Monday, November 26, 2012

Snickerdoodle Blondie Brownie- Gluten-Free

21/3 cup rice flour or (2 2/3 cups all purpose flour for non-gluten)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt or (3/4 teaspoon Celtic salt)
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup butter, at room temperature
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 Tablespoon vanilla
2 Tablespoons white sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9 x 13 inch baking pan.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
3. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter, brown sugar, eggs and vanilla until smooth. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and beat until well blended.
4. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan. ( the mix will be sticky)
5. In a small bowl, combine the white sugar and cinnamon.
6. Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the batter in the baking pan.
7. Bake for 25 - 30 minutes or until the surface springs back when gently pressed. Remove from oven and let cool slightly on a wire rack. While still warm, cut into squares with a sharp knife.

This recipe was designed to use regular all purpose flour, but I converted it to be gluten-free.
Conversion: 1 cup of all-purpose flour = 7/8 cup rice flour.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Pumpkin Bread Pie

I couldn't get over how moist and delicious this was, that I had to share this recipe courtesy of Elana's Pantry. This is quick and easy to make, and although tasty by itself, you can add some primal and non-primal toppings to make it even tastier. To describe this dessert would be if pumpkin cake bars and pumpkin pie had a baby.

Ingredients for Pumpkin Bars:

1/2 cup pumpkin
1/2 cup agave nectar
2 eggs
1 cup blanched almond flour
1/4 teaspoon celtic salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves


With a hand mixer, combine pumpkin, agave, and eggs and mix for 2 minutes. Mix in dry ingredients into wet for a full minute, until well combined. Pour batter into a greased Pyrex pie pan 9x9. (for plain pumpkin bars pour mix into greased 8x8 Pyrex baking dish) Bake at 350 for 30 minutes (check with toothpick at 25 minutes). Serve naked or with the following:
 -This dessert does not rise, so it will on be as high as the wet mix when it is done baking.

Topping options:

-Sprinkle 1/4 chopped pecans and scatter on top of batter before bakign
-Top with cream cheese frosting.
-Top with pecans and cream cheese frosting (this tastes like a traditional pumpkin roll)
- Serve with whip cream

 Cream Cheese Frosting:  This makes enough to cover 2 Pumpkin Bread Pies (THIS RECIPE IS NOT PRIMAL!!)

In a bowl, with a mixer, mix 1 stick room temperature butter with 1 8 oz block of cream cheese. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Mix in 8 -10oz of powdered sugar. Mix until whipped.
When pumpkin bread pie is cooled spread a thin layer over the top.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Roasted Chicken


1 5-6 pound chicken
3 carrots
1 onion quartered 
3 celery sticks
1-2 lemons cut in half
5 whole garlic cloves
Olive oil for coating
*Seasoning Salt (see below for ingredients)
String to tie legs together

Preheat oven 350 degrees


In a large dutch oven or roasting pan, use carrots, celery and onion to create a bed to place chicken on. Place chicken breast side down. Stuff Chicken with lemon slices and whole garlic cloves. Tie legs together with string and tuck wings; this helps with even cooking. Coat chicken with a thin layer of Olive oil and salt blend. Flip chicken over so breast side is up. Coat chicken with a thin layer of Olive oil and salt blend. Place in oven for 45 minutes. Flip chicken over breast side down and continue to bake 45-55 minutes. At 45 minutes check chicken. Cut a thin slice into top of leg. If juices do not run clear continue to roast for 5-10 minutes. remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes before serving. This redistributes juices back into the meat.

*I buy a pre-made Spicy Italian seasoning salt from A.G. Ferrari Foods in Corte Madera's Town Center. However, if you are not a local you can make one yourself.

Sea Salt Blend
4 Tb. Sea Salt
1Tb. chopped rosemary
1 tsp. Sugar (optional)
2 tsp. Powdered garlic or 1 Tb. minced fresh garlic
Zest of 1 Lemon
Sprinkle of hot pepper flakes

Mix in bowl. Divide in two.

Do not discard juices and roasted veggies. I use them and the remaining bones from this chicken to make home-made stock.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Blue Barn- A New Neighborhood Deli Phenomenon

I wanted to share my recent visit to Blue Barn, located at Corte Madera's Town Center. I am not one to fill my blog with anything other than recipes and nutrition facts, however, I am so excited that this brand new neighborhood deli phenomenon has landed in Marin County, and couldn't help but share. 

Finally, Marin has a place to eat where people with or without diet and food restrictions can come and eat as one. Not only is Blue Barn committed to improving the way people eat, but they also pursue sustainable and organic ideals. These efforts allow them to partner with many local producers, and they use the harvest of Oak Hill Farm, a small, organic and family-run farm located in Sonoma, to draw inspiration for their tasty seasonal creations.

This pop-in, sit where you like hot spot, not only has a built-in menu of choices, but they also have a build-it yourself salad bar which allows you to pick from over 60 different toppings . The salad menu includes traditional favorites like Chinese Chicken salad and Caesar salad, but they also have innovative salad creations like the "Detox"which is full of veggies, fruits and grains and a 'master cleans' dressing, and the "Winter",  which comes with yummy seasonal roasted veggies. Their menu also has over 10 creative sandwiches that all look mouth watering (sadly I am not a bread eater, but my boyfriend did a little taste testing for himself, and loved his choice the Kickin' Chicken sandwich). I couldn't help but fixate on their fancy grilled cheese menu, but again I sadly won't be indulging in any of these tasty creations, but I will certainly live vicariously through everyone else.

My favorite part of my experience was building my own personalized salad. There is an easy breakdown of how to create my own, which includes a list of different types of toppings: raw, cooked, fruit, cheese, nuts and seeds, crunch, and protein fixings. You get to also choose your favorite type of greens, and with eleven types of dressings, you can try a different salad combination each time.  One of the great things about this place is when you fianlly create a "favorite" salad, Blue Barn will write down and laminate your ingredient card, and keep it on file in-house. This to me is one the most ingenious ideas. I can't tell you how many times I have tried to re-create my favorite combination, but my mind goes blank because I'm starving. Thanks to this gesture, I will always have access to my own salad favorites. I can't wait to go back and try a new round of toppings!

 Open 7-days a week 11am-8pm, you can enjoy Blue Barn's delicious menu everyday of the week.

Brooke Gray- General Manager/Partner
Barn: (415) 927-1104
335 Corte Madera Town Center

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds


-Scrape all pulp and seeds out of a pumpkin into a large bowl.( Seeds will vary, but this recipe was good for 3-4 cups of pumpkin seeds)
- Run cold water into the bowl. As the water fills up the bowl the pumpkin seeds will separate from the pulp, and cover the surface. Slowly scoop out the seeds and place into a clean bowl. Continue to do this trick until all seeds are removed. Once complete, rinse pumpkin seeds and drain until extra water is gone.
-Place on baking tray over night until extra moisture is gone. (do not pat with paper towels, the seeds will stick to it)
-Preheat oven to 300 degrees
- Roast seeds in a single layer on oiled baking sheet/sheets for 30 minutes to dry out.
- Scrape from pan
-Add spices: Toss the seeds with olive oil, salt and your choice of spices (see below). Return to the oven in single layer and bake until crisp and golden, about 20 more minutes. ( if seeds are still damp, continue to bake in 5-10 increments)


Sweet -Toss with cinnamon and sugar (do not use salt in step 4).
Spanish -Toss with smoked paprika; mix with slivered almonds after roasting.
Italian -Toss with grated Parmesan and dried oregano.
Barbecue -Toss with brown sugar, Chipotle chile powder and ground cumin.
Asian- Toss with Tamari or soy sauce, Sriracha, honey, and drizzle of sesame oil.
Bagel chips- Toss with garlic powder and garlic olive oil

Trick to perfect seasoning: Mix oil, salt and spices in a separate bowl first. Taste test. Add extra spices where needed. Then coat pumpkin seeds and lay out on baking sheet.