Monday, March 8, 2010

Gnocchi Time!

Last night we had a guest cook, good company. Our friend Darien came over to experiment with some gluten free gnocchi. We used yet another Flying Apron recipe, that alas we had to alter. I thought that I had buckwheat flour a plenty, but the majority of my stock was infested with little moths of some sort. They were deceased, and now they found a semi final resting place in our compost pile. Darien picked up a buckwheat flour mix at Kroger, but it had soy in it, and Brian cannot do soy. So.... we did a combo of buckwheat flour and some Bob's Redmill gluten free baking mix. Here we go..... I'll call this...

Farewell Friend Gnocchi

5 small to medium sized russet potatoes
2 Tbs olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/8 tsp nutmeg, freshly ground
3/4 c. buckwheat flour
1/2 c. Bob's Redmill gluten free baking mix (or just use all buckwheat flour)
1/4 c water

Peel and steam potatoes till soft. Mash in bowl, add olive oil, salt and nutmeg... keep mashing.
Slowly add the flour, once it's incorporated add the water, and kneed dough till fully combined. You can add more water to achieve a nice consistency. Liberally flour your work surface using brown rice flour. Divide the dough into 6 portions, roll each portion into a 1/2 inch thick rope. Slice each rope into 1 inch segments and press the top of each segment with a fork. Transfer pieces to a floured plate.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees, place an oiled baking sheet in the oven. Place one layer of gnocchi in a steamer and steam about 10 minutes, remove from steamer and place on oiled baking sheet in the warm oven. Repeat this step until all the gnocchi are in the oven. Leave in oven for 6-8 minutes, remove and cover with your sauce of choice, we made a pesto of sorts that was amazing! I'll call it...

If The Garden Could Sing Pistou

3/4 c fresh basil
1/2 c. fresh Italian parsley
2 Tbs fresh thyme
1 Tbs fresh Rosemary
1 Tbs fresh oregano
1 large clove of garlic peeled
1/2 c olive oil
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
sea salt and pepper to taste

Add all ingredients to a blender, puree, add more olive oil if needed. This is a mouth watering sauce, I highly recommend trying it, even with regular pasta and veggies it would be grand.

For dessert we made a Mexican chocolate cake with chocolate ganache icing, it was yummy, but thats a story for a different day. Well good times, good friends and another successful meal!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

One Day We Will Have Goats And Chickens

It's hard to believe it's still snowing, I'll tell you one thing I am going to take spring very seriously, hiking, adventuring, dancing in Pittsburgh. All this sitting around is nice but I can't wait to play in the woods, I guess if we had a more snow worthy vehicle we'd be out there in all weather, but alas Pam can't hang with ice and such, vespa isn't even an option, and I don't really feel comfortable taking the Karmaan Ghia out either. So it's feet.
Well, we have been cooking like crazy... making all sorts of gluten free breads, cookies, and delicious meals! The recipe I share today was given to me by Gale, the mother of my co-worker Darien. It's for the most amazing granola I've ever had, I'm not exaggerating, it is so good, and so easy, if you can make a cup of tea, chances are you can make this.

My man doesn't like nuts, too bad Granola

4 cup oats (I used gluten free oats)
1/2 cup chopped almonds
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup dried coconut
Mix above ingredients in a large bowl.

1/2 cup safflower oil
1/2 cup honey

Heat Oil and honey until warm
add tsp vanilla extract

Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees. Mix dry and wet ingredients together. Spread onto cookie sheet. Bake 10 minutes, remove from oven and stir it up. Bake another 10 minutes. Remove from oven and return to large bowl. Let it cool, stirring occasionally. Once it is cool you can add your choice of dried fruits, about 1 to 1 and 1/2 cups in all. I added chopped dates, currants and montmorency cherries, a fabulous combination! I am storing mine in a big zip lock bag, though I wish I had a big yellow container like the one Grandma Ann has always stored her homemade granola in.

While I'm at it I'll share yet another recipe worth trying, this is a Flying Apron recipe, slightly altered.

Who Wouldn't Like A Scone For Dessert Scones

2 3/4 cups brown rice flour
1 1/2 cups plus 1 Tbs garbanzo bean flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup safflower oil
1 cup sucanat sugar
1 cup rice milk
3/4 cup frozen blueberries

Combine brown rice flour, garbanzo flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a large bowl. Stir. In another large bowl use your hand beater to blend the sucanat and the oil. Slowly add the flour mixture to the oil mixture, alternating with adding the rice milk. Once well mixed, refrigerate the dough for at least 3 hours, I did 6.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. On a floured (rice flour) surface kneed the blueberries into the dough. Once the blueberries are evenly distributed, shape the dough into a 2 inch think disk. Cut the disk into 8 peices. Place evenly on a greased baking sheet. Bake for about 30 minutes until the tops are slightly browned and a bit firm to the touch. It took my oven about 35 minutes. These scones are soooo good, we ate them for dessert and Brian had another for breakfast. They were actually super easy too, just mix the dough at night, then pop them in the oven in the morning for hot fresh scones!