|Gluten Free Chocolate Coconut Muffins
I am always on the lookout for new recipes, especially
those for people with special dietary needs. On the King
Arthur Flour website, I found a recipe for Chocolate Coconut Cake
made with coconut flour that sounded promising. In one of
the reviews for the recipe, someone shared that the recipe made 10
muffins. So, I decided to cut the recipe down to make just 2
muffins, one for me and one for Kim. Here is the pictorial
instructions to make 2 muffins, if you want to try it, too.
The only substitution I made to the original recipe was I
used brown sugar in place of regular sugar. These are not
sweet and the cocoa coconut combination is really nice.
However, next time I make them, I'm going to add some
Here are the ingredients you will need: coconut
flour, cocoa, baking powder, vanilla, sugar, 1 egg, butter, and
Sift 4 teaspoons, or 1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of coconut
with 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder. Set aside.
Place 4 teaspoons or 1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of
into a microwave-safe container with 1 Tablespoon of
Microwave for about 30 seconds, or until the butter is melted.
Add 1/8 cup or 2 Tablespoons of sugar (I used brown
and 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla
along with one egg to the butter cocoa mixture. Add a
pinch of salt, if you like.
Whisk to combine.
Add the dry ingredients to the mixture
and whisk to combine.
Evenly scoop into 2 paper lined muffin cups - place water in
empty cups to prevent hot spots.
Bake at 350 degrees
for about 20 minutes (check at 17 - 18 minutes)
Check with a toothpick for doneness - should come out
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 2 muffin cups with
- Sift together the coconut flour and baking powder,
mixing to combine; set aside.
- In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter with the
cocoa, stirring until well blended.
- Whisk the sugar, salt, vanilla, and egg into the
butter-cocoa mixture. Add the coconut flour and baking powder,
whisking until smooth.
- Divide the batter into the muffin cups. Let it rest for
- Bake the muffins until set, about 20 minutes, or until a
toothpick inserted into the middle comes out
- Allow to cool and enjoy!
Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn blog. Come
back and see us again, soon.
THINGS TO DO THIS FALL IN SUMTER COUNTY
As the temperatures drop to a more comfortable level and
the gnats disappear, it is time to enjoy a trip to Americus,
Andersonville, and Plains. There are a quite a few upcoming
events that may inspire you to come visit us.
Former President Jimmy Carter has been all over the news
due to his recent cancer diagnosis and treatment. As you may
or may not be aware, Mr. Carter has been, and plans to continue,
teaching an adult Bible Lesson at his church on the Sunday mornings
he is in town. The service is open to the public and all are
welcome to attend. His schedule is posted on the Maranatha Baptist Church
Sunday, Sept 6 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday
School at 10 am.
Sumter Players will be performing "The Andersonville
Trial" Thursday, Sept. 10 through Sunday, Sept. 13 at the Rylander Theatre.
Tickets are $10 - $15.
Sunday, Sept 13 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday
School at 10 am.
‘The Ride Home’ which pays tribute to former U.S. POWs
and the families of MIAs will be Sept. 16-20. See the
Americus Times Recorder
The Manhattan Dolls will be performing music
USO style from boogie-woogie to the blues
Taste of Sumter will be held on Thursday, Sept 24 in our
beautiful historic downtown.
Plains Peanut Festival, honoring Plains, Peanuts and a
President will be Saturday, Sept 26 in downtown Plains.
Events include a parade, book signing, train ride and a
street dance. Visit the Plains Georgia website for more
Sunday, Sept 27 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach
Sunday School at 10 am.
Sunday, Oct 4 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday
School at 10 am.
The Broadway Boys, a group of 6 Broadway performers,
will be performing the music of Broadway on Friday Oct 16, 2015 at
Theatre. Tickets are $29.
Sunday, Oct 18 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday
School at 10 am.
Sunday, Oct 25 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday
School at 10 am.
Although some of these events are subject to change,
maybe you should just come to Americus to enjoy some peace and
quiet, along with some Southern hospitality. We'd love to see
Today, there are so many people on gluten free diets.
For those who can enjoy oats, here is a recipe that uses
exclusively oats. No wheat, corn, rice or other flour is
used. The recipe makes 8 muffins and can be doubled.
Here are the ingredients you'll need (the chocolate chips are
optional). I did not have "gluten free" oats, but, no one had
Celiac disease when I experimented and regular oats were okay to
You could simply put all the ingredients into the food
processor and blend at one time. But, I chose to use my
immersion blender and the chopping attachment for this small batch
recipe. I measured the oats into the chopping cup.
Added the sugar.
Baking powder was next.
Cinnamon was last.
All the dry ingredients are in the chopping
I blended until it looked about right.
This looked perfect, to me.
Now for the wet ingredients. I broke a banana into
pieces into the immersion blender cup along with one egg.
Added Greek yogurt
and some vanilla extract.
Everything is ready to be blended.
Immersion blender was perfect for this task.
Looks perfectly blended.
The oven was preheated to 400 degrees.
Combine the dry ingredients with the wet.
Blend with the immersion blender.
Here is the volume of batter once everything is mixed
This recipe makes 8 muffins. I've made it twice.
You can either use foil liners or you can spray the muffin
tins with non-stick spray. However, if you use the chocolate
chips for garnish, as I did, if you do not use the foil liners, the
chips sink into the batter. They stayed on top using the
1/4 cup of batter per muffin.
I carefully placed 6 chocolate chips on top of each muffin and
filled the empty muffin cups 1/4 full of water.
The timer was set for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes, they were not quite done. I gave them
another 3 minutes,
Looks like 8 beautiful muffins to me.
A closer look
I allowed them to cool for about 10 minutes before serving
them. Everyone liked them!
Gluten Free Oatmeal Banana Muffins (wheat free, flour
1 ¼ cups old fashioned oats (gluten free, if needed)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
¾ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 large egg
1 large ripe banana
½ cup plain Greek yogurt
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
48 chocolate chips (optional)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line 8 muffin cups with foil liners or spray with
non-stick cooking spray.
Measure dry ingredients into food processor or
chopping bowl of food processor. Blend or chop until oats are
Blend egg, banana, Greek yogurt and vanilla extract
together with immersion blender.
Add dry ingredients to banana mixture and blend until
Divide batter into prepared muffin cups.
Garnish with chocolate chips, if using.
Bake at 400°F for 15 - 20 minutes, or until a
toothpick comes out clean.
NOTE: You can simply put all ingredients (not the chocolate
chips) into a food processor to blend. I was experimenting
and wanted to how the ingredients looked at each step.
Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn blog. Let me
know if you what you think of this recipe. Hope you and your
family enjoy it as much as we do.
April has been a crazy, busy month for us. I'm not
complaining. I'm merely stating a fact. No daytripping
for us. But, I did try a new recipe that I'd like to share
Have you ever bought a watermelon and after eating it
for a few days you wonder what to do with the rest of the melon?
Well, here's an idea - chilled watermelon soup. When I
made it, Kim and I both said the same thing on the first taste.
It is incredibly simple to make. Cut up some
watermelon and put it in the blender with some honey, ginger, fresh
mint, fresh lime juice and apple juice. Blend for just a
second or two. Let the flavors meld for a little while in the
fridge. Serve plain or with a dollop of yogurt. I chose
to pipe the yogurt into a heart shape and added a strawberry and
fresh mint leaf for garnish.
Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn Bed and
Breakfast blog. We hope you'll come stay with us,
Chilled Watermelon Soup (from Southern Living July
The recipe says it yields 4 cups of soup - when I made
it, it came out to 3 cups of soup)
- 4 cups seeded watermelon cubes
- 1/3 cup apple juice
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint
- 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon honey (optional)
- 1/3 cup plain nonfat yogurt
Process first 5 ingredients and honey, if desired, in a
blender or food processor until smooth, stopping to scrape down
sides. Cover and chill 1 hour. Serve in individual bowls with a
dollop of yogurt.
What a wonderful way to spend a beautiful Spring day - a visit
to Massee Lane Gardens, Home of the American Camellia Society in
nearby Fort Valley. Less than an hour away from Americus,
there is always something blooming at Massee Lane Gardens.
When we visited, the peach trees were in bloom on the way to
Peach blossoms look very similar to the plum blossoms in our
The camellias were in full bloom. Please click the
photos to see them full size as a slide show.
In the Japanese garden, there is a beautiful, relaxing koi
Beauty is everywhere.
The daffodils were also in bloom.
I was amazed at the variety of camellias.
We took a stroll around the large pond
and saw some frogs.
There are many varieties of flowering trees and shrubs, as you
There are quite a few different gardens to explore.
This sculpture reminded me of my Dad.
With all the camellias in bloom, I almost missed the
I love the variegated camellias.
Another interesting sculpture in one of the gardens.
I love the way this photo came out. It truly conveys the
feeling you have as you wander.
There are so many red and pink varieties, the white ones
really stand out.
I love snowdrops.
We wandered the gardens so long that we only had a couple of
minutes to explore the porcelain collection. It gives us a
great excuse to visit again, soon.
Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn blog. We
hope you'll come visit us in person and enjoy all the wonderful
opportunities our area has to offer.
A Beautiful February Stroll in Americus Georgia
I decided to take a short walk to see what was blooming in our
neighborhood. As I entered Oak Grove Cemetery, which is just
1/4 mile from our door, I realized I had hit the jackpot.
Please click on the photos and enjoy the scenery.
Thank you for joining me on this virtual floral tour.
It's even better in person. We'd love to see you, so,
come visit us at Americus Garden Inn Bed & Breakfast.
To start off the New Year, we decided to take a daytrip
to Providence Canyon State Park in Lumpkin, Georgia, just 45
minutes from Americus. We arrived in the early afternoon and
took the 3 mile hike. This is the perfect time of year to
enjoy the Little Grand Canyon of Georgia. The temperatures
are comfortable for hiking, there are no bugs and with the leaves
off the trees, the views of the canyon are
As you drive along the road to the interpretive center,
the overlooks give you a glimpse of the grandeur below. I had
no idea that Providence Canyon is considered one of the 7 Natural
Wonders of Georgia. Although the canyons were mentioned as
early as 1836, poor farming practices in the 19th century lead to
erosion causing the deep gullies.
Please click on the photos to see them full screen as a
slide show to really enjoy the vistas.
As you can see, the canyon floor had some water flowing,
but, it was easy to cross without too much clay getting into our
We had been told about the abandoned cars at
Providence Canyon, but, we were still a little surprised when we
saw them. It just seems odd to see them against the backdrop
of such incredible natural beauty.
So, the next time you come this way, plan some time to
make a day trip to Lumpkin to visit Providence Canyon State Park.
Remember to bring your hiking shoes or boots. There
really is plenty to see and do in SouthWest Georgia any time of
Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn Bed & Breakfast
Keep in touch with us through facebook. We'd love to hear from you.
Instead of cookies for Santa, how about chocolate mousse?
This one is dairy, egg and gluten free. And, most
importantly, it is delicious!
It only takes 2 ingredients and about 5 minutes (not counting
chilling time in the fridge).
You need 6 ounces of almond milk (I used the protein + fiber)
and 1 cup of bittersweet chocolate chips.
Place the chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and
microwave for 1 minute.
They will be slightly melted, but, look like this.
A quick stir to distribute the heat and they go back in the
Microwave for another 45 - 55 seconds and they look like
Stir for at least a minute and they will all be melted.
Add about half of the almond milk and stir.
It should look like this.
Add the rest of the almond milk and stir.
It will look like this.
Place some ice in a bowl (I used a pie pan) that the bowl of
chocolate will fit into.
Place the bowl of chocolate on top of the bowl of ice.
Using a hand mixer, blend the chocolate almond milk mixture
for about 5 minutes or until it is smooth and creamy.
It will look like this.
Using a spatula, stir the mousse scraping down the sides and
bottom of the bowl.
Scoop into dishes (or not). It should make 4 small
portions, but, I scooped it into 3 larger portions.
Doesn't this look amazingly delicious?
Now, go try this for yourself. Or, make it for Santa!
It's a great holiday treat that almost everyone can enjoy
because there is no gluten, no dairy and no eggs!
2 Ingredient Chocolate Mousse
6 oz almond milk
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
- Place chips in microwaveable bowl and microwave for 1 minute.
Stir. Return bowl to microwave for 45 - 55 seconds.
Remove and stir until totally melted.
- Add some of the almond milk to the chocolate and stir
completely. Add the rest of the almond milk and stir until
- Prepare a larger bowl with a layer of ice. Place
chocolate almond milk bowl on top of ice.
- Using a hand mixer, blend the chocolate almond milk mixture
until it thickens to mousse consistency - 3 to 5 minutes.
Stir with a spatula scraping down sides and bottom of
- Spoon into dishes (or leave in bowl) and allow to chill for
about 2 hours.
Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn Bed and Breakfast
blog. We wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and
a happy and healthy New Year!
Last week, we decided to take a daytrip to The Animal Park at
in Albany, Georgia, just 45 minutes from Americus.
We spent about 2 1/2 hours at the zoo and could easily have
spent the entire day, if we had visited when the Wiregrass Express
Train was running or the African Veldt Safari was operating (March
It was a very chilly day, but, the sun was shining.
We started our tour looking at the reptiles (all behind
glass). If you don't like snakes, scroll down a little!
This is a Burmese python named Nochaway.
This is a canebrake timber rattlesnake.
Check out this albino boxer turtle and a broad-headed
This is a green tree python.
This is a gray-banded kingsnake.
This is a pancake tortoise.
This little one was not marked, so, I have no idea what it
While we were there, they were feeding these frogs live
There are two snakes in this photo -
It finally warmed up a little and we headed towards the actual
zoo area and met this peacock.
The meerkats are absolutely adorable.
However, the peacock was very aggressive towards the meerkats
(in their enclosure which the peacock could easily enter and exit)
and we wished we could have intervened as we watched the peacock
We felt like this little guy was saying, "Somebody, please
Muckalee Swampland Station - looks like pea soup
Look a little closer and you see the alligators.
During "season" they feed the 'gators, but, not this time of
There were bald eagles.
This bobcat just looks like a really big housecat as it was
grooming itself in the sun.
The cheetahs were also soaking up the sun.
Then, there were the lemurs.
All of a sudden, it seemed, they appeared.
We watched as this brown one groomed the other one. They
are so cute!
Another lemur, sleeping.
The petting zoo animals were funny to watch. The pig
would grab some hay and then take it into the building you see.
The goat was just eating...
There was a Southern black rhinoceros.
It really was a gorgeous day.
The colobus monkeys were fascinating to watch.
Unfortunately for me, this is when my camera started to
This is Bogart, the bactrian camel.
Isn't he a handsome guy?
Did you know that red wolves were considered "extinct" in the
wild in 1980 by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service?
What I found fascinating is that although there have been
efforts to restore populations of red wolves to their native
habitat, interbreeding with coyotes has been recognized as "the
most significant and detrimental threat" to the wolves in North
Carolina. (according to the Chehaw website.
And, lastly, my favorite, the serval.
How can you not just love that face!
So, the next time you come this way, plan some time to make a
day trip to Albany to visit the Chehaw Wild Animal Park. If
you bring your bicycle, Chehaw has miles of groomed bike trails
throughout the park. They also have a BMX bicycle racing
track. There really is plenty to see and do in SouthWest
Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn Bed &
Keep in touch with us through facebook
. We'd love to hear from you.
With the holidays approaching, I thought
it might be a good time to remind you of a favorite recipe that I
shared four years ago - gluten free cheese muffins. They
taste like the cheddar cheese biscuits you get at Red Lobster, but,
since they are made with rice flour, those of us with gluten
intolerance can enjoy them. For those of you who can have
regular flour, you can use all purpose flour in place of the rice
flour. These are really wonderful right out of the oven or,
if you have leftovers, heated up for 5 minutes in a hot oven
(so the outside gets a little crusty). I've made these for
guests several times recently and everyone loves them.
I start with Bob's Red Mill Organic rice
Mix in some baking powder, salt and sugar. The original recipe
called for cayenne pepper. I use chipotle chili pepper.
In another bowl, place one egg and 1 cup of milk.
Whisk those together.
You can use any cheese, but, I prefer shredded sharp
Place the cheese in the bowl with the dry ingredients
and mix thoroughly.
Grease the pans with butter, shortening or spray them with PAM.
This recipe makes either 6 jumbo muffins or 12 standard
Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients.
Stir until combined.
Spoon the batter evenly into the muffin cups.
Bake at 425 degrees for about 15 minutes or until golden.
Let them cool a few minutes before removing from the pan.
If you like cheese biscuits, you will love these muffins. I
like to reheat them in the oven so the outside gets nice and crusty
and the inside is soft and cheesy. YUMMY!
GLUTEN FREE CHEESE MUFFIN
1 1/2 cups rice flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 TBS sugar
1/2 tsp chipotle chili pepper (if you use
cayenne instead, use much less!)
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar
1 cup milk
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Combine dry ingredients in a large
Combine egg and milk in small bowl. Whisk
Grease a 6 cup jumbo muffin pan or 12 cup
regular muffin pan.
Add cheese to dry ingredients mixing
Add egg/milk mixture to cheese/flour and
Spoon evenly into prepared muffin
Bake 15 minutes for jumbo, 12 minutes for
regular or until golden brown.
Let cool in pan for about 5 minutes. Remove
from pan to cooling rack.
Thank you for your virtual visit to the Americus Garden
Inn Bed & Breakfast. We look forward to hosting your
visit to our area in the near future.