Monday, December 10, 2012

Spaghetti Squash Pie

This morning I wanted something eggy and bakey and healthy for breakfast. (Most people would label my breakfast choices as lunch-like, so take this as a lunch idea if you are normal.) Cooked spaghetti squash was my base. (Oh, and here's the idea - buy huge spaghetti squashes and cut them in half and bake them on baking sheets filled with a bit of water. Scoop out the squash noodles and use for several meals, since the squash keeps for days in the fridge, or even longer frozen.Then you will have cooked spaghetti squash lying around as inspiration to make yummy, carb-less entrees.)

This is an approximation of my recipe. I am making it bigger than my single-serving stovetop experiment.

Spaghetti Squash Pie

1.) Cook together in large cast-iron skillet on medium heat. You wants lots of nice little brown meat crumbles.
1 tsp. olive oil
1/2 lb. turkey burger 
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. ground fennel (optional)
dash of dry cayenne pepper and/or additional seasonings of choice (oregano,onion powder, rosemary...)
Spread the crumbles around evenly in the skillet. This is your baking pan. 

2.) Turn on the oven - 350 F.

3 cups cooked spaghetti squash 
4 eggs
1/2 cup crumbly soft cheese (like feta or romano or cottage curds - I used goat cheese)
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. dry basil 
1/2 tsp. dry parsley, or 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh
1/2 tsp. salt

Grab a fork and mix everything together in a dish. (Like the same one the spaghetti squash was in.) Stir until the eggs are well mixed in. Dump or pour the pie batter over meat crumbles in the skillet. Bake in the oven until puffy and dry through the middle. I made my small version on top of the stove with the skillet covered. It got a little bit brown on the bottom. Baking is better, and also necessary if you're making a two or three-serving version. 

Serve in wedges alongside a nice green salad of spring mix with Brianna's dressing.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Pictureless Pomegranate Salad

This healthy salad is a delicious addition to holiday or winter meals. The fact that it was consumed before photographs could be taken should not prevent my recording the recipe, but it is rather pretty. I made it to suit my dietary needs - no sugar, no dairy, no apples, and lots of nutritious health benefits. For those with high non-sweetened tolerance, the honey and cinnamon can be omitted, and it tastes quite zingy and delicious. The walnuts help to cut the acidity of the lemon, and also add crunch to the sometimes unpleasant chewiness of the pomegranate seeds.

Winter Fruit Salad

Toss fruit:
- Seeds of one pomegranate, precipitated into a dish
- One navel orange, peeled and chopped across sections into bite-size bits
- 1/2 cup walnuts, pieces or chopped

Mix dressing:
- Juice of one lemon
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- 1/4 tsp. cinnamon and/or ginger (optional)

Pour dressing over fruit and nuts and toss again. Chill or serve immediately. Serves 2-4.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Fermented Grain Applesauce Snack Cake - Gluten Free

{No pictures, I know. Picture a thick moist spice cake without sugar or frosting}

Because I've considered experimenting with gluten-free yeast bread too time-consuming and high in the sacrifice of fiber for fluffiness and gluten-freeness, I've been experimenting with soaked/fermented grain quick bread. It's time-consuming if you count the soaking time, but not if you count what you actually do. Plus, there is only one wait-time between initial preparation and preparation to dump in the pan. The last batch of this cake-like bread that I made turned out addictively moist, grainy and delicious - as well as easy to digest, thanks to its hearty soaking.

It is unfortunate that I am an unprincipled dumper when it comes to cooking and baking. I smell, feel, look and jiggle and taste and, for the most part, hopelessly fail to measure. But I tried to keep track of some important things in this last and most-successful cake of moistness and tender, glutenless crumbs.

So here is the recipe!

STEP 1 - Before your all-night or all-day soak.

In large glass measuring cup or mixing bowl, combine

2 cups of gluten-free grain flours:
 (I used - 1 cup stone-ground cornmeal
 - 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
- 1/4 cup arrowroot or tapioca starch
-1/4 cup fine buckwheat kasha)
You could use brown rice flour, sorghum, teff, oats or oat bran (if you can) millet flour etc. - just make sure to use a combination of several, since most gluten-free flours have a flat, distinctive flavor when used alone. Coarse flours like cornmeal, oats and fine kasha lend a nice chewy texture, and a small amount of starch like arrowroot or tapioca adds softness and springy-ness).
1/2 teaspoon salt

Put on stove or in microwave to heat till hot - near but not fully boiling:
1 1/2 cups water

While the water heats, add on top of the mixed flours, but do not stir yet:
1/2 cup natural (un-sweetened) applesauce, or cooked 'seconds' apples (and/or prune baby food)
1-2 tsp. dark (blackstrap) molasses 
1 T Bragg's apple cider vinegar

Add hot water to flour and apple sauce and stir together till nice and batter-y. Add more flour or water or applesauce if it looks too dry or too wet. Cover with a plate or something and let sit over night, or all day , or all day and all night (or until next week if you are adventurous or have ADD). Feel free to stir it whenever you walk through the kitchen, but make sure it has time to soak - at least 8 hours, or longer if your kitchen is cold. You want the batter to sour and ferment a little. It might begin to smell 'spoiled' depending on what flours you used, but that's okay - the baking will take care of it.

STEP 2 - Before baking:

Grease an 8x8 baking pan with butter.

Uncover your wonderful smelly grain goop and add, stirring heartily with a fork or whisk after each addition,
2 eggs, or 2 egg-yolks and an egg
1/4 cup softened/melted butter, grapeseed oil, coconut oil or other desired fat
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. cloves (and/or of nutmeg, ginger too - whatever you like)
1/2 tsp. buffered Vitamin C powder (optional!)
1 tsp. aluminum-free baking powder or baking soda, or half of each

Pour batter into pan. Sprinkle with chopped walnuts, or cinnamon or nutmeg, or coconut flakes, or nothing; or drizzle with rice milk and gently swirl with knife for an extra-moist bread. Bake at 350 - 375 F (I did 365) until set in center and brown at edges. (20 minutes? I didn't time it - it's too appetizing to forget about). Let cool in pan 10 minutes before eating. (Ha, as if I did that). Enjoy!

Refrigerate if any remains overnight, or it might start fermenting again. Not quite yummy. If you leave it out and that does happen, simply crumble the remainder of the 'spoiled' bread into your next batch for even better flavor. I often do this if there's some old stuff left when I want to make a new batch. No need to eat the old, stale bread when you can just crumble it into the new.

If anyone tries this recipe, let me know how it works and what you tweaked.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Rooty Fruity Hotdog Hash - GF, Grain-Free, Nightshade-Free

Today I made lunch like I do almost every day. Begin with a cast-iron skillet and a fridge of leftovers and end with something that no one in the world has ever eaten before. Sometimes it is quite tasty - today, tasty enough to write down the recipe.

We had leftover roasted parsnips in the fridge - not everyone has those, but they should since they make things so tasty. Just add some extra scrubbed and olive-oil slathered parsnips to the bottom of your next meat roast and see if you are fortunate enough to have any left for yummy hashes.

So here is the recipe...

Rooty Fruity Hotdog Hash - 1 serving

Add to well-buttered skillet:

- 1/4 cup sliced cooked parsnips
- 1/2 cup cooked beans (I used azuki beans. One could use cooked navy, northern or red beans)
- Nitrite-free turkey hotdogs - 1 or 2 sliced (I buy these for a reasonable price)
- 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp. ground fennel seed
- dash of black pepper and salt to taste

Saute on med-high until hotdogs begin to sizzle and warm through. Add a splash of chicken broth or unsweetened coconut milk if mixture begins to stick or become too brown. Peel and slice a mango. When mixture is done, turn off burner and chop desired amount of fresh mango into the mixture. Stir slightly, serve and eat.  (Any remaining mango may be eaten for dessert with fresh yogurt or coconut milk.)

I found that the spicy sweet tastes of parsnip and mango go very well together and complement the saltiness of hotdogs and blandness of the beans wonderfully. The fennel and ginger just give it more spicy delight. Try it sometime - try it with variations. It's great for people who like the convenience of hotdogs but can't eat buns or ketchup!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Flogurt & Berries

This breakfast/snack/dessert recipe is extremely adventurous, so only recommended for like-minded palates. But it is free of sugar (except minimal amount in natural berries), dairy, grains, soy, and starches - and it has a texture identical to yogurt.

Here it is.

Cook in saucepan over medium heat until vegetable pieces are tender:
2 cups chopped fresh cauliflower (1/2 small head)
1/3 cup coconut milk
1 T white wine vinegar
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1 T sunflower, coconut or grapeseed oil

Pour cauliflower mixture into blender and add
1/2 cup unsweetened almond (and/or coconut) milk 
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. lemon juice
Stevia glycerite drops to taste

Blend until very smooth. If cauliflower pieces are tender enough, this should not take more than a minute.

Pour 'flogurt' over fresh or frozen mixed berries. To serve as a dessert, the flogurt can be poured into a dish which has frozen berries on the bottom and allowed to sit in the refrigerator a couple hours before serving so the berries thaw.

Pureed cooked cauliflower is also delicious as a vanilla smoothie without the vinegar/lemon juice and with a little extra liquid. Try it with cinnamon or nutmeg.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Beans & Cabbage on a Trip

Cooked navy beans and steamed cabbage. Combining these does not produce culinary delight - more like a bland mush, and maybe other issues later. But it's what I had to work with, and I was determined to make it delightful, or at least interesting. So in the skillet they went.

A cup of cooked cabbage
A half cup of beans

Then it got interesting, and here is the recipe. 

Add to cabbage and beans in a cast-iron skillet:

1 tsp. butter
1/2 tsp. whole caraway seed

Stir and sautee` briefly. Then add:

1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
1/4 tsp. ground coriander 
1 tsp. ground ginger
1/3 cup coconut milk (we keep So Delicious refrigerated on hand)
1/2 tsp onion powder
Dash of black pepper
Salt to taste

Cook on med-high, stirring occasionally until thick and bubbly.
Remove heat and stir in
1 tsp. coconut oil

 Serve piping hot, topped with additional coconut milk, butter, or coconut oil if desired.  

(This could also be made with fresh onion, sauteed from the beginning with the caraway seed, instead of adding onion powder later.)