Summer Foraging Recipe: Elderberry-Blueberry Jam with Chia Seeds

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In the woodland valleys of Central California, Elderflower trees have been in bloom all spring with their prolific, lacy white blossoms.  I've enjoyed making Elderflower syrup, candied elderflowers and sweet Elderflower Tempura.  A few days ago, I noticed that some of the trees are starting to bear fruit -- diminutive, tart little berries, deep purplish-blue growing in heavy clusters.  

Inspired by a love of biscuits and jam, foraging, and adapted from a recipe from Simply Beyond Herbs, I whipped up a simple and delicious jam made from the foraged Elderberries, fresh blueberries and using chia seeds for a perfect jammy consistency.

Enjoy and Happy Foraging!
PrintWith ImageWithout Image Elderberry-Blueberry Chia JamYield: One half-pint jarAuthor: Jenn Erickson Prep time: 10 MCook time: 10 MTotal time: 20 M An easy and delicious sweet-tart jam to make from foraged Elderberries. Ingredients:1 1/2 cups elderberries, rinsedPinch of salt1 cup blueberries, rinsed2 Tablespoons Chia Seeds1/2 Tabl…

Snickerdoodle Doughnut Gems {Gluten-free, baked mini doughnuts}


The doughnut madness continues here at Rook No. 17.  I think perhaps I'm trying to live out a childhood fantasy of living in a doughnut shop.  Although it's hard to imagine anyone objecting too strenuously to a proliferation of doughnuts,  I'd like to assure you, gentle reader, that there are other creative projects in the works (that do not lead to a sugar coma).


In fact, this post was not originally on the editorial calendar.  Last night, the girls hit us up for a double-sleepover.  The giggles died down by around 2:00 a.m., and thankfully everyone slept in.  The sleepover zombies awoke with ravenous appetites, and much to my chagrin there was naught in the pantry but some baking essentials.  Feeling a surge of energy (or delirium brought on by lack of sleep), I decided to modify my Lemon Blueberry Sour Cream Baked Doughnuts to make cinnamon-sugar dusted mini doughnuts.  I used the gluten-free flour from Trader Joe's again, and the results were spectacular (as evidenced by the fact that not a single doughnut gem remains).


If the picture above looks a little different to you than the first two, it's because this is what the doughnuts look like when they are baked and rolled in cinnamon sugar while still warm.  After I made two dozen this way, my husband came in the kitchen, noticed a pan of oil I had on the stove, and said, "I wonder what would happen if we fried a few."  Healthy? No.  Delicious?  Yes.  The flash frying makes the light and cakey baked donut gems taste more like raised doughnuts.  

This photo shows what the doughnuts look like right out of the oven (left), and how they look after a few seconds in hot oil (right).

You can't go wrong either way!

Baked Snickerdoodle Doughnut Gems (Gluten-free)

yield:  36 mini doughnuts

  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar 
  • 1 cup sour cream (or nonfat real Greek Yogurt for added protein)
  • 2 Tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 Tablespoon oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups gluten free flour (I used Trader Joe's)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • Cinnamon sugar: (1/2 cup granulated sugar whisked with 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Generously coat a 12-cavity mini doughnut pan with nonstick spray

Step 1:  In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a balloon whisk, whip eggs and sugar on medium-high for 3 minutes till pale and fluffy.  Add sour cream and whisk to combine.

Step 2:  In a small bowl, melt butter.  Stir in oil and vanilla.  Add this mixture to the egg mixture and whisk to combine.

Step 3:  In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. 

Step 4:  Add dry mixture to the wet ingredients.  Wisk to combine. Let batter rest for 8 minutes.

Step 5:  Place the batter in a large squeeze bottle, pastry bag or plastic zip bag (with a 1/4" hole in the tip).  Pipe batter into the cavities of the doughnut pan (2/3 full). Do not overfill.

Step 6:  Bake doughnuts on middle rack of oven for 9 minutes.  Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan.  The doughnuts will be less delicate after they've cooled slightly. Re-grease pan and repeat with remaining batter (unless you're lucky enough to have more than one mini doughnut pan). 

  • For baked doughnuts:  Remove from pan and dredge each doughnut in the cinnamon sugar.  Place sugared doughnuts on wire rack to finish cooling.
  • For fried doughnuts:  Fry the baked doughnuts in 1" oil for just a few seconds per side.  Remove from oil and place on a wire cooling rack.  When cool enough to handle, dredge in the cinnamon sugar.

 Serve immediately.

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This post has been linked-up with:
Tickled Pink @ 504 Main 
The BFF Open House @ The Answer is Chocolate






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