Happy 4th of July! Someone asked me this week what we were doing for the 4th. “Praying for rain,” I responded. He looked at me questioningly, trying to decide if I was unpatriotic, I guess. Far from it. My family and I are as patriotic as they come. My husband and I are both former military, and we even planned our wedding the week of the 4th so we could have a patriotic color scheme in our wedding. We get lumps in our throat when the national anthem is played, and can’t hold back tears upon hearing or reading any soldier story of valor or heroism. My family and I recently had the great privilege of watching twenty-one Air Force C-17’s fly in a line-up to pick up paratroopers, and two of them dipped their wings as if to wave at the crowd gathered. I couldn’t even speak I was so moved. Whenever my kids and I see military planes, we wave and say “God bless you on your journey,” and we almost kill ourselves to run outside when we hear the sound of jets flying over. My kids always say, “That’s the sound of freedom.” We are truly, truly so blessed and thankful to live in the USA. So back to why we pray for rain on the 4th. We only want rain after dark; we’re fine with sunshine all day so everyone can enjoy their grilling and day at the beach, but when night falls, please, please let there be torrential downpours. Please let the heavens open and unleash every ounce of moisture it has. If it doesn’t, we will have one miserable July 4th evening and an even worse July 5th. Why? One of our dogs, Buck, is terrified of fireworks, absolutely terrified. Buck used to live with people with a rotten little boy who set off fireworks by Buck’s head. We live in a residential neighborhood, and fireworks are allowed where we live only on Christmas (have no idea why, as Christmas is not usually a fireworks holiday), New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, and the 4th of July. Unfortunately, we have neighbors who apparently start making layaway payments on fireworks starting about July 5th and pay on them all year because they buy enough to supply most municipalities in the state with pyrotechnics for their official July 4th celebrations. And these aren’t your happy little sparkler variety fireworks. They sound like we’re in Fallujah or Mosul. My husband said that if he had PTSD, he could easily go off the deep end and think he’s in Iraq and then end up on the evening news. The fireworks are that bad. The neighbors start up as soon as it’s dark and continue until the wee hours of the morning. Buck shakes violently and whimpers and pants and has to be put in his thundershirt and constantly held or patted by someone. We have to stay with him all night to comfort him, and no one can sleep anyway because of all the blasts. It’s a long, frustrating night and a very miserable next day.
That being said, we do what we can to enjoy July 4th festivities before the 4th, which for us, means making red, white, and blue goodies. When I asked my kids what they wanted me to make, there was no agreement between popsicles and doughnuts. My husband voted for brownies, but he lost out as I didn’t deem those very “4th-ish” . Since I was making red, white, and blue popsicles for my one daughter, I thought I should make red, white, and blue doughnuts for my other daughter so she wouldn’t feel her choice wasn’t as festive. I had never seen red, white, and blue doughnuts anywhere, but I knew it could be done, as I frequently use beet powder in anything I want to make red. I was SO, SO excited with how the doughnuts turned out. I promise you will not taste the beet powder in them. They are not only delicious, but they’re so pretty and festive, I think, and my girls described the popsicles as “addictive.” The hardest part of the popsicle recipe is the waiting for each layer to freeze. If you don’t wait long enough between freezing each layer, the colors will run, as mine did. My one daughter is extremely impatient about waiting for popsicles, so I rushed the process and ended up with my blueberry bleeding into the white. But that’s OK; they still look pretty. I kept hearing, “Are the popsicles ready yet? Are the popsicles ready yet?” Both the doughnuts and popsicles are free of any refined sugar and artificial colors. The doughnuts are made with einkorn flour. Einkorn is an ancient grain which has never been hybridized, is more nutritious than modern wheat, and has a much different gluten. Many people with sensitivities to modern wheat can often tolerate einkorn. Read more about the goodness of einkorn here. I hope you enjoy these, and may you and yours have a wonderful 4th. Now, back to praying for rain . . .
- 2 ¼ cups einkorn flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- ¼ cup avocado oil
- 1 egg, beaten
- ⅔ cup milk (can be dairy-free; I used cashew milk)
- ⅔ cup maple syrup
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 Tbsp. beet powder
- ½ cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Lightly oil two doughnut pans (6 wells in each pan).
- Sift first three ingredients into a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine oil, egg, milk, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Whisk to combine.
- Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir together until just combined. Pour batter into a 4 cup measuring cup. You should have about 2 ½ cups of batter.
- Remove 1 ¼ cups batter from the measuring cup and place into a bowl. (Or depending on how much batter you have, divide batter into equal amounts in separate bowls).
- Add 2 Tbsp. beet powder to half the batter and stir until uniform in color.
- Add the ½ cup blueberries to the remaining batter and gently stir until just mixed in.
- Spoon or pour white/blueberry batter into doughnut well, pouring batter on opposite sides of each well, leaving a space between each dollop of batter.
- Spoon beet batter into wells in between the blueberry/white batter.
- Bake at 350 for 14 minutes.
- Remove from oven and leave to cool in pans for 5 minutes.
- Turn doughnuts onto cooling racks and proceed to glaze.
2/3 cup coconut cream concentrate (also called coconut manna)
2 Tbsp. butter, coconut, or avocado oil
3 Tbsp. maple syrup
2 tsp. vanilla
1 Tbsp. water
2) Stir gently to combine.
3) As ingredients are just melted, dip each doughnut into glaze and return to cooling
4) Sprinkle with red and blue sprinkles if you wish.