Monday, December 13, 2010

Gluten Free Egg Free Raisin Cranberry cookies

I just made this up last minute when I discovered there were no chocolate chips in my pantry.  It's a Tollhouse like recipe with walnuts, and a great texture similar to oatmeal.  It does not have eggs, which is great!  So this recipe is Gluten free, dairy free, soy free, egg free, peanut free, and corn free.

Gluten Free Raisin Cranberry Cookies

2 cups GF flour mix (I mixed my own using rice flour, tapioca flour, potato starch, xanthan gum Refer to Bette Hagman's mix or another similar one)
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. GF baking powder (Hain Baking Powder is also corn free!)
1/4 t. salt
3/4 c. brown sugar
3/4 c. white gran. sugar
1 cup Spectrum's Organic Shortening (or 1/2 c. butter/margarine and 1/2 c. shortening)
2 "eggs" worth in Faux Eggs (refer to recipe on the blog)
1 t. GF vanilla extract (Flavorganics, Frontier, Trader Joe's alcohol free, or Simply Organic brands to name a few)
1/2 c. raisins
1/2 c. dried cranberries
1/2 c. medium to finely chopped walnuts (kids don't know there in there!)

Like I said, I made these very last minute.  Sometimes when making cookies, I throw everything in a bowl and whirl it around with electric beaters for a couple minutes.  That definitely worked with these cookies! Beat on low for around 2 minutes or until everything is well combined.  Use a one ounce ice cream scoop to spoon out the dough onto cookie sheets.  I put two full cookie sheets in my oven and rotate them half way through.  So I baked them at 350 for 8-9 minutes, rotate the trays, and move top tray to bottom, bottom tray to top.  Then bake for another 8 minutes roughly.  Watch them closely the last couple minutes as ovens may vary.  Enjoy with cinnamon coffee!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

More experimenting

I have been experimenting with those Faux Eggs recently and discovered that they are pretty useful in a lot of things!  Last night we made salmon cakes, and I substituted the eggs.  They came out lighter, fluffier, and very delicate like a perfect flaky Maryland crabcake; only salmon.  I'll have to post that recipe next time I make it.  I also used it in a GF bread mix this week.  They always call for eggs, and I wasn't sure about the swap at first, but the bread came out perfect.  It didn't affect the texture at all.  I also made them in waffles last week.  The only thing I wouldn't do with these "eggs" is fry them for breakfast.  :)

Portobello Club Sandwich on Udi's Bread

I just made the best sandwich and I thought I'd share it with you.  It is not allergen friendly though.  I decided to cheat on this one.  It's made on Udi's bread which contains eggs.  You can substitute an eggless bread if you like.  This sandwich also had canola mayo in it, but you can substitute Veganaise or another appropriate spread if you're on an egg-free diet.  

3 slices of GF bread untoasted like Udi's
2 portobello mushrooms, stems removed
roasted red peppers, jarred
a handful of arugula
sliced tomato
2 T. Italian dressing like Annie's Tuscany Italian
2 T. appropriate mayo
1/2 tsp. jarred chopped garlic
a dash of cayenne pepper
a dash of salt

Combine the mushroom caps with the Italian dressing.  Heat a little olive oil in a saute pan and cook the mushrooms for around 3 to 5 minutes on each side.  Meanwhile, combine the mayo with the chopped garlic, cayenne, and salt.  Really the longer you let it marinate, the better it tastes.  But I did it last minute and it was still good.  Spread the mayo over the 3 slices of bread.  My roasted red peppers came out whole, so I sliced them.  Arrange the slices on top of the mayo on one slice.  Then add one mushroom cap.  Then add a handful of arugula, then the sliced tomato.  Top with another slice of bread, mayo side up, and repeat the process, topping with the last slice of bread, mayo side down.  Easy enough, right? Enjoy alone in an empty room and lick all the juices off your fingers.  I sent all the kids upstairs so I could enjoy this one in solace.  Yah, it was that good.  (Maybe it's also because I haven't had a sandwich in a really long time.)

This sandwich was gluten free, dairy free, soy free, and nut free

Friday, December 10, 2010

Faceless Friday! It's vegan chili tonight!

I guess its like Meatless Monday.  I should start a Beany Wednesday, and Salad Saturday.  A friend of mine on Facebook said she was making veggie chili and it just got me craving it!  So I made a version of one, but I didn't take pictures this time.  It came out so good! Perfect for a snowy night.  Bisquick has a gluten free baking mix now, just make some biscuits to go with this.  If you tolerate corn, cornbread is ideal with this.  I'll try to share what I did.  I always use dried beans and soak them at least 4 hours or overnight.

Vegan Chili

3/4 c. kidney beans (all beans measured before soaking)
3/4 c. white northern beans
3/4 c. pinto, pink, cranberry, roman, or something else beans
3/4 cup black beans
1 c. brown lentils (I don't bother soaking these)
3 c. froz. cut green beans
1 lg. onion diced
2 ribs celery diced
2 carrots diced
1 green bell pepper diced
1 pkg. mushrooms finely chopped with a food chopper or food processor. 
4-5 cloves of garlic finely chopped
1 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
3 T. red chili powder
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. oregano
1 bay leaf
1 T. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
Olive oil for sauteing

In the bottom of a heavy stockpot, drizzle a few T. of olive oil in the pan and heat.  Add the onion, celery, and carrot and saute for a few minutes.  Add the bell pepper, mushroom, and garlic and saute a few minutes more.  Add all the soaked beans (discard the soaking water) and 3 quarts of fresh water (That's a really rough estimate. I was eyeballing it.)  Add the can of crushed tomatoes and the herbs and spices.  Stir occasionally and simmer for an hour, then add the lentils and cook for around an hour more, or until the beans are done.  You may have to add water during the cooking time.  That's what I had to do.  Adjust the seasonings before serving. Serve with any appropriate toppings like non-dairy sour cream, or goat cheese, or veggie shreds, etc. 

*Note:  Baking soda is a great trick for softening the beans.  Add 1/2 t. to your pot when you add your beans, this will shorten the cooking time a little, and make them melt in your mouth!  Once you've had homemade beans, there's no going back to canned!  Don't add too much baking soda or it will foam up too much and taste weird.

**Another Note: Substitute your favorite beans.  Chickpeas are great in this, any combination works.  I usually keep the kidney beans because they seem so perfect for chili.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Tomato Rice Soup

Have you ever looked into your bare refrigerator and skimpy pantry and wondered what am I supposed to make with what I have?  I've got plenty of Nothing in my pantry.  And on top of it all, it's probably too cold, windy, rainy, or snowy to venture outside and get something to eat (assuming you could eat out), or go to the store for more ingredients.  Well, lately that happens to us a lot.  My asthma keeps me from venturing too far at the moment, and now that I'm not touching eggs or corn, I find myself looking at my kitchen wondering, "What the heck am I supposed to eat!"  With the weather like it is, I'm craving soup. This soup solves it all.  With creamy soups out of the picture, we always have canned tomatoes on hand.  And being gluten free, we always have rice on hand.  Celery, onions, and garlic are always on hand as well.  Voila!  Tomato rice soup!  Made out of almost nothing, but so perfect with a peice of homemade GF bread.  Did I mention this soup is beyond easy to make?

Tomato Rice Soup

1 Large can of whole peeled tomatoes (28 oz.)
3 ribs of celery diced
1 large onion diced
3-4 cloves of garlic smashed and chopped
1/2 cup white or brown rice, raw
1 T. sea salt
1/4 to 1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. dried basil
any appropriate vegetable oil

Drizzle a couple tablespoons of cooking oil in the bottom of your soup pot, and sautee your onions, celery, and garlic for about 5 minutes.  Add your canned tomatoes, breaking them up with your spoon.  Next add two full cans of water using the same 28 oz. tomato can.  Then add your rice and seasonings, and stir.  Let this simmer for 30 to 45 minutes depending on what rice you use.  Brown rice will take longer and will be closer to 45 minutes to cook.   Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Faux Eggs

I just got allergy tested recently and discovered that I'm very allergic to corn and eggs, in addition to wheat, dairy, and soy.  But corn and eggs were the highest on the scale there, so I need to eliminate those.  I came across this egg substitute in one of my vegan cookbooks, and I thought I would share it.  It's great for baking.  Today I made blueberry muffins using these "eggs" and they came out wonderful. Here it goes:

Faux Eggs

1/3 cup flax seeds
1 cup water

Blend the flax seeds in a blender or food processor to an even meal.  While the machine is still running, slowly add the water.  Blend another 30 seconds or so till the mixture resembles a thick milkshake.  You can store this in the fridge for 3 to 6 days.  I think 1/4 cup equals one egg.  This recipe supposedly makes the equivalent of 6 eggs. 

I think I'll try this in my pancakes tomorrow too!

Vegan, Gluten Free Lentil Stew

It's Meatless Monday!

My friend started doing Meatless Mondays on her blog, and I thought I'd start doing it too, since we eat meatless about 3 to 4 times a week.  So tonight I made lentil stew.  Lentils are a staple in our house, and this comforting bowl of stew is so inviting.  Not only my kids love it, but friends & relatives love it too.  It's thick, hearty, full of flavor, and full of "Love", as my daughter would say it.   Try it just to say you had a bowl of "Love". Seriously, that kid cracks me up. 

Lentil Stew

1 lb. French lentils (or Brown  lentils, but the cooking time will be shorter)
1 onion, diced
2 carrots sliced
2-3 ribs of celery sliced
8-10 oz. of mushrooms sliced
3 cups chopped kale, packed as good as you can
2 med. potatoes large diced
2 bouillon cubes, vegan and GF like Rapunzel brand
1 T. sea salt (use to your liking)
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 Tsp. dried herbs of your choice (I used Italian Seasonings years ago till I discovered Herbs de Provence. Tonight I'm using a blend from Germany that my brother brought me.  It has dill and curry in it. Strange combination, but wonderful on veggies!) 

Sautee the the onions, carrots, & celery in olive oil in a 5 qt. soup pot for 5-7 minutes.

Meanwhile sort and wash your lentils to remove any pebbles or dirt clods from the beans.  Add the lentils, mushrooms, kale and potatoes.  Then add 3 quarts of water (12 cups).

This is when I add the salt and pepper and herbs to the stew.  Bring the stew to a simmer and cook for around 2 hours depending on your lentils, the elevation, and whatever other factors that could affect cooking.  When the lentils melt in your mouth, it's done! Serve with your favorite GF crackers or add a dollop of short grain brown rice to the bottom of your bowl and ladle the soup on top.  That's what we did!    

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Gluten Free, Casein Free Cereal Bars!

Two new bar recipes that the kids and adults love! Try them out.

I got this one from Ellie Krieger on Food Network, but I modified it for our needs.

Crispy Rice Treats

1/2 cup honey or sometimes I use agave or brown rice syrup
1/2 cup natural nut butter of choice. I use cashew butter
6 cups crispy brown rice cereal, GF of course
2/3 cup chopped dried cherries (3 ounces)
Cooking spray, or grease your 13x9 with oil, butter, or something else

Melt the nut butter and honey in a pan over med. heat. When it's smooth and well combined, add the cereal and cherries. Stir to combine and press into your greased pan. This recipe is a little crumbly, but it's healthy. If you want to junk it up, add some marshmallows to your nut butter mixture and melt those in for an extra gooey treat! Just make sure your marshmallows are gluten free.

Nut Butter Chocolate Bars

6 cups GF cheerios-like cereal. (Glutino Honey Nut O's or Nature's Path Whole O's in the health section of the store)

1 1/2 cups GF marshmallows (cram them into the measuring cup any way you can, or just eye-ball it like I do.)

1 cup nut butter (I use almond or cashew butter)

3/4 cup brown rice syrup (you could try agave or something else. Original recipe said corn syrup, but I have a problem with that)

3 T. butter (I clarify mine, or use Ghee) or non-dairy alternative

1 cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips. These are allergen friendly.

1 tsp. Spectrum organic shortening (for the chocolate)

Grease your 13x9 pan with an appropriate fat like butter or Spectrum shortening, or cooking spray. Measure cereal in a large bowl and set aside. Melt your nut butter, butter or shortening, brown rice syrup, and marshmallows in a pan on low heat, stirring occasionally until smooth. Pour over cereal stirring until evenly coated. Press into 13x9 pan using a spatula. In another pan or double boiler, melt the chocolate with the 1 tsp. shortening stirring constantly as to not make fudge. This happens really easily with this chocolate. As soon as it's almost melted, turn off heat, and continue to stir until smooth. Immediately drizzle (or glop) on the chocolate over the bars, trying to spread it out over all the cereal mixture. Cool before cutting into squares. Enjoy!

These bars are Gluten free, dairy free, soy free, egg free, and peanut free

Gluten Free, Casein Free Curried Butternut Squash Soup

Now that it's colder here in upstate NY, soups are perfect comfort food. I just made this one last night, and it was a hit. Even the baby ate it, despite the spiciness of the soup! I don't have pictures of the process this time, but go ahead and try it. It's a good way to use up that huge butternut squash collecting dust in the pantry. Enjoy!

Curried Butternut Squash Soup

4 cups cooked butternut squash, packed; usually one large squash (I split it in half, seed it, and bake it cut side down in the oven for an hour at 400 degrees. Can be done a day before.)

5 cups water

1 large onion diced

3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped and/or 1-2 shallots chopped

1 T. fresh grated ginger

1 heaping tsp. curry powder

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

2 tsp. salt (adjust to your liking)

dashes of white pepper (optional)

2 T. Agave nectar or honey

1 can of coconut milk (mine was 13 1/2 ounces)

Heat some olive oil, or other suitable vegetable oil in a 5 qt. pot and add the onion and garlic, and/or shallots. Sautee for 5 to 7 minutes. Add the ginger and spices and sautee for one minute more. Add your cooked squash and water. Simmer for 20 minutes or until all the veggies are soft. I use a hand blender right in the pot and puree the ingredients till smooth. You can put this mixture in the blender in batches and puree till smooth. Use caution not to fill the blender more than half full or it could cause the top to blow off and cause you burns! Add puree back to the pot and add the coconut milk and agave syrup, or honey and gently heat through taking care not to boil. Serve with a big, baby greens salad and a GF baguette! (I use a bread mix that's both pizza dough and french bread. I think the brand is Gluten Free Pantry.) Let me know what you think!

This recipe is gluten free, dairy free, soy free, corn free, egg free, and nut free (if you don't consider coconut a nut)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Summer 2010

So as you can see, I haven't posted anything in over a year. I've been a little busy with baby #4, Loic. I do plan to get back into this, and post more recipes that are vegan, and even raw, as I'm experimenting with that now. The kids aren't too keen on raw yet, but they are ok with some things. The goal is to make everything fun. Like smoothies for breakfast, sliced apples & cashew butter as a dip for snacks, and huge salads for dinner. Lately I hate cooking, not only because I don't have time, but who wants to heat up the kitchen in summer? Our vegetable garden is flourishing right now. So we've been eating salads consisting of 3 different spring green type lettuces, julienned zucchini and yellow squash, sliced radishes, fresh raw peas, grape tomatoes, bell peppers, broccoli, and whatever we find in the pantry like pumpkin seeds, gomashio, sunflower seeds, etc. We still eat fish and poultry every once in a while, but I only buy local. I found out that most ground turkey and whole turkeys are not only injected with chemical broth solutions, but they have added extracts as well. And forget turkey sausage, my son has reactions to that too. The Gansevoort farmer's market has been wonderful for us. I buy my local poultry at one stand, and goat milk and cheese at another, and gluten free baked goods at another. But as I mentioned earlier, I want to learn all I can about raw food right now. I know I feel best when I eat that way. My digestive issues have been getting worse, so I can't pretend they don't exist anymore. I've been stricter to this dairy free, gluten free, soy free diet. I hope to get off sugar and eggs as well. So I'll be experimenting in the kitchen and posting more recipes soon!

Note: One thing I discovered recently was So Delicious coconut milk ice cream and coffee creamer! They are excellent substitutes for the dairy based and soy based ones. I even like the coconut milk on cereal. Yay! for So Delicious! Until next time...