Gluten Free Foodies
Celebrate the foods that you can eat!
Ah ... a long lingering evening on Christmas Eve nibbling on homemade treats.
As I was preparing for guests to arrive baking and cooking I was thinking about why each thing I was making made the menu. Some of the treats were new - Wild Forest Honey Almonds with Herbed Flor de Sal, a new favorite recipe that is so good and can be made a thousand different ways just by changing the honey and sea salt or seasoning. Gluten Free Chocolate Rum Cake ... do I really need to explain this one?!? So good! Great the next morning or anytime with coffee, if there is some leftover. Pussac Punay Beans was a big hit! I just thought it would be fun to introduce something that has become a monthly meal for me because I love them so much. There were some skeptics in the crowd but the beautiful beans won everyone over! I think that variety is always key - sweet, salty, savory, crunchy, soft, warm, chilled ...I made sure we had it all. The only requirement was that it was also fast and easy to make it.
One family favorite that I asked my mother to make doesn't really have a name but it is so easy to make and is just perfectly satisfying. This is a childhood favorite that I couldn't wait to have again was - Chilled Roast Beef with Avocado, Red Onion, Olive Oil and Red Wine Vinegar served on French Bread slices - Gluten Free French Bread! It was better than I remembered! Bravo mom!
So we both made Gluten Free French Bread and I must say they were equally a treat yet so different. Mom's bread was soft, dense yet sturdy and strong to hold the toppings. My bread was soft and airy almost Brioche like! Slightly sweet and all I could think of when I tried it was how wonderful it would be to make French Toast! I couldn't wait to wake up and make it!
I want to tell you about this gift that I made for my friend today but it is a surprise.
We share the love of good old fashioned treats and
I can't think of anything better than this homemade gift!
I got a little carried away with singing in the kitchen while I was making this ...
thank goodness I was alone!
But you can sing along with me to the tune of Jingle Bells!
while jamin iTunes tonight
Gluten Free all the way
Gluten Free Red Curry Christmas Chex Mix
Gluten Free Red Curry Christmas Chex Mix
Gluten Free all the way ...
OH! What fun it is to make
in an open baking pan tonight!
Get to the recipe, please get to the recipe ...
Please get to the recipe NOW ...
If you are using a Mac and see a blank screen please click here for a link.
Have you seen World News with Diane Sawyer on ABC?
Well, every night that I see this segment I am so amazed at how wonderful
it is to see so many great people and companies supporting each other
during the holidays and throughout the year.
Gluten Free treats inside. Please don't tell my secret but ... I am putting a tag on the jar that lets my dear friends and family return the jar to me for refills of their choice of Gluten Free treats that they love! It is kind of fun to do that because they get a gift all year and it saves on the environment - no paper or bags. Please don't tell anyone my secret gifts! I want them to be a surprise!
Thank you for supporting local artists and companies that are Made in America!
Happiest of Holidays to you!
Place a sheet of parchment paper on the baking pan. Pour the butter and honey coated almonds on to the baking pan. Spread the almonds out in a layer, allowing the almonds to touch to create clusters. Bake in the oven for 15-17 minutes. The aroma is absolutely amazing! Remove from oven and let cool for 2 minutes. Add the sprinkles of Flor de Sal or Sea Salt. Let cool at least 1hour before serving.
It's that time of year to share my favorite finds of the year and I can't wait for you to get them too!
Sous Vide Supreme
All I can say is that if you love to entertain or you cook for a large family or just like to slow cook then the Sous Vide Supreme is for you! Sous Vide aka soo-veed is a French term for "under vacuum". The food is cooked at a precise temperature while it is immersed in a water bath. You will not overcook the food so it is perfect for those in your family that are chronically late. This method allows you to cook the other food for your meal while the main course is staying perfectly cooked - moist and warm. It is just like having a Sous Chef in your kitchen!
I was so lucky to spend some time with a demo unit from Sous Vide Supreme and I have to say it was so easy to use, just a little prep time, in it goes and off you go to enjoy your day. A few hours later and you have the most amazing steak, pork, chicken or fish - tender, moist and flavorful. You can make all sorts of things with the Sous Vide Supreme - drinks, desserts, soups, side dishes and more. There are several books to guide you to this new, simple and healthy cooking method. The Sous Vide comes in several colors and sizes. This is one appliance that will look great on your counter top and you will not want to put it away. You will use it all the time.
I spent my time making meat. Great to make extra to have leftovers for lunch the next day. You can even keep the food sealed and put the extras in the freezer. The meat was perfectly moist and tender every time! I enjoyed every minute of it because it was so easy and I had fun creating some flavor combinations to try - Apple Brown Sugar Pork, Curry Coconut Pork and Aji Lime Chicken were some of my favorites. My absolute ... by far most surprising was steak! Don't tell anyone but I do not like to cook steak. The Sous Vide Supreme made me look like a Top Chef because it in just a short time my steak was cooked to perfection and then I seared it on a cast iron grill pan. Now I love to cook steak ... the Sous Vide Supreme way!
Santa are you listening???
The Sous Vide Supreme is on my wish list this year!
I love the look of shiny chrome and black in my kitchen appliances. There is just something about having fun waking up in the morning and looking forward to making a good cup of coffee that is worth getting out of bed. So, I recently took a turn back in time and bought an "Old School" Percolator Coffee Pot by West Bend . It reminds me so much of my grandparents. I have to laugh because the minute I got it, I had to make coffee ... even though it was 9 PM at night!
The sound percolating ... the aroma and the clear, crystal-like tip allows you to see that beautiful, rich brown coffee swishing through brewing just waiting to be poured into a cup of coffee! If you like your coffee really really hot, this is for you! No filters and easy to use! Love it!
So of course I had to continue my chrome theme after getting tired of turning on my gas stove - $$$ - just to heat up some water for tea or a hot drink. It is fast and really hot, too! Love it!
Electric Cordless Hot Water Kettle by Aroma
I found both for around $30 on Amazon.
Chef'n Tongo 9" Tongs - I use them for everything - removing waffles from my non-stick iron, tossing a salad, roasting vegetables, removing just about anything that I need to grab and move. The Tongo Tongs are ergonomic and have a one-handed release, nothing fancy, just easy. They have a big silicone head which makes grabbing anything big or small simple to move safely from one place to another. They come in a variety of colors but I just love my fun red ones! I would have to say they are my most used tool in the kitchen since I received them as a gift.
Sistema Large Square Storage Containers from Storables for Gluten Free Flour mixes. It is so hard to get into a bag of flour and it is so precious that you don't want to spill the slightest bit. Storing them in these containers helps to keep the flours fresh, organized in your GF pantry and easy to get in to measure. The variety of sizes can hold my 1 lb - 5lb bags of GF flour perfectly. I usually cut the information from the Gluten Free Flour mix so that I know what the ingredients are and I tape them to the top of the lid. I make a printed label for the front of the bin so I can see which of the bins contains the GF flour that I am looking for when they are stacked in my pantry.
TIP - I suggest getting a gift certificate from Storables for your favorite Gluten Free friend or family member. They can shop online or in the store. Every January, Storables has a big organizing sale and this is a great time to save money and get these wonderful storage boxes. Also, it is so much easier for someone to pick out what they need when it comes to organizing. I would share this posting and tips with them, so that they know about the products and sale. I love Storables and their awesome staff!
I have mentioned the Weck Jars in previous postings but ... I love them!
It is worth mentioning again. In the Seattle area you can find them at Crate & Barrel but you can also find store locations in your area by going to the Weck Jar website. I use them for everything! They just look so nice and when you put homemade treats in them ... they are a great gift!
Happy Gluten Free Foodies Holiday Shopping!
* 1 additional egg for making the cookies shinny, optional
silicone or flat baking spatula
small bowl for decorating sugar
silicone baking brush
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
To bake, take the dough out of the refrigerator and unwrap and leave on parchment paper. Let the dough warm up just a tad, and place a piece of parchment paper over the dough to roll it out in a rectangular shape, 1/4 inch thick.
TIP - these cookies are perfect thick or crispy thin! You decide or make both!
Use your favorite cookie cutter, using all the dough to cut out the cookies. I like the like the scalloped edge cookie cutter in 3 sizes. I also make thick and thin for a variety of desires. Place the cutout cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, add the raw or decorating sugar. I like to add one of the spices from the cookie to the sugar - cinnamon or cardamom are favorites. I also like to keep some of the naturally spiced flavored sugar in a container ready to use. The longer it sits, the flavor has time to absorb into the sugar. I actually have a small box made out of cinnamon tree bark that I keep my raw sugar in and it absorbs the cinnamon flavor from the bark!
Let cool on a baking rack before serving.
Make your favorite hot drink, call your best friend to come over and put your feet up in front of the fire.
It's Gluten Free Spiced Sweet Potato Cardamom Cookie time!
I recently attended a private book party for the Fabulous Beekman Boys. You know the ones on the Planet Green TV. I just love them - Brent and Josh, their goats and Farmer John! Such cutie pies!
Well they have a fabulous new book out called The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Cookbook. It is such a lovely cookbook. So much thought and detail ... some might think it not necessary but the details in creating this book are all intentional, thanks to Brent's perfection syndrome. The paper, the frosted paper dividers, the placket, the photographs and the best and most unique thing ... the pages with the pockets! The pockets are there so that you can put your hand written recipes into the book to add to the traditions. Oh wait! there's more ... there is a space to the side of each recipe in the book to write your own notes ... a perfect place to make Gluten Free conversions! The recipes are all favorites from their own recipe box - how they live today and heirlooms from their family and friends. This cook book is a gift in every sense and is meant to be left out on the counter and used like a scrapbook. I treasure my book!
Quick Fix Gluten Free by Robert Landolphi
Food Lover's Guide to Seattle by Keren Brown
At the Kitchen Table by Greg Atkinson
Girl in the Kitchen by Stephanie Izard and Heather Shouse
I hope you enjoy my Gluten Free Foodies Holiday Shopping Guide 2011- Cook Books - 1st on the list and more ideas on the way! The selections above have been chosen as my favorites and I do not receive monetary incentives for suggesting anything on this list.
I truly love them!
Happy Shopping ...
Yes, it is actually a tradition with me. Once again this year I'm indulging in "Shopping Small and Local". I really enjoy living in the Pacific Northwest. We have such talented artists in our area and I love finding unique gifts for my friends and family. I like to find more personal gifts when I go out. I enjoy the hunting and thinking about the person instead of just finding something in a pile of millions of the same thing.
I live on Bainbridge Island and really love visiting the people who work in the shops along Winslow Way. I love finding pretty handmade scarves and mittens, jewelry and artistic glass plates, sculptures, wall sconces and home furnishings at my friend's store - Danger. I buy gift certificates in the coffee shops and restaurants, iconic island T-shirts from Bay Hay and Feed in Rolling Bay and gift certificates for spa services from Bay Massage and Skin Care in Lynwood Center on the south end of the island.
Hitchcock just opened their new Delicatessen and Charcuterie next to their restaurant. You have to go see the stunning Italian made Espresso machine. Enjoy a really good cup of espresso and buy a gift certificate. Food and drinks are always a great gift!
I also plan on swinging by the Bainbridge Island Farmer’s Market – Winter location at the Eagle Harbor Congregational Church parking lot, corner of Winslow Way and Madison. Eagle Harbor Books is a great place to find your favorite books, some from authors that live in the area. If you love to knit! Churchmouse is the best place to find a gorgeous selection of yarns and teas. Next store is Fork and Spoon Cafe for a quick lunch and great coffee. I must say if you have a wine lover on your list Winslow Way is THE place to find a variety of wine shops. Check out the downtown association for more info and directions.
La Isla always wins the vote for the best Puerto Rican Pernil and Tembleque in Ballard. We also strategically plan the neighborhoods with shops and getting coffee several times throughout the day. Fonte Coffee in downtown and Espresso Vivace in Capital Hill. One don't miss place in the upper Queen Anne neighborhood Chocolopolis a boutique of chocolate! Yes! it is pure heaven! The chocolate aroma swirling about the minute you walk in the door is a treat. Now I have an excuse to go in and find chocolate wonderfulness … holiday gifts! Ah! the sacrifices I make! They sell chocolates from around the world and locally made chocolates. They also sell gift baskets, baking and drinking chocolate too!
Just down the street is El Diablo Coffee Co. stop in for a Mexican Chocolate Mocha.
Yes … we really need all of that coffee to stay warm and keep our mojo going!
My favorite shop in Fremont is Bitters Co. I have talked about this store before but I love love love it! I find the most amazing wonderful gifts that are made from artisans from around the world. There is always something new that catches my eye ... I can't wait to find it this year!
I also love going to see the holiday decorations and shopping the other small towns in the area – Port Townsend , Whidbey Island and Mount Vernon. All of these towns have great little shops to find kitchen gadgets, handmade ornaments and local collectibles.
If there is time in my schedule before the holidays and good weather, I try to get down to Portland, Oregon. I love getting some real Gluten Free Fish and Chips at the Corbett Fish House to fuel me or one of their many Gluten Free bakeries. I love shopping in the Pearl District as well! If you need a Gluten Free snack or supplies there is a great Whole Foods Market there as well. If I really want to treat myself I go to Andina Restaurant … the most amazing and beautiful Peruvian food! I highly recommend making a reservation online. You can always get a gift certificate for a gift too!
Join me this holiday season in avoiding the big crowds and keeping the small businesses thriving! By shopping small and local you will be helping many people in a big way! Don’t forget to give the gift of experiences or services that everyone needs or uses – hair cuts, gym fee or yoga classes, auto repair and detailing, child care, house cleaning, cooking or art classes. It will be so much more memorable! A gift certificate from Whole Foods Market or make up a Gluten Free gift basket is always a great idea too!