baking gluten-free holidays recipe sweets

It’s That Time (+ Flourless Chocolate Cream Pie)

14 December 2012

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I’ll be honest: I’m having the tiniest bit of trouble wrapping my mind around the holidays this year. Thanksgiving came and went in a blur of sun and warm weather which is perhaps what’s doing it: last weekend I sat in Alamo Square Park with a smoothie and bare arms and the day before we walked along Crissy Field in the blazing sun (where I took that photo above). This is decidedly not wintry holiday weather, and makes me feel all turned around. Today at least is chilly and grey and while I miss the sun it feels more like what I’d expect this time of year to feel like. Holidayish. You know?

Still: here we are in the middle of December. We will pick up our wee tree tonight from a friend who cut it for us from his property in the Sierras. I will make hot chocolate and we’ll munch cookies and string sparkly lights and put on ornaments. Tomorrow is our holiday party and I have a day of baking ahead of me – one of the best kinds of days – just as soon as I get a cup of coffee and a few more supplies. Next week I’ll do a bit more baking and send out the holiday packages, Kurt and Emily arrive on Saturday, we go to Sebastopol soon after and whoooosh. January 1 will be here before I know it. As this is my last holiday season in California for awhile – sob! – I am trying to savor the moments even as they pass me by ever so quickly.

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I was going to make a chocolate cream pie as part of my ‘sweets buffet’ that will be on the table tomorrow, but I’ve decided to go with mini Guinness chocolate cake cupcakes with salted caramel buttercream instead – I want things that are bite-sized and easy to consume. Not that this pie isn’t easy to consume – it is, actually, and quite dangerously so.

I have been making a version of this for years, often around the holidays. As I’ve been consumed with all things flourless of late, I adapted it for an NPR article that probably will run next week; I wanted to share it here now, because it’s that time year: to make decadent sweets, to celebrate together, to gather ’round, hopefully with pie. I’m planning to make it again either for Christmas dinner or for the eve; it’s the kind of thing that will appeal to gluten-free folk, of course, but I’d argue the rest of us will devour it just as happily.

In the meantime, I have smoked salmon to procure from my beloved farmers’ market, a lemon cake to put in the oven, countless cups of tea to drink to keep me warm on this December day. Hope your holiday season is treating you just fine so far, and here’s to the happiest of happy days ahead.

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  • Pam 14 December 2012 at 7:21 pm

    The first sentence of this post describes my holiday mind-set as well. I couldn’t really articulate this feeling that I seem to have. But once again, you said it and said it well! I am cheered and a bit motivated thanks to you. Would love to be at your party tomorrow!

  • Anne Zimmerman 14 December 2012 at 4:14 pm

    Clearly I should not put another thing in my mouth till tomorrow. I cannot wait!