Gluten-Free White Cheddar Thyme Apple Pie


It is November, which means it is pie month! At least that is what consumes my mind. Although, pies are my jam and Thanksgiving is all about some pumpkin pie, I am planning on making a Croquembouche. Weird, I know. Some of the cream puffs will have pie inspired fillings, like pecan. Just because I will not be making pie for our family Thanksgiving does not mean I will be not making pies this month, though.

I love pies because they are rustic. Plus in recent years I have been really experimenting and playing with designs. Obviously this is can be seen in the picture of today’s pie. This excites me, because gluten-free pie dough can be trickier to use. There just isn’t the elasticity or ability to play like you can with a traditional pie dough. Like I love to braid. Braid hair. Braid pie edges, but I have to be able to braid gluten-free pie dough. I will not stop though, some day. I have learned that I can make these roses, though, which are pretty quick and relatively easy to achieve. They just add to the rustic beauty and add a touch of elegance. Make some pie dough with freeze-dried strawberries, raspberries or cherries and boom you’ll have pink roses. Maybe some turmeric for yellow roses. Add a bit of matcha to the leaves. You can really have some fun.

This pie, besides the excitement to decorate, I was pumped to play with flavor combos. Originally I was inspired by one that was a smoked gruyere and thyme apple pie. The price of gruyere was a little too much for me. Therefore I swopped the gruyere for white cheddar cheese. I will say you really can’t taste the cheese. What I adored was the thyme. I’ve really been wanting to bake with it for some time. Especially since I’ve seen multiple bakers try to use it on the British Baking Show. My husband was not so fond of tasting thyme in his pie. I pleasantly enjoyed it. I tasted it subtly in the beginning of the bite and it was just enough to me to make it interesting. Not too much at all. Plus it made the flavors more dynamic to me.

If you want to be daring this Holiday season, I would give this pie a try. And play. Play with your decorations. I also enjoy putting words or phrases on my pies. Sometimes I use cookie cutters for that, but many times I will cut them by hand (especially if I want cursive writing).

Gluten-Free White Cheddar Thyme Apple Pie

White Cheddar Pie Crust

  • 1 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1 1/4 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup shredded white cheddar cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp coconut sugar
  • 1 tbsp honey

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An Attitude of Gratitude


I once heard that if you only say one prayer a day, let it simply be “thank you”.

I do love me some Thanksgiving. Not because I am a Thanksgiving baby. Or the food. Holidays can get lost in the commercialization.  I love what it represents, THANKS. Gratitude shines bright in my life as an essential practice. So even though this time of year is synonymous with food and large gatherings and football and shopping, I like to go back to the name itself. Thanks. It is our perspective about holidays that matters. What it reminds us to practice daily in our lives.

Gratitude has helped me during my biggest struggles. I have said it many times. Practicing gratitude reminds me of how blessed I am. How much I already have. It allows me to fill blissfully content.

I go back to a conversation I had with a nice wood-worker two weeks ago at the farmer’s market. It is easy nowadays to get lost in monster of MORE. We want more constantly. More stuff. More money. More food. More ‘friends’. More time. We get greedy in our lust for more.We pack our schedules with more.  And then we become slaves to our want of more. We work more. We get lost in the cycle of a job. Chasing money, so we can have or seem like we have more. But then we never actually enjoy our time. Because we waste it at jobs that don’t bring us joy. Or we never take the trips. Or see our families. Or we are tired and grouchy when we do see them. Forget being present, we are ready to numb ourselves out by the time we get home. Have a drink. Get lost in TV. The nice wood-worker was telling me that he retired and started his little business. He also explained how he didn’t have nor did he want a website because he didn’t want it to become a job. It was something he enjoyed doing. And I think about this in my own business, because he is right. Spend time doing what you love. Be more content with what you have than constantly wanting more. Because this also can create a feeling of not having enough. And further of not being enough.  Continue reading “An Attitude of Gratitude”

Chocolate Pecan Cranberry Pie


This recipe I was most excited to make! I love pecans. I love chocolate. That’s two out of three major ingredients, so I believed I was due to make something stellar.

This also kicks starts the theme of this week: cranberry.

I have three lovely cranberry recipes coming your way. But I started with the best first. You still have two more days to prepare and get it together so you can impress with this beauty on Thanksgiving. Plus you get to be the showstopper who brought something different and unique.

People will want (NEED) to try it.

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Maple Ginger Pear Galette


I am guilty of getting caught up and stuck on something. It started with cranberry orange galettes (also I made three things with cranberries, another testament to my stuckness). And then I had an extra apple and extra caramel, so I made another one.

And then I had a pear left as well. I also had a recipe already ready for a maple ginger pear pie. Automatically I was drawn to making another beautiful galette.

I don’t know what it is, but I really enjoy these flat little pies. Plus they are great to take vending because they start conversation. People are intrigued. They are pretty. And they are freaking delicious.

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Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Slab Pie


I was super excited to make this pie when I first made my list of Thanksgiving Pies. I didn’t have baking pans (packed up while we are still in between apartments) or time and I ran out of ingredients for pie crust.

Finally yesterday I finally had time and ingredients.

I was so excited when this came out! Slab pies are my new obsession. This was the first gluten-free one I had ever made. Plus I got the lettering on. Plus it was sweet potato.

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Gluten-Free Maple Pecan Pie


Bonus recipe and pie today!

Mostly because I just made this, and I am riding the satisfaction of it turning out beautifully and better than I envisioned.

I am super geeked about this maple sugar I got at the market Saturday. That’s right, granulated maple sugar, not maple syrup. The taste and flavor is beyond. So this recipe is a mix of maple syrup (replacing nasty corn syrup) and maple sugar.

The crust turned out nice. I made it with lard, so it is undeniably flaky.

Plus I put this cute little lettering on it!

It smelled AMAZING!

There are only positive things to say about this pie right now.

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Chocolate Pumpkin Swirl Pie


My last pumpkin recipe of the week! And they are beautiful!!

Apparently chocolate and pumpkin pair together nicely, it wouldn’t be a pairing I’d think of first. I’ve seen some chocolate pumpkin tarts or triple chocolate pumpkin pies. I finally decided to give it a go.

There is something about a swirl as well. It is super easy and doesn’t have to be perfect, but it works out looking pretty.

These also had a nice texture and really elevate the traditional pumpkin pie.

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Caramel Apple Pumpkin Pie


It is pie season!

That means my slight obsession and love of pies is completely acceptable and beneficial! It also means my spare time and day dreams  are filled with pie ideas and of course baking them. Last week I spent Wednesday baking up all my pumpkin and apple combinations. Then I switched it up Thursday and made ALL my pies out of cranberries.

Not only do I have all these pies to sell, but mostly I made them to share with you!

This pie was a sleeper for me. I wasn’t as enthused for it as I was for some others (I was pumped for the Chocolate Cranberry Pecan I have coming later this week). I will be honest that the real lack of enthusiasm is because I am not a pumpkin pie fan. However, this apple filling was delicious! And  it harmonized beautifully with the pumpkin. It added more flavors and another texture. This all made it one of my favorite pies out of ALL of them.

Plus there seems to be some very traditional pies this time of year. At work I have been making apple, pecan, pumpkin and cherry. So it is nice to combine some, so you don’t have to make so many individual ones!

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Brussels and Cranberry Slaw

021I am such a food dork. Evidence: Saturday I stumbled upon the Bloomington Farmer’s Market (I was a little bit pumped to discover they still had their outdoor market in November) and I was EXCITED to  walk away with a tub of lard, soup bones, and Brussels sprouts. Initially my head was reeling with the possibilities of creating perfectly flaky pie crusts. Next up I was planning what to do with the Brussels sprouts? Normally I just toss them with bacon, but I thought I should branch out and make something seasonal. And thus today I made a little slaw for yet another holiday potential recipe!

Brussels and Cranberry Slaw

  • 2 cups Brussels sprouts
  • 1/3 cup cranberries
  • 1/4 cup cashews
  • 1 tbsp bacon fat
  • 1/2 medium onion
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • pepper and sea salt
  • Parmesan (optional)

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Butternut Pie

UNJ9tWSVry63ywr6qKmg-0595T2LA8qWOfqmDf6tfpo=w694-h524-noObviously I’ve been on a bit of a kick with butternut recipes lately. And today is no exception. I fully intended on taking these little guys to the market on Saturday, but for some reason they got left in the fridge. Which is good for you all, because then I could snap a photo and post the recipe here!

Move over pumpkin pie? That’s pretty much how I feel about this recipe. I have wanted to like pumpkin pie my whole life. I truly have. I gave it the cursory try on Thanksgiving. It’s traditional, I had to try some right? Still it just never lived up to the hype and expectation for me, although I desperately wanted it to. Butternut on the other hand, makes me a lot more excited. Just cutting into one, the feeling of success when I’ve finally chopped one up and it’s ready to be made into something delicious. Just the shear work, makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something.

When I had to make four pies for the Farmer’s Market Farm to Fork dinner, I knew straight away that one of the pies I wanted to do was a butternut one. Although on that occasion I had some hazelnuts handy for the crust. Today recipe I used pecans, but any kind of nut are doable. It’s really personal preference. If you are wanting a change this holiday season, why not go for the butternut pie instead of the pumpkin or sweet potato?

Butternut Pie

  • 1 small butternut squash, pureed
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup maple
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne (optional I like a little something different)

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