Upcoming events and a website refresh

Hey, folks!

I’m planning on doing a redo of both of my websites in the next couple months, so posting has been slowed down. If you have those creative genes, let me know — I’m looking for someone to assist me in the process.

In the meantime, I have a pile of upcoming events in December to answer all your questions about baking for the holidays. My books will be available at each for a discount, and you can reserve copies, too. Join me for each while we discover the world of gluten-free and allergy-friendly baking, with extra tips for entertaining and desserts around the holidays.

And if you need help planning those holiday menus? Let me know… I’ll have you covered.

Niagara Falls Public Library Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 8.50.42 AM
Monday, December 1st
4848 Victoria Ave., Niagara Falls, ON
More details here.

Niagara on the Lake Public LibraryScreen Shot 2014-09-08 at 8.52.52 AM
Tuesday, December 2nd
10 Anderson Lane, Niagara on the Lake, ON
More details here.

Brampton Public LibraryBL_Logo
Saturday, December 6th
20 Loafer’s Lake Lane, Brampton, ON
More details here.

Welland Public Library
Monday, December 8th
50 The Boardwalk, Welland, ON
More details here.

Thorold Public LibraryThorold Public Library
Thursday, December 11th
14 Ormond St. North, Thorold, ON
More details here.

Toronto Public Library, Brentwood Branchtoronto public library logo
Wednesday, December 10th
36 Brentwood Road North, Toronto, ON
More details here.

Prince Edward County Public Library, Picton Branchpecl_header_logo
Tuesday, December 16th
208 Main St., Picton, ON
More details here.


Maple-Glazed Pumpkin-Pear Bundt with Crumble Topping [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

Thought it was about time to post something up.

And, like everything else in life, the answer is always cake.

Maple Glazed Pumpkin Pear Bundt with Crumble Topping3

Maple-Glazed Pumpkin-Pear Bundt with Crumble Topping

A perfect-for-brunch pumpkin cake with a crunchy crumble topping and a sweet maple glaze. If you don’t have pears on hand, try fresh cranberries, apples, or your other favourite fall fruits. 

Makes 10 slices

For the crumble topping:
3/4 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup unrefined cane sugar
1/4 cup tapioca flour
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon fine sea or Himalayan salt
6 tablespoons vegan buttery spread (such as Earth Balance), melted

For the cake:
1 cup sorghum flour
3/4 cup teff flour
7 tablespoons tapioca flour, divided
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
6 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
1 cup unrefined cane sugar
1/4 cup nondairy milk
2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups mashed pumpkin
2 cups finely chopped ripe pears
2 tablespoons cider vinegar

For the glaze:
1/2 cup icing sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon dark maple syrup (if you don’t have dark, you may want to add the extract)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon nondairy milk, plus more as needed
1/2 teaspoon maple extract (optional)
Pinch fine sea or Himalayan salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil a 10-inch (12 cup) bundt pan. Dust with sorghum flour, tapping out excess.

To make the crumble, put the sorghum flour, sugar, tapioca flour, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk well to combine. Add the vegan buttery spread, stirring to mix. Use your fingers to press the crumble mixture into small clumps. Refrigerate until needed.

To make the cake, put the sorghum flour, teff flour, 6 tablespoons of the tapioca flour, the cinnamon, baking powder, ginger, xanthan gum, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg in a medium bowl. Whisk well to combine.

Put the coconut oil, sugar, nondairy milk, ground flaxseed, and vanilla extract in a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer. Using a hand mixer or the stand mixer, beat on high speed until emulsified, about 1 minute. Add the pumpkin. Beat well to combine. Add the flour mixture. Beat on medium speed until just combined.

Put the pears in a bowl. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of tapioca flour. Toss to combine. Add the pear mixture to the cake batter, along with the cider vinegar. Stir to combine. Scrape the mixture into the prepared pan, spreading evenly.

Remove the crumble topping from the fridge. Top the batter with the crumble in an even layer, pressing down slightly. Bake for 60 to 70 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then put a plate over pan and turn it over to remove it. Carefully invert the cake onto a second plate so the crumble topping is facing up. Cool completely before glazing.

To make the glaze, put the icing sugar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, nondairy milk, maple extract (if using), and salt in a bowl. Mix well to combine, adding more milk if necessary to create a drizzly consistency. Pour overtop of the crumble. Let stand about 20 minutes to set before serving.

Roasted Endive with Truffled Caramelized Leeks [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

Buying truffle oil? Look for the legit stuff. And then make this.

leeks, endive, truffle oil

Roasted Endive with Truffled Caramelized Leeks

White truffle oil is rich and fragrant; a little goes a long way. Be sure to seek out white truffle oil made with actual white truffles. Many pseudo-versions use perfumes instead of the real deal.

Makes 4 servings

4 endive/chicory, trimmed and cut in half lengthwise
5 tablespoons (30mL) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Fine sea or Himalayan salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3 large leeks, thinly sliced (just the whites)
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon (2 to 3mL) white truffle oil

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Put the endive cut-side-up on a baking sheet. Brush with 2 tablespoons (30mL) of the olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for about 25 minutes, until tender and starting to char on the edges.

Meanwhile, heat the remaining olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the leeks and cook until golden and starting to caramelize, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in the truffle oil, starting with 1/4 teaspoon, adding more to taste. Season with salt and pepper. Top the endive with the leek mixture. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Brined Herb Tofu [gluten-free, vegan]

Earlier in the week I posted a recipe for homemade mustard that was spiced with smoked paprika, and it was pictured with herb-infused brined tofu, which I promised would come later this week.

So it’s later this week.


The tofu is reminiscent of feta with that salty, brininess to it. Getting some good tofu here is the way to go, as well as taking the time to press the water out of it beforehand. After that, it stores well for about a week, and I actually froze some, too. If you’re going to do that route, opt for defrosting it then pressing it in a few paper towels to soak up excess moisture, otherwise it tastes watered down. Continue reading

Yellow Mustard with Smoked Paprika [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

While I transition to my new site, my recipe posting has slowed, but they’re all stowed in my computer waiting to be shared.

It will take me awhile to bring to fruition, so in the meantime, here’s a recipe to tide this site over. I’ll post a couple of samples from my new book, too — along with detailed information and updates about some excitement that will go along with it.

homemade mustard and brined tofu1

On the top left, you have some homemade mustard that was spiced with smoked paprika (so good), along with herb-infused brined tofu. These were two elements for an article on ultimate sandwich making and, I have to say, they are definitely two of my top components of an ultimate sandwich.

This was the first time I’ve made mustard from scratch, and I’m surprised that I’ve never made it before; it’s definitely easier than any condiment, and condiments are easy to make.

Mustard today. Tofu to come this week. Here it is, folks. Continue reading

Book launch! >> September 19th at the United Way FallFest

Plans this Friday?

If you’re free, I’ll suggest you head down to United Way Fall Fest to launch their Fall Fundraising Campaign. On Friday, September 19th from 4 pm to 10 pm, a load of food trucks, artisans, live entertainment, kids’ activities and other fun things are happening at Oakes Park in Niagara Falls.

BookLaunchPoster dig

But wait! There’s more! You can join me there for my book launch for my third book, The Allergy-Free Cook Makes Pies and Desserts! Folks will have the chance to meet me (though most of you have!) and purchase a signed copy of all of my books. A 45 minute baking Q&A and workshop focusing on gluten, dairy, egg, and soy-free baking will start at 5pm.

Pre-orders are available, as I have limited copies. Reserve yours now!

Fresh Mediterranean Skillet [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

It’s been a busy week after arriving back from the Veggie Fest this weekend in Naperville. I met a ton of great folks and it was definitely a blast.

IMG_1397If I met you while I was there, be sure to drop me an email and say hello! And thank you to everyone’s support in buying all three (yes, including the third) books!

Fresh Mediterranean Skillet

Loads of flavor come together in a simple skillet that can put dinner on the table in no time. And don’t shy away from doubling the amounts; it tastes even better the next day.

Makes 6 servings

1 tablespoon Garlic Olive Oil (I used Della Terra‘s, but if you don’t have access to it, use extra garlic and basil)
1 tablespoon Basil Olive Oil
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 (14oz) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14oz) can artichoke hearts (not in oil), drained and cut into quarters
4 whole roasted red peppers, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes or 3/4 cup sliced sundried tomatoes
1/4 cup black olives, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon capers
4 cups packed baby spinach or other greens
Juice from 1/2 lemon
Traditional Balsamic Condimento, or aged balsamic vinegar, to taste
Fresh basil, chopped

Heat both olive oils in a skillet over medium heat. Add the red onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the cannellini beans. Cook for 1 minute, stirring often.

Add the artichoke hearts, roasted red pepper, tomatoes, black olives, and capers. Cook for 1 minute. Add the greens and lemon juice. Cook just until the greens have wilted.

Bring to high heat and drizzle with the balsamic vinegar and fresh basil, cooking until fragrant.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

Picnic Potato Salad [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

We all have our favourite version of potato salad. There’s the creamy mayo and egg version “just like Mom use to make”. Or that smoky and warm German masterpiece with a wine vinegar tang. Then, sometimes, trusting our tastebuds, we let potatoes shine tossed with Thai red curry paste and coconut milk, or a Mediterranean version with a generous squeeze of lemon juice and robust olive oil.

potato salad (dill pickle)2

And then there’s this, with the not-so-traditional role of the acid taken over by pickle juice.

Continue reading

Fresh Broccoli Salad with Apricot Vinaigrette [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

There are plenty of updates that need to happen, both in terms of recipes that need to be posted (dozens!), updates about events (starting to be listed here), and details about the third book (also here). But it’s about time I post a recipe.

So let’s talk broccoli salad. I love it. I love all variations of it. My favourite, in fact, is roasting broccoli in the oven with red onions, then tossing it with a mixture of tahini, lemon, and garlic. And then there’s this: a no-mayo variation of the classic with a tangy vinaigrette using summery flavors. I love this one.

broccoli salad with apricot2

And once you make that and still have a hankering for broccoli, try tossing it in an olive oil-based vinaigrette using dark balsamic and a bulb’s worth of roasted garlic cloves. Add capers, olive, artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, and cherry tomatoes for good measure and you’re set.

Continue reading

Chilled Spring Pea and Tarragon Soup [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

Am I too late for spring peas? I might be. But if I’m not, or you smartly froze some, then give yourself 20 minutes* and make this soup.


So the photo is a little blurry, but let’s be frank: eating, learning, laughing, and having a great time (in this case, at a Della Terra workshop) is the priority. Photo-taking? A quick snap of the smartphone gives you the right idea.

Continue reading