I got a new book that is primarily hot sauce (because we love all things spicy) and decided today was the day to give it a try. I had 5 habaneros in the fridge that needed to be used while fresh and there is nothing I can think of that I want to cook with 5 habaneros in it, so I pulled the book out of my cook book collection and gave it a peruse.
We carry our lunches on workdays and my husband frequently carries breakfast because he leaves so early in the morning. I am always looking for easy but somewhat healthy recipes that I can cook on the weekend that will last us through the week. I have to stay gluten and dairy free, which also requires that I cook most of my food from scratch. Thankfully, my dear husband eats gluten and dairy free right along with me and seems to enjoy it, so I don't have to cook separate meals for the two of us...or make him cook his own. ;)
I scour Pinterest for recipes and save my favorites in my Copy Me That app. I use the same app to record the recipes I create from scratch. If you haven't checked it out, please do. It is a very useful application.
I saw several recipes that used a basic boxed cake mix with added goodies to make muffins, cakes,and other munchies. I decided to start with this recipe from $5 Dinners and add my own modifications. The resulting muffins are pretty tasty and very quick to put together.
Easy Gluten Free Pumpkin Muffins
1 gluten free yellow cake mix (I used Hodgson Mills)
1 29-oz can pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling, just plain pumpkin)
1/4 c. oat bran (gluten free-I always use Bob's Red Mill GF oat products)
2 tsp. Pumpkin pie spice
1 c. coarsely chopped nuts
2 eggs (if you are allergic, just leave them out. It will still work).
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place muffin papers into two 12 muffin pans (it makes 24 muffins) or grease the pans. I only have one 12 muffin pan, so I made mine in two batches.
Mix all ingredients together just until blended. I used a Kitchenaid mixer and blended everything but the nuts, then stirred them in.
Fill muffin cups about 3/4 full. The dough is very thick, so you may want to pat it down into the cup just a little.
Bake 20-25 minutes. At 7000 feet, it took exactly 25 minutes.
That's it! Now we have a somewhat healthy munchy for our lunches and it will be good with coffee in the morning.
My husband and I frequently have bagels for breakfast. If you haven't tried Udi's Everything Bagels or Mighty Bagels, get thee to the nearest conveyor of Udi's goodness and grab a package. Love them! I get mine at Sprouts, but I've also seen them at Whole Foods.
Alas, many cream cheese spreads for bagels are not gluten free. They also often have lots of sugar or other unhealthy ingredients that I try to avoid. Gluten free does NOT mean healthy! I whipped up the following recipe, which easily lasted a week for us, eating some every morning on our bagels.
GF Blueberry Cream Cheese Spread
12 oz cream cheese
6 oz fresh organic blueberries
1/2 to 1 Tbsp organic honey or agave nectar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract (GF)
1/4 c. chopped almonds
I put everything into a mixing bowl and beat it thoroughly with an electric mixer. I would have used my food processor, but it is still packed in a box in our old house because we haven't finished moving. The mixer worked well because it left chunks of blueberries, which would have been more finely mixed with a food processor. Personal preference. Chunks or no chunks. Very tasty! Next I'm trying a goat cheese spread...stay tuned.
We had a potluck at work last week that was devoted to the theme, "Bacon". That meant we needed to bring a dish that featured bacon or that was good served with bacon. I chose to make a potato soup with bacon, one of my kids favorites growing up, and here is the recipe.
Hearty Potato and Bacon Soup
2.5 lbs of red potatoes, chopped into bite size pieces
Half of a bunch of celery hearts (or celery-I like the hearts better)
2 c shredded (or diced) carrots
1 small onion, diced
1 lb of bacon
4 vegetable or chicken bullion cubes (gluten-free if you are on the GF diet)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 c. heavy cream
3 c. milk
1 stick (1/2 c) butter
1/2 c potato flour (you can substitute regular flour, same amount)
1 Tsp dried parsley or about 1/4 c finely chopped fresh parsley
Water--enough to cover veggies in the pan, about 8 cups.
Slice the bacon cross wise into about 1/2 inch pieces. Fry them in a skillet until as done as you like your bacon, then remove to a paper towel on a plate and drain. Add chopped onion and celery to the bacon drippings and saute until somewhat translucent-about 5 minutes. Places potatoes, carrots, celery and onions in a large pan and add water just until all the veggies are covered. Bring to a boil and simmer until the potatoes are soft-about 20 minutes. Add the bullion cubes, let simmer a couple minutes more til they dissolve. While all this is going on, melt the butter in a sauce pan and stir in the potato flour. If you like your soup really thick, you may want to use more butter and flour (3/4-1 c). Cook the flour/butter for about 5 minutes, then stir into the soup and add the milk. Return to a boil. Stir in the cream, bacon and parsley and return to a low boil, just til heated throughout. It is ready to serve at this point and would be yummy with various toppings--more crumbled bacon, some sharp cheddar or chopped green onions.
I plan to try the recipe again with a modification-about 2-3 cups chopped, fresh spinach stirred in with the bacon and cream at the end and cook just until it is wilted. I'll let you know how it turns out. Yum!
This has become one of my favorite breakfasts. I found the recipe on Sugar Free Mom, but every time I make it, I change it a little depending on what is in my pantry at the moment. This batch is topped with sunflower seeds, craisins, sliced almonds and blueberries. I did not have pumpkin in my pantry, so I substituted mashed bananas and added about 1/3 c greek yogurt and an extra egg. I was also out of pumpkin spice (nearly), so instead of 4 tsp pumpkin spice, I used 1 tsp pumpkin spice, 2 tsp allspice, 1 tsp cinnamon (because we love cinnamon) and 1/2 tsp turmeric just to see how it comes out. I will let you know! I've also had a little trouble with the tummy when I've used stevia--still sorting that out. So this has 1/3 c organic sugar.
I have been on a gluten free diet for over 30 years now because I have celiac disease. When I started on the diet, cakes and such were pretty much unheard of. Now Betty Crocker makes gluten free cake and cookie mixes. However, I don't like to use a lot of refined starches like white rice flour. We also live 20 miles from the grocery store, so I don't want to make a special trip for a cake mix. But I do like the occasional little sweet treat, as does my husband.
I came across this recipe from Dr. Ola on Pinterest and it was so easy, I thought I could adapt it to be gluten free. So I tinkered with it a little and my husband and I both really like the results. Plus, it has ingredients that are almost always in my kitchen.
Easy GF cake
1/2 c GF sweet sorghum flour
1/2 c GF cornstarch
1/2 tsp xantham gum
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 T butter, melted
2 T olive oil
1 can sweetened condensed milk (14 oz)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an 8" square cake pan. Mix all dry ingredients first, then add the rest of the ingredients, beat a couple of minutes by hand or with a mixer and pour into the pan. Cook about 40 minutes. A toothpick should come out clean when inserted in the middle.
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We always fix a big breakfast on the days my husband is off work. Today it was pancakes with blueberry syrup. I had frozen blueberries and just needed to find the right recipe. That proved to be a little harder than expected, so I improvised after reading several different recipes. I always use agave nectar rather than sugar, if possible, and all the recipes I found had either honey or sugar. Every recipe also called for orange juice, which we almost never have because we like the blueberry/pomegranate/cranberry 100% juice mixes, organic if we can find it. We always have that. So after a little cogitating, here is what I came up with. It was just enough for the two of us plus a little left over for ice cream topping or something equally yummy.
1.5 cups frozen (or fresh) blueberries
2/3 cup cranberry/blueberry/blackberry 100% juice mix (divided)
3 tablespoons organic agave nectar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Mix the 1.5 c. blueberries, 1/3 c. juice (reserve 1/3 c.), and 3 T agave nectar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Mix the reserved 1/3 c. juice with 1 T cornstarch and 1 tsp vanilla extract and stir until the cornstarch is dissolved. Stir into blueberries and stir until sauce thickens. Serve warm over pancakes or waffles. It would also make a good topping for cheesecake, ice cream, pound cake--just about anything. Makes about 1.5 cups of sauce.
When I lived in Olympia, Wa, the landscaping in my yard included blueberry bushes. I would pick them, wash them, and freeze them whole on a cookie sheet, then put in a freezer bag or container and store in the freezer. I could easily measure out a cup as needed for cooking or snacking and those were bar none the best blueberries I've ever eaten. Edible landscaping is such a good idea!!
I will be the first to admit that my husband and I are a little bit on the coffee snob side. We are very picky about our coffee and love trying unique blends. These can also be pricey blends, so on the rare occasions that we have a little coffee left in the pot, pouring it out would be like pouring money down the drain (for me, anyway). So I stick it in the fridge and save it. Then the problem becomes what to do with it--I can only drink so much iced coffee in any given day.
I saw a dessert on Food Network made out of coffee and started playing with that idea. I have a small, electric ice cream maker and just wanted to make a small amount that would use left over coffee. Here is the recipe that I came up with. It serves about 4 people.
Hot Damn Coffee Granita
1.5 c coffee, the stronger the better
1/2 c fat-free Half and Half
1/2 c sugar
1 T cocoa
1.5 oz Hot Damn Cinnamon Schnapps
1 tsp vanilla extract
Mix all ingredients together and place in a small, electric ice cream freezer (instructions will vary by freezer). For me, it took about 20 minutes to freeze. You can also pour it into a casserole dish and place in the freezer, then stir every 45 minutes or so to disperse the ice crystals. It won't freeze real hard because of the alcohol in it. You could substitute other alcohols with a little experimenting. I can tell you we won't be tossing out any coffee. Here is a good article on theKitchn with some more ideas for making the most of left over coffee.
Note: I tried this recipe with peppermint Schnapps and it was quite tasty. I upped the cocoa to 2 T and added 3 oz of Schnapps instead of the cinnamon. It was really good!!
I love to make real cheesecake, but am always trying to figure out the gluten free crust. They are almost always made from some kind of cookie that I can't find. However, I've come up with a pretty good alternative.
This was an Amaretto cheesecake and called for a crust made of vanilla sandwich cookies. Instead, I ground up almonds in the food processor until they were the size of small crumbs, enough to make 1.5 c when ground. I then added 2 T organic sugar and 3 T melted margarine, mixed well and pressed it into the bottom of a greased spring form pan. Worked like a charm and the almond crust tastes great with the Amaretto flavored cheesecake. I've tried walnuts before too and it was pretty good. I've been GF 30 years and the Amaretto does not bother me, but you should always investigate ingredients if you are sensitive.
I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in 1982 and have been gluten free ever since. I went dairy free two years ago. I share recipes, patterns, life philosophies and thoughts on this blog. This is just my story. In no way should it be taken as medical advice because every individual is different. There are also a few affiliate links for products I use and recommend. I make a tiny amount of money if you buy something and it in no way changes the price you pay.
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