Saturday, March 27, 2010

A Trip to the Tropics with Cupcakes

Coconut Cupcakes!

I don’t know why, but I was just relaxing and suddenly I knew that I wanted coconut cupcakes. I mean, I really wanted coconut cupcakes. After looking around, I set out to create a batch with a new recipe of my invention… and disaster struck. For one of the few times in my life, my recipe crashed and burned so badly that my husband and I were left just poking the hockey pucks my cupcakes had fallen into. We each ate one, then gave the rest to our wild pigeons. That night I was tormented as I tried to realize what I did wrong, and the next night I tweaked that first recipe in several places. I was amazed with the results. They are divine. Creamy and moist, they have a wonderful light coconut taste and texture. Often, when people don’t like coconut they don’t like the texture of the flakes. If that sounds familiar for you or someone you know, then just leave the flakes off the top, and you will have a flake free dessert.

One important note is that these are so creamy that they don’t travel that well. If you are transporting them, use a rigid cupcake carrier or, leave them in the cupcake pan and frost them on site for the prettiest presentation.

If you find the coconut extract hard to find, try a Whole Foods if you have one nearby, and I got my coconut flour at my local Sprouts, which is a farmers market. The extract is by Frontier and the flour is made by Bob’s Red Mill.

Wet Ingredients
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup vegan butter
1 cup light coconut milk
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon coconut extract
1 teaspoon almond extract

Dry Ingredients
½ cup coconut flour
½ cup gluten free baking mix (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a mixer, cream the sugar with the vegan butter once it has reached room temperature. Add in the coconut milk, apple cider vinegar, and extracts. Mix well, until thoroughly combined. In a separate bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients, and whisk together until there are no lumps (coconut flour LOVES to lump). Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients until thoroughly combined, and immediately put in a cupcake tin lined with cupcake papers (white papers looks very nice for these). Bake for 23 minutes, and let cool completely before frosting.

The Frosting
4-5 cups powdered sugar
½ cup light coconut milk
1 teaspoon coconut extract
½ cup vegan butter

In a mixer, place the butter once it is room temperature. Cream until slightly fluffy, then add the coconut milk and extract. Combine, then add the powdered sugar, one ½ cup at a time, until your frosting forms firm peaks when you withdraw the beaters. Frost the cupcakes, then if you want to, add coconut flakes to the top of the cupcakes. Enjoy.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Gluten Free Biscotti Take Two!

Litter of Gluten Free Biscotti!

This is the second part of the great biscotti adventure. I wanted to recreate my ginger macadamia nut biscotti recipe, but it was late at night and I didn’t have any macadamia nuts! I took a quick stock of what I did have and I decided to use hazelnuts and pine nuts. The flavor is different, but they are very good, and now we have a new favorite around here!

I used sorghum flour in this recipe because it has a very light ‘clean’ taste that I find sometimes lacking in the gluten free baking mix. I wanted that to compliment the flavor of the fresh ginger. Also, these taste ‘ok’ when they first come out of the oven, but they taste amazing the next day, so they are well worth waiting for. Try these with a cup of green or white tea, and they will make your toes curl up!

Dry Ingredients
3 cups sorghum flour
1 tablespoon xanthan gum
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup raw hazelnuts
½ cup pine nuts

Wet Ingredients
½ cup vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
1 cup sugar
1 ½ tablespoons Ener-G MIXED WITH
6 tablespoons water


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

  2. In a bowl, combine the vegan butter with the sugar.

  3. Cream until light and fluffy.

  4. In a separate bowl, mix the Ener-G with the water and whisk until it is thoroughly combined.

  5. Add to the creamed butter and mix together.

  6. Add the fresh ginger and mix again.

  7. Add the almond extract and mix again.

  8. In a separate bowl, combine all dry ingredients, and whisk together to remove any lumps.

  9. Make sure that the hazelnuts are chopped so they are very fine.

  10. You do not need to chop the pine nuts.

  11. Add all the dry ingredients to the wet, and then shape the dough into 3 equal logs, about 4-5 inches wide.

  12. Bake for 25 minutes on a cookie sheet.

  13. Cool for 10 minutes.

  14. Slice about 1/3 of an inch thick, then return to the cookie sheet and bake for 7 more minutes.

  15. Then remove the cookies, flip them over, and bake the other side for 7 more minutes.

  16. It is complicated, but worth it!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Hello! I took a few weeks of baking to try and help my waist line but I am back now. I wanted to come back with a bang, so to speak. I started thinking about which cookies I should take and twist into gluten-free, vegan wonders next. Right before we went gluten free, I made these incredible ginger macadamia nut biscotti. They were killer. The flavor, the texture… they were damn good. But I wrote off biscotti, since gluten helps to hold it together in the hot water you are dunking it in.

Then the Dragon Age expansion came out for Xbox! Jason knew that he would be drinking coffee for the next few days so he could fit in heavy doses of video games around his many other responsibilities. That made me decide that I should make my vegan biscotti gluten free. It worked, and I came up with two flavors that night alone.

The first one is a double chocolate walnut biscotti. It is perfect for mochas, black teas, and a nice chocolate fix. One very important note is that these cookies are best the next day, so make them one day ahead of when you need them, then wrap them up or seal them in an airtight container and enjoy the next day with your soy or almond latte!

Double Chocolate Biscotti

Dry Ingredients
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 ½ cups gluten free baking mix (I use Bob’s Red Mill)
1 tablespoon xanthan gum
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup finely chopped walnuts
½ cup mini vegan chocolate chips

Wet Ingredients
¼ cup vegan butter (I used Earth Balance Sticks)
¾ cup brown sugar
½ cup sugar
1 ½ tablespoons Ener-G egg replacer MIXED WITH
6 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons vegan coffee creamer

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, combine the vegan butter with the brown sugar and sugar. Cream until light and fluffy. In a separate bowl, mix the Ener-G with the water and whisk until it is thoroughly combined. Add to the creamed butter and mix together. Add the coffee creamer and mix again. In a separate bowl, combine all dry ingredients, and whisk together to remove any lumps. Make sure that the walnut are chopped so they are very fine, and that you use mini chocolate chips, or the texture will be too rough to make great biscotti. Add all the dry ingredients to the wet, and then shape the dough into 3 equal logs, about 4-5 inches wide. Bake for 25 minutes on a cookie sheet. Cool for 10 minutes. Slice about 1/3 of an inch thick, then return to the cookie sheet and bake for 7 more minutes. Then remove the cookies, flip them over, and bake the other side for 7 more minutes. It is complicated, but worth it!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

I love flours!

I love flours!

Most people get all excited when their significant other brings them flowers. Not me. I get all excited when my husband brings me flours. The fact that he brings me flours instead of flowers is part of the reason I married him. There are many reasons that flours get me all worked up. One of them is that there are so darned many of them! When you are a baker, you appreciate that they all bring something different to the table, and you want to try them all. Being gluten free gives you a good excuse to try something other than boring old General Mills All Purpose Flour (insert yawn here). I will share a few of my favorites with you, and the ones that I think any bad kitty needs to keep in their pantry.

#1: Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Baking Mix!
You must keep some of this in your pantry! I recommend at least 2 pounds if you don’t bake a lot, and 4 pounds if you do. Trust me, I put my pantry space where my recommendations are. I have about 40 pounds of this stuff. Of course, I am a freak, and I have a lot of dessert blogs to do, so there you go. If you happen to have a Costco card, they sometimes have 5 pound bags hella cheap, and that is a good time to stock up. Now before you get too happy thinking this stuff will solve all your gluten free worries, it won’t… unless you doctor it up. I ALWAYS add 1 teaspoon of xanthan gum per 1 cup of GFBM (as I think of it). I also compensate with more sweetener. Just a bit, but it does a long way in covering up the nasty, beany taste that GFBM gets from the fava bean and garbanzo bean flour it has in it. Yuck!

#2: Rice Flour, brown and sweet
Brown rice flour is so Birkenstock it’s great… it has a gritty texture and a healthy taste. I use it where I would use whole wheat flour. You will need to add some xanthan gum to this, too. Start off with 1 teaspoon per 1 cup until you find what works for you. Sweet rice will need the exact same thing. It’s fun to combine with brown rice flour, in the same way you combine white wheat flour with whole wheat. I like the combo, and use this in my cinnadoodle recipe I shall post soon.

#3: Sorgum Flour
I have just started using this flour, but it tastes creepily like wheat flour, yet is gluten free! Again, add the same amount of xanthan gum as the other flours, but track some of this down. If you have access to an Indian grocery, try there, because it will be much cheaper than at Whole Paycheck (Whole Foods).

#4: Buckwheat Flour
Buckwheat flour is a poser, it has no wheat. It is a type of seed, and a damn tasty seed at that. I love using this in my muffins and pancakes. It has a dark color and an earthy flavor that you can’t find anywhere else. Buy some and use it. Add some molasses and maybe some maple syrup as a sweetener and it will knock your socks right off. Trust me.

So here are some flours to try out! Enjoy your gluten free, vegan baking!

Friday, February 19, 2010

A Call to Healthy Kitties Everywhere!

I love dessert and so does my husband. Actually, I sometimes feel that he has a love/hate relationship with dessert. Sometimes he loves it, and sometimes it just makes him feel bad because it doesn't love him back. Once upon a time he was diabetic, and now he is vegan, fit, and happy. I think dessert can remind him of the bad times, and good dessert scares him because he is above all else a foodie that loves good food just for the taste of it.

So one day, I was getting ready to make a batch of cookies and I noticed with great guilt that some of the fruit I bought for us was not as fresh as it could be. Part of that was because I had been making lots of dessert. Both of us love fruit, but love my baking a little more. So I took some nectarines that were slightly soft (but still good) and I decided I could make some cookies with those! I set out to make the other ingredients as healthy as possible. Agave nectar is low on the glycemic index, which means that it does not inter your bloodstream as quickly and 'spike' your blood sugar, so you don't get a heady rush, you get a nice build up.

I want to dedicate this to a kitty, but I don't have any super healthy kitties in my life, so I want to hear from you, the reader! Do you have kitties that exercise with you? Do you have kitties that nibble veggies? Let me know! Send me your kitties stories, pictures, and names and I will enter you in this month's 'Kitty of the Month' contest, where the owner will get goodies!

Jason's Healthy Kitty Cookies

Wet ingredients

3/4 cup agave nectar

1/2 cup maple syrup

1 tablespoon Ener-G egg replacer power MIXED WITH

2 tablespoons of water

1 1/4 cup peach puree (about 4 small peaches or nectarines)

1/2 cup vegan butter, slightly colder than room temperature

Large ingredients

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon xananthan gum

1 1/2 cup gluten free baking mix

2 cups oatmeal

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 cup walnuts, chopped


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, place your pitted, cleaned peaches. Puree. Add this to your mixing bowl, and combine with agave and maple syrup. In a separate bowl, whisk the ener-G with the water until light and frothy. Add to the syrup puree mixture. Add the butter and mix with a mixer until there are only small chunks of butter left. In a separate bowl, add all the dry ingredients and whisk together so they are blended. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture, one cup at a time until incorporated. Use a small cookie scoop (about 1 tablespoon, rounded) to scoop the cookies onto the cookie sheets and bake for 12 minutes. Wait for about 5 minutes and remove from cookie sheets. They are great that day but taste even better the next day when served at room temperature.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Lover's Lemon Bundt Cake

Sweets for the sweet!

If you say the title of this blog five times in the mirror, a bad kitty will show up and give you a cupcake! But all Candyman rip offs aside, I thought I would blog in and share what I made for my husband for Valentines. I have an unnatural love of Nordicware’s bundt pans, especially the kitchy ones in cute shapes like castles and bee hives. If they are miniature bundt pans, I am doubly in love. Knowing this, he got me a Nordicware bundt pan that has a dozen roses on it. I am still smiling.

I knew what I wanted to make in my shiny new pan, too! My family has a famous lemon bundt cake that we all love! The only problem is I have not had it in years because it was not vegan and it was definitely not gluten free. So what could I do? I got in the kitchen, changed the ingredients around, and baked these up. The results were so good that two of our non-vegan, gluten loving friends were amazed. One said, “The dough melts in my mouth! That’s never happened before!”

I would like to dedicate this recipe to one of my bad kitties from the past, Lover. Lover was a black tom cat who loved to purr and be petted. Once, when we were moving across country, he and his ‘wife’ cat, Poo Poo escaped into a rest stop. My mother ran through crowds of people and cars shouting, “Lover, Poo Poo! Lover, Poo Poo!” Only later did she realize how embarrassing it really was. She did recover the kitties. I don’t have a picture of him, but I remember him with this great bundt cake.

“Lover’s Lemon Bundt”

1 2/3 cup granulated sugar
½ tsp salt
2/3 cups veggie oil
½ cup water
2 tablespoons Ener-G
2 teaspoons lemon extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
2/3 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons lemon zest

1 cup sorgum flour
1 cup gluten free baking mix (I use Bob’s Red Mill)
½ cup sweet rice flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon xananth gum

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix the sugar and salt with the oil until thoroughly combined. In a separate bowl, add the water and Ener-G, whisking together until light and frothy. Add this to the sugar oil mixture. Combine. Add the extracts, the juice and the zest. Combine. In a separate bowl, add all the dry ingredients. Whisk so they are combined and there are no lumps. Add the dry mix to the wet mix, one cup at a time until incorporated. Oil a bundt pan. Pour mixture in, stopping about ¾ of the way (this needs a 12 cup bundt pan, or you can do a smaller one, but you’ll have left over). Place in the oven. Small individual bundts, such as my roses, bake for 20 minutes. Large bundts should cook for about 50 minutes. Stop when a skewer placed in the center comes out mostly clean. Wait to unpan for about 20 minutes, then place a plate over the bundt pan, hold it there, invert the pan so it is on top and the plate beneath, and give a light tap. Congrats! You have a finished pretty bundt cake. On to step two.

2 cups powdered sugar
About ½ -1/3 cup lemon juice, until slightly running.

until the cake (or cakes) are cool. Drizzle with frosting. Enjoy!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Welcome to the Bad Kitty Bakery!

Hello Everyone and a Few Notes on Gluten

Hello everyone to the premier blog of the Bad Kitty Bakery! I'm Madelyn, and this blog is a place for me to showcase to die for desserts, that just happen to be vegan, and in almost all cases gluten free. Don’t let the gluten free thing throw you. I promise that you won’t miss it, and in many cases, it actually helps the texture. I know you probably don’t believe me, because I wouldn’t before I had to learn to bake gluten free, but there is an actual scientific reason. You see, gluten is a protein found in wheat and wheat relative flours (rye, spelt, barley, etc…). The protein provides structure, but that structure hardens when it is worked. That is why your cupcakes made with regular flour can turn out like rubber if you over mix them. Trust me, it’s happened to me! But using flours that without gluten means that isn’t an issue.

The aim of this blog is also to showcase bad kitties in all their glory. If you have a bad kitty in your life (or a naughty kitty, or even a good kitty that does funny things) then send me their picture, name, and a description of what they do, and they can get a recipe designed and named after them! If this happens, they will also be entered in the Bad Kitty of the Month contest. The owner gets a special treat of baked goods, and they will be entered in a contest for the Bad Kitty of the Year! The caretaker of that bad kitty will get ‘mad loots’ of baked goods, so please, send away!

Next blog I will start with the recipes. There will be a recipe for lemon pound cake, a picture (because recipes without pictures are the worst!) and some musings on the bad kitty that inspired the recipe. I will include scientific facts to explain some of the items in the recipe. I hope to see you back in a few days!