Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Creamy potato soup dairy free gluten free

So good! Cook 4 pieces of bacon over medium heat 5 minutes. 
Add 1/4 cup chopped leeks and 1/4 cup chopped onion and cook 5 minutes more.
Add 2 tablespoons gluten free flour (Namaste all purpose or other) and stir well.
Add 6 cups chicken stock, stir well.
Add 3 large chopped peeled potatoes.
Bring to boil then simmer 45 minutes.
Add 1 tub of Toffuti Sour cream, stir and serve.
Optional- garnish with bacon, parsley, salt and pepper to taste.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Turkey, Gluten Free Stuffing, Green Beans, Mashed Potatoes and Gluten Free Gravy

Because let's face it...I'm thankful in September, too. The weather has finally dipped down into fall temperatures and suddenly, I'm craving turkey. Well, to be completely honest, I was craving the STUFFING and GRAVY, but usually those accompany the turkey meal.
So, I wake up and toss together a feast for our Saturday (and plenty of left overs to feed us all week!)

The turkey: I don't do anything fancy. I just follow directions, keep it covered for most of the cooking time, and so far I haven't had any bad turkeys. I do tend to pick 20lb + birds, and then I invite as many people as I can to help us eat that much food!

The stuffing: This time, I whipped up a batch of Breads From Anna dairy free, gluten free, soy free bread mix. I truly love Anna's mixes. Now that I am feeling the fall, I will begin baking again! So, the bread...you can add all your stuffing spices to your bread (Or buy Anna's herb mix), but I wanted some plain slices, so I didn't do that. Instead, I chopped up the loaf (all but four slices) into large cubes.
In a pan on the stove, I sauteed some earth balance butter with
  • 1 chopped small onion
  • 5 chopped stalks of celery
  • 1 tsp sage (ground)
  • 1/2 tsp rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1 tablespoon parsley
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock - gluten free
I cooked these on low heat, covered, until tender. Add this to the
  • cubed gluten free bread and mix around with hands.
  • Add more chicken stock to moisten. (aprox 1/2 - 3/4 cup)
This time I stuffed the bird, which added at least an hour to the cook time. If you have time, go for it, but if you find yourself impatient (as I typically am) cook the stuffing on the stovetop or bake it side by side with the bird (keep the stuffing covered).

If you like your turkey golden, take the lid off for the last 30-45 minutes of cooking.

The green beans: in a pan on the stove sautee at low heat
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1/2 tsp basil
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 4-5 cups green beans
You can start these early, while the turkey is cooking, and just cook them low and slow. Turn heat off when they are finished, and let them sit, covered, on the stove. Warm a bit just before serving if needed.

The mashed potatoes: Not too much to say about this. Cook potatoes in boiling water, peel them if you like, or leave the cleaned skins on if you like. Mash them up well and add rice milk, salt, and earth balance butter to taste.

The gravy: As SOON as your turkey is done, carefully remove it form the pan and get started on gravy. In a small dish mix together
  • 1/4 cup corn starch or rice flour (white)
  • 1/4 cup water
Put your turkey roaster pan over the stove burners on medium heat (this is assuming your pan is meant to be put over open flame!). Add some of the cornstarch mixture and whisk your turkey juices until they begin to thicken. Add more cornstarch/water mixture as needed. You want to bring this to a boil in order to thicken quickly and easily. As soon as it is to your liking, pour it into your gravy boat and go eat!

Carving the turkey: I highly recommend you watch this short video on how to carve the turkey. It's very effective and easy, plus it makes clean up a breeze!

Now, enjoy and look forward to many wonderful foods you can create with the leftovers!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Disney's Be Our Guest lunch fast pass pre order with allergies - wheat and dairy free

 With an upcoming trip to Walt Disney World, I was excited to try out the new Be Our Guest restaurant. I was unable to secure a reservation at this popular destination for dinner, but I did manage to grab a lunch fast pass reservation. To bypass one step upon ordering, you have the option of selecting your meal in advance. I was curious if this was something that would work for people with basic food allergies, and here is what I uncovered.
When you have a fast pass reservation for lunch, you will have the option to choose lunch menus for your party. There is a "Filter" button on the bottom of the ordering screen. Click that button to see the window titled "Allergens". If your allergens are among this list, then you may feel comfortable pre ordering. There is an allergen disclaimer at the bottom, and I am sure you are welcome to wait and order at the restaurant where you can speak to a chef and ensure safe meal options.

 I selected 2 filter items, Wheat and Milk. I preceded to the next screen on entrees where I found several choices that would work for those allergy restrictions. I chose the Quinoa salad.
By adding the menu item from this "filter" window, it tags the foods as "wheat free" and "milk free" on the summary page to follow. If you order the same entree item without first applying the filters it will not mark it as "wheat free" or "dairy free". So, I would definitely do that step and ensure that label appears (see photo below for orange triangle followed by warning of "Does not contain: Wheat").

While there was a wonderful option for a gluten free dessert, there was nothing that came up as wheat free and milk free.  I did find two sorbet options that are marked dairy free and no sugar added (lemon and raspberry).
So, for others who were wondering if there is a process for those of us with basic allergens, the answer appears to be yes. However, note that they don't declare "gluten free" or "dairy free", so we will still have to discuss our options with a chef to ensure safety. We look forward to trying out this new restaurant experience and I will definitely come back with photos of our gluten free and dairy free final selections.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Corn Coconut Ginger Soup gluten free dairy free vegetarian version

My sister has made this soup for us over the years, and it is a family favorite. I'm posting the recipe here so that I don't have to keep bugging her for it each fall, when the weather cools. Now I can just grab and go. We love the gentle spice from the ginger and the sweetness brought in from the corn. I hope you like it, too!

  • 1 large or 2 medium onions, diced
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 2 tablespoons olive or avocado oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped finely 
  • 2 cans natural coconut milk (not light)
  • 4 cubes of Edward and Sons Not Chick'n mixed with 8 cups hot water
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • dash of pepper
  • 2 1/2 cups frozen sweet corn
  • 3 tablespoons dried ginger
Saute onions and oil in pan for 3-5 minutes over medium low heat. Add chopped red peppers and saute 3-5 more minutes. Add chopped garlic. Mix in dried ginger and stir well. Cook for 1-2 minutes more before adding 8 cups of broth, followed by coconut milk. Add salt, pepper, corn and stir. Let cook over low heat additional 30-45 minutes and serve.

Of course you can use any broth in place of the Not Chick'n. This just makes for a very easy to put together and delicious soup when you are serving vegetarians who need a gluten free safe soup. Enjoy.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Gluten Free Chicken Fried Rice Lunch Dairy Free lunches

My youngest likes chicken fried rice in her lunch, and what an easy quick lunch to throw together the day after we have had chicken and rice with supper.
In the morning, I take 1-2 cups of leftover cooked rice and start warming it in the pan with a splash of water. I add in thin sliced carrots and gluten free soy sauce. When the temperature is up, I mix in a raw egg, stirring as it cooks. Super easy. Once the egg is cooked, I then top with green onions and mix them into the fried rice.  This pairs nicely with a side of fresh fruit or a fruit smoothie in a thermos.

Squash Pie gluten free dairy free paleo option

This is one of my favorite desserts, ever.I just love the Garden of Eating recipe for Squash Pie, found here on Rachel's blog. I simply my preparation even a bit further by just cooking a whole butternut squash for 1 hour in the oven, then scooping the flesh into the VitaMix. I add these slightly modified ingredients
  • (3/4 C coconut milk, 
  • 3 eggs, 
  • 1/4 cup honey plus 
  • 1/4 tsp stevia, 
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons tapioca starch which can be swapped for nut flour if you are going starch free, 
  • 1 tsp cinnamon, 
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice, 
  • dash of salt 
 into the blender and mix. I dump it into my baking dish and bake at 350 for 1 hour. It's so easy, and so delicious! I recommend letting it cool completely, as the cold serving brings out the natural sweetness. Enjoy! I even love this more than homemade pumpkin pie, and that is high praise coming from me :)

Monday, September 8, 2014

Sushi and school lunch gluten free dairy free

So, I will be adding some new school lunches this year, now that my youngest is joining the middle school ranks.  She is currently requesting a variety of Asian food delights, and we have had fun making some new things together. For our first try, we made these Maki rolls. It is a very simple list of ingredients:
  • Sushi Rice
  • Nori sheets
  • Rice Wine Vinegar
  • Water
  • Sliced cucumbers, carrots, leftover chicken or any filling you like
I bought 1 bag of Lundberg Sushi Rice and I followed the instructions for cooking 2 cups of rice, which involved
Lundberg Sushi Rice Directions:
2 cup sushi rice, rinsed well and soak for 30 minutes. Drain. Add
2 1/4 cup water and bring to boil with lid on.
Simmer 10 minutes.
Remove from heat and let sit another 10 minutes (leave lid of throughout).
Add mix of 1/4 cup Rice Wine Vinegar, 1/2 Tablespoon salt, 1/2 Tablespoon sugar or honey. Stir into rice and let rice cool.

Now that the rice is ready, you can cut your veggies and proteins. You will need a bamboo mat to roll the sushi easily. I picked mine up at a bookstore for $5 with a step by step book on how to make sushi. I would imagine these are available at local Asian markets as well.

I laid the Nori sheet on the bamboo mat and layered with rice, leaving 1/2 inch space around the edges. I kept my hands wet with water to press the rice down without it sticking. I recommend you look up images of how to do this if you don't have a book, as I didn't think to take step by step photos this time. My youngest rolled the sushi and they turned out great and easy to make. You will need to wash your knife between each roll to continue clean cuts. This was a fun way to make another gluten free dairy free lunch option that travels nicely.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Betty Crocker Hershey's Gluten Free Cookies and Cream Frosting and Smores!

Ok, so I do love to bake and it seems as though we have had many reasons to whip up desserts around here lately. My favorite cake mix is the King Arthur gluten free chocolate. I make these, frequently, when I'm bringing a dessert to share with others. While I love baking, I am not the best with frosting. Often, I make my own, and it's good, but sometimes I am just in a hurry and I want to pick up something that is ready to use. Imagine my delight when I saw these new flavors from Betty Crocker that were labled gluten free? Additionally, they do not add dairy to the ingredients, which is a bonus for us. I was further pleased that the fat was not a hydrogenated oil, as if often found on frosting labels. It is palm shortening. These frosting containers come with a topper of crumbles to sprinkle on the cakes. The base ingredients for the crumbles are rice and tapioca. I am so pleased for this quick option that is sure to be fun for kids. My own daughter has very limited exposure to cookies n creme, but I can attest that the frosting does taste like that cream filling. The cookie crunch is a nice touch.
So, while homemade butter cream is still a tastier choice, enjoy this quick fix for the times you are in a hurry.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Blueberry Lover - A Blueberry Crisp gluten free dairy free SCD option

 Ok, be warned, this is a blueberry crisp for true blueberry lovers. If you are imagining those diner style crisps with a burst of sugar and granular explosion upon first bite...this is not that. This is a subtle sweetness, bit of crunch, but primarily, blueberry overload for those of us who just love blueberries. Now that we have that all cleared up, and you're still with me, enjoy the recipe!

Ingredients (with SCD variation):
  • 5 Cups blueberries
  • 1 C gluten free oats (For SCD version, use ground nuts or nut flour of choice)
  • 1/2 Cup almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 Cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 Cup maple syrup (for SCD version, use honey)
  • 1/3 Cup chopped pecans
  • 1 Tablespoon water (for SCD version, omit)
  • 2 Tablespoons maple syrup (for SCD version use honey)
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons tapioca pearls (for SCD version, omit)
Pour your rinsed blueberries into a 9x13 cake dish. In a bowl, mix 1 C oats, 1/2 C almond flour, 1/3 C pecans, 1/2 tsp salt. Add coconut oil and mix. Add 1/4 cup maple syrup and mix. Set aside.
In second, smaller bowl, mix 2 Tablespoons of maple syrup with 1 Tablespoon water. Pour that 3 Tablespoon liquid mix over blueberries and stir around.  Sprinkle the tapioca pearls among the blueberries  as shown in photo. This will help thicken the liquid as it cooks and then cools.
Top with oat/nut mixture and bake at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes, covered.  Remove cover and bake additional 20 minutes.

Let cool before serving. This is a subtle flavor and a very yummy blueberry overload for those times of year when blueberries are calling to you.

Variations: Want more topping? I know, everybody does. You can double the recipe for the topping to make this a more traditional crisp. Just cut your serving size down to help compensate. Also, consider cutting the berries back to 2 cups and adding 3 cups chopped peaches.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Lime Garlic Skirt Steak, Cuban Mojo, Cilantro Slaw gluten free dairy free

Click Here for Cookbook linkLunch at our house was delightful today thanks to my husband. He marinated a tri tip steak (flank or skirt works as well) in garlic and lime juice per the recipe found in the Artisanal Gluten Free Cooking book by Kelli and Peter Bronski. I have been asked many times, over the years, what is my favorite gluten free cookbook. While I do have a favorite basic cookbook that focuses on the foundations of healthy eating (The Garden of Eating Diet by Rachel Mastez), my favorite gluten free specific cookbook has been this Artisanal Gluten Free Cooking for the past 5+ years. The recipes span the globe with a variety of taste profiles while managing to maintain usability in an average American kitchen. The staples are great, the gluten free flour mix is very good, and everything I make from this book is a winner.
The lunch we had today included this simple steak recipe, which is primarily lime juice and garlic marinade. The topping of Cuban Mojo is a mixture of green bell pepper, cilantro, garlic, and more lime juice. We found that this combination was delightful with a Coleslaw recipe found in the book that features cilantro.
While I love these, our family made a couple minor modifications.  For one, we would cut the salt back to 1/2 tsp on the Cuban Mojo and we would add the juice of 2 limes to the coleslaw. Such a great flavor combination!
I highly recommend you pick up a copy of this book (click book image, or here), and try the above as well as the German potato salad, the scones, and the apple crisp. Those are my favorites!
Also, this would be a terrific meal to serve leftover for a lunch salad that would pack nicely cold and topped with tomatoes! School starts soon!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Gluten Free Dairy Free School Lunches

Lively Lunchboxes - That kids will eat!

As a mother of young children, I know how it is to be on the go and in need of some quick foods from time to time. In addition, we want a healthy diet to be a positive experience for our children so that they are encouraged to stick to it as they grow older.

Sending school children off with gluten and dairy free lunches may sound like a challenge, but here is a great link to help you get started. Click here to see more of Bean's Gluten Free, Dairy Free lunches. In addition, you'll notice her lunches are free of artificial dyes or coloring agents. Furthermore, many if not all of the lunches can be made without soy and egg, if needed. Enjoy!

Pictured: This lunch includes a fresh fajita salad, utilizing leftovers from the night prior. Bean likes cabbage and cilantro in place of lettuce, but you can use whatever you like! Sides include carrots, Pirate Booty, all natural fruit roll up and Honest Kids juice.