Top Secrets to Tasty Gluten-Free Baking

 

Gluten-free baking — think it’s impossible? Think again!

People choose to go gluten-free for a variety of reasons. Doctor’s orders, better digestion or healthier lifestyle choices always seem to top the list. Just one sweep through the grocery store and you’ll find plenty of options for gluten-free eating. If you love the art of baking at home, you’re not limited there, either. Many people think they have to kiss baking goodbye when they go gluten-free, but your oven doesn’t have to go into retirement the moment you switch.

Top Secrets for Gluten-Free Baking

  • Bigger is NOT better. Smaller batches crumble less than trying to push out three or four dozen cookies at once, for example.
  • Get sticky. Gluten is a sticky agent, so adding some gelatin or xanthan gum to your pizza dough will hold your crust together better.
  • Reduce the heat. Lower your oven temperature by about 25 degrees to keep your gluten-free baked goods from browning too quickly.
  • Be a flour chemist. Combine 2-3 different grains for the perfect baking mix. Try sorghum flour, brown rice flour, white and sweet rice flour, millet flour, buckwheat flour, quinoa flour, certified gluten-free oat flour and teff flour.

This chart helps explain the flavor profiles of different flours.

InnovaFlourChart

Gluten-Free Fresh Baked Bread

Brown rice flour is the main ingredient in Clabber Girl’s hearty Gluten-Free Oat Bread. One slice, and you’ll never miss another white or wheat loaf again.

Ingredients:

1 c. rolled oats (quick cooking)
1 c. oat flour
2 tsp. Clabber Girl Baking Powder
1 tsp salt
1 c. boiling water
1 c. unsweetened almond milk
3/4 c. brown rice flour
1/4 c. flaxseeds (ground)
1/2 c. dates
2 tbsp. roasted almond butter (can use coconut butter)
1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar

Get the directions!

Gluten-Free Sweet Treats

If you love the smell of fresh baked sugary goodness, heat up your oven and try out these decadent and delicious Dark Chocolate Coconut Oil Brownies or Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Sour Cherry Cookies.

Wiping gluten off the menu means eliminating the starch, not the taste. Living and baking gluten-free can seem daunting at first, but once you get the hang of things, you’ll discover a whole new world of favorite recipes.

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50 State Cookies

 

Crank up the ovens, break out those mixers and find the baking sheets… it’s cookie time. And if you’re still in a bind about which cookie to take to the holiday exchange this weekend, we’ve got you covered with 50 of the most unique cookies from the United States. Whether you stick to your state’s most prized cookie or try one from the opposite coast, these 50 state cookies are bound to be crowd-pleasers!

To find out what cookie matches your personality, take our cookie quiz!

Alabama: Alabama Cookies – This cookie has a little crunch both from the pecans and the rice crisp cereal. The cookie also has oats, so we find this a totally acceptable breakfast food.

Alaska: Wilderness Lodge Oatmeal Cookies – Alaska goes a little rogue from the traditional cowboy cookie recipe by adding some raisins. Any dried fruit will work as a substitute.

Arizona: Arizona Chocolate Chip Cookies – Lots of shredded coconut make this more than just your plain ol’ chocolate chip cookie, adding a little extra sweetness.

Arkansas: Almond Macaroon Cookies – With more than one cup of almonds, these cookies are more than just a little nutty. Enjoy with a fruity compote and you’re golden.

California:  Avocado Chocolate Chip Cookies – You read that right. These cookies have a little green in them. But avocados are good for you, so go ahead and treat yourself to a couple more!

Colorado: Cowboy Cookies – Cookies made especially for cowboys. And anyone else who enjoys oats, chocolate and walnuts in their cookies.

Connecticut: Spice Cookies – These cookies are sweet with a zip of extra flavor. It makes sense coming from a state known as the Nutmeg State.

Delaware: Strawberry Shortcake Cookies – Strawberries and cream are the theme of these sugary shortcakes. What could go wrong?

Florida:  Key Lime Cookies – It’s no secret that Floridians love their key limes. So we’re not surprised they add them to their cookie dough, too!

Georgia: Peaches and Cream Oatmeal Cookies – If there weren’t peaches in this state’s favorite cookie, it would be a crime! And the white chocolate chips? They’re just bonus flavor.

Hawaii: Hawaiian Cookie Balls – The crushed pineapple and coconut give these cookie balls the Hawaiian flair we all know and love.

Idaho: Potato Chip Cookies – Apparently in Idaho, potatoes have a place in every recipe. But don’t worry, this cookie has all of the sweet stuff, too—cocoa, peanut butter, coconut and chocolate chips.

Illinois: Date-Nut Cookies – If your family is a little nutty, these might be the perfect cookies to serve them.

Indiana: No Bake Cookies – No baking is required, just patience is as you wait for these cookies to cool. Can you resist the temptation?

Iowa: Iowa City Oatmeal Cookies - This isn’t just your any oatmeal cookie. With whole wheat flour, chocolate chips, walnuts and wheat cereal, these cookies cater to all you whole grain lovers.

Kansas: Amish Cookies – Standard sugar cookies with a twist— a hearty amount of powdered sugar.

Kentucky: Brown Butter Bourbon Cookies – Kentucky and bourbon? A perfect pair.  The rich bourbon accentuates the flavors of butter and vanilla.

Louisiana: Citrus Shortbread Cookies – These cookies are just as jazzy as the state they come from.

Maine: Cranberry and Orange Cookies – The bright red color and a sweet glaze makes these cookies perfect for any occasion, but especially so during the holidays.

Maryland: Chocolate Crab Cake Cookies – Your guests will not be eating crab meat in their cookie. We may not understand the name, but we do understand the desire for a chocolate-y, coconut-y cookie!

Massachusetts: Chocolate Chip Cookies – When you’re home of the original chocolate chip cookie, why would any other cookie be your go-to?

Michigan: Cherry Chocolate Chunk Cookies – Chocolate and cherries? Michigan knows how to make some good cookies.

Minnesota: Brown Sugar Butter Cookies – Brown sugar, chocolate chips, and toffee bits. Yes, please!

Mississippi: Mississippi Mud Cookies – No mud in these cookies; just chocolate and yummy marshmallows.

Missouri: Missouri Cookies – Fifteen minutes is all that stands between you and a delicious dessert.

Montana: Huckleberry Cookies – You put huckleberries in salads and pancakes, so why not cookies?

Nebraska: Rubber Cookies – As it turns out, rubber is code for molasses, cinnamon, apples and all sorts of other spicy deliciousness.

Nevada: Spicy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies – In the words of chef Emeril Lagasse, “Let’s kick it up a notch!” These cookies are certainly the way to do it.

New Hampshire: Orange White Chocolate Chip Cookies – When it gets too wintery to eat a creamsicle, put the flavors in a warm cookie instead.

New Jersey: Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies – Beautiful and bright, kind of like your holiday decor.

New Mexico: Bizcochitos (Biscochitos) – These state-recognized cookies have a little kick of flavor from anise seeds and brandy.

New York: Black and White Cookies – Famous in NYC, these cookies are bold and dramatic. Perfect for cookie lovers who can’t decide if they favor vanilla or chocolate icing

North Carolina: Sweet Potato Breakfast Cookies – A little pumpkin pie spice and maple syrup make these sweet potatoes even sweeter. And you can eat them for breakfast.

North Dakota: Honey Whole Wheat Cookies – For the grain lovers of the world, this one’s for you.

Ohio: Cappuccino Flat Cookies – We approve of any cookie that has coffee in it.

Oklahoma: Pecan Pie Cookies – Pecan pie is a favorite in Oklahoma, but pecan pie cookies are just genius.

Oregon: Hazelnut Cookies – Hazelnut coffee is good, but hazelnut cookies? Even better!

Pennsylvania: Chocolate Chip Cookies – You share a home state with Hershey, so this choice is obvious.

Rhode Island: Espiros – With only four ingredients, you can whip these up in no time.

South Carolina: Benne Wafers – Covered in sesame seeds, these cookies have a perfect, toasty crunch.

South Dakota: Triple the Ginger Cookies – One cookie equals three gingerbread men!

Tennessee: Tennessee-Style Marshmallow Cookies - Cookies with a marshmallow center and dipped in chocolate. What’s not to love?

Texas: Fritos Cookies – Drizzle peanut butter, corn syrup, and sugar over corn chips, and you’ve got a cookie.

Utah: Squash Cookies – Put this on your kids’ plate, and they may just eat their veggies. Especially when disguised in sweet cinnamon and nutty pecans.

Vermont: Maple Syrup Cookies – Maple syrup is a state staple!

Virginia: Candied Lemon Ginger Cookies – Don’t even try to resist this combination of lemon and ginger.

Washington: Apple Peanut Butter Cookies – Our favorite fruit all wrapped up in a tasty treat.

West Virginia: Ginger and Molasses Cookies – Warm, comforting flavors for the holiday season.

Wisconsin: Cheddar Cheese Cookies – With only three ingredients, these cookies are quick and simple, not to mention savory!

Wyoming: Wyoming Whopper Cookies – These peanut butter, oats, and raisin-filled cookies are enjoyed most after a long day hiking in the woods.

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“Spirited” Recipes – Baking with Liquor

 

Most cooks know that the secret to a tasty meat sauce is a cup of red table wine; but, did you know that alcohol can also enhance the taste and texture of your baked goods, too? Get creative with cake batter or kick it up a notch with tipsy toppings. You can even add a blast of flavor by soaking your fruit ingredients in a cold vodka or sweet liqueur.

Tips for Spiked Sweets

Now, baking with spirits doesn’t mean you can just go and pour a bottle of whipped cream vodka into your brownie batter and expect a miracle. Alcohol affects texture, moisture and flavor. It’s mixology at a whole new level. Here are seven handy tips and tricks to keep in mind when baking with liquor.

  1. Vodka makes a great flake. Add a couple tablespoons of cold vodka to your pie crust recipe for a dough that’s easier to roll out. The vodka keeps the dough from developing too much gluten, leaving you with a light, flaky crust.
  2. Alcohol alters flavor. Bourbon packs smoky and honey flavors, easy for the palate to notice right away. Vodka is subtler, better used as a wet ingredient than for taste.
  3. Bourbon makes vanilla bloom. Bourbon is the key to a smooth, oaky homemade vanilla extract.
  4. Better bottle means better baking. Avoid the cheap stuff and go for the gold. The better quality alcohol, the better impact it will have on your baked goods.
  5. Cream curdling cooking? No thanks. Alcohol can curdle cream, so it’s immensely important that you use a carrier when adding booze to creamy baked goods. Soaking raisins in rum, cherries in vodka and apples in brandy will result in all flavor and no curdle.
  6. Put the rum in the coconut and whip it all up. Add dark and smoky spiced rum along with savory coconut to heavy cream as you whip up soft, white peaks.
  7. Test before serving the kiddos. Worried about alcoholic baked goods around the kids? These recipes have a high burn-off ratio, but it’s always better to double check before serving up a slice to anyone under 21. Typically, after an hour or so in the oven, more than 80 percent of the alcohol has evaporated.

Baking with alcohol can be as much fun as drinking it! Try any one of these dishes out on your friends, and you’re sure to come home with an empty cake tray and a plateful of recipe requests.

Mexican Chocolate Bundt Cake with Tequila Almond Liqueur Ganache

Bundts are time-honored crowd pleasers, and this one will have your friends and family begging for the recipe.

Carrot Cake Chanukah Cake

The orange liqueur topping makes this cake even more decadent and delicious. Full of flavor and moist, without getting soggy or mushy, you won’t be able to stop at one slice.

Chocolate Raspberry Cake – flourless and gluten-free

Heading to a potluck party and not sure of any dietary restrictions? You can be a hit with this sweet and savory flourless cake, packed with a subtle rum punch.

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Baking and Crafting with Kids

 

It’s two weeks before Christmas, and you need to distract the kiddos while you finish some last minute wrapping (don’t forget our handy Printable Gift Tags!). Or, maybe you just want to see something in their hands other than a video game controller. Either way, Christmas break is the perfect time for kitchen and crafting adventures.

No longer tied to their school desks, children are turbo charged with good cheer while at home for the holidays. You can channel some of that excess energy and get the whole family in the holiday spirit with just a few easy craft and baking projects.

Christmas board

Felt Christmas Stockings

Fido and Tom Cat need stockings, too! Your kids can make and decorate personalized felt stockings for the four-legged members of your family. All you need are a few simple materials you can find at any drugstore.

Instructions:

1. Cut two pieces of felt into identical stocking shapes.
2. Staple the edges, then glue trim along to them cover up.
3. Add decorations, such as buttons, ribbon, felt, cotton balls… anything can be décor!

Cookie Cutter Ornaments

For the top of the tree or on the top of a gift, handmade ornaments can really amp up the holiday cheer. The best part is — the kids can do all the work! Sit them down at the table with cookie cutters, cardboard, glue, ribbon, markers and a hole punch. Don’t forget the toppings! Confetti, glitter and bits of wrapping paper make the perfect decorations.

Instructions:

1. Use the cookie cutters to trace shapes on the cardboard and cut out the shape.
2. Cover it with wrapping paper or white or brown butcher’s paper.
3. Decorate!
4. Punch a hole in the top and add ribbon for hanging.

Hot Cocoa Spoons

For quick gift (or an afternoon activity), whip up some easy hot cocoa spoons. Simply melt some chocolate (milk, dark or white…just be sure it’s sweet!) and coat the end of a plastic or wooden spoon, as if you were stirring the chocolate. Then it’s time to decorate! Sprinkle on festive jimmies, roll in crushed peppermint or add a few mini marshmallows. When you’re ready to drink, stir the spoon into a mug of warm hot cocoa for an extra chocolate kick!

Gingerbread Men

No holiday table is complete without happy holiday gingerbread men. The reward of warm gooey cookies is an easy way to get kids away from the TV and into the kitchen. From cracking eggs to decorating faces, gingerbread men are easy for kids to tackle from start to finish.

Ready to bake? Get the instructions here!

Festive Holiday Bars

All those piles of red and green candies are more than just snacks; they’re festive ingredients. You can mix them up in batter for brownies and cupcakes, or try out Clabber Girl’s amazing holiday bars. The taste of the crunchy edges and chewy center is only surpassed when the decadent chocolate morsels melt right in your mouth!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup shortening
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons Clabber Girl Baking Powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups colored chocolate candy pieces

Get the directions here!

Really want to go nuts? Try it with pecans!

For more edible Christmas craft ideas – like Marshmallow Pops, Homemade Gumdrops and Reindeer Fudgefollow our Pinterest board!

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Bakers’ Basics: Holiday Butter Cookies

 

This is the fifth post in a blog series called Bakers’ Basics with Marcy Goldman. In this post, she shares a variety of butter cookie recipes that are always a hit at the holiday party! Here’s Marcy:

To me, speaking as a professional baker, butter cookies are exactly what the holidays are all about. The appearance of various types of butter cookies, popping up at cookie exchanges, the office and other holiday drop-in parties, announces the holiday spirit like nothing else does. Sweet, homey and simple as they are traditional, butter cookies never fail to delight. Simple as they are, they take well to so many variations; one recipe can be dolled up in many different ways.

Regardless of your heritage or your traditions, the incomparable range of this genre of baking is unlimited. It can be just a sugar-dusted, vanilla-less butter cookie, or it can be shortbread, spicy gingerbread, an anise-scented Greek S cookie, or definitive Bavarian, Czech, British, Welsh and French ‘butter cookie’ – all similar, yet all a little different. A great butter cookie can also be a roll-out and bake sugar cookie, a chill, slice and bake variety, a ‘ball’ of cookie dough (like ‘thumbprint’ cookies) or a spritz type of cookie.

Regardless of origin or form, a great butter cookie is replete with light crunch, light sweetness and purity of taste and tradition in each bite. They may seem homespun, but butter cookies are also elegant in a classic Chanel suit sort of way. The understated decadence comes from the buttery taste, pure vanilla, and often, especially at this time of year, the addition of toasted nuts, spirits and liqueurs.

Shortbread finger biscuits

Butter Cookies Ingredients – A Cast of Characters

All things being equal (a great recipe to begin with), what makes some cookies soar more than others are the basic ingredients. At the least, this is the time of year to invest in a new tin of baking powder, for one. Why leave your finest hour of baking to left-than-fresh baking powder? While baking soda never really gets old, baking powder does. So opt for a new can to start you off.

Then there are the four other main elements to consider: vanilla, flour, salt, and of course, the butter.

When it comes to vanilla, use the best, but use a light hand. Too much vanilla (measure carefully!) overshadows the pure butter taste.

As for the flour, cookies, holiday or not, thrive on unbleached all-purpose flour. It’s naturally aged and chloride-free, and the browning and spread with cookies that are made with naturally unbleached cookies is superior.

When it comes to salt, use sea salt or kosher salt. Both are pure and natural tasting, without the heavy iodine taste of iodized salt. Since a butter cookie is few elements, the taste of iodine would really become evident. So for salt, use one that is pure, chemical-free, and appealing tasting.

The last thing to take note of is the butter, of course. Use unsalted butter.  Beyond that, taste the butter beforehand. Never assume all butters are equal. I used to buy whatever unsalted butter was on sale. One day, a friend came over to bake, toting another brand. I tasted both butter on their own. The difference in taste was astounding! So these days, I look for butter on sale but also the brands that taste the best. Some varieties of unsalted butter have a more rounded, full dairy taste that does wonders in the final product. Tasting is believing, so remember to do that.

For all other ingredients, again: use the best. Best liqueurs, other extracts, freshest nuts and the most sublime chocolate and spices you can find!

Pretty Shapes & Holiday Packaging

What also makes holiday cookies so special are the pretty and varied cutters you have to choose from, as well as cookie molds. I always have nested cutters, both plain and fluted on hand. There’s also many types of single cutters of various themes: hearts, flowers, animals and geometric shapes are available from various suppliers, from the most utilitarian (and inexpensive) to beautiful copper cutters from craftsmen (Etsy is a good place to search). People respond to pretty baking so the ‘same old, same old’ recipe but in a new shape (and with finishing touches) is captivating.

Make holiday cookies small for gifts or nibbling or a bit bigger, for a bolder gift. Look for great tins, even vintage and antique ones, to pack the cookies in. The selections of pretty papers and wrappings are inspiring and make a cookie gift the ‘total package,’ so to speak. I include the recipe or a brand new cookie baking sheet or a bottle of pure vanilla with my cookie gifts to ensure mine is a gift that keeps on giving. For my own gift-able cookies, I go out of my way to sleuth out pretty cello bags to pack biscotti in. Alternatively, I buy a few huge glass cookie jars that show-off the cookies and wrap the jar in beautiful hues of cello paper and tie it with ribbons. Even a vintage blue large mason jar makes a beautiful cookie gift jar.

I collect butter cookie recipes the way some people collect fancy China teacups. Each recipe I’ve come across and re-created has a unique twist or taste that makes it part of my baker’s rogue cookie gallery and broadens the traditions of my holiday baking. I am delighted to share a quartet of my favorite butter-based cookie recipes to start you off this holiday baking season.

Happy Holidays, and as always, happy baking.

Cookie Swap Sugar Cookie Dough

The perfect sugar cookie dough is the foundation to any variation of cookie you can imagine. Add in ground nuts or spices or food coloring or citrus zest. But it all begins with this one amenable dough. This is crisp but tender and rolls like a charm. You can double the recipe as you like, refrigerate dough for a few days or freeze 1-2 months.

Classic Shortbread (with variations)

There are many recipes for classic shortbread. This is my favorite and happily, it is the simplest. Variations are always an option. These were tested with corn starch, rice flour, and confectioners’ sugar, but granular sugar was my preference, based on results.

Butter and Cream Biscotti

This cookie soars the with unrivaled, pure flavors of the butter and brown sugar. This is essentially biscotti with a shortbread pedigree. Serve them big and impressive or cut into smaller biscotti ‘blocks’ or cubes.

For elegant biscotti with seasonal flair, try this peppermint version!

European Butter Cookie Bars

Layered butter cookies with imported jam of any flavor (I favor plum or apricot but raspberry or cherry are popular) make a stack of cookies you simply cut and wrap or serve. A delectable, deluxe recipe that is especially helpful if you’re time-pressed.

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Hosting a Cookie Exchange

 

First time hosting a cookie exchange? Let us help! At a traditional cookie exchange, friends gather to try new recipes, sample a few sweets and maybe even enjoy a some vino. It’s a great way to save time, too. In the time it takes to make one big batch of cookies (and swap treats with your friends), you have a variety of festive cookies take home and enjoy. With a little extra thought and planning, the gathering can take your holiday spirit to a whole new level.

Step 1: Pick a Theme

It’s the holiday season, of course, but not everyone celebrates the same holiday. Last year, one of our Clabber Girl bakers hosted a cookie swap with a “memories” theme. Guests came with old photos of family celebrations and went around the room, explaining the pictures, while everyone sampled cookies inspired by these treasured childhood memories. There were a lot of laughs, and a few tears, too. Other theme ideas include:

Go Nuts! Cookie Swap

Try these Chewy Butterscotch Pecan Cookies, simple Almond Shortbread or elegant Chocolate Walnut Biscotti.

Cookies & Cocktails

Anything goes with this theme! We like Coffee Drop CookiesChocolate Chunk and Cherry Cookies or basic Sour Cream Sugar Cookies.

Mistletoe & Munchies

Celebrate the season’s flavors with Egg Nog Thumbprint CookiesChocolate Peppermint Cookies or a more subdued Black and White Biscotti.

Step 2: Invitations

A cookie exchange is about celebrating the joy of the holidays. The invitation is where you’ll let your 8-10 friends know the party details and set the tone for the event. Give them plenty of notice; about 4-6 weeks should be plenty of time. The invitation should also include:

  • Specs: The time, date, location and what you, as the host, will provide.
  • Props: Attach the invitation with a colorful ribbon to a wooden baking spoon, an ornament or a Christmas tree cookie cutter.
  • Swap rules: Let your guests know what to expect. Some rules include homemade only or nonperishable preferred cookies. Tell them how many cookies to bring (three dozen, or six?), as well as anything they’ll need to take the cookies home, such as plastic containers or sealable bags.
  • Exciting envelopes: Place your invite in an apron-shaped or a cookie sandwich envelope. You can even tie it to a mason jar filled with your favorite DIY baking mix.

Step 3: The Big Event

Be sure to set the stage by picking décor that sticks to your theme. You’ll also want plenty of colorful trays and cake stands on hand for displaying your friends’ handiwork.

  • Nice Package: A crafty packaging station with cute boxes, bright paper and festive ribbon is a great way to spark conversation and give your guests a special take away party favor.
  • Prizes: Turn your cookie swap into a cookie contest. Offer voting and prizes for creative cookie categories like best dressed, biggest flavor, most creative, best crunch… the possibilities are endless.
  • The Art of Mingling: Some of your guests might be friends and some may be meeting for the first time. Either way, you can keep the conversation going and the laughter flowing with scavenger hunts, holiday mad-libs or other games. Guessing games always bring a good laugh, especially after the second round of cocktails!

Make this year’s cookie exchange the most memorable one yet!

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Reinvent the Turkey: Thanksgiving Leftovers

 

You do all that work, spend all that time creating the perfect holiday meal, and there always seems to be enough food for the whole neighborhood. Traditional family dishes mix with new recipes, just like new family members blend right in with the aunts and uncles who have been bringing laughter to the table for decades.

So, when the main course is finally put away, what’s the best way to keep the festivities going? Getting creative with leftovers, of course! These incredible, flavorful recipes will create an unforgettable Thanksgiving encore everyone will love.

Breakfast & Brunch

Turkey may be the star at dinner, but potatoes can take center stage at breakfast. Use them to whip up some delicious Mashed Potato Cakes or a spicy breakfast hash. Don’t forget that breakfast is the most important meal of the day – hand out some Cranberry Sweet Potato Bread to those relatives hitting the road for a long drive home.

Soups & Sandwiches

On a chilly post-Thanksgiving weekend, try out this Turkey Noodle Soup recipe with leftovers from the celebratory feast. If you have more mouths to feed, try pairing the soup with a thick, hearty sandwich made from a surplus of meat from that delicious Baked Spicy Ham. Don’t forget to mix a little cranberry sauce into your mayo!

Dinner & Dessert

Leftover recipes aren’t just for the fully cooked dishes; extra ingredients have a use, too. Take a batch of Fruit and Nut Truffles into work on Monday or turn one of those seemingly endless cans of pumpkin into a mouth-watering Holiday Pumpkin Bread Pudding. Of course, we’ll always recommend savory Pumpkin Biscuits!

Want to add some heat to those cold turkey leftovers? Try this One-Skillet Turkey and Roasted Green Chile Pot Pie.

Reinvent your post-Thanksgiving dinners with creative ideas from our Clabber Girl recipes list. We’ve literally got hundreds, but here’s one of our favorites.

Turkey and Mashed Potato Shepherd’s Pie

This cozy dish is a variation of the classic shepherd’s pie and is a simple, easy way to put the two most common Thanksgiving leftovers to good use.

Ingredients:

1 pound leftover turkey – sliced
1/2 cup diced onion
1 cup leftover vegetables, such as green beans, corn or succotash
1 tablespoon Clabber Girl Corn Starch
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 1/2 cups turkey broth
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper to taste
2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 pound shredded Cheddar cheese

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a skillet over medium heat, cook the onions until they’re translucent. Add in the vegetables and stir until they’re warmed through. Remove from heat and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together broth, corn starch, ketchup, worcestershire and spices. Mix in turkey and vegetables. Spread the mashed potatoes on top of turkey filling and sprinkle with grated Cheddar cheese. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the top is browned.

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Bakers’ Basics: The Thanksgiving Table

 

This is the fourth post in a blog series called Bakers’ Basics with Marcy Goldman. In this post, she shares her best Thanksgiving recipes, both classic and modern! Here’s Marcy:

I love Thanksgiving for oh-so-many reasons. As a baker, I love this time of year because it’s perfect for baking (it’s just beginning to be chilly, so it’s cozy inside) and the full harvest of the land is upon us. There’s just such a bounty! Add the Thanksgiving gathering table to the mix, which is the best time to create amazing food, host and celebrate, and it’s easy to see why I’m so smitten. In fact, the only challenge is choosing what to make for Thanksgiving and culling it down to a manageable feast. There’s the turkey, of course, and all the savory sides, and as a baker who cooks, I want to strut my best stuff with the ‘mains.’ But Thanksgiving is also a time that I want to showcase the best desserts I have, as well as baking powder breads. Decisions, decisions!

In this month’s feature, I’m delighted to share some hallmark flavors and recipes for the holiday table. I’ve chosen a special recipe collection that is both sweet and savory, traditional and contemporary.

Overnight Parker House Biscuits

An overnight rise makes these flakey, ready-to-bake fresh, and just when you need them! Just cut and bake what you need (the dough holds for a few days). This is baking powder biscuit-easy fused to the heritage taste of traditional Parker House rolls. The combination of yeast and baking powder (but no kneading is involved) makes these biscuits extra light. Portions of dough can be baked (or fried) as desired.

Pumpkin Pie Cake Doughnuts

If you happen to adore old-fashioned cake doughnuts, this recipe has your name on it. Baking powder goes a long way to transform a simple dough into a crisp/tender doughnut that touts the essence of Thanksgiving in one whiff of a fresh batch.

Pendelton Pie

Pendelton Pie is essentially chocolate pecan pie that features a unique chocolate shortbread tart/crust. It’s both extravagant and delicious. There’s many Pendelton Pie recipes floating around, but my version is tweaked to perfection. It’s a perfect pie for Thanksgiving (Baker’s trick: a pinch of baking powder in the tart dough adds a bit of flakiness!).

Cranberry Orange Biscotti

This is a clementine-infused biscotti, dotted with fresh cranberries. Once baked and cut into sticks, it is then dipped in fresh orange juice, pressed in fine sugar, and baked once again into a crisp, sweet finale. A wonderful dessert for the festive table or a perfect gift.

Mulled Apple Cider 

This will take the chill out of the air, and it’s also a wonderful hostess potable to serve throughout the fall into winter, starting with Thanksgiving. You could also add a touch of vanilla extract to this, or even a few bags of green tea or chamomile. I serve this in glass mugs with slices of honey crisp apples and a cinnamon stick.

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Bakers’ Basics: Spices for Fall Baking

 

This is the third post in a blog series called Bakers’ Basics with Marcy Goldman. In this post, she shares her favorite spiced desserts! Here’s Marcy:

The Mistress of Spices, a wonderful novel (also a film) by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni is set in a lavish spice store where its owner, Tilo, is both spell caster and spice witch. Her domain is ‘the spices’ and her loyalty to them, in service to administering to others (especially the lovelorn), is admirable.

There’s just one problem: the ‘spices’ (an entity unto themselves) ask their mistress to abandon her own heart’s desires. This means Tilo can never fall in love herself and instead is married to the spices and their curative powers (spices are great in baking but they hardly are husband material). Tilo maintains that ‘everyone has a spice.’ Hers is sesame, and the man she loves? His is chili – oh so passionate! There’s a happy ending to this spice love story, but there’s an even better spice story going on in your own kitchen.

What spice are you? Fall is an excellent time to think about it. Just stroll down the spice aisle of your supermarket or favorite bulk food store. Or browse some amazing online spice shops; I fall in love with spices all over again just reading about the varieties to try. Are you warm cinnamon, exotic cardamom or perky allspice? You can be a spice-a-day for this season of hospitality.

Now recipes for cookies, scones, muffins, biscotti and more all call for spices – because not only do spices uplift your baking, but they’re a great counterpoint to the nip in the air. The only thing you mustn’t do when it comes to spices is use old ones or less than fine-quality ones.

New harvests deserve a fresh batch of spices, so freshen up your canisters and jars. Invest in the finest, fragrant spices you can find to make your recipes swell in flavor and dimension. Don’t use cinnamon or nutmeg in a recipe without first smelling it to see it’s viable. Stale spices ruin the baking, but fresh spices are gold!

Great home baking demands so little and delivers so much. That little bit of spice a recipe calls for might as well be one more jewel in the crown of your finished loaf, cake or cookie. Be a mistress of spices and you’ll find yourself master of your baker’s domain. And don’t forget, since it’s a brand new season of baking, to not only refresh your spices, but make sure you’re using a fresh can of baking powder, too!

Chewy Crumble Buttermilk Spice Cake
Mouth-watering, buttery and tender, this reminds you of New England B&B. Everything in this recipe depend on using the finest of simple things, such as the best quality cinnamon and freshest nutmeg. The chewy crumble topping is addictive; try not to just eat that and leave the cake!

Cinnamon Ripple Biscotti
These nicely crunchy biscotti whip up in a flash. Just invest in quality, fresh cinnamon and then text message the coffee klatch gals to come over quick! I’m so fussy about the cinnamon component that I order a selection of cassia, Ceylon, and Vietnamese cinnamons and mix them together for a hot, sweet, lively cinnamon blend.

Cardamom Rusks
Rusks are a nice, crisp cookie. These are gently spiced and fragrant in the way only something made with almonds, sour cream, butter and cardamom could be. A perfect cookie-jar cookie.

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DIY Mason Jar Baking Mixes

 

What could be more adorable than a sweet treat in a jar? Mason jar baking mixes are a fun, budget-friendly way to give the joy of baking as a holiday gift. The best part – it’s so easy to personalize. Get the kids involved for a fun afternoon project they can give their teachers or servicemen and women. Does your boss love chocolate chip cookies? Is your best friend a pumpkin bread fiend? These gifts show off your creativity, and your thoughtfulness.

Pecan Pancake Mason Jar Mix

With this recipe you’ll be dreaming about these fluffy pancakes long before you even wake up. Layer the dry ingredients in a jar, add a colorful ribbon and a thoughtful tag. Want to dress it up even more? Put wrapping paper on the removable metal disk on the lid to give the jar that extra dash of holiday spice.

Jar Ingredients:
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons Clabber Girl Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Don’t forget to write down additional ingredients and instructions on a creative label or tag:
1 egg
1-1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil

For each pancake, pour 1/4 cup batter on a hot, lightly greased griddle. Cook until tops of pancakes are covered with bubbles and edges appear slightly dry. Turn and continue cooking until bottom sides are browned. Yield: 12 (4-inch) pancakes.

Brownie Drop Cookies

Nothing says “I love you” like the sweet, savory explosion that comes from blending brownies and cookies. That’s right — brownies AND cookies. Just the name of this recipe is a gift in and of itself.

Jar Ingredients:
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup semi sweet chocolate pieces
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon Clabber Girl Baking Powder
One (4-ounce) bar white chocolate, coarsely chopped

Don’t forget to write down additional ingredients and instructions!

This mason jar baking mix makes a great centerpiece to a homemade gift basket – add it to a handmade kitchen towel, a pair of oven mitts and a batch of fresh baked brownie drop cookies.

Cranberry Orange Nut Bread

Cranberry and orange give this quick bread  bright flavor. Decorate it by adding a paper poinsettia to the lid or wrapping a red and black Santa belt around the jar. Add a little green glitter to the lid or tag, and you have the perfect DIY holiday gift.

Jar Ingredients:
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon Clabber Girl Baking Powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Rumford Baking Soda
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

Include additional ingredients and instructions with each jar.

Remember, what’s outside is almost as important as what’s inside. You can dress up your mason jar in a number of clever, colorful holiday themes. Let your love of baking be a gift that keeps on giving. Mason jar baking mixes make gifts that are both fun to make and fun to give.

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