Recipe Box: Coconut Caramel Saturday Sugars with Espresso Cane

While I wouldn’t say I’m a stress baker, I will say that sitting on my porch with a cold glass of milk and a handful of gluten-free Saturday Sugars makes me pretty happy.  Check out a new favorite flavor, a riff on the iconic Samoas Girl Scout cookies.

Saturday Sugars Coconut Caramel

Gluten-Free Coconut Caramel Saturday Sugars with Espresso Cane

Ingredients:
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar, such as Organic White Sugar In The Raw
1 egg
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon coconut extract
1 tablespoon caramel extract
2 cups Gluten-Free All-Purpose flour with xanthan gum in the mix, such as Domata Gluten-Free Recipe Ready Flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon espresso-flavored sugar cane

Instructions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350F.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Place the softened butter in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on medium until light and fluffy.  Add the sugar and beat on medium.  Add egg and extracts.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Add to butter mixture, beating until smooth.  Let the dough rest five minutes.
  4. Drop by the tablespoon about 2″ apart.  Press down tops and sprinkle a pinch of sugar on each cookie.
  5. Bake one pan at a time for 14 minute, or until cookies are golden brown.  Let cookies rest before transferring to a wire rack to cool.  Cookies will keep five days or up to 30 days in the freezer.

Want to make another flavor Saturday Sugars?  Try them in dark chocolate and Italian basil!

 

Good to Know: Eat Write Retreat

Sarah in the Kitchen Goes to the Eat Write Retreat from Sarah on Vimeo.

It’s been almost two months since I came home from the Eat Write Retreat, my first-ever intensive learning weekend for food bloggers and writers.  I waited to write this post because I wanted to see what I put into practice.  Here’s what stuck:

  1. I’ve been networking all wrong.  For the record, I wasn’t doing terribly but Joy Manning’s insights made me think more about the long-term aspects of working with others.  She encouraged all of us to think more about building professional relationships instead of just angling and reminded us that thank you notes never ever go out of style.
  2. Working with brands is a two-way street.  Monica Bhide made us consider the other side of blogger relations with her talk about the sponsored post.  Her words made me take a good hard look at the brands that I have worked with in the past and helped set a strict standard for the ones who want to work with me in the future.
  3. Timing is everything.  Yes, it’s true.  I’ve slowly been drowning in the catch-as-catch-can freelance writing world that I’ve been living in the past three years.  Debbie Koening threw me a life raft when she inspired us all to restructure our work day into a few 90-minute blocks with no interruptions, rank our priorities and divorce the grief.  Amen.

I stretched my culinary creativity for the Eat Write Retreat challenges with a special version of my Saturday Sugars for In The Raw and a fig and pasta dish for the FleishmanHillard Amazing Appetizers contest.  Both were popular posts here and were picked up by Honest Cooking Magazine.  The coolest was when Atoosa from Calphalon told me that my picks helped me win the Your Set Challenge.  I love being in my kitchen even more now!

Calphalon Prize

The workshops taught me so much.  Brona Cosgrave enlightened us about water (who knew?!), Jenn Sutherland connected us with mushroom growers and Marisa McClellan opened my eyes to small batch canning.  I learned all things BBQ and beauty queen with Karen Adler and Judith Fertig.  I interviewed Judith last week for a story on her Back in the Swing Cookbook and let her know I had been practicing my waves.

Best of all was making new friends.  Casey and Robyn, our fearless leaders, did right by connecting participants and professionals so we could all get to know each other as people.  We brainstormed for the OXO Challenge, snapped pictures in the low-tech food photo workshop, and gabbed on the way to and from the Supper Restaurant, R2L and Williams Sonoma.  It’s been nice to keep in touch and have a support team until we see each other again.

Here’s hoping I can get to Philly in 2014…it will be very hard to do but I’ve already started saving my pennies!