this past weekend sasha from the beautiful site, tending the table made her way down to los angeles. she and i had been planning a shoot for almost a month before she got here. we went back and forth about recipe ideas - we originally were thinking gazpacho but somehow we made our way to these blondies ;) we also secured a sponsorship with one of our favorite brands, california olive ranch, and made it our goal to make a recipe that highlighted their delicious olive oil. so last sunday i met sasha at one of my favorite spots of all time, cookbook. we chatted a bit and then drove to the farmers market. we circled the market a few times scouting all the beautiful produce they had, and settled on a flat of strawberries, and another flat of blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries.
when we got back to my place, we quickly got to work measuring out our ingredients and stirring everything together. once the blondies were in the oven we got to styling and shooting. i was most looking forward to having fresh eyes in my space. so often i reach for the same props or style things in a simple, time-saving way. but with a free (baby-less) day to work and being alongside sasha revived a feeling i haven't had in some time. it was so nice to focus on work and not have to worry about 5 other things simultaneously. plus, it was such a pleasure working alongside someone who's work i've admired for some time. we styled and shot things in a backward motion starting with a few ingredients shots, then some berries shots; and then, once the blondies cooled, we got to work on them. they weren't completely cooled when i lifted them from the pan (i should have listened to my recipe notes!), and they cracked a little in the center. i would normally freak out and try my best to squish them back together but sasha, very coolly, said that they looked better that way, so i went with it ;) after we finished we talked some more about life and work, and it couldn't have been a nicer afternoon.
you wouldn't guess by looking at them, but these blondies are quite rich. they're definitely on the sweet side which is why using olive oil is so key, as it helps to mellow the sweetness and provide a subtle earthiness. the berries are a bonus here as well. while they are sweet on their own, when paired with the blondies their flavor and slight tartness produces the ultimate summer treat!
xo's! and be sure to check out sasha's site and her beautiful strawberry shot below 😍
this post was made in collaboration with california olive ranch. all thoughts and opinions, as always, are my own. thank you so much for supporting the sponsors that keep dolly and oatmeal going ❤️
red berry almond blondies | gf & df
just like the perfect brownie, these blondies are quite dense and dare i say, gooey. they're grain free, naturally gluten free, and free of dairy. they're also on the sweet side. i would say these border on the almost too sweet side for my taste, but i know blondies/brownies are supposed to be ;) the berries really cut through a lot of the sweetness, so i wouldn't leave them out, but they could definitely be swapped for your (tart) fruit of choice.
| makes 16 blondies |
- 1 1/4 cups almond flour
- 1/2 cup arrowroot powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/4 cups coconut sugar
- 1/2 cup california olive ranch olive oil
- 2 large pasture raised eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 cup fresh strawberries, halved or quartered (depending on size)
- handful of fresh raspberries
- sliced almonds, for garnish
- powdered sugar, for garnish
- preheat oven to 350°F. grease an 8x8-inch square baking pan, and line it with a parchment paper sling.
- in a large bowl, whisk together the almond flour, arrowroot, baking powder, and salt. in another large bowl, whisk together the oil and sugar until the mixture looks like wet sand, whisk in the eggs and vanilla until combined.
- add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir to combine. spread the batter evenly into the corners and sides of the pan.
- bake for 28-35 minutes, scattering the berries on top of the blondies halfway through baking. bake until a cake tester or toothpick come out mostly clean (you want a couple of crumbs to cling).
- let the blondies cool on a rack. once completely cool, run a thin knife around the edges to loosen them. use the parchment paper wings to carefully lift the blondies from the pan.
- dust with powdered sugar, and slivered almonds (if desired). slice into 16 squares.