After 231 days of the global pandemic, I found a sense of quiet. Not the kind of quiet that makes you shudder with anxiousness, but rather the kind of quiet that carries with it a sense of serenity. I have no explanation for this unexplained magic, yet that didn’t concern me. As I took the dog on his evening walk, I listened to the nothing-ness abound and absorbed this uncharacteristic sense of calm. It made me miss this space, this place where I come to meet you intermingled with my thoughts.
Despite my lack of blogging, my recipe development has not ceased. I do find that as much as I love to cook and write, the pandemic has also brought with it excessive screen time. I now find it difficult to unwind here as much as I used to enjoy doing so, and I conversely miss being here beyond measure.
When speaking with a friend today, I realized that not only are the emotions of those around me running high, but my emotions, often pushed down, are also quite amplified. With Halloween now in the rear-view mirror, I am forced to admit that I am nearing the point that I almost don’t care about any holidays any longer. The pandemic lifestyle has ruined them all. That’s not to claim that there have not been good outcomes from this locked-in/locked-down abyss. There have been times of great laughter, happiness and joy. It’s just all so stale, and still no true end in sight. I miss being a global citizen of the world, and the fun spent with those friends and family that live far away. I find the less I am out in the world, the less I do in my free time. I am confined with my thoughts, without reprieve. I continue to focus on living in these moments, keeping those around me happy, and helping each of us find moments of joy.
Oddly enough, as expansive as time is, I find that I resist making plans. With an intense work schedule, I crave unstructured time – last minute plans and wishful thinking that someone will serendipitously be nearby and come by to surprise me and say hello. But in this seemingly post-apocalyptic world, that doesn’t really happen.
I focus on my creative vibe – I continue to love to cook. This recipe is one that I hold near and dear to my heart. It is one I created for some of my favorite gluten-free loves, and to me it is a treasure from its light and airy texture to its pleasant flavors. Added bonus, it is refined sugar free. Hold onto this recipe, you are going to want to set this on your repeat list.
Vanilla Cupcakes- Gluten Free
2 cups blanched almond meal
1 cup canned coconut milk
½ cup butter, softened
½ cup rice malt syrup (or honey)
¼ cup coconut flour, lumps removed
1 tsp baking powder (gluten free)
1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and place cupcake liners in cupcake pan.
In a large bowl, combine the almond meal, coconut flour and baking powder. Mix with a whisk to combine.
In a small bowl add butter and syrup, beat with a mixer on medium speed until combined. Then add the eggs, vanilla and coconut milk and continue to mix. Batter will appear slightly lumpy.
Add wet mixture into the dry mixture and gently stir by hand until combined.
Pour mixture into the cupcake liners, fill to the top, and bake for 30-35 minutes. Allow cupcakes to cool, they will slightly deflate.
Note: Cupcakes can also be frozen for a later treat if you can resist finishing them off.