Flourless Cake - A protein recipe with a twist!

Flourless Cake - A protein recipe with a twist!

Happy New Year!

I am not dead, and though it was quite a year, I did make it through 2018 - albeit without one single post on this page. It feels kind of sad to admit, but 2018 was a very busy year of not too much fun kinds of cooking or baking, and the most notable things I made were just sort of impressive ways to combine all the random things I had in my pantry or freezer.

Which reminds me, I could have probably posted one of my two renditions of tamale casserole (in which I used up 4 leftover holiday tamales by chopping them up and combining them with riced broccoli, beans, turkey meat, enchilada sauce and cheese to make a somewhat healthier dish that still paid homage to the tamale) or shown you how the majority of my “meal prep” lately has consisted of frozen vegetables and precooked frozen chicken, thrown together with a few spices and possibly a bit of cheese (though not the most thrilling to look at, very easy and reasonably tasty.)

But honestly, the whole reason I have not been posting anything is just that I have been SO dang busy. And sometimes just really tired from being so busy.

However, also in 2018…

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Peanut Butter-Raspberry Swirl Bars

Peanut Butter-Raspberry Swirl Bars

Don’t forget to check out this week’s most excellent giveaway – Quest Nutrition products galore!

Sometimes, the entire first 15 minutes of my morning is spent lying half-awake in bed.  I’m trying to pretend there’s no such thing as having to get out of bed and be an adult.  Also wishing for the cat to have a snooze button.

This morning though, I got right up, stretched, put on my Fitbit (can’t let my family win!), made some coffee (to become a whole person), heated a couple of these delicious things for my hubby’s breakfast, and then whipped up a batch of Peanut Butter-Raspberry Swirl Bars.

Um, did you catch that?  All of that was the first 15 minutes of my day.  Quite possibly the first 10.

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Black + Tan Hummus

Black + Tan Hummus

These days, hummus is like the new Nutella – a recent addition to modern American cuisine and becoming a household staple.

You know… hummus. 

The awesome creamy chickpea paste that’s ubiquitous among food blogs and foodie-hipsters’ plates.  You can find hummus served as an appetizer at many restaurants – not just Mediterranean or Middle Eastern ones; in every grocery store; and on a multitude of school kids’ sandwiches where the Jif used to be.

It’s taking America by storm.  Get on this bandwagon, already!

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Flourless Peanut-Butter Pizookie (v + gf)

Last night was my husband’s official birthday party.  The lucky guy had a whole birthday week this year, what with all the camping, lasagna, and cupcakes over the past 8 days – so we finished it with a rockin’ shindig (can you call a shindig “rockin’”?  If so, this one was.)  Friends came.  We celebrated. Ridiculous dancing happened.  And, as is the case with many parties, there was food.

I enthusiastically made pizzas, some wild frosted doughnuts I’ll be sharing with you in the near future, and a birthday cookie.  (I think people can tell if you don’t make food with enthusiasm.  I try to incorporate this routinely.)

Steve’s love for cake usually earns him an all-out frosted and candle-lit marble cake every year, but with all of this week's marbled cupcakes, coffee cakelets, and doughnuts, I thought even he could use a bit of a deviation. 

The only reasonable and prudent thing to do was produce a birthday cookie.  You might say a cookie is a cookie, but then you would be wrong.  This cookie is a pizookie, or a pizza-cookie, that has gone cake.

It has peanut butter (staple husband-food), mini chocolate chips, and chickpeas.  Yes, chickpeas – even I couldn’t make this one up.  It has no flour.  It’s super easy to make.  It is giant and soft and delicious and no one even cares that it is not cake, most likely because they pick up on the added enthusiasm.

Besides, this peanut-butter pizookie had candles on it that spelled “happy birthday” which led to some really phenomenal off-key singing.  Unfortunately, I neglected to photograph or record this part of the event.

Flourless peanut butter blondies made with chickpeas, vegan, gluten-free - fitcakery.com

Flourless Peanut-Butter Pizookie (v + gf)

Very delicious [slightly modified] recipe, the credit of the original recipe goes to Chocolate Covered Katie.  

1 can chickpeas (garbanzo beans) rinsed and drained

2/3 cups dark brown sugar

Heaping ¼ cup peanut butter

¼ cup ground flaxseed (the nutritious addition that provides the gluten-free structure of the cookie + useful in so many recipes)

2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

¾ tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. baking soda

¼ tsp. salt

Dash or two cinnamon

Chocolate chips – reserved until the end

Hey.  What do you get when you cross beans with peanut butter + chocolate chips?  Crazy good + healthy cookie! 

Hey.  What do you get when you cross beans with peanut butter + chocolate chips?  Crazy good + healthy cookie! 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

The cleanest-looking cookie comes out of a spring-form pan – the kind that has a clasp thingy to clamp shut on the bottom part and opens to release a cake or pie easily.  Spray one of these with cooking spray and set aside.

To make the cookie dough, very enthusiastically (because this is so simple!) throw all the ingredients minus chocolate chips into a food processor and whir away for a minute or two.  Take a rubber spatula and scrape down the sides of the processor bowl to make sure all the ingredients get combined, and whir again for another minute.  Transfer the cookie dough to a mixing bowl – or if you’re lazy like me, leave it in the food processor – and mix in the chocolate chips with the spatula.


I didn’t photograph these steps because I thought you might not need to see a food processor in action… again...

Scoop the chocolate-chip cookie dough into the spring-form pan (it is tightly closed, yes?) spread evenly across the bottom, and pop the pizookie in the oven for about 30 minutes until just slightly browned.

Allow to cool – unfortunately, a necessary step, but one I sometimes find myself not following – for about 10-15 minutes before cutting. 

(By the way, this is great with ice cream on top while it’s still warm.)  Mmm…