Sunday, March 18, 2012

Cupcake Love

Before I start drooling over cupcakes....

I was featured!

stylish once again

Thanks to Ann at Stylish Once Again for featuring my Citrasolv Dishtowel Tutorial!  

Now on to the yumminess of it all.

Since I went gluten free at the beginning of the year, I have been experimenting with all the different gluten free baking mixes and flours available at our local grocery stores.  Since I am a bit of a cupcake fanatic, I figured this would be the best place to start.  (Really this all just an excuse to constantly have cupcakes around)

The first mix I tried was a chocolate cake.  It wasn't great.  It was dry and crumbly and I was very disappointed.  Discouraged a bit and worried that I would never be able to enjoy a good dessert again.  But, I didn't give up.  Then I discovered a local supplier who makes several bread mixes, vanilla cake and the best all purpose gluten free flour.  So, I baked.  And baked.  And baked.  Here are a few of the creations I made...

Snickerdoodle Cupcakes

So far this has been my favorite.  I just added a bit of cinnamon to a vanilla / white cake mix and and a bit of cinnamon in the frosting.  They were so good!  In fact, I may have to go make another batch as soon as I am done writing.

French Toast Cupcakes

These did not turn out the way I imagined.  I made these from scratch using a gluten free all purpose flower. They were pretty dense.  I added cinnamon to a white cake recipe, the put an egg wash on top of the cupcake before they finished baking.  I added maple syrup to the icing.  They kind of tasted like french toast, but they were so dense it took away from the yumminess.

Mint Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

I made these in honor of St. Patrick's Day.  I used a gluten free chocolate cake mix and added chocolate chips to the mix.  Then made frosting and added peppermint extract and green food coloring.  The icing was pretty good (it doesn't take a lot of the extract to get a minty flavor), but the cupcakes were dry and crumbly like the first chocolate cake I made.  Maybe the chocolate cake mixes just won't work as well.

Hope I didn't make your mouth water too much.  I am just so excited to know that I can still enjoy cupcakes even if I am gluten free!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

GF DF Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread

When I decided to go gluten free at the beginning of the year, I was a little apprehensive.  Luckily, there are so many great resources available.  It has been a lot easier than I anticipated.  
I have a bit of a sweet tooth (meaning I don't think I can survive the day without some sugary treat / snack / dessert in my daily menu)  My biggest fear was missing out on all the yummy stuff, but not anymore.

I found this great gluten free all purpose flour at one of the local grocery stores in Kansas City and you can't tell a difference.  Now my new favorite thing to make is Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread.  Plus my 5 year old nephew couldn't get enough of it, so it is definitely kid approved!



3 ripe bananas
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup canola oil
1 egg
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups all purpose gluten free flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup dairy free chocolate chips (I used Ghirardelli chips)


Grease a loaf pan with shortening.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.  Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, mix together bananas, peanut butter, oil, eggs, sugar and brown sugar.
Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients slowly.  Mix until just combined.
Add chocolate chips and mix in.
Bake for 1 hour or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes then cool on a rack.

ThriftyThursdayModernButton1 Thrifty Thursday Week 66


Monday, March 12, 2012

Citrasolv Dishtowel Tutorial

I love learning about new ways to be crafty.  When I heard about Citrasolv transfers, I went crazy.  I started using it on everything I could think of.  I added a design to the seat of a metal chair (but once again I forgot to get a picture of it before it sold at the antique store), I added a few designs to some t-shirts and more recently I decorated some plain white flour sack dish towels.

A friend of mine recently purchased her first house.  I really wanted to send her a little housewarming gift and I immediately thought of Citrasolv dish towels.  Now, I am going to show you had to make your own.

Citrasolv (found at health food stores, I found it at Whole Foods)
Flour Sack Dish Towels (or any fabric or fabric surface if you aren't making dish towels)
Cotton Balls
Laser Jet Printer (Ink Jet will not work)
Scissors (or something with a smooth surface to use during the transfer)

Step 1:  Create your design. I created an Audrey Hepburn design with one of her quotes using Publisher.  I created a poster using the dimensions of my flour sack towel.  Publisher will split the design up into several pages that create a large poster.  The other way to do this (and probably the easier way) is to create parts of your design on each page and piece it together when transferring the design. The hard part about the way I did it is making sure you line up the design perfectly.
IMPORTANT:  Make sure to print your design in reverse.  The easiest way I have found to do this is create the design on Publisher.  Once you are done creating, click "Select All" from the Edit drop down menu.  Roll your mouse over the design and right click.  Select "Save as Picture"  Then open a new publisher project and insert the picture you just saved.  Then reverse the image by selecting the "Arrange" drop down menu, "Rotate or Flip" menu and select Flip Horizontal.

Once you have your printed design, lay it out under the flour sack towel to make sure you have lined up in the area you want it and you can see how the final design will appear.  (It's hard to see in this picture, but I promise it's there.)  Now, lay it out on top of the flour sack so you know where to transfer each sheet.

I like to start in the middle and work my out from there.  Set all the other sections of the design off to the side.  Don't mix them up, you don't want to forget which one goes in which spot.

The way these print on publisher, each sheet will line up to the next one with a slight overlap.  Make sure it lines up both at the top and the bottom to help make sure you end up with an even design.

Lay the sheet face down on the towel.  Wet the cotton ball with Citrasolv (don't soak it, you don't want to immerse the paper, just moisten it).  Rub the cotton ball over the printed part of the paper.

Use a smooth surface (like the handle of a pair of scissors) to rub the entire design.  This will help transfer the design.  The more pressure you apply, the darker the transfer will be.  When you think you have covered the whole area, hold one side of the paper in place and carefully lift up the other side to make sure it looks right.  If not, lay the paper back down (making sure it is in the same spot) and try again.

Repeat this with each page until you have completed the whole design.

I made a couple more so I can send a full set of towels as a housewarming gift.

I hope she likes these as much as I do.  I was so excited with how they turned out, that I decided to make a few for myself.  And now it's your turn. Enjoy!


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