Wednesday, November 14, 2007

MMmmm good, it's good to make Progress, I mean Progresso!

We've been eating home a lot lately. My husband and I decided to start being more financially responsible....there's no place like home. Lately, that is! I've been experimenting and cooking some interesting dishes, thanks to my blog surfing.
I've observed how many of you are resorting to weekly menus. I love the idea and want to start participating. I know that Sea, from Book of Yum has been doing weekly menus for a while as well as Natalie, Gluten Free Mommy. I know there are many more and your names are on the tip of my tongue.

For now, I've made three meals this week that pleased the palates. Monday, I made Coconut Chicken, a recipe borrowed from Mrs. Gluten Free Mommy. The recipe calls for tortilla chips but I substituted gf corn flake crumbs. The chicken was yummy but honestly, the wonderful dipping sauce was the icing on the cake! Orange marmalade, hellman's dijonaisse, dash of curry, chopped fresh ginger...ooh, can you just taste it?

This past Sunday I indulged myself in Macy's home department. The pressure cookers were calling my name and I felt obligated to answer. I know that the Kuhn-rikon is highly recommended but my pocketbook was leaning towrds a more reasonably priced pressure cooker. Linens and Things and Macys sells the Fagor brand. I bought the FAGOR ELITE 6 QT. model. The original price was $90.00, and with the sale ($69.99) AND a $15.00 coupon it came to $55.00. What a deal! One of the web sites I found, Miss Vickie's Pressure Cooking Recipes, recommended the Kuhn first, and the Fagor second.

Anyway, last night I made Chicken Caccitore in 35 minutes. It took longer to prepare the chicken, onions, mushrooms, wine (of course)and more than it did to cook it. After it comes up to pressure it took 9 minutes to cook. Then, I made a Chicken Stock and froze it. (I will scrape off the excess fat when I defrost the chicken stock)

With my new FOODSAVER, we have been purchasing large quantities of food and freezing them in portions. This morning, I took out a 1 lb. 3 oz. package of ground sirloin. When I blog surfed during my break at work I found Going Gluten free's blog. She had a recipe for Turkey Dijon Mushroom Pasta....sounded interesting. If you click on the link, type TURKEY and search her blog you will scroll down and find the recipe. I substituted ground sirloin but I know that the turkey would be a better choice. So, KUDOS go to Going Gluten Free for sharing the recipe. And of course, the Tinkyada pasta is my only choice when using pasta. Just remember to immediately pour cold water over it to stop the cooking.

Have a great Thursday....thanks for sharing your recipes!


Sunday, November 11, 2007

B and B's in Sonoma Valley??

Good morning...Happy Sunday to one and all....Let's all take the time to remember those who served and are currently serving our country...may they be safe from harm and may they know that we appreciate them.

I am going to Sonoma with my twin sister(fraternal!) next summer and am searching for a B and B that accomodates gf diners. I did find one but am asking for help from the celiac community to find the BEST one!

I went to Napa two summers ago and stayed at a wonderful B and B, but that was before I became a committed gf diner. The owner of the CANDLELIGHT INN, Wendy, did say that she would accomodate me but I am going to Sonoma and want to be closer to that valley. The food at the CANDLELIGHT INN was spectacular, the ambiance wonderful and the close proximity to downtown AND the vineyards was great. It took us approx. 8-10 mins. to get to downtown Napa and 15 mins. to get to the vineyards. If you need some great recommendations for wineries, look no more. We found some that were wonderful!

For now, there's no turning back. I want to live long enough to see my children have children!(and to annoy them!!)Let me know if you can help! (The picture at the top of my blog (in pink outfit) is in the backyard of THE CANDLELIGHT INN)


Sunday, November 04, 2007

It's a start!

Sunday evening...had a relaxing day cooking yummy gf foods. I tried Ellen's Roasted Chicken recipe with honey, pomegranate juice, oj. and more. It was delicious! I also made split pea soup, recommended and posted by Ellen of I Am Gluten Free. Thanks Ellen! I don't have a pressure cooker so I made it in a large pot. It simmered for hours and was also yummy!(Recipe below) Good news! Whole Foods brand, 365, has come out with some gf mixes. Pie crusts, chocolate chip cookies, bread and more. If you're in a hurry and don't have time to make one from scratch, try this. I love the smell of baking bread, don't you? It also states on the box that it is produced in a gluten free facility.
My 2 daughters and my husband are beginning to accept the fact that our house is a gluten free one. It's a process and they're very supportive so I don't anticipate much resistance. I love my new Circulon Infinite pots and the more I experiment and cook, the more they realize that eating gluten free food is just as satisfying as eating gluten filled foods.
Off to slice the bread to make a yummy gf sandwich for my daughter's lunch.
Take care,


Split Pea Soup with Herbes De Provence
from Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure by Lorna Sass
serves 4 - 6

1 tablespoon safflower or canola oil
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh garlic
2 cups coarsely chopped onion
1 teaspoon each dried basil, oregano, and rosemary leaves (I had Herbes De Provence in my cupboard, so I used three teaspoons of it)
1 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
1 large bay leaf
2 large carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4 inch slices
2 large celery ribs, diced
6 cups boiling water
2 cups dried green split peas, picked over and rinsed
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
salt to taste

Heat the oil in the cooker. Cook the garlic over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, just until it begins to brown. Immediately add the onions and continue to cook, stirring frequently, for another minute. Stir in the basil, oregano, rosemary, fennel, and bay leaf. Add the carrots, celery, boiling water (stand back to avoid sputtering oil), and split peas.

Lock the lid in place. Over high heat, bring to high pressure. Lower the heat just enough to maintain high pressure and cook for 6 minutes (I cooked it for 15 minutes, as that is what I found works best). For a hearty texture, quick-release the pressure by setting the pot under cold running water. For a smoother texture, allow the pressure to come down naturally. Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to allow any excess steam to escape.

Remove the bay leaf. Stir the soup as you add the parsley and salt to taste. This soup will thicken considerably on standing. Thin as needed with water or stock.