Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Join the party at my new home! New address/Same Great Info

Join the party at the new site!
I've taken my pots, pans, butter, olive oil, artichokes and capers over to Wordpress. Join the party and head over!

This way, all my blogs are in one convenient spot. Same great info and gluten free community, different address... If you follow this blog, be sure to head over to the new site and follow along so you don't miss anything. And if you're not following the Facebook site, head over to Facebook/Gluten Free in AZ.

We're at www.glutenfreeinaz.wordpress.com

See you there!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

My GF Pizza Obsession Continues at Detours Tavern

White pizza with kale, broccoli and mushrooms...YUM!
OK, once again we are back on pizza. I know, I know, you're sick of me harping on the GF pizza quest. It's my obsession to find something that comes close to real pizza, as you know. But trust me on this, it's working. Last night, I got closer than I've gotten in a long time.

A dear friend invited me to dinner and said, "I saw gluten free on the menu, so let's go." Of course, that made me nervous, who knows what's there and how they make it, right? But I always figure I can have a salad, and I'm touched that she thought of me and I love that she wanted to go with me.

Cut to a few nights later as we sit in Detours Tavern in Scottsdale. Not too much ambiance, more of a sports bar feel,  but not bad and it is clean. It used to be a Chinese restaurant that was anything but clean. So nice to see that gone at least. I checked the menu and noticed a few things I could order, but then noticed they had pizzas and a little note saying they had gluten-free pizza. Hmmm, after checking with the server, who assured me that they put the gf pizzas on a separate pan to bake and use separate utensils, I ordered a white pizza with kale, mushrooms and broccoli. One word-Wow! Thin, crispy, light, chewy, amazing. And it's huge, not the usual tiny GF pizza that costs a fortune and isn't worth the money. This did cost about $12, but it was totally worth it.

Of course, that meant I had to grill the poor guy for all the particulars. He said they get it from Sysco and he thought it was made in AZ somewhere. The owner wasn't there and he said he'd call me with the information. Of course, I couldn't wait for that so I checked on my phone and found out that Sysco has three GF pizza crusts available- Schar, Ener-G, and Pane Riso/Kingsmill. It didn't look like the Schar crusts, which I've seen before. But all the options have no eggs or gluten, which makes them work for EF/GF Daughter. Yay.
Quinoa salad over raw kale

My friend chose the quinoa salad over kale. It's filled with black beans, corn and more. Yummy! There was a light vinaigrette over the salad and mixed in with the kale, which was raw on the bottom. The quinoa flavor wasn't masked by the dressing, which is sometimes the case with most restaurants. I'm getting this next time, if I can resist not eating another pizza.

And one thing this restaurant does is serve big entrees. We shared both and were stuffed when we were done. You could easily have shared with another person, but I'm sure glad nobody else was there.

I highly recommend this place for a relaxed, casual dining experience. There aren't a ton of GF items on the menu, but what they have looks and tastes wonderful. They have a full bar and flat screens all over, so I'm guessing on game night it's The Place To Be. My friend said their sweet potato fries were wonderful, but unfortunately they are fried in contaminated oil with breaded food. Only bummer of the night.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Gluten-Free PB&J The Way The Big Girls Do It

Switch out fresh fruit for the jelly

My mom turned me on to this gourmet version of a PB&J. Simply toast your favorite gluten-free bread (I use Udi's) and top with a natural chunky peanut butter, sliced fresh strawberries and a drizzle of raw honey. It's light, healthy, and a wonderful way to start the day. I had this with my coffee this morning and it was a real treat.

I've also used bananas and blueberries, and my daughter has used sliced grapes. Someone else suggested blueberries and I'm thinking even sliced peaches, apples, or pears would be great. The sky's the limit when it comes to fresh, in-season fruit. Have fun.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Gluten-free Quick Taco Bites

Wanting something quick and tasty for dinner? Company drop by and you're stuck? Check your cabinets, you've probably got everything you need.

Gluten-free Taco Bites
1 bag Tostito scoops
1 can black beans
1 cup shredded Mexican cheese
1 container Trader Joe's Mango/Papaya Salsa (any salsa will do, but this is my favorite store-bought)
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 pinch salt

1. Place chips face up on a platter in one layer.
2. Drop a little cheese in each cup and microwave for about 10-20 seconds to just melt the cheese. (covering plate with a paper towel helps the melting to even out.)
3. Heat beans in a small pot with garlic and paprika. Add a little handful of cheese to thicken the beans.
4. Remove chips and drop about 1 tsp of the beans into each cup. Top with a drop of the salsa.


These are great as appetizers, or do what I did and treat yourself to a plate for dinner.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Gluten-free, egg-free, fresh blueberry muffins

Now that Darling Daughter is egg-free, it makes baking a little more difficult. We don't want to give up everything, but we also don't want her skin rashes to return so it's EF we go. Along with being gluten free, this means we've got another challenge on our hands. And, as you know dear chefs, I love a challenge.

This morning I wanted to wake up with yummy, fresh blueberry muffins. What I came up with are sweet, moist and light blueberry muffins with no egg in sight. How, you ask? (I know you're asking, go ahead) Simple, I scoured the Internet to find out what I could use for replacements. I have already used flax/water mixture, but wanted something that would be a little more moist. That led me to apple sauce or pureed fruit of some kind. Since I had apple sauce in the fridge, easy fix.

The recipe that follows is a hybrid of The Cake Doctor Bakes Gluten Free and my own tweaks and changes to eliminate the eggs. It does have butter in it, but if you wanted a vegan muffin I'm sure you could use a little oil or vegan margarine in its place.
Blueberry muffins, perfect for Fourth of July!

Gluten-free, Egg-free Blueberry Muffin
1 box Gluten Free Pantry Old Fashioned Cake & Cookie Mix
2 Tbs Ground Flax
5 Tbs warm water
4 Tbs apple sauce (natural, no HFCS or sugar)
1/4 cup raw sugar
1 Tbs GF vanilla extract
3/4 cup grapefruit juice (recipe called for OJ, but I didn't have any. This worked out great)
1 Tbs fresh lemon juice
1 stick butter, melted
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries

1. Preheat oven to 350.

2. Mix flax with hot water and mix well. Place in fridge to cool.

3. Reserve 1 Tbs of the cake mix in a small bowl.

4. Add remaining cake mix, apple sauce, sugar, vanilla, grapefruit juice, lemon juice and butter. Mix well. I used a fork, no need to pull out a mixer for this.

5. Add flax mixture to muffin mix after stirring well. You may need to add a little more water to make sure it's at egg consistency before adding. Mix this into the muffin batter well.

6.  Toss blueberries with the reserved cake mix and then fold into muffin mix gently.

7. Line muffin tins with liners and scoop out mix into cups. Fill about 3/4 full. You'll get about 17-20 muffins, depending on the size of the blueberries you use.

8. Optional: Sprinkle top of muffins with a pinch of raw sugar to get a crispy top.

9. Bake for 20-24 minutes until golden brown.

10. Let cool for a few minutes, then remove from pan and complete cooling. I dare you to let them cool all the way before eating them!