Maple Whiskey Banana Bread

One of my very favorite smells in the whole world is the smell of a glass of Crown Royal Maple.  Whiskey and maple together – it’s absolute heaven.  My friend, Randy, set up his own little whiskey tasting for me earlier this year, and I could have easily sat there the entire time just smelling my glass of Crown Maple (and I did.. for a while.. until I drank it).  It’s just as good to drink.  So because I’m crazy, I bought an entire 1.75 liter bottle of Crown Maple a bit ago while there was a sale on it – you can never have enough maple deliciousness, right?!   I also can’t leave well enough alone.. so I had to bake with it.  And make my ENTIRE HOUSE smell like mapley whiskey goodness.  Oooooh, guys.  This stuff is good.

Who loves banana pancakes?  Because that’s pretty much why I had to make maple banana bread.  It’s like eating a banana pancake drizzled in syrup, but it’s not as messy, and there are crunchy walnuts involved.. all good things.  The whiskey doesn’t hurt, either.  Pretty much, this is your standard banana bread made 100 times better because of the maple (and the whiskey).   [Read more...]

French Silk Pie (with Gluten Free Option)

This year, I missed out on real Thanksgiving with my family and celebrated here in Buffalo with Alex’s family.  The week prior to Thanksgiving, though, we celebrated what we called “Fakesgiving” with my family back in Pittsburgh after my sisters, cousins, and I ran the Color Run.  It was our version of the Turkey Trot this year (and much more exciting, methinks).  I was then stranded in Pittsburgh for an extra week due to the snowstorm in Buffalo – even after doing laundry once, I almost ran out of clothes again, haha!  Because it was only supposed to be a weekend trip, I figured I’d get to share this pie with you right away when I got back to Buffalo, but alas, it was not to be.  Luckily, though, this pie is perfect for Christmas or anytime, as it is most definitely not a special holiday flavor!

Alex was a bit upset that he didn’t get to have any of this pie since he wasn’t down in Pittsburgh, and it went extremely fast for Fakesgiving, so I made two pies just for him.  He offered to take one to work, but then once he started eating it, he quickly changed his mind.  This pie is fantastic for chocolate lovers – oreo cookie crust, rich silky chocolate filling.  You can also garnish it with whipped cream, but we’re lactose-intolerant (and I honestly really don’t like whipped cream), so I opted out.  If you can’t handle a really deep chocolate pie, the whipped cream may be needed to cut the richness. [Read more...]

Apple Pie Bars (Gluten Free)

Earlier in October, we went apple picking and picked a whopping 70 pounds of apples.  Since I was on rotation, I made a few batches of my slow cooker applesauce, some apple crisp, and that was about it.  Thankfully, we have this mildly terrifying little cellar room in our basement that is the perfect place for keeping apples nice and cool, so I haven’t had to worry about our huge haul of apples going bad.  Storing my apples in there has now made me slightly less terrified of someone shutting me in there, so that’s a plus, too!  ;)

I decided I had to make a few apple recipes before I could even touch anything chocolate (which is what I really want), so I started out with trying out a gluten free apple pie bar.  I previously made these berry bars, and I really liked the “crust” of them, so I took pretty much took that recipe and made it with apples, eliminating the coconut.  I still used the coconut oil, which definitely lends a light coconut flavor to the recipe.  If you’re not a fan of coconut, I definitely recommend using butter, and then it’ll taste a whole lot more like pie, as well! [Read more...]