Thursday, September 30, 2010

31 for 21 Blog Challenge!

    October is Down Syndrome awareness month. I have to do a post a day, to raise awareness for Down Syndrome. This challenge is called 31 for 21. You may not know, but I have a little brother who is 5 years old with Down Syndrome, and his name is Osiyyah. He is such a blessing, a happy little boy, and life without him would be pretty dull! If you haven't noticed yet, all my recipes on here are gluten-free. We have discovered that half our family cannot handle gluten, and he is how we found this out, because he cannot handle ANY gluten (we think he might have Celiac).

So, I am going to try to post 31 recipes in the month of October!

~ Hanunyah

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Fluffy White Frosting

This is a fluffy frosting made with egg whites, sugar, water, cream of tartar and vanilla. I used our big stand mixer to beat it. I have made it a few times and used it to top brownies, or dip cookies or fresh strawberries in. It is a recipe I found in a Desserts cookbook by Better Homes and Gardens, and it was suppose to be made for a white layer cake.

Fluffy White Frosting
1 cup white granulated sugar
1/3 cup water
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. In a medium saucepan, stir together the sugar, water, and cream of tartar. Cook and stir until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is bubbly.

2. In a small mixing bowl, combine the 2 egg whites and the vanilla. Very slowly add the sugar mixture to the egg white mixture, beating constantly with an electric mixer on high speed about 7 minutes or until stiff peaks form (tips stand straight). Store in the refrigerator.

~ Hanunyah

GF Neapolitan Cookies

Well, I made these a couple weeks or so ago, but we've been busy lately, so I haven't posted for about a week.
     Ok, I know, the color isn't right, but I didn't have any red food coloring, so I used blue. These were a bit grainy, but still yummy and they got eaten up. I didn't use nuts. I used I think about 3 Tablespoons chocolate chips (melted) for the chocolate layer. I also added a handful of chocolate chips, not melted, to the chocolate dough. I think next time I make these I'll only use about 2 cups of flour (gluten-free, of course), and 1/4 cup of potato starch and/or cornstarch (because the mixture seemed a little dry, and I added a tablespoon or so of lard). The recipe said this makes 72 to 84 cookies. I found this recipe in a Dessert cookbook by Better Homes and Gardens.

Gluten-Free Neapolitan Cookies
2 1/4 cups to 2 1/2 cups gluten free flour, and use some starch so the cookies aren't grainy
about 3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup margarine or butter (I used lard)
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
5 drops red food coloring
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled to room temperature

1. Line a 9x3x3-inch loaf pan with waxed paper (I used foil because we don't have waxed paper), allowing the ends of the paper to hang over the sides of the pan.

2. In a small bowl, stir together the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder and salt.

3. In a medium mixing bowl, beat the margarine or butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add the sugar and beat until the mixture is fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla, and beat just until the ingredients are combined. Slowly add the flour mixture, beating on medium speed about 3 minutes or until all the ingredients are combined.

4. Divide the dough into 3 portions and place each in a separate bowl. Stir the almond extract and red food coloring into 1 dough portion. Stir the chopped walnuts into the second portion and the melted chocolate into the remaining portion.

5. Pat the pink dough evenly into the bottom of the prepared loaf pan. Pat the dough with nuts over the pink dough. Top with the chocolate dough. Cover the pan and chill in the refrigerator at least 4 hours or in the freezer a few minutes, until the dough is firm enough to slice.

6. Preheat oven to 350 F. Remove the chilled dough from the pan by lifting the waxed paper ends; remove the waxed paper.

7. Using a sharp knife, cut the block of cookie dough lengthwise in half. Cut each cookie block crosswise into 1/8- to 1/4- inch-wide slices. Arrange the slices about 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.

8. Bake in the 350 oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until the edges are firm and light brown. Cool the cookies on the sheet for 1 minute, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

*Update: Here are some updated pictures - I made them again.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

I've made no-flour peanut butter cookies before, but I was given this recipe, so I tried it. They were better then the recipe I made before, on my other blog here. The recipe called for white and brown sugar, but I used all white and a couple tablespoons molasses. I doubled the recipe. I added a handful of chocolate chips to the last of the batter, and they baked (and tasted, of course) great, and the chocolate chips were a perfect addition. If you like crunchy cookies, I'm sure you could add a handful of peanuts, or use crunchy peanut butter (we only had creamy, so I used that). You may either drop the cookie dough from a spoon, or make into balls or blobs and flatten with a fork. They tasted almost just like regular peanut butter cookies.

Note: The baking time on this recipe may vary. The cookies may need to be baked longer than 6 minutes, or maybe a little less.

The recipe is from: . This is a gluten-free blog, and has good recipes from what I have glanced at.

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
cup peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp. 
baking soda
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Combine ingredients and drop by teaspoonfuls on cookie sheet. Bake for 6 minutes. Let cool.

White Lime Fudge

This was different, but actually pretty good. If I make it again, then I'll probably make it without the nuts.

This recipe has 3/4 cup milk, so don't use too small of a pan.

White Lime Fudge
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup milk
grated lime peel of one lime
3/4 cup chopped pecans

Melt butter in medium saucepan; stir in sugar and milk until sugar dissolves. Bring to boil. Cover and boil one minute to dissolve sugar off sides of pan. Set candy thermometer in pan and cook syrup gently without stirring to 236F. Cool to 110F about 45 minutes. Stir in lime peel and pecans. Beat vigorously until mixture just starts to lose its gloss. Pour immediately into well greased 8 by 8 by 2 inch pan. Cool and cut into squares.

Yield: about 1 pound

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Cocoa Fudge

Update 12-17-11: This recipe was good, but I like the new one I created much better. You may see the new recipe here.

I coated the bottom of an 9x12 pan (I think) with colored mini marshmallows (after I sprayed it with Crisco). I didn't use the vanilla. I used an electric mixer to beat it, and even then it took a little while. I think the only way I would beat it by hand is if I had several helpers to take turns beating. I think I am going to beat it longer next time, because it wasn't very thick. I poured the fudge over the marshmallows.

But, everyone liked it, and there were only about 5 pieces left the next day!

But, let me warn you. Make sure you use a big enough pot because of the amount of milk in this recipe. You should probably use at least a 4 quart saucepan. I tried to make this recipe months ago, but I used to small of a pot and it boiled over and became a sticky mess.

Cocoa Fudge
3 cups of sugar
1 1/2 cups of milk
2/3 cup of cocoa
1/4 cup margarine or butter (1/2 stick)
1 tsp vanilla
Combine the milk, sugar and cocoa in a saucepan big enough so that the mixture does not boil over. Mix well to be sure all the cocoa is absorbed. Cook on high constantly stirring until it boils; then lower the temperature to medium. Cook until it reaches soft ball stage. Add the butter and vanilla. Do not stir. Allow to cool for 10 minutes or so, then stir, stir STIR until it gets thick and looks like wet cement. Immediately pour onto a buttered dish and chill.


I got a recipe from a yahoo! group I joined titled "Cherry Creams". It looked like they would be good, but I didn't have cherry flavoring, candied cherries or half and half! So, what did I do? I had an idea. I used 1/2 tsp peppermint extract (instead of cherry flavoring), crushed homemade peppermint hard candy (instead of candied cherries), and raw goat milk (instead of the light cream or half-and-half). The raw goat milk is from our own goats, and is creamy enough to substitute for light cream in this recipe. The goats that we milk are nubians, mini nubians, alpines, and a couple boer/nubian crosses. For more info on the goats etc. go to or .

Anyway, they turned out great! And 1/2 tsp peppermint extract (NOT oil) was plenty of mint flavor. I said NOT oil because oil is way stronger. I'm sure you could use peppermint oil, but only a few drops. I didn't want to use up all of the chocolate chips I have, so I rolled them in powdered (confectioners') sugar, and cocoa powder. Oh yeah, I also mixed in some green (and a little yellow) food coloring with the flavoring. I've made them twice, and the second time I used the mint extract and food coloring, but I put it in an 8x8 pan and pressed some chocolate chips in the top. I cut it in squares, put some in a container and gave it as a birthday present to a friend who likes mint and chocolate.

I was also thinking of how many other flavors of these creams you could do. I thought of over 5 other flavors that sounded good. If I make any other flavors of this recipe, I'll post it here, Lord willing.

Okay, here's the recipe I received (without the changes I did):

Cherry Creams

2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup light cream or half-and-half
1 tablespoon light-colored corn syrup
1/4 cup finely chopped candied cherries
Few drops cherry flavoring
1 pound dipping chocolate or confectioner's coating

Butter the sides of a heavy 2-quart saucepan. In pan combine sugar, water, cream, and corn syrup. Cook over medium-high heat to boiling, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to dissolve sugar. This should take 5 to 6 minutes. Avoid splashing mixture on sides of pan.

Carefully clip candy thermometer to pan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until thermometer registers 240 degree F, soft-ball stage. Mixture should boil at a moderate, steady rate over entire surface. Reaching soft-ball stage should take 15 to 20 minutes.

Remove pan from heat. Cool, without stirring, to 110 degree F. This should take about 45 minutes. Remove thermometer. Beat with wooden spoon until candy is just beginning to thicken; add candied cherries and cherry flavoring. Continue beating until creamy and slightly stiff. This should take about 5 minutes total.

Shape candy into 1-inch balls; place balls on waxed paper. Let stand about 20 minutes or until dry. Melt dipping chocolate or confectioner's coating. Dip balls into the melted chocolate. Let stand until dry. Store tightly covered in a cool, dry place. 

Makes about 40 pieces.

Note: If desired, immediately after shaping the candy into 1-inch balls, roll the balls in sifted powdered sugar or finely chopped nuts instead of dipping them into melted chocolate.

Heating the mixture

Gathering the ingredients

Pwd. sugar



Yahoo! Groups

I just wanted to recommend a couple of good candy, cake and cookie yahoo groups you can join for free. They will send emails with recipes and information right into your email inbox. I might add more links to more groups as I join other good groups.

Candy-Recipes - this group sends many, many candy recipes! I have got several good recipes from here. Click here to join the group - there is a button above on the right of the page.

Cake-and-Cookie - this group is very helpful about cake and cookie decorating and recipes about cake and cookies. Click here to join.

The Food Allergy Kitchen - is a allergen-free recipe exchange group. Click here to join.

Gluten-free Recipe Swap - this group is my favorite yahoo group - they are very helpful and supportive, and share great GF recipes. This group is created by Carrie of Ginger Lemon Girl. Click here to join.

~ Hanunyah

new design + name

As of 1-3-12: I've re-named my blog name (which used to be "Hanunyah's Sweet Creations") to "Ranch Girl's Sweets 'N' Treats". "Sweet Creations" is a pretty common name, so I figured I'd change it to something a little different ;). My URL is still the same, though.

Also, a big thanks goes to my older sister (@ who has re-designed my blog and fixed-up all of the HTML. So, I hope you enjoy the new layout!