Tuesday, May 27, 2008

out of touch

i am out of touch with reality but as that is not new for me this post is really to let you know i am out of touch with the internet as it got struck by lighting last friday so i will catch up on post if and when they decide to come and fix it and i buy a new wireless modem

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Raspberry Bread Pudding

I was feeling a bit nostalgic this week so with the food joust lingering to be done and no dessert for the week planned I decided on a raspberry almond bread pudding. The nostalgic part came from the announcement that my younger brother would be joining the army. This took me back to my brief enlistment a few years back where I remember living on bread pudding. I looked forward to this brief edible dessert even though I had never been a big fan of it. I do not however recomend joining the army to eat bread pudding as almost anything tastes good when you are hungery and tired.

Honey Almond Bread
1 cup white rice flour, 1 cup brown rice flour, 1/2 cup potatoe starch, 1/2 cup tapioca starch (or 3 cups of your favorite flour blend)
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 Tbs xanthan gum
1 TBS salt
2 pkgs regular or quick-acting active dry yeast
2 1/4 cup very warm water (120 to 130 degrees)
2 cups almond meal

Mix flours, honey, oil, salt, and yeast in large bowl. Add warm water. Beat on low speed 1 minute, scraping bowl frequently. Beat on medium speed 1 minute, scraping bowl frequently. Stir in almond meal, 1 cup at a time, to make dough easy to handle.
Turn dough onto lightly floured surface; knead about 10 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place in bowl sprayed with non-stick cooking spray; spray the top of dough with non-stick cooking spray. Cover and let rise in warm place 40 to 60 minutes or until double. (Dough is ready when indentation remains when touched.)
Spray 2 loaf pans with nonstick cooking spray. Punch down dough; divide in half and place in loaf pans. Let rise 35 to 50 minutes or until double.
Move oven rack to lowest position. Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Place loaves on lowest oven rack. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until loaves are deep golden brown and sound hollow when tapped. Remove from pans; cool on wire rack.

Allow bread and then chop about 1 1/2 loaves into cubes and let sit for couple hours or overnight.(since this is a dense gf bread it does not need to stale as long as regular bread)

2 cups frozen or fresh raspverries
6 eggs, beaten
3/4 cup white sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
3 cups scalded milk
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly butter one 2 quart baking dish. Combine bread cubes and raspberries; mix well and place in baking dish. Beat together the eggs, sugar, vanilla and salt. Add milk, mix well and pour over bread cubes. Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown and set

Raspberry Sauce
1 pkg. frozen raspberries
2 Tbs. armareto (optional)
4 Tbs. lime juice

Combine in sauce pan and heat until just warm and raspberries are defrosted.

Go Ahead Honey its Gluten Free (Breakfast)

Breakfast during the week is usually a bowl of cereal since we are not morning people but on the weekends I try to make up for it with a big breakfast. That was until egg pie came back into my life. I know you are thinking what is egg pie so for those without fussy kids or picky husbands (I have both) it would be called quiche. Egg pie has all the makings of a big breakfast in an easy reheatable size and since the crust is potatoes even my hubby might try it. He has been gone so long I can't remember all his pickiness but i may have to leave the chives out or chop them smaller for him lol.

3 medium potatoes
2 Tbs butter or margarine

Cook potatoes, covered, in boiling salted water until tender. Drain; peel. Mash with a potato masher; measure 1 1/3 cups. Stir in butter or margarine.

Spoon into a greased 9 inch pie plate. Spread over bottom and up sides of plate; build up sides with a spoon to form a crust.

Bake at 375 for about 20 min. This is to set the potatoes not to necessarily brown them. The crust should appear slightly dry.

3 eggs beaten
6 slices cooked bacon chopped
1 cup milk
1 cup cheddar cheese shredded
2-3 Tbs chopped herb (I use chives but use your favorite)
salt and pepper

Mix all of the ingredients together and pour into crust. Bake at 375 until puffed and golden. About 30 to 50 minutes I believe (sorry lost track of time)

I like mine with sour cream and salsa and my son likes his with just sour cream since he fears the word salsa.

If you would like to share your favorite gluten free breakfast head over to Straight Into Bed Cakefree and Dried and check out Go Ahead Honey It's Gluten Free.

strawberry salsa

Sorry it took so long to post this recipe but it is hard to keep strawberries in the house long enough to make anything with. My darling boy is a fruit monster and will take a whole package of them to eat as a snack. Now I have to admit I have never measured when making this so my recipe is more of a guideline. Please feel free to alter the recipe to suit your tastes or mood because I know I do (in fact this was an alteration of my pico de galle salsa)

1 cup chopped strawberries
1/2 cup diced cucumber
1/4 cup minced red onion
1 clove minced garlic
2-3 Tbs chopped cilantro
1 Tbs lime juice
1 Tbs lemon juice
1 tsp sugar
salt and pepper to taste

Mix it up and enjoy

menu swap for may 18-24

This weeks theme ingredient is avocados, what fun. I love avocados. They are high in potassium with 60% more then bananas. hopefully i will have time to create something exciting with them, but with my mom just leaving i have a lot of work to do around the house to start getting ready for hubby to come home in a couple months. Also I am currently working on several culinary projects as I keep finding new web events. I love these events because it pushes me to create, so check in and see what I have going on.

Sunday: chicken tortilla soup topped with avocado slices

Monday: cali style hamburger steaks with sweet potato fries

Tuesday: pasta with pesto

Wednesday: ribs yet again (they are my sons new favorite food)

Thursday: grilled chicken with salad

Friday: nachos with salsa and guacamole

Saturday: steak and salad

Dessert of the week is top secret right now you will just have to wait for the post

This weeks menu swap is being hosted by M-Elle at Cooking and UNcooking, so hop over there at check out what everyone else has planned.

Friday, May 16, 2008

to market to market

This is by far my favorite market because it is small and only sells fruits, vegetables, cheese, etc. Italy is home to weekly markets and every town has their own but food stands tend to get lost among seas of clothes and home decor. Large markets can be very crowded and small markets hard to find. I was glad when I heard about this market on Saturday mornings in downtown Vicenza because I knew exactly where it was plus it was an all organic market. What could be better?

I found the most beautiful fruits and could not resist the fresh goat cheese. There was a vendor with different types of bread but unfortunately they had no senza glunetine (pouting).
If you would like to learn about other markets check out A Scientist in the Kitchen who hosts To Market, To Market as a chance for people to share markets in the areas they live or travel to. It is a great way to learn about different markets and to celebrate the tradition of farmers markets.

quinoa and goat cheese salad

This is a salad I created for No Croutons Required challenge hosted by Tinned Tomatoes. Goat cheese is very fresh right now so I could not resist it at the market.

4 beefsteak tomatoes, cap removed, cored and hollowed out
2 cups cooked quinoa
½ English cucumber, finely diced
1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/3 cup chopped fresh mint
½ cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup diced carrots
1 cup goat cheese crumbled and divided
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
¼ cup red wine vinegar

Salt the insides of the hollowed out tomatoes and drain them upside down on a rack. In a mixing bowl combine the quinoa, cucumbers, parsley, mint, cranberries, carrots, and half the cheese. Make a dressing of the olive oil, lime juice, and vinegar and toss with the vegetables and quinoa. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and add more olive oil or lime juice if you wish. Stuff salad into tomatoes and top with the remaining cheese.

This was my first time using quinoa and I am in love all though my son didn't care for the texture very much he liked the taste of the salad.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

menu swap for may 11- 17

I am so excited to be hosting this weeks menu swap. I picked strawberries this week because the season is finally starting and the have just been calling my name. Strawberries are very low in calories but high in vitamin C and flavonoids. Flavonoids are a major antioxidant linked to protection from some cancers and heart disease. Strawberries are also a very versatile fruit as they can be used in sweet and savory dishes.

Sunday: mothers day brunch cheese blitz, fried potatoes, bacon, and eggs

Monday: spaghetti with homemade tomato sauce

Tuesday: Leftovers

Wednesday: carolina style baby back ribs with strawberry spinach salad

Thursday: hamburger steaks and french fries

Friday: cheese quesidila's with strawberry salsa

Saturday: sandwiches

my dessert for the week will be strawberry ice cream

This week I also have several culinary adventures going on so check in on them:
citrus dessert
cheese salad
2 new breakfast dishes
and more to follow

Manda over at Asparagus Thin has a busy week of exams ahead but plans on feasting on a wonderful menu of Korean, Indian, and Japanese. She is also very excited about how well her menu paired up from the market. I am personally hoping to hear more about those plantain chips with strawberry, tomato chutney.

Mary over at Gluten Free Cooking School has brightened my morning with some kind words as well as an exciting menu. She is also planning on testing some new items for her blog with the menu she has planned so keep your eye out.

Sea at the Book of Yum has a busy week and a wonderful menu planned. She also promises yummy new recipes to come, but needs lots of encouragement to find the energy to get through the week. So drop in on her and wish her lots of good energy.

Cheryl at the Gluten Free Goodness has an awesome menu up this week featuring fresh herbs from her garden. She is also calling for creative bakers in an awesome web event featuring oats to celebrate her birthday, so hop over there and check that out.

Esther blogging from the Lilac Kitchen has to work the late shift this week and has prepared a simple yet delicious menu. I look forward to hearing more about her cauliflower cheese and hope strawberries make it up north soon.

Gluten Free in the Greens has been playing around beans and has prepared a menu to highlight their flavor. She is attending a wedding on Saturday and has posted a question on gluten free wedding etiquette, so if you have any suggestion pop over there and let her know.

M-Elle has planned a light and healthy fare of salads over at Cooking & Uncooking. She went to the Canadian Celiac Association Conference in Victoria this weekend where she was able to indulge in lots of treats. Look for posts on the conference to come.

Karen at Gluten Free Sox Fan is suffering from lack of inspiration but still managed to pull together a scrumptious menu. She is also preparing to celebrate her nine year anniversary and more importantly ONE YEAR GLUTEN FREE yeah!! Also you can drool over her husbands furniture.

Fresh Ginger shared a wonderful memory with us growing up on a strawberry farm. What Fun! Unfortunately strawberries are not in season for her yet but she has some awesome meals planned including a buffalo wing cook off. So pop in and see what she is up too.

Sally at Aprovechar has an exciting menu focusing on locally grown vegetables and and getting away from processed foods. What an inspiration for me. She has recently given up sheep and goat dairy and is at a loss for some yummy dairy free/soy free cheese, so if you have a favorite drop her a line.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

NQN banana bread bake off

I found yet another foodie event that inspired me to create a new recipe over at Not Quite Nigella. She has a very eclectic and fascinating blog and I urge you to check it out.

This time I had my son in mine, he loves peanut butter sandwiches but so far my attempts at gluten free bread have not tasted good by lunch time. Well the banana bread did in fact he came home and proclaimed the sandwiches awesome.

I made the bread into two mini loaves to make little sandwiches smeared with natural peanut butter and an Italian organic chocolate hazelnut spread. Enjoy my recipe and Ilook forward to trying everyone elses banana bread recipes
4 ripe bananas, mashed
1/3 cup honey
2 eggs
3/4 cup brown rice flour
3/4 cup white rice flour
1/4 cup each potato starch flour and tapioca flour
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease two 4x2 loaf pans and set aside.
In a large bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt. Set aside.
In another bowl, mash the bananas and stir in the eggs and honey. Stir in the flour mixture and
mix until just combined, then fold in the chopped nuts (optional). Pour the batter into the
prepared pans.
bake for aproxamitly 55-60 min

Sunday, May 4, 2008

mad for macaroons in may

I recently stumbled across an awesome web event hosted by Couture Cupcakes called Mad for Macaroons in May. I was so excited because macaroons are so easily gluten free and I am always searching for new treats to serve my family. After searching for a recipe that was easy and that had ingredients available to me I realized i would have to create my own. With a few batches of flat overly sweet sticky messes under my belt I stumbled across a winner.

These cookies turned out dense and chewy yet light and fluffy. I chose to go a different route from the traditional French macaroon though. Instead of using my ganache to make sandwich cookies I paired them with fresh strawberries from the outdoor market and drizzle the ganache over them. From the first bite I knew that these were sure to be a new family favorite and I couldn't wait for my son to get home. Well all I can say is he was sneaky off with cookies before I even got a chance to tell them they were there. The cookies were proclaimed another success, now we just have to wait until daddy gets home in a few months to know for sure.

Ingredients for Almond Macaroons
2 egg white
½ tsp cream of tartar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup almond meal
1. Preheat oven to 350 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Beat the egg whites and then add cream of tartar.
3. Beat egg whites until stiff.
4. Gradually beat in the sugar.
5. Add the almond meal and fold gently
6. Spoon on to lined baking sheet.
7. Bake fifteen to twenty minutes until they turn a nice golden color
8. Remove parchment paper from baking sheet immediately to cool on counter top.
9. The macaroons will then easily peel off.
10. Before baking, the macaroons may be sprinkled with almonds which have been blanched and shredded or chopped

Friday, May 2, 2008

adopt a gluten free blogger

Ginger Lemon Girl is a fellow North Carolinian (even though I am not from there I lived there for 6 years before moving to Italy). She is a busy girl with a new food event I can't wait to learn more about called Kid Friendly Foods Friday as I have a picky son and husband.

I adopted Ginger Lemon Girl this month because I was excited to find her cheddar biscuits. I was so excited I planned a whole Red Lobster dinner around them and I was so glad that I did. The biscuits were so light and yummy. They tasted just like I wanted them to.

I was timid about the big batch of her master baking mix I would need to make for the biscuits, but was glad to see she had other recipes using the mix. Now I also have plenty of mix to make them again. Another plus is my Husband will love them even though they are gluten free. This will be a definite addition to one of his first meals home.

I really enjoyed adopting Carrie and look forward to trying even more of her recipes in the future

I also want to thank Rachel at Wheat-Free, Meat-Free for being such an awesome host this week.