Category Archives: Baking

SRC: Fearless Homemaker’s Chocolate Almond Pear Tart

Fearless Homemake Chocolate Almond Pear Tart-2 For October’s Secret Recipe Club, I was paired with Amy of Fearless Homemaker. Amy lives in Nashville, has a super cute daughter and tons of cute aprons!

Amy has TONS of delicious recipes like Bacon-Wrapped Manchego + Mango Chutney-Stuffed Dates, Brussel Sprouts with Pancetta and GarlicBete Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake)Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bars and Chocolate Avocado Pudding.

I also made her One Pot Tomato Basil Chicken Pasta but didn’t have the opportunity to take photos, so I also made her Chocolate Almond Pear Tart.

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The tart turned out really well and in my not-so humble opinion, is a perfect fall dessert! Mr. Bean kept commenting how good it smelled while I was making it and while it was baking and the end product definitely didn’t disappoint! It was super tasty and had a perfect light texture!

Since it’s naturally gluten free, I only made a few modifications. I used almond flour instead of grinding whole blanched almonds and reduced the amount of sugar to 2/3 c. from 3/4c.

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Gluten Free Chocolate Almond Pear Tart

Scant 1 c. ofAlmond Meal/Flour
2/3 c. sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 c. dairy free margarine (or butter) + extra for pan
1 /3 c. cocoa powder
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
2 pears
Lemon Juice
2 tbsp. Apple Jelly

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9in removable bottom tart pan with margarine.
  2. In the bowl of a mixer, mix together the almond flour and sugar.
  3. Add eggs, margarine, cocoa powder and vanilla extract and beat until smooth.
  4. Scrape into tart into pan and smooth out.
  5. Peel pears and cut into 12 pieces. Rub with lemon juice to prevent discolouration.
  6. Arrange pear slices on chocolate mixture, so they slightly overlap. Don’t press in.
  7. Place on baking sheet and cook for 45-50 minutes until tart is puffy and a toothpick inserted into the centre of the chocolate mixture comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Let cool completely.
  8. Heat jelly in microwave or stove until liquified. Gently brush pears with jelly. Let set for at least 20 minutes.
  9. Remove tart from pan and serve.
  10. Enjoy!

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What is your favourite non-pumpkin fall dessert?


Filed under Baking

Gluten Free Peach Pastry

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This is one of the recipes that I can’t believe that I haven’t shared as it’s been a summer staple and favourite in my family growing up. My mom would peel the peaches and assemble the pastry as we all waited in eager anticipation of what was coming. Needless to say that peach pastry never lasted long in our house.

It was only until Mr Bean made a comment that I realized not everyone peeled the skin off the peaches before eating them ever. Now I rarely do so – many for convenience, but it’s definitely worth the extra time for this recipe!

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It’s a fairly simple and forgiving recipe: create a shortbread crust, put halved peaches on it, bake it, pour the sour cream custard around peaches and bake some more.

The original recipe was made with sour cream and butter, but I used goat yoghurt and goat butter to make it more friendly towards me. I know in the past I have used dairy free margarine for the crust and I imagine that unsweetened dairy free greek style yoghurt would work to make it dairy free. I don’t think that the egg can be replaced and have a similar texture.

You could use canned peaches if desired, but bake the crust by itself first. Adjust sugar levels depending on whether peaches are sweetened or not.

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Gluten and Cow Dairy Free Peach Pastry

1 c. Gluten Free Flour Blend (I used Bob’s Red Mill All Purpose GF Flour)
1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
1/4 c. goats butter (or regular butter or butter substitute)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. baking powder
2 tbsp. sugar

3/4 c. goat yoghurt (original recipe calls for sour cream)
1 tsp. lemon juice (don’t add if using sour cream)
1 egg, beaten
<1/4 c. sugar

5 peaches, skinned and halved (You’ll only need 4 1/2 peaches)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. sugar (optional)

  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Mix flour, xathan gum, salt, baking powder and sugar in a bowl. Cut in butter using a pastry blender or your hands.
  3. Press into a 8″ x 8″ or 9″ x 9″ pan. Arrange 9 peach halves on top of pastry. Sprinkle on cinnamon and sugar.
  4. Bake pastry and peaches in oven for 15 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, mix together the yoghurt, lemon juice, egg and sugar.
  6. Remove pan from oven and pour yoghurt mixture around the peach halves.
  7. Return to oven and bake for 30 min or until the yoghurt mixture is starting to brown and crack slightly.
  8. Cool before serving.
  9. Enjoy!

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Do you peel peaches before eating them?


Filed under Baking

SRC: Baking and Creating with Avril’s Zucchini Cornbread

Baking and Creating with Avril Zucchini Cornbread-3For November’s Secret Recipe Club, I was paired with Avril of Baking and Creating with Avril. Avril is a pro-star baker, with tons of delicious recipes like this Hummingbird Bundt Cake, these Apple Crumble Muffins, and even a cake with Cauliflower in it!

With the help of Mr. Bean, I ended up choosing to make her zucchini cornbread as we didn’t want something that was sugar-tastic and it was definitely delicious!

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As expected, I did make a few changes: I made it gluten free, dairy free by substituting almond milk for the buttermilk and olive oil & more almond milk for the melted and cooled butter. I also reduced the sugar to 1/4 c. and used salt to help dehydrate the zucchini  instead of sugar.) Even with the modifications, it had an excellent texture, had a good amount of sweetness and was nice and moist.

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Gluten, Dairy and Soy Free Zucchini Cornbread

1/3 c. each of brown rice, millet and sorghum flours (or 1 c. of any GF flour – if you can have gluten, use 1 1/2 c. flour and omit the xathan gum)
1/2 c. tapioca starch
1 tsp. xathan gum
3/4 c. cornmeal1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt + 1 tsp salt
1 medium zucchini
1/3 c. olive oil
2/3 c. almond milk (or other dairy free milk)
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
2 eggs

  1. Half an hour before you want to make your cornbread, grate the zucchini, sprinkle it with 1 tsp salt and place in a dish towl lined strainer or seive. After 1/2 hour (or more), squeeze out excess water from zucchini. Set aside.
  2. Preheat your oven to 350F and grease a 9 x 5″ pan. (I used a 6″ cast iron skillet & 4 out of 6 large muffin tins.) If your pan(s) are metal, place in the oven while it’s preheating)
  3. In a measuring cup, mix together the almond milk and the apple cider vinegar. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together flours, xathan gum, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, 1/2 tsp. salt and sugar.
  5. In a separate bowl, whisk together the olive oil, milk mixture and eggs. Mix in the grated grated zucchini.
  6. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix with a spatula until all the flour is incorporated. Add more almond milk if required.
  7. Remove the pan from the oven (careful, it’s hot!) and pour the batter into it.
  8. Return to the oven and bake for ~18 min (for muffins), ~30 – 35 min (for 6″ cast iron skillet) or ~50 minutes (for the loaf pan) or until a toothpick inserted comes out dry.
  9. Allow to cool slightly before serving.
  10. Enjoy!

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Please check out the rest of Group D’s recipes by clicking below!


Filed under Baking

SRC: Troyer’s Loving Life’s Fruit Crisp and Refreshing Strawberry Watermelon Drink

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For August’s Secret Recipe Club, I was paired with Kirsten of Troyer’s Loving Life. Kirsten is a stay at home mom who lives in Washington State with her husband and two daughters. She shares stories, moments and recipes from her life and journey as a daughter of the Most High King.

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She has tons of delicious recipes – even including some gluten free ones! The following recipes caught my eye – creamy avocado dressing, Vegan peanut butter cups, Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps and Fusilli with Sausage, Zucchini and Cheese. When I was on holidays, we needed to bring a dessert to a dinner party, so I made a variation of Pioneer Woman’s Peach Crisp and it was a success! I was also feeling really ambitious, so on a hot day I made her Strawberry Watermelon Drink, which was super refreshing!

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I did make a few modifications to the crisp to make it more “me friendly:” made it gluten and dairy free, didn’t add the maple cream sauce (although I’m sure that would be absolutely heavenly), reduced the sugar and used the fruit I had on hand. We served it with coconut ice cream and it was delicious! Definitely a keeper!


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Gluten Free Vegan Peach Blackberry and Blueberry Crisp

3/4 c. Gluten free flour blend (I used Bob Red Mill)
1/4 c. almond meal (could use more flour)
1/4 c. gluten free oats
1/2 c. dairy free margarine (or other fat – coconut oil would probably work as well)
1/3 c. packed brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
Dash of Allspice or Nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
Juice and Zest of half a lemon
2 tbsp. maple syrup
5 – 6 c. of fruit (I sort of eye-balled it and used two sliced peaches, ~2 c. of fresh blueberries and ~3 c. of fresh blackberries. I didn’t skin my peaches, but if you want to, Kirsten has really good directions with her recipe.)

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, almond meal, oats, sugar, cinnamon, allspice and Salt.
  3. Cut in margarine using a fork or a pastry blender (or go really old school and use your fingers, like me) until it is a moist, coarse meal.
  4. In a separate bowl, mix together fruit, lemon zest and maple syrup. Pour into a 8 x 8″ pan. (I also put some into muffin cups so that I would have some available to take photos of in case nothing was left over after the dinner party.)
  5. Sprinkle topping over fruit and press down lightly.
  6. Cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes.
  7. Remove foil and bake for another 30 – 45 minutes until the topping is golden brown and the fruit is bubbly. (The muffin tins took about 35 minutes total)
  8. Let cool slightly before serving warm with the maple cream sauce or ice cream.
  9. Enjoy!

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Strawberry Watermelon Drink

Strawberries (I used less than 1/2 a pint)
Watermelon (3 – 4 2″ frozen chunks)
Fresh Basil Leaves (I used 2)Ice (if not using frozen watermelon)
Vodka or other hard liquor (optional)

  1. Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Add additional basil/ice if desired.
  2. Enjoy on a hot day!

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Please check out the rest of Group D’s recipes by clicking below!



Filed under Baking, Food