The Country Wife Recommends…Holiday Baking Essentials {Ingredients}

The Country Wife Recommends...Holiday Baking Essentials {Ingredients}

All right, last week was my top 10 absolute, must-have holiday baking tools. This week, we are talking top 10 favorite ingredients in my holiday baking pantry.

I’m not a foodie expert. I haven’t produced a cookbook, and I certainly don’t star in my very own Food Network show.

But I do love to bake.

So while I may not own a bakery or have any chops, so to speak, in the pastry-world, I do have my own personal favorites when it comes to baking. And I can tell you I’m not endorsed by any of the companies whose products I’m sharing with you on the blog. This is just me, in real life, sharing my favorite things with you.

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The Country Wife Recommends…Holiday Baking Essentials {Tools}

The Country Wife Recommends...Holiday Baking Essentials {Tools}

The last time I did a “Country Wife Recommends…” post here on Country Wife Chronicles, I was sharing my very favorite Christian marriage resources with you.

This time, we are taking a bit of a change in direction. Today, we are talking all things holiday baking.

Tis that time of year where you take stock of your pantry and start preparing treats and goodies for the masses. You might be planning your Thanksgiving feast or what dessert you want to bring to the family gathering. Maybe you are starting to think ahead to Christmas and wanting to have everything on hand to make treats for neighbors and friends.

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Gluten-Free Nectarine Galette

nectarine galette at Country Wife Chronicles

Ellie over at Ellie Eats made her way into the Paleoshere a few years ago. She’s a bright young lady, one I’m privileged to say I’m related to, with a knack for coming up with healthy creations in the kitchen. So, when I decided I wanted to explore the Paleo world a bit, I searched her blog for recipes to incorporate into our weekly meal plan.

This is my take on her Pear Galette recipe, but I swapped out the pears for some fresh, in-season nectarines. And I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised with this one—especially for a Paleo recipe.

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Gluten-Free Flour Blends

GF Flour Blends at Country Wife Chronicles

In an attempt to try out some gluten-free (GF) baking recipes, I’ve been exploring GF flour blends. Ok, if I’m being honest, after reading a bit about some digestive issues I was suffering from I decided that maybe gluten was having an impact on my intestinal tract. So, in a confident, “I’m going to get healthy” moment I splurged and bought a gigantic bag of coconut flour from Sam’s Club…thinking it would work for a straight up 1-to-1 switch out for all-purpose flour. No, nope, not really. Unless you are going for super-flat and sawdust grit in your recipes. Just sayin’.

Needless to say this massive fail on my part definitely got me thinking that maybe eating healthy sweets just isn’t meant to taste good. So I shoved the coconut flour to the back of my cabinet after a few disappointing recipe attempts and went back to my usual ingredients.

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Indoor S’mores Casserole

S'mores Casserole by Country Wife Chronicles

I heart s’mores. I mean really, truly, love the yummy combination of chocolate, mallow, and graham. My mouth is watering just thinking about the flavors (insert long, satisfying sigh here).

S’mores have been a summertime favorite for us on the fire pit, as I’m sure most of you might also agree. But what about the other seasons of the year? Why should we forget about these delectable treats in the cold and frosty days of winter?

The answer: we don’t have to. S’mores Casserole—made right in your oven. Now you can add some warmth to your kitchen with a hot oven and send the tantalizing smell of s’mores throughout the house! What a perfect pairing with hot cocoa on a cold afternoon! (Are you convinced to go try this recipe yet?)

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Pecan Caramel Popcorn

Pecan Caramel Popcorn, Country Wife Chronicles

Those that know me well; know that I have a slight obsession with Christmas. I relish this season of hope, peace, and love. I love the warm and cozy smells of the holidays, the crackling fireplaces, the fresh-fallen blanket of snow…these things awaken my senses and nourish my soul.

I bust out all my favorite Christmas movies, put my Christmas playlists on a constant repeat cycle, and I spend a whole lotta time in the kitchen. I love to bake, and the holidays, for me, just equate baking love.

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