Sunday, December 12, 2010

Eggless Nog

  • 1/4 cup raw, unsalted cashews (you could probably use blanched almonds if you are allergic to cashews.
  • 4 cups vanilla soymilk (or other milk-like beverage, coconut would probably be awesome)
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp rum flavoring
  • 1/4-1/2 cup dark brown sugar
Put cashews into a blender. Add nutmeg, cinnamon, vanilla extract, rum flavoring, dark brown sugar, and salt. Then pour enough vanilla soymilk to allow it to blend (at least a cup) and blend it until the cashews are completely dissolved into the drink. Decant it, pour in the rest of the quart and stir. Chill and serve topped with grated nutmeg. Or use as a coffee creamer. This was a hit with everyone at our family winter holiday gathering last year, from the vegan 5 year old to the omnivorous eggnog connoisseurs. It does mix well with alcohol, I like brandy or amaretto, but rum would work too.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Allergy Friendly Chocolate Cupcakes - gluten, corn, soy free

I thought I got a photo of these, but I don't seem to have. So have a shot of another set of cupcakes instead.

Trust me, these turned out tasty enough that the difference is academic. They have chocolate frosting though.

A note on ingredients: most commercial vanilla extracts use a corn alcohol as the solvent. Making your own extract is pretty painless, though, just slit open a couple of vanilla beans and soak them in alcohol (I've got a batch in brandy right now) and let them sit until the desired strength. Many corn-allergic folks aren't so sensitive that distilled alcohol can affect them. When in doubt, ask. Also, most powdered sugars contain corn starch. Wholesome Sweeteners brand does not. Check your labels. All vegan margarines contain either corn or soy derivatives,  so this recipe uses straight palm oil. 

  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 cup 'sticky' white rice flour
  • 1/4 cup garbanzo bean flour
  • 1/2 cup potato starch
  • 1/4 cup tapioca starch (not pearls)
  • 1 Tbs ground flaxseed
  • 1 cup water or cold coffee
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (see note above) or the seeds of one vanilla bean - save the exterior for making extract
  • 5 Tbsp neutral flavored liquid vegetable oil (canola, almond, safflower)
  • 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
Preheat oven to 350.
Whisk together dry ingredients, add wet ingredients and stir to combine. portion into lined cupcake pan. I got 15 cupcakes out of this. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Allow to cool completely.

  • 1/4 cup palm oil shortening
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or equivalent
  • 2-3 Tbs cocoa powder
  • 1 Tbs lemon juice (adds a cream cheese-y tang, I always add this to icing)
  • 1/2 tsp blackstrap molasses (optional - adds a buttery note)
  • 2 cups cornstarch-free powdered sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
Beat ingredients together to form a spreadable icing. Frost completely cooled cupcakes.