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Vintage Sourdough Biscuits

Vintage Sourdough Biscuits // Karista's Kitchen

What could be more comforting or more satisfying than a big ole Vintage Sourdough Biscuit? Biscuits are total comfort food for me.

Not only are biscuits comforting but they have the most wonderful and inviting texture that makes my taste buds happy.

I created this particular photo and recipe for a fun food article all about wild west chuckwagon dinners. Back in the old west days, sourdough biscuits were considered a special treat when dining at the Chuckwagon.  The Chuckwagon cook would make a sourdough starter and keep it on the wagon in a dark ceramic crock and use it for biscuits, breads and sweets.

When I was growing up in the south, my sweet neighbor, who we called Aunt Nancy, used to make all sorts of baked goods. One of those baked goods was sourdough biscuits. I remember being amazed by her culinary prowess and how she’d whip up those vintage sourdough biscuits so easily; and just in time for the evening meal.

You can find several recipes online to make your own sourdough starter, which takes about 3-4 weeks.  Or, you can order sourdough starters online and then keep them going in your kitchen for these biscuits, breads and special treats throughout the year. I especially like having this starter on hand for holiday biscuit baking. Which is when most of my biscuit making seems to happen.

It’s still hot here and vintage sourdough biscuits don’t seem quite appropriate for the weather. But it is September and I say, let the baking begin! 

Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love,


Vintage Sourdough Biscuits

Serving Size: 8 biscuits

Vintage Sourdough Biscuits


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 6 tablespoons cold butter, cubed
  • 1 cup unfed sourdough starter


  • Pre-heat the oven to 425F.
  • Whisk together the all-purpose flour, salt, sugar, baking soda and baking powder. Add the cold butter to the flour mixture and then using a pastry cutter, cut the butter into the flour until it resembles little crumbles.
  • Stir in the sourdough starter and mix until the dough comes together. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead the dough into a small disc. Wrap the disc in plastic wrap and refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes. This isn’t absolutely necessary; however, I find that cooling the dough keeps the butter from getting too soft and yields a flakier biscuit.
  • To make the biscuits, add a little flour to the top of the disc and then roll out the dough to about ¾ of an inch thick. Cut biscuits with a 2 or 3-inch biscuit cutter and then place them in a buttered cast iron skillet, round cake pan or pie plate.
  • Place the pan in the oven and bake for about 12-15 minutes or when the biscuits are golden on top. Remove the biscuits from the oven and let them cool for about 5 minutes. Serve with jam, honey and butter or slices of ham and cheese.
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    Karista's Kitchen Kid Friendly Life Around My Table Sweets

    Pumpkin Coconut Tarts with Caramel Sauce

    Pumpkin Coconut Tarts with Caramel Sauce // Karista's Kitchen

    It’s the weekend and I think we need something sweet like these adorable Pumpkin and Coconut Tarts with Caramel Sauce! 

    It’s that time of year when I jump into all things pumpkin and I couldn’t be more excited.  I’m whipping up a pumpkin chili, pumpkin cornbread to go with that chili, these tasty pumpkin coconut tarts with caramel sauce and Sunday I’ve planned pumpkin pancakes with cinnamon maple syrup – or maybe some pumpkin crepes with cinnamon cream.  Ok, I’ve gone totally pumpkin overboard.

    When there’s a chill in the air and the leaves begin to turn their brilliant shades of red, orange and yellow, I find myself pulling out my fall sweaters and setting out my cozy sofa blanket.  And of course creating all things pumpkin and Autumn and delicious.  All I need now is my chai tea and I’ll be set.

    This is my favorite time of the year.  Although the summer months were filled with fun and frolic and food from the grill, this new season seems to invigorate me and inspire a new collection of recipes as well as a seasonal change in how I frolic and fun. 😉

    Sun Dried Tomato Pesto with Ricotta, Shrimp and Pasta // Karista's Kitchen and A View to Delicious Magazine

    Speaking of a new collection of recipes… (you know I had to mention the magazine) I’ve created several new recipes for our first digital food magazine, A View to Delicious.  Butternut Squash Gratin, Sun Dried Tomato Pesto with Ricotta, Pasta and Shrimp (and a drizzle of truffle oil just for fun), Roasted Chicken with Brandy Butter and more! So if you’re looking for Fall recipe inspiration be sure to click here and download your copy.

    Back to dessert… these Pumpkin Coconut Tarts with Caramel Sauce are the perfect small portion size with just enough sweetness that is slightly spiced, rich and creamy.  They make the loveliest after dinner nibble or perfect with a mid-morning cup of coffee.

    However you serve these pumpkin coconut tarts with caramel sauce, I’m certain once they’re gone, you’ll be asked for more. 

    Cheers to the new season, cozy blankets, hot spiced tea and delicious desserts!

    Loads of Love,


    Pumpkin Coconut Tarts with Caramel Sauce

    Serving Size: Makes 8-10 tarts

    Pumpkin Coconut Tarts with Caramel Sauce

    These little tarts make the most delicious ending to a delicious meal. They also make fun and tasty after school treats and on occasion, a quick nibble with morning coffee, sans the caramel sauce. However you enjoy them, they will delight the palate and enchant the sweet tooth.


      Pie Dough (Pate Brisee):
    • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour or pastry flour
    • 1 teaspoon sugar
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • 6 tablespoons very cold unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch pieces
    • 1 large egg
    • 1 teaspoon ice water
      Pumpkin Coconut Filling
    • 1 15 ounce can organic canned pumpkin puree (you can also substitute with sweet potato puree)
    • ½ cup granulated sugar
    • 1 cup organic canned coconut milk (do not use “lite” coconut milk)
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
    • ¼ teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
    • 3 large eggs
    • Pinch of salt
      Caramel Sauce
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 6 tablespoons butter
    • ½ cup heavy cream
    • Pinch of salt
    • Dash of vanilla or brandy


    For the Pate Brisee
  • If you don’t have pastry flour on hand, combine 2 parts all purpose flour with 1 part cake flour. (I keep this combination handy in a separate container, so I always have some ready to use.)
  • Combine the flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to mix.
  • Add the cold butter to the flour mixture and pulse a few more times until the butter and flour resemble coarse pea sized pieces or a coarse meal.
  • As you pulse the food processer add the egg and water and pulse only until the dough is holding together in one piece.
  • Turn out the dough onto a floured surface and knead just a few times forming the dough into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour or so, or overnight. Often I’ll make several batches of pate brisee and then keep them wrapped in the freezer, pulling them out when I know I’ll need them.
  • Remove the chilled disk from the refrigerator and roll it out with a wooden rolling pin. With a biscuit cutter or mouth of a drinking glass, cut out discs large enough to press into the mini tart pans. Fill all the mini tart pans and then place in the refrigerator until you are ready to fill them with the pumpkin filling.
  • Pumpkin Coconut Filling
  • In an electric mixer or blender, combine all the ingredients until well blended.
  • Caramel Sauce
  • In a medium sauce pan over medium low heat mix together the sugar, butter, heavy cream and pinch of salt. Add a dash of vanilla if you like, or a dash of brandy.
  • Whisk the ingredients until it comes to a boil and then let it simmer for about 5-8 minutes or until it thickens.
  • Let it cool slightly and serve over the Pumpkin Coconut Tarts or Vanilla ice cream.
  • Finishing up
  • Pre-heat the oven to 350F.
  • Place all the mini tart pans on a baking sheet and fill each mini tart pan with pumpkin coconut filling.
  • Place the baking sheet of tarts in the oven and bake for about 35-40 minutes or until the filling is nicely firm and crusts are golden.
  • While the tarts are baking prepare the caramel sauce.
  • Once the tarts are done, remove them from the oven and let them cool. Remove each tart and place onto a small dessert plate. Top with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce. Toasted coconut makes a love garnish but is optional.
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    Karista's Kitchen Kid Friendly Sassy Side dishes vegetarian

    Chive Blossom Popovers from Pink Patisserie

    Chive Blossom Popovers

    Chive Blossom Popovers

    I love seasonal, I love fresh, especially fresh from the garden or local farm, and I love my friend Maria.

    Maria is the author of the baking blog Pink Patisserie.  I’ve known Maria for over 10 years.  A gracious, beautiful and talented gal who hails from deep Norwegian roots.  Immersed in her family’s heritage, Maria has been baking along side her Mother and Grandmother since childhood.  She has an artistic eye for the naturally beautiful art of food and baking, and embraces the flavors of the sweet and the seasons.

    Thank you Maria for your most delicious spring recipe of Chive Blossom Popovers!

    CHIVE BLOSSOM POPOVERS from Pink Patisserie

    Hello!  My name is Maria of Pink Patisserie, and I want to extend a huge thank you to my lovely friend Karista for allowing me to guest write here today on her beautiful blog.

    One of the things I love about Karista is her wholehearted devotion to cooking seasonally. In light of that I thought it appropriate to share with you a recipe that had at least one seasonal ingredient.  Here in the Pacific Northwest as in most of the country, rhubarb is currently in season.  As a result, I have been raiding my vegetable patch almost weekly to pull the latest of the ripening stalks for the many recipes I love to make this time of year.  Last week while in the garden surveying the rhubarb, I happened to glance in the oft-neglected corner of my garden where my chive plants grow.  To my great surprise I noticed that the chive flowers were almost fully in bloom. In all my rhubarb furor I’d completely overlooked them.

    chive blossom popovers

    Chive Blossom Popovers

    Chives are so simple to grow really, one of the most low maintenance plants, and if you don’t have one I encourage you to head to the nursery now to pick one up.  They grow beautifully in pots too if you are space challenged.  And in the summer, I love nothing more than to run out and snip some for salads and baked or boiled potatoes.  This recipe for chive blossom popovers is lovely with the blossoms, but really if you don’t have a plant, don’t worry; they taste just as fantastic without them.

    Our favorite way to eat these is at dinner, with steaks or a lovely roast on a Sunday afternoon. Fresh, light spring onion flavors in a buttery, crispy bun.  Simply seasonal, simply spring, simply heaven.

    Chive Blossom Popovers

    Serves 12

    Prep time 10 minutes

    Bake time 30


    2 T. unsalted butter, melted

    1 ½ C. all purpose flour

    ¾ tsp.  Kosher salt

    3 large eggs

    1 ½ C. milk

    4 T. chopped chives with blossoms, reserve additional blossoms for garnish


    Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

    Grease popover pans or large muffin tins with butter, about ½ tsp per muffin well.  Place the pan in the oven for 3-4 minutes to preheat.

    In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, salt, eggs, milk and melted butter until no lumps remain.  Batter will be thin. Fill each well in the popover or muffin tin halfway with batter. Bake for 30 minutes.  Avoid opening the oven door while baking.   Serve with chive butter.

    Karista's Kitchen Kid Friendly Sweets vegetarian

    Spiced Banana Bread

    Moist banana bread recipe with fresh ground spices and buttermilk

    Spiced Banana Bread

    A really good banana bread is like a dear friend.  A friend that has been with you through thick and thin, and all of the in between.  A constant in one’s life with fortitude that transcends the test of time.

    Banana bread is enticing to the palate, earthy in color and fragrant in aroma.  It never deviates.  One can always count on consistent flavor.  That is of course if one follows the recipe.

    I would not be that one.

    Banana Bread recipe with fresh ground spices and buttermilk

    Fragrant and Enticing Spiced Banana Bread

    I had to do it.  I had to deviate.  I ended up deviating several times and thankfully ended up with this lovely little version of my most favorite banana bread.

    Only spicier.  😉

    Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love,


    Spiced Banana Bread


    ¾ cup dark brown sugar or coconut palm sugar

    ¼ cup olive oil

    1 large egg

    1 cup mashed very ripe bananas (2-3 large bananas)

    ¾ cup buttermilk

    2 cups flour (1 ½ cups all-purpose + ½ cup cake flour)

    1 teaspoon baking soda

    ½ teaspoon baking powder

    ¼ teaspoon salt

    1 teaspoon spice blend (if you don’t like coriander, omit; or sub with 3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom and 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves)

    1 teaspoon coriander seeds

    3 cardamom pods

    1 clove

         Heat a small pan over high heat and toast the spices. Once toasted let them cool for a few minutes and then grind in a spice grinder.  This should give you about 1 rounded teaspoon of spices.

    Diagonally sliced bananas for garnish.


    Pre-heat the oven to 400F.  Grease a medium size loaf pan 9×5.

    Mix together the sugar, olive oil and egg until smooth and blended.  Add the mashed banana and buttermilk and blend until incorporated.

    Mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spice blend.  Gently mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until nicely incorporated.

    Pour into the baking pan and lay sliced bananas diagonally onto the top of the batter.  Sprinkle with brown sugar or coconut sugar.

    Bake at 400F for about 15 minutes.  Then turn the heat down to 350F and bake for another 30 minutes or until the bread is done.

    Cool for about 10 minutes before slicing.

    Check out these delicious Banana posts!

    Karista's Kitchen Sweets vegetarian

    Garam Masala Spiced Pear Galette with Dark Chocolate Sauce

    pear galette

    Garam Masala Spiced Pear Galette with Dark Chocolate Sauce

    My culinary journey has been a winding road.  Sometimes with hairpin turns and sometimes with steep uphill jogs. (If you know me, you know I am NOT a jogger) A few downhill walks and some lovely flat, grassy roads have led me from the past to the present.

    And it seems that in every phase, I gain a little more passion and a bit more vision into my culinary world.  Often scribbling words that become my foodie quotes.  Pieces of paper with the written word littering the top of my desk.  I find notes in my handbags, in my drawers,  in my files, and a few found their way into the kitchen junk drawer.  🙂

    Today, I often find myself thinking of this quote.  The one that truly speaks my heart. “Food should not only satisfy our hunger, it should feed our soul and nourish our bodies while delighting our senses”.  So with every recipe I create, or cook, or teach, this is always my reminder.

    Pear Galette

    Delighting the senses is exactly what I had in mind when I created this dish.  I’m often asked to review new food products. Most of them I turn down.  However, a few have captured my attention.

    The Spicy Gourmet company contacted me and asked if I would review their new line of organic and fair trade spices.  They had me at organic and fair trade.  But would flavor be just as impressive?  I was delighted and intrigued.

    Dinesh Perera of The Spicy Gourmet sent me the Classic Garam Masala Spice Kit.  So off to testing I went.

    Thinking seasonal, thinking spicy, thinking holiday parties made me think of something sweet.  Festive and just a little indulgent.  But just a little.  😉

    Garam Masala Spiced Pear Galette with Dark Chocolate Sauce.  A little spicy, a little saucy and a lot of delicious.  The Classic Garam Masala is an exquisite spicy blend, perfect for all savory dishes.  But I loved the idea of this spicy blend in a sweet dish.

    I did cut the black pepper in half as well as the cumin and then added in a little ginger and nutmeg.  Perfect.

    I adore fresh, whole, spices, ground as needed for optimum flavor.  I was so impressed with the quality, taste and fragrance of my new spices, I chucked my old bottles of cardamom and cloves!

    Many thanks to Dinesh Perera at The Spicy Gourmet for allowing me the opportunity to test their products.  This is a small company with big flavor.

    Wishing you all a happy, healthy and most delicious holiday season.

    Loads of Love,


    Garam Masala Spiced Pear Galette with Dark Chocolate Sauce

    Serves 6-8


    Galette Dough

    2 ½ cups all-purpose flour

    1 cup cold butter, cubed

    ½ teaspoon salt

    1 tablespoon sugar

    ½ cup ice-cold water


    3-4 pears, sliced

    1 tablespoon butter, diced

    2 teaspoons Spicy Gourmet Garam Masala*

    ½ teaspoon Ginger

    ¼ teaspoon nutmeg

    1/3 cup sugar (I love using Coconut Palm Sugar in this recipe)

    Chocolate Drizzle

    4 ounces dark chocolate

    ¼ cup heavy cream

    2-3  tablespoons water


    Prepare the dough –  In a food processor add the flour, salt, sugar and butter and pulse until the ingredients resemble coarse crumbs.

    While the food processor is on slowly add ½ cup water.  The dough should form a ball to one side of the food processor bowl.  If the dough is too dry, add a little more water.

    Place the dough in the center of plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.

    Prepare the filling – Place the pears in a large bowl and toss with the diced butter, Garam Masala, ginger and nutmeg.

    Pre-heat the oven to 400F.

    Roll out the dough into a large circle.  Place the galette dough on a parchment lined baking sheet.

    Reserve about 5-6 slices of pear.  Place the remaining pears in the center of the galette dough, leaving about a 2 inch border.  Pull up the sides to form an open face tart.  Artfully place the remaining pears on top of the other pears in the center of the galette.  Brush the galette with a little melted butter and sprinkle with a little sugar.

    Place the galette into the oven and bake at 400F for about 15 minutes.  Turn down the heat to 375F and bake for another 20 minutes or until the galette is golden brown.

    While the galette is baking make the chocolate sauce.

    In a double boiler melt the chocolate and whisk in the heavy cream and water until smooth and glossy. Adding all the water if you’d like the sauce a bit thinner.

    When the galette is done, remove from the oven and let it cool for about 5-10 minutes.  Drizzle the chocolate sauce on top, reheating the sauce if necessary.

    Drizzle dessert plates with a little more chocolate sauce and then place slices on top of the sauce. Serve immediately.

    *Each Garam Masala will have a different blend of spices.  I highly recommend blending your own Garam Masala with spices from the Spicy Gourmet.  However, if you have your own Garam Masala blend, or purchased a prepared Garam Masala, be sure it doesn’t include the ginger or nutmeg.  If it does, then feel free to omit the ginger and nutmeg in the recipe, or add in a little less if desired.

    Appetizers Karista's Kitchen vegetarian

    Cambozola and Pear Tart

    karista's Kitchen

    Cambozola and Pear Tart

    I’m going to be a new Mama!  A chicken Mama.  My little baby chicks arrive soon and I’m over the moon excited.

    Ranger Craig spent the last few weeks building my super fabulous chicken coop.  I think I nearly drove him crazy with my constant requests for additions and changes.

    Two levels to roost and two lovely nesting boxes.  It’s really more like a chicken spa. 🙂

    Karista's Kitchen

    My new chicken coop

    This all comes on the heels of building two raised beds for growing edibles, with more edibles mixed into the front yard… which is really now a garden.

    I’m sure neighbors drive by my house thinking “that’s where the crazy lady lives, the one who thinks she’s a farmer”.

    I have a lot more to learn about growing edibles and raising my egg laying hens.  One of my inspirations for my little urban farm is my friend and colleague, Janelle, from the most fabulous Urban Farm and Food Blog, Talk of Tomatoes.

    Janelle put the farm in urban and has transformed her home into a sustainable, productive and beautiful urban farm.  If that isn’t enough, Janelle most recently earned her Master Certificate in Preservation.  Ok, so she’s really more of a Super Woman and to top it off her recipes are outstanding.  When you have a minute, head on over and check out Talk of Tomatoes.

    Karista’s Kitchen

    Soon, my little egg layers will provide me with dozens of beautiful eggs.  Beautiful eggs to create beautifully delicious recipes just like this Cambozola and Pear Tart.  A savory tart bursting with flavors of Fall.   You won’t be able to stop at one slice.  🙂

    Cambozola and Pear Tart

    I love this tart as a light lunch with a salad of baby greens, starter for a dinner party or simply as an afternoon nibble.   I typically don’t post other Chef’s recipes but this particular recipe is just too delicious not to share.  Mary Cech is the author of Savory Baking.  A brilliant little cookbook of savory baked goods that are “warm and inspiring recipes for crisp, crumbly, flaky pastries”.

    Serves 6-8

    Tart Dough

    ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter at room temp

    ¾ teaspoon salt

    1 egg white

    1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

    1 ¼ cups walnut pieces, toasted


    4 ounces Cambozola Cheese

    3 egg yolks

    ¾ cup heavy whipping cream

    ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

    1-2 pears, firm but ripe

    To prepare the Tart Dough

    Put the butter and salt together in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment and process for 30 seconds.  Scrape the bowl with a spatula, add the egg white, and process for another 30 seconds.  The egg white should be thoroughly emulsified into the butter and look smooth.

    Add the flour and walnuts all at once.  Pulse until the walnuts are fine and the dough comes together into a ball, about 1 minute.  Turn the dough out on a floured surface and knead briefly.  Pres into a disc about 1 inch thick and wrap in plastic film. Refrigerate for 15 minutes while preparing the filling.

    Preheat the oven to 350F and place a 9 inch fluted tart pan with a removable bottom on a flat baking sheet.

    Prepare the Filling

    Put the cheese, egg yolks, cream and pepper in the bowl of a food processor.  Process until smooth, about 30 seconds.  Pour the filling into a container with a spout to make it easy for pouring.

    Remove the tart dough from the refrigerator and place on a well-floured surface.  Dust the top of the dough generously with flour.  Using a rolling pin, carefully roll the dough into a 12 inch circle about 1/8 inch thick.  Dust more flour under and on top of the dough to keep it from sticking to the surface while rolling, if needed.

    Slide a flat, rimless baking sheet under the dough and transfer it to the tart pan. (I don’t have a rimless baking sheet so I ended up transferring as carefully as I could and then just pressed it into the tart pan) Center the dough and press it gently into the bottom and sides of the pan.  Patch any tears with dough scraps.  Trim the top edge of the crust with your fingers or a small knife.  Bake until the crust is medium golden brown, 25-30 minutes.  Set the pan on a rack to cool.

    Reduce the oven temperature to 300F.  Stand the pear upright on a cutting board.  With a small paring knife, cut off one side of the pear closest to the core.  Turn the pear around to the opposite side and cut off the other side.  Then cut off the two small sides of the pear and discard the core.  Lay the cut sides on the cutting board and cut each piece of pear into ¼ inch slices.  Place the slices on the bottom of the baked shell, overlapping them like shingles.

    Carefully pour the custard over the pears and return the pan to the center of the oven.  Bake until the custard is set, about 25 minutes.  The top should just start to turn golden and the filling will jiggle slightly in the center.

    Remove it to a rack and let cool slightly.  Remove the ring from the tart, transfer to a serving platter, and serve warm or room temp.  Leftovers can be wrapped in plastic film and refrigerated for up to 3 days.  Remove the tart from the refrigerator, place on a baking sheet, and warm for about 15 minutes at 300F.

    Recipe slightly adapted by Mary Cech

    Urban Farming

    Urban Farm

    Kid Friendly Sweets

    Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Brownies

    A little sweet, for my sweet tooth

    This is the time of year that gets me into trouble.  Yep, I get the baking bug.

    And of course if I bake something, I have to taste test it.  Right?

    Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Brownies

    I also have friends who bake.  And they bake the most delicious treats.  In fact, two of my friends write baking blogs and one of them is a Pastry Chef right here in Seattle.

    Both filled with so much deliciousness, you must click on over and check them out. and  You’re gonna fall in love!

    I’m not sure what possessed me to make these.  I was in the mood for a sweet treat but I wanted something simple to prepare and most delicious to eat.

    I wish I had a really funny story to tell you, or some cute pictures of Tank.  Well, actually, I do have a few cute pictures of Tank.

    Tank needs a haircut

    Tank is handsome now 🙂

    I think these brownies hit the spot.  For the sake of my workout and waistline, I sent most of them on over to my friend’s house and kept a few to enjoy with my coffee later.

    They never made it to the coffee.  I ended up sneaking one as a midnight snack and the other three conveniently disappeared.

    Might be one of the sweet tooth Bennett gals.  😉

    Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Brownies

    Similar to blondies or chocolate chip bar cookies, these divine little treats are less sweet and perfect with coffee or tea.

    I also prepare these with a gluten free flour  that can now be found in most grocery stores.  A few examples are Bob’s Red Mill, Namaste, Gluten Free Mama,  King Arthur

    Makes 12 Squares


    1 ½ cups Wholesome Sweeteners Coconut Palm Sugar or dark brown sugar, packed

    2 eggs

    1 cup peanut butter

    1 cup butter (2 sticks), melted

    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    2 cups all-purpose flour

    ½ teaspoon salt

    2 cups chocolate chips


    Pre-heat the oven to 375F.  Grease a 9×13 baking pan and set aside.

    Whisk together the eggs and sugar and then slowly add the melted butter.

    Then whisk in the peanut butter and vanilla extract until smooth and creamy.

    Next, mix in the 2 cups flour and ½ teaspoon salt.  Then stir in the chocolate chips.

    Pour the brownie batter into the baking pan and bake for about 20-25 minutes or until the brownies are golden brown and done in the center.

    When the brownies have cooled, cut into squares and enjoy!

    Kid Friendly Sweets

    Wild Blackberry Cardamom Cobbler

    Wild Blackberry Cardamom Cobbler

    It’s blackberry picking season!  For about six weeks each year, I tote my bucket all over our mountain looking for those beautiful berries.  The sun warmed berries are sugary sweet this time of year and it feels a little like food heaven.

    Wild Blackberry Cardamom Cobbler

    Blackberry pancakes, blackberry muffins, savory blackberry sauce paired with grilled pork chops, and of course the Bennett Crew’s favorite blackberry dish… Blackberry Cardamom Cobbler.

    Wild Blackberry Cardamom Cobbler

    Every year I tell my Bennett Crew I’m saving some blackberries for making jam.  But that never seems to happen.

    I believe we love those berries too much to wait for jam. 🙁    I really will make that jam next year.

    Blackberry recipes abound this time of year.  Here are few of my favorites!

    Blackberry Lemon Drops from Talk of Tomatoes

    Blackberry Plum Cardamom Jam from Talk of Tomatoes

    Go Big” Back to School Blueberry (or Blackberry) Coffee Cake from Pink Patiserrie

    Apple Blackberry Pie from Eat the Love

    Blackberry Oatmeal Cake from The Bite House

    Wild Blackberry Cardamom Cobbler

    Serves 8-10

    Adapted from multiple sources… but mostly from my Mom.  Mom was the Queen of cobblers when I was a kid.  All sorts of cobblers showed up weekly, sitting on our kitchen table.  Blackberry was my favorite. 🙂

    Pre-heat the oven to 375F.



    6 cups blackberries, blueberries or mixed berries

    ¾ cup organic granulated sugar

    Zest of one lemon and 2 teaspoons lemon juice

    2 tablespoons cornstarch

    2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced


    Gently toss the berries with the sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, cornstarch and butter and set aside.

    Cobbler Crust

    1 stick of unsalted butter, softened (1/2 cup)

    1 cup Coconut sugar (or ¾ cup brown sugar) I use Wholesome Sweeteners Coconut Palm Sugar. This sugar creates a caramel colored cobbler crust with just a hint of toasty caramel flavor.

    3 egg yolks

    ½ cup sour cream

    1 teaspoon vanilla extract

    1 ½ cups all-purpose flour (I used ½ cup cake flour and 1 cup all-purpose flour)

    1 teaspoon baking powder

    ¼ teaspoon baking soda

    1 ½ teaspoon ground cardamom


    Mix together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and cardamom.  Set aside.

    In a kitchen aid mixer or mixing bowl, mix together the soft butter with the coconut or brown sugar until nicely incorporated.  The sugar butter mixture will be a little lumpy looking due to the coconut sugar.  This is normal.

    Mix in the egg yolks, vanilla extract and then the sour cream.  Then slowly mix in the flour mixture until the batter is smooth.

    Putting the Cobbler Together:

    Butter a 9×13 baking dish and then pour the filling into the baking dish.

    Take a muffin, cupcake or ice cream scoop and scoop the cobbler crust batter onto the filling, leaving a few holes to allow the blackberry filling to bubble through.  You don’t have to do this but I think it makes the cobbler look pretty.

    Place the cobbler in the oven and bake for about 35-45 minutes or until the cobbler crust is done and golden brown on top and the filling is hot and bubbly.

    Let the cobbler cool for at least 10-15 minutes.  Serve warm with vanilla bean or blueberry cheesecake ice cream.  Yum!

    Kid Friendly Sweets

    Huckleberry Upside-Down Ginger Cake

    Huckleberry Upside Down Cake

    Huckleberry Upside-Down Ginger Cake

    Pardon my silence these last few weeks.  Life is… Well it’s life.  And sometimes it throws a few curve balls.  The darn thing is, I’m a terrible catcher.

    But I’m a good sprinter and if I can’t catch those curve balls, I can certainly chase them down.

    During my sprint however, I thought about you all, hoping your summer is perfectly grand.  And although my posts have been few, I’ve been testing lots of new recipes to share.

    Huckleberry Upside Down Cake

    Huckleberry Upside-Down Ginger Cake

    I have a lovely stash of  Washington Huckleberries in the freezer that are begging to be used.  I’ve made barbecue sauce and pie with those gorgeous berries. Today, I made cake.

    Because I’m forever the optimist, I thought it would be an easy cake.  I thought wrong.

    It took several test runs before I decided an upside-down cake would work best with the intensely purple crayon colored berries.

    We  now have lots of cake at my house.  I’m sure you guessed that.  🙂  Although some went into the garbage, a piece or two fell onto the floor which Tank happily snapped up, and one cake wasn’t fit to eat. Tank even snubbed a bite.

    The final cake however is fresh, not too sweet, rich in flavor and beautiful in color.

    Wholesome Sweeteners Coconut Sugar

    Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Coconut Palm Sugar

    I used a new sugar I’m completely excited about.  It’s Wholesome Sweeteners new Coconut Palm Sugar.  It gives the cake a rich caramel color and a much deeper caramel flavor than regular dark brown sugar.  A perfectly tasty summer cake.

    Wishing you all a most delicious week!

    Loads of Love, Karista

    You can find Wholesome Sweeteners at most conventional markets along with PCC Natural Markets and Whole Foods Markets. You can also order the sugar from Wholesome Sweeteners.

    Huckleberry Upside-Down Ginger Cake


    Serves 8

    2 cups organic all-purpose flour

    1 teaspoon baking powder

    1 teaspoon baking soda

    1/4 teaspoon salt

    1 1/2  teaspoons ground ginger

    1/2 cup grapeseed oil (substitute with 1/2 cup coconut oil or softened butter)

    3/4 cup Wholesome Sweeteners Coconut Palm Sugar or dark brown sugar

    1 large egg

    1 cup buttermilk (if you don’t have buttermilk on hand, combine just a tad less than one cup milk with one tablespoon white vinegar. Let it sit for about five minutes)

    2 cups fresh huckleberries (or thawed previously frozen) (Blueberries make an excellent substitute for this cake)

    2 tablespoons melted butter

    ¼ cup Wholesome Sweeteners Coconut Palm Sugar or dark brown sugar


    Pre-heat the oven to 400F. Lightly butter an 8×8 baking dish.

    Mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and ground ginger. Set aside.

    In another bowl, or kitchen aid mixer, beat together the oil/butter and sugar. Once combined add the egg, scraping down the sides of the bowl.

    Gently mix in the buttermilk.  Once nicely incorporated, mix in the dry ingredients.

    Add the two tablespoons melted butter to the bottom of the 8×8 baking dish.  Then sprinkle the coconut palm sugar or brown sugar evenly over the butter.

    Spread the 2 cups of berries evenly over the sugar.  Then gently spread the cake batter over the berries.

    Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until the cake is done. It will be nicely golden brown on top and bubbly on the sides.

    Let the cake sit for 5-10 minutes to cool. Then flip the cake onto a platter and enjoy!

    Karista's Kitchen Kid Friendly Sweets

    Confetti Muffins (Zucchini, Carrot and Pineapple Muffins)

    Zucchini, Carrot and Pineapple Muffins

    There comes a moment in time when Mother’s must do what must be done.  Tell a fiblet.

    Not a fib or a lie or even a white lie.  A fiblet.  My youngest gal’s favorite word for a “slight truth”.  You might think me a completely terrible parent for telling a fiblet.  But alas, it’s been necessary a time or two.

    Especially when my youngest gal announced she no longer ate vegetables. I was horrified. How could my child not eat her vegetables?  I’m a chef for Pete’s sake. Aren’t my children supposed to have advanced palates and eat absolutely anything I cook?  Apparently not.

    Confetti Muffins

    So,  I did what any good Mother would do.  I hid veggies in the food.   Mashed potatoes included mashed cauliflower, steamed and finely diced broccoli went into the meatballs and roasted zucchini went into our favorite grilled hamburgers.

    I was on a role.  I was feeling so proud of my ingenuity and cleverness.  And not once did I have to tell a fiblet.  Until the muffins.

    Zucchini, carrot and pineapple muffins.  Yep, I thought to myself, this was going to be great. I’d get my little gal eating veggies for breakfast and dinner.

    As soon as the muffins came out of the oven my little gal was sitting at the counter, ready and waiting for her muffin.  She kept telling me how delicious they smelled, and that these were absolutely going to be her favorite muffins ever!

    My Little Suzie Q

    Then she broke one open and adamantly stated  “What’s all this stuff in my muffin?”  And here’s where that fiblet flew right out of my mouth.  “It’s called a confetti muffin”.  “You know, like those yummy confetti sprinkles we put on cupcakes”.

    Ok, so I know what you’re thinking.  If she’d ask me what the “confetti” was made of I would have come clean and told her. I promise.  But she never asked. (Phew!)

    My little Suzie Q… almost grown up.


    Wishing all you Mom’s loads of love, lots of laughs and giggles, quiet time for yourselves, and true joy.


    Confetti Muffins (Zucchini, Carrot and Pineapple Muffins)

    When I created these muffins I wanted them to be as delicious and health friendly as possible.  So I made lots of substitutions that I believe are all in good health.  Most of the ingredients can now be found at any major grocery store chain.  However, if you have a local natural market or a Whole Foods close by, you’ll definitely find a good selection of these ingredients.  I’ve also included a gluten-free recipe following the whole grain recipe.  Happy Baking!

    Makes 12 muffins


    ½ cup coconut oil (softened) or grapeseed oil

    ½ cup brown sugar or Agave syrup

    2 eggs

    1 ½ teaspoon vanilla

    ½ cup grated fresh zucchini

    ½ cup grated fresh carrot

    ½ cup diced pineapple (fresh or organic canned with no added sugars)

    1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (I like King Aruthur)

    ½ cup all-purpose flour

    1 tablespoon cinnamon

    1 teaspoon baking soda

    ½ teaspoon baking powder

    ½ teaspoon salt


    Pre heat the oven to 350F.

    Line a muffin tin with paper muffin cups.

    Whisk together the softened coconut oil and brown sugar until nicely combined.  Add one egg at a time and whisk until creamy.  Then mix in the vanilla.

    Fold in the zucchini, carrot and pineapple.

    In a separate bowl mix together the wheat and all-purpose flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

    Gently stir the dry mixture into the wet mixture and try (really hard) not to over mix. (I’ve been known to over mix a time or two)  All you want is for both mixtures to be nicely combined.

    Fill the muffin cups about ¾ full.  Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until the muffins are firm to the touch.

    Let the muffins cool on a wire rack before serving.  Enjoy!

    Gluten Free Confetti Muffins

    If you are looking for a simple gluten-free muffin mix, I love Pamela’s gluten-free baking mix.  Follow the basic muffin recipe,  adding in the same amount of veggies and pineapple as the recipe above.  If the muffin batter seems too thin, add a bit more of the gluten-free baking mix.  Bake as directed.

    I prepare these muffins with Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour.  I get a lot of my almond flour recipes from the brilliant gluten-free and paleo blogger, Elana’s Pantry.  She has a delicious selection of gluten-free and paleo friendly recipes on her site.  Here are some blanched almond flour confetti muffins I whipped up… adapted from Elana’s Pantry.


    Makes about 8-10 muffins

    2 cups Honeyville blanched almond flour

    1 tablespoon cinnamon

    1/2 teaspoon baking soda

    1/2 teaspoon baking powder

    1/4 teaspoon salt

    2 eggs

    1 teaspoon vanilla

    1/4 cup grapeseed oil

    1/2 cup agave syrup

    1/2 cup shredded zucchini

    1/2 cup shredded carrots

    1/2 cup diced pineapple


    Preheat the oven to 350F.

    Line a muffin tin with 8-10 muffin cups.

    Whisk together the dry ingredients.  Then whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.  Fold in the veggies and pineapple.

    Bake for about 20 minutes or until the muffins are golden brown and firm to the touch.  Enjoy!


    The Dreamiest Chocoflan

    Nelly Rodriguez de Galofre’s Chocoflan

    Dreamy.  Completely and utterly without fail the most dreamy dessert I’ve tasted since indulging my sweet tooth in a creamy coconut ice cream fudge sundae about one month ago.

    Delicioso Chocoflan

    I don’t eat many sweets.  There’s a good reason for this.  Mostly because once I start, I can’t stop.

    And second, I’m too lazy to make dessert.   I’d rather spend my time in the kitchen creating some sort of fabulously tasty concoction for dinner.

    So I usually leave the dessert making to my two sassy gals.  Or mooch off my friends, who are ever so clever at baking and pastry.


    However, in celebration of Cinco de Mayo I thought I’d pull myself out of my self-imposed ban from baking and whip up something special.

    This is special indeed.  I’m not the biggest fan of flan, unless it’s a flan my brother or sister-in-law prepare.  Combine their flan with a most decadent and moist cake topped with a rich caramel sauce and words cease to flow from my mouth.  Meaning… I’m speechless.  Which doesn’t happen often.  I assure you.

    I’m so excited to post this recipe.  It comes from my beautiful sister-in-law’s Mother, Nelly Rodriguez de Galofre in Colombia, South America.  A beautiful and gracious lady who has so kindly shared her family recipe with me.  I am honored.   Mis mas sinceras gracias a usted dona Nelly!

    My beautiful sister-in-law, Paula and her beautiful Mother, Nelly

    Nelly’s Chocoflan

    Three delightful layers.  Caramel sauce, chocolate cake and flan.  Once this cake is baked, the flan will fall to the bottom of the pan and the cake will rise to the top.  Flip it over and you have Chocoflan!

    I know this recipe looks long, but I’ve been very detailed about each step.  Once you make this cake, you’ll think it a breeze!  Have fun!

    *Use a deep 9 or 10 inch round or square cake pan or a 9 – 10 inch deep bundt pan.  Grease the pan with a little oil.


    Pre-heat the oven to 350F

    For the caramel:

    1 cup sugar

    1/2 cup water

    In a heavy bottom sauce pan add the sugar and water and heat on medium heat.  No need to stir, just swirl the pan around a bit while it’s heating up.  Let the syrup come to a boil and this will allow the water to evaporate and syrup to caramelize.  This may take a little time so just hang out in the kitchen and be patient because when the sugar begins to caramelize it does so quickly. (And before you know it, you’ve burnt the caramel sauce.  Yes, I did this)

    Once the color has turned to a rich golden brown pour the liquid into the bottom of the cake pan and swirl it around until it has coated half way up the sides and bottom of the pan.

    Set it aside while you prepare the cake batter.

    For the Cake:

    2 sticks of butter (or 1/2 lb)

    1 cup sugar

    4 eggs, room temperature

    2 cups all-purpose flour

    1 teaspoon baking powder

    4 tablespoons cocoa powder

    1 teaspoon vanilla

    1/4 cup orange juice

    In an electric mixer blend the butter with the sugar until it’s light and fluffy, almost white.   Whisk in the eggs, one at time until incorporated.  Sift together the 2 cups flour and teaspoon of baking powder and then slowly add this to the creamed sugar.  Once the flour has been added, stir in the cocoa powder.

    Next mix in the orange juice and vanilla.  Once it’s well mixed, pour the cake batter into the cake pan on top of the caramel sauce.

    For the Flan:

    1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk

    In that same can (sweetened condensed milk), add whole milk

    3 eggs

    1 teaspoon vanilla

    Pinch of instant coffee

    In a blender, add all the ingredients and blend well.  Pour this mixture on top of the cake batter, very carefully so you don’t disturb the cake batter.

    To Bake:

    Place a larger cake pan or baking dish in the oven and fill it with about 1 inch of water.  Then place the chocoflan pan in the water bath (bain-marie or bano de maria).  Let the cake bake for about 75 – 90 minutes or until the cake is done.

    Let the cake cool for about an hour.  Then when you are ready to flip the chocoflan, pour some hot water into the larger pan and set the chocoflan pan in the hot water for about 30 seconds.  This will loosen the caramel sauce.

    Flip the chocoflan onto a cake plate and serve.  This cake holds well in the frig for several days.  Although I guarantee it won’t last that long.  Happy Baking!

    Recipe compliments of Nelly Rodriguez de Galofre


    Brown Butter Thumbprint Cookies with Sweet Orange Marmalade

    Brown Butter Thumbprint Cookies with Sweet Orange Marmalade

    Finally.  Something “sweet” to post.  (besides cute pictures of Tank or my two sassy gals)

    I’m not much of a baker.  This is hard for me to admit.

    I typically leave the baking and pastry work to my dear friends and family members who wish to share their talents.

    And they do share, quite often actually.  I’m so lucky!

    Brown Butter Thumbprint Cookies on my Vintage Linen

    Baking and pastry work is more of an exact science than cooking.  I love experimenting with flavors and quantities… unfortunately to the point of  baking disaster.

    I need. to learn. to follow. the recipe.

    I love my vintage linen...

    This makes me sound as if I never follow the rules.  And yet, if you know me,  you know I’m a rule follower. (wink)  With an occasional whim for rebellion.

    In the case of these divine little cookies however, my whim for rebellion won!  I think my Brown Butter Thumbprint Cookies with Sweet Orange Marmalade turned out perfect.  Well, almost perfect.

    Perfect enough for the Bennett Crew to consume all 20 cookies within two days.

    This makes me smile.

    Brown Butter Thumbprint Cookies with Sweet Orange Marmalade

    These decadent little cookies are hefty on the butter.  It couldn’t be helped.  I would tell you to keep them healthy and sub with coconut oil.  Which is always my butter substitute. But alas, this won’t work. 🙁  So, if you are in need of a rich, decadent and divine little treat… this is for you.

    Makes about 20-24 cookies


    1 cup butter, sliced (2 sticks)

    ¾ cup sugar

    1 large egg

    1 teaspoon vanilla

    ½ teaspoon salt

    2  ½ cups all purpose flour

    ½ cup sweet orange marmalade


    To brown the butter:

    Heat a heavy bottom sauce pan over medium heat.  Add the butter to the pan and let it melt.

    Once melted, the butter will begin to get frothy.  Begin whisking the butter until brown flecks appear and the butter smells nutty.

    Take the brown butter off the heat and let the butter cool.  The butter will go from brown to burnt very quickly so be sure to watch the butter.  If needed, transfer the browned butter to a cool pan.

    To Make the cookies:

    Pre-heat the oven to 350F.

    Line a baking sheet with parchment.

    In a large electric mixer add the cooled brown butter and sugar.  Using the whisk attachment, whisk until the butter and sugar are thoroughly creamed together.  It should appear light and fluffy.

    Add the large egg and vanilla and whisk until nicely incorporated.

    Mix together the salt and flour and then add it to the brown butter mixture.  Mix together until the dough is thoroughly combined and pulling away from the sides of the mixing bowl.

    For the best looking cookie, place the dough in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

    Scoop tablespoon sized dough and roll into balls.  Place them on the parchment about 2 inches apart.

    Bake the cookies for 8 minutes and then take them out of the oven.  Make a thumbprint in the middle of each cookie and then place back into the oven for another 5-7 minutes, or until the cookie is done.  I like these cookies just golden in color around the edges.  If the edges are any darker the cookie will be crispier.

    Remove the cookies from the oven and transfer to a cooling rack.

    Fill each cookie with sweet orange marmalade and let them sit for about 10 minutes before serving.  Unless of course you just can’t resist a little taste test! J

    These cookies will keep for about 3-5 days.  But they never last that long in my house.