Thursday, August 18, 2011

RECIPES: Elderberry Adventures

This is the first year I have actually taken advantage of the Elderberries that grow on our farm property.  We don't do anything to cultivate/nurture the Elderberry trees-they have been here as long as my husband can remember growing up when it was the Grandparents' farm. Some trees have died since we have moved here, but others have sprung up. They are a pretty low-maintenance plant, I think. They are also multi-purpose. In the past I have saved the berries and used them to make a sort of tea in the winter when fighting an illness. 

So, I sent my daughter out to pick, and the boys also helped a little.

We didn't have enough the first evening to make a real pie...nor did I have enough gluten-free flour to make a double crust. If I was going to make a pie, I was planning on eating it too!

So I improvised. Enter the Celebrating Home Ceramic Muffin Pan.

I had enough Bob's Red Mill All-Purpose Gluten-Free Baking Flour to make a single Gluten-Free Pie Crust (subbing 1 1/3 cups of the Bob's Red Mill for the various flours in that recipe). I pressed (not rolled) it into the muffin cups, poured the elderberry mixture from this recipe (which I halved) into the cups, then made little pieces play-dough style and criss-crossed them on top.

Then I baked until it looked done. (I think about half an hour)

Of course, it boiled over and went onto the bottom of my oven, during which my hubby sniffed and said "It smells like burnt Elderberry pie. You must be doing it right--that's the smell I remember growing up as a kid." To which my heart smiled.

Needless to say, it made a mess. I am glad I used this muffin pan instead of a metal one. I really hate scrubbing out muffin tins. This one I can throw in the dishwasher and it comes out clean. I want another one! It's going on my Christmas wish list.

The second night, the kids picked enough for a pie, but I wasn't in a pie-baking mood. I wanted something easier(for me).  Something that wouldn't make a mess out of my oven and smoke up the kitchen.  So I opted for an Elderberry Cobbler recipe I found online. (I love the internet for finding recipes!)

It worked beautifully. I used the remaining cup or so of Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free Baking Flour to make it Gluten-Free and threw it together. This was much easier than the "pie" and tasted yummy!  I forgot to take a pic before we cut into and devoured half of it, so here's what you get:

I'm sure the kids will be going berry picking again in a day or two. I wonder what I shall do next?

I'm warming up a bit to the Gluten-free flours. At least, the ones without gums added, and that have complete protein(read: brown rice and ground legumes). The Bob's flour, so far, has made me fairly happy with the above recipes.

Here's to Real Food!

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