Friday, July 5, 2013

Gluten free 4th of July birthday party!

My youngest son was born on the 4th of July, 14 years ago (1999). Every year we have a big family celebration.

This was the first year that  I was gluten free. I totally could have made desserts that had gluten, but my son is very thoughtful & wanted things GF so I could eat whatever I wanted. 

Red, White & Blue Deviled Eggs

We did some fun stuff this year. I made red, white & blue deviled eggs. Make hard boiled eggs the normal way. For best results peeling, buy your eggs 1 week before you boil them. Also add white vinegar to the water. 

After you peel the eggs, cut them in half lengthwise. Pop out the yolk into a bowl. Put food coloring in 1 cup of water. I used half a bottle of red coloring & a few squirts of blue. Place 1 half of egg whites in the dye. I know it is tempting to put in more than one, but if you do, they won't dye evenly. I only dyed the blue eggs for about 2 minutes & the red for 5. Don't forget to leave some white eggs!! Lay dyed eggs on paper towels, yolk side down to dry. Do not rub or pat dry. 

After they are dried, fill as normal. I took the time to use a pastry bag to make them pretty-ish!!

American Flag Chocolate Chip Cookie

Next we made a yummy flag cookie! I used Bob's Red Mill GF chocolate chip cookie mix. The mix ends up crumbly, which worked out well to form it into a rectangle on a cookie sheet. I didn't want to bake it all the way to the edge of the cookie sheet, because I thought it would be difficult to get out.

Bake it for 20-25 minutes at 350º

After cooled completely, the birthday boy & my older son's girlfriend set to decorating it. 

They frosted it with GF whipped cream cheese frosting. We had found bags of red, white & blue M&Ms. Buy 2 bags, because there weren't as many white ones!! 

It was very very tasty too! I may or may not have had a piece with breakfast the next day. 

GF Firecracker Cake Batter Cookies

Then I set about making "firecracker" cookies. Put GF vanilla cake mix into bowl, add 3 beaten eggs and 1/2 cup oil. (I used safflower) Blend with hand blender. Mixture will be thick. I added red, blue & silver sprinkles. On 1/2 the cookies I placed a few red & blue M&Ms leftover from previous project on top before baking. Use a tablespoon to drop dough on a oiled cookies sheet. They spread out a lot, so space them out. Bake at 350º for 10 minutes. Remove from cookie sheet right away. I found if I let them cool, they were hard to remove from the cookie sheet. 

Watermelon 4th of July Birthday Cake

My next project was a birthday cake. Isn't it beautiful??

This cake has a bit of a secret. It's a watermelon cake. No, not a watermelon flavored cake, it is actually a watermelon!

I had so much going on, I didn't have time to take photos of my steps. Next time I make this, I will update with photos. 

You will need:
1 seedless watermelon
2 bags flaked coconut
Fresh berries
Whipped cream topping
Food coloring 

1) Place 1 cup (each) flaked coconut into two zip sandwich bags. Fill shot glass (2 ounces) with water & add food coloring. I added about 1/2 a bottle of red & 1/4 of blue. A little bit at a time, pour the red food coloring into 1 of the bags, shaking & mixing as you go. Repeat with the blue. Zip the bags and shake to mix it completely. 

2) Cut the watermelon into cake shape. Cut ends off watermelon. Take a long, sharp knife & carefully cut the red part of the watermelon into a round shape, cutting off the rind. Our round "cake" was very tall, so we cut it in half & made 2 cakes. Take a knife and carefully trim up the melon to look nice and even. 

3) Let melon sit for 30 minutes so it is less juicy. Then pat dry with paper towels. Don't skip this step. It's tough to get wet whip cream to stick to wet melon! 

4) You will need your whipped cream soft. I put it on the counter for about an hour to thaw. Use a rubber spatula to cover the cake with whip cream. You will more pat it on than spread it on. I put it on fairly thick.

5) Mix together red, white & blue coconut. Using small handfuls, press coconut into sides of cake. 

6) Decorate top of cake with berries. We used strawberries & blueberries. Sprinkle with a little coconut on top. Either serve right away, or refrigerate.

We made a lot of BBQ style food. Homemade potato salad, coleslaw, burgers, sausage dogs, fruit platters. I got buns for everyone else, but I lettuce wrapped my burger. The dark lettuce holds my guacamole bacon cheeseburger. Yum!

The birthday boy helped out making a fruit platter and these fruit kabobs!

Happy happy 14th birthday Nolan! I hope you had a great day!!

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