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Porcupine Meatballs (no road kill was used in this recipe…)

I had tasted this recipe on Sunday at a friends house and usually I bring my own food but I had been eating mine the last few days so I was open to something different. When I ask my friends “what’s all in it” usually a few key ingredients get missed and I end up hurting.
I think I asked my friend 2-3 times before eating it to be sure the story was straight. So I gave one a try. They were sooo good! So I asked again so I can copy down the recipe and when she said tomato soup instead of sauce my eyes got real big! Uh oh! But she just miss spoke and it was really sauce. (I’m sure not all ingredients used were completely GF cuz I did notice some stomach cramping, but I lived).
After asking the last (probably 6th time by now) what all was in it, she finally found the recipe card and I snapped a few pics. Yea!
So here’s the recipe. It’s pretty easy. Probably 45 minutes from start to finish. Or an hour if you include cleanup.
I’m all for quick and easy! Even though my back feels like I was standing in the kitchen for 2 hours…makes it hard for me to enjoy cooking with my defects!
For some reason I enjoy baking more than cooking, maybe less chopping? But I barely bake anymore because I’ve been avoiding sugar.
Which do you prefer? Cooking or baking? Is it possible to like to both? Let me know in the comments which you prefer more? That way I can also add more of those recipes to my page. πŸ˜‰
Enjoy!

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Porcupine Meatballs
β€’ 1/2 Cup Jasmine Rice
β€’ 1/2 Cup water
β€’ 1/3 Cup diced onions
β€’ 1/4 tsp celery seed
β€’ 1 tsp sea salt
β€’ 1/8 tsp pepper
β€’ 1/8 tsp GF garlic powder (or a few cloves fresh pressed garlic).
Side note: I’m thinking this recipe needs an herb, but can’t decide which to use. Parsley? Rosemary? Basil? Any of them would deepen the flavor for sure. About 1/2 tsp.
Also refrigerating over night would really enhance the flavor of these little porcupine balls.

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β€’ 1 Pound Lean Ground Beef
—————-
For Sauce:
β€’ 1 (15 oz) can GF tomato sauce
β€’ 1 cup water
β€’ 2 TBS brown sugar
β€’ 2 tsp Worcestershire Sauce (Lea & Perrins brand is Gluten Free).

The Steps:
1) Preheat oven to 400Β°F

2) Mix the first 7 ingredients together and let sit for 5-10 minutes to let the rice soak up some water or the rice will be crunchy when it’s finished.

3) Then add to the above mixture:
1 pound lean ground beef (preferably grass fed).
Mix together with hands until all incorporated. Roll into 1-1/2″ balls.

4) Heat 2 TBS coconut oil in a large skillet on medium heat and drop 1-1/2″ round meatballs in heated oil until brown on all sides.

5) In separate bowl mix all the ingredients for the sauce together until incorporated.

6) Using a 9″x9″ or 9″x13″ pan (depending how big your meatballs turned out). Transfer all cooked meatballs into this dish and pour tomato sauce mixture over top.
Place in oven and bake for 30 minutes. Turning and basting with the tomato sauce after 15 minutes.

7) Remove from oven and check the center to be sure they are cooked all the way through. Then serve over rice, GF pasta, or whatever your heart desires.

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Spicy Tortilla Soup

Tis the season for a warm soup! One of the reasons I love autumn is because it’s a great excuse to make SOUP! I am totally a soup person. I hated breakfast foods when I was a teen, so I would eat Campbell’s select chicken noodle for breakfast. And ya, I was hungry like 1 hour later. Haha.
This soup is gluten free and very hearty. I served this Sunday and most my friends made soup or chili too. We all had that look on our face like we barely ate but were sooo full! I ate mine with my Organic non-GMO white corn chips and they had their Juanita’s. They asked why I brought my own….umm…everything about Juanita’s chips are tainted! To each his own. :-p
This soup got the crowd approval, so it’s edible. I hope you try it, it can be made in the crockpot too. If you use canned beans then you don’t have to cook as long, 20-30 minutes to simmer is fine. I wish I had more chicken to work with but there were only 2 rotisserie chickens left; small or smaller. 😦 I had run all over town Saturday to get my stuff I between errands and avoiding car wrecks on the freeway. No greater joy then hitting every red light it town! :-p
I hope you try it out. Enjoy!

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Tortilla Soup

β€’ 1 lb. dried black beans, rinsed
β€’ 6 cups Chicken stock
β€’ 1 large onion, chopped
β€’ 2 ribs celery, chopped
β€’ 3 carrot, finely chopped
β€’ 4 cloves garlic, pressed
β€’ 2 tsp. cumin
β€’ 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
β€’ 2 bay leaves
β€’ 3 T. tomato paste
β€’ salt to taste (about 3/4 – 1 tsp)
β€’ 1/2-1 tsp pepper
β€’ 1 rotisserie chicken, de-boned and shredded
β€’ Cilantro, chopped for topping
β€’ Cheese for topping (I use almond cheese)
β€’ Tortilla chips

How To:
Cover and soak beans overnight, or bring to boil and then turn off stove and soak for 1 hour. Drain. (Or cheat if in a time crunch and use 2-3 15oz cans rinsed and drained)
Add chicken stock, onion, celery, carrot, garlic, cumin, red pepper flakes, and bay leaves. Bring to boil and simmer gently about 1 hour.
Stir in tomato paste, chicken bouillon, salt and pepper.
Simmer another 30-45 minutes, till beans are cooked through. Add chicken.
Remove bay leaves.
Serve topped with cilantro and cheese and tortilla chips.

*Note* I usually add more veggies than called for because I like a nice chunky soup to dip my chips in. πŸ™‚

 
 

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Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

I can’t believe this month went by so fast! I have been so sick lately with stomach issues and then my normal stuff x10 so it’s not been a fun one. I have had no motivation to cook or anything lately and basically been living on raw veggies and hummus. One good thing out of all this is that by no mental effort, I’ve hit my goal weight. (Sorry if that offends anyone!) So I’m happy about that, but I wish my stomach would cooperate! I still have a bunch of tests to run to figure out the problem. Sometimes I feel like a genetic defect and they should just start over and hit the reset button!
I have a feeling my diet will be changing drastically in the next few months, so there might be some yummy recipes coming. (Here’s hoping!)
I mentioned in my last post that I was going to try a kale basil hummus…and it was not that tasty, so I’ll spare you from trying it too. I think mainly my beans weren’t cooked enough and the consistency was not great (I cooked mine in the pressure cooker). But this one is great and two of my co-workers were loving it today. πŸ˜€
I’m also glad it’s payday week because I just had to clean out my veggie drawer that wasn’t looking too happy. 😦
So here’s the recipe, now back to being conformed to my work chair another 5 hours.

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Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
β€’ 2 large garlic cloves, chopped
β€’ 3-4 cups cooked garbanzo beans (chick-peas), drained
β€’ 1/3 cup tahini (sesame seed paste)
β€’ 1/4 – 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
β€’ 1 red pepper seeded, chopped & roasted (I did mine in a toaster oven on broil)
β€’ 1/2 tsp salt (if using dry beans, 1/4 tsp if using canned)
β€’ 1/4 tsp dried parsley
β€’ 1/4 cup olive oil (add however much you like for consistency)
β€’ 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
β€’ 1/8 tsp cumin

How to:
– To prepare garbanzo beans in pressure cooker, add 7 cups of water/chicken broth to 2-2.5 cups dry (rinsed) beans.
– Seal top, and cook according to your pressure cookers instructions for 25-30 minutes.
– Rinse, de-seed and cut in large chunks your red pepper and put on broil until it’s looking roasted. Maybe 15 minutes? I didn’t put mine right next to the heat so it could take less time, just keep checking it.
– Once all that is ready, drain beans, peel garlic, juice lemon, dump all ingredients and spices in food processor except oil.
– Turn on to low setting until it’s starting to look smooth.
– Turn up to high setting and drizzle in olive oil from the opening in lid until it starts to get the consistency you like.
– Taste test to see if it needs tweaking, then either refrigerate for an hour to enhance flavor, or devour and leave no trace behind. πŸ˜‰

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I hope you are having a great week and leave any suggestions for hummus experiments in the comments or yummy ones you have tried. πŸ™‚ Thanks!

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Not your normal Taco…

I have been craving tacos lately and someone brought mexi food into the office for me to be tortured by. So I tried to think of the quickest tacos possible….with little effort…no red meat.
I decided on super green shredded chicken tacos. πŸ˜€
They are super green cuz I didn’t want to buy red anything…too expensive! (Ahem red bell peppers…why do you have to cost so much?!?) And the other super is a super food, bok choy. Ya, I’m weird…I dare you to try it! It’s not bitter, it’s just right and loaded with good vitamins. πŸ˜‰
So here’s how I did it…

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Ingredients:
β€’ 1 lb. chicken breast
β€’ 1 cup chicken broth or stock
β€’ 1 serving of taco seasoning (my recipe below…store bought packets are glutenous)
β€’ 1 onion, chopped
β€’ 1 small bell pepper, chopped (splurge on red if you like, they are $6.99/lb here right now).
β€’ 1 14 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
β€’ 1 can of corn or fresh/frozen…going for quick here though.
β€’ 2-3 cloves garlic, crushed
β€’ Salt, pepper, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne.
β€’ 1 Tbs Grape seed oil
β€’ Guac & salsa (sour fream if you like, but soy cream is GROSS, I call it “Freme” cuz it’s Fake Cream…Freme)
β€’ Taco shells or Udi’s has an AWESOME “flour” tortilla out now. Sooo yummy, make sure you heat it or it will break.
β€’ “Cheese” I use Lisanatti brand Almond cheese in jalapaΓ±o flavor, but you have to cook the cheese with the shells or it won’t melt. I’m not a big fan of Dayia.

Taco Operation:
I use my pressure cooker to make the chicken. (Ain’t nobody got time to wait for chicken to cook after a long day of work!)
Put the broth in pot, add taco seasoning, salt and pepper (I totally eyeballed this so do how much you like) Dip the chicken in so it coats both sides. Lock the lid and set timer to 15 min after the rocker starts a rockin.
Cut up onions, and smash your garlic. Add them to a stainless steel sautΓ© pan (a big one because we will be adding lots of ingredients later) with some grape seed oil and the black beans.
The stainless steel caramelizes the onion awesome. Teflon, not so much. The grape seed oil I like using more than olive oil cuz it can handle high heat better.
When onions are closer to done add the bell peppers, corn (if it was frozen thaw it, if its canned, drain it) and spices (Salt, pepper, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne). Again I eyeballed this. Make them all grilled looking and delisioso.
Then…rinse and chop green parts of bok choy, pat dry. Shred “cheese”.
By now your chicken should be done.
CAREFULLY take your pressure cooker to the sink and pour cold water over the lid until the needle goes down (I have an antique PC so I don’t know about the digital kind all I know is that if that knobby thing falls of between stove and sink its not gonna be perty).
Take out the chickens, shred with two forks, add it back to the liquid, then drain.
Then assemble tacos! I’m sure you all know how to do that part. πŸ˜‰
I used the New Seasons guac because I didn’t want to add another step and it was good!
So after this quick meal that took about a million words to describe, here’s the GF taco seasoning…(also do a search for my GF “Hidden Valley Ranch” and “Lipton’s Onion Soup” recipe dupes. You will save yourself some money…and it’s super easy!)

Gf Taco Seasoning
β€’ 4 tbsp. ground cumin
β€’ 2 1/2 tsp. paprika
β€’ 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
β€’ 2 tsp. onion powder
β€’ 2 tsp. garlic powder
β€’ 1 tsp. black pepper
β€’ 2 tsp. chili powder

How To:
Blend all spices in a bowl and use to season any taco meat you are cooking.
*I THINK this is the equivalent of one packet? I don’t remember, I make a big batch so I don’t have to think about it when I need it.

This recipe makes about 12-14 tacos.
Sharing is caring! πŸ˜€

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Almost Vegan pizza! “I like green pizza, no ham Sam I am!”

I have been wanting to make my own pizzas, because GF DF pizzas are about $14 for a 10″….not cheap!
So I bought Bobs Red Mill pizza crust mix…and it’s still in the bag. πŸ˜›
Today I saw Udi’s GF pizza crust pre made! (only $4.49 for 2, not too bad)
The crust is GF, DF, soy free, nut free, but not egg free.

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I was going to use the pepperoni that has been in my fridge but then after seeing the expiration date was last year of October and a consensus over text that it’s probably not okay. So that’s when I made it a vegan pizza minus the whole crust having egg thing.
Here’s a step-by-step of how it looks as I was making it.

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I started with a pesto for the sauce, added my Dayia mozzarella cheese, topped with mushrooms, orange bell pepper, shallots, zucchini, (all thinly sliced). Then topped with Trader Joes 21 Season Salute (see pic for what’s all in it, it’s my use on EVERYTHING seasoning!) Topped with more Dayia then baked on 375Β° F for 9-10 min.
Superb!!! It tastes sooooo good!!!!! πŸ˜€
Here’s the seasoning…

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Sam! If you will let me be, I will try it. You will see.

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Hey! I like green pizza, no ham!
I do! I like them, Sam I am!
And I would eat it in a boat.
And I would eat it with a goat…
And I will eat it in the rain.
And in the dark. And on a train.
And in a car. And in a tree.
It is so good, so good, you see!
So I will eat it in a box.
And I will eat it with a fox.
And I will eat it in a house.
And I will eat it with a mouse.
And I will eat it here and there.
Say! I will eat it ANYWHERE!
I do so like green pizza, no ham!
Thank you!
Thank you,
Sam I am!

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P.S. I totally grossed out my nephew with the whole veggies and pesto that he disowned me until I eat some meat. LOL!! πŸ˜›

 
3 Comments

Posted by on August 29, 2012 in A day in the life of Jeni, Food and drink

 

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Vegan Ranch Dressing

After going dairy free I noticed I can’t use the Hidden Valley ranch packets anymore. I’m just too sensitive to dairy. So I found a recipe that tastes WONDERFUL!! It’s Dairy Free too…

Here’s my version of it:

Vegan Ranch Dressing

1 cup vegan mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons parsley, chopped
1/2 cup unsweetened soymilk

Directions:
Whisk all ingredients together and chill before serving. Add a little more soy milk if you need to thin dressing.

**you can use unsweetened almond milk also and regular mayo in place of vegan, unless you have a egg allergy.
I like the tangy zip of miracle whip.
***Warning, Lite Miracle Whip is NOT gluten free, so use the regular kind.

If you are worried this will taste bland, just read the reviews from the original recipe here.

 
 

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Finally a GF/DF Chocolate Chip Cookie worth making! :D

I have been on a journey…and sometimes I stray from that journey. –>;;; Read this post to understand what journey I’m on…

N-E-Way, I’ve been wanting to find a recipe for GF/DF chocolate chip cookies that are chewy, not crunchy (I hate those kind) and one that doesn’t take much effort, because I really don’t feel good today (Fibromyalgia flare up). But it’s Friday and I only want a few cookies, but making a whole batch is not worth it for just me, and I’m making a Peach and Blackberry Crisp/Pie tomorrow for my Sunday Lunch with my friends. So I finally got my excuse! My friend sent a text that she’s having an ice cream gathering tonight….it’s been upper 90’s all week.

I can’t have dairy, so I like to make something I can munch on. I searched MANY blogs for good reviews and I finally pinned it down to this one. I don’t remember which blog I got it from because I only took a screen shot before continuing my search…but I modified it a little, so it’s not completely plagiarized…

So here’s a pic if you want to see how BeAuTiFuL these look…and then drool…and then bake some for yourself.

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Now here’s the recipe. Easy Peasy… πŸ™‚

GF/DF Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients:
β€’2 1/4 Cups Bob’s Red Mill GF AP flour
β€’1 tsp GF Baking Powder
β€’1 tsp Baking Soda
β€’1/2 tsp Salt
β€’1 1/4 tsp Xanthan Gum
β€’3/4 Cup Earth Balance, softened
β€’3/4 Cup packed Brown Sugar
β€’1/2 Cup Sugar
β€’2 Eggs (I’m not a Vegan, so use egg replacer if you are…I don’t know the amount)
β€’2 tsp GF Vanilla Extract
β€’10-12 Oz Dark Chocolate Chunks (because regular choc chips bother my tummy)
β€’1/2 Cup chopped Walnuts

Directions:

1) Heat oven to 375Β° F.
2) Combine butter, brown sugar, sugar, eggs, and vanilla in mixer bowl until creamy.
3) In smaller separate bowl mix GF Flour, baking soda, baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt. Whisk to combine.
4) Slowly add in your flour to creamed mixture while beating until combined.
5) Add Chocolate Chunks and Walnuts until combined.
6) Dough may be sticky, so I refrigerated for about an hour while I made some GF/DF Ranch Dressing, and ate some potato salad…Mmmm Potatoes…
7) Line your cookie sheet with parchment paper. (I line my stoneware with it because it’s been glutened in the past and I don’t want to buy a new one yet). Use a small scooper (or two small spoons) to drop cookies about 1 1/2″ apart. They don’t spread as much because of the extra Xanthan gum, so don’t worry if they are a little close together.
8) Bake for 9-12 minutes. My first batch I went 9 minutes, and they were a bit underdone, but some peoples like it that way…me included. The next batch I left it in for 10 minutes.

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9) After pulling it out of the oven, let it sit for 3 minutes on your cookie sheet before transferring to cooling rack.
10) DEVOUR! Oh wait!…I mean share with friends! πŸ˜‰

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