Saturday, November 27, 2010

Finally cooking is done, time to eat!

Mom, Rich, Rachel, James, Dan and I all went to Gramma's for dinner! First course:

Our feast: turkey, stuffings, potatoes, gravies, cabbage salad, cranberry sauce, beets.


Thanksgiving Day Cooking!

Gluten Free Stuffing recipe from Whole Foods


6 cups gluten-free bread cubes or 1 package Gluten Free Bakehouse stuffing cubes, already toasted
2 shallots, minced
2 onions, diced
2 celery ribs, diced
2 carrots, diced
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) salted butter
2 teaspoons dried sage
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons sea salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon ground black pepper, or to taste
1/2 cup white wine
1 cup gluten-free chicken broth
4 tablespoons parsley


Toast bread cubes carefully in a preheated 300°F oven for 20 minutes or until dried, stirring occasionally to promote even browning. If using Gluten Free Bakehouse stuffing cubes, skip this toasting step.

Sauté shallots, onions, celery and carrots in butter until they are soft and onions begin to caramelize. Add sage, thyme, salt and pepper and cook over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add wine and continue cooking over medium heat until liquid is reduced by half.

In a large bowl, mix sautéed vegetables with bread cubes, chicken broth and parsley. Transfer to a baking dish and bake for 20 minutes at 325°F. Serves 8 to 10

Tasted SOOO good with all the spices. But the bread is so dry I think it could use 3 cups of chicken broth instead of one. The parsley in the garden died in the snow so we just went without. Highly recommend this recipe.

Gluten Free Apple Pie, recipe from

1 1/2 cup flour (barley OR wheat OR a Non-Wheat flour)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 tablespoons fat (butter OR margarine OR equivalent)
3 or 4 tablespoons water
Sift all the dry ingredients together. This is important to give some lift to the flour. Cut fat in using two forks or a pastry blender until the mixture resembles clumps about the size of small peas. Add cold water, a little at a time, distributing the water evenly throughout the whole of the mixture. When the mixture sticks together, but is not doughy, roll out onto a table or pie mat dusted with flour. Roll until the dough is of sufficient size to fit into a 9 inch pie pan. Line the pie pan with dough. Bake at 425 F for 10 – 15 minutes. Fill with a cream filling. Makes one 9 in pie crust. This can be frozen and used like a commercial pie crust if desired.
It was difficult to role out, we used wax paper and just kind of pressed it in. It was dry and not very tasty, should have brushed it with sugar. I would try out another one next time with more flours, I just tried to do it simply. It was very very crumbly and needed something more to gel it together.
I decorated it with a palm tree because we should be in Hawaii right now. :-)

Gramma's purty turkey

Gramma's sweet yams with brown sugar/butter

Momma's Apple Pie

Momma's Punkin Pie

Cookin' the night before

And so at 8PM on Wednesday it started. I don't know how hummus got on my list but it did, so I whipped some up. Along with mashed pumpkin/sweet potatoes, gluten free stuffing and a gluten free apple pie.

Allergy Free Hummus (aka, sesame-free)

1 can of garbanzos, drained and SAVE the juice
1 head of garlic, roasted
6 pieces of sun-dried tomatoes
6 kalamata olives
3 Tbs olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

This is where I stopped but it's a bit thick so I also recommend:
1-2 Tbs lemon juice
1/3 cup of saved garbanzo juice

Gluten Free Stuffing
Started making the stuffing by toasting bread crumbs. I used a loaf and a half of Ener-G Brown Rice Loaf from Whole Foods. It worked great.

Toasting away, left them in the oven overnight to really dry out.

Started making the Pumpkin/Sweet Potato mashed. I used the recipe from Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef who adapted it from Soul of a New Cuisine by Samuelssen.

Pumpkin/Sweet Potato Mash

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted fake butter
3 shallots, peeled and sliced (I'm such a crier)
4 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced thin
3-inch-piece ginger, peeled and sliced (didn't have this so I diced the ginger left over from sushi for lunch)
2 cinnamon sticks
1 tablespoons brown sugar
5 sprigs fresh thyme, stems removed and fine chopped (ventured out to mom's garden to find it)
2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch cubes
2-pound pumpkin, peeled, seeded, and cut into 2-inch cubes (ventured to Gramma's to pick up the fresh punkin but, it was already cooked and mashed)
2 cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock) (organic, gluten free-I found that many stocks have msg and hydrolyzed gluten, gross)
2 cups milk (soy milk)
pinch nutmeg
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 chives, fine chopped (another venture to mom's garden)

Preparing to mash. In a deep pot on medium heat, melt the butter. Add the shallots, garlic, ginger, cinnamon sticks, brown sugar, thyme leaves, and cook, stirring, until the sugar melts, about 3 minutes. Throw in the sweet potatoes, pumpkin cubes, chicken stock, and milk of your choice. Bring them all to a simmer. Reduce the heat and cook until the potatoes and pumpkin yield to your fork, about 30 minutes.

Making the mash. Drain the pumpkin and sweet potatoes, saving 1 cup of the liquid. So this part WOULD work if you use raw pumpkin. But I only had fresh mashed pumpkin. I couldn't waste it so I just put it in anyways and cheese-clothed-out the liquid. Throw away the ginger and cinnamon sticks. In a large bowl, mash the sweet potatoes and pumpkin. Pinch in the nutmeg and salt. Taste. At this point I found that my chopped onions and garlic were huge pieces so it all went in the food processor for some pureed mashed potatoes. Season more, if necessary. Splash in a bit of the cooking liquid and stir, for an even texture. Before serving, sprinkle with the chives. Serves 6 or more.

Felt mostly like a failure but, I worked with what I had. I just couldn't bring myself to not use the fresh pumpkin from Gramma's garden. They tasted great-nice and spicy-not sweet like the brown sugar yams.

Back to the O.C.

Jackie and I hiked down into old town Oregon City on Tuesday-as we were trapped by the snow. We had a couple close calls but, never ate ice on our way. It was very odd to be back and walking where we had in 7th grade.

The view from the Barker Bluff.

The Oregon City Falls that are 'really falling' meaning there's a lot of water.

By the time we got to the bottom, we were cold!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Allergy-Free Product Review #4

Amy's new gluten free, dairy free rice macaroni with dairy free (daiya) cheese! It was FANTASTIC and incredibly satisfying. I couldn't believe it. Although I don't eat much frozen, processed food, I had to try it because it was a GFDF product. It was very exciting. High recommended 5/5 stars!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

GFEFDF Postickers!

I will say I was very nervous about this. About half way through doing it, I was insistent that it was an instant failure. Only to be proven wrong! They turned out fantastic! I served them to Mom, Rich and Ivan. Ivan even 'forgot' that they were actually allergy-free and all reported they tasted great! The wrappers were doughy when cooked, more bread-y than noodle-y. The filling was very tasty. Next time I won't forget the garlic!

Filling ingredients:
-Napa cabbage, chopped
-Green onion, chopped
-Mushroom, chopped
-Water chestnuts, chopped
-Carrot, chopped
-Ginger root, minced (I use a zester)
-1 Tbs Bragg's Amino 'soy' sauce-Normal soy sauce has wheat in it
-White pepper (desired amount)
-1/2 lb. ground pork sausage

Wrappers. It was very tricky to these make gluten-free and egg-free. I used a recipe from another blog called Li Loved David. It worked great! I of course have a hard time following it and should have done a better job. As I have issues with this I recommend using the original recipe if you attempt it.

2 cups brown rice flour
2 tsp. xanthum gum
pinch of salt
3/4 cup hot water

I did not roll it out prior to letting it sit. It was a bit flaky and falling apart. Rolling out and then letting it sit makes sense. I wish I had a mini-rolling pin, it's pretty tough dough and needs some elbow grease. I also had issues with sticky dough so I used wax paper via Momma's suggestion. My coffee cup rolling pin was sufficient enough.

They didn't take long to fry up-even the meat one's were cooked all the way through. Ran out of wrappers because they were so thick and just threw the leftover filling in the frying pan. Yum yum yum.

This recipe was tried out with the Book of Yum adopt a blog post in mind.

My talented goddaughter... and I...

So Debra plays the alto sax, the flute, and the bassoon! Super cool. I pretended to make a sound out of the flute and failed-never been my thing. The bassoon was super cool, I had never really seen or held one. It's like a giant oboe/clarinet. I did play the clarinet so it was fun to give it a go. She taught me a scale which is as far as I got. It's much more complicated than a clarinet. It was exciting to hear her play. Thanks for sharing Debra!

Go Deb!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lake Tahoe Nevadadventure!

Yes! I was fortunate to be taken on a Nevadadventure (coined by Rift). We went to Lake Tahoe during my time in Reno and of course it was beautiful! Some interesting information: Lake Tahoe is largest alpine lake in North America. The maximum depth is 1,645 ft. The maximum elevation is 6,229 ft. Lake Tahoe's water is 99.9% pure. The water is so clear that a 10 inch white dinner plate would be visible at 78 feet below the surface. There are also five 24-hour casinos in South Lake Tahoe. Important information. :)

My goddaughter/cousin Debra and I!

Twisted tree over the lake.

Mountains behind the lake.

Some very dedicated, crazy jet skiers, it was probably about 45 degrees for the high.

Our mini-snowman.

Eagle Falls.

Here's Uncle Leo.

A great shot, lots of snow!