The Hobbyholic

I can quit any time.

Happy Fall Y’all October 7, 2014

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 12:30 am

Even though the temperature here in Southern California is in triple digits once again we got a taste of fall last week. Cooler temps and well that always makes me want to bake.

Over the last 18 months or so I have had no desire to bake. My second daughter, Cake Pop, has so many food allergies that it is easier to list what she can have than what she can’t. It has been slow going and depressing as I can’t cook or bake the things I love and share with her. So instead I haven’t been baking at all. Not to mention my other daughter and myself can no longer eat gluten. Talk about depressing. And believe me, I know what I’m missing (tasty, tasty gluten filled things!!) and this isn’t something I give up lightly.

I have turned to sewing instead of baking and mostly because I’m nesting… more on that later.

Gluten free baking is, well, annoying in all honesty. There are so many flours to deal with and work arounds that are a pain. With two kids in the kitchen wanting to help, keeping track of which flour was used and how much was supposed to be used I just gave up. Something that came to me as second nature was no longer a joy to do but a hindrance. Not to mention all the failed recipes. Gluten free isn’t always very tasty. I’m not used to finding recipes that look so promising turn out so poorly. But now that I feel I am out of the food allergy haze with my second daughter I’ve been wanting to experiment more with gluten free baking.

Recently, Trader Joe’s came out with Gluten Free Pumpkin Pancake Mix.


It is Amazing!! So delicious. Wonderful flavor and texture. Pumpkin flavored things really make it fall and Trader Joe’s is knocking out of the park for this gluten free gal. Then my sister had a brilliant idea – use the mix to make scones. Starbucks pumpkin scones, scoot over. Gluten free pumpkin scones are what I need, and these are delivering. Delicious!

She used the recipe below and modified it.

Half the sugar and instead of the bisquick/gluten free flour she used the GF pancake mix. I made a powdered sugar, milk, glaze with a bit of cinnamon and cloves. So so yummy!

Blueberry Scones with Lemon Glaze
Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 14-16 min

1 cup of blueberries (rinsed drained)
3 eggs
2/3 cup heavy cream
2 cups gluten free self rising flour (or gluten free bisquick) & 1 tbsp divided
1/3 cup sugar
6 tbsp. cold diced butter
Ingredients For The Glaze
¾ of a cup of confectioner’s sugar
1 – 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ tsp lemon zest


Tarts October 18, 2013

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 1:12 am

I’ve been on an extremely limited diet in order to find out what my 9 mo old (Cake Pop) is allergic too. It has been difficult, depressing and hard in so many ways. Our culture revolves so heavily on food. I knew it but now I KNOW it. Looking at recipes much less thinking about tasty things has been off limits.

A friend invited my daughters and I over last week and made tarts. With my limited diet, her and her daughters were able to create a tasty tasty blueberry tart. And now I’m on a tart kick! I made three tarts two days later to take to a family gathering. My tart was based on the recipe below. And when I made them I adapted it to a Raspberry tart as well. Think I’ll be needing a set of these . How fun!

Heavenly Blueberry Tart


1 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold butter
1 tablespoon vinegar
2 pints fresh blueberries, divided
2/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
In a small bowl, combine flour, sugar and salt; cut in butter until crumbly. Add vinegar, tossing with a fork to moisten. Press onto bottom and up the sides of a lightly greased 9-in. tart pan with removable bottom.

For filling, place 1 pint of blueberries over crust. Combine the sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg; sprinkle over blueberries. Place tart pan on a baking sheet.Bake at 400° for 55-60 minutes or until crust is browned and filling is bubbly. Remove from the oven; arrange and press remaining berries in a single layer over top. Cool on a wire rack. Store in the refrigerator.

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap December 12, 2012

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 1:00 am

I like to bake. I like cookies. And I like to blog (when I remember to post!). So I decided to participate in The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap of 2012! I found out about the cookie swap shortly after last years swap was over and thought it would be fun to participate in. And it was! What is not to like about receiving cookies in the mail?

I received delicious cookies from 3 other bloggers. Go check out their recipes.
The Marvelous Misadventures of a Foodie
Attack of the Hungry Monster
The Chick Geek

I poured over my cookie recipes trying to decide on which one would be just right for the swap. Something that would ship well. But something not overly involving as I’m super pregnant (due in 2 weeks). I finally decided on a recipe I acquired from a friend last year when I hosted my first cookie exchange. I made The Elves Snickerdoodles. It’s a snickerdoodle but with nutmeg, lemon and a little glitter for flare. Enjoy!







The Elves Snickerdoodles

2 c Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg
1/2 c Vegetable Shortening
2 Tbsp Butter, Softened
1 c Sugar
1 Large Egg
1/3 c Sour Cream
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 tsp Grated Lemon Zest
Colored Sugar/Edible Glitter

Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg into a large bowl. In a separate bowl, using and electric mixer, cream the shortening and butter. Gradually mix in the sugar. Beat in egg until blended, then the sour cream, vanilla extract and lemon zest.

With wooden spoon, stir dry ingredients into creamed mixture half at a time, until evenly mixed. Cover and refrigerate 30-60 min.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Roll dough into 1 1/2 inch balls. Roll in colored sugar/edible glitter. Place on cookie sheet 3 inches apart. Bake for 15-18 min until golden brown. Cool on cookie sheet 2-3 min then transfer to a wire rack.

Makes 2 doz cookies.


Cranberry Walnut Oatmeal Cookies October 27, 2012

Filed under: Baking,Recipes — thehobbyholic @ 9:06 am

The perfect amount of fall…

Cranberry Walnut Oatmeal Cookies
from Crisco

Crisco® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
3/4 cup Crisco® Butter Flavor All-Vegetable Shortening
OR 3/4 Crisco® Baking Sticks Butter Flavor All-Vegetable Shortening
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup Pillsbury BEST® All Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 3/4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup chopped walnuts

1.HEAT oven to 350ºF. Coat baking sheets with no-stick cooking spray.

2.BEAT shortening, sugar and brown sugar in large bowl at medium speed of electric mixer until blended. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in small bowl. Beat into shortening mixture until smooth. Stir in oats, dried cranberries and walnuts. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls about 2-inches apart on prepared baking sheets.

3.BAKE 10 to 12 minutes or until light brown. Cool on baking sheets 2 minutes. Place on cooling rack to cool completely.


Pumpkin Cookies October 25, 2012

Filed under: Baking,Recipes — thehobbyholic @ 11:55 am

Fall is the perfect time for pumpkin recipes. Pumpkin bread and muffins come to mind. Trader Joe’s has pumpkin ravioli and pumpkin cream cheese. We will definitely be trying those out this year. A few years ago a friend gave me a recipe for pumpkin cookies. Something different! Often times in the fall everyone has pumpkin bread and muffins but cookies – I’ve never seen those.

Pumpkin Cookies

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 cup pumpkin
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
(I add 1/2 tsp ground ginger and 1/2 tsp ground cloves)

1/4 cup butter
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar
1 Tbsp + milk

Preheat oven to 375.
Mix sugar, butter, and pumpkin together in a large bowl.
Mix the flour, baking soda, baking powder, ground cinnamon, (ginger and cloves), and salt in a small bowl.
Slowly mix the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture. Blend well.
Drop by the tsp full on cookie sheet and bake at 375 F for 10-12 min or until golden.
On stove top in small pan, melt butter, add vanilla, then powdered sugar, then milk. Mix until smooth. Dip the top of the cooled cookies in frosting; let sit to harden. If the frosting hardens in small pan, just put back on stove to heat and if necessary add a little milk). Enjoy!


Granola April 21, 2012

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 4:10 pm

A few years ago a friend gave me a granola recipe she loves. I loved it, but never made it until about a year ago. Now I can’t stop making it. I go through phases of how much I eat at a time, but I always have it on hand. And now I have my mom hooked too.

Very simple recipe from Alton Brown. I usually double it and use all almonds (it’s what I have on hand) instead of a mix of nuts. Extra bonus: It is a fun one to include the daughter in. Lots of measuring and dumping. All things she loves about baking.

You can sub out different nuts and dried fruits too. Enjoy!


Alton Brown’s Granola Recipe

3 cups rolled oats
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup cashews
3/4 cup shredded sweet coconut
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup raisins


Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.

In a large bowl, combine the oats, nuts, coconut, and brown sugar.

In a separate bowl, combine maple syrup, oil, and salt. Combine both mixtures and pour onto 2 sheet pans. Cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes to achieve an even color.

Remove from oven and transfer into a large bowl. Add raisins and mix until evenly distributed.


Cinnamon Roll Cake April 19, 2012

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 3:46 pm

I found this recipe on Pinterest. And it turned out wonderful. But of course I forgot to take a before picture. The after picture is just as telling though.



  • 3 cups Flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 4 teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1 1/2 cups Milk
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla
  • 1/2 cup ( 1 stick)  Butter, melted


  • 1 cup ( 2 sticks) Butter, softened
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon Cinnamon


  • 2 cups Powdered Sugar
  • 5 Tablespoons Milk
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9×13 glass baking pan with cooking spray. Set aside.

In an electric or stand mixer add the flour, salt, sugar, baking powder, milk, eggs, and vanilla. Once combined well , slowly stir in the melted butter. Pour into the prepared 9×13 baking pan.

For topping, In a large bowl mix the 2 sticks of butter, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon together until well combined and creamy. Drop evenly over the batter by the tablespoonfuls and use a knife to marble/swirl through the cake.

Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or when a toothpick inserted near the center comes out nearly clean.

FOR GLAZE:  In a medium bowl, mix the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla together with a whisk. Drizzle evenly over the warm cake. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Flourless Chocolate Cake April 13, 2012

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 11:44 pm

I made a flourless chocolate cake for Easter and it was AMAZING!

Rich and decadent and yet, just the right amount. I’ll definitely be making this one again. (forgot to take a picture – mine didn’t look nearly as pretty as this one).

Flourless Chocolate Cake

  • 1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons espresso powder, optional
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, Dutch-process cocoa preferred


  • 1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

1) Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly grease an 8″ round cake pan; cut a piece of parchment or waxed paper to fit, grease it, and lay it in the bottom of the pan.

2) To make the cake: Put the chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe bowl, and heat until the butter is melted and the chips are soft. Stir until the chips melt, reheating briefly if necessary. You can also do this over a burner set at very low heat. Transfer the melted chocolate/butter to a mixing bowl.

3) Stir in the sugar, salt, espresso powder, and vanilla. Espresso enhances chocolate’s flavor much as vanilla does; using 1 teaspoon will simply enhance the flavor, while 2 teaspoons will lend a hint of mocha to the cake.

4) Add the eggs, beating briefly until smooth. Add the cocoa powder, and mix just to combine.

5) Spoon the batter into the prepared pan.

6) Bake the cake for 25 minutes; the top will have formed a thin crust, and it should register at least 200°F on an instant-read thermometer inserted into its center.

7) Remove it from the oven, and cool it in the pan for 5 minutes.

8) Loosen the edges of the pan with a table knife or nylon spreader, and turn it out onto a serving plate. The top will now be on the bottom; that’s fine. Also, the edges will crumble a bit, which is also fine. Allow the cake to cool completely before glazing.

9) To make the glaze: Combine the chocolate and cream in a microwave-safe bowl, and heat until the cream is very hot, but not simmering. Remove from the microwave, and stir until the chocolate melts and the mixture is completely smooth.

10) Spoon the glaze over the cake, spreading it to drip over the sides a bit. Allow the glaze to set for several hours before serving the cake.

Yield: 8″ cake, 8 to 12 servings.



Recipe and photo from:


Spring Cupcakes

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 8:34 pm

I am teaching another cake decorating class tomorrow. This time, cupcakes. Sample below.

Horrible picture, but you get the idea.


Buttermilk-Blueberry Breakfast Cake February 2, 2012

Filed under: Baking — thehobbyholic @ 11:40 pm

Blueberries or “buberries” as my daughter calls them are starting to show their plump little faces around town. I like to try a few new recipes each season and this is another keeper. It is light and flavorful without being too sweet or too cake-y. I doubled the recipe and it came out perfect.

Of course I forgot to take a before picture but the after says just as much….

Buttermilk-Blueberry Breakfast Cake
Serves 6-8

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tsp. lemon zest or more — zest from 1 large lemon
7/8 cup* + 1 tablespoon sugar**
1 egg, room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. kosher salt
2 cups fresh blueberries
1/2 cup buttermilk

* 7/8 cup = 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons
** This 1 tablespoon is for sprinkling on top
(If you don’t have buttermilk on hand – Place a Tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice in a liquid measuring cup. Add enough milk to bring the liquid up to the one-cup line. Let stand for five minute. Then, use as much as your recipe calls for. Source)

1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Cream butter with lemon zest and 7/8 cup of the sugar until light and fluffy.

2. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Meanwhile, toss the blueberries with ¼ cup of flour, then whisk together the remaining flour, baking powder and salt.

3. Add the flour mixture to the batter a little at a time, alternating with the buttermilk. Fold in the blueberries.

4. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan (or something similar) with butter or coat with non-stick spray. Spread batter into pan. Sprinkle batter with remaining tablespoon of sugar. Bake for 35 minutes. Check with a toothpick for doneness. If necessary, return pan to oven for a couple of more minutes. (Note: Baking for as long as 10 minutes more might be necessary.) Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.