Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Baked Cinnamon Cake Donuts

Let's face it, I love a good donut.  I cannot lie.  I might be Homer Simpson.  I don't necessarily drool over donuts, but I could very easily.  The local GF Bakery has lovely donuts, they're fried.  I have no patience for frying anything.  I'm more of a baker.

Recently while reading a magazine, I noticed a recipe for a baked cinnamon donut.  Sigh.  Called for real flour.  Started my brain churning.  My wonderful friend, Amy, gave me a donut pan and a long-john pan for Christmas.  So, I had the hardware.  It's making the software work that's the key.

Now, if you're looking for dense cake donuts, this is not that recipe.  If you're looking for light and fluffy yeast donuts, this is not that recipe.  If you're looking for something in the shape of a donut with a light and fluffy texture, this is the donut for YOU!  (and for me, I loved them!!!!)  When you let them cool, the exterior gets a sticky/crunchy outside with a soft fluffy inside.  I enjoyed that very much.  Even better, drip frosting over them.  Or douse them in butter and then cinnamon sugar.  The donut part itself is not overly sweet.

As with anything, confirm your sources for your ingredients are gluten-free.  I choose to use a lot of items from Aldi because they are clearly labeled when they are truly gluten-free.

Baked Cinnamon Cake Donuts

2 Cups GF Flour Blend (use your personal favorite here)
1 1/2 Cups Granulated Sugar
1 Tbs Baking Powder
1 Tsp Xanthan Gum
1 Tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/2 Tsp Ground Nutmeg
1/2 Tsp Kosher Salt
1 Large Egg, lightly beaten
1 1/4 Cup Whole Milk
2 Tbs Unsalted Butter, melted
2 Tsp Vanilla Extract

1 Tub of Betty Crocker Vanilla Frosting (yep!  Gluten-free!!!)
4 Tbs melted Butter
1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
1 Tbs Cinnamon

Preheat Oven to 350 degrees.

Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.  In a separate bowl, mix together egg, milk, butter and vanilla extract.  Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients (also known as the "muffin method", thank you AB).  Mix until combined, do not over mix.

Gently spoon into a donut pan or long-john pan.  Bake for 17-19 minutes (long-johns will take 25 minutes or more) until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Allow to cool in pan for about 5 minutes before removing to cooling rack.  Allow to cool completely before frosting.

For the frosting, I melted about 1/4 cup or so of the Betty Crocker in a bowl for 8 seconds and gently spooned over the cooled donuts.  This will allow it to cool as a thick glaze on top.


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Gluten-free Waffles - KAF Recipe Review

Hey there folks, how are you doing out there in GF world?

I know.  Homemade GF Waffles.  Why make something GF when they really aren't that expensive out there in the "real" world.  Well, convenience aside, I do like being in control of the ingredients that go into my food, and with all the "styrofoam in our food" scares lately, I thought I'd give waffles a try.  That and my amazing husband, who gave me a Cuisinart 5-in-1 Griddler for Christmas,  also got me the waffle plates, and quite frankly, I was DYING to try them out!!!

Since re-entering the GF world, I've gotten a little braver again.  Decided to make my own flour blend. Grateful for a local store that does bulk foods, I was able to spend about $20 and make a HUGE batch of gluten free flour.  Here's my breakdown, and so far, it's worked very nicely in all my recipes:

White Rice Flour (I got one that was extra milled, so less gritty)
Brown Rice Flour
Sweet White Sorghum Flour
Tapioca Starch

I did 6 cups of each and mixed well.

Some of the recipes out there added Xanthan Gum, I prefer to add mine per recipe, when mixed in a flour like this, you can never really be sure that you getting the correct amount.  I follow the rule of thumb of 1/2 tsp per cup in a "breadier" or "cakier" type recipe.

Armed with my new flour, my Griddler fitted with waffle plates, and my whisk, I set out to make the perfect waffle.  Ooooops, I need a recipe!!!!  In comes King Arthur Flour - you know, the flour people who now sell a GF flour??? - they had one!  The  KAF GF Pancake & Waffle Recipe was easy to follow and worked like a charm! Thanks KAF!!!

I doubled their recipe for them so that I would have some to freeze.  In my Griddler "waffle iron" it made 5 4-waffle flats.  So, basically, 20 individual waffles.  I did freeze them flat after cutting apart and I warm them up in my toaster.  They are SO, SO, SO good, and so much better than store bought!

The were light and fluffy in all the right places, crispy and crunch in all the right places, and doused with a good syrup OR slathered in crunchy peanut butter, they just satisfy that waffle urge.

Give them a try, I believe you won't be disappointed!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Triple Decker Brownies - AKA Devil Bombs

Okay, so it's floating around Pinterest, FB and the general internet world.  This picture of an individual brownie pan, layers of chocolate chip cookie dough, a Reese's Peanut Butter cup and covered in brownie batter.  All set to bake for 18 minutes at 350.  It looks delicious.

But, when you're gluten-free, a recipe that is made of all pre-made foods is hard to just make.  I've heard that there is a Pillsbury version of a pre-made gluten-free cookie dough, I have only seen this one place, and I didn't feel like running out to get just one ingredient.  And you COULD use a pre made brownie mix, though, I suspect you would have some leftover (gee, leftover brownie batter is a BAD thing????)  So, this is what I did to make mine.

FIRST, I used a muffin pan instead of a special unitasker (thank you, AB for such an amazing word). SECOND, I made a half batch of my favorite Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe (which happens to be the one on the back of the Baker's Corner Semi-sweet Mini Chocolate Chips (Aldi brand, gluten-free, it's awesome and inexpensive).  Then I made a half batch of the King Arthur's Gluten-Free Brownies.  I made the pan easy to clean up by using the Reynold's Wrap Aluminum Foil Baking Liners.  (I removed the white paper liner and used ONLY the aluminum foil liner).  I also sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.  I unwrapped my 6 packages of Reese's and began my layers:

1 Scoop Cookie Dough, pressed flat
1 Reese's PB cup, lightly pressed into the cookie dough
Cover with brownie batter

I did end up with some leftover cookie batter.  And brownie batter, too.  Oh, for shame.  LOL :)  Of course, I baked it.  LOL :)

I made the pan easy to clean up by using the Reynold's Wrap Aluminum Foil Baking Liners.  (I removed the white paper liner and used ONLY the aluminum foil liner).  I also sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

I try to be honest in advertising, the brownie did "sink" in the middle, which I kind of expected.  Truly, this effects appearance and not taste. :)

I also needed to bake a bit longer, not sure if it was the pan or the fact that it was gluten-free.  So, go for about 23-25 minutes vs. the 18 minutes.

Allow to cool completely.  This, I believe, is the hardest step in the entire process.  Waiting for these to cool is torture.  This is why I have renamed them Devil Bombs.  Only the Devil would make you wait for these.  Only the Devil.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Mama F's Mega Slaw

I found some in the fridge and was able to take a picture! I thought it was all gone,  in my house, I actually take that as high flattery.  My kids, especially, love my coleslaw.  In fact, they measure all coleslaws on a scale from 1 to Mom's.  I decided to shake it up a bit this time and make it a little differently.  The sauce was the same, but what I put in was different.  It was a big hit, as shown by the near empty container.

Mama F's Mega Slaw

1 16 oz Bag Coleslaw Mix
1 12 oz Bag Broccoli Slaw Mix
1/8-1/4 Cup Red Wine Vinegar
1 Cup Mayonnaise
1 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp Sugar
Ground Black Pepper, to taste
1/2-1 Tsp Celery Seed, to taste

In a very large bowl, add 1/8 Cup red wine vinegar.  Dissolve salt and sugar into the vinegar.  Add the Mayonnaise.  This is where you adjust the vinegar, if it's not tart enough, add 1 Tbs at a time to desired tartness.  Mix in slaw mixes.  Add pepper & celery seed to taste.  Allow to marinate in fridge at least 1 hour before serving.

Oh, and don't expect leftovers. :)

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Crock-Pot Chicken Burgers Divine

I think one of the most frustrating things when you first convert to a GF lifestyle is crock pot meals.  The crockpot is a source for true, down-home, comfort food.  Most recipes call for Cream of Something soup, or have pasta, or some other prefab ingredient that cannot be found gluten free.

Enter GF Convenience foods that I never knew existed, and aren't even touted as GF.  But should be!

I made this dinner a few weeks ago, my husband and son went wild over it.  I made it again tonight, just to make sure it was not a fluke.  It wasn't.  Normally, I serve over mashed cauliflower, but tonight I splurged and baked potatoes before I left for gymnastics with my youngest.   Let me tell you, the gravy made from this meal over baked potatoes is just over-the-moon deluxious! :)

I hope you enjoy!

Crock-Pot Chicken Burgers Divine

2 Packages Purdue Short-cuts Spinach & Garlic Chicken Burgers (the Oven Roasted would be good, too)
2 Cans Progresso Creamy Mushroom Soup
1 10 oz package baby bella mushrooms, sliced
1 medium onion, peeled, halved and sliced thin

In a 5 or 6 quart crockpot, lay half the onions slices on the bottom, top with half of the sliced mushrooms, top with 4 burgers.  Pour over one can of the soup.  Repeat layering and top with last can of soup.   Cook on low for 4 hours.

Serve over mashed potatoes, rice, mashed cauliflower, or your favorite side dish.

This creates a lot of gravy, which becomes this rich and deliciously decadent mushroom soup if you reheat and add a little bit of cream or stock.  Don't let all that wondrous flavor go to waste! :)

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Gluten-free Fried Rice

I don't know about you, but when going gluten free, I realized that Chinese Takeout would really no longer be a choice.  Many years ago, before going gluten free the first time, we used to order Chinese every Sunday night.  It was our family tradition.  My kids liked it, my husband liked it, I liked the night off cooking.  The first time I went gluten free, I was sad, no more Chinese Takeout on Sunday nights.  I might even have cried.  Maybe.  I mean, my husband's and my first day almost 20 years ago was for Chinese Food.  It held/holds a special place in my heart.  Of course I made do.  And when I went back to eating gluten, I happily consumed Chinese again.

Last week, after a tiring day on Sunday, we decided to order Chinese food.  I had to order mine steamed without sauce.  It was "okay", and I doused it with Saj-J Gluten-free Tamari sauce.  But it wasn't the same.  I watched my kids down Fried Rice, dumplings and Chicken & Broccoli.   It was good.  But missing that "Chinese Takeout" element for me!

Armed with two pints of steamed white rice, and my bottle of San-J, tonight, I decided to make my own fried rice.  The Results were well worth it!  Everyone enjoyed it.  I put it in the leftover containers just to make it "feel" authentic!

Gluten-free Fried Rice

2 Pints Leftover Chinese Steamed Rice
San-J Gluten-free Tamari (see directions for amount, it will vary on the rice)
1 tsp Nakano Rice Wine Vinegar
16 oz bag Frozen Mixed Veggies (I used Cascadian Farms), defrosted
1/2 lb Leftover Cooked meat, diced -  your favorite (I used cooked Turkey breast tenderloins, but you could do chicken, pork, beef, or none)
3 Tbs Vegetable Oil
1 Tbs Sesame Oil
2 Cloves Garlic, peeled but left whole
1/3 - 1/2 Cup green onion, thin sliced, greens only
2 eggs, beaten
Sesame Seeds,  for garnish

Break up rice in a large bowl, and toss with rice wine vinegar.

In a large wok or skillet, heat the vegetable oil and sesame oils on med-high heat.  Once the oil is hot, add garlic cloves (whole) and allow to cook in the oil.  The the garlic is lightly bubbled, brown and soft, remove from oil, set aside and save.

Add rice to wok and press into the wok.  Allow to cook for about 3-5 minutes, and stir around.  Pour San-J Tamari sauce over the rice to make brown - circle the pan two times and do a shake or two in the center.  Continue to stir the rice around.

Add defrosted vegetables on top of rice.  Circle the pan again with San-J Tamari sauce. Cover and allow to "steam" for about 3-5 minutes.  While this is happening, dice the cooked garlic very finely.  Remove cover and stir vegetables into the rice.  Add diced meat of choice and stir again.  Cover for another 3 minutes.

After this, create a "well" in the center of the wok.  Add beaten egg and cover.  Allow egg to cook in the well for about 2 to 3 minutes until starting to set.  Stir eggs as best you can in the well and allow to finish cooking.  Only stir into the rice/vegetable/meat mixture after completely cooked.

Add green onions, minus about 2 Tbs, and mix well.  Remove rice from heat.

Sprinkle with remaining green onions and sesame seeds prior to serving.


Monday, February 3, 2014

Snow Day Fun - Paw Print Pops

Due to the outrageous storm outside, and the 6" plus inches of snow that have fallen since 7 this morning (no lie!), I've had to waylay my plans to go food shopping for the gymnastics meet that is happening this weekend at my daughter's gym.  Instead, I prepping the Paw Print pops that will be for sale at the Concessions Stand.

Was happy to find that the Make & Mold Chocolates sold by A.C. Moore stores is gluten-free.  :)  I'm also finding that doing this is easier than I thought it was going to be!  I was always sort of afraid of doing candy molds, but it's working really well, and I'm having fun, to boot.  In spite of the white stuff coming down outside my windows!