Stocking the freezer with homemade overnight oven chicken stock. So easy!

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Pineapple pudding cake – I adapted this recipe to make it from scratch w/ fresh pineapple.

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This is the original recipe.
My adaptations:
I halved it and made it in a 9″ spring form pan.
I used this one bowl yellow cake recipe rather than use a packaged cake mix. (and I halved this recipe as well).
I used a cooked vanilla pudding mix instead of instant (and added the egg yolk).
I used fresh pineapple instead of canned.
I used palm sugar instead of granulated.
I added about 2 tablespoons of rum to the cake – by spooning it across the top of the cake after it had cooled.

Sparkling White Sangria with White Peaches and Basil


I really like Sangria. After Beginner’s White Sangria and Red Sangria Adventures, I thought I’d try a Seasonal Sparkling White Peach version.

There’s plenty of basil in the garden so I decided that would be the pairing.

Master Ratio: of 1 bottle of white prosecco wine to 1/2 cup of sugar syrup to 1/2 c of alcohol/brandy/liqueur and 3/4 bottle of sparkling water.

To make the Basil Lime Simple Syrup:

1/2c of stems and leaves of fresh basil (packed)

zest of 1 lime

1/2c Organic Cane Sugar**

1/2c Water

Boil 1/2c of water with 1/2c of sugar and the zest of 1 lime until the mixture boils and the sugar is completely dissolved. Stir in the basil leaves. *Cool. When cooled strain through a fine mesh sieve, discarding the filtered bits. You can do this in the microwave and it takes just a couple of minutes depending on the power of yours.

**Because this syrup was going into a white sangria I used Organic Cane Sugar which nets a golden colored syrup.

*Cool it fast in a metal bowl in the colder part of your fridge or in the freezer.


White Sangria Recipe

3 White Peaches peeled cut into cubes (you can not peel them if you wish)

1 lime juiced. You can use some of the pulp if you wish.

Basil leaves – to taste. I used 2 large sprigs of leaves only – and I used Purple Opal Basil and Green to give extra color

1 Bottle White Sparkling Wine – I used a Prosecco

1/2c of Elderflower Liqueur (I used St. Germain)

3/4 bottle of Sparkling Mineral Water (to taste)

1/2c of Simple Syrup – I used the Basil Lime Simple Syrup recipe above.


To a large pitcher add the white peach pieces and basil, juice from the lime, Elderflower Liqueur, and the cooled basil lime simple syrup.

Add the bottle of  White Wine. Mix Well and taste.

Add Sparkling Water tasting after 1/2 the bottle. If you want the Sangria lighter add some more water.

If you are making this a few hours ahead for a party then don’t add all the sparkling wine and water. Macerate the fruit/basil in the syrup, liqueur and 1/3 of bottle of the sparkling wine. Then add the water and the rest of the wine before serving.

I think Sangria is best served fresh. You can make it a few hours ahead but if you have to make the night before, leave the fresh fruit out until a few hours before serving.


Notes on ingredients:

St. Germain’s Elderflower Liqueur

Another option for color would be to add a handful of raspberries and use yellow peach/nectarine.

A variation would be to add another flavor element of mint or switch the basil for the mint in both the syrup and the leaves.

Choosing a Wine: You want a sparkling wine that’s not too sweet but has some rustic bubbles. This is the perfect use for a prosecco or cava.


Purple Cornbread with Spelt – Skillet Bread Recipe – No Wheat

Purple Corn Skillet Bread
Purple Corn Skillet Bread

I love this recipe, because it’s easy, delicious and beautiful. The purple corn flour makes the dish even more colorful, but you can use regular yellow or white corn flour. You can also use frozen white corn. This cornbread is richer and more cake-like than traditional cornbread but it’s also not as sweet. It’s also easily made Gluten-free, by switching the Spelt out for your favorite GF baking mix.


1c Purple corn flour*

1/2c Spelt flour

1/2c Stone ground polenta (fine)

1 1/2 tsp Baking powder

1/2 tsp Baking soda

1/4 tsp Salt

2 tsp Sugar

2 Eggs

2c Buttermilk

1 1/2c Whole Corn Kernels (Frozen Okay – room temperature)

1 Leek

3 tbsp Salted butter


Preheat the oven to 425F

Halve the leek and chop the white part thin rounds (which should easily fall apart). Chop the bottom third of the green part of the leek finely. Keep the top 2/3 for your next stock project. (I keep a bag in the freezer as a stock pot in progress.) In the preheated oven heat the butter until it’s melted. I used a round pyrex pie plate but you can use a square pyrex dish or a ceramic one. Carefully pull out the pan and add the leeks to the butter making sure they are well coated.  Return the pan to the oven until the leeks are starting to color about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, add the eggs to the flour, polenta, corn flour, salt, sugar, baking soda and baking powder. Mix well and then add the buttermilk. The result should look somewhat like pancake batter.

Take the leek and butter mixture from the oven and add the corn coating it well in the butter sauce. Carefully pour the batter over the corn/butter/leek mixture. It should cover it completely – don’t mix it in the pan or you’ll mess up your pretty top.

Bake for 25mins or until the internal temp is above 180F.

Remove from oven. Cool 5 minutes then carefully flip onto a plate larger than your pie plate.

Serve immediately or at room temperature with your favorite soup or chili.

Optional: Add 1/4c of shredded cheese to the batter. You can make this recipe Gluten Free by switching the Spelt Flour with your favorite GF baking mix.

* I used Organic Purple Maiz Morado Flour from Zocalo Gourmet

Purple Corn Flour from Peru
Organic Maiz Morado – Purple Corn Flour from Peru from Zocalo
Buffalo Chili with Purple Cornbread
Buffalo Chili with Purple Cornbread