Homemade hummus, if you please!

Monica says:

Hello friends! I’ve missed you!

You know how life gets in the way when you are planning things? Well, yes, that’s what happened to me over these past few months.

It’s been forever since my last post and I truly apologize. I hadn’t been feeling well and it turns out that I have thyroid issues. And it all makes sense to me now!

Health aside, my blogging partner, Daria, has started a new career teaching pastry arts full time and we are overjoyed for her! In addition, she launched her gluten-free baking business Batter. A Gluten Free Baking Co, LLC, and she’s been super busy selling her delightful gluten free goodies every Saturday in Hershey at the Farmers’ Market on Chocolate. Her dad and I are in awe of her talent and stamina!

Check out Daria’s business Facebook page @ https://www.facebook.com/Batter-A-Gluten-Free-Baking-Co-1739749562921022/?fref=ts

So today, I am going to keep it simple, okay?

My diet has gone almost 100% organic and luckily for me, Daria, has an organic veggie garden. Every time I see her she fills my arms and cooler with lots of wonderful veggies that help me cope with my aches and pains….she’s a great kid!

Since my refrigerator has housed 2 eggplants for a few days, I decided to make an eggplant hummus. I looked for a recipe that could guide me and I found one at epicurious.com.

They never fail me!

I looked it over and checked my pantry ingredients and I had everything except the chickpeas!

No problem….I had cannellini beans….it can be Italian eggplant hummus, right?

So I modified the recipe to fit my needs, as most people do, too!

It’s fun to make things your own!

 

Here is my version:

Ingredients:

2 medium sized organic eggplants

3 T olive oil (plus a little more)

1 can of cannellini beans, drained

2 T organic tahini paste (heaping)

1 ½ tsp of minced garlic

Bunch of fresh parsley

Dash of salt and pepper

 

 

How to:

Preheat oven to 350°F.

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Cut eggplants in half lengthwise. Make a crisscross pattern with a sharp knife, here and there, on the flesh.

Rub each cut side with a total of 1 1/2 tablespoons oil; sprinkle with salt.

Place eggplant on rimmed baking sheet, cut side down; bake until tender, about 1 hour.

 

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Cool and then scoop flesh (seeds and all) into food processor and discard eggplant skins.

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Add cannellini beans, remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil, lemon juice, tahini, fresh parsley and garlic; puree until mixture is almost smooth.

Transfer to bowl; swirl some additional olive oil on top before serving and add extra parsley if desired.

Taste and season the hummus with additional salt and pepper if desired.

You can serve the hummus in individual bowls with Lundberg Gluten Free Rice Chips, as pictured here!

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So simple, so nutritious, and so delicious! (this is my new mantra!)

Enjoy!

© 2016, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

 

 

 

 

Blueberry Coconut Crisp…gluten-free and oh, so good!

Monica says:

Every 4th of July brings new blueberry recipes to my collection. This one is a keeper for sure!

So easy and delicious!

I’ve even had some “coconut haters” try it and come over to the “coconut lovers” (okay, “likers”) side!

See what you think!

I adapted this recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod (thank you!).

Ingredients:

5 cups fresh blueberries
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice and a dash of cinnamon*
1 cup GF Quaker Old Fashioned Oats
1/4 cup almond meal or whole wheat flour (I used hazelnut flour)
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut (I used unsweetened, unsulphured flaked coconut)
1/4 cup brown sugar (I used organic coconut palm sugar)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (I used Calicutts Spice Co. Saigon Cinnamon*)
1/3 cup melted coconut oil (I used organic extra virgin coconut oil)
Ice cream or yogurt for serving, optional

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9 x 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.

Pour blueberries into dish and pour lemon juice over the berries. Add a dash of cinnamon. Gently toss.

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A huge THANK YOU to my niece, Alicia, for letting us pick these beauties from her blueberry trees!

Honestly….TREES! Never have seen anything like them!

In a medium bowl, combine oats, flour or almond meal, coconut, brown sugar, salt, and cinnamon.

Pour coconut oil over the dry ingredients and stir until combined.

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Sprinkle the oat mixture evenly over the blueberries in the pan.

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Bake the crisp for 35 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown and the fruit is bubbling.

Serve warm with ice cream or yogurt, if desired.

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Best thing about this dessert is that you can make it ahead of time and as long as it’s covered,

it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days!

So, in a word….YUM!

Give it a try…you won’t be sorry!

© 2016, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

Meatless Monday….any day of the week!

Monica says:

I woke up and I was craving risotto!

No kidding….couldn’t  stop thinking about it! Talk about strong Italian roots!

So I decided to scan the web and look for a recipe that included spinach. It was a must-have ingredient for me!

Lo and behold after a short while scanning recipes, I found it!

Woman’s Day never lets me down! LOVE their site and especially the recipes!

Here is what presented itself to me and I ran to the grocery store to fulfill the ingredient list. Such simple ingredients and so wholesome!

You gotta try this simple recipe!

Risotto with Scallions, Mushrooms, and Spinach

Upon reading the recipe, I did things in a little different sequence and chose to add ½ cup of veggie stock at a time, rather than all at once….the risotto came super creamy! If you have the extra time, in my humble opinion, it’s worth the effort!

Let the cooking begin!

Sauté the mushrooms in olive oil until they are happy!

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Now sauté the onions and garlic…smells amazing!

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Add the Arborio rice and then the white wine…oh yum!

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Start adding the veggie stock a little at a time and stir often….the consistency will be smooth as silk!

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Don’t these mushrooms look ready to jump in the risotto?

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Incorporate the mushrooms into the risotto…it’s almost done!

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Now let’s wilt the fresh organic baby spinach and pack in the vitamins!

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Looks amazing, huh?

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Plate and add a little Romano cheese…oh dear!

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Oh…forgot to add the scallions that I cut!

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They really add to the flavor profile…bon appetit!

© 2016, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

 

Pizza from a gluten-free mix!

Monica says:

Sorry that it’s been so long since I’ve posted, but this winter has not been kind to me!

Let’s just say I am so happy to say “Spring has sprung” and I look forward to reconnecting with all of you!

So here’s my story:

I rarely make anything from a gluten-free mix.

But I have to ask myself why I don’t!

If the ingredients in a mix are well balanced and don’t include much salt and/or sugar, I will consider trying it! Hey, I’ll try anything at least once and if it works, it’s a keeper!

Such is the case with Stonewall Kitchen Pizza Crust.

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I had not tried anything by this company yet and wanting something easy for the Lenten season,

I grabbed a box and decided to give it a whirl!

The directions were clear enough so I went to work.

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Of course, you needed to pat in onto the cookie sheet and at first I wasn’t sure if I would have enough dough to go around,

but to my surprise, it filled the pan!

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One problem: the dough didn’t rise as expected when I put it in a “warm” place. So I put it in the oven on warm for a short time and voila!

Now onto my toppings! Yay!

I generally just use a can of crushed organic tomatoes with lots of seasonings.

Since Daria started partnering with Calicutts Spice Co., I have become infatuated with Robert’s “Mediterranean” spice blend.

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It’s fantastic! A must-try!

Anyway, a little sprinkle of Romano cheese, lots of “Mediterrean” spice, some fresh onions, and black olives and it’s ready for the oven!

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I wish you could smell what my kitchen smells like now….oh dear!

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What a perfect Lenten meal when we are going meatless!

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Just glad I bought this mix….you should, too!

© 2016, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

Cream of broccoli soup and Mac ‘n cheese….does it get any better?

Monica and Daria say:

Can you say yum?

Can you say it twice?

Well, that’s what you will be saying when you make these two great dishes!

The first and last soup of our celebration this month is a wonderful recipe shared with us by a great friend, Mike.  We remember tasting it for the first time several years ago and we were hooked!

It’s relatively easy but you’ll need some patience and a good blender.

Since it’s a creamed soup, you will need to purée it when all of the ingredients are done cooking. It’s so worth the extra effort….you’ll see!

First begin gathering your ingredients and then follow this recipe!

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Saute on medium heat:

1 head of celery, chopped

2 large onions, chopped (we used sweet Vidalia onions)

3 or 4 cloves of garlic, chopped

¼ cup olive oil (we used organic coconut oil)

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Add:

½ cup Uncle Ben’s White Rice (We used Jasmine rice and have also used brown rice but it takes a wee bit longer)

½ gal chicken stock (64 oz. OR 8 cups; we use unsalted stock)

Salt and pepper

Heat on medium until soft boil (about 10 minutes)

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Add:

2-3 chopped crowns of broccoli

Heat broccoli until it can be fork-pierced

 

Purée the soup in a blender. We split the batch in two and then added it back into pot!

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This soup can be served with a dollop of sour cream or grated cheddar cheese or plain.

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We love to garnish it with fresh parsley!

© 2005, Mike Hurley

 

And now…for our homemade gluten-free Mac ‘n Cheese to eat alongside the soup!

Gluten-free Mac ‘n Cheese

This recipe fills an 8“ x 8” glass baking dish with oooey, gooey goodness!

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Cook 8 oz of your favorite gf pasta according to package instructions (we love Tinkyada rice pasta and used  half of a bag of elbow macaroni).

Meanwhile, gather your other ingredients!

1 T butter

1 clove minced garlic

1 T arrowroot flour (or gf blend)

¾ cup skim milk

4 oz shredded cheddar cheese

4 oz shredded Fontina cheese

Pepper and red pepper

Gluten-free bread crumbs

Romano cheese

Directions:

On medium heat, melt the butter and add in the garlic. Sauté for 30 seconds, add in arrowroot flour and whisk to create a roux.

Now whisk in the milk. Reduce heat to low and add in the cheeses and melt (should melt really quickly!).

Combine the cheese mixture with the pasta. Add a dash of pepper. You may also add some red pepper, if you like.

Place into a small baking dish sprayed with Pam or any cooking spray.

Top with some gluten-free bread crumbs and sprinkle top with Romano cheese.

Bake at 400˚ for 20 minutes.

If you want the top of your mac ‘n cheese golden, you can place it under the broiler for a few minutes before serving….just watch it doesn’t burn!!

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© 2016, Monica & Daria of glutenfreedoubletalk  whisks

 

This is such a satisfying lunch or dinner!

The combo of these two comfort foods is the best!

Hope you try these and if you do, let us know how you like them!

Enjoy!

© 2016, Monica & Daria of glutenfreedoubletalk 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not your average soup and salad!

Monica says:

Today was the first snowfall of the season where we live!

I must admit, even though I was secretly hoping that we might skip winter weather all together, it did look beautiful while it was falling!

So since we are working on delivering great soup recipes this month, the soup that I chose for this week is a home run!

As I was going through my recipes this Cream of Crab soup popped out and I just knew that I had to make it…crab is a favorite of ours IN anything, ON anything, and WITH anything!

So I had a handwritten piece of paper, torn on one edge, folded and creased….but I was able to track down the original recipe online.

It just so happens that this recipe won the “Grand Prize” in the Soup Division of the Annual National Hard Crab Derby in Crisfield, Maryland, on Labor Day weekend of each year. So since it was the winner in 2000, I just had to replicate it!

Turns out, that the recipe is gluten free!

The only thing that I changed was instead of using cornstarch, I used 1 T of arrowroot starch in ½ cup of  water to thicken the soup.

Yep, that was it!

And let me say, this soup is a full fat dinner or lunch…no skimping here! And surely not for the lactose intolerant, unless Lactaid tabs work for you!

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So here is the recipe, credited to Ms. Char Ann Smith…great job, Ms. Smith!

Award Winning Maryland Cream of Crab Soup

INGREDIENTS

1 pint whole milk

1 quart half-and-half

2 pints heavy whipping cream

1 lb jumbo lump crab meat (only from Maryland will do!)

1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped

3 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning

1⁄4 cup butter

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄8 teaspoon pepper

cornstarch

water

dry sherry, to taste

 

DIRECTIONS

Bring milk, half and half, and heavy whipping cream to a boil. Add crab meat, fresh parsley, Old Bay Seasoning, butter, salt and pepper. When it starts to boil, make a paste of cornstarch and water and add to thicken soup.

To serve, sprinkle each serving with a bit of Old Bay and chopped parsley. Serve with oyster crackers and a small cream pitcher of sherry on the side for diners to add to taste.

That’s how we do it in Maryland!

© Char Ann Smith of Bishopville, MD

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To go along with the cream of crab soup, I decided to make a salad with some great ingredients that I had in my fridge.

I wanted it to be fresh and have a lot of texture.

Here’s what I came up with!

Roasted Squash with Beets, Spinach, and Feta

INGREDIENTS

2 acorn squashes, peeled and cut into bite-size pieces (you can use any squash you choose)

4 organic beets, roasted and cut into bite-size pieces

Bed of organic baby spinach (or greens of your choice)

1 (15 oz) can of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

Pomegranate seeds

Salt and pepper to taste

Feta cheese crumbles for garnish

Dressing:

¼ cup orange juice (from the carton or freshly squeezed)

⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil

DIRECTIONS

Preheat the oven to 400˚ and when ready, roast acorn squash with olive oil, a sprinkle of Autumn Harvest spice blend from Calicutts (or pumpkin pie spice), salt and pepper for approximately 40 minutes or until tender. Turn halfway during roasting.

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Whisk the dressing for the salad and set aside.

When the squash is done, cool slightly and then begin assembling the salad.

Place a bed of organic baby spinach in the bottom of a bowl, top with roasted squash (it smells amazing), organic beets, pomegranate seeds, salt (not too much, since the feta cheese is salty), and pepper.

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Drizzle with orange/oil dressing.

Garnish with feta cheese.

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© 2016, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk whisks

Oh, so delightful!

So soup and salad definitely warmed up our night!

 

How about you? Soup and salad?

Enjoy!

© 2016, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The “Souper” days of January!

Monica and Daria say:

Happy New Year, everyone!

2016 is here and we are excited about the possibilities to come in the next 12 months!

Since our weather here has been so mild, we haven’t been thinking about one of our favorite foods….soup!

However, these past few nights have reminded us that we are, in fact, in the season of winter and are now feeling its frigid temperatures. When we took Molly for her daily walk today, it was an amazing 16 degrees….did we say 16 degrees at 2:30 in the afternoon?

Yikes!

Anyway, this is now soup weather and every week in January we will be sharing a great homemade soup recipe with you!

Our first recipe is for a lentil soup that is not only super easy but is super good!

Lentils, which grow in pods and are part of the legume family, are a super food. They not only help lower cholesterol but pack some serious fiber. If you love your heart, lentils are the way to go because these little powerhouses contain not only fiber, but magnesium and folate, which help prevent heart disease.

So, how about a great recipe for lentil soup?

You got it!

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Lentil Soup

Ingredients:

2 T coconut oil

1 medium onion, chopped

3 medium sized carrots, peeled and chopped into rounds

1 T minced garlic

½ tsp dried thyme

½ tsp kosher salt

½ cup chunky tomato sauce

1 ½ cups lentils (we used orange hulled lentils)

32 oz unsalted chicken or veggie stock (we used chicken)

Dash of pepper

1 T red wine vinegar

Directions:

Chop onion, peel and chop carrots, and mince garlic. Set aside.

Heat the olive or coconut oil over medium heat.

Add onion and carrot rounds and sauté until soft (about 5 minutes). Add the minced garlic, dried thyme, and salt. Stir into mixture for about 30 seconds.

Now stir in chunky tomato sauce and cook for 1 minute.

Add lentils and cook for an additional 1 minute.

Now add the 32 oz of stock and make sure that the mixture is covered with the liquid. If not, add some additional stock or even water.

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Bring the mixture to a rolling boil and then lower the heat to simmer. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes to one hour, or until the lentils are tender.

Season with additional scant amount of salt and pepper as taste requires.

Stir in the vinegar just before serving.

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The flavors in this soup blended so well; each spoonful was delicious!

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It really hit the spot on a blustery day!

Hope you get a chance to try this recipe….it won’t disappoint and you will gain some nutritious benefits, too!

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Enjoy!

© 2016, Monica & Daria of glutenfreedoubletalk  whisks