Sunday, March 29, 2009

Gluten-Free Bread

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If you haven't noticed, I kind of have a thing for bread :). Toast with jam is one of my favorite simple snacks. After about 4 tries (I didn't post anything about those 4 tries), I've finally come up with a bread recipe that reminds me a whole lot of honey wheat bread in flavor (see recipe at the bottom of post)! The flour concoction consists of everything from almond meal to corn meal; it might seem a bit strange to see corn meal in a bread recipe, but it totally works here! The texture on this bread is right on too, and the best part? It toasts well! Woohoo!

Gluten-Free French Bread
based on this gluteny recipe
(click photos to enlarge :)

3/4 cup Ener-G Potato Starch
3/4 cup Ener-G Tapioca Flour
1 1/2 cups white rice flour
2 1/4 tsp xanthan gum
2 1/2 tsp yeast
1 cup water
2 TBSP Sugar
3/4 tsp sea salt
reserved 1/8 cup water (and about 1-2 TBSP reserved warm water)
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
3 tsp cornmeal
  1. Put your oven on the 'warm' setting.
  2. Proof the warm water (1 cup!) with the yeast and sugar!!! (warm up the water in the microwave for 30 secs)
  3. First combine all of the flours/starches with the xanthan gum and yeast. Mix well, then begin adding the reserved water slowly, folding it in and kneading the dough as you go.
  4. Continue kneading for 5 minutes, add a bit more warm water if it is too dry (add 1 tbsp at a time -- though you don't want it too wet, it should be firm). Now add 1 tsp of olive oil and knead for 1 minute more then set aside.
  5. Boil about 3 cups of water, and add that hot water to an oven-safe dish; put the water-filled, oven-safe dish on the last oven rack.
  6. Now shape your dough into a torpedo shape, place it on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, and drizzle with 1 tsp more olive oil. Rub the olive oil over the surface evenly, then sprinkle the dough with the corn meal.
  7. Turn your oven off, then let the bread rise in the oven for an hour. Now set the oven to 375, leave the bread in there (even while preheating) to bake for about 20-30 minutes (I don't remember the exact time :/); it will be slightly golden on top when ready.
Now, the french bread recipe still needs a little tweaking. I mean, I'm not gonna lie, it's pretty darn good fresh outta the oven; it even smells heavenly while it's baking, just like french bread! But the next day, it was like a brick! So tough and heavy, but I guess that's the case with 'regular' french bread, too. My hubby said I should still post the recipe, because it was pretty yummy, so I'll share it with you -- just be sure you gobble it up the first day.

Also, I apologize for not noting the baking time! I sometimes get so caught-up in the baking that I forget to write down the details (even the important ones ;). I made a somewhat small loaf, so 3 folks can easily enjoy this with dinner the first day -- I recommend serving it warm, right outta the oven, pretty much. You could even make a torpedo sandwich with it (ooh how I miss those things. They are sooo good!)

Gluten-Free Maple Cider Sandwich Bread

Tastes like "honey wheat" bread but it's gluten-free.

See Gluten-Free Maple Cider Sandwich Bread on Key Ingredient.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Gluten-Free Garnet Yam Honey Cake with Sticky Plum Sauce

When it comes right down to it...
Dirty dishes are a blessing.
Having leftovers 3 days in a row isn't so bad.
Eating beans instead of a savory steak for dinner really is enough.
I am far beyond blessed. Some don't have 'bean nights', a sink full of dishes, or leftovers made of leftovers.

What's worse? Some are the growing little ones that will determine what happens to our world in 10, 20, 30 years... that is, if they can make it that far. In a country where food blogging is what we do for fun ;), malnutrition and starvation aren't issues we usually face on a day to day basis. There is something we're all familiar with, though. You know what it is. Love. We're all hungry for that.

Meet a physical and emotional need while doing one of your favorite things? Yep, that's right. The first part of that question should be the incentive. Get involved in this fundraiser. If you want to see the recipe, find out how by visiting that site, you'll be glad you did... and so will someone else.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Vegetarian Mandarin Orange Lo Mein

This Chicken Lo Mein recipe from sounded tasty and had good reviews, but I didn't like how much sugar it contained and I also wanted to make a completely vegetarian I changed it up by about 95% :).

The results? A fresh and healthy lo mein dish that's light but loaded with veggies; I served it with a sweet and spicy chili sauce that provides a good kick. The chili sauce does contain sugar, but the lo mein (made with fettuccine rice noodles) is sweetened with the juice from a small can of mandarin oranges (I used the ones from Whole Foods that are stored in pear juice). I also tossed in a few almonds and tofu for protein.

So the blog got another make-over! When I was in kindergarten, I used to change my clothes about 3-4 times a day, just because I got tired of wearing the same thing all day :P. I thought that habit died off before first grade, but it's returned! Now it applies to blog templates :).

Vegetarian Mandarin Orange Lo Mein

…made with tofu and sweetened with mandarin orange/pear juice

See Vegetarian Mandarin Orange Lo Mein on Key Ingredient.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Pozole & Honest Scrap Meme!

A few years ago, when I was living in California, I spent some time trying to write down some of my grandma's recipes while she cooked. It wasn't easy, I don't even know if I've ever seen a measuring spoon in her kitchen! But now that I've been cooking for a few years, I don't feel so intimidated at the thought of replicating one of her recipes without the exact measurements :). I gave her a call a few days ago because I was in the mood for some of her pozole, mexican comfort food at its best - think of a hearty and slightly spicy hominy/pork stew.

A long, long time ago, my grandparents actually owned and operated a Mexican restaurant in Southern California, where my grandmother made yummy food like pozole :). My aunt said that the only reason why it closed was because they received too much business and my family couldn't keep up with all of the customers!

My grandma lives clear across the country, but it's nice to know that I can give her a call, then, in no time, cook up something that reminds me of her. She gave me a quick run-through of how to make pozole; I used all of the ingredients she told me to, then added the cumin and cilantro, for extra flavor. (I didn't have the fresh tomatoes she usually adds; she also makes hers with chicken and pork chops, instead of pork loin.)

The results? Pretty tasty! I was so happy when my hubby said it tasted very traditional - I am thrilled that I finally have a 'hard copy' of her recipe; I will definitely make this again, just this way!


My grandmother's pozole finally captured in a recipe!

See Pozole on Key Ingredient.

I almost forgot about this Meme! I was tagged by my new blogging buddy, Monica, over at Lick the Bowl Good! She has some awesome photos and delectable carbs, all things tasty and sweet!

The rules of the award:

  • Choose a minimum of 7 blogs that you find brilliant in content or design.
  • Show the 7 winners names and links on your blog, and leave a comment informing them that they were prized with "Honest Scrap." Well, there's no prize, but they can keep the nifty icon.
  • List at least 10 honest things about yourself.


  1. I haven't eaten brussels sprouts since I was 10 because they left me scarred :P, I didn't like their bitter flavor! Send me some good recipes, this needs to change!
  2. I have a strange collection of music on my laptop that I like to organize into random playlists. For instance, I have a Happy Mix and even a Twilight Mix (<---embarrassing :P!)
  3. I feel guilty about spending money on myself, except for when it comes to food :D.
  4. Monica made a comment about make-up on 4 and so will I :). I hate make-up; the older I get, the more I despise it and the less I wear it. I'm also done with nail polish and long nails!
  5. Things that make me happy: a fridge full of food and cant-breathe-they're-so-tight-and-warm hugs.
  6. I usually am horrible with names but I remember numbers, even though I hate math and love words!
  7. I used to love the city, now I'm a fan of the quite/peaceful solitude that comes with being far from it (somewhere green with lots of trees and fresh, crisp air). I love big city grocery stores, though!
  8. I don't like bracelets and rings, but I love earrings and necklaces - the former always get in the way when I'm cooking, like long nails and nail polish! (Shhh...don't tell! One time when I first started cooking - when I had long nails, real ones - I cut one off when I was chopping onions and couldn't find it... :P)
  9. I really enjoy snacking on baked apples and baked sweet potatoes, I eat them almost every day. My husband and I go through 5 pounds of apples every 2 weeks. It has kept the doctor away, I haven't had a cold in nearly 2 years!
  10. I adore vegetables but can only eat them cooked.
I'll pass this along to these 7 blogs:
Hungry Girl Por Vida
Shweet and Savory
Life is Still Sweet
Hold the Gluten
Gluten Free in Cleveland
La Bella Cook

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Creamy Cannellini Spinach Soup and Biscuits

Soup and biscuits: what we've been eating a ton of in order to survive our first crazy-cold Northeastern winter. Well, I like stews too :). I found a recipe in Donna Klein's book, The Gluten-Free Vegetarian Kitchen, but didn't have all of the ingredients. I changed up the recipe, even added in chicken, so it's definitely not vegetarian anymore. It is beany, full of protein, and only has a tiny bit of dairy, just enough to make it creamy (I used potato flour to make it a little thicker).

If you're gonna have soup, you're gonna need a biscuit, that's the way it should always be...

More biscuits, Sophie?! Yes, I know, I am addicted to carbs... but good ones, especially those awaiting a strawberry jam-smothering. This is why I've been trying to perfect gluten-free biscuits without using a ton o' butter. Applesauce works wonders in gluten-free products, it makes them extra moist. I didn't have this much luck with applesauce when I used it for 'regular' baking (other than muffins), but gf products tend to be a little dry so that's why it works here! YESSSS it does!

You can't tell these are gluten-free. Promise!

Applesauce Biscuits
Makes 6

1/4 cup millet flour
2/3 cup white rice flour
1/4 cup potato starch
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1/4 cup corn meal
3 tbsp brown rice flour
3 tbsp melted butter
2 tbsp apple sauce
1/2 tsp sea salt
3/4 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 cup and 1 1/2 tbsp milk
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda

Just mix it all up, dry ingredients first, and use a big ol' ice cream scoop to measure out about 6 biscuits, then place on a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

How long to bake? Oh nooo... I forgot to note this! I'd say bake at 350 for about 10-12 minutes. (Please check on them at 10 minutes, just to make sure :P...)

Creamy Cannellini Spinach Soup

Based on Donna Klein's Greek-Style Spinach, White Bean, and ...

See Creamy Cannellini Spinach Soup on Key Ingredient.