Recipe: Paleo Cherry Cobbler Bars

Paleo Cherry Cobbler Bars | Freckled Italian

It's cherry season and Memorial Day Weekend is upon us, so I thought I'd spend some time in the kitchen this week coming up with a way to use all the cherries we bought at the market the other day. Every time we go grocery shopping, one of us ends up putting a big bag of cherries in the cart--they just look so good!

This recipe is grain-free and made without refined sugars (just a little bit of honey--the cherries themselves are sweet enough!). They'd be great right out of the oven with a scoop of your favorite dairy-free (or regular) ice cream, but they also keep pretty well in the fridge and make a delicious snack, dessert, or even a sweet breakfast treat!

Paleo Cherry Cobbler Bars | Freckled Italian

Ingredients:

For the crust:

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 4 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 eggs

For the cherry filling:

  • 2 cups fresh cherries, pitted
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder

For the crumb topping:

  • 4 tablespoons grass-fed butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1-2 tablespoons honey, to drizzle on top

Instructions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the crust ingredients until smooth and well incorporated. Spoon the crust out into a baking dish (I used an 8 x 4 inch one). Press it down well, making sure it's evenly spread out around the bottom of the dish and up the sides a bit. (I actually made my crust too thick this time, so next time I'll be sure to really pat it down so it's a bit thinner.) Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
  3. While the crust is baking, transfer pitted cherries, honey, and vanilla extract to a small sauce pot. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. Once the cherries have expelled some liquid, add the arrowroot powder and stir well to combine. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine the grass-fed butter and coconut flower together until crumbly (you should be able to handle it with your fingers). 
  5. Pour the cherry filling over the crust and top with the coconut flour crumb topping. Drizzle with half of the honey and bake at 350 for an additional 20 minutes. Remove from heat, drizzle with more honey, and serve warm.
Paleo Cherry Cobbler Bars | Freckled Italian
Paleo Cherry Cobbler Bars | Freckled Italian

Meyer Lemons and Fenced-In Backyards

Meyer Lemons and Fenced-In Backyards

I have a very annoying habit of wanting to move into a new place at least 4 months before our current lease is up. I did it once in Charlotte and I just did it again a few weeks ago here in California. I think it has something to do with spring--the days get longer and the weather is nicer and I dream about living in a house with a big open kitchen; a yard that's fenced in for Ender to frolic about; and now that we're in California, a fruit tree of some kind or maybe a rose bush (or maybe even both).

So I get on Craigslist or Zillow and start looking, and suddenly every house I encounter becomes The House, and we have to go look at it immediately and should we get sub-leasers or look into just breaking our current lease? Poor Rob tags along with me to look at one or two places, and my intensity becomes so extreme that we both forget how stupid it would be to break a lease that only has four months left on it.

Luckily this time we decided to take a deep breath and just wait; and I came out of my frenzy a few days later kind of embarrassed about the woman who looked at The Tiniest House in San Jose and was willing to keep her dresser in the garage and take a door off its hinges in order to fit her bed in the bedroom.

That actually happened.

The next day we went to San Mateo to look at one more place before deciding officially to wait until September to do another tour, and the house was perfect except that Caltrain was too far away and there were no shuttle stops for Rob to get to work and the timing was just really off. It had a big backyard with tons of roses and plenty of room for Ender to run around, it was in our budget and had a little dining nook that we could use as an office, and the kitchen was large enough that we could put our dinner table (which we never actually use) in it. The bedrooms were large enough to hold a bed and some furniture. And then there was a Meyer lemon tree right off the front patio, from which I plucked one perfect, juicy lemon on our way back to the car. 

When I was younger my family lived in Redwood City and I used to cross the street and go to my best friend Whitney's house. We would splash around in the pool and run around the side of the house, picking the Meyer lemons from the front yard; peeling and eating them like oranges. The smell of those lemons was so distinct, and so different from the regular ones you buy at the supermarket that as I sat there in the passenger seat of our car, I breathed it in again and remembered the sort of surreal detail that I've been here before--this is not my first time living in the Bay Area. 

Sometimes on our way somewhere, without meaning to we'll drive by my old house and I'll remember exactly how it felt to stand in that front yard, to cross the street to Whitney's house for lemons and mac n' cheese, the way the lion statues in the park felt as I ran my tiny hands across their stone manes and tails.

I have spent a lot of the past 8 months rebelling against the fact that we're here for the long term, and I still find myself daydreaming about moving back to Charlotte, to a small city that's manageable and friendly and I can run into people I love by accident at the coffee shop. But the fact of the matter is that we don't live in Charlotte anymore, and whether it feels like it or not at times, the Bay Area is our home now. 

I have a small group of friends in town and an extended family nearby, a new routine that includes so much Pure Barre (and when it comes to the blog hopefully a lot more writing and cooking), and in four months maybe we'll be in a house with a yard where Ender can splash around in the sprinkler and run around the side of the house on a hot day as I sit in the sun, peeling and eating a Meyer lemon like an orange; the same way I did back then.

A Few Peeks into Our Bedroom

This post is sponsored by Chesapeake Bay Candles.

A Few Peeks into Our Bedroom | Freckled Italian

I've spent a lot of time focusing on our living room, because that's the space in our house that we spend the most time in and also because it's the first thing you see when you walk in. I love greeting guests with a tidy and well-designed area to relax, but lately I've been feeling an itch to give our bedroom the same amount of love and attention that I've bestowed upon our living room.

It is, after all, where we begin and end each day, so shouldn't it be just as nice as the places in your house that everyone sees? That's always been my excuse--our bedroom can be busy because only Rob and I ever see it, but there's nothing worse than waking up to a cluttered bedroom.

When Rob and I got married and registered for gifts, we made a conscious decision to do all white linens for our bedroom and bathroom. Our furniture is all white, so I figured having a white bed and towels would make it easy to mix things up later with colorful details. We've actually stuck to a neutral pallet and I like it that way--it's very calming and a nice escape when you need to relax.

A Few Peeks into Our Bedroom | Freckled Italian

I was so excited when Chesapeake Bay Candle contacted me to work on a post with them because I've always loved incorporating candles into my decor, and these ones are really special. I thought I'd start the long process of decluttering and styling with a tiny little piece--my nightstand. Nothing says "home sweet home" to me more than a nice candle and some fresh flowers, so I cleaned off the surface that had been holding onto a collection of water glasses and phone/computer chargers and replaced them with Chesapeake Bay's Balance + Harmony candle (it smells like waterlilies and pear and has orange essential oil!) and a cocktail glass full of white roses, which I placed on top of a stack of books I pulled from my bookcase to match the lovely aqua jar of the candle.

Here are the other candles Chesapeake Bay sent me to infuse my home with little moments of stillness and tranquility!

  • Focus + Patience: Has a fragrance of tobacco cedar. Any candle with tobacco notes is definitely a winner for me. This one is going on my desk for sure.

  • Love + Passion: I’m a big fan of the color of this jar, and the grapefruit mango scent is perfect for the kitchen.

  • Strength + Energy: This one is really nice, with notes of bergamot (one of my all-time favorite fragrances) and verbena. I’m going to put this one on my coffee table.

A Few Peeks into Our Bedroom

I love it when something as simple as a candle inspires me to put the finishing touches on the space around me. I love the minimalistic design and the not-too-powerful fragrances that come from the candles. All the scents come in different colored jars, but they’re frosted and on the lighter side, so they will fit into your home no matter your style. And, as I’m sure you can imagine from some of the images in this post, they are Ender Peterson approved.

Now I’m off to cuddle that dog of mine in bed with a book!

A Few Peeks into Our Bedroom | Freckled Italian