Category Archives: Gluten Free

Cauliflower “fried rice”

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Some people find it hard to believe that I don’t like rice. I just think it’s boring and a total waste of my time calories. If I’m gonna eat empty calories, it’s gonna be cake and not rice, ya hear? So when I started seeing recipes for cauliflower “fried rice” I was all over it. Genius: fried rice with nutrients!

Cauliflower “fried rice”, makes about 3 servings

-2 T sesame oil
-1 small onion
-1 cup sliced mushrooms
-1 large head cauliflower
-1 knob fresh ginger (we’ll grate this to be about 1 T ginger)
-2 cups mixed frozen vegetables
-1 cup frozen kale
-1/2 cup sliced water chestnuts (optional, for crunch)
-1/4 cup raw cashews
-salt & pepper
-2 eggs
-2-3 T soy sauce (or aminos to make it gluten-free)

Let’s do this:

Dice your onion.

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Get the oil heating in a large skillet over medium heat and add the onion.
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In the meantime, chop the cauliflower florets into roughly bite size pieces.
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Add the cauliflower in batches to the food processor.
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Process for about 10 seconds – until “riced”. You don’t want to process for too long or it will get mushy.
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Empty the riced cauliflower to a large bowl and move to the next batch.
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Once the onions are soft, add the mushrooms.
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Peel your ginger and grate it. I use a microplane.
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Once the mushrooms are soft, add the ginger and stir to combine. Add the cauliflower and stir. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook for about 5 minutes. You want the cauliflower to soften but not get mushy.
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Remove cover and add the frozen vegetables, kale, water chestnuts, and cashews. Stir to warm up the veggies.
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Crack the two eggs in a small bowl and whisk. We need to cook the egg. You have a choice: you can scramble the egg in a separate pan, or you can make a hole in the middle of the veggies and add the eggs like I did. Either way, let the egg cook through and then stir in with the rest of the cauliflower. Add the soy sauce and stir to combine.
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Serve!
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No-bake coconut delights

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The last few years I have attended a cookie exchange with my girlfriends, most of whom I’ve met through running. I know a cookie exchange sounds like something your grandmother might do, but for us it’s an excuse to see each other outside of the 7am hour and in our normal clothes. And to shove our faces with cookies. Oh, and also to try out new cookie recipes. Correction: most girls try out new cookie recipes, but I’m not allowed to because a few members of the group are a little addicted to this recipe (fine with me: these are no-bake and require 4 ingredients!). Last weekend there was talk of a fight breaking out over the leftovers. I wouldn’t want to be the subject of the wrath of any “coconut crack” addicts; if it came down to it and I had to run, b*tches be fast. So I always make extras.

Coconut delights, aka “Coconut crack”, makes about 3 1/2 dozen (depending on how big you make them)

-1/2 cup butter, softened
-2 cups powdered sugar
-1 package (5 1/3 cups) sweetened shredded coconut
-1 cup chocolate chips (I use milk, but semi-sweet will work too)
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Let’s do this:

Combine the powdered sugar and coconut in a large bowl.
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Add your softened butter and combine with a fork (if you double the recipe, you might break out the hand mixer to save your biceps).
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Form the coconut/sugar/butter mixture into small balls (about a tablespoon, but it doesn’t really matter since these are no-bake!) and place on parchment paper. Make an indent at the top to hold your chocolate:

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Now time to melt the chocolate. You can melt the chips in the microwave, but I make a DIY double boiler like this:

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Add your chips once the water heats up.

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Stir constantly until the chips are melted.

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Use a teaspoon to add a dollop of chocolate to the top of each cookie.

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Let the chocolate harden for about an hour.

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Serve with a side of coffee: _MG_0111.jpg

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Spicy salmon and sweet potato cakes

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When I’m planning a party, a predictable sequence of events ensues. It goes something like this:

3 weeks until party: “This will be easy; I’ll just do A and call it a day.”
2 weeks until party: “You know what would be cute… A, B, and C. Definitely doing A, B, and C.”
1 week until party: “Ooooh, D and E would be so perfect. There’s really no point in doing A, B and C if I don’t do D and E too… That’s it; I’m doing D and E.”
4 days until party: “Just saw F and G on pinterest. HAVE to do F and G. So cute; I die!”
1 day until party: Huz sees the insanity of A through G unfolding:  “I thought you were just doing A?!” Me: “I know, but I just saw H, and it. is. beyond. I have to do it.”

Well, I’m at it again! This time I’m hosting a brunch, and I’m in the throws of menu planning. Let’s just call this recipe “A”, otherwise known as the beginning of the snowball.

Spicy salmon and sweet potato cakes, makes 12 small cakes

-2 medium sweet potatoes or yams (makes about 1 1/2 cups mashed sweet potato)
-5 scallions
-2 T cilantro
-2 T butter (I used earth balance)
-2 6 oz cans salmon
-1 jalapeno pepper
-3/4 c frozen corn kernels
-2 eggs
-1 lemon
-2 t cumin
-salt & pepper
-cooking spray

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Let’s do this:
First thing’s first. Ya gotta cook the sweet potatoes. You can microwave them, but I made extra baked potatoes the night before so mine were baked (I usually bake mine for about 35-40 minutes at 375).

If you microwaved your potatoes, then preheat the oven to 350. At this point, I put my butter in a ramekin and stuck it in the oven to soften it. You can also microwave for about 20-30 seconds to soften. Either way, be careful not to burn it!

Chop your onions and cilantro. (remove the butter if you haven’t already – place in on top of the stove to keep it warm!)
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Zest your lemon and dice the jalapeno, removing the seeds.
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Drain the salmon and add to a large bowl.  Add in the scallions, cilantro, and corn.
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Peel the skin off your sweet potato and then mash with a fork.
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Add to the salmon mixture, along with the lemon zest, jalapeno, eggs, and butter. Stir gently to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
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Spray your muffin tin with cooking spray if necessary. Divide the mixture evenly into the 12 muffin cups.
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Bake for 25-30 minutes.
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I served mine with a small salad; but at the party they will be served with a frittata, yogurt parfaits, fruit salad, cranberry cocktails, coffee, and lots of cookies. Of course.

Happy Holidays!

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Wilted kale, avocado, tomato, and cashew late summer salad

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Yesterday I picked up a copy of The Onion and almost shot coffee out of my nose when I saw this article:

Ruby eats every meal like she’s a close second in a pie-eating contest. A re-occurring joke in our house involves Ruby sitting in a circle at a Weight Watchers meeting, admitting “I was eating food so fast, I couldn’t even taste it!”

The look she’s giving me right now says she’d like to tell all of you how she’s seen me eat food.

On another note, the Air and Water show scared the sh*t out of Ruby on Friday. Like, literally. Not fun.

Enough crazy dog lady stuff.  Speaking of stuffing faces, I can’t stop making the Vegan Creamy Cilantro dressing I posted a few weeks ago. This is the latest salad pairing for my new fave dressing.

Wilted kale, avocado, tomato, and cashew late summer salad, serves 2
-about 6 cups mixed baby kales (baby kales are key – this just won’t be the same with regular kale – too tough)
-1 cup cherry tomatoes
-1/2 avocado
-1/4 cup raw cashews
-2 T hemp seeds (any seeds will work – sunflower would also be good)
-Dressing of choice (I made Vegan Creamy Cilantro)

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Start with your baby kales. I got mine from Costco, but I’ve seen them in a lot of stores.

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Get a big bowl, grab a handful and twist them to wilt. Like this:

Then grab another handful, and keep going until kale is soft. Top each salad with 1/4 avocado, 1/2 cup tomatoes, 1/8 cup cashews, and a tablespoon of hemp seeds.

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Add dressing and enjoy:

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Chipotle Roasted Blue Potato Salad

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Ok folks, confession time: This is my third copycat recipe from the Whole Foods salad bar (see also Detox Salad and Orange Cranberry Cous Cous). WF keeps their recipes reeeeal close to their heart. I got the hairy eyeball from the produce guy when he saw me taking a picture of the ingredient card for the Chipotle Potato Salad (see below). But don’t worry, I’m still gonna post my copycat recipe here because I’m just a gangsta, I suppose.
Since we’re on the topic: Anyone else have a crush on Avon Barksdale? No? …Then I guess it’s just me and a bunch of dead chicks who can’t keep secrets.

This recipe is kind of like a choose-your-own-adventure. Remember those? I always felt the need to read through every possible option in those books. That might explain why I  have made this recipe a few times, varying the method each time.

Options:
1. Potatoes: I used these little red and blue cuties from my CSA, but any small potatoes will work.
2. Boil vs. Roast: Huz and I decided that roasting wins (I tried both), but if it’s just too hot outside for you to turn on your oven (I feel you), then boiling works just fine.
3. Heat: If you use the whole can of chipotle peppers + seeds, then you are a brave little grasshopper. I modified a bit – I used all the adobo sauce from the can but only about 2/3 of the peppers.

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Chipotle Roasted Blue Potato Salad, makes about 6 servings
-about 2 pounds potatoes
-2 T olive oil
-1/4 cup chopped red onion
-1/4 cup chopped green onion (about 3)
-1 clove garlic
-1/4 c chopped cilantro
-1 can (7.5 oz) chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
-1 T fresh lime juice
-1/3 cup canola oil mayonnaise
-salt & pepper to taste
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Let’s do this: 
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut your potatoes up into cubes, toss in olive oil and spread on a baking sheet (line baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat for easiest removal). Bake for about 25 minutes, stirring once to ensure even baking.
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While potatoes are cooking, dice your onions and garlic and chop cilantro.
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Now for the (choose your own) adventure: Slice open the chipotle peppers (retain the sauce in the can) and scrape out the seeds.
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Dice the peppers to make a chipotle pepper massacre:
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Note I only used about 2/3 of the peppers, but if you think you can handle it, use ’em all, because you are tough like that.

When the potatoes are out of the oven and have cooled a bit, add them to a large bowl and add the other ingredients: onions, garlic, cilantro, peppers, leftover adobo sauce, lime juice, and mayo. Salt and pepper to taste.

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Asparagus and Garlic Scape Pizza with Vegan Cauliflower Crust

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There’s a whole bunch of spring vegetables comin’ at you today, readers! First, some business:

1. It’s garlic scape season!!! Get yo self to the farmer’s market and see if you can get your hands on some. Make some pesto, or this pizza!
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2. Cupcakes and Cashmere’s wedding. In a word: perfection. Discuss.

Ok back to the recipe. Michelle first tipped me off to cauliflower pizza crust. I didn’t have eggs in the house both times I’ve made this, so I modified this vegan cauliflower crust recipe.

Note: This does not taste like traditional pizza crust. It’s almost potato-like, and I love it. Also, you can’t really pick it up and eat it with your hands (although, rest assured, the Huz tried). I eat mine with a fork like the civilized midwesterner that I am.

Asparagus and Garlic Scape Pizza with Vegan Cauliflower Crust, serves 2-3
-1 head cauliflower
-3/4 cup flour (I used brown rice flour, but any will work) + a little extra for dusting your baking sheet
-3 flax eggs (or regular eggs)
-1 t salt
-1/2 t each basil, oregano, and rosemary
-3 T olive oil
-1 bunch asparagus (try for the thin asparagus if you can find it)
-1 bunch garlic scapes
-1 1/2 cup cheese (I used Daiya mozzarella, but I think a combination of mozzarella and parmesan would be great!)
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Let’s prep: assemble flax eggs (1 T ground flax plus 1 T water), roughly chop the cauliflower.

Add the cauliflower to a food processor and process about 20 seconds until it looks like this:
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Add the cauliflower to a large bowl and combine with the flax eggs, flour, salt, and spices. You might have to knead with your hands.
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Add a little flour to your baking sheet and spread out the dough with a spatula.

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Bake the crust at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.

While the crust is baking, cut your scapes into about 2 inch pieces. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a pan and saute the garlic scapes until they start to soften. Break the ends off your asparagus and cut into 2 inch pieces. Add them to the garlic scapes and saute for about 5 minutes.
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Remove crust from oven and spread with about a tablespoon of olive oil.
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Sprinkle cheese on top of pizza and add the garlic scapes and asparagus.
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Bake about 10 minutes or until crust is browned a bit.
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Portabella mushroom pizzas

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It has been an exciting week over here at DR: DR-Sis got engaged! Rest assured: I am going to DIY the sh*t out of this wedding!!! What’s that, DR-Sis? You don’t need my help? Well, maybe you should have gone through with that whole divorcing-the-family plot you had when you were 17. Because this. is. happening. Yaaaay!

Pinterest is going to show up at this wedding and then duck out in shame when it sees the wedding-cake-with-cupcakes-inside-served-in-mason-jars-with-cream-cheese-and-crushed-oreos*-hand-tied-with-twine-and-small-handles-for-carrying-home <hits three-pointer at buzzer>. Betcha never thought of that, Pinterest!!!

Yes, that sound you hear is DR-Sis eloping.

Anywhoo, this recipe is for DR-Sis, since she can’t eat gluten. Reality check: DR-Sis never cooks and the rest of you will just order real pizza. I guess this recipe is for me.

*why does every recipe on pinterest involve cream cheese and/or oreos? just me?

Portabella mushroom pizzas, serves 2, adapted from BodyrockTV
-1/2 white onion
-2 T olive oil
-4 cloves garlic
-1 leek
-4 tomatoes
-about 1/4 cup fresh basil
-juice from 1/2 lemon
-3 or 4 of the biggest portabella mushrooms you can find
-about 1 cup mozzarella cheese (I tried the Diaya brand this time and it was pretty good!)
-salt & pepper to taste

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First, the pre-work: Chop up your white onion, tomatoes, and basil. Mince the garlic. Slice the leek into thin coins (I only use the white and light green portions).

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Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Heat up the olive oil in a large skillet and add the onion.
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Cook the onion until soft (looks like this):
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Add the garlic, leek, and tomatoes.
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Saute for about 5 minutes, or until leek and tomatoes are soft.
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Add the lemon juice, basil, and salt & pepper to the skillet. Give it a stir and remove from  heat.
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Twist the stems off of your mushrooms and fill each mushroom with the onion/leek/tomato mixture.
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Top each ‘shroom with about 1/4 cup of cheese.
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Bake for about 12 minutes, then change oven temp to broil and cook for 1-2 additional minutes (keep an eye on them so they don’t burn – this is just to get the cheese browned a little). Note: I baked my pizzas on a cookie rack on top of my cookie sheet. This keeps them from sticking and also drains out some of the excess moisture from the mushrooms. If you don’t have a rack, don’t sweat it – just use some parchment paper or spray the cookie sheet with a little oil to keep from sticking.

Remove from oven and top with a little extra basil and salt & pepper. Pizza time!
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Whole Foods Detox Salad Copycat

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The “Detox Salad” at the Whole Foods salad bar is one of my favorites. I am really not a fan of raw broccoli, but somehow it’s ok when it is completely pulverized, as it is in this salad. I had been meaning to recreate this salad for a while, and then I remembered that Oh She Glows had done a remake of it. Of course I can’t leave well enough alone, so I added some kale and a little olive oil. I’ve been having it for lunch ever since. This recipe makes A LOT of detox salad. Enough for me to take it for lunch 5 days a week and the Huz to have a few tablespoons of the leftovers.

WF Detox Salad Copycat recipe, adapted from Oh She Glows Detox Salad, makes about 12 cups
-1 bunch carrots (about 3/4 pound of carrots, after the greens were removed)
-2 bunches broccoli
-1 head cauliflower
-3-4 leaves kale
-about 1/2 cup fresh parsley (more if you like parsley)
-1/2 cup sunflower seeds
-1/2 cup raisins
-1 cup currants (a.k.a. tiny expensive raisins. just use raisins if you can’t find these)
-1 T olive oil (the WF version is oil-free, but I have always read that the vitamins in raw veggies are absorbed better when eaten with a little oil, so I added it. Also, is this true?)
-juice from 1/2 lemon
-1 t kelp granules (optional)
-salt & pepper

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This recipe comes together pretty quickly if you have a food processor. If not, roll up your sleeves and grab your elbow grease and let’s get started.

Start with the carrots. If you have this attachment for your food processor, your life just got way easier – it shreds for you!
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Shred the carrots. Before:
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After:
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Add to the biggest bowl you can find.
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Now roughly chop your broccoli and add to the food processor. Process for about 5 seconds (one one-thousand, two one-thousand…). I processed the broccoli in three batches.
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Also, this is what it would look like on your windows if it could rain broccoli and carrots:
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Add the broccoli to the carrot bowl.
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Now on to the cauliflower.
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Roughly chop and add to the food processor. Process in about 2-3 batches for about 5 seconds each. Each batch should look like this:
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Add to the carrot/broccoli bowl.
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Now for the kale. Cut the leaves off the stems and add the leaves to the food processor and process for about 10 seconds.
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Before:
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After:
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Add to the bowl. I used about half a cup of parsley. Before:
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And after:
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Add the kale and parsley to the carrot/broccoli/cauliflower mixture.
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Now add the raisins, currants, sunflower seeds, olive oil, lemon, kelp granules, and season with salt and pepper. Mix well.
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All packed up for lunch!
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Shrimp Tex-Mex Salad with Vegan Creamy Cilantro Dressing

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I’m at it again with the Mexican/Spanish/Latin food. Must be Cinco de Mayo – I just can’t help myself! I think I’m trying to convince myself that it is warm enough here in Chicago to eat this outdoors.

I had this dressing on one of my Pinterest boards for ever, and now that I’ve finally made it, I don’t know what I ever did before! I have seriously been putting it on everything. If you don’t usually make your own salad dressing, give this one a try – sooo much better than bottled, and it only takes a few minutes!

This salad is pretty versatile, so try your own variation. If you don’t like tomatoes, you can be friends with Ruby. Girl ate a receipt yesterday on our walk, but wouldn’t touch a tomato that fell on the ground while I was making this.

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That’s her “It wasn’t organic, ma!” face.

Shrimp Tex-Mex Salad, serves 2, inspired by this recipe
-1 T. olive oil
-1/2 lb. shrimp (I bought cooked shrimp because the little guys were on sale, and it makes preparation a little faster, but raw shrimp will work too!)
-1 T taco seasoning
-1 head romaine
-1/2 avocado
-1 ear corn
-2 cups cherry tomatoes
-2 green onions
-1/4 cup sunflower seeds

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Creamy Cilantro-Lime-Avocado Dressing (inspired by this post, makes about a 1 1/2 cups):
-1/4 c. rice wine vinegar
-1/4 c. lime juice (juice of 2 limes)
-2 cloves garlic
-1/2 c. canola oil
-1/2 cup fresh cilantro
-1/2 avocado
-1/2 t. sea salt

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1. Heat the olive oil in a skillet and add the shrimp. Sprinkle some taco seasoning on the shrimp and stir for about a minute, until coated in seasoning. Remove from heat.
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2. Chop your romaine, tomatoes, avocado, and remove corn kernels from cob.
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3. Make dressing: add all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend for about 30 seconds to a minute.

4. Add all salad ingredients to a bowl and serve with dressing!
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Black rice salad with avocado and grapefruit

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Here’s the some advice, friends, and don’t say I never gave you anything. Don’t drop black rice. Don’t drop it anywhere, but definitely don’t drop it all over your kitchen. Because you know what it looks like scattered all over the kitchen floor? Yeah, mouse poop. And cleaning it up is like a real-life, super-frustrating game of Operation. And I guarantee you’ll never find every last kernel, but some random guest will, and do you think they’ll believe you when you tell them its black rice? Of course not, because who in the hell buys black rice? People who are so bored with white rice that they are willing to pay twice the price?!

Well, I bought black rice because I wanted to make a salad I saw on Pinterest. What I got was a lifetime of picking black rice out from in between floorboards.

Black Rice Salad with Avocado and Grapefruit, adapted from The Kitchn, serves about 4

-1 c black rice
-1 avocado
-1 grapefruit
-3 green onions
-1 T olive oil
-1/4 cup orange champagne vinaigrette (if you don’t have a trader joe’s near you, you can follow the original recipe and use orange juice + rice wine vinegar)
-salt & pepper

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Rinse the black rice in a mesh colander under cold water until the water runs clear. Bring 2 cups water plus a dash of salt to a boil, then add the rice. Bring to a boil and reduce heat. Cook for about 30 minutes, or until rice is cooked and the water is absorbed.

While the rice is cooking, chop your green onion, segment your grapefruit, and dice the avocado.

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When the rice is done cooking, transfer back to the mesh colander and run the rice under cool water to bring the temperature down. Add the rice to a large bowl, and mix in the olive oil and vinaigrette.
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Add in the onion, grapefruit and avocado. Stir and add salt & pepper to taste.

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Don’t serve in your kitchen – all of your guests think you have mice.

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