Archive for December, 2008

Gluten-Free Party Food

Gluten-Free Party Food

Sunshine has a good friend from school who has been in Thailand with her mother since June.  They came home over the Holidays for a quick visit and are hosting a New Year’s Eve Party tonight.  Bringing food is optional (and they are a very thoughtful family, well educated about Gluten-Intolerance and special diets), but I thought I would get busy in the kitchen and take something so that Sunshine and I would KNOW that we had some snacking options tonight.

First I went to www.chex.com and decided to make a chex mix recipe from their Gluten-Free page.  I chose Chex Brittle.  I have to say that I am a bit disappointed.  I mixed it up as directed and spread it out on two baking sheets.  In the oven, the panful on the bottom burnt, and the panful on the top didn’t get done – it was still gooey!  I scraped and saved what I could from the burnt pan and put the under-done pan back in the oven (but with the oven turned off – just  hot) for a good 20-30 more minutes.  It is okay now, but not something I intend to make again.

I also mixed up a jar of Russian Tea to take as a hostess gift.  I cut a circle of Christmas fabric to decorate the jar lid and attached a copy of the recipe. 

Just now, I finished making a layered Bean Dip.  I mixed 1 tsp. ground Cumin and 1 tsp. Chili Powder into 2 16 oz. cans of refried Beans and spread them on the bottom of a casserole dish.  Next I layered Salsa; 1 + cup shredded Cheddar; Sour Cream; Avocados mashed with Lemon Juice; a little more Cheddar and some chopped green onion.  I’ll take a bag of corn chips and call it good.

Have a Happy New Year!


Read Full Post »

Bowl of Steaming Hot Tortilla Soup

Bowl of Steaming Hot Tortilla Soup

I spent the day sewing again —  more aprons.  I think I mentioned that I like aprons?  So, dinner was left-over Tortilla Soup from last night.  Every time I make Tortilla Soup, it changes — depends on what I have in the fridge and pantry.  This is how I made it last night, and it was a huge hit.

Tortilla Soup

1/2 Onion

1 Serrano Pepper

Small bunch of Cilantro

1 large Clove of Garlic

1 Chicken Breast, cut into 3/4-inch pieces

1 32 oz. container Chicken Broth

1 15 oz. can Tomato Sauce

1 15 oz. can Whole Kernal Corn (with liquid)

1 15 oz. can Black Olives (with liquid)

1 15 oz. can White Beans (liquid drained off)

1 Cup cooked White Rice

1 tsp. Salt

1 tsp. Cumin

1.  In food processor, mince Onion, Serrano Pepper, Cilantro and Garlic.

2.  In a large stock pot, saute the Chicken pieces in a small amount of olive oil.  Add minced Onion mixture and fry until Chicken is mostly cooked and onion is translucent.

3.  Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.  Serve immediately, or let simmer for a while.

I serve the soup with freshly fried corn tortilla’s, cut into strips.   But, you could just use tortilla chips.  I also put shredded cheese and  sour cream on the table so people can top the soup as they wish.

Read Full Post »

Aprons & Lattes

Wow!  With both girls home from school and El Guapo taking time off of work, it has become nearly impossible to get near the computer!  I have a few minutes right now, with no one breathing down my neck, so I thought I would show you what I spent my day doing.

The apron I sewed today.

The apron I sewed today.


Yup, I sewed an apron.  Actually, I sewed two aprons – matching ones for El Guapo and myself.  We are doing a product demonstration at the local Co-op in a couple of weeks and wanted – not uniforms, precisely – but something official and (for me) something cute.  I do love a nice apron, so I decided to sew a couple and add our logo.  Don’t worry, El Guapo’s apron is bound in Black and White fabric, not pink, and he doesn’t have any rickrack.

I had meant to mention that at the Family Christmas Get-Together the other day, my Clever Brother-in-law made Egg Nog Lattes for anyone who would ask.  Am I ever glad I asked!  I like an occassional Egg Nog Latte, but these were extra special.  There has been a delicious homemade Egg Nog recipe in El Guapo’s family for years and years and . . .  Well, Sweet Sister-in-Law had made some for the get-together, and Clever Brother-in-law used it to make the lattes!

Here is the recipe for the Egg Nog

2 Eggs (can use equivalent amount of Egg Beaters)

1 Can (15 oz) Sweetened Condensed Milk

1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

1/4 tsp. Salt

1 Quart Milk

1 Cup Heavy Cream


1.  In a small bowl, beat the eggs (or egg beaters) until smooth and lemony.

2.  In a separate bowl, beat heavy Cream until soft peaks form.

3.  Gently mix beaten Eggs into whipped Cream.

4.  In a punch bowl, combine Sweetened Condensed Milk, Milk, Vanilla and Salt.

5.  Fold Egg/Cream mixture into Milk mixture.

6.  Ladle Egg Nog into cups and garnish each cup with a sprinkling of Nutmeg.

Clever Brother-in-law just used the Egg Nog in place of Milk for the lattes and sprinkled the Nutmeg on top.

An interesting thing happened in relation to the lattes.  One of El Guapo’s cousins could only stay for about half an hour and as she was getting ready to go, Clever Brother-in-law made her a latte . . . but he put it in a paper cup with a lid.  I couldn’t believe it!  A Latte to go, just like Starbucks!

Read Full Post »

Family Christmas Get Together

We just returned from the annual family Christmas get together — had a great time, as usual.  My sweet sister-in-law even did some research and found a flourless chocolate cake on the gluten-free goddess’ blog and made it so that Sunshine and I could enjoy dessert!  So thoughtful.   I was going to include the link to the recipe here, but looking at Karina’s Kitchen blog (aka the gluten-free goddess), I discovered that she has at least two flourless chocolate cake recipes, and I don’t know which one Sweet Sister-in-Law used.  So, if she reads this and wants to make a comment, she can let us all know!

I made some gluten-free gingerbread to take with us, but didn’t have the time to make the tart lemon sauce, so just whipped some cream to top the slices.  I used the recipe from Sans Gluten, S’il Vous Plait! Gluten-Free Holidays cookbook. > Gluten-Free Holidays I just love Gingerbread!

Oh, and for anyone who is interested – the Bittersweet Chocolate Pots de Creme I made for our Christmas dessert was fantastic!  Smooth, rich and creamy.  Sunshine was the only one to eat her entire ramekin-ful that night, the rest of us saved half and finished it last night.

Sorry no photos today – the camera was employed taking family photos all day.

Read Full Post »

Cinnamon Rolls, ready to bake

Cinnamon Rolls, ready to bake


Yesterday afternoon I mixed up some Gluten-free cinnamon rolls so we could have a nice Christmas breakfast.  I used the recipe I found at iamglutenfree.blogspot. I did make a couple of alterations. 1. I used Sans Gluten, S’il Vous Plait! All Purpose Gluten-Free Flour Blend instead of Potato Starch and Corn Starch. 2. I proofed the yeast in warm milk. 3. I used 1/3 Cup toasted Pecans. 4. After I had spread the filling and rolled up the dough, I cut one slice at a time and moved it to the pan using an off-set spatula heavily sprayed with cooking spray. The first time I made these, I cut them all at once and then tried to move them – the dough is soooooo soft, that cutting them all at once smooshed them almost beyond repair, but cutting and moving them one at a time helped keep their shape. 5. After they were in the baking pan, I covered them and refrigerated them so I could pop them in the oven this morning. I think that going straight from the fridge to the oven meant that they could have used an extra 5 minutes baking time as the very center was still a little gooey. But they were great!

Baked Gluten-Free Cinnamon Rolls

Baked Gluten-Free Cinnamon Rolls

Here is a Christmas photo to enjoy. It is a gourd from my garden that I painted.

Madonna & Child Gourd

Madonna & Child Gourd

Read Full Post »

Bittersweet Pots de Creme

Bittersweet Pots de Creme

Happy Christmas Eve!

I received my January/February 2009 Victoria Magazine a week ago and when I saw the Pots de Creme featured in that issue, I knew I had found our special Christmas Dessert! Don’t you just love it when a delicious looking dessert is naturally gluten-free?

I don’t happen to have any official Pots de Creme cups to bake the dessert in, so I looked on Ebay and found an antique set for $900.00 — Yeah, right! Instead, I baked them in some nice little ramekins I already own.

This was a very easy dessert to make and looks fantastic. I am including the recipe here, along with some tips I found helpful.

Bittersweet Chocolate Pots de Creme

1 cup Heavy Cream
3/4 cup Whole Milk (I only had 2%, so I used that)
1/3 cup Sugar
4 ounces Bittersweet Baking Chocolate (I used Ghirardelli)
1 Tbsp. unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 tsp. Vanilla extract *
1 tsp. Chocolate extract *
1/8 tsp. Salt
6 Egg Yolks

*I don’t have Chocolate extract, but I do have some homemade Vanilla extract that El Guapo and I started in June. We knew it would be ready to use right around Christmas time and I decided since it was extra special, I would use 1 1/2 tsp. Vanilla and skip the Chocolate Extract.

1. Preheat oven 275 degrees
2. In a medium saucepan, combine the cream, milk, sugar, chocolate, cocoa powder, vanilla extract and salt. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture just begins to boil; remove from heat.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks until smooth. Pour approximately 1 cup of the hot chocolate mixture into the beaten yolks, whisking constantly; repeat. (I had El Guapo help me here, I poured a slow steady stream of hot chocolate, and he whisked like mad). Return the yolk-chocolate mixture to the saucepan and whisk to combine; strain mixture through a fine-mesh sieve.
4. Evenly divide the mixture among 4 ramekins. Line the bottom of a large baking pan with a folded kitchen towel, and arrange the cups on the towel. Fill the pan with enough boiling-hot water to reach halfway up the sides of the cups, and cover the pan with aluminum foil. Bake for 45 minutes, or until set around the edges but still wobbly in the centers.
5. Remove pan from the oven, and carefully remove foil. Let Pots de Creme cool in the pan for 30 minutes. Remove the cups from the pan, wrap tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 4 hours before serving.

Now I’m off to bake gluten-free Cinnamon Rolls for breakfast tomorrow morning.

Silver Christmas Ornament

Silver Christmas Ornament

Read Full Post »

Gluten-Free Sour Dough Pancake Stack

Gluten-Free Sour Dough Pancake Stack

For dinner last night, my husband, El Guapo, and I made Gluten-Free sour dough pancakes using the Sans Gluten, S’il Vous Plait! Gluten-Free Pancake Book. El Guapo flipped the cakes on the griddle, and I buttered and spread brown sugar on them as they came off. We kept the stack warm in the oven while more pancakes were cooking and then cut the stack into wedges to serve. There was just enough left-over for Sunshine to have sourdough pancakes for breakfast this morning.

Put your cursor over the green text below to follow the link to the cookbook.

yummy pancakes

It’s snowing again! Here’s another snow picture, because I can’t resist.

Crabapple Tree in the Snow

Crabapple Tree in the Snow

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »