RECIPE: Oatmeal Cake & May Wine

Recipe: Oatmeal Cake #mayday #beltane #spring #dessert
Last week my boyfriend James and I celebrated Beltane for the first time. Beltane is an old pagan holiday that celebrates the midpoint between spring and summer. It’s traditionally celebrated by having a bonfire, sipping may wine, eating a traditional oatmeal cake, and of course, by constructing a May Pole. Festivities begin on April 30 and are continued through the next day, May 1st.

Although we didn’t have a May Pole, I did make a small mobile decoration out of an embroidery hoop and ribbon to hang in our living room.

For dinner we made herb & citrus baked chicken (recipe from The Comfort of Cooking) with a green herb salad with strawberries, avocado and goat cheese. Both turned out delicious!

May Day Decoration #beltane #diy

For dessert, I made the traditional Beltane treat, Oatmeal Cake. I adapted a recipe from Jenny Can Cook and it turned out delicious. It has a muffin-like texture making it the perfect dessert when topped with vanilla ice cream and fresh berries. Plus you can have a slice for breakfast with fresh berries and a drizzle of honey the next morning!

Recipe: Oatmeal Cake #mayday #beltane #spring #dessert

 

Recipe: Oatmeal Cake
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1¼ cups boiling water
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup whole grain pastry flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup + 1 Tablespoon oil (canola or extra light olive oil)
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅔ cup + 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla
  • Topping:
  • 1 tablespoon softened butter
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sweetened flaked coconut
  • ⅓ cup diced pecans (preferably toasted)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9-inch round cake pan. Pour boiling water over the oats in a small bowl and let stand, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
  2. Sift flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.
  3. Using an electric mixer and a large bowl, beat oil, eggs, sugar and vanilla for 2-3 minutes on medium-high speed until thick.
  4. On lowest speed, slowly stir in warm oats, followed by the flour mixture. Bake 35 minutes or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean. Let cool.
  5. Next prepare the topping. In a small bowl combine the softened butter, brown sugar, flaked coconut and diced pecans using your fingers.
  6. Cover cake with topping and broil for about one minute until just browned. Be sure to watch it carefully as it will brown very quickly!

Recipe: May Wine and Oatmeal Cake #mayday #beltane

 

Recipe: May Wine
 
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A traditional drink served for Beltane and May Day.
Author:
Recipe type: Beverage
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 1 bottle white wine
  • 1 bottle champagne
  • ½ cup chopped strawberries
  • 1 small bunch of sweet woodruff (or substitute with an herb of your choice)
  • Ice
Instructions
  1. In a large pitcher, combine the wine and sweet woodruff and let infuse for at least 1 hour or overnight. I wasn't able to find any sweet woodruff so I substituted some pineapple sage instead. Feel free to do the same with any fresh herb of your choice.
  2. Next pour in the champagne and strawberries. Serve over ice.

 

RECIPE: Passion Cookies For May Day

Recipe: Passion Cookies #beltane #mayday #homemade

To celebrate the beautiful weather we are having here in Portland and to welcome the coming May, I decided to whip up a batch of Passion Cookies. These cookies are the perfect spring treat. Sweet, spicy and crunchy. I plan to treat myself to some May Wine and cookies tomorrow evening to welcome in the warm weather and the May.

Recipe: Passion Cookies
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 1¾ cups whole grain flour
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 3 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1½ tsp. ground cloves
  • 5 tsp. powdered ginger
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ cup crystallized ginger, coarsely chopped (optional)
  • Red sugar sprinkles
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Using a hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar then beat in the egg and molasses.
  2. Sift the dry ingredients into a medium bowl, then stir into the wet batter. Add crystallized ginger and mix until combined. Place dough in the refrigerator to chill at least 20 minutes.
  3. Using a rolling pin and a floured surface, roll out the dough to about ¼" thick. Cut out with a cookie cutter. Press one side of the cookie into a plate of red sprinkles then place sugar side up onto the baking sheet, about 3 inches apart. Bake 9-11 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

Recipe: Passion Cookies #beltane #mayday #homemade

RECIPE: Carrot Cupcakes with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

Recipe: Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting #easter #dessert #homemade
Carrot cake is a flavor I often overlook, but love. I’ve been getting into the Easter spirit and decided to make Carrot Cupcakes. This was my first time baking carrot cake from scratch and I chose this recipe from Averie Cooks as my guide. The result was so delicious; they quickly disappeared from my kitchen. They are the perfect blend of sweet and spice and have a moist, soft texture. Plus the addition of the Robin’s Eggs and nuts on top added even more yummy-ness to this Easter treat.

Recipe: Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting #easter #dessert #homemade

Recipe: Carrot Cupcakes with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Easter
Serves: 18 cupcakes
Ingredients
  • Cupcakes:
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup canola or vegetable oil
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar, packed
  • ¼ cup sour cream (or greek yogurt)
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • ½ tsp cloves
  • Pinch of salt (to taste)
  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 3 medium carrots, coarsely grated (about 1 ½ cups)
  • ½ cup raisins (optional)

  • Frosting:
  • 4 oz cream cheese, softened (about ½ cup)
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups confectioner’s sugar (more or less as desired)
  • Crushed pecans (optional)
  • Whoppers Mini Robin’s Eggs (optional)
Instructions
  1. To make the cupcakes, first preheat oven to 350F. Line two muffin trays with cupcake liners.
  2. In a large mixing bowl (I used my electric mixer), whisk together the first 11 ingredients until combined.
  3. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda, and stir until just combined (don’t over mix).
  4. Next fold in the carrots and raisins.
  5. Fill each cupcake liner ⅔ full. I got 18 cupcakes, but you may get more or less depending on how full you fill each liner. Be careful not to fill them any higher than ¾ full or they will overflow when baked in the oven.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. While the cupcakes cool, make the frosting. With your electric mixer, beat together the cream cheese, butter and vanilla on high until light and fluffy.
  8. Slowly add in the powdered sugar until you get your desired frosting consistency. 1 ½ cups was perfect for me, but feel free to adjust to your own tastes.
  9. Frost the cooled cupcakes then add about a teaspoon of crushed pecans to the top of each to form a nest. Then add three Mini Robin’s Eggs for the final touch.

Recipe: Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting #easter #dessert #homemade

RECIPE: Pretzel Treat Favors

Pretzel Treat Favors #recipe #babyshower #birthday #party #treat
My mom and I recently made these adorable Pretzel Treat Favors for a baby shower. They were so easy and fun to make I just had to share them with you! Plus I LOVE the sweet and salty combination of this versatile treat.

Pretzel Treat Favors #recipe #babyshower #birthday #party #treat

What’s great about making these for party favors is that you can make them for practically any event. All you have to do is use colored sprinkles to match your theme. We chose pink and rainbow sprinkles for our rainbow/unicorn theme baby shower. But feel free to use whatever colors you like for birthdays, holidays, or whatever kind of event you are planning.

Pretzel Treat Favors #recipe #babyshower #birthday #party #treat

The other great thing about these favors is that you can make them in advance! Just store them in air tight containers and they will stay fresh for up to one week. Now onto the recipe…

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Recipe: Pretzel Treat Favors
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Dessert Favor
Ingredients
  • Pretzel sticks
  • White chocolate chips
  • Sprinkles (I recommend getting a variety of different sprinkles so you can have fun mixing them and making fun color combinations).
Instructions
  1. Simply melt the white chocolate using a double broiler. Dip a pretzel stick in. I used a spatula to help evenly coat the pretzel. Give it a good shake to allow excess chocolate to drip off. Next, dust your choice of sprinkles over the chocolate until evenly covered. It's best to do this over a pan or plate to catch falling sprinkles. Place pretzel treat on a pan lined with parchment paper to harden and dry.
  2. Allow to dry completely. You can pop it into the refrigerator to speed up the process. The chocolate needs to be completely hardened before packaging. Stored in an air tight container, these treats will stay fresh for up to one week.

Pretzel Treat Favors #recipe #babyshower #birthday #party #treat
Pretzel Treat Favors #recipe #babyshower #birthday #party #treat

RECIPE: Fire Cider

Recipe: Fire Cider #homemade #health #wellness #remedy

I first learned of Fire Cider while taking Stephanie Perkinson’s Deeply Rooted Cleanse this winter. It’s a homemade concoction said to prevent cold and flu symptoms and boost your immune system. It’s anti-bacterial, anti-viral, congestion clearing and warming. As soon as Stephanie shared her recipe with the cleanse group I quickly went to my grocery store and bought all the ingredients. For me, I always tend to catch some sort of cold bug whenever seasons change. With Spring finally popping it’s head out, I knew this homemade preventative would come in handy.

Recipe: Fire Cider #homemade #health #wellness #remedy
Recipe: Fire Cider #homemade #health #wellness #remedy

The base ingredients for this drink are raw apple cider vinegar and raw honey. There are a ton of variations on how to make Fire Cider, but they all contain some sort of pepper, ginger, onion, horseradish, garlic, citrus and herbs. The resulting taste is strong, spicy, sweet and sour. I was afraid to try it at first thinking it would taste awful! But when I gathered up my courage and took a sip, I was surprised that the taste wasn’t bad, but very, very strong and unlike anything else I’ve tasted before.

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Fire Cider
 
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Fire cider has been made for generations as a simple and effective remedy to relieve sinus congestion, ward off colds and flus, aid digestion and increase circulation. You can drink it neat, mix it with other beverages and use it in cooking.
Author:
Recipe type: Beverage
Ingredients
  • ½ cup fresh grated ginger root
  • ½ cup fresh grated horseradish root
  • ½ cup fennel, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 head of garlic, smashed
  • Juice of one lemon
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 1 tsp or more of cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp turmeric
  • Several sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • Raw apple cider vinegar (I used Bragg’s brand)
  • Raw honey to taste
  • Cheesecloth
  • Quart-sized mason jar
Instructions
  1. Prepare all of your ingredients (minus the cider vinegar and honey). Stuff everything into a sanitized glass quart-sized mason jar. Pour the vinegar over the top, filling it all the way up. Use a piece of parchment or wax paper under the lid to keep the vinegar from touching the metal. Shake well.
  2. Store in a cool, dark place for one month. Give the jar a few good shakes every day.
  3. After four weeks, use cheesecloth to strain out the pulp, pouring the Fire Cider into a clean jar. Then add in ¼ cup of raw honey and stir until dissolved. Take a calming breath and taste your cider for the first time. Add more honey to suit your preferences (I ended up adding a lot more!).
Notes
If you feel a cold or flu coming on, take 1 teaspoon three times per day. You can also drink Fire Cider on a daily basis, taking just 1 sip (or teaspoon) in the morning.