Saturday, April 8, 2017

Gluten Free Hot Cross Buns

Eating gluten free is not a life style choice in our house.  The tiniest trace of gluten makes my husband very sick.  I try to eat gluten free as much as possible because I have arthritis and feel better when I eat this way.  Over the last few years I've got to grips with gluten free baking except for making bread.  I've tried a few times with limited success.  

But today I made these gluten free hot cross buns because it is that time of year and I had a recipe I wanted to try.  


Gluten free breads are usually quite disappointing but these are wonderful.  They have a great texture and taste of warm spices and raisins.  Best of all, each bite feels like proper bread in your mouth.  They aren't even hard to make but they do take some time.  


As with all gluten free bread doughs the actual dough is very wet but I was easily able to shape these with some extra flour on my board and hands.  They took about an hour and a half to double in size and they smelled incredible as they were baking, yeasty and spicy.  


The recipe called for grated lemon zest and grated orange zest but I only had lemons.  This is a Meyer lemon from my garden.  These are a cross between a lemon and those little oranges so the flavor was perfect for this recipe.  I also switched out currants for golden raisins and coconut sugar for regular sugar because those are things I had in my cupboard.


The recipe can be found here on the Gluten Free On A Shoestring blog.  It doesn't require any strange ingredients and I used my own flour blend made from brown rice flour, oat flour, white rice flour, potato starch and tapioca starch.  We ate some with a cup of tea, I've stored some for tomorrow and put a couple in the freezer to see how they fare.  One thing is for sure, they won't last long!












Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Spring

It's been a long time since I've written because life is busy just now.  Then it was Winter and now it is Spring already and my allergies are in full bloom.  I picked the flowers below from my garden yesterday.  Everything is green, flowering, pretty and laden with pollen. 


I've been working hard on custom orders for my Etsy shop and I am teaching a costume design class again this year.  Here is the newest pincushion in my shop.  

I was inspired by the idea of an impossible stack of pretty pastel macarons on a white tea plate with some fresh flowers for a garnish.  These colors feel perfect for the season. The pincushion top is navy blue which makes all these lovely pastel colors really pop.  




Lots of french knots make up the special filling for these macarons.  I used a variegated thread when I had one which was the right color.  



Around the side of the pincushion, I embroidered "Oh la la".  My french grandmother used to say this frequently and we always knew what she meant by her tone.  Usually there were many more "la la's" plus accompanying hand gestures and the classic Gallic shrug!  

I'm really enjoying these colors together.  I kept one of these finished pincushions out on my work table for a few days so I could enjoy looking at it but it is now back in the box to keep it safe and clean.  



Here are some more garden flowers on my mantel, safely out of reach of my flower-eating cat!