Gluten Free Peach Coffee Cake

As the winter weather rages on I have taken to baking with one of my favorite summer ingredients….  fresh juicy peaches.  Of course it has to warm me up on the inside so what better way to use peaches than in a coffee cake?  And of course my peaches weren’t fresh off the tree either.  But I still love the taste of peaches and it reminds me of warm, sunny days.  I’m grasping at anything to save me from these crappy snowy bitter-cold days that never seem to end.  I did happen to see a groundhog the other day running under the trees out back.  Spring is surely on its way… it’s just taking its sweet ol’ time!!  I promise this coffee cake will make you feel better (at least for a little while)!! Continue reading

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Blueberry Baked Oatmeal and Bunnies

This past weekend we attended the Loudonville Street Fair.  Street fairs are better than regular fairs (if that makes any sense).  First of all, they’re free!  Second of all, they’re free!  Okay, I know I repeated myself but you’ve gotta love free.  Sometimes I get a little aggravated paying $6.00 per person to get into the fairgrounds to walk around and see a few animals, get bullied by the crowds, pay an extra $2.00 per ride per person, and go home hungry because you can’t find any good food to eat.  Not that I’m bitter or anything.  But with a street fair, you walk in and enjoy.  After you’ve spent an hour or two and there’s nothing left to see, you don’t mind leaving because you don’t feel like you’ve wasted your money.  Call me frugal.

Amy at Loudonville Street FairA rare (really rare) picture of me.  Usually I’m the one behind the camera.

That’s me, standing by the Porta Potty.  Yep.

We went to the fair on a mission.  We were watching our friends show their rabbits. Both of the kids went home with a ton of ribbons and a few trophies.  Just another day on the showing circuit for them.

Rabbit show at Loudonville Fair

Winning rabbit of the show!

We had a little fun “posing” the fluffy bunnies too!

Rabbits at Loudonville Fair

Posing the show bunny

Lexie managed to get in a little bit of training on how to properly hold a rabbit.

You should hold them like a football, with their head tucked into your armpit (poor bunny) and your arms supporting them underneath.  This makes the rabbit feel secure.  Not quite sure what it has to do with a football, but I suppose that’s why you’ll find me baking instead of watching the games.  I’m pretty sure I’ve never taught my kids how to hold a football either.  Oops!  See, you just never know what skills to teach your kids and what they might need them for.  Football = Rabbit shows!?

Rabbit showing at Loudonville Fair

Learning how to hold a rabbit like a football!

Congratulations to the kids on their winning bunnies and winning showmanship!  And thanks again for all the tips!

Last night I made Blueberry Baked Oatmeal for dinner.  Yes, you heard right – dinner!  Todd had a late night at work and I wanted something easy with leftovers.  I heart leftovers!  And since my Grammy got me thinking about baked oatmeal…

Blueberry Baked Oatmeal

Blueberry Baked Oatmeal

Blueberry Baked Oatmeal

  • 4 1/2 cups of oatmeal (Not instant. We use certified gluten free oats)
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar (I use coconut palm sugar)
  • 1 cup butter, melted
  • 3 cups milk (we use Silk Almond unsweetened vanilla)
  • 2 eggs, beaten (fresh duck eggs, of course!)
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp cinnamon (depending on how cinnamony you like it!)
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen blueberries

I’m a lazy baker.  SOOOO… I take a glass 9 x 13 baking dish, put my 2 sticks of butter in there, and pop it in the microwave for a minute to melt the butter.  Then I throw all the remaining ingredients in there and mix it up right in the baking dish.  You don’t even really need to measure the baking soda, salt, cinnamon, or nutmeg.  Sprinkle it in there and don’t worry about it.  Bake it in a 375 degree oven for about 30 minutes or so and enjoy!  You can even mix it all up, throw it in the refrigerator, and bake it in the morning.  That’s my idea of baking!

Blueberry baked oatmeal

Piece of warm fresh-from-the-oven blueberry baked oatmeal

If you look really close at the picture, you can see the steam coming off the oatmeal!  This stuff doesn’t last long around here.  Nik says he could eat it every day.  The great thing is that you don’t need any additional sweeteners or toppings.  Okay, I like to add a little more cinnamon and a dribble or two of milk.  Everybody else eats it just the way it is.  I’m thinking of trying it with apples and cinnamon or maybe peaches.  Like those little packets of instant oatmeal.  Only better.

Speaking of oatmeal, it’s snack time and I’m pretty sure there was a piece left over in the frig….

Have you made a different variation on baked oatmeal?  I’d love to hear some of your recipes and suggestions!

Turkey Day Preparations

I must admit that country life agrees with me.  Usually by now I’m getting into a frenzy over all the things I need to get done for the holidays.  Not this year.  Simplify, remember?  I’m off to a pretty good start.

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After feeding and releasing the animals, I came in and baked up some Blueberry Cream Biscuits with Blueberry Sauce.  Yummy!  I was even nice enough to save Nik a big piece since he was out deer hunting.  Such a good mom! *cough*  I found the recipe in Better Homes and Gardens and threw it in a file where it sat for months (possibly years) before I finally tried it.  I just replaced all-purpose flour with a gluten free flour mix and “Tadaa”!  Definitely a keeper.

I finished the Jewel Fudge that I started last night.  Todd loves fudge.  Especially this fudge.  Me, not so much.  Never been a fudge junkie.  But this particular fudge he has to have every year around the holidays.   Thank goodness you can only find the fake cherries when the fruit cakes come out for the year.  Ok, thatJewel Fudge 001 doesn’t sound good… Otherwise I’d be making this stuff all year long.  He’s getting pretty smart though, since the cherries are all dried and preserved he said we could buy a bunch and save them for the rest of the year.  Yay!!  Thanks for the recipe Sandi!!

We had to stop and watch the guineas.  They were flying to the top of the barn.  Such big birds!!!  They still won’t wander away from the pasture though.  Once or twice a couple of them found their way over the fence but they just stood at the fence and screamed until somebody herded them back in.  They definitely don’t like to be separated!032 The boys are out in the pasture working.  We got a huge load of sand so that the ducks don’t make so much yuck when we get wet weather.  The ducks love the mud, the chickens not really.  The girls are going to start baking some pumpkin cookies and maybe a spiced pumpkin cheesecake if we get around to it.  I’m going to mix up an eggnog coffee cake to put in the refrigerator tonight so that I can just pop it in the oven for morning.  One less thing to do tomorrow.

We also get to use our homemade vanilla!  We started this project in the beginning of October so it should be good.  Get yourself a bottle of rum or brandy (any hard alcohol will work) and about a dozen vanilla beans.  Slice the beans and drop them in the bottle.  Allow to sit for 6 weeks or so, shaking the bottle every so often.  Not exactly a science, is it?!  Once we’ve actually used it, I’ll let you know what I think.  I’m definitely going to filter it, the beans have left little floaters that I’ not too sure about!

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Other than that, I am going to relax this evening and watch a movie.  The kids want it to be zombie night, we’ll see…