Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Rainbow Pancakes for the grandkids - Gluten Free

I was reading one of my favorite blogs The Girl Who Ate Everything and she had these really cute rainbow pancakes. What a great idea! I have a cupboard full of gluten free pancake mix from better batter and grandkids visiting. A simple stop at the grocery store for some food dye = some happy kids!
I used better batter pancake mix and let the kids each put a color in a batch.

Our morning yummies

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Penne Rustica Gluten Free

Last dinner night with just us. Operation see the family starts late tonight. Time for some yummy gluten free comfort food. For me it is always pasta. Please keep in mind when I post these that you may use baco's or any bacon substitute if you are pescatarian or vegetarian. I post the full meat version of my recipe's for my family meat eaters.
Penne Pasta is one of my absolute favorite types of pasta. I love the way it holds the sauce. I don't make it from scratch. It just is too time consuming to shape a hundred little individual tunnels. That is what industrial sized pasta making machines are for. I am very thankful for the gluten free penne I found at sprouts. It is spendy, $3.75 for one 12 ounce box, but worth it for the occasional splurge. You really cannot tell it is gluten free. AT ALL! Schar does a great job!

Penne Rustica Gluten Free
Adapted From Recipezaar

Gratinata sauce
1 teaspoon butter
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon dill
1/2 teaspoon chopped rosemary
1/2 cup marsala cooking wine
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 cups heavy cream

Penne Rustica
1 ounce pancetta or bacon
2 grilled chicken breasts,
12 ounces gluten free penne pasta, cooked
3 Tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon chopped shallot
pinch salt and pepper
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon paprika

1.For Gratinata Sauce: Saute butter, garlic, and rosemary until garlic begins to brown.
2.Add Marsala wine and reduce by one-third.

3.Add remaining ingredients, reduce by half of the original volume.
4.Set aside.
5.For Penne Rustica: Saute pancetta or bacon until it begins to brown.
6.Add butter, and shallots.

7.Add chicken, salt, pepper, and mix thoroughly.

8.Add gratinata sauce and 1/4 cup parmesan cheese.
9.Simmer until sauce thickens.

10.In a large bowl, combine chicken mixture with the cooked pasta.

11.Pour into a large casserole dish or roaster.
12. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup more parmesan cheese and sprinkle with paprika.
13.Bake at 475 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes.

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Strawberry Scones

I have a little bit of my strawberry puree left. I have made my strawberry cake and my strawberry cupcakes so I am going to make strawberry scones with the leftover puree. These are really good if you make clotted cream and top the scones with it and strawberry jam. Yum!

4 cups better batter gluten free all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar, plus additional for sprinkling
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt
3/4 pound cold unsalted butter, diced
4 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup cold heavy cream
3/4 cup puree'd strawberries
1 egg beaten with 2 tablespoons water or milk, for egg wash
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine 4 cups of flour, 2 tablespoons sugar, baking powder, and salt.
Blend in the cold butter at the lowest speed and mix until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. Combine the eggs, strawberries  and heavy cream and quickly add them to the flour and butter mixture. Combine until just blended.  The dough may be a bit sticky.

Dump the dough out onto a well-floured surface and be sure it is well combined. Flour your hands and a rolling pin and roll the dough 3/4-inch thick. You should see lumps of butter in the dough. Cut into squares with a 4-inch plain or fluted cutter, and then cut them in half diagonally to make triangles.
Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Brush the tops with egg wash. Sprinkle with sugar and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the outsides are crisp and the insides are fully baked.
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Monday, June 13, 2011

Hawaiian Chicken Rice Bowl

It is the calm before the storm. Today is Monday. Monday's can be tough for anyone. This Monday is a little different for me. It is the day before all the action starts. See my daughter is graduating High School on Thursday. That means that our home is going to be swarming with friends and relatives for the next week and a half. We are excited! We are blessed to have our 2 other daughters visiting, along with our 3 grand kids. They will be staying with us. The rest of the relatives will be coming and going. I have spent the last few days mulling over what to serve, meal planning, making the grocery list, planning out our activities etc... It takes a lot of preparation. I needed to do it so that I could get the most possible time with everyone.  I won't be blogging much the next 2 weeks, due to all of the festivities and celebrations, but I hope to get a few posts in.

Tonight I am making a yummy easy dish..

Hawaiian Chicken Bowl

3 pounds of boneless skinless chicken
2 cups gluten free soy sauce  OR Bragg Amino Acids
2 cups water
2 cups brown sugar
1 bunch of green onions, chopped
1/4 cup of a white onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon of sesame oil
1 (13.5 ounce) can of coconut milk

Trim chicken of any visible fat. Mix soy sauce or amino acids, water, brown sugar, onions, garlic, sesame oil, and
Coconut milk in a large bowl. Use about 3/4 of the mixture to marinade chicken for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Reserve the rest of the marinade in an airtight container in the fridge.
Grill chicken at a low heat so that the marinade does not burn for 5 minutes per side or until done.
Serve over a platter of coconut rice and garnish with green onions drizzle remaining marinade that you had reserved.
Goes really nicely with some freshly cut pineapple.
Naturally Gluten free... Enjoy

We all ate it so fast, I forgot to take a picture. But it was good. There were no leftovers.
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Lower Calorie Lemonade

My lemon tree exploded. Well not really, it just decided to mass produce. This is a nice refreshing recipe, perfect for the summer. As I posted earlier Agave is a liquid sugar with a low glycemic index, and less calories than sugar. You cannot taste the difference. It is the perfect ingredient to use in summer drinks. Give it a try.

Homemade Lemonade

1 cup lemon juice
2/3 cup agave syrup
6 cups water
Sliced lemons and mint for garnish

1. Combine the lemon juice, agave and water in a pitcher.
2. Stir to combine.
3. Pour over ice and serve.

*If you want an adult drink add 1 shot vodka to your glass. Homemade Hard Lemonade =)

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Agave instead of Sugar

This one is for those of you that don't understand what Agave Nectar is. For those of you wanting to cut some calories, but don't want to lose your sweet tooth... here is how to do it.

In one Tablespoon Sugar there is 75 calories.
Each Tablespoon of Agave contains 60 calories.
However Agave Nectar is sweeter so you use less Agave than you do Sugar. Therefore if you cook with Agave you drop the calorie count by a large amount.

For each cup of white sugar replaced, use 2/3 of a cup of agave and reduce other liquids by 1/4 cup. Because the moisture content of Brown Sugar is higher than that of white sugar, liquids may not have to be reduced as much when substituting agave nectar.

Agave syrup may cause baked items to brown more quickly, so reduce oven temperatures by 25°F is and increase baking time slightly.

Tomorrow I am making lemonade with fresh lemons from my tree out back. I am going to use agave instead of sugar. All the sweetness with 1/2 the calories. =)

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Friday, June 10, 2011

Chicken Piccata

What a week. It was so busy and hectic and not in a good way. The end of the school year brings on a lot of stress and emotions for my kids and in turn, the house isn't so peaceful. I am happy to say that my daughter is officially done with high school. Her graduation is next Thursday, but she is done with all school work and now it is just graduation practice and so forth. My son finished his last day of school today. I am very proud of them both. It is a hard thing to stay focused, especially at the end of the year.

I got some fresh free range chicken today, and some fresh lemons off the tree, so I am going back to one of my old recipes. Chicken Piccata. For this recipe I am using the better batter gluten free seasoned flour. You can use any gluten free flour blend of your own and season it with salt, pepper, italian seasoning... but all that adds up and it is actually a lot cheaper to just buy the flour pre-seasoned.

4 skinless boneless organic chicken breasts butterflied and cut in half.
Better Batter gluten free seasoned flour OR (1/2 cup flour, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp pepper, 1 tsp italian seasoning)
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
10 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
2/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup capers
2/3 cup fresh parsley
Lemons sliced for garnish

Dredge Chicken in seasoned flour mixture and shake off excess. I find it easiest to just put it all in a ziplock bag and then shake it. I only used about 1/2 cup of the flour mixture.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, melt 4 tablespoons of butter with 6 tablespoons olive oil. When butter and oil start to sizzle, add 4 pieces of chicken and cook for 3 minutes. When chicken is browned, flip and cook other side for 3 minutes.
Remove and transfer to a plate even though it won't be cooked all the way through. Repeat the above process until all the chicken is cooked. Transfer all chicken to a plate or pan.

Into the pan you browned the chicken in, add lemon juice, stock and capers, Return to the stove and bring to a boil, scraping up browned bits from the pan for flavor.
 Return all the chicken to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes to finish cooking.
Remove Chicken to platter. Add remaining butter to sauce and whisk vigorously. Pour sauce over chicken and garnish with parsley and lemon. I think this dish is best served over my parmesan garlic mashed potatoes.
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