The juicy taste of summer!

Monica (mom) says:

How happy was I when I spotted this lovely little fruit at the farmers’ market the other day?

It’s the pluot….a plum/apricot hybrid with a huge flavor!

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Developed by Floyd Zaiger, who crossed plums and apricots, the flavor palette of this juicy wonder is mostly plum, with the feel of an apricot in your mouth! He also came up with and trademarked the name “pluot.”

Once these little treasures are picked from the tree, they continue to ripen. So if you turn them upside down on your kitchen counter, somewhere out of direct sunlight, let the magic happen. Once they are as ripe as you want them to be, store them unwrapped in your refrigerator for up to three days.

Most people claim that the pluot should be eaten at room temperature, but I prefer mine cold. If you are going to use them in a recipe, however, it is best to have them at room temperature because the skin can taste bitter.

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I remember climbing and eating plums from our trees as a little girl….the pluot is the next best thing to that memory!

© 2014, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

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Italy’s answer to hors d’oeuvres!

Monica (mom) says:

What can whet a gathering’s appetite with just its looks?

The Italian antipasto!

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“Antipasto” comes from the Latin root “anti” meaning before and “pastus” meaning meal. It really is the perfect start to any meal!

Oh, this lovely salad provides an appealing mixture of textures, tastes, and especially color! It invites guests to relax and indulge for a moment or two before the main course. And since it’s mainly veggies and proteins, it’s naturally gluten-free!

Since we were going to a cookout to celebrate Memorial Day at my sister’s new home, I decided to make an antipasto with a slightly different take.

I upped the nutrition for the greens by using baby kale, baby spinach, and baby chard as the base. Then, I chopped organic carrots, and celery. Everyone is our family is addicted to black olives, so I chopped one can of these, too. Of course you need some fresh mozzarella to add the cheese component and since the family also loves pepperoni, I chopped one stick of that, too (not my personal favorite, but majority rules, right?). Last, but not least, baby red tomatoes were added!

I brought along a bowl of cannellini beans, too, for anyone who wanted some extra protein.  A balsamic vinaigrette topped it all off!

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Antipasto…..it’s all in the presentation!

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© 2014, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

Antique shopping in Lancaster, PA!

Daria (daughter) says:

After filling two cake orders for the same day last week, I haven’t had that much time to myself to just have fun & relax. So, mama bear decided to come down for a visit on my day off to spend some quality time doing what we love…..going to antique shops ❤ She found a pamphlet that had some antique shops & places that refurbish & up-cycle old materials that the ordinary mind may not think to put together. These people are truly extraordinary with the materials they use to create their finished product!!

For my dining room, I’ve been looking for a medium-sized dresser or buffet table for storage & one that can be used as a backdrop for pictures of my products that I will be posting for this blog! So we were on a mission!

We decided to explore a place called Building Character. It’s 10,000 square feet of historic warehouses with 45+ shops in downtown Lancaster, PA.

IT WAS AMAZING!!!!!

I found everything I could have ever wanted and more!! As soon as I investigated the old dresser that caught my eye with the dove tail locking drawers, I knew right away that it was made very well!! I love the back of it as much as the front! They used an old fence that they up-cycled & painted in black & red to support it, instead of just using a plain piece of flat wood. In place of drawer handles, they simply made pull handles of twine knots…..too adorable & such character!!

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Also, mom got me the cutest little table to put at the end of our hallway. I dressed it up with a lamp & some mementos to be able to see every day ❤

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After all of our shopping we were famished! We found a wonderful Asian Fusion and Sushi restaurant called Oka. Since it featured Chinese, Japanese, and Thai food, we were in heaven! I love to try Pad Thai in different restaurants…..each place has a unique flavor! This one was the maybe the best ever!

Mom had the Pineapple Snapper with asparagus and a sweet/sour mango sauce. She said it was delightful!

Check out our food pictures on Instagram @gfdoubletalk (or link on the right hand side of our blog!)

We do well in this type of restaurant because they use rice noodles and as long as you stay away from the soy sauce, you are usually okay. We do, however, always ask about the ingredients used in the dishes and tell the server about having celiac disease!

Lancaster County has such amazing shops, so if you ever travel to PA, you will not be disappointed passing through this area! Between antique shops, Amish bakeries, local produce & farmers’ markets…..you will never get bored! Plus, Dutch Wonderland & Hershey Park are not too far away to visit with the kids=)

Can’t wait to get a little less chaotic & start taking blogging pix!!!

Hope you are all having a wonderful day!!

Take care=)

 

© 2014, Daria of glutenfreedoubletalk

It’s National Quiche Lorraine Day!

Oh thank you, French cuisine, for this versatile little dish (even though it originated in Germany)!

It seems that quiche gets a bad rap in mass media and I have no idea why. If it’s made correctly, the simple quiche stands shoulder to shoulder with some of the greatest cheese entrées. All you need is a good quiche and a good salad and viola…..dinner is done!

The best thing about quiche is its versatility! You can make it traditionally with sausage or bacon, or go all veggie (broccoli), or my favorite – crab quiche. It also can be made with or without a crust. For gluten-free eaters, not having to worry about making a crust, helps elevate its status considerably. Either way, crust or crustless, you have yourself a tasty meal!

Since my hubby loves to help in the kitchen (lucky person, I know), this quiche was made with a crust. The crust recipe is an old family favorite that he de-glutenized! It’s my Mom’s water whip pie crust and it never seems to fail….now the gluten-free variation is not easy to roll out, so he takes portions of it and makes flat pieces with his hands and pats it into the pie plate. Any way that works for you is fine….trial and error, my friends!

I almost always make my quiche without a crust because it’s quicker and does not flare my arthritis as much. I’ve also experimented with making individual baby quiches by using a mega muffin tin and this recipe yielded 8 and they baked for about 35 minutes. Again, whatever works for you!

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Recipe for Quiche Lorraine (or variation)

4 eggs

1 ½ cups evaporated milk

1 T gluten-free all-purpose flour

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp pepper

¼ tsp nutmeg

1 medium onion, cut in eighths

1 ½ cups Swiss Cheese, cubed

1 pound pork sausage, crisply fried and crumbled OR ¾ pound sliced bacon, crisply fried and crumbled OR filling of choice (broccoli, veggie medley, fresh crabmeat)

I  9” unbaked pie shell (optional if you are making a crustless quiche)

Preheat oven to 375˚F. In a blender or Cuisinart put eggs, evaporated milk, flour, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Cover and process until well blended. Stop and add onion pieces and cubed Swiss cheese. Cover and process on Grind for 3 cycles.

Sprinkle your filling of choice in the bottom of unbaked shell or bare 9” pie plate (if you do not want to bake with a crust.) Pour egg mixture over filling. Sprinkle some nutmeg on top.

Bake for 35-45 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.

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Mom’s Water Whip Pie Crust

¾ cup shortening

¼ cup boiling water

2 ¼ cups flour (GF version: can use all-purpose GF flour, or 2 cups all-purpose GF flour & ¼ soy flour*)

1 T milk (Lactaid if needed)

1 tsp salt

Whip shortening and water with a fork until smooth and creamy. Add milk, flour and salt. Work into a nice dough ball.

*soy flour gives it a darker hue with a hint of a nutty flavor

 

© 2014, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk   whisks

 

The absolute best thing about Lewie’s making the pie crust is his making “lumpy cookies!”

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If our girls were “helping” us bake when they were little and if we had some leftover dough, we would always fashion it into several cookies, sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon before baking them on a separate cookie sheet (and still do to this day).

My mom had started this tradition many years ago, when my three sisters and I were little girls.

The name “lumpy cookies” started with my sisters’ children and it has been passed on with the greatest fondness. Every one of the nieces and nephews know about “lumpy cookies”….they’re the best!

So the best advice when making quiche, go for the crust….because you’ll want “lumpy cookies” too!

Happy baking!

© 2014, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

 

Hidden gluten….it can be anywhere!

A good friend (thanks, Patrick!) sent us this article and we wanted to share it with all of you!

The article, written by registered dietitian, Tamara Duker Freuman, discusses hidden sources of gluten. When we were first diagnosed, I remember being so afraid of ingesting something we shouldn’t and of course, it happened more than a few times!

Best advice from us: READ THE LABEL! This can’t be emphasized enough.

The other HUGE piece of the puzzle regarding gluten-free safety is cross-contamination. Why are we going on and on….here’s the article!

http://health.usnews.com/health-news/blogs/eat-run/2012/09/11/5-sources-of-hidden-gluten-in-your-diet

 

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