Tag Archives: coconut

Coconut Lime Macaroons

So I mentioned to save those six egg whites from the Sour Cherry Grand Marnier Creme Brulee, but it’s taken a while to post a recipe.  But that seems to be life.  I’ve been in a post New Year’s state making lists of what I value, writing up a personal mission statement and embracing how life is so good.  In July I was dredging through the seas of anxiety & fear, while September came and it was more like wading.  Fear has plagued me in the past(I’m probably not the only one), and it crept up its little head again.

What I have been embracing is the present.

Looking at the little things that bring joy into my life.  Those little things when you add them all up they are exponentially greater than any fear trying to budge its way into your heart & mind.

Little things…infectious laughter of my two year old, the smile on my four year old when I pick her up from the bus, the warmth of Ben’s hand on my back, special snapshot moments with friends that remind me of heaven and sharing these little macaroons with friends while watching Anne of Green Gables.  What little things remind you of joy in this present?

A Year Ago: Grapefruit Yogurt Loaf Cake & Palace Temple & Hospitality

Coconut Lime Macaroons (printable recipe)

These little gems are perfect after you finished making the sour cherry creme brûlée, due to the leftover egg whites.  I love limes and I love coconut, so they are pretty much a great combination.  Plus, they’re a non-fuss sort of treat.

Ingredients:

6 egg whites, room temperature

1/2 cup agave nectar, or raw honey

2 cups almond flour

2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut

zest of one lime

1/4 tsp lime oil

Frosting:

1 cup powdered sugar

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

zest of 1/2 lime

juice of 1/2 lime

Directions: Preheat the oven to 350.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  In the bowl of an electric mixer with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites on high speed until the egg whites are medium peaks.  Add the agave nectar or honey and salt and whip again until stiff peaks.

In a separate bowl, combine the almond flour, unsweetened coconut, lime zest & lime oil.  Combine.  Pour 1/3 of dry ingredients into whipped egg whites and fold it into the egg whites.  Continue with remaining 2/3 (in 1/3 portions) until the wet & dry ingredients are thoroughly combined.

Using a cookie scoop (about 2 Tb), scoop dough and place on the lined baking sheet 1 inch apart.  Bake for 15 minutes (look for slightly browned parts on the top, but overall white).  Cool on the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.

Make the frosting: Sift the powdered sugar.  Add in the butter and blend it all together using a fork.  Add the lime juice & zest.  Mix until it’s creamed together.  Taste.  If you need a bit more lime taste, then add a bit more zest.

Frost the tops of cooled macaroons.  Serve and eat!

If you want to opt out with the frosting, then up the agave or honey to 3/4 cup in the macaroons.

Coconut Ginger Butternut Squash Soup

Starting Monday, Ben & I will be joining our gym’s call to partake in the “Lean & Green Challenge.”  Before I divulge into what it entails, let me say that I can already imagine the expression on your face as you continue reading.  And I’m actually looking forward to it (in some respects).  It is a Paleo eating style, which means we will be eating as Paleolithic people.  You got that? Okay, well, it means we only eat lean meats, vegetables, limited fruit, nuts & seeds and good fats (olive oil, coconut oil, nut oils, nut butters, etc).  That means we will not be eating any grains (containing gluten and gluten-free), dairy, sugars, or legumes (yes peanuts are a part of that).

I, of course, prefaced it with what we can eat, because most people upon hearing what we can’t eat automatically ask, “Well, what CAN you eat?”  The next question, “Kamille, why are you doing this?  What does this mean with baking?” Good question!  Ben and I have been looking at our Family Mission (reading this great book) and our top priority is getting our family healthy.  Ben joined Jogo in March, me in August, my mental health turned for the worse and we want more from life. Friends & co-Jogomates have testified the goodness of doing Paleo.  How aches, pains, intestinal problems, weight around the gut, etc went away after following a Paleo food lifestyle (Robb Wolf), along with regular cardio-exercise.  So really, I would have to ask myself, “Why wouldn’t I join the “L&G Challenge?”

And about baking…well, to be quite honest, I haven’t really wanted to bake much these days.  Maybe it’s a mixture of exercise, lack of time, demands of family?  And maybe I’m just burnt out.  What I am excited about is loving my family in these next 30 days by preparing & cooking food that will be good to their body, help me menu plan (for once anyway) and most likely have a tighter rein on the food budget.  Plus, we have a 1/2 a cow in our deep freezer, so here’s to using it.  One of my recipes is this soup, which puts a twist on an Autumn classic.  The coconut is subtle enough, which is why I didn’t use a whole can (but you certainly could) and plays on the creaminess known to the butternut squash.  The ginger adds bite & spice to make it come a bit alive.  Stay tuned as our family embarks on this adventure, and hopefully share a recipe or two:)

A Year Ago:  Simple MealsJuxtaposition

Coconut Ginger Butternut Squash Soup (printable recipe)

If you want to substitute the water for warm chicken broth, go right ahead, because it would add a greater depth of flavor to it.

Ingredients:

2 butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed, cut into 1 inch cubes

1 small onion, roughly cut into large dice

extra virgin olive oil

kosher salt

1/2 cup coconut milk

3-5 cups water

2 tsp ground ginger

1/2 tsp finely grated ginger

Garnish options: olive oil, kosher salt, red pepper chili flakes, cilantro

Directions: Preheat oven to 425.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.  Place butternut squash & onion on parchment paper.  Drizzle with olive oil, mix around with hands, sprinkle a bit of salt on top.  Roast for about 30-35 minutes, check the squash (a fork should pierce right through).

Add the roasted squash & onions in batches to the blender.  Add 1/4 cup coconut milk and about 1/2 cup of water.  Put a towel on top of the lid to avoid getting burnt by the steam.  Blend until completely pureed.  You most likely will need to add more water along the way.  Continue doing this, until all the squash/onion mixture is pureed; as well as, the coconut milk is gone.

Transfer the puree to a large pot and bring up to medium heat.  Add more water, 1/2 cup portion at a time, until you get the consistency you prefer.  Add ground ginger & freshly grated ginger (using a microplane zester).  Add salt to taste.  If you need a bit of acid, then squeeze in the juice of 1/2 a lime–taste and if you think it needs the other 1/2–go ahead and add it.

Ladle into bowl, drizzle a bit of olive oil on top, along with red pepper chili flakes, some cilantro and a pinch of coarse salt.


Banana Waffles

I got back late last night from Oregon.  The trip was with my dear friend Hilary, while Ben was in full charge with our girls.  Of course, they were complete angels for him.  But, I cannot complain as Hilary and I spent Saturday afternoon in Portland; where, we took in the tastes & smells of fresh morels, blueberry chevre and the best Pinot Gris I’ve ever experienced.  We gathered our dinner supplies from the Saturday Farmer’s Market, then on over to Powell’s Books, Stumptown Coffee & this wonderful deli, where I tasted one of the best bialys (caramelized onions in the middle with schmear).

Our road trip was discussed back in August as I dreamed of driving with Hil down a country road without husbands or children (latter for me only).   The plan would be post-nursing and pre-next baby (No–not pregnant).  Destination was Albany, OR to pick up my grandmother’s hope chest that had been collecting dust at my Uncle’s house.  I had envisioned staying along the water in the middle of nowhere, in some rustic, yet comfortable cabin.  Well, let me tell you.  If you are in need of a country getaway, then you should stay here.  It was idyllic.  I don’t want to throw around that word, but truly–it was.  Hilary called it heaven.  And it was close to it.

It sat on the Willamette River, it was an old granary, beautiful hardwood floors, mid-70s, & not a care in the world.  We ate so well.  If our camera hadn’t gotten lost in La Jolla when we went a month ago–I would have taken pictures of our dinner & posted the recipe.  We bought fresh, wild caught Soho salmon, shiitake mushrooms, chives & chevre. The salmon was beyond exceptional.  It was topped with sautéed shiitakes with a bit of cream with freshly cut chives rolled in the chevre.  Mixed salad greens with pear, more chevre & chopped chives.  Pinot Gris & a Cab/Syrah mix from a Oregon winery.  I wish time could have stood still.

Before I left on my trip (Friday evening), V came in talking about eating waffles.  We don’t make waffles that often during the week.  We rotate like most people with peanut butter toast, oatmeal, or eggs.  However, since I would be gone that weekend–waffles it was for my girls.  I made a different kind than what I’m offering here.  But this is one of those recipes I’ve been wanting to share for a while and the present is time as any.  They remind me of Hawaii, where the banana pancake hits the scene and coconut-banana syrup sits on the diner tables.  So maybe you’ve had your banana pancakes and you’re thinking, “Eh!”  Well, do yourself, your family, your friends & your neighbors a favor by making these.  And I know there are recipes where the author gives me topping suggestions and I might accept or disregard.  Well, in this instance, the toppings that I list are essential for everything to come together.  To eat these waffles by themselves are just okay, but when you combine the nuttiness of the whole wheat & oat bran with the mild sweetness of the banana in the waffle and the slight bit of desiccated coconut, butter, pure maple syrup with sliced bananas–well that’s a whole other ball game.  The only thing missing would be a mimosa, or daiquiri, but it might just be too early to make it count.

Banana Waffles (printable recipe)

Wet Ingredients:

1 cup whole milk
½  cup whole milk yogurt
1 banana, thoroughly mashed
2 eggs
3 tablespoons butter, melted & cooled
1 teaspoon vanilla

 

Dry Ingredients:

2 teaspoons baking powder
1 whole wheat pastry flour
½ cup oat bran (they sell it at Trader Joe’s)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch kosher salt
**toppings: sliced bananas, butter, maple syrup & sprinkling of unsweetened coconut.

Directions: Heat waffle iron. Combine wet ingredients and whisk well to combine.  Combine dry ingredients into a large bowl and form a well in the center. Add the wet mixture to the well and fold in with the dry. Don’t worry if there are a few lumps. Let sit for about 5 minutes to allow batter to thicken. When iron is hot, spray lightly with non-stick spray. Spoon 1/2 to 3/4 cup of batter onto the center of the iron and cook until a golden brown crust forms.   Top with butter, sliced bananas, maple syrup & a sprinkling of unsweetened coconut.


Lemons for Lindsey

Coconut Cream Cheese Filling

My good friend Lindsey’s birthday was last weekend and I know my practical gifts of love made in my kitchen are always a sure hit with people, especially Lindsey who never hesitates to sing my culinary praises.  In fact, if I’m feeling a bit blue, I can ask Lindsey what she liked about my latest creation & by the end—I’m encouraged.  Ya know, sometimes it doesn’t take much.

When I asked Lindsey what her favorite type of flavors or desserts were she said, “Lemon, not pie or cake–not so much!”  Well, I understood what she was talking about.  Because I really like lemon desserts, but lemon meringue & a lemon cake (or should I say lemon filling) doesn’t sit well with me.  I do like lemon curd though & lemon tart; however, the meringue atop a lemon pie is so sad most of the time.  And the lemon filling in cakes is typically poorly done.  I knew what she needed was lemon sandwich cookies, but all the recipes you would come across for lemon sandwiches are the rolled out kind and this tired mama wasn’t feelin’ it after putting my girls down for bed & cleaning up the chaotic remains.

So after perusing my cookbooks I came across this Vanilla Sugar Cookie and knew it could easily be adapted to suit that lemon hankering I was seeking.  I thought I would make two different kinds of frosting to spice things up a bit.  And since I wasn’t about to go and buy more cream cheese than what my fridge was holding, I did what any inventive baker would do–split it in half & say a blessing to see if the frosting would multiply like the loaves & fish.  Some had lemon & some had coconut filling.  And I would say both hit a great spot with just the right amount of lemon in the cookie.  Ben even said, “These are pretty good for a lemon cookie, because I don’t like lemon cookies.”  And he ate more than one.

Lemon Cream Cheese Filling

Lemon Sandwich Cookies with Coconut & Lemon Filling (printable recipe)

I was inspired by the Vanilla Sugar Cookie in The Good Cookie Cookbook.  I wanted to make a lemon cookie and used two different fillings.  One is a lemon filling, while the other is coconut filling.  You choose what you like best..or do both!

Cookie Ingredients

1 cup granulated sugar
zest from one lemon (about 2 Tb)
5 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
2 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
½ tsp lemon essence
squeezed juice of one half lemon
Coarse sugar (turbinado) for sprinkling

Coconut Filling Ingredients & Lemon Filling Ingredients

½ cup unsalted butter (1 stick)
6 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp coconut extract
1 cup sweetened coconut
½ to 1 tsp lemon essence

Directions for cookies: Preheat the oven to 375.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or Silipat.

Put the granulated sugar into a bowl and add the lemon zest to the sugar.  Using your fingers to rub the zest into the sugar, in order to get as much of the oil out of the zest as possible.  Set aside.  In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, & salt and set aside.

In a mixer bowl, add the butter and beat on medium speed for about 1 minute.  Add powdered sugar & the lemon zest sugar to the butter, beat on medium speed for 3 minutes, till the mixture is light & fluffy.  Turn off the mixer and add one egg at a time, briefly beating at low speed just until the egg is combined.  Add lemon essence & lemon juice and mix for about 10 seconds.  With mixer on low, slowly add dry ingredients until it’s all combined.

Put about ½ cup of coarse sugar in a bowl, then take the other half of the lemon and do one light squeeze onto the sugar.  It will get the sugar a bit wet, but not drenching it.  Have your hands lightly wet, put one tablespoon of dough in your hand and roll it to make a ball.  Continue doing this placing the rolled dough 2 inches apart on the lined baking sheet.  Either roll the balls around in the lemon turbinado sugar or sprinkle the lemon turbinado sugar on top.  Lightly press down on each ball, so you’re making them into a circle (not too much & not too little either).  Bake for 9-11 minutes.

Put on a cooling rack and let them cool for about 5 minutes.  Remove and put on aluminum paper.  Meanwhile, make the frosting.

Directions for Frosting: Beat the butter in your stand mixer on medium speed for 1 minute.  It should be light & fluffy.  Now add the cream cheese in halved pieces and beat for 2 to 3 minutes, still on medium speed.  Turn mixer down to low and slowly add powdered sugar.  Once the powdered sugar has been fully incorporated, then turn up the speed to medium and beat for an additional 30 seconds.

Get out a medium bowl and scoop out 1/3 of the frosting.  Add ½ tsp of lemon essence to the bowl and mix thoroughly.  Set aside and there is your lemon frosting.

Add the 1 cup sweetened coconut & 1 tsp coconut extract, mix thoroughly and there is your coconut frosting.

Assembling:
You might have assorted sizes, so match up the ones most similar and begin frosting by putting about 1 tablespoon of frosting on each cookie smoothing it out and put another cookie on top.  Then eat one or two to sample, so you can attest to their goodness to your family & friends.


Gluten-Free Coconut Chocolate Cupcakes

I have a lot of deep thoughts and reflections, but honestly, right now I don’t have any at the tip of my tongue (or should I say tip of my fingers?).  Most of them revolve around this Lenten season.  I have been thinking about the item (or items) I would give up.  However, I never solidified anything, except…making a commitment to eat beans & rice for the next forty days (aside from weekends) for dinner.  I was inspired by Sarah from In Praise of Leftovers (but I can’t seem to find the post).  It made me want to meditate upon the simplicity of eating & life.

However, Lent is not only about giving something up, but as our pastor said at the Ash Wednesday service, “it’s also about our active role as well.”  So I am reflecting, meditating and actively pursuing words of encouragement, praise & thankfulness.  I am shedding off complaints, gossip, tone of voice and a raised voice.  I want to be that woman, that wife, that mom.  That is what I actively seek in this season.  I envisioned a closet full of boxes that need to get thrown out, not even donated, just thrown out, in order to make room for what really matters.  And in my closet of heart & mind, I have kept boxes of trash that tear down and continue old cycles.  But I have sensed God saying last night during the service that “holiness” is really who He is.  And ya know what?  I want that.  I seek holiness.  I seek to throw out the cluttered boxes collecting dust and preventing room for the sun to shine in and new life to breathe in.  What are you actively seeking?  What are your boxes and what is the sun waiting to pour in?

I know that cupcakes aren’t holy and they probably just lead to other cluttered boxes on the scale.  But really, sometimes it’s eating cupcakes that can help alleviate some of the stress–right?  Unless of course, you’re fasting.  My friend Tina is gluten-intolerant and happens to work with Ben, so I’m lucky to see her more often; as well as, find gluten-free treats to bring just for her.  These were what I brought yesterday and she says they’re some of the best.

Gluten-Free Coconut Cupcakes with Chocolate Ganache (printable recipe)

This recipe is adapted from Sweet & Natural.  I wanted to use ganache rather than a buttercream.  And since the recipe used coconut flour, I figured it needed all of the goodness, which coconut contributes.  Sorry you non-coconut loving people and sorry you’re missing out on a very good thing.

Cupcakes:

  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (melt it in a microwave)
  • 1/2 cup agave nectar
  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract

Chocolate Ganache:

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate

Preheat the oven to 375*F.  Spray mini cupcake pan with cooking spray (or coconut oil) and set aside.  In a large bowl, mix together coconut flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking soda.  In a separate bowl, mix together eggs, oil, agave and coconut extract until well-combined.  Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until blended.  Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for about 10 minutes.

While cupcakes are cooling, prepare ganache.  Put either semi-sweet chips in a bowl or chopped semi-sweet in a bowl.  Heat cream over medium heat.  Once it hits a boil, turn the heat off and pour over the chocolate chips.   Whisk until it is completely combined.  Let the ganache cool and solidify, which can take a couple hours.  However, you can choose what the texture of your frosting will be.  Makes 18 to 24 mini cupcakes.