• I’m so excited to share a recipe from Elana Amsterdam (from Elana’s Pantry fame) who just came out with a new gluten free cupcake cookbook with recipes that are out-of-the-ballpark homeruns, and the fact that the recipes contain wholesome ingredients that you can pronounce is a plus in my “let’s eat real food” book (I was already moving in that direction, but I have to thank Diane from The WHOLE Gang and Shirley from Gluten Free Easily for raising my awareness to a new level) . There is no doubt in my gluten free diva mind that whenever I need a gluten free cupcake recipe, Elana’s new cookbook is the one I will make a beeline for. Gluten Free Cupcakes by Elana Amsterdam “Reprinted with permission from Gluten-Free Cupcakes: 50 Irresistible Recipes Made with Almond and Coconut Flour. Copyright © 2011 by Elana Amsterdam, Celestial Arts, an imprint of Ten Speed Press, a division of the Crown Publishing Group, Berkeley, CA. Photo Credit: Annabelle Breakey.” Two of the reasons that Elana’s recipes have so much going for them are that they are easy and delicious. I mean, take a look at the ingredient list for the Marble Cupcakes (scroll down). Five, count ‘em, five ingredients for the vanilla batter, and six ingredients for the chocolate batter! Unheard of. Amazing! I’ve had immediate success with everything I’ve made from Elana’s first cookbook (The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook), so I have every reason to believe that the second one will be just as wonderful. Gotta whip up a quick batch of gluten free cupcakes for a class party or a bake sale or a birthday party? Elana’s recipes (and I’ve now made a good number of them) will have people swooning. I’ve seen it firsthand. It’s actually kind of funny. I mean, when I serve homemade gluten free goodies, the usual response is “These are gluten free? You have to be kidding”. Do you know why people react like that? I do. It’s because most of the gluten free baked goods that are available commercially have given gluten free a bad name. But then along comes Mary (name that tune, if you dare). Oops. I mean Elana and she helps to restore gluten free’s tarnished reputation. With panache and taste that could light up Fenway Park (name the city, if you dare). I’m just saying, if you don’t want to miss this train, run like an Easter bunny, go immediately to amazon.com and order Gluten-Free Cupcakes: 50 Irresistible Recipes Made with Almond and Coconut Flour. When I saw the price, I was stunned. Right now, it’s on sale for $9.03. Can you even believe it? I just ordered 5 of them, cause I know the price is gonna go up and I know at least five people who I’m buying it for, friends and family who love to bake, gluten free or not. And because I ordered over $25 worth of product, shipping is free. Can’t beat the deal! I’ve wanted an excuse to buy one of those adorable cupcake holders. And then it hit me today! My daughter’s bridal shower is next month. The strawberry cupcakes on page 24 of Elana’s book are going to take center stage and they will adorn my dessert table. Here’s a picture, from the book, of the Strawberry Cupcakes followed by the recipe. I only hope mine look half as good! Strawberry Cupcakes Makes 8 Sweetness: Medium 1/2 cup coconut flour 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder 1/4 teaspoon sea salt 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 4 large eggs 1/2 cup agave nectar 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh strawberries Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 8 muffin cups with paper liners. In a large bowl, combine the coconut flour, arrowroot powder, salt, and baking soda. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, agave nectar, and vanilla extract. Blend the wet ingredients into the coconut flour mixture with a handheld mixer until thoroughly combined, then fold in the strawberries. Scoop 1/4 cup of batter into each prepared muffin cup. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached. Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for 1 hour, then frost and serve. Strawberry Meringue Frosting MAKES 3 CUPS SWEETNESS: HIGH My younger son eats this straight out of the bowl! 1/4 cup agave nectar 2 egg whites 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh strawberries In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring the agave nectar to a boil, stirring constantly. Decrease the heat to low and simmer for 6 to 10 minutes, watching constantly and stirring occasionally, until the agave nectar darkens slightly from its original amber color, then remove from the heat and set aside. In a deep bowl, whip the egg whites to stiff peaks using a handheld mixer. Be sure to push the beaters around the bowl to incorporate air into the whites. This step is important; if your egg whites are not whipped to stiff peaks, the recipe won’t work. Stop whipping as soon as the egg whites are stiff; overwhipping will result in egg whites that are dry and grainy. The foam of the whites will be stiff enough to stand up in well-defined, unwavering peaks. Drizzle the warm agave nectar very slowly into the egg whites, while whipping with a handheld mixer, to keep the peaks stiff. The meringue will become pearlescent and shiny. Allow to cool to room temperature, then fold the strawberries into the meringue. Use right away. So, let the drooling begin. Elana’s Marble Cupcakes with Vegan Chocolate Icing (it contains no animal products) are delicious. And at the risk of repeating myself, I couldn’t believe how easy they were to make. Gluten Free Marble Cupcake 2 Marble Cupcakes Makes 8 Sweetness: Medium Vanilla Batter 1/4 cup coconut flour 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 2 large eggs 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil 1/3 cup agave nectar Chocolate Batter 2 tablespoons coconut flour 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 2 large eggs 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil 1/4 cup agave nectar Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 8 muffin cups with paper liners. To make the vanilla batter, in a large bowl, combine the coconut flour and baking soda. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, grapeseed oil, and agave nectar. Stir the wet ingredients into the coconut flour mixture with a large spoon until thoroughly combined. To make the chocolate batter, in a large bowl, combine the coconut flour, cocoa powder, and baking soda. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, grapeseed oil, and agave nectar. Stir the wet ingredients into the coconut flour mixture with a large spoon until thoroughly combined. Fill each prepared muffin cup with 4 tablespoons of batter, alternating tablespoons of chocolate and vanilla, starting with chocolate batter and ending with vanilla. Use a toothpick to swirl the batter in figure eights. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached. Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for 1 hour, then frost and serve. Vegan Chocolate Frosting MAKES 1 1/4 CUPS SWEETNESS: HIGH Who would guess that this super-rich and thick chocolate frosting is vegan? Frost over everything, or simply eat it with a spoon, like I do. 6 ounces dark chocolate chips (73% cacao) (about 1 heaping cup) 1/2 cup Spectrum all-vegetable shortening 1/4 cup agave nectar 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 2 tablespoons water Pinch of sea salt In a medium saucepan over very low heat, melt the chocolate until smooth. Allow the pan to stand on the counter for 5 to 10 minutes to cool the chocolate to room temperature. Blend in the shortening with a handheld mixer, then blend in the agave nectar, vanilla extract, water, and salt until smooth. Place the saucepan in the refrigerator for 3 to 8 minutes, until the frosting becomes spreadable. If the frosting becomes too stiff to work with, reheat the pan ever so briefly over very low heat and stir until the frosting is softened. If the frosting is too runny, place it back in the refrigerator until it firms up. Use immediately or store in a glass Mason jar in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Happy Gluten Free Cupcake Baking! Before you go, take a look at these two pictures. The first one is a picture of the Marble Cupcakes from Elana’s cookbook. The second one is my version of the Marble Cupcakes – they’re even delicious without icing! Gluten Free Marble Cupcakes by Elana Amsterdam
    • http://glutenfreeeasily.com Shirley @ gfe

      You went for the frosted version! Looking at yours, I can see why. ;-) Great job, Ellen! Thanks so much for the mention, too. It's so easy to make wonderful homemade gluten-free treats when we have Elana and her cupcake cookbook! :-) And won't that bridal shower be incredible with her strawberry cupcakes–so very lovely and a propos for a bridal shower for sure.

      Shirley

      • Gluten Free Diva

        Shirley – how fun that we both made the Marble Cupcakes! It's amazing how moist they are, isn't it? I love your post as well! So cool how the eggs made your vanilla batter so yellow. Gotta wonder about factory farmed eggs, huh?! Anyway, thank you girlfriend for stopping by and saying hey!

    • http://www.citylifeeats.com Valerie@CityLifeEats

      You and Shirley convinced me. I need this book :)

      • Gluten Free Diva

        Go for it Valerie!

    • http://www.alisacooks.com Alisa Fleming

      Wow, you did an awesome job Ellen! I can't believe you bought five more! But really, what an awesome gift and so cheap. Hmm, now you've got me thinking who I can give this too :)

      • Gluten Free Diva

        At $9.03, it's an unbeatable price. And I'm always looking for gifts. I think it's an ideal gift for everyone, GF or not! Plus Christmas and Hanukah are coming:).

    • http://cookitallergyfree.com/blog Kim-Cook It AF

      Ellen, what a great review of Elana's book! And your cupcakes look amazing! I think the strawberry ones would be absolutely PERFECT for the shower!!!
      xo
      K

      • Gluten Free Diva

        Thank you Kim!!! Yes, my daughter has approved the strawberry cupcakes for her bridal shower. I think they'll be fab, thanks to Elana! Her new cupcake cookbook is just amazing, isn't it?

    • http://kaellasglutenfreeguide.blogspot.com/ Kaella

      Ellen,
      I love your post and followed the Marble cupcake recipe to make mini cupcakes last night. My husband was ready to lick the frosting bowl clean, but I managed to save some for the cupcakes. I brought our leftovers into work and (you were right) they were a big hit with my gluten-FULL colleagues! No one could even tell the difference. In fact, some like them better than typical cupcakes. Thanks!

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    • Canadian Girl

      I have always loved your site and visit frequently. Question…there is no fat (yeah!) in the strawberry cupcakes????? Do they still stay tender???
      Love the new look of your site, keep the ideas coming. I tell anyone with GF questions to visit this site, awesome recipes and info especially for those new to the GF diet. You make it look easy.
      Deborah from up in Canada

    • http://www.runthirteenpointone.blogspot.com Renae

      I have her first cookbook and have had no success with the recipes because I'm using Bob's Red Mill almond flour…apparently you can't use his? Haven't been able to find any other almond flour.
      For the cupcakes, do you know if there is a certain kind of coconut flour I should look for? I'd love to try these – they look so good!! Thanks!

      • smilingldsgirl

        She recommends using Honeyville Farm almond flour. They actually have a better price online then anywhere else I have seen locally- even less than at Whole Foods.
        http://store.honeyvillegrain.com/blanchedalmondfl

        I've also loved every recipe I've tried of Elana's. I made the strawberry cupcakes today and by themselves they would have been a little strange tasting but I put the cream cheese frosting and holy cow! Wow. So good. I'm diabetic so it is a special treat to have a dessert.
        I am not gluten intolerant but I have to keep my white carbs and sugars down. Elana's recipes fit perfectly. I also admire the way she has not let her condition (celiac disease) stop her in any way. If she wants wheat thins or cheeze its she figures out a way. I admire that attitude.

        • Gluten Free Diva

          I agree with you wholeheartedly. About Honeyville's Almond Flour AND about Elana's recipes. She is the go to for any GF recipe using almond flour!

    • http://www.injust10pages.com/blog/glunten_intolerance_blog/ Gluten Intolerance

      Oh try putting some colored sprinkles on it to make it more attractive to children; I would say that the chocolate toppings looks sugary and it looks like you are a gluten free cupcake maker.

    • http://naturopathicgourmet.blogspot.com/2011/02/dreamy-dark-chocolate-mi-cuits.html Dr. Sarah Cimperman

      If you like cupcakes, you'll love "Mi-Cuits." They are cupcake-size and have a warm, soft center.

    • http://bestofthislife.blogspot.com/ Emily

      Oh I have to try these out! Looks so good!

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    • Andrea

      Are the chocolate batter ingredients correct? 2tbsp coconut flour and 2tbsp cocoa powder are all the dry ingredients?

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