As a continuation from my Best of 2009 – Savory Bites, I wanted to also post about my favorite sweets and desserts from the year. Why two categories? Mainly because I am terrible at prioritizing awesome tasting food and couldn’t just make one generic top list. But also because well, sweet things deserves their own section. Most of these include chocolate in some for or other, though not all… So here they are!
Macarons, Gluten Free
After three different attempts during the year, I finally got a handle on the infamously difficult macaron cookie. Naturally gluten free as they are made with egg whites, almonds and sugar, and deliciously textured with a crunchy outside and chewy middle, I am very happy with myself to finally create a decent macaron. Not 100% perfect yet, but definitely a success.
Mini Apple Pies, Gluten Free
I made these for Thanksgiving with my in-laws, and they were a huge hit, among both the gluten free family members as well as everyone else. These little hand-held pies were perfect as a smaller portioned dessert after a rather large meal of all sorts of wonderful food, and I am told they reheated rather well to become breakfast in the morning too
White Chocolate Pumpkin Truffles, Gluten Free
These were a Halloween treat, and quite an adventure as working with white chocolate tends to be. But the end result was definitely more than worth all of the work that went into them!
While my only recipe on this list that I have not been able to adapt to gluten free, these were worth the mention. Little bars of currants and apples sandwiched between two shortbread-like crusts, they were my take on a rather traditional Scottish dessert.
Maple Pumpkin Crème Brûlée, Gluten Free
I made this dessert for my husband on our first anniversary. My love of pumpkin treats will never end, and there is very good reason to have two pumpkin related desserts in my top 9 this year!
California Style Cheesecake, Gluten Free
This was a rather vintage recipe of my mother’s from when she was growing up. I love it, and this cheesecake is our family’s “classic” rather than the more popular New York style that one would typically find. Still a dense cheesecake, but softer and creamier with a vanilla and sour cream layer on top.
Lemon Almond Cake with Strawberry Chocolate Port Wine Sauce, Gluten Free
This cake was a very simple adaptation from an orange cake recipe, but the real star here was that strawberry and chocolate port wine sauce, which can go over so many things, not just this cake….
French Toast with Strawberry Compote (Gluten Free adaptable)
I made so many wonderful things with strawberries this past summer – now that it is the dead of winter, I am missing farm fresh strawberries terribly. But come next summer, I will be making this French toast again for sure. Making French toast from scratch and topping it with this compote and homemade whipped cream is what earns this breakfast a place in my sweets and desserts line-up. Because if there ever were a “candy for breakfast” dish, this French toast is it.
These were what I consider my first real gluten free baking/dessert success. While I did not create the recipe, I did use my own concoction of gluten free flours, which was a bit ambitious considering this was my first time making elcairs and profiteroles, ever. The pastry cream was rather easy to adapt, but I am sure that the choux pastry recipe needs a little tweaking – but texture and consistency-wise they were right on. And oh were they delicious….
2009 was a great year, I can’t wait to see what 2010 will bring!