A Weekend Well Spent

November 16, 2009

I have always felt that if a weekend begins with a snow storm, than it is meant to be spent indoors and snugly.

That is where we found ourselves for the past two days; curled up and happy under blankets, with books in hand, and large cups of hot chocolate. I think that my favorite part of the weekend was hurrying out of bed on Sunday morning to make coffee, tea and scones, and then racing to get “back into the warm”, as my children call it, and not leaving again until after Noon. Now that is what I call time well spent.

As the holidays draw near, this is normally a time where I start to feel the sadness of having two children who can not eat gluten and wheat. I have always wished that we could share the cakes, cookies, and bread recipes that so defined the holiday celebrations of my youth. One of the most exciting parts of the season was baking next to my mother for a full week, watching as she would roll out dough after dough, package everything up beautifully, and deliver them to friends and family.
I so wanted to do the same with my boys, but after they were diagnosed, I tucked the idea of sharing those recipes deep into my mind, and tried to create new recipes that would grow with them through their lives. Then recently, I discovered two all-purpose flour mixes that seem to work on a 1:1 ratio with regular flours, and which actually taste so good, that they make it hard to tell the difference between the gluten free treats, and the ones made with wheat. Gluten Free Pantry All-Purpose Flour, and Deby’s All-Purpose Flour mix are two of the best out there (although, I do love Pamela’s mix as well, for certain recipes). I have adapted well over 20 recipes from different cookbooks over the past 4 months, and each and every one has come out with a positive result. Now all that I can think about is the days that will be spent this season, my mother, sons and I in the kitchen, baking up the traditions that have been with me for the past 34 holidays.
On Friday I made my favorite apple cinnamon scone recipe, and then froze it into a brick to use throughout the weekend. Tell me, is there really anything better than the smells of apple and cinnamon in pastries, permeating your home on a cold, snowy morning? I think not
Speaking of childhood, my youngest recently discovered my old View Finder in a box in his room, and he spent the weekend captivated by the way that the images moved, and the story it told. In a world with so much visual media, it was a sight to see this old toy causing so much joy. If I remember correctly, my first view finder movie was a Mickey Mouse classic.

Winter weather always seems to find me walking about the house, taking mental notes on those things that need to be repaired or updated. My kitchen chairs are in serious need of some TLC, but rather then try and redo the seats right now, I decided that fun, decorative cushions might be a quicker, and brighter way to go.


Using my favorite 16×16″ ruler, I cut out my front and back fabrics, and then spent about an hour turning fabric scraps into appliqued circles.


I used a thick wool batting for the cushion, added in some bias tape ties, and called it an improvement.


Nothing like a little home care to start the week out right.

Gluten Free Apple Cinnamon Scones

2 1/4 cups all purpose gluten free flour
1 tsp. baking powder
4 tbsp. butter
2/3 cup of milk of choice
1/3 cup of honey or sugar
1 apple, washed, and grated
1 tsp. of cinnamon
1/8 tsp. of nutmeg
1 egg (or egg replacer)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix the dry ingredients together, including the spices. Cut in butter with a fork or pastry cutter. Add milk and eggs and combine. Fold in apple. Using parchment paper, shape dough into a long brick, and either refrigerate or freeze. When ready to bake, simply cut into triangles, and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.
As an optional topping, you can apply an egg glaze, and sprinkle with sugar prior to baking


{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

Brooke November 16, 2009 at 4:45 pm

Chair cushions look great! And the recipe sounds delightful. I have been contemplating taking gluten out of our diet, but haven't made the leap yet… we don't have reason to or reason not to. Hmmm!

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AdirondackMama November 16, 2009 at 5:22 pm

You have the BEST ideas! I love the cushions, my chairs are hard wood and are in desperate need of some TLC as well. I have never made scones, but I think I might have to give that Apple recipe a try.

YUM.

I am glad that you had such a home-y weekend. Nothing is better than that.

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Chelsea November 16, 2009 at 5:29 pm

chair cushions and cocoa and scones, oh my. A very lovely weekend indeed. I'm so glad you are finding ways to adapt the recipes you loved and hold strong in your memory for your own family — food is very much a part of my own memory of holidays and I know it would be so difficult to not be able to include it in my adult celebrations. Into the warm… +Chelsea

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Andrea November 16, 2009 at 5:48 pm

I'm so glad you have found holiday recipes that are gluten free. My two favorite little nieces, sister, and best friend all have celiac so we are always looking for new recipes to make things for the little girls especially. The one thing I can't seem to be able to find a good substitue for is graham crackers….any suggestions?

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Tonya November 16, 2009 at 6:18 pm

Heather,
Making seat covers has been on my to-do list!~ Thanks for the nudge. Also, that recipe looks wonderful. With the arrival of the cool weather, afternoon tea and a treat have become routine and these scones will be perfect.
Warm wishes.

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nicola November 16, 2009 at 6:25 pm

i am SO glad (and inspired) that you are finding ways to bake GF with your boys. food brings us together like little else does on occasions. strong memories from the kitchen. and i love your "repair" solution for your chairs. (i love rush seating.)
in response to your comment on my blog…i didn't know you hailed from our coast! i used to work at butano state park. so much beauty and fun along 1, isn't there?
nicola
http://whichname.blogspot.com

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Prairie GIrl November 16, 2009 at 7:03 pm

Thank you for the visit – I'm so glad you came by! Your blog is just lovely and I think your weekend sounds like it was perfectly delightful.

I will be back for sure :)

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Maeghan November 16, 2009 at 7:22 pm

Love the chair cushions! I am so going out to buy that flour mix. Thanks for sharing!

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kyndale November 16, 2009 at 7:40 pm

Heather, I really love apples and cinnamon..I will have to try this. But, I am realizing more and more that I'm not really a baker as much as a person who love cooking food. Or maybe I'm just a little discouraged at being gluten-free. I found this really good bread recently at Whole Foods. It's called Ugi bread and it is so great! I made a grilled cheese sandwich and I felt almost like I was eating something I shouldn't! Did you tell me about them before? The company is out of Denver. I love your chair! Great job! xo Kyndale

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Ali November 16, 2009 at 7:55 pm

Although we don't have anything as exciting as snow, I'm starting to get into the mood of winter baking. Your post has inspired me to set aside a week before Christmas to devote to it – and I think I know two little helpers who'll be pleased as punch when I tell them.

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Louana November 16, 2009 at 8:44 pm

I have that same view finder and my 3 year old loves it! Your cushions look great too.

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Nina - Tabiboo November 16, 2009 at 8:47 pm

Mmmmmmm I have to agree apple and cinnamon is a wonderful smell especially at this time of the year though I have and have had similar worries with wheat and gluten, but it looks like the intolerance is slowly being grown out of it's just eggs now which with the cakes and cookies that the whole family enjoy it seems so unfair that our littlest one cannot partake in the making and enjoying of too, but adapting I am and maybe this will be another one that she will out grow?? Though I'm not holding out much hope.

Staying in bed until noon – 'yes please!'

take care,

Nina xxxx

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perches November 16, 2009 at 8:58 pm

Your morning sounds perfect, as does the mix of fresh baked scones and hot chocolate. Yummm… I love the red side of the chair cushions.

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lorena November 16, 2009 at 9:12 pm

oh my! i salvaged a chair very similar to yours from a neighbor's trash but have no idea where to start in repairs! i will make a cushion too – to get me through for now – but do have any idea how to truly repair it? i have no idea even where to start in googling it b/c i don't know what that weaved material is! any help i'd appreciate!!!

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Valarie November 17, 2009 at 12:16 am

It snowed? How lucky you all are. We are still having those golden days of autumn. Not that I'm complaining. I think your boys are the luckiest boys to have you as a momma. That you are converting recipes for them so they don't miss out on apple cinnamon scones and other treats is so compassionate. I know us mother's would do anything to help our children but you have taken the high road and you inspire me so very much. Continue to enjoy your snow, seat covers, and scones. Happy Monday.

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Shivayamama November 16, 2009 at 6:03 pm

Yes! Outside the Bread Box ” target=”_blank”>http://www.outsidethebreadbox.xom
and Deby's gluten free http://www.debysglutenfree.com/
all make graham crackers
I have also heard alot of good things about KinnKinnick graham crackers as well http://www.thebetterhealthstore.com/ItemDetail.as… />How neat that you are helping to find your family and friends GF food!
________________________________________

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Stephanie November 17, 2009 at 1:14 am

Sounds like a lovely weekend! We had 70 degree weather here, but after reading your post, I'm thinking some snow would be nice. I'm definitely getting in a holiday mood. :)
Your seat covers are great, love the fabrics!

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quirkygranolagirl November 17, 2009 at 3:38 am

I'd like to stay in bed until noon, but the baby thinks that is the worst thing ever.
It sounds like you might be ready to write a gluten-free cookbook soon!

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geek+nerd November 17, 2009 at 3:44 am

The cushions are beautiful – and thanks for the scone recipe!

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Nancy November 17, 2009 at 3:59 am

That is so, so wonderful that you've found a way to bake your family holiday recipes with the boys.

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renee November 17, 2009 at 5:07 am

I felt that snow and sewing went together very nicely this weekend. Maybe next snowstorm we will try your apple scone recipe!

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Lisa Q November 17, 2009 at 1:00 pm

those cushions look great! i need to make one for our school room chair…thanks for the inspiration. And I'm so glad you've found a way to incorporate your traditional recipes into new ones your children can enjoy! that's the power of motherhood!

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Jessica November 17, 2009 at 4:23 pm

I need to do this to a few of our chairs too. I just finished curtains (we have been living here over a year!) so hopefully, this winter will be a good time to hunkerdown to some crafty renovations projects. I want to try rug hooking the seat covers I think…

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Heather November 17, 2009 at 4:55 pm

Thanks for the recipe! Sounds great 😀 My husband LOVES scones.
The chairs look really cute!

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larissa November 18, 2009 at 2:33 am

I love how you added the applique circles to the cushions! I just ordered some applique scissors for reverse applique – I haven't tried it yet but i'll post when I do. All of your recipes sound so yummy and healthy (with very little butter or oil) that I'm going to start converting them back by substituting regular flour. you need to write a cookbook!

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kristyn November 18, 2009 at 5:12 am

I love how you created from what you have! great work…beautiful work!

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jessica November 18, 2009 at 12:38 pm

I will absolutely be making those scones (and chair pads!). I love the anticipation of a storm–the perfect reason to snuggle, drink cocoa and enjoy 'slow'

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Audra November 18, 2009 at 1:43 pm

Oh there's nothing like a snowy morning! So glad you found a good flour to use. Holiday's would be hard without all the goodies!

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AG Ambroult November 18, 2009 at 2:06 pm

indeed — time well spent in the warm. Maybe my kids need a vintage viewfinder for christmas this year! I'll never forget mine…

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erin November 18, 2009 at 2:11 pm

this whole post just warmed my soul.

thank you.

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Shivayamama November 18, 2009 at 3:25 pm

Oh I love Ugi!!!!!! That bread is so yummy. We have a lot of different breads. etc that they make here in Colorado, and if you ever need me to ship you something, just let me know :)
I know how discouraging it is, trust me. I am a baker, and I am obsessive about not losing all the things that I have loved and that have brought me comfort. Hopefully, as the flours, ingredients, etc get a bit better tasting, we will all have those things that we loved back in our lives.

BTW, have you tried Glutino pastas yet? Seriously, I have not been able to taste much difference, and it is the only pasta that my kids will eat. I would recommend it :)

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Ansley November 28, 2009 at 2:36 am

cute cute cute cure for updating chairs!

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