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The Girl and Her Pizza

18 Nov

Once upon a time there was a girl who recently went on a gluten free diet. This girl LOVED all things wheat, especially pizza. She used to make pizza by scratch at least once a week. She was sad to learn that she couldn’t make it as she was used it. So this girl went to the store and found a gluten free pizza crust mix (made by some one who rhymes with Rob’s Bed Hill) – she was beyond excited and couldn’t wait to try it out. So that night she made this crust. She baked it. She put toppings on it, and took the first bite AND… it was awful. Seriously bad. Like had to drink a lot water and put extra cheese on it and use a spoon bad.  She even cried over this pizza, and started to picture her future without pizza. It was very very sad.

Then one day, about two weeks later she read a gluten free cook book that promised good, crispy pizza crust. She was hesitant. Yet, she tried it. She mixed and waited, baked and put toppings on it. Then she took her slice, took a bite… AND IT WAS GOOD! She was exuberant! She cried happy tears. Pizza was back in her life to stay!

And they lived happily ever after….THE END!

Ok that was a little bit dramatic, but very true. 🙂

The thing I love about pizza crust is the the fluffy inside and the crispy outside. Mmmmmh, its amazing. You see, gluten helps make bread stretchy and fluffy – and amazing. Take that out, and you are left with very dense, thin, odd tasting crusts – like the one for “Rob’s Bed Hill”. I just got this cookbook called Cooking For Isaiah. The author, Silvana Nardone, is the Editor of Rachel Ray’s cookbooks and owns a bakery. So she knows what she is doing.

So for my Gluten Free Friday, I am sharing with you this great gluten free pizza dough recipe.

The Perfect Gluten Free Pizza Crust

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups Silvana’s All-Purpose Flour (See below)- ((Or if you are eating gluten, use regular flour))
  • 1 Package active  dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt (or less, I thought it was too salty for my taste)
  • 2 large eggs white, slightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1. In large bowl whisk together the flour, yeast, sugar and salt. Add the egg whites, olive oil, and water. Using a wooden spoon, beat until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

2. Divide the dough into two pizzas. Using floured wax paper or parchment paper roll with a pin or finger tips into 1/4in thick circles. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 30 minutes.

3. Using a baking stone (or pizza pan) – slide each piece of dough into a 450 degree oven for 8 minutes. The bottom should be puffy and crisp.

4. Then add your toppings, and bake again for 6 to 8 minutes. ENJOY!

Silvana’s All Purpose Flour (Gluten Free)

  • 6 cups white rice flour
  • 3 cups tapioca flour
  • 1 1/2 cups potato starch
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons xanthum gum

Mix all ingredient in an air tight container. Shake until well mixed. Makes about 4 pounds of gluten free flour that can be used for anything you are baking (AND ITS AWESOME!).

P.s. I just saw this recipe for a Cauliflower Pizza Crust. Has anyone tried anything like that? It sounds interesting.

Garlic Shrimp & Spinach Pasta

11 Nov

G-Free Fridays JPEG Webiste

Boy do I have a good one for you all today! This meal was amazing. I used brown rice noodles, and (dare I say it) it was even better then whole wheat noodles, and more filling! So glad I made this twice this week!

Pasta1

All you need is

  • Big handful (or 2) of spinach (chopped)
  • 6 oz of brown rice pasta
  • Half of bell pepper (red looks cooler for this meal), Chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic (or three cloves chopped)
  • 1/2 lb shrimp, pealed (cooked or uncooked)

1. Cook brown rice pasta according to directions. Drain, set aside.

2. Chop up the ingredients

Pasta2

3. Put uncooked shrimp and peppers with butter and garlic in a pan (or if using cooked shrimp, put in once peppers are soft – about 5 minutes) sauté until shrimp is pink and peppers are soft.

Pasta3

Pasta4

4. Add cooked pasta and chopped spinach. Stir until spinach is wilted and soft (less than 2 minutes!).

Pasta5

Then enjoy this meal! It was amazing!! I’ll be making this a staple in our house!

Pasta 6

As far as this week goes I have not had any gluten! YAY! I am getting a little bit sick of rice (we have it at almost every meal) – but thankfully rice pasta is really good and potatoes are always an option too. Thanks for all the encouragement throughout the week.

This next week I am attempting Gluten-Free Lasagna…… Oh yeah! Tune in next Friday to check that out.

For more of my favorite recipes (both gluten-free and gluten-full), check out my FOOD page!

Gluten-Free Goddess: Lime Chicken Tacos

4 Nov

One week down! Kinda….

This week went pretty well for gluten free! I ended up getting a stomach bug that knocked me off my game for two whole days, and then when I was ready to eat the only thing I could imagine putting in my mouth was hot wonton soup. So I caved and got wonton soup. But that was my only gluten indulgence for November… so far!

This past week I made these amazing Lime Chicken Tacos. Try them!

(I forgot to take a picture opps)

Lime Chicken Tacos Recipe

“I like to marinate the chicken overnight. But if you only have an hour or two- go for it. Marinate, kick back and sip a margarita with someone you love.
For the marinade:
4 split organic free-range chicken breasts (boneless saves time)
4 cloves of fresh garlic, chopped
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons agave
A pinch of cumin, to taste- or some chopped cilantro, if you like
Fresh ground pepper
For the taco fixin’s:
4 vine-ripe tomatoes, chopped
2 cups shredded Romaine lettuce
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar, Jack or dairy-free cheese
8-10 fresh and soft white corn tortillas (Mission are gluten-free)
3-4 fresh limes cut into wedges
Rinse the chicken briefly in cold water and pat dry. Place in a shallow glass or non-reactive dish.
In a small bowl combine the garlic, lime juice, olive oil, agave, cumin and fresh ground pepper. Pour the marinade over and under the chicken breasts. Cover tightly and marinate for at least an hour; overnight is even better.
When the grill is hot, remove the chicken from the dish and discard the marinade.
Grill the chicken over medium-high heat until it is cooked through and is no longer pink inside- about 12 to 15 minutes.
Assemble and ready your remaining taco fixin’s.
Place the cooked chicken on a clean cutting board and slice thin.
Serve your tacos at a room temperature, if pliable and very fresh; or heat them gently. Here’s what I do.
In a clean skillet or griddle, heat a scant amount of olive oil and briefly heat the white corn tortillas one or two at a time, coating them with just a scant amount of oil to soften them; remove to a tortilla warmer lined with a clean, warm towel.
Have everyone assemble their own tacos.
Serves 4.”
Thanks Karina for this great food, and great website!

Going Gluten Free

28 Oct

For a while now I have had psoriasis (an autoimmune disease, not contagious – read the literature!). A condition where my skin over produces cells creating “flakes” on some areas of my body. Over the past year, I also have developed Psoriasis Arthritis, common in 70% of people with psoriasis. Arthritis makes everyday hard, even getting out of bed to walking. This is something I have had now for ten years.

Recently there have been studies showing positive results between eating a gluten free diet and the condition of autoimmune disease.  So I am going to bite the bullet – the gluten free bread – and attempt to try going gluten free. This won’t be an easy task for a bread-pasta-and-all-things-wheat-lover like me. But if it will clear up my psoriasis and help my joint pain, I am willing to give it a try. Starting November 1st, 2011 until January 1st, 2012. (If it works then I’ll do it longer!).

To motivate myself and encourage others who are eating gluten free or wondering about trying it, I am starting a Gluten Free Fridays here on my blog. A place to share amazing recipes that are gluten free, and warn others what not to try. 🙂

Join me next week as I attempt this Gluten Free diet for the next two months!

Today was spent getting rid of all my beloved gluten – goodbye pasta, flour, cake mix and crackers (and tomato soup!)!

 

Crab-y Bisque

14 Sep

Its been a while sine I have shared a recipe with y’all. So here it is, an AMAZING Crab Bisque. Warning, this is not at all healthy, but it is so amazing and so rich. I couldn’t even finish a cup of it for dinner last night, that’s how rich it is! Enjoy!

Crab Bisque

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 (1.25 ounce) envelope hollandaise sauce mix
  • 4 cups half-and-half, divided
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning TM
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon cooking sherry
  • 1 pound fresh crabmeat (or 1/2 lb, depending on how crab-y you like your bisque!)

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, blend flour and hollandaise sauce mix with 2 cups half-and-half.
  2. Melt butter in a medium, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Slowly add hollandaise mixture, stirring constantly until thickened. Add remaining half-and-half, Old Bay, dry mustard, celery seed, and whipping cream. Bring to a simmer and reduce heat to low. Add crabmeat and sherry, stirring gently until warmed through. Serve immediately.

Taken from Karyn’s Cream of Crab Soup Recipe

Pasta Sauce III – Canning

3 Aug

Last week I finally had enough tomatoes to make Pasta Sauce again. This time I used 30 tomatoes, mostly Roma – which are known to make great sauce and are meatier than other tomatoes. And it worked.

After dinner, I had enough to fill three quart jars. So over the weekend, I got a chance to try out my canning gear I have had since the fall. I used the process from pickyourown.org. 

Here are some of my pictures from the process:

Getting everything sanitized and ready for the sauce

And they are in.....

All Done!

I can’t wait to use them in the coming month. To see the recipe click here, and to see how amazing it looks as dinner check out this post.

Blackberry Ice Cream

28 Jul

There is a local fruit stand less than a mile from my house, and they have not only great food but great prices. This last week I splurged and got a quart of Blackberries for the Hubby for only $4.50.  He couldn’t eat them fast enough and they were so ripe, they melted the minute you put them into your mouth.

So we decided to make some ice cream from them. We chose the classic Pioneer Woman’s Blackberry Ice Cream recipe, and it was AMAZING!

Ingredients

  • 2 pints Fresh Blackberries
  • 1/2 whole Juiced Lemon
  • 1/4 cup Sugar
  • 1-1/2 cup Half-and-half
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 5 whole Egg Yolks
  • 1-1/2 cup Heavy Cream

Preparation Instructions

Add blackberries to a medium saucepan with 1/4 cup sugar and lemon juice. Cook over low heat, covered, for 20 to 25 minutes. Drain using a fine mesh strainer, pressing berries to extract as much juice/puree as possible. Set aside.

Heat half-and-half and 1 cup sugar in a separate saucepan over low heat. Turn off heat when mixture is totally heated.

Beat egg yolks by hand or with an electric mixer until yolks are pale yellow and slightly thick. Temper the egg yolks by slowly drizzling into the 1 1/2 cups of hot half-and-half mixture, whisking constantly. After that, pour the egg yolk/half-and-half mixture into the pan containing the rest of the half-and-half mixture. Cook over low to medium-low heat (depending on how hot your stove gets) until quite thick, stirring constantly.

Add heavy cream to a separate bowl. Drain custard using a fine mesh strainer, then pour into the bowl with the heavy cream. Stir to combine. Add blackberry juice/puree to the cream/custard mixture and stir.

Chill mixture completely, then freeze in an ice cream maker until thick. Place container in freezer to harden for an additional two hours.

Evil variation: Stir in semi-sweet chocolate chunks before freezing. Delicious! * RECOMMENDED!*

Here are some pictures from the process:

Homemade Blackberry Ice Cream

Mixing the Custard and the Juice

After 30 min in the ice cream maker 🙂

And then after a night in the freezer and added chocolate chips, there is this AMAZING creation (and I don’t really like blackberries, but I LOVED this!):

Yummm!