Saturday, December 28, 2013

Really good smashed red potatoes

We ate these two nights ago at my father-in-law's house.
They were so good, we made them again tonight.

Smashed Red Potatoes:

Place 6 red potatoes, skins on, in a pot of water and bring to a boil. Boil until they are fork-tender.
Drain the water, and place the potatoes on a cookie sheet. Smash them with a potato masher (or a fork).
Drizzle with olive oil and several cloves of minced garlic. Salt and pepper to taste. You may need more than you think.
Broil until the tops begin to brown. They'll get a delicious salty garlicy crust on them.

Fantastic. A new staple at our house.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Deviled Eggs

It wasn't until we were halfway to my sister's house on Thanksgiving day that my husband revealed that he was expecting deviled eggs.

Most of us have similar Thanksgiving menu items, with the exception here and there. Apparently deviled eggs is something that he thought everyone made, while the dish has never been a staple at our feasts.

Thankfully, deviled eggs can be made quickly, with ingredients that are likely already on hand. At least, that was the case at my sister's house.

For 1 dozen deviled eggs:

Boil 6 eggs: Place eggs in pan, cover with cold water, and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and let the eggs sit for 10 minutes. Rinse with cool water.

Peel the eggs and cut in half, putting the yolks in a separate bowl.

To yolks, add: 1/4 c. mayo, 2 T. relish, sprinkles of salt & pepper. Mix all together, mashing the yolks. I like to put everything all into a plastic ziplock bag and squish it all together.

Spoon the mixture into the egg whites, or cut a hole in the corner of the bag and pipe it in.

Top with half an olive and a sprinkle of paprika.

Store in fridge and serve chilled.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Pillsbury GF Cookie Dough

I'm going to keep this quick & sweet; much like this cookie dough (harr harr).

Pillsbury makes a gluten free chocolate chip cookie dough that's already made & ready to plop on a cookie sheet & throw in the oven.

It's really freaking good. So easy. Turns out delicious-- especially when you're my sister and you roll the dough in pecan pieces first.

This would be great especially during the holidays. Although, I like to prepare big batches of dough and store in the freezer already rolled into balls, sometimes real life just isn't that prepared. Great for a quick pinch when you don't have the time or energy to make cookie dough from scratch.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Review: Kathleen's beans

Both my sister and coworker have mentioned that these gluten free Kathleen's beans are worth trying. Being a fan of beans myself, I gave them a try.

Easy to make, and about $1 each, they meet criteria for those days when I don't have leftovers for lunch. I stir in a little cooked brown rice to boost the hunger-busting power.

They've got good flavor and ingredients I can identify. Of course, if you're going to make the curried beans, be prepared for your microwave to smell like curry for months.

The only drawback to these yummy bowls is that even though I've cooked according to package directions, sometimes the beans don't get cooked all the way and the little dried bean chunks are chewier than they should be. Still edible, but distracting. I suggest adding a little more water than called for.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Quick & Easy- Spaghetti

I can't believe I've been blogging gluten free for 6 years and I haven't posted once about spaghetti.

It's the go-to meal when I don't know what to make. It feeds a crowd. It sticks to your ribs. It's cheap. It's quick. It's easy to keep the ingredients on hand.

The key to making the sauce extra-delicious is fresh basil. I've used various store-bought spaghetti sauces and basil always punches up the flavor and makes it taste better.

Seriously, if you don't have a basil plant right now, go buy a pot and some dirt and some basil seeds. It's super easy to grow. Just water it when it starts to droop. This simple addition really makes a difference.

So back to dinner.

  • Ground beef, sausage, chicken-- whatever you've got. Cook it in a pan. Drain the grease if there's a lot of it.
  • Stir in spaghetti sauce-- jar, can, whatever was on sale.
  • Fresh basil-- chop it up and add it to the sauce.
  • Noodles- cook your favorite gluten free noodles according to package directions-- my favorites are corn-based. They seem to hold up better as leftovers.
You're done and it's dinner time.

I generally serve with some kind of vegetable and, if I've got any, butter & garlic powder spread on a piece of gluten free bread. Noms.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Real Pumpkin Spice Coffee

The other day I was at work when I decided I needed a little treat. So I headed down to Starbucks and ordered a Pumpkin Spice Latte. I was so excited to head back to my desk and enjoy my fancy coffee.

Except, it was not delicious.
It was chemically-tasting and way too sweet, with a horrible lingering aftertaste. I hardly drank it.

I don't remember the Pumpkin Spice Lattes being so gross. Of course, when I stopped to think about it, all it is is a few squirts of flavored syrup added to a latte. Doesn't exactly scream gourmet, right?

I set out to satisfy my craving. I started with the simplest idea of a classic pumpkin flavor that works- pumpkin pie.

So I made a pumpkin pie filling, without the eggs, and spooned it into small ramekins. Topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon, they were frozen for future deliciousness.

Pumpkin Spice Coffee

1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk (NOT sweetened condensed!)
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. ginger
1/4 t. cloves

Mix all ingredients together and spoon into ramekins (or, even better, ice cube trays). Add a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkling of cinnamon. Freeze.

To enjoy a cup of Pumpkin Spice coffee, just thaw a chunk in a coffee cup and stir in fresh brewed coffee. Not a latte, but much, much tastier.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

dinner, but really potatoes

So last night I came home, went for a run (that lasted 15 minutes before I seriously thought I would die), and made dinner.

Standard fish- pepper, paprika, parsley, and lemon juice.
Standard peas- butter & salt.

The real star of the meal was the potatoes. My mom made them and sent me home with a sample.
So simple, and so delicious.

She boiled regular potatoes, plus 1 sweet potato, then mashed them up like regular mashed potatoes.
She then took raw spinach and carrots and gave them a whirl in the food processor, and mixed them into the potatoes with some butter & salt.

That's it. The orange color actually tricks you into thinking they're cheesy, and the hidden extra veggies aren't even noticeable.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

I made Hawaiian pork in the crock pot, and had a few pineapple rings left over.
[This was made with pineapple rings canned in juice]

You know what that means...

Pineapple Upside Down Cake! Yay!

I used this recipe for my cake, with a few adjustments:

1 cup gluten free flour (1/3 c. each brown rice flour, sorghum flour, potato starch, 1/8 t. xanthan gum)
1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar, + 2 T. extra
1/2 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter, softened + 1/2 T. extra
1/4 cup milk 1/4 cup pineapple juice (use what was in the can)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
5 pineapple rings
5 maraschino cherries (Oops! Didn't have any. I survived!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Melt 1/2 T. butter right an 8-inch cake pan while the oven's preheating. Take it out and tilt the pan to make sure the butter is covering the bottom. Sprinkle 2 T. brown sugar evenly over the pan. Lay the pineapple rings in the bottom and place a cherry in the middle.

In a mixing bowl sift together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add butter, milk, pineapple juice, and vanilla. Beat with a hand mixer on medium speed for 3-4 minutes, occasionally scraping sides of bowl. Add eggs, beat for 3 more minutes. *Honestly I don't think I reached the 3-4 minute mark on either of these steps. I just eyeballed it until it all looked well-mixed.

Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

Cool in the pan only for a couple minutes. Turn out onto a big plate, and leave the pan on top for a minute to let the juices run back into the cake. Do not forget to turn it out- you'll lose the valuable brown sugar crusty deliciousness that gets stuck to the pan.

 P.S. You can put booze in this! Oh, I'm so doing that for Christmas...

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Tomato basil fish

Here's what you get when you have a healthy basil plant and a sad tomato with skin starting to wrinkle.

Tomato basil fish. The addition of red bell pepper and garlic really make the flavors in this dish pop.

I don't know what kind of fish this is. I bought it frozen in individual packs and I didn't keep the outer bag that tells you what it is. It's pretty cheap as far as fish goes, and it's white with a mild flavor.

So back to dinner. 

Heat your pan. I put my stovetop dial on "3" and use my nonstick ceramic pan. I love that thing. My brother bought it as a gift and I cherish it. Make sure the fish is thawed if you are using frozen, like me.

1 tomato, chopped
1/4 c. fresh basil leaves, chopped (or a small handful)
2 T. chopped red bell pepper*
1 T. chopped onion*
1/4 t. garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all together, or put chunks in a food processor and pulse a few times.

Throw your fish on the pan. You'll need some kind of lubrication if it's not non-stick- olive oil will do.
Place your tomato basil mixture in the pan just to warm up and let it all cook and get happy until the edges of the fish turn white & are no longer translucent. Turn them over and let the fish cook until the thickest part is white & flakes with a fork. The juices from the toppings will provide moisture so they don't get all dry, and will also provide flavor.

Serve hot with the tomato basil mixture on top. I like broccoli lately, so that's what was on my plate. I beefed it up with some brown rice when I took the leftovers for lunch, since lunch needs more staying power than dinner.

* I am able to use small amounts of bell pepper and onion because I rarely use an entire pepper or onion all at once. I keep the rest already chopped in the freezer and just take out what I need.

Serves 2, or 1 with lunch leftovers.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Bite size tuna melts

1. Make yourself some tuna salad: Can of tuna, drained. Finely chopped celery. Spoonful of relish. Spoonful of mayo. Dash of salt. Mix it up real good. Give your cat a little tuna juice because, OMG you opened a can of TUNA

2. Grab some gluten free crackers. (These are Mary's)

3. Place a slice of sharp cheddar on the cracker.

4. Place a spoonful of tuna on top. Pack it real tight in a measuring spoon so it doesn't fall all over the place.

5. Broil for a few minutes until the cheese gets melty and the tuna warms up and the edges of the crackers get toasty.

6. Place a piece of tomato on top.

That's it.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Greek Yogurt Muesli

Most days, my second breakfast consists of this, bottom to top:

Gluten Free Oats
Greek Yogurt
Fresh or frozen fruit

When made on Sundays, the liquids soak into the oats and soften them up by the time I eat it on workdays, making a significantly more substantial snack than just your plain old fruit & yogurt.
Apparently, this parfait-type of dish can be considered a type of Muesli.

Sometimes I make a larger portion and just eat this. Sometimes I make a smaller portion and pair it with a muffin, or in this week's case, cheesy scrambled eggs.

Either way, it's delicious, healthy, and cheap- those individual packs of fruit & greek yogurt can add up.

Friday, June 14, 2013


Wednesday night: Beef Stroganoff. Enough for 2, plus 1 lunch.

This is the first time I've ever cooked with mushrooms.
I used this recipe here, with a few changes:

1/2 pound of ground beef
8-10 mushrooms, washed, dried & sliced
1 t. minced garlic
1 T. butter
1 c. broth
sprinkle of salt
1t. Worcestershire sauce (Lea & Perrins is GF)
2 T. sweet rice flour
1/2 c. greek yogurt

Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add butter, and cook mushrooms & garlic for a few minutes; until the mushrooms are somewhere between completely raw and mushy. Place them in a bowl.

Cook the beef in the skillet until it's browned. Stir in 3/4 c. of the broth, salt, and worchestershire. Heat to boil, then let it simmer for 10 minutes.

Stir the remaining 1/4 c. broth into the flour, and stir into the skillet. Add mushrooms. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. The sauce will start to thicken. Turn the heat off, and stir in the sour cream.

Serve over your favorite GF noodle.

P.S. I added in chopped spinach, because I have sooo much in the fridge.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

fish with garlic wine sauce

For the record, I've been cooking. Nearly every day. I just don't put it in the internet. I've come up with some really great stuff, too!

This is an effort to post more, mostly because I'm frequently thinking, "Man I had a really good meal the other day but I can't remember exactly how I made it."

Tonight I made fish.

For 2 pieces of frozen fish, thawed:
Mix 2/3 c. sweet white wine, 2 t. minced garlic, 1 T. butter, sprinkle of salt & pepper, dash of paprika. Heat in the microwave 30 seconds to melt the butter.

Heat a skillet over medium heat, and add the fish. Pour the sauce over it and let it cook until the fish begins to turn white & flaky on the edges. Flip and cook until you can insert a fork into the thickest part and the fish flakes and looks like cooked fish.

Take the fish out of the pan and put it on a bed of spinach.

Sprinkle a small amount of sweet rice flour (maybe 1/2 T) on the sauce left in the pan and stir until it's thickened. Pour it over the fish. Sprinkle with walnut pieces.

The sauce is great. Garlic mixed with sweet wine and a little bit of butter to smooth it all out. The spinach and nuts were just because I have to use them up, but the combination came together really well.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Clever Leftovers: Spaghetti Sauce

There are leftover people, and there are not. I am leftover people, but even I get tired of the same thing night after night, especially if I make a big batch of something.

Enter Clever Leftovers: the Spaghetti Sauce edition.

Leftover spaghetti sauce can be easily made into a tomato-based soup. Or baked ziti. The soup version gives you an alternative to just another pasta dish.

Place your leftover spaghetti sauce into a pot.
Take 1/2 of the amount of the leftover spaghetti sauce and add in broth. (make SURE it's GF)

Add in:
frozen mixed vegetables
chopped mushroom
canned beans
fresh thyme or rosemary
even if you leftover spaghetti, cut up with kitchen shears

Pretty much whatever floats your boat. These are leftovers; use up what you can. You can even accomplish this in a microwave- you're just creatively reheating.

Serve with GF crackers & hummus, or a nice spinach salad, and you've got yourself a nice lunch that doesn't even remind you of it's previous spaghetti sauce life.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Good To Go Katy Gluten Free

I have been waiting for a gluten free restaurant in Houston. Not just a bakery, or a gluten free menu, but a restaurant. 100% gluten free.

Today, Missy suggested we eat at Good To Go, mentioning that it was gluten free, and I figured they had a gluten free menu. After looking at the menu I was psyched! The entire menu is gluten free! I called to ask how late we could order, and chatted with the lady for a bit. She said the entire kitchen is dedicated gluten free. Woo!

Previously, I had to wait until my travels took me to San Antonio to get great gluten free grub at Little Aussie (and about 10 loaves of bread).

Now, I can get my gluten free jollies any time I want, worry-free!

So, what did I order? A chicken pot pie. It was DELICIOUS. My only critique is that I wish it had more delicious crust.

I also got a loaf of bread, which is hearty. This is no loaf of white bread, my friends. Spongy, not hard, with a wholesome taste. Yum. It did not knock my current favorite off the shelf, but it's still very good.

Oh, I also got two cupcakes from the display case. Honestly, they were nothing special. Did it bum me out? Not at all. I was super full from the delicious food.

I'm super happy that this place exists, and that it caught Missy's eye. I will be going there again.

P.S. It's currently pick up or delivery only, but the lady on the phone mentioned that they're getting tables soon.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Yogurt Cake/ Waffles

This is a yogurt cake made on a waffle iron.
They are fantastic. Even though they look kinda meh. (That's not almost-burned. That's golden brown...)

There was a tub of yogurt on its' last days in the back of the fridge. I dunno about you, but about halfway through a tub, I get tired of yogurt. And it just sits there.

Fortunately, I found this recipe that uses a cup and a half of yogurt. Original recipe found here at Converted to be GF here:

Yogurt Cake

1 1/2 cups strawberry yogurt
1 T. strawberry preserves
2/3 cup olive oil
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cups gluten free flour- 3/4 c each brown rice flour, sorghum flour, potato starch
1/8 t. xanthan gum
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Pinch freshly ground nutmeg

Pour ~1/2 c. of batter into a preheated waffle iron and cook for a few minutes- I check to see if they're done when the steaming has calmed down. Don't overfill because they rise and spill out of the sides and it's a pain in the butt.

They turn out soft but the outside sorta caramelizes and it's delightful. Subtle strawberry taste. Awesome with tea.

Makes 12 waffles.