Monday, December 26, 2016

Cherry Walnut Shortbread Bars

A good friend of mine, Mary, shared this recipe with me. I thought I would try it out, as I love maraschino cherries and shortbread. They are delicious and I want to start making them every Christmas. Enjoy!

Cherry Walnut Shortbread Bars

Shortbread base:
2 1/4 cups GF flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup butter
Cherry walnut mixture:
2 eggs
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (I ground mine up very fine)
1/2 cup chopped Maraschino cherries
1 TBSP butter
1 cup powdered sugar
Cherry juice to blend
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make the shortbread by mixing the flour, sugar, and butter and press into a 13"x9" pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden.
Next, make the cherry walnut mixture by combining the eggs, brown sugar, salt, baking powder, and vanilla. Next, add the walnuts and cherries, then pour over the shortbread crust. Bake for an additional 25 minutes.

Let the bars cool completely before frosting. Make the frosting by combining the butter, powdered sugar, and enough of the cherry juice to make a spreadable frosting. Spread onto the cooled bars, then cut into pieces. Enjoy!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Oven Roasted Potatoes

I have tried other oven roasted potatoes. But this one is the best yet! My husband said so and so will you. 

Oven Roasted Potatoes

Image may contain: food and indoor
Oven roasted potatoes with sausage blinchiki

4 Lbs of potatoes (peeled or unpeeled), cut into 1/2 inch pieces
4 Tbsp melted butter
4 Tbsp oil
4 tsp dried parsley
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt
1 tsp of freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp of garlic powder

Preheat oven to 425°F. Place potatoes in a greased jelly roll pan.

Stir together dried seasonings in a bowl. Place potatoes in a bowl. Stir in dry ingredients. Put on jelly roll pan. 

Stir together melted butter and oil. Pour over potatoes evenly. 

Place in oven and and bake, stirring every 15 minutes (so they evenly crisp and don't stick to pan), until potatoes are tender and starting to brown in spots and get crispy. This will take about 45-55 min.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Cinnamon Rolls

I tried making gluten free cinnamon rolls two years ago. I essentially used gluten free flour in place of regular wheat flour in one of my pre-gluten-free-days-recipes. It failed miserably. I accepted the loss - and since cinnamon rolls are WORK to make, I didn't intend to try making them again. Wellllll, my husband LOVES cinnamon rolls and with all of this cold weather, I thought I would attempt them again - so away to Pinterest I went and I found this recipe! Voila! And now I'm sharing it with you. Enjoy!

Cinnamon Rolls

1/4 cup water, lukewarm
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast, 1 package
1 3/4 cups whole milk, room temperature
2 large eggs, well beaten, at room temperature
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
4 1/2 - 5 cups gluten-free flour (I used this recipe)

1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened

2 ½ cups powdered sugar
½ cup whipping cream
1/3 cup milk
½ tsp maple extract
1 tsp vanilla extract


Fill a small bowl with ¼ cup lukewarm water then sprinkle in the yeast. Add a small pinch of sugar then stir until water and yeast are well combined. Set the mixture aside for about 5 minutes—the yeast should start to bubble and become foamy.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the room temperature milk, eggs, melted butter, sugar and salt then mix until well incorporated. Stir in the bubbling yeast mixture then begin adding the flour, starting with about 4½ cups. Mix until well combined then add additional flour by ¼ cup until the dough is firm enough to handle. The dough will be much softer than regular bread dough—but you must be able to roll it out and handle it gently without the dough being too sticky or loose. Once the dough achieves the correct consistency, cover the bowl with plastic wrap then place it in a warm spot to rise for about 1 hour.

After an hour, the dough should have nearly doubled in size. Generously dust a work surface with gluten-free flour then turn the dough out onto the floured surface. Sprinkle the surface with a little bit more of the gluten-free flour then roll the dough into a rectangle about 18" wide and 18" deep. In a small bowl, stir together the brown sugar, granulated sugar and cinnamon until well combined then set aside.

Spread the 6 Tbsp of butter evenly across the entire surface of the dough then cover the butter with the cinnamon sugar mixture. Roll the dough up jellyroll style until you have an 18"-long cylinder. Cut the dough every 1½" to yield about 16 rolls.

Spray a 9" x 13" baking dish with non-stick spray then space the rolls evenly inside the dish. Cover with plastic wrap then place in a warm spot to rise for about 1 more hour.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and set out the ingredients for the icing so they can achieve room temperature.

When the rolls have once again doubled in size, bake them for about 25−30 minutes. Mix up frosting and then frost when the rolls have cooled a few minutes. Enjoy!

Monday, December 5, 2016

Turkey Pot Pie

A few years ago, we were invited over to Peter & Liz's house for dinner the day after Thanksgiving. Peter had whipped up some turkey pot pie and I was skeptical, to say the least. I had never eaten ANY kind of pot pie, so I was a bit nervous that I would hate it. Instead, I. Loved. It. It was savory and oh-so-good. Fast forward to last month, I had TONS of leftovers from our Thanksgiving feast. I thought I would give the whole turkey pot pie thing a go. And my family raved with the results. I figured that I had better type it all up here so I can find it again next year, for this will likely become a tradition for my family. Enjoy!

This pan is BIG. Keep that in mind. This recipe is formulated to feed a crowd. 

Turkey Pot Pie

Firstly, let's make the crust. I only did a crust on the top. I found the recipe here.
3 cups GF flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup cold butter 
2 eggs
5 tablespoons cold water
1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar 
dash of dried thyme
1. Combine the flour and salt in large bowl. Use a pastry cutter or 2 forks to gradually work the cold butter into the flour until it resembles small pebbles, this should take about 3-4 minutes.

2. Lightly beat the egg with the fork and add it to the mixture. Next, and the old water and vinegar and stir until combined. (This can be made ahead of time and refrigerated at this point)

3. When ready to use the dough, cover a clean surface with a small amount of flour, and in the thyme and knead the dough to mix it in. Then, begin to roll out the dough 1 inch larger than the pie pan.

Secondly, you need to get out all the fillings that you have leftover from your Thanksgiving. I had mashed potatoes, turkey (cut into chunks), green bean casserole, and corn. I would recommend not adding anything sweet, like cranberry sauce or sweet potato casserole. 

Get a big casserole pan out - or two 9x13 inch pans - spray them down with a non-stick spray. Start layering the various leftovers in the pan. If you don't have enough leftovers, you can always cook up some veggies and put them in the pan. 

Now, you need a gravy to pour over the veggies/leftovers in the pan. I had a lot of gravy leftover from Thanksgiving dinner, but I wanted to add a cream sauce to the gravy, so I went with this one that I found here.

Creamy Sauce
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) of butter
1/4 cup GF flour
2 cups GF chicken broth or stock
1 GF chicken bouillon cube
1 cup heavy cream
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 teaspoon salt
black pepper, for seasoning


Melt the butter in a medium pot over medium heat. Stir in the flour and whisk until mixed up.

Pour in the chicken broth and stir. Add the chicken bouillon cube and stir. The mixture should start to look like a creamy gravy, but still runny.

Pour in the cream and stir. Allow the mixture to cook over low heat, for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, so the mixture can thicken. Season with thyme, salt and pepper. Be sure to taste it and make sure it is seasoned good! 

At this point I poured in the gravy that I had leftover. If you don't have any leftover gravy, you will want to double the creamy sauce recipe, so the turkey pot pie won't be too dry. 

NOW - you want to pour the creamy sauce/gravy mixture over the filling in the pan. Then top with the crust on stop. Bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes, until the mixture is bubbly and the crust is golden brown. Let the pie cool for 10 minutes before eating (this will help the mixture to thicken some as well). There are a lot of steps - but the results are WORTH it!

Corn Bread Muffins

These are delicious! I found the recipe on Pinterest here. I usually double the recipe and serve them with crockpot beans and shredded cheese. The leftovers are great for breakfast, too.

Corn Bread Muffins

½ cup oil
⅔ cup granulated sugar
1½ Tablespoons honey
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup yellow cornmeal
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 cup gluten free flour
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
½ cup diced green onions
Frozen corn

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Grease or line the insides of your muffin tin or pan. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, stir by hand or mix on low speed, butter, sugar and honey together. Add eggs and buttermilk, stir or increase speed to medium-low until well mixed. Add cornmeal, salt and baking soda. Once this is well mixed, add the flour and then stir or mix just until the flour disappears.
Sprinkle the cheese over the entire mixture to prevent the cheese from clumping together.
Add the green onions and frozen corn and stir with a rubber spatula until mixed throughout.
Divide batter equally between the cups, filling almost to the top. This batter will fill 12 regular muffin tins, or 6 jumbo muffins, or can be placed in an 8-x 8" square pan.
Bake for 25 minutes. Prick the center of one muffin and make sure it comes out clean. If not clean, bake for about 3 more minutes.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Chicken Lazone

This recipe was a find on Pinterest. And it was an instant hit with my family. My husband may have mentioned that our daughter should learn it by heart. And so should you. 

Photo found here

Chicken Lazone
2 lbs of gluten free spaghetti
4 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, sliced into 1 inch thick slices
4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
4 Tablespoons of chicken broth
4 cloves of fresh garlic, minced
4 teaspoons of cornstarch
8 Tablespoons butter (divided)
4 cups heavy cream or Half/Half
4 tsp garlic powder
4 tsp onion powder
2 tsp chili powder
4 teaspoons Parsley
2 tsp pepper
2 tsp paprika
2 tsp salt
2 tsp Adobo 

1. In a large bowl, take your chicken and coat them evenly with all seasonings, set aside.
2. In large skillet, melt only HALF of the butter over medium  heat, add minced garlic, olive oil, chicken broth and the seasoned chicken, flipping to slightly brown both sides - ­heat until fully cooked.
3. Pour the half/half OR cream, cornstarch and remaining butter into the skillet, mix lightly until cornstarch is fully incorporated.
4. Add the remaining butter and mix until melted.
5. Reduce the heat and let simmer until the sauce thickens, about 5 minutes

6. In a large pot of salted water, bowl pasta until 'al dente' ­ drain well.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Gingerbread Pancakes

My  kids wanted pancakes for dinner tonight and asked if there were any Christmas-themed pancakes, and I immediately thought of gingerbread pancakes! I found this recipe and we were off and running! I substituted some GF flour for this recipe and it needed zero adjustments! I have found that most pancake recipes require added milk to get the correct consistency. Enjoy!

Gingerbread Pancakes

6 cups flour
2 tablespoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons coarse salt
4 teaspoons ground ginger
4 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
6 large beaten eggs
2/3 cup molasses
6 cups buttermilk

For the batter, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Add eggs, molasses, and buttermilk and stir until just combined. Cook pancakes on a hot griddle.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Best Homemade Gluten Free Pizza Crust

I found this recipe on Pinterest and we were thrilled with the results. I have tried about 3 other recipes prior to this one, but I couldn't have imagined how good this one would be! I'm so glad I gave it a try!

My son, Calvin, showing his pizza - topped with smoked sausage, cheese, and corn. 

My son, Keith, made his pizza dairy-free and he was asking to make pizza again the next day. It was a hit!

Best Homemade Gluten Free Pizza Crust

2 1/3 cup gluten free all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading the dough
1 envelope fast acting dry yeast
1 tsp kosher salt
1 1/2 cups warm water
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp sugar

In a medium mixing bowl, combine warm water, sugar, and yeast. Allow to sit on the counter for 10 minutes, or until the yeast “blooms” (foam will start to form on the surface).

Add flour and salt to the water.
On a floured surface, knead the dough until a nice ball is formed.

In another clean mixing bowl, cover the dough ball with the olive oil (making sure to cover the entire ball).

Cover the bowl with a towel.

Let the dough rise in a warm area in the kitchen for 2 hours,

After two hours, punch the dough down, cover and allow to rise for another 30 minutes.

On a Silpat or parchment paper-lined baking sheet, spread out your dough with a spoon (you can either make two round pizzas or one large rectangular pizza or 3-4 individual-sized pizzas) - the dough is very soft, like thick cake batter. Don't worry - it bakes nicely!

Top with pizza sauce and toppings. 

Bake at 400°F for 30 minutes (about 18 for individual pizzas), or until the edges are browned and your cheese is bubbly.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Oatmeal Cookie Bars (dairy free)

These are gluten-free and dairy free. Simply good.

Oatmeal Cookie Bars (dairy free)
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup oil
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
3 cups oats
2 cups gluten-free flour

Blend sugars and oil together. Add in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the rest of the ingredients. Mix together. Spray 9 x 13" pan and pour in cookie dough, spreading it out evenly (dough is thick).

Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until done.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Ham Potato Corn Chowder

This recipe takes some work, but everyone who sampled this recipe only raved about it...including a friend who stopped by the day afterward and had it for lunch. It is THAT good. I altered this from the original recipe and made it gluten free. I hope you enjoy.

delicious potato and corn chowder with ham
Photo found here.

Ham Potato Corn Chowder
3 thick cut slices of bacon (chopped)
1 ham steak (cubed)
1 medium yellow onion (chopped fine)
2 garlic cloves (minced)
(3) 10 oz. cans of sweet corn (drained)
8 oz. original cream cheese (room temp)
1 can condensed cream of celery soup* (gluten free recipe below)
1/2 cup white grape juice
4 cups water
2 tablespoons Herbs de Provence (dry spice)
2-3 chicken bouillon cubes
3 bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste
about 2 tablespoons of butter
about 6 large red skin potatoes (diced into bite sized pieces)

In a large soup pot, melt about two tablespoons butter on medium-high heat. Add in your chopped bacon and render the fat from the bacon, stirring often with a wooden spoon.

Once the bacon looks cooked through and crispy, and you have a good amount of bacon fat in your pot, add in the white grape juice to scrape up the bits from the bottom of the pot. Add your chopped onion and garlic, and cook for 2-3 minutes. Stir often.

Now add in your ham and corn and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Stir often.Add in your cream cheese, cream of celery soup, and give everything a stir. Lower heat to low setting, add in your Herb de Provence, bay leaves, chicken bouillon cubes, about a teaspoon of salt, and fresh ground pepper, and 4 cups of water. Cover and cook for about 30 minutes on low (**about half way through, remove lid and taste for seasonings. Since the bacon and ham are salty we don’t want to add too much salt, but you may need more, so taste and adjust salt and pepper if needed)

In a separate large pot, boil some water. Add potato chunks and boil until soft, about 15 minutes. Drain and add to the other pot. Stir and serve. 

*Homemade cream of celery soup*
¾ cup finely-chopped celery
1 tablespoon canola or vegetable oil
8-ounces 2% evaporated milk
1 teaspoon onion powder (can substitute 1 tablespoon chopped onion)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
⅛ teaspoon white pepper
¼ teaspoon celery salt or table salt
Pinch of sugar

Saute celery (and onion if substituting for powder) in hot oil in skillet over medium heat.
When vegetables are softened, add milk, then whisk in remaining ingredients. Stir constantly and cook gently until thickened.
I found this recipe here

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Perfect Potato Soup (Dairy free option)

I'm always looking for more potato soup recipes to try. I came across this one and it was a big hit with my whole family! My son, Keith, was recently diagnosed as lactose intolerant. I'm not going to lie - this has been tricky, as I love me some dairy. I realized that this recipe worked out because there's a time towards the end where I can scoop some soup out into a bowl for Keith before adding the yummy dairyness for the rest of us. And Keith LOVED the soup - so it's a win-win! WARNING: This soup makes enough for a small army.

Potato Cheese Soup
10 pound bag of potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 bag of carrots, peeled and sliced thinly
1 gallon water
12 chicken bouillon cubes
1 1/2 cup frozen corn
1 cup onion, chopped
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup GF flour
3 pints from a combination of half and half and/or whole milk and/or whipping cream
1/2 tsp pepper
12oz shredded cheese

In a 9 quart pot (or larger) add potatoes, carrots, water, and bouillon cubes. Boil for ten minutes. Stir in frozen corn. Sprinkle in salt and pepper. Continue boiling until carrots and potatoes are tender. At this point, the dairy free soup is finished. Scoop out however much you want and enjoy. TURN OFF THE HEAT.

In a large saucepan, add minced onion and butter and cook on medium heat until the onion is softened. Whisk in flour. Stir in milk/half and half/whipping cream. Whisk until smooth. Continue cooking on medium heat until thickened. Once it has thickened, turn off the heat and stir in the cheese until melted. DO NOT BOIL. Stir in the cheese sauce into the pot with the potatoes and carrots. Serve hot.

Serve with bread, if desired. Enjoy!

Friday, September 23, 2016

Homemade Hamburger Buns (Gluten Free and Dairy Free)

There are just some things I have had to do without since beginning this gluten free journey three years ago. The last time I had a hamburger on a bun was at the Cheesecake Factory and they had an Udi GF hamburger bun. It was big and dry and not great. After that? I just avoided hamburgers, period. I would think about making my delicious teriyaki burgers from time-to-time, but then I would buns. For hot dogs, I use corn tortillas as a replacement, but with hamburgers you really need that fluffy bun. Well, I have news for you. This recipe was fluffy, SOFT, and flavorful. And it really isn't hard to make, especially compared to regular rolls that I used to make. Enjoy!

Homemade Hamburger Buns
(Gluten Free, Dairy Free)
Recipe found here.

2 Tbsp Active Dry Yeast
1 & 1/4 cup warm water (110 degrees)
6 Tbsp canola oil
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups brown rice flour
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp potato starch
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp tapioca starch
1 & 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp onion powder
2 eggs
extra oil for the tops
(optional: sesame seeds for the tops)

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F. Put parchment paper on the cookie sheet.

Whisk together the yeast and warm water. Add in the oil and sugar. Cover with a towel and allow to double in size while you measure out your dry ingredients. 

In a mixer combine the brown rice flour, potato starch, tapioca starch, xanthan, salt and onion powder. When the yeast mixture is ready, add it and the eggs to the dry ingredients. Mix on low speed for 30 seconds then turn up the speed to medium and continue mixing for 2 & 1/2 more minutes.
Immediately scoop rolls in the size of 1/3 to 1/2 cup dough onto the prepared pan. Using wet fingers (and continually wetting them) touch up any bumps on the rolls to make them smooth. Using an oil brush or a oil mister, coat the rolls with a bit of oil. (If using, sprinkle on the sesame seeds.) 

Allow the rolls to sit 5 minutes than bake 8-12 minutes or until rolls are golden brown. Allow the rolls to cool completely before storing in a ziplock bag. I try to use these within 1-2 days, otherwise they tend to dry out. They also can be frozen for later use! Simply freeze them the day you make them for optimal freshness.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Chicken Noodle Soup Using Edamame Pasta

Last week we were sick with a virus. My good friends, the Grovers, brought us a big pot of this soup. It was so delicious that I asked for the recipe. Now I need to figure out where to buy some Edamame noodles.

Chicken Noodle Soup Using Edamame Pasta

2 12-oz. cans of chicken (or cooked chicken, cut up or shredded)
4 cloves of garlic or 2 tsp of minced garlic
1 medium onion, chopped
4 celery stalks, diced
3 carrots, diced
1 tsp dried Italian seasoning (or basil, parsley)
2 bay leaves
8 C water
1 tbsp chicken bouillon

Two handfuls of edamame pasta (break it as you put it in the boiling water)

Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add some olive oil and then garlic, onion, celery and carrots to the heated oil and sauté for about 3 minutes. Add the dried herbs, bay leaves, water and bouillon. Bring to a boil and let it simmer for about 15 minutes. (At this point, you can let the pan sit in the fridge overnight.) Next you put two handfuls of edamame pasta in boiling water for 4 minutes, drain it and add it to the soup along with the chicken. For variety you could add 1 C salsa and/or shredded Parmesan cheese.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Beef Shepherd's Pie

I made this recipe last October and it was so delicious, that it's been on my mind ever since. I am making it again tonight and that is my cue to post the recipe on my blog! I found the recipe here. I double this recipe and today I am trying it out in the crockpot - I will post how that goes.

Photo found here

Beef Shepherd's Pie
Serves 5-6
4 cups mashed potatoes
garlic salt
1lb ground beef
1/3 cup onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 Tablespoons GF flour
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1 can (14.5oz) chicken broth
2 cups frozen vegetable medley
salt & pepper
1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Brown ground beef, onions and garlic in a large
skillet on med-high heat. When meat is completely cooked, stir in flour and cook for
1-2 minutes.
2. Stir in tomato paste, worcestershire sauce, soy sauce and chicken broth. Simmer
for 5-6 minutes, or until sauce is thick. Turn the heat off and stir in frozen
vegetables and salt and pepper, to taste.
3. Pour beef mixture into a large, oven-proof casserole dish. Top with mashed
potatoes and smooth with a spatula. Sprinkle garlic salt on top of mashed potatoes.
4. Place casserole dish on a large sheet pan (in case the sauce overflows) and bake for
20-30 minutes, or until top is golden brown. Ladle and serve!