Sunshine and Sea Salt » A Healthy Foodie Blog

If you’ve ever had pumpkin mac n cheese and loved it, then you won’t wanna miss this. It has all the creamy-cheesy- carby goodness without the pasta (or gluten if you’re trying to avoid) , and it’s perfect for your holiday table or potluck party. Because what’s a party without mashed potatoes, right?  9DB92797-B645-495C-AAEA-C61837D8230F

This beautiful orange concoction was inspired by a recipe found in Food & Wine magazine, because that’s been my favorite source of upcoming holiday inspiration so far. And I never would have thought to add pumpkin to mashed potatoes on my own. To make it mine, I added sweet potatoes for a bit of sweet, some cream cheese, bacon and Monterrey jack to make it extra creamy and a bit salty to balance all the flavors. Not only was I surprised at how well the pumpkin worked, I was pretty much licking the mixing bowl when everything was said and done. Kid tested too, so that should take care of any reservations you may have about giving this one a go. 

Here’s the recipe. We hope you like it as much as we do. 

  1. 2 large sweet potatoes- peeled and cubed
  2. 6 medium russet potatoes- peeled and cubed
  3. 3/4 can of organic pumpkin puree 
  4. 3/4 C grass fed butter-cubed
  5. 1/2 C organic cream cheese
  6. 1/4 C organic heavy cream
  7. fine sea salt and black pepper to taste
  8. 1 package responsibly raised bacon- baked in the oven @ 400F until crispy . Drained on paper towel lined plate and chopped into pieces. 
  9. 1 block organic monterrey jack cheese-shredded

Place cubed potatoes in large sauce pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and add a big pinch of salt to the water. Cook until fork tender and drain in large strainer. Add potatoes to a large mixing bowl with whisk attachment. Add pumpkin, butter, cream cheese, cream and salt and pepper to taste ( *note: you may want to add less salt than usual since the bacon is already salty). Mix on low speed, increasing speed as the potatoes break up and become creamy. Add bacon bits and mix for a few more seconds. Scrape sides as needed with rubber spatula. 

Set oven to 400F (or just leave the oven on after making the bacon). Scrape the potatoes into a baking dish and sprinkle with cheese. Bake until cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve. 

Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes
Sweet, creamy and cheesy pumpkin dish you'll want to bring to all your holiday parties.
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Ingredients
  1. 2 Large Sweet Potatoes- peeled and cubed
  2. 6 medium russet potatoes- peeled and cubed
  3. 3/4 can pumpkin puree
  4. 1/2 C cream cheese
  5. 1/4 C heavy cream
  6. salt and pepper to taste
  7. 1 package bacon- baked at 400F until crispy then drained on paper towel lined plate
  8. 1 block monterrey jack cheese- shredded
Instructions
  1. Add peeled and cubed potatoes to large sauce pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil on the stovetop and add a big pinch of salt to the boiling water. Cook until fork tender and strain in large strainer. Add potatoes to a large mixing bowl with whisk attachment. Add pumpkin puree, butter, cream cheese, heavy cream and salt + pepper. Whisk until smooth. Scrape sides as necessary. Add the bacon and whisk again. Using a rubber spatula, scrape potatoes into baking dish and sprinkle cheese on top. Bake at 400F in the oven until cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve right away.
Notes
  1. You may want to go light on the additional salt since the bacon is already salty.
Sunshine and Sea Salt http://sunshineandseasalt.com/
 
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Tomorrow is October 1st. You know what that means, right? Time to plan the Thanksgiving menu. You got it.  After all, this marks the beginning of the final quarter of the year and things are about to get real festive in America. Although, for our house, it’s not s o  much about the ‘things’ as it is about the food. Anyone with me? Give me all the beeswax candles, fresh picked table flowers, beautiful food + people to share it with and my little heart meter is filled to the brim with gratitude.  6A7F22D7-9108-4E70-BD5E-669EA8FBB11B

So…to keep things happy for everyone, I’m planning a little blog series to share what’s making it to our table this year. These recipes are tried and true here in the kitchen, and tested by picky taste buds, so I’m hoping it’ll make your holiday planning a little easier. Starting with this delicious Gluten Free Pumpkin Cake with Mascarpone Frosting. It has all the flavors of fall, and makes a pretty sweet breakfast if you have any left over in the morning. It can also be served with a steamy hot cup of coffee to make things extra cozy. 

What you need:

  1. 1.5 C Almond Flour
  2. 1.5 C Brown Rice Flour
  3. 3 tsp xanthan gum
  4. 2 TB ground cinnamon
  5. 2 TB ground ginger
  6. 1.5 tsp baking soda
  7. 1 tsp baking powder
  8. 1.5 tsp fine sea salt
  9. 1.5 C coconut sugar
  10. 4 large pasture raised eggs
  11. 1 15 oz can of organic pumpkin puree (yes, the entire thing) 
  12. 1 C Coconut Oil (not the liquid kind) 
  13. Nutiva’s superfood palm shortening 
  14. Parchment paper

Pre-heat oven to 375 F. 

Combine first 8 ingredients, whisk and set aside. 

In a stand mixer with flat beater attachment, beat the eggs and coconut sugar together until creamy. Add the pumpkin puree and coconut oil and beat until combined. Scraping sides as necessary. Gradually add the dry mixture until all mixed in on low speed. Scrape sides and beat a few more seconds. 

Using two 9 inch circle cake pans grease both of the insides, bottom and edges with superfood shortening. Then using a pencil and the bases of the cake pans, trace circles on the parchment paper. Cut on the inside of the lines so you’re not baking with lead… and place the clean circles of parchment inside the baking pans, so that they fit nicely on the bottoms. Then grease the tops of the parchment (using butter or shortening- I used a stick of grass fed butter) , then sprinkle a little brown rice flour in both pans and tap out any extra. Now pour in the cake batter. Being as careful as possible to divide the batter evenly between both pans. 

Bake until set and slightly  pulled away from the sides. You may also use the toothpick method to check the centers. (When the toothpick comes out clean, it’s done!) 

Once the cakes are done, pull them out to start cooling. Once cool enough to touch, remove them from the cake pans by inverting onto two solid surfaces. (I use large flat & round dinner plates) Then place in the fridge to cool completely. about 2 hours. 

In the meantime make your frosting.

What you’ll need: 

  1. 8 oz mascarpone cheese
  2. 4 oz organic cream cheese
  3. 1 1/2 sticks pasture raised butter (softened)
  4. 1/2 TB pure vanilla extract
  5. pinch of fine sea salt
  6. 3 C organic powdered sugar

In stand mixer with flat beater attachment beat the cheeses and butter until smooth and combined, add the vanilla and a pinch of sea salt. Set the speed to low and slowly add the powdered sugar until combined, thick and creamy. Scrape sides as needed. Transfer the bowl to the fridge for the frosting to set. Once the cakes are cooled, place about a C of frosting on top of one cake and spread around, then stack the other cake on top of this frosted layer. Frost the rest of the cake very thinly, beginning with the top and extending to the sides. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes to form a crumb coat (this seals the breading of the cake and keeps the crumbs from getting into your frosting) .* return the remaining frosting to the fridge until the cake is ready to be finished. Once the cake is done, complete the icing job, slice and serve!  882217B8-C868-40D2-81DD-DCF182492B80

Pumpkin Cake with Mascarpone Frosting
An autumn cake with the perfect amounts of pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger + a sweet and creamy frosting begging to be served with coffee. It will leave you feeling satisfied, cozy and so happy to welcome in the holidays.
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For the cake
  1. 1.5 C almond flour
  2. 1.5 C brown rice flour
  3. 3 tsp xanthan gum
  4. 2 TB ground cinnamon
  5. 2 TB ground ginger
  6. 1.5 tsp baking soda
  7. 1 tsp baking powder
  8. 1.5 tsp fine sea salt (we use the real salt brand)
  9. 1.5 C coconut sugar
  10. 4 large pasture raised eggs
  11. 1 15 oz can of organic pumpkin puree
  12. 1 C Coconut oil (not the liquid kind, and you don’t have to melt it)
  13. Nutiva superfood palm shortening for greasing cake pans
  14. 2 9 inch circle cake pans
For the frosting
  1. 8 oz mascarpone cheese
  2. 4 oz cream cheese
  3. 1 1/2 sticks of butter
  4. 1/2 TB pure vanilla extract
  5. pinch of fine sea salt
  6. 3 C powdered sugar
To make the cake
  1. Pre-heat oven to 375F . Combine flours, xanthan gum, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and sea salt in a large mixing bowl. Whisk and set aside.
  2. In a stand mixer with flat beater attachment, beat the eggs and coconut sugar until thick and creamy. Add the pumpkin and coconut oil and beat until combined. Scraping sides as needed. Gradually add the flour mixture on low speed until incorporated. scrape sides again and beat quickly one more time.
  3. Using nutiva shortening; grease both cake pans. Then using the bottoms of the pans, trace circles on parchment paper and cut inside the lines to make clean circles for baking. Place the circles inside the pans and grease with more shortening or a stick of butter, then sprinkle with some extra brown rice flour and tap out anything lose. Divide batter evenly between both pans and bake until set or until toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the center.
To make the frosting
  1. Using a stand mixer with beater attachment , beat butter until smooth. Add cheeses and beat until combined. Add vanilla and a pinch of salt. Turn speed to low and slowly add the powdered sugar. Scraping sides as needed. Place frosting in the fridge to set.
To finish the cakes
  1. Once cakes are baked and ready. Allow to cool before inverting onto plates, then transfer to fridge to cool completely. Once cakes are cooled. Begin icing the top of one layer, then stack the cakes and do a crumb coat. Return to fridge to set for about 30 minutes. Finish icing the cake and serve.
Adapted from Food & Wine Magazine (Best Potluck Recipes)
Adapted from Food & Wine Magazine (Best Potluck Recipes)
Sunshine and Sea Salt http://sunshineandseasalt.com/
 
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I know it’s a mouthful, but these are simple to make and totally vegan. Which means there’s no dairy or eggs, so even if you’re not vegan but have dairy or egg allergies you’re in luck today. They are also gluten free ( of course ) , need I say more? Okay well, I’ll make one more comment. Flavor and texture is something you may not even find in your favorite local bakery. Smooth and bread like, but not gooey gluey. You know the kind. Also, the kids here aren’t crazy about cooked blueberries. Especially the warm whole and juicy ones baked in muffins that splash in your mouth with each bite. But these won them over. And that. Says it all. Trust me. Oh, and I know. That was more than one comment. I’m working on math. Literally. Right now. As I’m writing this. Any other homeschool mom’s out there who are trying to constantly balance teaching, grading paperwork, cooking and housework at the same time? It is a circus, I tell you. But a lovely one. Most of the time. 

Anyway, these are for you. A recipe inspired by a dear vegan friend of mine, Michelle at The Vibrant Kitchen . She recently made the most glorious citrus cupcakes with the most beautiful blood oranges, and I knew something like that had to transpire in my own kitchen. I’ve been on the hunt for some blood oranges , but haven’t gotten lucky enough to snag some just yet, and since I had to try this recipe vegan style some way some how it was made to happen today. Although, I still have the blood orange version on my to do list, and may just make a trip into the city this weekend for that star ingredient, but until then . I leave you these. Cakes sweetened with banana,  and coconut sugar + a healthy dose of maca powder and fresh blueberries.  Finished with the sweetest lemon frosting that pairs surprisingly well with the rest. It’ll make you forget how free these are from such controversial ingredients. wink, wink. 😉  

What you need: 

  1. 1 C Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free Baking Mix 
  2. 1 C Almond Flour 
  3. 1 C Coconut Sugar
  4. 1 tsp Baking Powder
  5. 1 tsp Baking Soda 
  6. 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  7. 1 TB Maca Powder 
  8. 3 spotted ripe bananas 
  9. 1/2 TB vanilla extract
  10. 1/4 C Unfiltered Olive Oil
  11. 1 C unsweetened Coconut Milk
  12. 1 TB Unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar 
  13. 1 C Blueberries 

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two muffin tins with parchment paper baking cups. This recipe will make about a tin and a 1/2. So 18 muffins. See. Math. 

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the dry ingredients together. Flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt and maca powder. Set aside. 

In a large measuring cup, measure one cup of coconut milk then mix with 1 tb apple cider vinegar and set aside. 

In a stand mixer with the flat beater attachment add the bananas (peeled of course) . Beat until smooth. Then add the vanilla and olive oil. Gradually add the flour alternating with the milk. Begin and end with flour. (I don’t know why…I’ve just always thought that’s the way you do things based on a lot of other baking recipes.) Once combined, fold in the blueberries. Using an ice-cream scooper, scoop batter into individual baking cups and bake for about 20 minutes. Or until tops are firmly set. 

While those are baking. Let’s make the Lemon Buttercream. 

You’ll Need:

  1. 1 C Earth Balance ‘Butter’ baking sticks- they’re salty, creamy and you won’t be able to tell the difference, so don’t worry. 
  2. 3 C organic powdered sugar
  3. zest of 1 whole lemon
  4. 3 TB lemon juice

In stand mixer with flat beater attachment , add the shortening and beat until smooth. Add the zest, juice and sugar. You’ll want to add the sugar in small batches – unless you like sugar snow. Beat until thick and creamy looking. Refrigerate until cupcakes are baked and cooled. Then, add to a piping bag with favorite piping tip and decorate those cupcake babies. Mmm.. so sweet and citrusy. I just love citrus season, don’t you? XO 

 

 

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Hi, guys! Happy New Year!! It’s been a while since I’ve contributed to this space, but what better way to begin a new post in the new year than with SUNSHINE COOKIEESSS. That’s right; soft, lemony and yes- sugary sweet, but gluten AND dairy free cookies to put a little sunshine in those short and often dark wintery days.  A4B7B790-0D43-408C-B354-B3AD242F2945

These are a spin on the plain and simple sugar cookie with just a bit of lemon juice and zest, plus a nice lemony sugar glaze to make things extra bright. They’re quick to whip up and if you have people in the house other than you- I’m sure they won’t have a problem taking over clean up as a token of pure gratitude. Just don’t tell them I told you so.  😉 And if the cold and gray weather has gotten you feeling a little blue, that first burst of happy citrus to meet your nose is sure to lift your spirits. So let’s. get. baaaaking. 

What you need: 

  1. 2 1/3 C AP GF Flour – I use the mix posted on this site under the tab titled ‘Gluten Free Baking’
  2. 2 tsp baking powder
  3. 1/2 tsp baking soda
  4. 1/4 tsp fine sea salt- we like the Real Salt brand
  5. zest of one whole lemon
  6. 1 C Nutiva’s Organic Superfood Shortening
  7. 1 C organic granulated cane sugar
  8. 2 pasture raised eggs
  9. Juice of one lemon

Pre-heat oven to 375 F and line your baking sheets with parchment paper. This will make 4 sheets full of cookies. (to give you an idea) 

In a separate mixing bowl (other than the stand mixer) Whisk together the flour, baking powder, soda, sea salt and lemon zest. Then set aside. 

In a stand mixer with the flat beater attachment, add the shortening and sugar and beat until combined and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, scraping sides as needed. Add lemon juice, then gradually add the flour mixture until combined. Scrape sides and mix once more very quickly just to get everything fully mixed. 

Using a mini ice cream scooper, drop the cookie batter on the lined baking sheets and bake for 8 minutes. The cookies will spread so make sure you have enough space between each drop to allow for a little growth. 

Remove cookies from oven and let cool.

While you’re waiting, let’s make the lemon glaze. 

You’ll need: 

  1. Juice and zest of one lemon
  2. About 1/2 C powdered sugar 

In a small mixing bowl, whisk ingredients together until slightly sticky and smooth. You’ll simply use a spoon to drizzle over cooled cookies when ready. You can freeze the cookies or put them in the fridge to make the glaze set faster, or just eat them as is. We did both.:)and they were deliciously good. We hope they bring a little light into your day! XO

Lemon Cookies
A gluten and dairy free cookie that tastes like pure sunshine.
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For the Cookies
  1. 2 1/3 C AP GF Flour
  2. 2 tsp baking powder
  3. 1/2 tsp baking soda
  4. 1/4 tsp sea salt
  5. zest of 1 lemon
  6. 1 C organic superfood shortening by Nutiva
  7. 1 C granulated cane sugar
  8. 2 pasture raised eggs
  9. Juice of 1 lemon
For the Glaze
  1. Juice and zest of one lemon
  2. about 1/2 C powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 375 F. Whisk dry ingredients. Add shortening and sugar to stand mixer and beat until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, then the lemon juice. Gradually add the flour mixture. Scoop onto parchment lined baking sheets using mini ice-cream scooper and bake for 8 minutes. Allow to cool and make the lemon cookie glaze.
  2. Whisk lemon juice, zest and powdered sugar until smooth and slightly sticky. Drizzle over cookies with a spoon.
Sunshine and Sea Salt http://sunshineandseasalt.com/

 

 

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I’m just going to come out and admit it. I have a major issue with time management and punctuality. Things are usually pretty last minute with me and almost always late. This recipe is no exception, since I promised to post it weeks ago on Instagram, but…in my own defense, I had to make it again to record the measurements; something I’m equally bad at. But I did make it again. Yesterday. Just for you. So there’s love in the effort, you see. Even if it’s not perfect. 😉  B43C7B4C-E18E-4545-A239-2849CE3558CB

This banana walnut bread or ‘loaf of heaven’ ; is laced with cinnamon and sugar, plus a hint of nutmeg and just enough earthy nutty crunch to transport you to the world of twinkling lights, cozy blankets, and stories around a crackling fire. These flavors obviously remind me of autumn or even winter, but sometimes it’s fun to borrow magic from another loved season , and revive all those relatable emotions in the kitchen. 

So if you’re down for a little Christmas in July, let’s get dancing. 

Ingredients:

  1. 2 ripe bananas
  2. 1 C coconut sugar
  3. 2 tsp vanilla extract
  4. 2 pasture raised eggs
  5. 2 C all purpose gluten free flour (found on the blog, or Bob’s Red Mill Baking Mix works fine)
  6. 2 tsp baking powder
  7. 1 tsp baking soda
  8. 1/2 tsp sea salt
  9. 2 tsp cinnamon
  10. 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  11. 1/2 C coconut milk
  12. 1 C chopped walnuts
  13. 1 TB organic granulated sugar
  14. 1/2 TB cinnamon
  15. About a TB all vegetable shortening (Nutiva’s super food brand) for greasing loaf pan

Pre-heat oven to 350 F and grease loaf pan with shortening. 

In a large mixing bowl add flour, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Whisk together and set aside. 

In a stand mixer fitted with flat beater attachment; add bananas and coconut sugar. Beat until combined. Add vanilla and eggs. Beat smooth. Beginning and ending with flour; alternate flour and coconut milk to banana mixture. Once everything is mixed together well, use a rubber spatula and scrape sides while folding in the walnuts. Pour batter into loaf pan. In a small separate bowl, add the remaining cinnamon and sugar. Sprinkle and pat this mixture lightly on top of unbaked loaf. Pop in the oven and bake for about 45 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean from the middle. Allow to cool slightly before removing from the pan. Allow to cool almost all the way before slicing. Serve with softened pasture raised or vegan butter OR all. by. itself. XO IMG_3275

Cinnamon Banana Walnut Bread
A gluten free version of a world favorite.
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Ingredients
  1. 2 Ripe bananas - the ones with those cute brown freckles
  2. 1 C coconut sugar
  3. 2 tsp vanilla extract
  4. 2 pasture raised eggs
  5. 2 C AP GF flour
  6. 2 tsp baking powder
  7. 1 tsp baking soda
  8. 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  9. 2 tsp cinnamon
  10. 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  11. 1/2 C coconut milk
  12. 1 C chopped walnuts
  13. 1 TB granulated sugar
  14. 1/2 TB ground cinnamon
  15. 1 TB all vegetable shortening for greasing loaf pan
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 F. Grease loaf pan. In a large mixing bowl, add flour, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg and whisk together. Set aside.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with flat beater attachment, add bananas and coconut sugar. Mash together. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Beginning and ending with flour; alternate flour with coconut milk adding to banana mixture. Stop mixer and scrape sides with rubber spatula. Fold in the chopped walnuts and transfer to loaf pan. In a small mixing bowl, combine remaining cinnamon and sugar. Sprinkle and pat this mixture lightly on top of unbaked batter. Pop into oven and bake for about 45 minutes or until set. You may want to check center with toothpick to be sure center isn't still too soft. Allow to cool slightly before removing from loaf pan. Allow to cool almost all the way before cutting.
Sunshine and Sea Salt http://sunshineandseasalt.com/
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  • Christine

    Oh Mary, I know you hit again! I can’t wait to try this recipe!ReplyCancel

  • I am so glad you commented on my post! It fills my heart to see all of the sweet babies helping in your kitchen. What lovely photos (and bread!)ReplyCancel

    • Aw, I’m so glad I found you, too! Thank you so much for stopping by!ReplyCancel