All posts filed under: Gluten Free

Party with a Pretty Dress – Epilogue

It was a beautiful day… The End. Let me back up a bit The morning after the last wedding post, I get a message: “Where’s the end of the story?” “You’re not going to leave us there in sub-zero temps and gale force winds, are you?”“What about the cake? The desserts? The Midnight Breakfast…..” Actually, I fully intended to come back and do the last who ha on the wedding. Only, my fridge was awash in wedding food… and I’d kinda crispy crittered myself on the marathon cooking jag… and Jane was already tired of eating things she really didn’t want. … so I waited a week before I even started to think about this last trip to the beach. And then I got involved in fifteen other things. But before I get to my own contributions, I’m all for paying it forward. I want to acknowledge some of the other people and things that came together in just a great big ball of good karma to make this event such a success. Photos –  http://www.dianedouglass.com/ The above …

Back to the Beach – Eggplant Parmesan

The Rehearsal Dinner The basic etiquette for invitations to the rehearsal dinner are: The Bride and Groom – easy… Check! Their respective Parents – okay… Check! Bridesmaids and spouses (slash) dates – Check and check! ditto for the Groomsmen – Big ol’ Check! and all  of the out-of-town guests – Ch * * … umm…   hmm… that’s everyone….. The original plan was to swanky up the covered area at the beach house with tivoli lights, checkered tablecloths, and chainti bottles and turn it into an Italian restaurant for the night – Serving up trays of Chicken Parm, Eggplant Parm, Heaping bowls of Pasta, Romaine Salad,  and a kind of Spumoni Trifle… when we were talking about 20 to 30 people. When the numbers for the wedding started growing, it became a scramble to figure out what to do with all those people, because – I could go ahead and cook for them, but it would have been a push, with my one helper, to have pulled it off without a hiccup. (You remember what the weather did …

Simple Dinner Sunday – Mushroom & Eggplant Lasagna

I’ll readily admit it – I’m a carnivore. Meat, meat, meat makes my world go round. And, if this were only all about me, I’d probably only write about meaty food. But it’s not. I’ve got friends that are vegetarian, some that are vegan. There are the lactose, tree nut, gluten, casein, fungi, dairy, GMO, HFCS intolerant… so it takes more than a pile of hamburger meat to make a banquet. And, since the garden is kicking out the goods in high output these days – I’ve got a lot of produce to find ways to use. My thinking was – to finely chop eggplant and porcini mushrooms together, season them with fennel and seasonings (like Italian sausage and add it to a pasta sauce…. Taste-wise, it works. But, eh – textural wise, not the greatest mouth feel. So the next option was use it as the “meat” filling in a lasagna. Dinq! This recipe is Lactose Free, but not Dairy Free – I still haven’t been able to find a suitable substitution for Parmesan or sharper cheeses….yet. The Gluten Free …

Black and Blue Clafouti

First, a little housekeeping. I know I get quite a few people visiting from search engines that may not want to read the long and somewhat boring involved stories that accompany the recipes. Sadly, I understand… but I’m not changing the style of what I’m writing just to please one small sector of readership. I didn’t start this just to be a regurgitation of recipes – there are plenty of compendium sites out there for that. I have stories to tell, I have things I want said… and sometimes, I just want to rant. I would like to think the journey to the recipe is the more interesting travel, and hope that any visiting reader would want to come along for the ride… Be that as it may. Beginning with this entry I will be including a “Jump Forward” somewhere at the lead of the post to take you directly to the recipe part of article. Fair warning, the text of the jump will change to suit my sense of humor and my mood at that …

Sea of Love – Turtles, and a little salt

It all started with a recent outing to Helen, Georgia. I had stopped in at Hansel & Gretel’s Fudge Shop (honestly, that’s the name…) because..well, really just because I smelled heavy, dark cocoa… and I needed a sugar fix. In the shop, back in the very last display case, were three trays of dark chocolate and milk chocolate Turtles with Sea Salt. I really get off on opposite parings – sweet / salty, bitter / tangy, sour / savory – and I had enjoyed a box of some salted caramels that I had been given as a thank-you gift. So the little salt sprinkled knobs of chocolate called to me from behind the glass. Sea Turtles drying on the rack They were…ok. I expected them to be saltier. I really wanted to have layers of sweet / salty flow over my tongue awakening my taste buds… I didn’t get that. I got a lot of chocolate with a little salt on top. all packaged up I came away from Helen thinking I can do that …

Breakfast of Champions

No, it isn’t a delicately crafted breakfast casserole. No, it isn’t some high protein, uber high fiber, tasteless cardboard bar… It’s a waffle. As a matter of fact, it’s a Gluten Free Waffle. Don’t you dare turn up your nose… Don’t get the wrong idea with me pushing a GF waffle. Unless you are gluten intolerant or have been diagnosed with Celiac or Hashimoto’s Disease, I do not sanction living gluten free… just Gluten Reduced. It’s become one of those things (like HFCS and Crystalline Fructose) that has become an inexpensive additive for a number of manufactured products. It’s difficult to get away from it even if you have no specific tolerance issues. It’s in your salad dressings, condiments, cereals, breads, as well as a good many over the counter meds, lipsticks and balms, lotions and shampoos. It’s everywhere. And while ten years ago, the numbers originally hovered around 1 in 3000 for Celiac, recent studies have dropped the counts to 1 in 100 for allergic issues and even as low as 1 in 10 for gluten specific intolerance. …

The Beach Wedding (or the) Party with a Pretty Dress

The days are numbered, the accepts and regrets have all been counted, and the complete packing of my kitchen for the 6 hour drive to the gulf coast has begun…. When I agreed to do the wedding, I knew it was going to be a challenge to design a menu that: A. Could be prepped days in advance B. Would have all entree items essentially grilled to order on the beach C. Would be something very different than standard fare D. Would take into consideration the laundry list of special dietary restrictions of a good many of the guests. (Many of the party are Gluten Intolerant – some are Lactose Intolerant, the groom is allergic to corn, there will be a handful of pescatarians, and more than a few vegetarians.) And between a crisis in my own family and brewing health concerns with my clients, a couple of false starts with some of the entrees, and an ever-growing guest list – getting everything locked and loaded (so to speak) with the menu has been a roller coaster ride …

Gluten Free / Dairy Free “Sour Cream” Brownies

There is a couple I know that each time we talk, it seems there is yet another food ingredient that gets added to their ever-growing list of allergies. I know from allergies. You’ve read in the past that later in my dad’s life, he became sensitive, allergic and down right toxic to several common everyday foods. It became a constant and vigilant effort to read every ingredient for the assaulting foods in his list just to make sure that some innocuous corn by-product or nut wasn’t going to shut down his neuro transmitters and transport him into a near Alzheimer state. It became necessary to create work-arounds for a lot of the things he liked to eat, because I am a firm believer that just because you “can’t” have something you love, doesn’t mean that I “shouldn’t” find a way to make something else taste like it. When Tracy and Ken let me know that their food allergies were on the rise, I felt it was my duty to find ways to make their life …

All That Lemony Goodness #6 – Chicken Piccata

 Pucker Up Buttercup! Back when I first started going out to dinner (as an adult), I got hooked on veal piccata. Wherever I went, whatever the city, I scoured the menu searching for those three magic words – Butter – Lemon – Capers .. the trifecta of culinary nirvana. I didn’t’ realize that I had become so fixated on it, until I until people began to cancel dinner dates…the restaurants they knew don’t have veal piccata on the menu “We know how you get….” This Spring,  while I was spending time as a guest chef at the beach, I was going through my usual Q&A as to their likes and dislikes. And as they are ticking off the list … (beef, tuna, shrimp, blah…blah…Butter… blah) admittedly, I tend to zone out (cress, almondblah,zzzzzz, Capers, zzzz, Lemon..  (huh?)) The trifecta! “How do you feel about veal piccata?” “Well, we don’t do veal…you know.. (baby cow faces), but chicken would be good.” Now, poultry in general, is as good as veal in any situation. Once in the …

Banana Nut Muffins

My mom always used Clara’s recipe whenever she made banana bread. It was the perfect density, the right amount of heft and just an all around good banana bread. Somewhere down the road, Jane came across the idea to add a tablespoon of scotch to the mix. It’s amazing what just that little amount of scotch can do to elevate that full banana flavor to really wonderful heights. Now that I’ve gotten hold of the recipe, I’ve made an additional adjustment by grinding the nuts to a coarse meal. For a muffin, I prefer that all the textures are homogeneous to give you a better bite across the muffin without obstacles in the way. And considering the density issues common with gluten free breads, I felt the muffin would be a good candidate, so I’ve also played around with a gluten free version. Now you don’t have any excuse for not making some. Clara’s Banana Bread & Banana Nut Muffins Makes 1 Loaf -or- 18 Muffins Ingredients 1/2 Cup Butter or Margarine (if you are …