Daring Bakers Go Vegan!

Did hell freeze over? Nah. But there was a surprising lack of a dozen eggs and copious amounts of buttercream, with this months Daring Bakers, as seen in many of the past challenges.
Chosen by Natalie and Shellyfish, these lavash crackers and an accompanying dip, had to be kept within the perimeters of being vegan and possibly even gluten-free.

A simple recipe but long overdue. It’s relatively hands off, quick and perfect for impressing guests and serving some of this autumn’s great preserves.

With my disabled back, I’ve found myself slow cooking and preserving the summer harvest more than usual. Typically canning might be considered time consuming or precise, but I’ve been cooking, roasting and caramelizing and quickly canning once everything is nice and sticky.

For this batch of lavash crackers, I popped open my jars of roasted fig with caramelized sweet onion spread and a purple pepper jelly. However, with so many great topping suggestions, like cinnamon or caraway, I also tried a rosemary sea salt with pumpkin seed combo – yummy.

For more pictures and the full recipe, check out my other blog, Food+Photography or the many, many other Daring Bakers blogs.

Surpisingly Easy Hors D’oeuvres That Don’t Involve Opening a Chip Bag.

I don’t know about you, but I typically go one of two ways when I’m on hors D’oeuvres duty; Chips and dip or stress with what will impress.

I like entertaining and I quite like the reputation that guests don’t need to eat before a gathering at my place. Lately I’ve found a few speedy plates that are quick to keep everyone happy and you chatty while you catch up with company.

The eggplant caviar only takes a bit of prep time with the roasting but with a food processor, everything was so speedy quick that I also threw together some whole grain flat bread in the meantime. Sure, you could buy crackers but this way, you not only know what’s in them, but it’s up to you and your taste buds to add what goes on them. Roll them out and cut them into dainty shapes or go fast and fun and leave them just so. They’re thin and crisp and cracking a piece off to spread some paté just lays things back a little.

Continue reading Surpisingly Easy Hors D’oeuvres That Don’t Involve Opening a Chip Bag.

Whole Grain Crackers


1/2 Cup Whole or Twelve Grain Cereal
1/2 Cup Boiling Water
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Sugar
1/3 Cup Vegetable Shortening
1/3 Cup Soy Milk, or water
1 1/2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour

Pour the boiling water over the cereal to soften
Let sit 20 – 30 minutes.
In a food processor combine flour, salt, sugar.
Cut in the shortening until it is blended into a crumb consistency.
Add the moistened cereal then through the feed tube, drizzle in the milk, bringing the dough together into a soft ball.
Cut the dough two disks and quarter each of those leaving you with eight pieces.
Heat the oven to 400ºF.
Roll each piece as thinly as possible between two pieces of parchment paper.
If desired, lightly spray the rolled dough with oil and top with any desired combination of truffle salt, sea salt and rosemary or parmesan and black pepper.
Bake for 8 – 9 minutes; until crisp but barely golden, watching as they brown quickly.