It’s showtime, e’rybody. It’s that time of year where the romantic gesture of cooking a scratch-made meal can only end one of two ways, canoodling or calling the fire department. Well, not only am I here to help get your canoodle on, but we’re going to make better choices to get to that canoodle. Plus, we’ll let the fire department handle a real emergency. And, if you’re flying solo, then you’ll have a killer dinner, lunch for tomorrow, and dessert all week long because #lovethyself. Boom. Continue reading “Valentine’s Day Beef Kabobs and Chocolate Decadence Cake”
Whether it’s Valentine’s Day or I’m Hangry for Chocolate Cake Day, this sugar-free, gluten-free, guilt-free cake will hit the spot! I used coconut flour to create this recipe, and I know there’s a lot of coconut flour recipe disasters out there. I promise; you’ll be able to truly enjoy this one!
Zero Calorie Coconut Oil Spray
2 Cups Truvia (best sugar-free option I’ve found)
2/3 Cup minus 1 TBS Coconut Flour (gluten-free)
3/4 Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Salt
1 1/4 Cup Almond Milk
1/2 Cup Canola Oil (can use melted coconut oil)
1 TBS Mexican Vanilla Extract
1 Cup Boiling Water
Preheat oven to 350°. Fill a saucepan with water, and bring the unsalted water to a boil on the stove. Spray a 13×9 inch glass dish with zero calorie coconut spray to avoid sticking. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, add Truvia. Remember to remove 1 TBS from the 2/3 Cup of coconut flour. Using a sieve, sift in coconut flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. You will have some bigger pieces from the coconut flour not make it through the sieve. It’s okay. Set aside. The coconut flour is very absorbent, and the balance between the coconut flour, eggs, and liquid is crucial in order for the cake to come out perfectly.
In a large bowl, whisk together the almond milk, eggs, canola oil, and vanilla extract until thoroughly combined.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk together to incorporate fully, making sure to get the bottom edges of the bowl. The combination will not be thick and will appear grainy.
Slowly add one cup of boiling water to the mixture and whisk together to incorporate. The batter will be very loose and watery. Add the batter to the 13×9 inch coated pan.
Bake at 350° for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean. Cool completely for at least 20 minutes. Although the cake may appear slightly wet, it will set up, much like a brownie.
Portion the 13×9 inch cake into 12 slices. Each slice is 138 calories. You read that right. So, enjoy every sugar-free, gluten-free, guilt-free bite!
Turkey Day down and Christmas to go! We’ve just tackled that one day of the year where we bake and cook nonstop for 48-72 hours to enjoy about 30 minutes of eating, and now we’re onto the holiday season of never-ending Christmas parties, holiday gatherings, and all things dessert! Now, whether you’re hosting a holiday party or want to bring something over to someone’s house, this is a quick and easy delicious dessert that involves two of my absolute favorite ingredients: cherries and spiced rum! Okay, three… and, chocolate!
This “no frills” recipe packs a solid punch of flavor without too much fuss, and you can make everything ahead of time, too. Also, it has one major shortcut that will save you tons of time and a few dishes to wash. I’m all about making things from scratch, and I’m also all about not having to wash a million dishes after I’m done. These tartlets meet the “scratch baking with minimal dishes to wash” criteria.
1 Package Fresh Cherries, halved and pitted
1/3 Cup Sugar or Truvia
1 TBS Mexican Vanilla Extract
1 tsp Chocolate Extract
1/2 Cup Spiced Rum
1 Cinnamon Stick
1 TBS All-Purpose Flour
24 Dollops Sweetened Whipped Cream
1 Small Bar of Dark Chocolate
1 Box Ready to Bake Pie Crust Top and Bottom (2 rolls) <—- major shortcut
Preheat your oven to 350°. Set aside two mini muffin tins.
Into a small saucepan and off the heat, add the halved and pitted fresh cherries, one cinnamon stick, and 1/3 cup of sugar or Truvia.
Add the vanilla extract, chocolate extract, and spiced rum to the cherry mixture.
Heat mixture on a medium-high stove until it starts to rapid boil, stirring frequently.
After approximately 10 minutes, the cherries will soften, and the rum will have cooked down to create a thin sauce.
Using a spoon, ladle a few teaspoons of sauce from the cherries into a small container, and add flour and stir briskly, avoiding any lumps. This creates a slurry or a thickening agent for the cherries. Add the slurry back to the cherry mixture and stir well. Reduce heat to medium-low and let thicken for another 10 minutes, stirring intermittently. Turn off heat after the 10 minutes and let cool completely in the saucepan.
While the cherries are cooling, unroll the two ready to bake pie crusts, and using a small glass or biscuit cutter, cut out 24 circles. Place them in the mini muffin tins to create tartlets.
Bake the tartlets off at 350° for about 12 – 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove the tartlets from the mini muffin tins, and set aside to cool. Once the tartlet shells and cherries have cooled, spoon some of the cherries into each of the tartlet shells.
Place a dollop of sweetened whipped cream atop each tartlet, and then shave the bar of dark chocolate over the tartlets using a Microplane.
Cooking the cherry mixture and baking off the tartlet shells can be done a day or two ahead of time. And, you can fancy up the tartlets by creating ribbons of chocolate over top, too. This is an amazingly decadent dessert that you can make in no time!
Whether you make them for the holiday party or if you keep them all to yourself to enjoy by the fireplace (you know I’m not judging), you will absolutely love these Chocolate Cherry Rum Spiced Tartlets!
Twenty years ago, I unexpectedly encountered the best part of my past and the greatest treasure I take with me always, the friendship of five very special individuals who attended the University of North Texas with me, and this past weekend, we had our first reunion with the meeting place being the phenomenal Marquee Grill located in Highland Park, Dallas, Texas.
After the initial laughter and hugs, we immersed ourselves in the menu and prepared for a symphony of flavors conducted at the hands of Chef Tre Wilcox, alumni of Bravo’s popular television series, Top Chef, Season 3. As our glasses clinked in the inaugural toast, it was like the conductor’s baton rapping on the music stand, calling our senses to attention, in preparation for a myriad of texture, color, playfulness, essence, aroma and sheer flavorful pleasure.