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4.15.2014

G-F White Chocolate Cheesecake

Here is the creamy, delicious, "the best cheesecake I've eaten in a while" recipe.  NOTE:  There was no caveat, "The best G-F..."  It's the BEST of any!

Preheat 350  and procure a 10 inch springform pan with a cookie crust.  My crust is a whole other failed almond/apricot cookie fiasco, but failures makes great cookie crumbs!

Blend slowly

  • 4 eight oz packages of cream cheese (I used neufachel--1/3 fat)
  • 1/2 cup and 2 Tablespoons sugar  


When blended well, add

  • 4 eggs (room temperature--and blended up)
  • 1 tablespoons flour (I used my healthier g-f mix)
  • 8 oz. white chocolate (melted  carefully in microwave--stirring often) I mixed the other ingredients slowly into the chocolate to help keep it from seizing.
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


AND

  • 1/2 cup sour cream (I used light)


Woops!  I forgot that last ingredient when I wrote this out for the party goers yesterday.

 I mixed it all up, poured it into a ten inch springform with a cookie crust pressed into the bottom and then baked it in the oven, above a water bath (cakepan with 2 inches hot water) for about 45 minutes.  Smaller pan, longer time.

Perfect cheesecake tips:

  •  Leave it in the oven to cool and turn it off.  Cool about an hour then finish cooling outside oven and refrigerate until serving.  
  • If you run a knife around the edge after the bake time, it might help keep it from cracking.  I forgot, but it only cracked a little.  (Legend says the  crack is essential because that's where all the calories flow out.) 


Last night, the party began with roasted tomato basil hummus, and OK cavier, served with chips, veggies, and crackers, then we dipped goat-cheese strawberries in balsamic vinegar.

We ate grilled lemon chicken, quinoa tuna salad, OK baked beans, pepperjack mashed cauliflower and finished it all with the piece de resistance, g-f white chocolate cheesecake.  The family brought bacon-wrapped, cream cheese stuffed jalapeno peppers and we feasted.

Delicious all, and I'll be days finishing the leftovers!

Uggghhhh, I'm full.


3.29.2014

Tuna Quinoa Spinach Salad

G-F Pantry Spring cleaning!  

It's time!  The once-a-year clean, fling, and installation of new freezer paper lining in the pantries.  Feels So Good!

Spring beckons the salad season and the depths of the pantry unearth many intriguing options for salad, quinoa, craisins, almonds, tuna?I can't wait for the newest sampling.  

 (I could have taken before and after photos of cleaning but that would have been mortifying--no one should have evidence of how badly winter corrupts the closets.  

When I cook, I try to shop from the pantry--keeping at least one extra bottle of whatever shelf staple available in my storage, but I'm also a winter ingredient collector so I look forward to finding recipes for  smoked paprika, ghee, chinese five spice, sorghum molasses, pickled beets, coconut milk powder, hot curry powder, hoisen, miso, pickled ginger, pho spice, YUM!   
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Last posted 5-19-11  


Tuna Quinoa Spinach Salad

DANG! I FORGOT TO TAKE PICTURES! TRUST ME! This one was delicious!!! I'll make it again sometime and take photos.              (Here they are!  See?  I DiD It!)

This salad came together so quickly and deliciously. I use so many teaspoons when I cook because I'm always snatching one up to taste as I go. Sometimes, if the dish is really good, there is not much of it left at the end.

I used cooked quinoa in this one. Most quinoa is sold in America already debittered so we don't have to rinse the bitter coating off before cooking. I tossed two cups in the rice cooker with two cups water and clicked the on button. It is done in a flash while I'm putting together the rest of the salad. I mix it all up and dress the salad while the quinoa is still warm so it can fully absorb the dressing flavors. (This was Mom's secret for the best potato salad on the planet.)

2 cans tuna drained
2 cups cooked quinoa  (1 cup uncooked)
1 cup sliced almonds 
1 lb. baby spinach (sliced)
1 cup craisins
2 cups apples diced and splashed with
2 tsps. lemon juice

I mix up the dressing as follows:

3/4 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup sweet pickle relish
1/2 cup onion (mild and diced)
1/2 tsp salt

Eat it warm, or cool a couple hours or overnight and serve with crusty bread. Then take it to a ladies Mix-n-mingle and everyone will love it and ask for the recipe and you will get your 15 minutes of fame. Voila!


It's worth a try right?

3.25.2014

G-F Gums: Info to Chew Over

Guar, Xanthan, Psyllium, Chia, Flax   Which do I use as baking additives and which should I avoid?

Here are some links to help you decide.  http://chriskresser.com/harmful-or-harmless-guar-gum-locust-bean-gum-and-more.

Psyllium is classified as a drug no food on WebMd.  (weird-go figure) http://www.webmd.com/drugs/drug-56088-Psyllium+Husk+Fibre+Oral.aspx?drugid=56088
http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-psyllium-husk.html

3.12.2014

GF Gougères

A gougère, in French cuisine, is a baked savory choux pastry made of choux dough. There are many variants: add some sugar and they're cream puffs, add some cheese and they're ...um, cheese puffs.

In GF cuisine, it's an impossibly easy single flour win that's gonna ruin your calorie count for the next fifteen years. STILL DO IT.  I made them plain and ate them filled with tuna while standing over the pan. I had to hide them from myself to keep some for hubby and some for a friend! 

So simple it's magnifique: 

Melt together 1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
1 cup water
1 tsp salt in a pot.
When it's boiling, turn off the heat and add one cup rice flour all at once.
Stir it together with a big wooden spoon (or something else strong), then add one egg at a time, stirring between eggs, until the batter is doughy but not runny (usually about three eggs). 
Plop onto a cookie sheet (metal, not glass) and cook them in a hot, hot oven (425*) for 20 minutes. Turn the oven down to 350* and cook for 5 more minutes.

Time: 30 minutes.
Makes: not enough.

3.04.2014

Outback in Provo Restaurant Review


Pictures speak for themselves. The only thing I need to add is that I didn't get sick!

We feasted on steak, shrimp, veggies, Alice's chicken, potatoes, sweet potato and even a delectable no-flour brownie monstrosity with two huge scoops of ice cream on top -->

Wouldn't it be nice if the GF menu had prices, though?

Also watch for malt vinegar in the BBQ sauces they bring to the table (our lovely server warned us because her sister's GF!).

Joe's in Provo Restaurant Review




Joe's is owned by a REAL FOODIE. 

He (Joe) will go above and beyond (as long as you call ahead) and buy GF buns and heat up an alternate fryer (with brand new oil) so that you can have the ultimate burger experience at his restaurant. 

He asked about each ingredient and even remade the sauce when I googled "malt vinegar" and realized I couldn't have it. What a GEM! 

Oh, and you've never had burgers like this. Grass fed beef, all real ingredients, cooked up to perfection to order and overflowing with deliciousness. 

In south Provo; good group date or activity location with pool and game tables in the back.

490 N. Freedom Blvd.
801-607-1201

Black Bean Chocolate Brownies

http://www.inspirededibles.ca/2014/01/flourless-black-bean-chocolate-chili.html

I didn't use the chilies and adapted as ingredients needed. Found it too bitter so I piled white almond bark and sprinkles on top, mmmm.

3.03.2014

What Cooking Means

"How to announce the return of comfort and well-being except by cooking something fragrant. That is what her mother always did. After every calamity of any significance she would fill the atmosphere of the house with the smell of cinnamon rolls or brownies, or with chicken and dumplings, and it would mean, This house has a soul that loves us all, no matter what. It would mean peace if they had fought and amnesty if they had been in trouble. It had meant, You can come down to dinner now, and no one will say a thing to bother you, unless you have forgotten to wash your hands. And her father would offer the grace, inevitable with minor variations, thanking the Lord for all the wonderful faces he saw around his table."

Marilynne Robinson, Home

3.01.2014

G-F Caramel Turtle Pie

 PI month   3.14    It's Pie Month All Month, not just one day!   Celebrate and Eat Pie!  

reposted from 11-2011

Thanksgiving Pie! I'm headed to another party--this one with new neighbors who think celebrating with pie on Thanksgiving is not gratitude enough. My kind of people!

Baked a g-f crust, layered in chocolate ganache, filled it with Grandma's vanilla pie filling and then topped it all with whipped cream, toasted pecans, caramel and more chocolate.

I hope it tastes as delicious as it looks. If so, I promise to find time tomorrow to post the recipe.



It was the belle of the pie ball. And I had to sneak a piece home for the photograph.

Reality Bite: I've got to remember to take my camera to these events--not for the people, but for the desserts! (Gonna be Awkward.)

I lined it with 1/2 cup of this ganache recipe and then cooled it in the fridge for a half hour. When the chocolate lining was solid, I filled it with the cream pie filling.

Then I topped it with real whip cream prepared as follows, inside a ziplock with the corner cut out.
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar (the cream of tarter in powdered sugar helps keep the volume)
1/2 tsp. vanilla.

I used another 1/4 cup of the ganache inside a ziplock with the corner cut out to make the squiggles. If it gets too stiff, nuke it for another second or two in the microwave.

I used some leftover caramel icecream topping, but it was too thin for the topping and I was afraid it would melt into the pie. So, I put it in a microwave bowl, splashed in 2 tbs. heavy whipping cream, 1/4 cup brown sugar and 1 tablespoon of butter. I nuked this for about 1 minute until a drop of it candy tested (dropped into ice water) at about soft ball.

I cooled this and then drizzled it over the top of 1/2 cup toasted pecans.

2.28.2014

Pulling Hairs: A Super Silly Celiac Conversation

A Visit with the Physician

Dr. Guy:  “So I’m calling to get back in touch about your mom's medical concerns with regards to your autoimmune disease.  Will you just do a simple test over the phone so I can get an idea of the problem?” 
The daughter, Sis D:  “Yeah.”

Dr. Guy: “Isolate 30 hairs on your head and pull on them--just hard enough that it stings a little bit.”
I could find no emoticon for chagrin, so I made one.
The daughter: “Um… all right.”

Dr. Guy: “Now count how many came out. It's totally normally for five or even ten to release."

Sis D: “Uh, all 30.” 
Thinking to herself, “ I could've told you that without the waste of good hair. What part of 'hair falling out' did you not understand?”

Dr. Guy: “Hmmmm, I’m going to have to do some research on this as it could be a myriad of things. I'm not too up to date with my celiac research. Don't worry too much--Oh, and before I hang up, I just want to ask. Do you think this is more of a "worried momma bear" issue or a real issue?”

Sis D: “Yeah, um, real. But I think you should probably still go ahead and call my mom, you know, just to let her know what's going on and kind of... reassure her? 

Dr. Guy: “Oh, okay, I'll call her right now.”
Two hours later. 

Dr. Guy: “Sister Darcey, talking to your mother was a joy.  I wish every mother in the mission was like her.  She’s done her research and she really knows her stuff.  She should have an M.D. We will be ordering the following tests just to eliminate potential problems and allay her absolutely valid concerns.”

Sister D: “Thank you.”

Reality Bite:  Somehow amongst the superciliousness that accompanies medicine, become an advocate for yourself.  

2.19.2014

Gluten Free Easy Chicken Enchiladas

This is a story of a college newlywed trying to cook for guests tonight while her GF Muse (read: Mom) is "busy." Lots of reality bites in this one, but it still turned out great.

Filling: (ie put this stuff with the chicken inside the tortillas)
can of green chiles
can of corn
can of black beans
can of tomatoes


  Reality Bite: shouldn't have blended the corn and beans into the sauce. Lumpy sauce is awkward for guests. Perfect for children who don't think they like veggies, though (evil laugh*). 

Oh, and the chicken.
Reality Bite: forgot to put the chicken in the crockpot eight hours ago. Well, if I put it on high that should half the cooking time... right...? 6 lbs of raw chicken in the crockpot for four hours on high with 1/2 c water and a couple teaspoons of salt and pepper, I'll just have to come back later and finish... yikes. 





And Sour Cream, which I have none of. ...1 part plain yogurt to 3 parts mayo makes a great substitute?
Reality Bite: Moommmmmyyyy! 
Sauce: (ie put this stuff in the pot, then the blender, and then spoon it over and under the rolled tortillas)
can of tomatoes
onion
olive oil
cilantro, red pepper/chili pepper (what's the difference, anyway?!), salt and pepper, cumin, lime? Sure.
Reality Bite:  have 16 oz of cumin and absolutely no cilantro in the house. Ugh. Borrow some from neighbors...  


Put some sauce in the casserole pan and start frying and filling the tortillas. The sauce helps them stick so they don't unroll. When your pan is full of filled, rolled tortillas, put on a few more spoonfuls of sauce and cover the whole thing in cheese. Mmmm.

Pretty forgiving recipe, turns out. 




2.12.2014

G-F Sugar Cookie Recipe

GF Valentine Sugar  Cookies?
 Today's batch.  Makes 32 (counting eaten ones)

First posted on Sept 8, 08.

Today I'm sorting through the avalanche of recipes that gave into nature laws and cascaded off my cookbook shelf.  I've been collecting for years, and today is the day that I'm stuffing them all together into one file. I'm flinging the ones upon which I've scrawled the warning, "never make this again!" Why, I wonder did I keep them to begin with? To preserve and revisit the agony?  But watch out, I'll be blogging the good ones.  This is Great Grandma Harritt's favorite (adapted to become gluten-free of course).


                   Grandma's Great Sugar Cookies

1/2 cup cold butter     Use a paddle in your mixmaster and beat with
3/4 cup sugar    Beat until fluffy then add
2 eggs, and
1 tsp vanilla      Beat until light and fluffy

Then add dry ingredients that have been sifted together

1 tsp xanthan gum
(or chia/flax seed, ground)
1/4 tsp salt
2 1/2 to 3 cups GF flour - any flour mix will work. (I used 1/4 cup coconut flour in the last batch and that worked well.) 

1 tsp baking soda

Today I used my wholegrain flour mix.  Use your personal favorite. I recommend Bob's Red Mill, Better Batter, Jules--whatever.  I have used sorghum flour (Use enough to make a dough ball that pulls nicely away from the bowl, not too dry nor too soggy.)

Grandma's original recipe said "ADD 'TIL MAKES A DOUGH. She expects us to know what a cookie dough looks like. Light, fluffy, not too stiff or dry.  Remember to add gf flours and let dough sit for a minute to fully absorb moisture.

Chill dough and roll out cookies on a skiff of rice or sorghum flour to prevent STICKAGE. I roll between plastic wrap and that makes it easy to peel off , cut and place on cookie sheets. Place 1/2 inch apart on baking sheet and bake 8-10 minutes.

Frost with favorite GF frosting.
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 11-12-11   Scrooge Christmas Musings

Hey, Christmas post, but no new photo -- I'm too busy today. Here's an old one from Valentines.  

The holidays scramble is coming! And I hate it. The same people who admired my Scrooge/Marley costume at the Halloween party suddenly--overnight even--find it prophination!

I harbor a secret wish that purchasers of any Christmas related items before Halloween, might be auto-tasered at every store exit.

But after the 31st of November, I'd better be transferring my evil thoughts to planning for holiday baking and the visions of sugarplums to make the whole season more appealing for everyone.   
Reality Bite:  
If Momma Aint Happy, Aint nobody happy!