Cornmeal Pancakes With Gingered Plum Compote

When I saw this recipe in the My New Roots cookbook, I knew immediately I wanted to make it. I just had to wait until there were plums available in the grocery store.

According to Wikipedia, compote is:

A dessert originating from medieval Europe, made of whole or pieces of fruit in sugar syrup. Whole fruits are cooked in water with sugar and spices. The syrup may be seasoned with vanilla, lemon or orange peel, cinnamon sticks or powder, cloves, other spices, ground almonds, grated coconut, candied fruit, or raisins. The compote is served either warm or cold.

I’ve never had compote, at least not that I can remember, so I was looking forward to making this on my own and the little one likes plums.

You actually have to make the batter the night before and let it sit in the fridge overnight. I had the Hubs make up the batter for me while I went for a run. So when you’re ready to cook, you just add a bit of milk (or nut milk) to soften it up and then get to cooking.

The compote was easy. Then again I didn’t know what to expect because I’ve never had it nor have I ever cooked it. I will tell you that you’re supposed to start out with 12 plums, but the little one had a few so I think I ended up with 9. There are 10 in the photo but one was off.


You slice up the fruit and add it with a few other things. One ingredient in the compote is cardamom. I didn’t have ground cardamom, so I opened up some green cardamom that I had and ground those seeds.

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Sorry about the focus in the above photo, but I was trying to get a close up of the little seeds. When I opened up a pod, there were at least 6 little bitty seeds inside. I opened a few pods and then ground the seeds up.

According to the Flavor Thesaurus:

Open a jar of cardamom pods and you might be reminded of a vapor rub or sinus-clearing stick. Like bay leaves and rosemary, cardamom contains clear notes of camphor and eucalyptus. As a member of the ginger family, it also has a citrus floral quality; depending on their country of origin, cardamoms are likely to be stronger in eucalyptus or floral-citrus flavors. Whichever dominates, those fresh notes are good for cutting through fattiness, especially with ingredients that let the spice’s complexity of flavor shine–e.g., cream, chocolate, nuts or buttery rice.

When I smelled the cardamom, I couldn’t quite put my finger on what the scent reminded me of. But now that I just read that entry, it did remind me a bit of Vicks VapoRub.

This is the compote almost done


I let the little one do a taste test, but he loved it so much I had to give him a small bowl of it before I even started on the pancakes!

The pancakes were simple. You just spoon a bit of the batter into a pan and cook. Then serve the pancakes with the compote on top.


I think the Hubs and I each had three pancakes and the little one had 1.5. There was plenty of compote leftover so the Hubs and little one had french toast with the compote for breakfast the next day.

This dish was easy, quick, and SUPER tasty. I think the only problem I encountered was that there wasn’t enough batter. The pancakes and compote were that good that everyone wanted more! Next time, I’ll double up on the batter and make sure I have 12 plums for the compote. I highly recommend that y’all make this recipe. It’s just too good to pass up!!


Oyster Mushroom Bisque

Happy Monday everyone! Sorry for not posting over the weekend. I was busy trying to clean things up before the in-laws arrive on Thursday. I finally got to trim back my roses that are out front. I’m thinking about digging up two of them. They’re not doing too well and one of them had a whole bunch of worms on it!! I’m thinking about planting hygrangeas in their place, but I’m going to wait until my father-in-law arrives so he can help me.

One day towards the end of last week, we had oyster mushroom bisque from the My New Roots cookbook. But it wasn’t oyster mushrooms. I used cremini mushrooms because that’s all what my grocery store had. So, here is my adaptation.

This soup was easy and really quick to make. Bisque is often made with cream…that’s why the soup is creamy. In Sarah Britton’s version, she uses a vegan option to make the soup creamy. I won’t tell you what it is. You’ll have to get her cookbook and try it yourself.

One ingredient in this soup is thyme. Mushrooms and thyme are on my no-no list. I haven’t had a chance to try to reintroduce either yet so I thought, “I’m just going to do two at one time.”

I love thyme…the fresh stuff. I think the plant is just so delicate and pretty. It’s really pretty and dainty looking when it has those little bitty purple flowers.


Here’s a quote from the Flavor Thesaurus:

Common thyme is the type you brush past on the mountain trails and coastal paths of the Mediterranean; strong, with a sweet, herbaceous warmth that can tip into smokiness or a medicinal quality. For me, thyme is the essence of the word herbal–almost neutrally so–and forms the backbone of a bouquet garni or herbes de Provence. Its bittersweet, aromatic flavor flourishes in slow-cooked tomato sauces, braised meat dishes and bean stews. It also brings a tantalizing hint of lush pasture to dairy, and increasingly turns up in sweet dishes.

You chop up your mushrooms and cook it for a bit with some other vegetables and the thyme.


While those are cooking, you put some vegetable broth in a blender along with the “secret ingredient,” and blend. This forms the creamy part of the soup.


Once that is smooth and creamy to your liking, pour it into the pot with the vegetables. Let it cook for a bit and then add everything back in the blender. Then BLEND! After mine was blended, I poured it back into the pot to warm up a bit more. IMG_4668

Once you feel it’s warm enough, if you added it back to the pot, laddle some in a bowl and drizzle some olive oil on top with a bit of pepper.


OMG this soup was DIVINE! It was REALLY good and SUPER quick to make. The little one finished all of his and said “MORE!” So, he ended up having 1.5 bowls of this soup. I LOVED it!! However, I don’t know if it was the mushrooms or the thyme, but I ended up feeling sick later that evening followed by the obligatory headache that usually follows these sick episodes. Usually I’ll say no dish is worth feeling like this but this one I’ll say feeling sick was totally worth it.

Italian Bean Balls and Spaghetti Squash

Last night we had Italian bean balls and spaghetti squash from Oh She Glows. I can go into details with this one because the recipe is online. This one is different from another bean balls recipe I made. I think the other one I tried called for navy beans or cannellini beans, but this one called for red kidney beans.

This is my adaptation of Angela Liddon’s recipe.

First, you start off by roasting your spaghetti squash. You put your oven up to 400F, slice your squash, scoop out all the seeds, place it in a pan flesh side up, drizzle olive oil on it, and sprinkle it with salt and pepper. Let the squash roast for about 45 minutes.

I worked on the bean balls while the squash was roasting. I didn’t roast my walnuts simply because I didn’t have time. I started supper a bit late last night, and the little one becomes a little monster if he’s not eating by 5:15. I did use the walnuts, they just weren’t toasted.

I used Bob’s Red Mill wheat free oats for my bean balls.


You grind them up into a flour in your food processor. Then you’ll mix it in with some grated carrot, parsley, basil, sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, and walnuts. I didn’t add parsley or the sun-dried tomatoes to mine. Parsley doesn’t agree with me and I probably should’ve added the sun-dried tomatoes. I haven’t used them in a while because they’re packed in oil with spices that I couldn’t have while I was doing my elimination diet. Even now, I’m not too sure if parsley is used in the oil, so it was safer for me to just leave it out.

Next, put your kidney beans into the food processor and grind them up into a chunky paste. Then mix the beans in with the oat mixture.


And now, introducing the flax-seed egg. Oh how I’ve missed you! I couldn’t have flax seeds because they were on my no-no list, but I’m glad that I can now have them because I love using them as an egg substitute.


Make your flax-seed egg and let it sit for a few seconds. Mix it in with your bean ball mixture and add the remaining herbs and spices.

She says to roll them into tightly packed balls about the size of a golf ball, and it should yield 18-20 balls. I did that but I ended up with 10 balls, but that was ok.

IMG_4660Let them bake at 350 for 20 minutes. She does say to flip them and bake them again for another 20 minutes, but I didn’t have time. By the time the required 20 minutes came, it was approaching 5:30 and the little one kept coming into the kitchen. So, I served them after baking about 25 minutes.

The little one had his with quinoa pasta. I let him pour the pasta in a pot and put the salt in. He loved that. However, the Hubs and I had ours with spaghetti squash.


I sprinkled nutritional yeast on mine and the little ones dishes. The dinner was lovely and the little one said “more!” when he finished his first bowl. Because the balls had beans (protein), I was full for the evening. I’m gonna make this dish again. I might even make it for the in-laws!

Savory Spring Hand Pies

Well hello there! It’s been a while hasn’t it? I’m sorry. I promise I’ll be better. So, to make up for it I have two posts for you today. GASP!! So here it goes with post #1.

The other day, we had savory spring hand pies from My New Roots. I can’t go into too much detail because it’s from her cookbook. I’ll tell you about my version of her recipe.

She does call for spelt flour, which she uses a lot. This is an excerpt about spelt from her cookbook:

Spelt, a grain with a five-thousand-year-old history is experiencing a resurgence in popularity due to its wonderful taste, versatility, and nutritional content. Spelt does contain gluten, but gluten-sensitive people can tolerate spelt better than any other grain, as its gluten structure breaks down more easily than the gluten found in hybridized wheat (however, those with celiac disease must avoid spelt). It works just as well as standard wheat flour, and it offers higher amounts of protein and fiber and a broader spectrum of nutrients. Spelt also has special carbohydrates called mucopolysaccharides, which play an important role in stimulating the immune system.

So there you go. I think in a previous post I stated wrong about people with celiac disease being able to tolerate this flour. I can’t handle gluten or wheat, and I’ve been curious about spelt but I’m too chicken to try it.

So, for this recipe I used an all-purpose gluten-free flour. I’ve never cooked with this flour before so I had no idea how it would react to anything. This is the flour I used. The consistency of the flour reminded me of cornstarch.


You make a dough and let it sit for a bit. Here’s my dough ball.


While that was sitting for a while, I went to work on the filling. Part of the filling calls for caraway seeds. I’ve never worked with them before. IMG_4647

They remind me of how fennel seeds look, but there’s a VERY different scent. They have a light licorice scent that reminds me of a very light spearmint. It almost smells like chewing gum! The side of the bottle says:

Caraway Seeds have a dill and licorice like flavor that is great in rye bread, cakes, and cookies. Perfect with cabbage, carrots, spinach, beets, and turnips. Add to coleslaw and potato salad or homemade biscuits.

My trusty Flavor Thesaurus didn’t have an entry for them, but my Cook’s Wisdom did:

Caraway seed is a member of the parsley family. It has a strong, pungent taste that is closely identified with rye bread. Caraway seed is used in many other breads throughout northern and central Europe and is added to rich meat and poultry dishes and casseroles. It is almost always used whole.

Either way, I liked them. I can’t remember what rye bread tastes like, but if I can use caraway seeds again, I’ll be happy to.

I got to work on the rest of the filling and the caraway seeds made the kitchen smell lovely!

IMG_4648I let it cool and went to work on my dough. I had to divide it into six little balls.


There was no need to flour the surface because they weren’t sticky at all. If you get the cookbook and look at the recipe, you’ll see why. I divided them up and squeezed and squeezed trying to work the dough a bit more. Working with the gluten-free flour was a bit hard. When I thought I had worked the dough enough, I tried to roll them out but it just wasn’t working.

IMG_4650You can see how it’s not holding together all that well. It’s because there’s no gluten to glue things together. There is xantham gum in this flour, before you ask. Oh well. I worked with what I had and I was determined to make it work.

However, the dough just didn’t want to cooperate. It was breaking in places and just wasn’t all that pliable. I did try to salvage it and made them work though. You can see from the following photos how the dough was.

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You put the filling in and fold it over and seal it with a fork on the edges. I left two pies as vegan for me, but I put ham in four for the Hubs and little one.

You let them bake for a while, “or until lightly golden.” Mine didn’t come out golden at all. They came out looking exactly like how I put them in…white. So, I let them sit in the oven for five extra minutes and took them out.


I think that extra five minutes did them in because the edges were CRISPY!! When the Hubs and I ate the edges, it sounded like we were eating rocks. Naturally we didn’t give the edges to the little one. He gladly ate up the inside of the pies with some ketchup though. The pies were a bit dry. However, this won’t stop me from trying to make it again. I’ll just have to experiment with another gluten-free flour blend.

If you decide to make this recipe, it does taste good.