a flavor infusion with the seed in. 

Seeing that I used seeded apples, my dessert is called a Flagnaurd.. but it is, as lovely just the same!  

Apple Flognarde (Clafoutis)

2 Tablespoons butter, for cast iron skillet
8-10 mini apples (*poached) 
1 cup milk
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 Tablespoon Fortified wine of choice.. I used spiced rum which I had on hand
1/4 cup brown or sugar 
1/2 cup almond flour 
¼ tsp of fine sea salt
¼ cup sliced almonds

Poached Apples Ingredients
8-10 "mini" apples
1 cup Marsala or Brandy
1/4 cup water
1/8 cup sugar
5-6 crushed allspice
5-6 cardamom pods crushed

Poached Apple Directions
1. Prepare apples by peeling them, but leaving the stem intact. Core the inside of the apple carefully from the bottom.

2. Add wine, water, sugar and spices to pot. Let liquid come to a boil, turn heat down to medium, cook till sugar is dissolved. Lower heat, carefully add apples, cook on low till apples are fork tender. *Keep an eye on the pot, as the liquid evaporates quickly if heat is too high. When apples are done, remove from liquid and set aside.

Flognarde Instructions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
1. Put a Tbsp. of butter in a 10-inch cast iron skillet, set aside. 
2. Prepare poached apples ahead.
3. Blend milk, eggs, vanilla, rum, sugar, almond flour, and salt in a blender until smooth, about 1 minute. The mixture will be thin, like crêpe batter.
4. Heat up butter in pre-heated oven in iron skillet till butter is melted and frothy. Around 7 minutes.
5. Put prepared apples in the buttered cast iron skillet. Pour batter over apples. Sprinkle sliced almonds over batter.
6. Bake in pre-heated oven until golden and set, about 35-40 minutes.
7. Let stand 10-15 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve warm or at room temperature.
8. Enjoy with a scoop of ice cream on top!! 

Coconut Milk

Berries and Cream Almond Shortbread Tart

21 August

This is the most simple of desserts and my favorite 'go to' recipe for a gluten free pastry shell as well! 
Add regular or dairy free strawberry ice cream and fresh berries with a frosty dash of powdered sugar, and you have an elegant dessert that will wow even your most discriminating gluten based dessert lovers! This crust is an almond shortbread crust recipe that I have used many times and absolutely LOVE!  It makes for a great afternoon tea cookie too. :)

Gluten Free Tart with Strawberry Ice Cream and Fresh Berries

Gluten Free Almond Shortbread Crust
1.5 Quarts Coconut Milk Dairy-Free Frozen Dessert
 or regular Strawberry Ice Cream 
2 Pints 2 varieties of Fresh Berries (cleaned and dried)
Powdered Sugar for dusting top
Tart Pan

Gluten Free Almond Shortbread Crust
1/2 cup cold butter, room temperature
1/8 cup granulated white sugar
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2/3 cup fine almond flour (meal)
1/3 cup “gluten free” *all purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt

For Shortbread Crust

Pre-Heat the oven to 300 degrees. Pulse almond flour with sugar in a food processor, add cornstarch, gluten free flour and salt. Pulse till well combined. Add butter and vanilla, mix just enough for the dough to start gathering together. Lightly butter the bottom of a tart pan or a cheesecake pan and up the sides a quarter of an inch. Press the shortbread mixture on the bottom. Pierce with a fork. Bake the crust in the pre-heated oven for 25 to 30 minutes. (till golden)

Have ice cream ready at a soft stage but not melted. When tart shell is cool, fill with ice cream, blending with swirls. Put back in freezer for 20 minutes. When ice cream is firm, take out of freezer and top with fresh fruit and dust with powdered sugar. It's ready and yummy to enjoy at this point! 


Gluten Free

Roasted Sausage and Potatoes

18 August

This recipe contains simple ingredients that when prepared together with the balsamic, herbs and olive oil have a fragrant aroma that's out of this world! Comfort food that can be enjoyed by all!

Roasted Italian Sausage, Carrots & Potatoes

2 pkgs. Sausage of choice cut in quarters
4 large russett potatoes cut into quarters
1/2 lb. Asparagus cut in 2-3 inch lengths (discard the woody ends)
1 pkg. Mushrooms, Crimini or Button cleaned and cut in half
3/4 cups spanish or kalamata olives (not canned)
6 sliced carrots
5 leaves fresh basil chiffonade (pronounced: shee foh nahd)
2 fresh sprigs oregano
1 yellow onion sliced
2 cloves chopped garlic finely chopped
1/4 cup Balsamic vinegar (*good quality very important)
Extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. fresh ground pepper
1 tsp. salt

Pre-heat oven to 400°

Drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large roasting pan.
Layer all ingredients into the LARGE roasting pan. Drizzle around two or more tablespoons of olive oil on top. Add ¼ cup of balsamic vinegar, salt and freshly ground pepper. Mix well.

Cook covered for 1/2 an hour. Remove lid and turn meat and vegetables. Continue cooking without lid and turn meat and vegetables frequently drizzling more balsamic vinegar and a little more olive oil.. so it doesn't get dried out (but also not to drench).
Cooking time will be approximately an hour and a half.
Veggies should be soft and sausage cooked through.