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Monday, December 8, 2014

GLUTEN~FREE Gingerbread House

Gingerbread was brought to Europe in 992 by the Armenian monk Gregory of Nicopolis (Gregory Makar) (GrĂ©goire de Nicopolis). He left Nicopolis Pompeii, to live in Bondaroy (France), near the town of Pithiviers. He stayed there for seven years, and taught gingerbread baking to French Christians. He died in 999.
During the 13th century, gingerbread was brought to Sweden by German immigrants. In 15th century Germany, a gingerbread guild controlled production. Early references from the Vadstena Abbey show how the Swedish nuns were baking gingerbread to ease indigestion in 1444. It was the custom to bake white biscuits and paint them as window decorations.
The first documented trade of gingerbread biscuits dates to the 17th century, where they were sold in monasteries, pharmacies and town square farmers' markets. In Medieval England gingerbread was thought to have medicinal properties.One hundred years later the town of Market Drayton in Shropshire, UK became known for its gingerbread, as is proudly displayed on their town's welcome sign. The first recorded mention of gingerbread being baked in the town dates back to 1793; however, it was probably made earlier, as ginger was stocked in high street businesses from the 1640s. Gingerbread became widely available in the 18th century.

  • • 1 1/2 cups brown rice flour
  •   1/4 cup tapioca starch
  •   1/2 cup potato starch (not flour)
  • • 3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
  • • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • • 1/4 cup blackstrap molasses
  • • 1/3 cup  coconut oil
  • • 2-4 tablespoons milk substitute ( or milk)
  • Icing for Gingerbread
  • • 1 cup sifted powdered sugar 
  • • 2-3 tablespoons milk substitute (or milk )
  • • Squeeze of lemon
  • The oil/fat should be solid and at cool room temperature. 
  • 1. Place the first eight dry ingredients in the bowl of your  mixer  with the paddle attachment. Pulse  to combine.
  • 2. Add the molasses and oil and mix on medium-low until you have a damp, sandy mixture.( about 60 seconds).
  • 3. Starting with 2 tablespoons, add the milk substitute and mix on low speed until a dough forms. If the dough doesn't come together use the remaining 2 tablespoons of milk.
  • 4. Wrap the dough with plastic wrap and press into a disk shape. Place in refrigerator for 1 hour or overnight.
  • 5. Working with small portions (keep the unused dough wrapped and chilled), roll out the dough between two sheets of plastic wrap to 1/8" thickness.
  • 6. Cut out desired shapes and carefully transfer by using a very thin spatula dipped in a bit of gluten-free flour 
  • 7. Place cookies on greased cookie sheet and bake in the center of a preheated 350 degree F oven for 8-10 minutes depending on the size and thickness of your cookies.
  • 8. Cool on sheet pan for about five minutes and then transfer to a wire rack.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Gingerbread House Party

This past weekend I hosted a gingerbread house party for family. Having a new grandbaby 7 months ago prompted me to start some new traditions. 

It is such a great experience chatting over hot cocoa, tea and coffee with family and friends. Sometimes we even get a bit competitive. My guests were so happy leaving with their little beautifully decorated houses. 

I can't wait til he gets old enough to decorate his own..... but for now he can just be an adorable little helper. 

                                                             Little cookie man

You can buy pre made houses, make your own from scratch, or even use graham crackers for mini houses.

(over 100 years old)

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter and lard mixed
1 1/2 teaspoons soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
1 egg
1 cup Brer Rabbit Molasses
2 1/2 cups sifted flour
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup hot water

Cream shortening and sugar. Add beaten egg, molasses, then dry ingredients which have been sifted together. Add hot water last and beat until smooth. Roll out on a floured surface, cut in desired shapes. Bake in greased shallow pan or cookie sheet 40-45 minutes in moderate oven (350° F.). Makes 1 large house or 2 smaller houses plus a couple gingerbread men. Good old-fashioned gingerbread.

Gingerbread House  Royal Icing Adhesive

3 Tablespoons meringue powder (available wherever cake decorating supplies are sold , even Walmart )
4 cups powdered sugar 
4-6 Tablespoons cold water

  • In a large bowl beat the meringue powder and water until frothy.
  • Gradually add the powdered sugar, half of a cup at a time.Scrap down the sides of the bowl if necessary, until the icing becomes thick.
  • Place the prepared frosting into an air tight container and leave at room temperature until ready to use. Or place directly in to a pastry/frosting bag fitted with a tip and use as soon as possible.
  • If you would like to color your icing, use the food coloring in place of the water.

  •  A couple days before my party I assembled the houses to ensure they would be sturdy and dry for my guests. The last thing I wanted was for a house to break apart on someone.

      If you are on a budget, ask people to bring a bag of two of candy ..people always have plenty of left over from trick or treat.

                                            Everyone looking very serious here....

                                                Sometimes we just need a nap.....
                                             The teamwork is my favorite part.

                                                   Admiring their  masterpiece....  

    I encourage everyone to try your hand at your own party. It is sooooo much fun. Crank up your favorite Christmas music, and throw a bunch of candy and sprinkles on the table...Let the fun begin!!!

                        Now to get all that frosting off of everything!!!


    Sunday, November 23, 2014

    Pink reloved repurposed Appliances

    My kitchen is sooooo small, with only one cupboard, there is only room for necessities aka food. This means all my appliances have to be out...It is soo hard finding pretty appliances to match my romantic rose kitchen and being a thrifty gal with a love for vintage , most of mine are thrift store finds like the crock pot, and old Osterizer blender.

     All of these are painted with spray can auto paint, The finish is amazing, they will color~match any color you want. I chose Annie Sloan Antoinette color for mine ....I just decoupaged rose pictures printed on my computer using exterior Mod Podge. You could use waterslide decals from Ebay also....Graphics Fairy has great old rose high resolution images for printing...


    Tuesday, November 18, 2014


    I have delt with my butt ugly kitchen faucet for the last day. I have been on the hunt looking for a different one,and have yet to find one I like....sooooo,.... let the repurposing begin...I can do this!.... 

    I went to the auto paint store and had Annie Sloan chalk paint color Antoinette color matched .They put it in a spray can. Cost was 8 dollars for the pink, and 8 dollars for the gold. These are full sized spray cans like you get at any other store.

    Prep work consisted of cleaning the metal really well with rubbing alcohol, and then scuffing it with steel wool...I put a fan on it overnight to make sure it was good and dry.

    Then all ya have to do is tape it off and spray 2 coats, letting each coat  dry thoroughly.

    And here she is all done....
    I E6000 glued a plastic rose that I broke off of a shower curtain hanger for the top of the handle..

    Friday, November 14, 2014


    • 3 C. Flour
    • 1/2 Tsp. salt
    • 2 Eggs
    • 1 T. Butter, melted
    • 1/2 C. Milk

     Get your ingredients so that you don’t have to grab anything while mixing. Your gonna need that flour so keep the lid off and handy....
    1. Place the flour and salt in a mixing bowl and form a well in the center.Pour the butter, milk, and eggs into the center of the well.Get your rings off, and dig in with both hands....mix the ingredients until they come together into a ball, adding flour if needed.
    1. Knead for 5 minutes on a flour covered table ......After about 5 minutes the dough should be pretty smooth {* note it will not be as smooth a  bread dough as there is no yeast in it.}..... Place the dough in a bowl with a towel covering it  for 10 minutes......Roll the dough on a floured surface  into  as close as you can get to a rectangular shape  about 1/4″ thick .....The dough will expand when it’s cooked, so if it is not rolled thin enough you will have very thick dumpling type noodles......Cut the dough  lengthwise in the length you want your noodles......Using a pizza cutter to cut the noodles{ I used a cheese cutter for a pretty edge} slice the dough into strips width wise, making each strip 1/4″-1/2″ wide.
    1. Dust a little flour over the tops of the noodles and then Gently toss them with your hands, lightly coating the noodles with flour.....The noodles can be allowed to air dry and then  saved for later in an airtight container for up to a month in the refrigerator....or can be boiled in a pot of salted water for 5 to 7 minutes then added to your favorite recipe, or just add butter..... For a sweet treat add some cinnamon sugar...yummmmmm .