About Jesicakes

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A BFA Painting and Drawing graduate gone cookie designer and decorator.  I bring my knowledge of art, composition, and color to pastries to create the perfect cookies and cakes for your events or occasions.
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Monday, November 28, 2011

Say Goodbye to Fall with Pumpkin Flan

This Thanksgiving I wanted to go a little nontraditional while still having the dessert feel like it fit the theme.  I recently celebrated my five year anniversary with my boyfriend Justin in Puerto Rico, and the entire time I was searching for good flan.  Still not sick of it, I decided to take a stab at making my own flan, having only ever made it once before over ten years ago for class when I was in 6th grade (so I probably had lots of help from a parent...and it leaked all over my mother's car...but that's a story for another time).  Originally I planned on making Queso Flan, since it was my favourite we had on our trip, but in honor of Thanksgiving I wanted to find a recipe with Pumpkin too.  This time my flan came out perfectly!  It was silky and creamy, full of spices from the ginger, cloves and cinnamon.  It had the perfect touch of sweetness from the caramel and the pumpkin, and tartness from the cream cheese.  This recipe is sure to impress anyone, and it was just as delicious, yet more complex, than the flan we had in Puerto Rico.  Justin brought it to his office and said it was a huge hit amongst his colleagues.  So if you have some cans of pumpkin still lingering in your cabinet, make sure you try this recipe!

Pumpkin Flan
Recipe adapted from Sticky Gooey Creamy Chewy
Made Gluten Free by Jesicakes
Makes 1 10'' pyrex dish, or 4 2-4 cup pyrex dishes
Ingredients for the Caramel
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup of water
Ingredients for the Custard
- 12 oz can of evaporated milk (I used 2%)
- 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 5 eggs
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 Tbsp white rice flour*
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp cloves
- 1/4 tsp ginger
- 2 tsp gluten free vanilla
- Boiling Water**

*I used white rice flour because it's mild and ground finely.  Brown rice would probably be okay but possibly affect the texture a bit.  You can also use 1 Tbsp of cornstarch (I just didn't have any)
**You will need a larger container to place your pyrex dishes in.  The flan bakes in a water bath.  I just used a large, disposable aluminum tin.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Gluten Free Cornbread for Thanksgiving

As I mentioned my last post, for Thanksgiving every year since I was in Kindergarten I've been making pumpkin bread and cornbread.  Last week I made my pumpkin loaf recipe gluten free, and today I tried making my cornbread recipe gluten free.  It turns out this recipe is the one on the back of the corn meal bag, but over the years my mom and I had altered this one too.  The result is a rustic, moist yet fluffy cornbread that has just the right amount of sweetness.  And it tastes just like the version with all purpose flour.  It's perfect with cranberry sauce (which I plan to make fresh for the first time for Thanksgiving) or even just toasted with a little bit of butter.  It's simple, easy to make, and a perfect side for your Thanksgiving table!

Gluten Free Cornbread for Thanksgiving
Recipe adapted from Indian Head Corn Meal
Made Gluten Free by Jesicakes
Makes 1 Loaf in a 8'' X 4'' load pan
- 1 cup corn meal
- 1/4 cup sorghum flour
- 1/4 cup brown rice flour
- 1/4 cup white rice flour
- 1/4 cup tapioca flour
- 1 tsp xanthan gum
- 3 tsp gluten free baking powder
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup + 1/8 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup shortening
- 1 cup of whole milk
- 1 egg, beaten

Monday, November 14, 2011

Thanksgiving Pumpkin Loaf Two Ways

When I was in Kindergarten we were all given two Thanksgiving recipes: one for Corn Bread and one for Pumpkin Bread.  Every year since then, it's been a tradition to make both for Thanksgiving.  Even when we do "nontraditional" dinners (in a family of half vegetarians there is never a turkey), these two dishes are always on the table.  Over the years my mom and I had tweaked with the recipe here and there, and the last few times I've changed a few minor components, but this last time I made it completely gluten free without really altering the flavor.  Also, this recipe doesn't require a mixer or anything.  And after all it was given to me in Kindergarten, so it's so easy a five year old could follow along.  This loaf is irresistible...it never lasts more than a few days.  While eating a little piece of it earlier tonight, I decided next time I want to make cupcakes, I'm going to try using this recipe.  It's moist, but still a bit cakey and not too dense.  It's filled with warm cinnamon and sweet bites of either cranberries or raisins.  And of course the star of the loaf is the pumpkin.

I'd recommend making it one of two ways (or well, three if you count my desire to make them cupcakes!).  The first is as slices as a side dish for your Thanksgiving meal.  It's also great this way year round as a snack or breakfast.  In this version, either cranberries or raisins are good but I think I prefer it with the raisins.  The second is as squares, topped with a cinnamon cream cheese frosting as a dessert.  In this preparation I prefer it with cranberries, and I sprinkle the top with some cranberries as well.  Or if you're like me, you pick one of the two dried fruits, and make half the loaf sliced and uniced, and ice the other half the of loaf for dessert squares!  Either way I promise it you and your guests will be taking seconds! 

Pumpkin Loaf: Two Ways
Recipe a Jesicakes original
Makes 1 Loaf in a 8'' X 4'' load pan
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 3 eggs slightly beaten
- 2 cups 100% pure pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie mix)
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup sorghum flour
- 1/2 cup brown rice flour
- 1/2 cup sweet rice flour
- 1/2 cup tapioca flour
- 1 tsp xanthan gum
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1 Tbsp cinnamon
- 1 cup of raisins or dried cranberries
*Since this recipe was originally made with flour, if you and/or your guests are not gluten free, just substitute 2 cups of all purpose flour for all the other flours and the xanthan gum.