{Review & Giveaway} The WHOLE Gang 2013 Desk Calendar!

gf-calendar-20132013 Cookbook Desk Calendar (© The W.H.O.L.E. Gang)

[Giveaway is now closed! The lucky winner has been notified by e-mail. If there is no response within 24 hours a new winner will be chosen..check your e-mails!]

I can’t believe it is already December! Which means the holiday season is in full swing and just around the corner is 2013! How did this year fly by so quickly?!

I know most of you have already started your holiday shopping but I have the perfect stocking stuffer idea for those with celiac disease, gluten intolerance, or those who just love tasty food in your lives. Diane of The WHOLE Gang came up with an amazing idea this year…a desk calendar with gorgeous color photos of each of the 12 recipes (which you will find on the back of each month). All the recipes are gluten and dairy free! You will also find directions on how to prepare the dishes vegetarian, vegan, and paleo! As an added bonus there is a secret access code for a hidden page full of insider tips, tools, resources and 28 additional recipes on her website!

The desk calendar comes in a clear CD case specially made to stand-up on your desk to display the beautiful calendar. I already have mine on my desk! Each calendar costs $14.95 plus S&H and you can order them at: http://www.thewholegang.org/2013-cookbook-desk-calendar/ 

Hidden Page Features:

  • 9 new additional recipes & links to 19 more recipes

  • cooking tips and tricks

  • additional suggestions for the recipes along with instructional photos

  • information on ingredients & tools- resources to find items they might not have

  • instructional cooking videos

About the Author:

  Diane is the founder a2b87bca55e64ec9e102870ff6e41ce0a_biggernd creator of The WHOLE Gang website where she shares easy, healthy,     gluten-free living through recipes, coaching and resources.  She is a Gluten-Free Specialist, Certified Health Coach, Chef and Professional Recipe Developer. She has cooked for over 40 years and lived gluten-free for 5 of those years.

Want to win your own 2013 Cookbook Desk Calendar? Diane has been generous enough to offer one of my readers a chance to win their own desk calendar which can be kept by you or given as a gift! A winner will be chosen at random using random.org. The winner will be notified by e-mail and will have 24 hours to respond. If no response is received a new winner will be chosen. Best of luck to all who enter…you are going to love this!

To enter complete one or all of the entries below. Be sure to leave a separate comment for each one!

  1. Leave a comment below telling me why you want to win this and if you would keep it or gift it? (Mandatory)
  2. Like The WHOLE Gang on Facebook (Optional)
  3. Follow The WHOLE Gang on Twitter (Optional)
  4. Like Creative Cooking Gluten Free on Facebook (Optional)
  5. Follow Creative Cooking Gluten Free on Twitter (Optional)
  6. Share this post on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. and leave a comment for each separate share. (Optional)

Giveaway begins today, Sunday December 2, 2012 and will end at 11:59 EST on Wednesday  December 12, 2012. The giveaway is open to residents of the United States and Canada!

[Full disclosure: I was sent a calendar, free of charge, from Diane Eblin of The WHOLE Gang for this review and giveaway. All opinions expressed here are my own. – Again, thank you Diane it is beautiful and I hope you make another one next year as well!]

2012 Blogging Scholarship Finalist!! – Please Vote!

Hello Everyone,

I have been selected as a finalist in the 2012 Blogging Scholarship! First off I can’t believe there is a scholarship available to those who are currently enrolled in an accredited university that also maintain a blog. Second, that it is worth $10,000.00 dollars…yes you read that right Ten Thousand Dollars! And third that I was selected as a finalist. Thank you to all who nominated me, it is truly appreciated.

As you know going back to school at the age of 29 (now almost 31) wasn’t an easy decision for myself or for our household. I am enrolled full-time and money has been tight. Each year, like many others I struggle to find ways to pay for school. I’m not young enough to be on my parents tax returns which makes filling out the FAFSA forms a little more stressful. I try to apply to as many scholarships that I can, but sadly there aren’t many for people my age. The majority of scholarships out there are for those right out of high school. So when this opportunity came up I jumped in with both feet and I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

Winning this scholarship would be a huge help in letting me finish my senior year of college and one step closer to obtaining my degree in Culinary Nutrition from my dream school, Johnson & Wales University and then applying to Dietetic Internships which will lead to me taking the Registered Dietitian Exam!!

Will you all please take a second to vote for me?  Jenny Manseau (Creative Cooking Gluten Free)

Here are the voting rules:

The direct voting link is here: http://www.collegescholarships.org/blog/2012/11/14/2012-blogging-scholarship/

You are welcome to encourage people to vote for you on your site & through any other channel, though we ask is that the votes are done by humans (not bots). Last year someone tried using a bot & we upgraded the script to prevent that from working + track the votes via a number of parameters to ensure the competition is fair.

Voting is open until November 28th at noon Pacific & anyone can vote once per day (on a side note, not sure if you can vote once per day per device such as computer, phone etc. so give it a shot!).

The full list of finalists is located here:
http://www.collegescholarships.org/blog/2012/11/14/2012-blogging-scholarship-finalists/

The winner is selected based on popular vote

Thank you all again, it is truly appreciated!!

Roasted Tri Tip

Tri Tip (also referred to as Santa Maria steak) is one of my favorite cuts of meat, however many of you are probably wondering what the heck Tri Tip is. If you aren’t from California or out west, you are probably unfamiliar with this specific cut.  Tri Tip is a triangular cut of meat from the primal cut sirloin.It is tender and delicious. When living in California I usually had it grilled (or as they say, barbecued) and it was always fantastic tasting. There is so much you can do with this fairly inexpensive (at least in CA it wasn’t too badly priced) cut of meat.

Below are some images of the primal cuts of the beef and where exactly the Tri Tip is located. So if you have a local butcher, be sure to ask for this cut and give it a try. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.

I haven’t seen it really since moving back east which means I have sadly missed out on this delicious cut of meat for the past two and a half years. However last year I won a gift card to Organic Prairie from Easy Eats and it was about to expire late last month. So I headed to the website and saw they had a 1.5 pound organic Tri Tip available , I got all excited and I placed my order and waited patiently for it to arrive. The Tri Tip was around $30.00 (plus shipping), but I had a gift card so it wasn’t a big deal. When we can afford to buy this again, I will. It is worth the money (in my opinion), and the people over at Organic Prairie were extremely helpful and friendly, especially Lori (Thank you again for all your help).

Bryan had never had Tri Tip but has heard me talk about it quite a bit. So I thought I would make him a delicious meal that would highlight the flavors and tenderness of the beef. I really enjoy organic beef because you can actually taste the flavor of the beef and not what it has been eating. I decided to marinade it over night, but with ingredients what would enhance the meat and not overshadow it by any means. Seeing as hurricane Sandy was heading our way we had already put our grill in a safe place so I decided to roast it, which I have never done nor had before but I figured it was worth a shot. We invited our neighbor over to join us (we didn’t want to be disgusting pigs and eat the 1.5 Tri Tip ourselves!!)

Marinade for Tri Tip

  • 1/2 cup Red Wine – Merlot or Pinot Noir work well
  • 1 tablespoon red wine or sherry vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
  • 1 tablespoon gluten-free soy sauce (San-J)
  • 2 large cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons grey salt
  • 3/4 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 sprig of rosemary – left whole
  • 1 sprig of oregano – left whole
  1. Place all ingredients in a large zip lock bag.
  2. Mix well.
  3. Add Tri Tip and marinade over night.

Roasted Tri Tip

  • 1.5 pounds of Tri Tip
  • Marinade (see above – marinade over night or for at least 4 hours)
  • Roasting Thermometer
  • Roasting pan/dish with rack
  1. Preheat oven to 450•
  2. Remove Tri Tip from marinade and place in a roasting pan/dish with a rack
  3. Insert thermometer probe in the thickest part of the Tri Tip and set it to medium (135•)
  4. Place Tri Tip in oven and cook for 30-40 minutes (check thermometer, you do not want to over cook this)
  5. Remove from oven when the internal temperature reaches 135• and cover loosely with foil for 10 minutes.
  6. Slice against the grain in thin slices. Serve with garlicky green beans, and mashed sweet potatoes – or your choice of vegetables.

Red Wine Reduction Sauce

  • 1 Cup Red Wine – Merlot or Pinot Noir
  • 1 clove of garlic minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced rosemary (fresh)
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced oregano (fresh)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  1. Add all ingredients into a small sauce pot.
  2. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer until it reduces in half, about 10-15 minutes.
  3. Strain reduction through a fine mesh sieve and discard solids.
  4. Serve over sliced Tri Tip

sorry for the pic of the meal – it was taken with my phone…too hungry and it smelt way to good to get the real camera out.

Meet Penny {Cloud Star Review & Giveaway}

This giveaway is now closed. The winner was lucky number 8 – Jenni! Congratulations and thank you to all who entered.

Penny is a 9 year old Jack-a-bee which means she is 1/2 jack russell and 1/2 beagle.

On May 1, 2012 Bryan and I adopted Penny from a local shelter called The Potters League here in Portsmouth, RI. We had lived here for two years and would always say “one day we’ll stop in  to look around”, but never did. Well we finally made it in, with no intentions of coming home with a pet (isn’t that how it always is?), we were looking for a hedgehog (someday we still hope to have one). We looked at their website first and it said that all they had were puppies and all were adopted, so we figured we were safe.  We went in, filled out the paperwork to have them call us if they happen to get a hedgehog in and then asked if we could just look around. The told us about the lay out of the shelter so we headed off to the dog area. Almost all of the stalls had puppies in them, cute as they were they were adopted and we had no intentions of adopting anything, especially a puppy. We made our way to the last little stall and there she was, quite as can be. It was love at first sight.

Let me back up a little bit and give you a little back story…I am not a dog person! Pretty much anyone who knows me well will agree to that statement. However, when I first went to Bryan’s house I learned he had a dog…a bit one, but she was amazing. I fell in love with her and we had the pleasure of having her as our house guest two years ago a few months. In April of this year she had to be put down, which was so heart breaking. I felt so bad for Bryan, and his family. Bryan started looking at dogs online and I said, maybe one day when we have a house we can get a dog. But I had some rules – I wanted small…but not one that would fit in a purse. So I attempted to describe my ideal dog. When we say Penny for the first time, I said she is it…she is the perfect size!! She was everything that I had described to him the night before.

After acknowledging to each other that we both really liked her, we asked to take her on a walk. We had her outside for about a half hour, played with her, took a few pictures, and realized that she had no interested in other dogs, was pretty quite, and very well-behaved. She was my kind of dog. Soooo we asked to put a hold on her, made a few phone calls, and picked her up two days later.

She is a complete cuddle bug, loves to be outside, is terrified of loud noises, and a little skittish at times (we think she may have been abused a bit). Penny is amazing and I can’t imagine not having her around. She gets so excited to see us when we walk in the door, even if we were only gone for five minutes. She is also an incredibly picky eater!! No lie we tried to give her the food from the shelter, but that was a no go, so we found a great food that she loves and it just so happens to be gluten-free. She also is extremely picky about her treats…she will take a milk bone from you and leave it on her pillow for two or three days and then eat it. We weren’t sure if we would ever get her to like treats until Cloud Star came along. She goes crazy, and I mean crazy for these treats. They have a great line of gluten-free treats and when I opened the bag for the first time she was chasing me around to get a treat. I tried to hid the bag from her but she went search for it. She had never done this before so we were completely surprised.

Check out Cloud Star’s website for more information about this great company and the people who run it!

I’m a huge fan of these treats because one she loves them, and two they are gluten-free which means they are safe for me to handle and give to her. The lovely people over at Cloud Star have offered a giveaway to one of my readers. For your chance to win just read below how to enter!

Cloud Star Giveaway:

One winner will win either a Prize Pack for a Dog: Two boxes of the oven baked Grain Free Buddy Biscuits dog treats and two bags of the soft & chewy variety, a Wag More Bark Less magnet or a Prize Pack for a Cat: (1) each of the three cat treat varieties.

1) Leave a comment below saying which prize pack you hope to win (mandatory)

2) Like Cloud Star on Facebook

3) Follow Cloud Star on Twitter

4) Like Creative Cooking Gluten Free on Facebook

5) Follow Creative Cooking Gluten Free on Twitter

6) Share this giveaway on twitter (must include @Creatively_GF), Facebook, or Pinterest – be sure to link back to this page and mention Creative Cooking Gluten Free in the post.

This winner will be chosen by random.org and will have 48 hours to respond by e-mail with their mailing information, if a the chosen winner does not respond in the allotted time, a new winner will be chosen.You must leave a separate comment for each entry. Giveaway is open to all who are residing in the contiguous United States.

Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm on Wednesday October 31st.

Spiced Pumpkin Muffins

Fall is here! My favorite time of year. At school we have a Starbucks on each campus I see everyone enjoying the pumpkin muffins, pumpkin coffees etc. and it drives me crazy that I can just run in and grab one of those delicious looking muffins with the cream cheese on them…you know the ones I’m talking about!

I am always stuck for breakfast ideas during the week because I’m usually up by 4am and out of the house by 5 so making a big breakfast or anything just doesn’t work for me. I needed something new, something besides my lovely quinoa muffins, which are delicious but its time to mix it up a bit.

So here is my attempt at those beautiful looking pumpkin muffins that you are seeing out right now – we should all be able to enjoy the lovely tastes of the fall, gluten-free or not. I gave one of these to a co-worker and she said you can’t tell they are gluten-free so I’m going to say that this was a success! These are super moist and delicious. I think it has just the right amount of spice to it.

Spiced Pumpkin Muffins with Maple Agave Cream Cheese Filling

Muffins:

1 Cup Brown Rice Flour (Bob’s Red Mill)

1/3 Cup Potato Starch (Bob’s Red Mill)

2 Tablespoons plus 2 Teaspoons of Tapioca Starch (Bob’s Red Mill)

1/2 Teaspoon Baking Powder

1 Teaspoon Baking Soda

3/4 Teaspoon Xanthan Gum

1 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon

1/2 Teaspoon Ground Ginger

3/4 Teaspoon Allspice

1/2 Teaspoon fine Sea Salt

2 Large Eggs

3/4 Cup Sugar (Wholesome Sweeteners)

1/2 Cup Canola Oil

1/4 Cup Almond or Soy Milk

1 Cup Pureed Pumpkin (Fresh or Canned – not the pumpkin pie filling if you use can)

Maple Cream Cheese Filling

4 Ounces 1/3 Fat Cream Cheese – room temperature

1/4 Cup Powdered Sugar (Wholesome Sweeteners)

1 Tablespoon Maple Agave Nectar (Wholesome Sweeteners)

Method of Prep:

  • Preheat oven to 350•
  • Line a cupcake pan or muffin pan with liners and set aside
  • In a bowl add brown rice flour, potato starch, tapioca starch, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and salt – mix until well combined.
  • In another bowl add the Sugar and Eggs and mix until smooth.
  • Add the oil, milk, and pumpkin puree – mix until very smooth.
  • Add the dry ingredients into the wet slowly and mix until fully blended.
  • Fill each muffin liner about 3/4 of the way with the pumpkin mixture, set aside.
  • For the filling: In a stand mixer (or small bowl and use an electric hand mixer) add the cream cheese and beat until smooth – about 1 minute.
  • Add in the powdered sugar and beat well.
  • Finish by adding the maple agave nectar and beat on medium speed for 30 seconds.
  • Scoop about 1 tablespoon of the cream cheese mixture into the center of each muffin tin – you can leave it as it is, or press them down a bit, or even add a little bit more pumpkin over the cream cheese. Either way you do it, its delicious!
  • Bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the center with just a few crumbs on it.
  • Cool for 5 minutes in the tin then transfer to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
  • Enjoy!
  • Store in the refrigerator!

Help me expand the Johnson & Wales Culinary Library with Gluten Free & Allergy Friendly Cookbooks!

As you all may know by now, I am a student at Johnson & Wales University in Providence RI. I am currently finishing up my Associates of Arts degree in Culinary Arts, and also starting my Bachelors of Arts degree in Culinary Nutrition with concentrations in Clinical/Dietetics, Culinary Food Science (Product Research and Development), Leadership Studies, and Biological Studies. Johnson & Wales University has been my dream school since high school, and some days it is still hard for me to believe that I am here fulfilling my dream.  Most people look at me funny when I say I have Celiac Disease and I am in Culinary School, but honestly this was a great decision. Not only am I learning but my fellow classmates and my chefs are learning more and more about Celiac Disease, cross contamination, and alternative ways to prepare dishes.The last year and a half-year or so of school has been great, and I have learned so much being here. Not just about culinary, but also about myself. I have realized that I am actually a good student…I currently hold a 3.95/4.0 gpa. Which for me is a HUGE accomplishment. It’s not as thought I was a horrible student in high school but my “guidance” counselor told me I shouldn’t bother applying to college, nice huh? So I just didn’t try much after that.

So here I am 30 years old, starting my bachelors degree at my dream school and trying to find a way to leave my mark. According to some people I missed out on the “whole college experience” but not attending while I was younger, living on campus, and being more involved with organizations, clubs, etc. I think if I did attend when I was younger I would not have achieved what I have to date. Being where I am right now in life, I know what I want, and I know what I need to do to get there. For me at least, this was a smart decision – and I know this doesn’t apply to everyone. The one regret that I do have  and will have when I graduate and move on is the lack of being involved with my campus. The way my school is set up makes it difficult for me to join clubs, and be involved. All meetings are at 8:00 at night and living where we do, it just doesn’t work out…ever.

So I have come up with another way to leave my mark, by helping Johnson & Wales expand their allergy friendly section in the culinary library. Currently there is a VERY limited selection of books, most of which are quite old and a lot has changed in allergy awareness, allergy cookbooks, especially gluten-free cookbooks. The culinary library is awesome! It’s every chef or cooks dream library, so many amazing cookbooks, books, journals, magazines, etc. there for you to drool over. How cool would it be to have a fantastic allergy/gluten section as a resource to the students, chefs, and staff members of Johnson & Wales Providence Campus? I know this may seem small, but in the long run this is huge. It is not only a resource but also another way to bring more awareness of allergies especially in a Culinary School!! How great would it be to leave a “gluten-free mark”?

Will help me expand the culinary library?

Are you a cookbook author that specializes in allergy friendly/free recipes: egg free, dairy free, soy free, gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, nutrition, Celiac Disease etc.

Are you a publisher that distributes books specializing in allergy friendly/free recipes: egg free, dairy free, soy free, gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, nutrition, Celiac Disease, etc.

Do you have multiples of certain cookbooks that fit into these categories? allergy friendly/free recipes: egg free, dairy free, soy free, gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, nutrition, Celiac Disease, etc.

Looking for cookbooks that include: baking and pastry recipes, entrees, sides, appetizers, soups, and are nutritionally sound/based, etc.

Any and all donations are greatly appreciated!! If you are interested in helping me build this library and leave a gluten-free and allergy friendly mark at Johnson & Wales Providence,  please send me an e-mail at CreativeCookingGF@Gmail.Com

I am asking that all donations be sent directly to myself so I can bring them in group to present to the library. If you do have a donation I will provide you with my mailing address in a personal e-mail. A few months ago one blogger and author donated two copies of her book and the library was extremely happy to receive them and to expand their current selections!!

PLEASE feel free to share this with anyone you know that may be interested in helping! Thank you. ~ Jenny

Bready {Review}

This is a very long over due review of the Bready Machine. I always write honest reviews on this blog, if I like a product or love a product I will tell you, I’ll also tell you if I’m not a fan of a product. I know there are a few reviews that I had posted for companies that for some reason I can not find on my blog – not sure if there was a glitch in the system, but that just means I need to go back and type up another review for them.

Have any of you heard of this machine? I had not heard of it until I was contacted by them asking if I would like to do a review. I said yes (I don’t always say yes to doing reviews) thinking that this would be a great opportunity to try a new (or at least new to me) type of bread machine for gluten-free bread. I should have known from the start that this wasn’t going to go over very well. I was contacted by the company, as I mentioned before, and when I responded saying yes, it was several weeks before I had heard back again. When I responded back to that e-mail it was the same issue, no response for weeks, and this response came when a extremely large box arrived on my door step.

I managed to bring the box in side and thought, wow there must be a ton of packaging in here! Nope, it was mostly the machine. A machine that would definitely not fit on my counter by any means. The only place I could manage to fit this machine was either on the floor in my dining room or on my dining room table…which it took up about a 1/4 of!  This was not your standard bread machine. For starters it was rather large (con), you can only use their pre-packaged mixes (con), to start the mix process you scan the package (pro & con, I’ll explain in a bit), the packaged mixes are clipped into the machine and it automatically mixes according to the pre-sets from the scan.

Here is a little information from their website on how the Bready works:

Bready is a revolutionary baking system designed specifically for people with Celiac disease and gluten intolerance. It is the easiest solution for getting fresh, great-tasting, moist, gluten-free breads and cakes in your home, school or office without worrying about contamination issues.

Bready is referred to as a system because it combines a robotic baking appliance and a Mix Bag™ to deliver bakery-quality loaves without intervention or mess, all in a closed environment.

Invented and developed by Swedish engineers, Bready is a true departure from existing bread machines. It uses a radio-frequency scan to program the perfect kneading, resting, rising and baking protocol for each individual bread or cake.

The results are what you’d expect to find at your favorite bakery—long, shapely, ample loaves with perfect texture. Plus, there’s no paddle to remove so there’s no gaping hole in the bottom of your bread.

How To Use Bready

  1. Scan the Bready Mix Bag by showing it to the robot’s control panel.
  2. A beep and ‘OK’ assures you all the baking instructions are programmed.
  3. Attach the bag inside the robot, adding liquids and yeast.
  4. Insert bread pan and shut the door.
  5. Push Start.

The rest is automatic. The dough will knead inside the Mix Bag until it is gently transferred out of the bag and into the bake pan where it rises and bakes. The empty bag winds around a roller for disposal later. A garnish mode allows you to add a topping or score the bread if you choose. The robot will beep when the loaf, cake or dough is ready.

bready

Sounds great right? Well I have to disagree this time. It may just be that I received a faulty machine but over all I’m not a fan of this product for many reasons:

1) To start with the machine didn’t work. I thought I would try one of their bread mixes, so I watched their dvd (instead of an instruction manual) and followed the directions. However, the bag got stuck and almost burst inside the machine. I called customer service and they didn’t know what to tell me. They said they would try to find an answer and get back to me…they didn’t. So here are Bryan and I staring at this machine trying to figure out if the bag is going to explode in our house or not. So we played surgeons. We carefully cut the bag and held a bowl underneath to prevent any dripping, etc. We had to try and unwind the plastic from the rods inside that the bag locks onto…not an easy task I tell you. After that first attempt we thought we would give it another shot. Watched the DVD over again, and followed it step by step. The same thing happened…out comes the scissors and bowl, and away went the machine. Another call to customer service explaining what happened and I asked for a return label. We waited for four months, with several phone calls and e-mails to the company. If Bryan had his way this machine would have been destroyed with baseball bats (Office Space style) and unceremoniously dumped in the trash*, but I did not own this machine so I couldn’t let him do that.

2) The customer service and communication were a mess -see above story.

3) I do not like the fact that you have to use only their mixes.

4) The cost is between $350.00 (includes several mixes) and $360.00 (includes several mixes and a baking pan).

5) Each Bready mix costs around $9.00 – which is a lot of money for a loaf of bread.

Overall I was very disappointed in the customer service communication and the machines quality. If I am going to spend around $350.00 on a machine I would like it to work, and to be able to use which ever mix or from scratch recipe that I choose. There are so many great mixes, and recipes out there for gluten-free breads that people can make at home. There are also other great bread machines out there if you are interested in buying one that come with a gluten-free setting. And if you aren’t interested in making your own bread, there are great companies out there that produce some fantastic gluten-free and allergy friendly breads.

This is one product I would never buy or recommend.

*This is Bryan’s exact language and opinion and does not necessarily represent the opinion of the author of this blog.

New Gluten-Free Magazine Coming This Fall!

There are many gluten-free and allergy friendly bloggers that I adore and admire very much. They have become my mentors and inspiration on my own gluten-free journey. Carol Kicinski, author of Simply Gluten-Free is one of them. Carol is a wonderful lady that has answered my many questions, and given me great tips and much encouragement over the years. She is the author of two great cookbooks: Simply Gluten-Free Desserts and Simply Gluten-Free Quick Meals. 

In addition to her website (which is loaded with amazing recipes), and her two cookbooks, Carol is getting ready to release Simply Gluten-Free Magazine!! The first issue is due out this November (just in time for the holiday season). Carol teamed up with a group of bloggers to produce a high quality print magazine. Don’t forget  to subscribe so you can save up to 70% off the cover price!

Below is the official press release:

Gluten-free Living Expert Carol Kicinski Launches

Simply Gluten Free Magazine

Gluten-free cookbook author and TV chef teams with top bloggers from the Web’s gluten-free community to create informative, high-quality publication celebrating the abundance of choices available to everyone dedicated to living a gluten-free/allergen-free lifestyle

Dunedin, Florida, (August 8, 2012) – Gluten-free living expert Carol Kicinski, author of the books, Simply…Gluten Free Deserts and Simply…Gluten Free Quick Meals, has announced the launch of Simply Gluten Free Magazine, a high-quality, aesthetic, highly informative bi-monthly publication with a mission to provide knowledge, support, and an abundance of creative solutions to those seeking optimum health for themselves and their families by embracing gluten-free and/or allergen free lifestyles. The magazine, which will also be published in digital format at www.simplyglutenfreemag.com, will be loaded with great tasting and easy-to-prepare recipes brought to life with page-after- page of gorgeous food photography. Kicinski says the quality, styling, and content will rival even the most well-established mainstream food and lifestyle magazines on the market.

Simply Gluten Free Magazine is a magazine that I very much wanted to read, but unfortunately it just didn’t exist anywhere; so I decided to create it,” said Kicinski, who in addition to operating one of the top 60 Must Read Health Blogs in America at SimplyGluten-Free.com, is now appearing in her 3rd year of monthly gluten-free cooking segments broadcast on Daytime TV, a nationally syndicated morning show.

Working in tandem with the magazine’s Editor-in-Chief Wendy Gregory Kaho, (a veteran magazine editor, blogger, freelance writer, and a mother of two celiac children), Kicinski has recruited the talents of a team of well-respected and highly popular bloggers from the Web’s allergen-free community to serve as the magazine’s writing staff.

“Each of our contributing writers focuses on their own areas of special interest and research,” says Kicinski. “They are all amazing people who are dealing with creating an allergen-free lifestyle for themselves and their families every day, finding and testing various products and then blogging about their own experiences and reactions. These writers are all very involved in allergen-free issues on the front line, fighting the fight and walking the walk.”

Kicinski says the magazine’s content will be filled with plenty of articles and recipes about gluten-free cooking, suggestions for fun gluten-free crafts and allergy-free

projects using allergy-free materials, as well as articles on what she calls allergen-free “Homekeeping”. She also says that a section of the publication will be devoted to featuring relevant advice from various experts from the fields of health and medicine.

“The magazine will also have a Beauty section where authors will discuss gluten-free and allergen-free beauty products,” says Kicinski. “Also included in each issue is a section called ‘Beyond Gluten Free’, which features diet tips and recipes for those on special allergen-free diets including Sugar-free diets, Paleo diets, Vegetarian and Vegan diets, and Dairy-free diets.”

Kicinski says readers can expect to find plenty of advice on how to keep children of all ages gluten-free (and loving it) in a section called ‘The Gluten Free Family’. A Nutrition section will feature taste-tested recipes and tips for healthier, more nutritious meals.

“Those worried about staying gluten-free while on the road can find plenty of advice in our Traveling section, and our Dining Out section will feature suggestions on how to keep things gluten-free at your favorite restaurant. We’ll also have a section addressing Special Needs Diets, which will provide allergen-free nutritional advice, recipes, and insights for parents caring for special needs children with autism, ADHD, or ADD.”

Kicinski says on the magazine’s New Products page her writers will be reporting on both established brands and the new gluten-free and allergy-free products hitting the marketplace, and they’ll also be analyzing and reviewing the latest books on the topic of allergy-free living in the magazine’s Book Reviews section.

Kicinski says for the November/December premier issue, the magazine’s Holiday Entertainment section will be filled to the brim with informative articles on how to celebrate in style with an assortment of gluten-free food ideas:

  • Mix & Match Holiday Dinners: Creative combinations of gluten-free entrees and side dishes to delight your guests
  • Tips for Lowering the Costs of Gluten-free Diets
  • Holiday Cocktails: How to Get the Party Started and Stay Gluten-free
  • Preparing a Paleo Holiday Dinner
  • Glitch-free Holiday Baking
  • Easy Allergen-free Substitutions
  • Vegan Holiday Desert Recipes
  • Breaking Medical and Scientific News and Information by Leading Doctors

Simply Gluten Free Magazine will be distributed in supermarkets, health food stores, doctors’ offices, and nutritionists’ offices, and is projected to have an initial combined monthly readership of over 250,000 (15,000 print and over 235,000 online).

The magazine, published by Edgewater Park Media, Inc., in Dunedin, Florida, will of course contain Kicinski’s signature touch – her loving, caring, and humorous attitude.

“The magazine is about forwarding the positive side of living an allergen-free lifestyle, constantly celebrating the abundance of solutions, and the joy of living gluten-free,” says Kicinski.

ABOUT CAROL KICINSKI (www.simplyglutenfreemag.com)

Carol Kicinski is the founder of the food blog, “SimplyGluten-Free.com” which was recently voted one of the top 60 Must-Read Health Blogs in America today. She has appeared on The Fine Living Network and is in her third year of monthly segments on Daytime TV, a nationally syndicated morning show. She was a featured speaker at the Gluten Free & Allergen Free EXPO (Chicago, April 2011); the Gluten Free EXPO (Dallas, Oct. 2011) with celebrity appearances at Natural Products East and West (2011, 2012). She authors gluten-free recipes for Cooking Light and for Martha Stewart’s Whole Living. Carol also founded the Gluten Free Global Community – a group of over 350 Gluten Free Bloggers Worldwide. Carol publishes a very popular monthly newsletter – Simply Gluten Free – and is socially active on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/SimplyGlutenFreeMagazine

and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/#!/simplygfmag

For general questions email: info@simplyglutenfreemag.com,

For advertising information email: ads@simplygludenfreemag.com

Rudi’s “What’s Under Wraps?” Giveaway!

This giveaway is now closed…winner was chosen by random.org and has been notified by e-mail! Thank you to all who entered.

Rudi’s Gluten Free comes out with some fantastic products and they recently just released another one…soft gluten-free tortilla wraps in three delicious flavors. You can get these great wraps in either plain, spinach, or fiesta (see below for more information on each wrap). This is something that so many on a gluten-free diet have been waiting for

There are two giveaways on this post, so be sure to keep reading…

The first giveaway on Rudi’s Gluten Free’s Facebook Page where you can win one of the following prizes. This giveaway ends on August 31st so head on over to their facebook page and enter for your chance to win, then scroll down to check out the next giveaway!

PRIZES :

Bella Cucina® 13506 Quesadilla Maker.  ARV $20.
Tiago Light Blue Tortilla Warmer.  ARV $25.
Oxo® V Blade Mandolin.  ARV $40.
Stainless Steel Watering Can.  ARV $50.
Williams-Sonoma® Molcajete.  ARV $50.
Marisol Chip and Dip Set.  ARV $60.
Philips® Fidelio® Docking Speaker.  ARV $130.
Cuisinart® Stainless-Steel Ice Cream Maker.  ARV $145.
Weber® One-Touch Gold 22 ½ Inch Grill.  ARV $150.
All-Clad® Stainless Steel 7-piece Cooking Tool Set.  ARV $165.
Le Creuset® Dutch Oven.  ARV $240.
Breville® Compact Countertop Oven.  ARV $270.
Margaritaville® Fiji Frozen Concoction Maker.  ARV $350.
Wüsthof® Grand Prix 8-piece Knife Block and Knives Set.  ARV $550.
Brevelle Juice Fountain Duo.  ARV $550.

HOW TO ENTER :

  • Click to “Like” Rudi’s.
  • Click “Guess & Enter to Win”.
  • Fill out your information on the entry form, guess what’s under wraps (you do not have to get the answer correct to be entered) and click “Submit”. Each daily winner will be chosen at random and announced on Facebook the following day
  • Click “Log In with Facebook”.
  • Click to get your $2 off coupon for Rudi’s gluten-free tortillas.

ENTRIES ALLOWED :

Limit one entry per day per person.

WHO IS ELIGIBLE :

This Promotion is open t all legal U.S. residents of the 50 states and the District of Columbia who are 18 years of age or older at the time of entry.

DURATION :

The entry period for this Promotion begins on August 13, 2012 at 12:01 AM MDT and ends on August 31, 2012 at 11:59 PM MDT.

The second giveaway is also courtesy of Rudi’s Gluten Free and one lucky reader will win the following prize package:

1 Brunch Themed gift package including:

  • Stonewall Kitchen Raspberry Jam
  • Nutella
  • Wooden tongs
  • Ceramic serving bowl
  • Spreaders set of 2
  • Placemats (4)
  • Glasses/flutes (set of 2)

Plus all packages will include product coupons & Rudi’s swag!

HOW TO ENTER :

  • Leave a comment below telling me what you would make with this prize package

ENTRIES ALLOWED :

Please leave a comment below for each entry above (Max of 4 entries per person)

WHO IS ELIGIBLE :

This Promotion is open t all legal U.S. residents of the 50 states and the District of Columbia who are 18 years of age or older at the time of entry.

DURATION :

The entry period for this Promotion begins on August 15, 2012 and ends on August 25, 2012 at 11:59 PM EST.

I myself would love to have won this package – I love brunch! I would definitely make  some breakfast quesadillas with the nutella and jam – with some fresh fruit. Yummm! – So if by some crazy chance you win and decide you don’t want it, I’ll be happy to take this off your hands. Ha ha. Trust me you’ll enjoy these!

Below is the Rudi’s press release

Rudi’s Gluten-Free Bakery What’s Under Wraps Facebook Campaign Rewards Fans with Fun Kitchen Prizes and Yummy Gluten-Free Tortillas
Rudi’s Gluten-Free Bakery Facebook fans can guess what’s hidden under the three new flavors of Gluten-Free Tortillas for a chance to win prizes and discover new recipes 
 
Boulder, Colo. – (Aug. 13 2012) – Rudi’s Gluten-Free Bakery has a surprise for gluten-free food lovers with its new What’s Under Wraps Facebook campaign. For three weeks starting today, Aug. 13, Rudi’s Gluten-Free Facebook fans can guess what kitchen gizmos are wrapped in the new Rudi’s Gluten-Free Tortillas for a chance to win what’s underneath. Additionally, once fans “like” Rudi’s Gluten-Free on Facebook, they can receive a $2 off coupon to try out the three Gluten-Free Tortilla flavors—Plain, Spinach and Fiesta, and also gain access to new tortilla recipes revealed each day. Rudi’s Gluten-Free was founded on the optimistic idea that you don’t have to give anything up to go gluten-free, so celebrating its new line of Gluten-Free Tortillas makes perfect sense.
Once fans “like” the brand and get access to the $2 off coupon, they can click on the giveaway tab and guess what new prize is wrapped under the scrumptious, new tortillas. Once a fan has submitted a guess, they’re automatically entered to win the daily prizes—no correct guess required. Prizes include a Cuisinart Stainless-Steel Ice Cream Maker, Bella  Quesadilla Maker, Tiago Tortilla Warmer and a Le Creuset Dutch Oven, and of course, new Rudi’s Gluten-Free Tortillas. Each daily winner will be chosen at random and announced on Facebook the following day.
To help inspire some added creativity in the kitchen, the What’s Under Wraps Facebook application also includes a daily recipe reveal featuring recipes made with the different flavors of Gluten-Free Tortillas, including recipes like Dessert Nachos, Mini-Mexican Pizzas and Picnic Tortilla Roll-Ups. All recipes were created by Rudi’s Gluten-Free experts to maximize the taste and texture of the new Gluten-Free Tortillas. 
“We take great care and pride in baking delicious gluten-free products that taste and feel like the real thing, and our new campaign is meant to inspire gluten-free fans with cheerful prizes and delectable tortilla recipes,” said Doug Radi, senior vice president of marketing and sales for Rudi’s Organic Bakery. “We hope our daily giveaway will help brighten the day for all of our fans and inspire some fun in the kitchen.
Rudi’s Gluten-Free products are free of artificial ingredients, preservatives and genetically modified organisms (GMOs), including the new Gluten-Free Tortillas.  The Tortillas are made with whole grain flours and have a soft, pliable texture, ready to be rolled into a delicious burrito or tasty sandwich wrap. To satisfy everyone in the family, the Tortillas are available in three varieties, each made with simple and wholesome ingredients, including whole grains and 5 grams of fiber per serving. The three flavors include:
  • Plain Tortillas (MSRP - $5.99) - Soft and pliable so they’re perfect for building a simple quesadilla or a loaded chicken burrito.
  • Spinach Tortillas (MSRP - $5.99) – These delicious tortillas are made with gluten-free ingredients moms can feel good about. Their soft and pliable texture make them the perfect wrap for a variety of ingredients, from a chicken Caesar wrap to a morning egg and cheese delight.
  • Fiesta Tortillas (MSRP - $5.99) – Spice up your favorite Mexican meal with these tasty tortillas made with red bell pepper, jalapeno, onion and garlic flavors.
Additional Rudi’s Gluten-Free products include Original, Multigrain and Cinnamon Raisin Breads, Pizza Crust, Hamburger Buns and Hot Dog Rolls. All products are available nationally at natural foods stores and select mainstream supermarkets. For more information and to find local availability, visit rudisglutenfree.com.
About Rudi’s Organic Bakery, Inc.
Rudi’s Organic Bakery, Inc., has been passionate about baking better breads for families for more than 30 years. Founded and headquartered in Boulder, Colo., Rudi’s Organic Bakery is the only nationally available brand offering a full line of nutritious and delicious, certified organic breads and baked goods. Rudi’s Organic is committed to baking breads using only the best organic ingredients and no artificial additives, preservatives and GMOs. In 2010, Rudi’s Organic leveraged this heritage to create Rudi’s Gluten-Free Bakery, a line of gluten-free breads and baked goods made with wholesome, all-natural ingredients so that each bite tastes like the real thing. Rudi’s Organic and Rudi’s Gluten-Free products are available nationally at natural foods stores and select mainstream supermarkets. For more information, visit www.rudisbakery.com.

Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream with Toasted Coconut and Almonds

I really wanted to try my hand at making homemade ice cream so I asked my stepmummy if I could borrow her ice cream maker…thankfully she said yes! Keeping Bryan in mind (even though he was gone all summer) I thought I would try making some coconut milk ice cream, I figured I should experiment and do some taste testing before I make some for him…makes sense right? My neighbor Lisa has become my taste taster in Bryans absence. Lisa rather enjoyed the recipe below and would probably have eaten the entire container that night. I told her I will make her another batch soon.

This is a pretty simple and straight forward recipe. You can feel free to change the add-ins to what ever you would like. I just went with what I had on hand…shredded coconut, cocoa powder, and almonds. This is pretty darn delicious I must say and was very excited about how it turned out. Not too shabby for my fist try! I’m pretty sure I did a happy dance in the kitchen.

Can’t wait to experiment some more. I’m thinking the next attempt with be somewhat tropical inspired.

Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream with Toasted Coconut and Almonds

2 cans (14.5 oz each) of Coconut Milk (not light!) – this is usually found in Asian markets or at your grocery store in the international isle

3/4 cup cocoa powder – sifted to remove any lumps

1/2-3/4 cup of sugar – I used a combination of honey and sucanat, both from Wholesome Sweeteners 

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup chopped almonds

3/4 cup toasted unsweetened shredded coconut

This will yield about 1 1/2 quarts of ice cream – if your ice cream maker is smaller just adjust the ingredients to fit your needs.

  • Always freezer the bowl of your ice cream maker in advance.
  • I like to keep my coconut milk in the refrigerator which speeds up the process a bit. If you have room temp coconut milk be sure to chill the mixture for one hour before adding it to your ice cream maker.
  • In a large bowl mix together the cocoa powder, sugar (honey, sugar, agave, which ever you use), salt, and corn starch.
  • Add the coconut milk and vanilla extract – mix well until all lumps/solids are dissolved. As stated above if you are using room temperature coconut milk, be sure to pop this in the fridge for one hour before proceeding.
  • Please read your ice cream makers instructions, as each can be different for churning and freezing your ice cream. Some ice cream makers suggest running it for 20 minutes and others that I have read suggest 30 minutes. I went by sight to achieve the consistency that I was looking for – this was about 25 minutes.
  • When you have about five minutes left in the churning process add in your chopped almonds and toasted coconuts.
  • For a soft serve consistency enjoy right away or place in an air tight container and freeze. If you do not eat it right away and choose to freeze it, be sure to remove the container about 10 minutes or so before serving. Lisa and I tried it both ways and they were both delicious!
  • Top with toasted coconut and some finely chopped almonds! Enjoy

Again, the chopped almonds and toasted coconut are just suggestions, please feel free to change this up!

Outdoor Dining with Kitchen-Play and Land O’Lakes

When I received an e-mail from Kitchen PLAY about taking part in their Land O’Lakes 30 Days of Outdoor Dining, I was very intrigued. I grew up eating Land O’Lakes cheese from the deli counter. This project, however, features a whole new cheese that they have recently released. It’s called 4 Cheese Italian Blend Deli Cheese, which is a combination of Asiago, Romano and Parmesan with creamy American.

I went to pick up a pound of the cheese and couldn’t wait to create a recipe with it.Naturally, I had to eat it straight out of the package first. (I love cheese by the way, so it was very difficult to even wait to get out to the car to do so.)

This cheese is creamy and delicious. I couldn’t decide on just one recipe to make so I tried several. I pretty much used this cheese on everything I possibly could – buffalo chicken pizza, stuffed zucchini, and many other dishes. I loved the flavor and the great creamy texture of this cheese!.

Of all the different ways I tried this cheese, I decided to share a burger recipe with you. To me, nothing says outdoor grilling more than a juicy cheese burger with great toppings. Below is an easy yet delicious burger recipe that is quick to make and easily adjusts to a larger or smaller crowd. Remember to keep it simple because you also want to be able to enjoy your company along with the food!

Grilled Cheeseburger with Avocado and Grilled Onions (serves 4)

1 pound ground beef (you could also buy the pre-packaged burgers)

1 large onion

1 avocado – sliced

1 medium tomato

4 slices of Land O Lakes® 4 Cheese Italian Blend4 pieces of romaine lettuce (washed and dried)

4 gluten-free hamburger buns

salt and pepper to taste

Condiments of your choice

Pre-heat grill.

Divide ground beef into four even portions (1/4 pound each) and form into hamburgers. To help prevent shrinking press down in the center of the burgers. Season both sides with salt and pepper

Slice onion and tomato – set aside.

Place burgers on grill and do not move them around! Just let them hang out for a few minutes until they easily release from the grill. You want to have some delicious grill marks on those beauties. Once they release easily (this timing all depends on the thickness and how you like your burgers cooked) flip them and then top with the 4 Cheese Italian Blend Deli Cheese

Lightly oil the onions and season both sides with salt and pepper – grill until desired done-ness

Cook until desired internal temp has been reached. To learn more about internal cooking temperatures check out this informative post. Toast buns on the grill.

Slice avocado and remove from skins Click here to learn how to slice an avocado. Place one burger on each bottom bun, top with grilled onions, tomato slice(s), avocado, and desired condiments–I personally love ketchup and spicy mustard.)—and top bun.

Serve with your favorite accompaniment – grilled corn on the cob, potato salad, cole slaw etc. Enjoy and have a great dinner!

Don’t forget to check Kitchen PLAY every day for the next delicious recipe featuring new Land O Lakes® 4 Cheese Italian Blend or Land O Lakes® Deli American Cheese. Then, get in on the fun by leaving a comment with your own “30 Days of Outdoor Dining” tip for dining al fresco this summer. If you do, you’ll be entered to win a lovely grilling prize pack, including one grilling spatula, one marinade brush, one set of tongs and one grill scraper. Kitchen PLAY will be giving away four prizes total, one each week! Please visit Kitchen PLAY for sweepstakes guidelines.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Land O Lakes as part of the Kitchen PLAY SideCar series. All opinions given are my own.

Gluten-Free Frito-Lay Recipes

Don’t you just love when a favorite item or brand of yours is actually gluten free, and provides the information on their website! I know I do. I get abnormally excited over something that most would consider small, but to me its all about the small things in life. I’ve always been a fan of Frito-Lay’s products however, I never realized how many of them are gluten-free! Check out their recently updated list here. I think you will be presently surprised. This was brought to my attention by the National Foundation For Celiac Awareness (NFCA) when they asked if I would like to be a recipe tester for some of the new products.

I was assigned the Frito Waffles with Mascarpone and Warm Strawberry Compote. I had the option of changing up the recipe if I so desired to, however I rather liked it just as it was. The waffles were more on the savory side, but topped with the Mascarpone and Strawberry Compote made them a sweet-savory treat. I made these for my neighbor and myself whose respective other halves are away for the summer and she was recently told from her doctor that she needs to avoid gluten and wheat. They not only would be great for dinner but they made a mighty delicious dinner:)

In addition to my recipe and post check out the NFCA’s page for additional recipes and bloggers:  http://www.celiaccentral.org/frito-lay/recipes/

Keep reading to learn how you can win your own Frito-Lay products!!

Frito Waffles with Mascarpone and Warm Strawberry Compote

175 grams (about 1 1/4 cups millet flour)
50 grams (3/4 cup) crushed Fritos® Original corn chips
1 tablespoon golden flaxmeal
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 cup milk
3 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup melted butter
1/4 cup honey
3 large egg whites

Strawberry Compote
1 pound strawberries, hulled and quartered
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mascarpone cheese

Combine flour, corn chips, flaxmeal, baking powder, milk, egg yolks, vanilla, butter and honey
in a blender container. Blend until smooth. Beat egg whites in a medium bowl until they form
soft peaks. Fold flour mixture into beaten egg whites until incorporated, being careful not to
deflate egg whites.

Pour about 1/2 cup of batter onto greased, heated griddle and cook until waffle is done,
according to manufacturer’s instructions. Repeat with remaining batter.

Combine strawberries, sugar, cornstarch and vanilla in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium
heat until juicy and thickened, stirring often.

Serve waffles with mascarpone cheese and warm strawberries.

Yield: about 9 waffles.

Notes:

To make these a little sweeter – maybe add a tablespoon of sugar

This recipe was pretty easy and quick to make. Again this is great for breakfast or dinner. Who doesn’t love breakfast for dinner? I know I do!

I ended up eight large waffles

My waffle maker is old (very old) so they came out a bit darker than I had hoped.

The strawberries and Mascarpone are fantastic on this – don’t add anything to the cheese, just add a dollop on top of the waffles and then top with the strawberry compote.

Head on over here to enter for your chance to win a prize package from Frito-Lay!

 

 

One Vinaigrette – Two Dishes {O Olive Oil}

In my last post about O Olive Oil, I mentioned that I was one of the lucky bloggers who was chosen to participate in the O Olive Oil challenge over at erecipecards.com. Each blogger was asked to do two posts – one a tasting and the second a recipe. Please take a second to read my fist post – A Naked Tasting. I was generously provided a bottle of the O Meyer Lemon Olive Oil and the Pinot Noir Wine Vinegar to taste and create a recipe with.

As I mentioned in my last post these have a higher sugar content and in turn a lower burn temperature which make them great for finishing oils and vinaigrettes. I decided to do just that – make a vinaigrette and then create two dishes to use it with, both of course are gluten-free and can easily be made vegetarian by simply omitting the chicken in one and the fish in the other – you can also add in some delicious tofu!

Meyer Lemon and Pinot Noir Vinaigrette (adjust this to meet your needs)

3 parts O Meyer Lemon Olive Oil

1 part Pinot Noir Wine Vinegar

Small Shallot – minced

Kosher Salt – to taste

Fresh Ground Black Pepper – to taste

Pinch of sugar

I know you are probably wondering where the exact measurements are but I think vinaigrettes are a personal judgement call.  Taste as you go, adjust as needed based on your likes and needs. This oil and vinegar make such a delicious vinaigrette – its sweet and tangy all at once.

Quinoa Salad with Meyer Lemon and Pinot Noir Vinaigrette

1/2 cup quinoa

1/2 cup red quinoa

1/2 cup sliced mushrooms

1 small zucchini diced (1/4 inch)

1 small summer squash diced (1/4 inch)

1 1/2 cups roasted chicken (omit or sub with tofu for vegetarian option)

Salt and Pepper to taste

Meyer Lemon and Pinot Noir  Vinaigrette – to taste

Lemon Zest

Directions

  1. I roasted mine with a lemon pepper compound butter that had a light drizzle of the olive oil in it and placed it under the skin. When done – let the chicken rest and cool – shred and set aside.
  2. Cook quinoa according to package instructions.
  3. In a small non stick pan over ow-medium heat add 1/2 teaspoon olive oil and gently cook the mushrooms, zucchini, and summer squash – just to warm them up a bit.
  4. In a large bowl add the vinaigrette, shredded chicken, and veggie mixture – toss to coat.
  5. When quinoa is finished cooking add directly into the bowl with the chicken, veggies, and vinaigrette – toss to combine and let sit for at least 20 minutes so everything soaks up the awesome vinaigrette.
  6. Toss in the tomatoes and zest lemon over the top before serving.
  7. This makes for a great entree or as a side dish. You can add anything you really wanted to this dish as quinoa to me is like a blank canvas just waiting to be jazzed up a bit. This dish can be served warm or chilled, which makes it great for the summer and a picnic or BBQ!

Grilled Tilapia Pasta with Meyer Lemon and Pinot Noir Vinaigrette

Penne pasta (gluten-free)

Broccoli florets and pieces

1 – per person, Tilapia Fillet

1 slice of lemon per piece of Tilapia

Meyer Lemon Olive Oil

Meyer Lemon and Pinot Noir Vinaigrette – reserve 1-2 table spoons

Salt and Pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Heat grill to medium-high.
  2. Create foil packets – in each packet place lemon slices, and two fillets of fish, season with salt and pepper, drizzle with just a little bit of the Meyer Lemon Olive Oil, and seal the packet.
  3. Grill the packets lemon size side down first for 3-4 minutes, flip and repeat.
  4. Remove fish packets and set aside for one minute.
  5. Open fish packets and flake the fish into chunks. Set aside until pasta is complete.
  6. Cook pasta according to package.
  7. During the last 4 minutes of cooking add in broccoli florets and pieces.
  8. Strain pasta and broccoli, place in a large bowl and toss with vinaigrette – the warm pasta is going to soak up all of this beautiful vinaigrette.
  9. Place pasta on individual plates or bowls – top each plate/bowl with grilled Tilapia fillets and drizzle with reserved vinaigrette.
  10. Another dish perfect for the summer, especially on a week night – quick, easy, delicious, and full of flavor from just a few ingredients!

 

 

 

O Olive Oil {A Naked Tasting}

A naked tasting?? Before all of your minds start going in the wrong direction let me clarify the title of this blog for all of you. There are so many great benefits of being a food blogger – networking with fantastic companies, sampling new products, and being invited to partake in tastings and challenges.

Recently I was selected to participate in erecipecards.com O Olive Oil contest. Each blogger selected to participate received a complimentary box from O Olive Oil that included one of their olive oils and one of their vinegars. The bloggers are then requested to write two posts – a review and the second a recipe. I received the Meyer Lemon Olive Oil and the Pinot Noir Wine Vinegar! O Olive Oils are pressed and NOT infused as some might think. The pressing gives the oil a deeper and richer flavor profile.

O Olive Oil is the original maker of organic citrus-crushed olive oils since 1995 and premium barrel-aged wine vinegars since 1997.

For the review I chose to do a tasting.  I really wanted to taste the oil and vinegar for what they are. I started by simply tasting them naked…with no bread or anything, just took a small spoon and tasted each one just as it was.  I had to refrain myself from continuing to “taste” (aka drink them – they are that good!) like this, so I heated up some gluten-free ciabatta bread (from Schar) and tried each individually then a combination of them.

Let me start with the Meyer Lemon Olive Oil  – Oh. My. Goodness. that pretty much sums it up but I’ll elaborate a little bit for you. This is beyond delicious and I wasn’t joking when I said I would have drank this. I’m a sucker for olive oil, especially really good olive oil. The hint of Meyer lemon in this oil is just perfect. It has a slight sweetness that balances out the slight acidity of the oil its self. To me it tastes just how the lemon smells.

Next up was the Pinot Noir Wine Vinegar. This also deserves an Oh. My. Goodness. Their wine vinegars are barrel aged (just like wine)When I first read about these they sounded great. Pinot Noir is my favorite grape varietal, however I wasn’t sure what to expect.  Sounding great and tasting great are two different things. I was so thrilled that these exceeded my expectations. As I tasted this vinegar, my mind started racing on what I wanted my recipe to be.  My taste-buds were going crazy when I tried this both naked and with the bread.

These oils have a higher sugar content than most olive oils and have a lower burn temperature so keep that in mind when you go to use them. With that said they are not intended to be used for frying and most cooking methods, however they are great as a finishing oil and used in vinaigrettes!

Have you visited erecipecards.com yet? If not head on over there – this website is a great resource for recipes and you can find plenty of gluten-free ones there too! While you checking it out, why not sign up and submit your recipes!

Thank you erecipecards.com and O Olive Oil for letting me participate in this review and contest.

Below are some photos that I took for the tasting…

The “naked” tasting – Pinot Noir Wine Vinegar and Meyer Lemon Olive Oil

Tasting with gluten-free bread

Meyer Lemon Olive Oil tasting with gluten-free bread

Pinot Noir Wine Vinegar tasting with gluten-free bread

Check out my recipes here!!

Disclosure: All reviews on Creative Cooking Gluten Free are 100% honest and completely my own opinions

Fudgesicles {Homemade}

(My monster fudgesicle – gluten and dairy free! Happy Summer)

I’m always up for making things at home (beef jerky, granola bars, ice tea, etc.). I know there is convenience in buying many of these things, but I rather enjoy making things at home. One it’s a challenge for me, two I know exactly what is going into my food. I love making gallons of ice tea at home because I can control the amount of sugar (or honey, or agave) that goes into my tea. It is truly amazing how much can be found in a gallon of store-bought ice tea.

We don’t buy much ice cream at the store and I don’t ever make it only because I do not have an ice cream maker. Oh, how I wish I had one. Instead I make pops. We bought two packages of Monster Popsicle Molds (I found mine at Marshall’s/T.J. Maxx) which can be purchased from Amazon.com. We love these little things, maybe it brings out the inner kid in both of us, but they just make me laugh. I’ve taken regular juice and frozen it in these to make juice pops in the past and this works out rather well. You can even throw in some chunks of frozen fruit that you might have (I’m a fan of pineapple juice pops with chunks of pineapple and mango in them!).

Last night I was searching online for new recipes and came across one for homemade fudcesicles from one of my favorite blogs Baked By Rachel. Rachel’s recipe was an adaptation from Comfy Belly. I read through the simple ingredients and instructions and was a bit sad when I realized I didn’t have any milk in the house. I don’t normally have regular milk in the house because after so many years of thinking I was lactose intolerant (and Bryan really is lactose intolerant) the taste and smell of regular milk just make my stomach turn. I always have either soy, hemp, nut, or rice milk on hand though. I wasn’t sure if this would work out the same but I was pleasantly surprised today when I tried one! Woo Hoo – homemade fudgesicles made with chocolate hazelnut milk and agave nectar were a success!

The chocolate hazelnut milk I used in this recipe is both gluten-free and dairy-free. I also used this in my Samoa Rice Pudding recipe. These little pops are great during these warm days. The recipe below filled seven of the monster popsicle molds with a little extra left over that I just threw in a small ramekin and froze – if you do not have pops you can pour the mixture into ramekins and freeze for at least four hours (comes out like chocolate Italian ice!!! so good). The pops should be frozen for at least 12-12 hours before removing from the molds.

(In the freezer – don’t these molds just make you smile? The purple ones remind me of Leela from Futurama- see image below)

Fudgesicles (Gluten Free and Dairy Free)

Ingredients (serves 7)

1C milk – of your choice. I used chocolate hazelnut milk however you could use regular milk, soy, nut, etc.
1C water
1/2C agave nectar or honey (you could even do half and half)
1/4C cocoa
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla

Instructions

  1. In a small saucepan, over medium heat combine all ingredients. Cook and stir for about 5 minutes just until all ingredients are combined and well blended. Remove from heat, and set aside for at least 15 minutes or until the mixture has reached room temperature.
  2. In the meantime you can prep your molds. If you do not have popsicle molds you can pour the mixture into ramekins and freeze for at least four hours (comes out like chocolate Italian ice!!! so good)
  3. For easier pouring I followed Rachel’s note and I transferred my liquid to a large glass measuring cup and filled my molds that way.
  4. If using molds, put the tops on them (with the stick end) and place in the freezer freeze for at least 4 hours but freezing over night is much better.
  5. If using ramekins freeze for at least 4 hours but again freezing over night is much better.
  6. To release the pops from the molds dip them in a glass filled with warm water for 5-7 seconds to help release them. Pull straight up.
  7. Enjoy!

(Leela – Futurama, one of our favorite shows)