Archive for August, 2012

Mock KFC Biscuits

First off let me say these biscuits are so heavenly delicious i couldn’t wait to share this recipe. I know it is supposed to be “what not to name the baby” and “why i do what not to name the baby” so I hope you can forgive me. I swear on those fronts I have some great stuff but for now back to my adaptation of a really good already gluten free recipe.

When i first began my journey to a gluten free flaky biscuit i started out with these, they are quick and pretty tasty. When i don’t have time to pre-freeze my non dairy butter for my Flaky Layers biscuits I make these. But they weren’t perfect. The minute they loose that hot from the oven so hot you’l nearly burn yourself temperature they get a bit rubbery. The butter makes them more yellow than real KFC biscuits and the use of buttermilk makes them far tangier than  the “real” glutened biscuits. Me being me, set out to fix these short comings especially the rubberiness. That was the biggest issue and the easiest to fix.

Any more than 1/2 tsp of xantham gum per cup of flour makes your baked good rubbery. More than that and they get slippery, more than that down right slimy but only in your mouth. Those deceitful little baked goods will look perfectly edible. Sigh…

Oh and I double the recipe. Doubled i get 12-15 biscuits.


1 c potato starch

1 1/2 c corn starch

2 Tbs baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

1 tsp xanthan gum

2 Tbs sugar

2/3 c shortening

1 c + 2-4 TBS non-dairy milk

Preheat oven to 375. line baking sheet with parchment paper

In a large mixing bowl, add all dry ingredients. Whisk together until well blended.

Add shortening. It does not have to be cold, room temperature is fine. cut in with pastry cutter or a fork. The result should resemble coarse crumbs.

Slowy add 1 c “milk”.  Continue adding milk up to 4 TBS until dough is very soft , sticky and holds together. This is a very wet dough.

Using very wet hands and spoon drop appx 1/4 c of dough onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Continue dropping mounds until all dough is used.

Bake for 10-12 minutes. remove from oven, flip biscuits and bake for an addition 5 min.


Chocolate cheese cake

Before we get started. This recipe has eggs.  I have no idea how to make this work egg free. I do not think it can. But some one please prove me wrong. 🙂 I am working on a no bake that tastes yummy and does not requires eggs once it is reproducible reliably, I will share.

special equipment 8 in springform pan. I use these.


1 recipe nut based cream cheese

2 Tbs baking cocoa

1/3 c sugar

1 c cartoned coconut milk

3 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla

2 tsp lemon juice

Crust ingredients

1 1/2 c gluten-free chocolate graham cracker crumbs. I now use a recipe from Nicole Hunn of Gluen-             free on a shoestring.

6-7 TBS melted non-dairy butter

pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees

First assemble your crust.

In a bowl combine crumbs and melted butter. Toss throughly. press into the bottom of an 8in springform pan. Do not bake.


Beat eggs until well mixed. add sugar. Continue beating on medium speed.  Add coconut milk. Continue beating for another 30 seconds or so. Now add nut based cream cheese. Beat until all ingredients are well mixed. Add lemon juice and vanilla. Mix for an additional minute.

The filling should be very liquid like a heavy cream and less like a batter. Separate 1/3 c of batter in a separate bowl. Add 2 TBS baking coco. stir until smooth.

Pour bulk of filling onto crust. Drizzle chocolatey mixture in an ever-increasing spiral over the top of the cheesecake. Once all chocolate mix has been poured take a fork and gently swirl through out.

Bake at 350 fo 40 minutes.

To avoid cracking. Turn the heat off and allow cheesecake to cool in the oven. once cooled place on counter for 30-40 min to cool. Separate sides of springform pan. If it seems to stick run a rubber spatula along the edge to gently separate from side of pan. Cool for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator.

I know what a creative name right?

It was said by someone here that you can not bake with nut based cream cheese. And up til that point all the various recipes I’d used for nu based cream cheese while baking had failed. they added wonderful moisture but ended up with a flat or barely risen product. Sometimes it wouldn’t hold together. some times my end result was flat and kind of grainy.  But I was not to be defeated. This recipe for nut based sour cream led me back to my “test” kitchen to try more variations on cream cheese and voila you have the fruits of my labor.

But you ask why did the previous nut based cream cheeses work? Why is this one different and most importantly does it work every time? will it work for me?

Why it failed. In any given recipe, when making a substitution you must understand the purpose the offending allergen serves, what properties it has, and what alternate best replaces them. The components of cream cheese are Protein.

In any baking recipe Protein provides structure. The structure allows it to hold its shape. it also allows for a lighter texture as the baked good now has the structure necessary to hold up to rising.

Cream cheese has sodium. Sodium is a requirement for leavening. Many years ago I was very anti-salt. I didn’t have it nor any seasonings contains salt in my home. But my pancakes fluffiness was always hit or miss. Then someone took the time to explain how important the 1/8 tsp salt in my pancakes was. The salt has a place in my home ever since and my baked goods (almost) always rise to the occasion.

And cream cheese hat fat a much higher fat content the just milk or cream. Fat is an emulsifier and a method of suspension. It evenly spreads and suspends the ingredients within a batter, when beaten it becomes light and fluffy add flour and it helps the thickening process. Fats can act as a barrier creating the layers required in puff pastry or these biscuits. And it can be a flavorful topping or dip. Fat and the proper amount and ratios of the correct type of fate are important.

Moisture. Cream cheese will add to the moisture content of your recipe. It is a wet ingredient. too much moisture and you baked time never dries out, it has a wet doughy center, not enough and it becomes dry crumbly and just won’t hold together.

In order to use a replacement cream cheese it has to have all of the above and be rather simple to make. If it is hard I am not doing it. I have enough hard stuff to do just being a mom. All of the other nut based recipe’s I’d tried were lacking one or more of the above in the correct ratio.

Now that that’s out of the way….on to cream “Cheese”.

I have only tested this with almonds and pecans, however, it should also work quite well with cashews.

I made my own almond meal by placing the almonds in the blender and grinding them up into a meal or powder. I have also made this using Trader Joe’s brand almond meal. They are interchangeable and premade meal save you a step.


1 c Almond meal

1/2 c cartoned unsweetened coconut milk

1/2 c neutral flavored oil I use canola or regular olive oil (extra virgin has much to strong a flavor)

1/4 scant tsp xanthum gum

1/8 tsp salt

If you don’t have an awesome high-powered blender ( I don’t) you made need to do this half a batch at a time.

Pour the coconut milk in the blender. Turn the blender on at medium high and add the almond meal. Add salt. Once thoroughly blended SLOWLY pour in the oil through the top of the blender. The mixture will begin to emulsify. Once all oil has been added, introduce the xantham gum. Continue blending for about 30 sec-1 min longer.  Stop blender and let mixture rest.

At this point you can use the mix immediately or refrigerate.

This blend works in every recipe I have tried and once refrigerated tastes yummy on a gluten-free bagel.

more baking science

Sorry about the delay in postings. I have been working like a mad woman at my day Job we’re talking almost 100 hours in the last pay period… and I went on vacation… and I still have to cook every item from scratch. ALL of those lovely excuses to say I am sorry for being gone. I need to write my recipes and I really need to share them via my blog. If I don’t I start fitting them into random conversations, commenting on other’s blogs, thinking about them at my desk, and generally being obsessive. LOL

SO I the next few days we will have a Chocolate Cheesecake recipe; gluten, dairy and soy free.

How to make Nut based cream cheese that will work in your baking!! woo hoo on that one.

“More allergen free products that make my kitchen run”

“What not to name the baby” and boy have i got some doosey’s.

As well as “Why I do what not to name the baby”…. it’s not about being mean, nasty or cruel.

So a busy week coming up for the blog. And again I apologize for being away. I hope you can forgive me.