Update: I shared this photo with Kerrygold USA. They were running a #SnackStory contest, and I won a year of butter and cheese! So excited, my family adores their healthy products.
Since I already had one person ask, I used the reduced fat butter because it was part of the food from our Cross Country Invitational that made it into my fridge. Only ingredients are cream and salt, not weird fake add ins
Simple, I’ve been playing with a new technique for creating the structure of gluten-free cakes.
I love cake, always have, but I don’t like the texture of many gluten free cakes.
They come out stiff, gummy, flat or hard.
Not the soft crumb structure and airy lightness of Wheat based cakes.
Yes, I said Bacon Coffecake.
So I’ve had my mad scientist hat on for a while, fooling around with different beating times, different flour combinations, different binding agents and different leaveners.
Wouldn’t you know it is as simple as changing the order of addition of ingredients?
As simple as making sure to beat well after a couple of additions.
LOVE when it is like this to create the structure.
Then I start to play with the flavors of the season.
‘Round my neck of the woods, it’s starting to feel like fall.
We’ve had a week of cloudy and rainy weather, the kind of time when staying inside and working on a jigsaw puzzle seems like a fine way to spend an afternoon with Grandmom. Especially since she adores coffeecake, and it is her first visit in 3 years to see her grandbabies (who are 14 now).
I asked the girls what kind of flavor they wanted as long as it started out from Fresh Pear. I was fortunate to receive a gift this week from Stemilt of their current harvest.
Full of fresh Anjou pears and crisp apples, it was a breath of fall fruit. While you are over there checking out the terrific fruits, go ahead and download the ideas for lunch boxes. We can all use a few more ideas in the months ahead.
Luckily, I had a day or so for the fruit to come to perfect ripeness for decision making. My girls are food focused, and healthy eaters.
When they built on each other’s ideas to come to this combination of Maple Pear Pecan and Bacon for our coffeecake, it was just inspired.
Combined with my new technique, we had a winner.
Such a great fun time making and eating it, we almost finished the cake in one sitting. I’d encourage you to share it with more people.
Then the greens. We adore Kale around my house so that was our choice but the Rainbow Chard would work just as well. I tend to pick up a bag of these greens whenever I just haven’t had the time to harvest from my garden. No excuses to not include greens in a meal, Cut N Clean are even washed.
Finally, I gather the sausage from a local source. Hempler’s is a Ferndale Washington based manufacturer. No nitrates, no nitrites in these tasty treats. My family loves spicy so the Andouille was our pick, feel free to use Italian or Keilbasa if you would like a less spicy version.
When a recipe is inspired by fresh ingredients, in season, how can you go wrong?
This dinner or lunch salad was a gathering from the garden, from the pantry, and from a gift to meld into this.
From the pantry, Bob’s Red Mill Grains of Discovery Sorghum Grain.
Cooks up so quickly and easily. Just rinse the grain, cover with water, bring to a boil and cover. 40 minutes later, tender pearls of whole grain toothsome nutrition.
Back to the pantry for dressing ingredients and a bit more protein. My teen athletes need quite a bit to keep their bodies healthy and growing
This salad has three sources: from the sorghum 1/4 cup has 5 grams
From the chickpeas and from the pink salmon.
Feel free to leave out the salmon if you want to make this vegan or vegetarian.
The dressing is one I use frequently
1 part vinegar 1 part oil and 1 tablespoon of honey.
Quick, slightly sweet and tart all at the same time. Feel free to use a bit more oil if you like it less tart.
For seasonings, I went to the garden and gathered a handful of mint leaves. These are chocolate mint, but any mint would do.
The spicy sweet cooling is a nice counterpoint to the softness of the chickpeas.
Finally, lots of fresh cherries, a quick stir and dinner is served.
Although I grew up in the heat and humidity of summers in New Jersey, my extended stay in the Pacific Northwest has turned me into a wimp.
When the thermometer rises above 75 in Bellingham, I wilt.
Cooking becomes a real chore, not joyful, just tedious. Well, except when I make a great Cold Cashew Nut Sauce Noodle Salad Gluten-Free of course.
Having to teach a class to teens in the midst of the heat wave?
That is always fun.
I love to teach. Love kids understanding the whys and hows of turning great fresh, organic foods into a meal truly excites my locavore heart.
But having to cook again when I get home, not so much.
Maybe it’s because the Coop has air conditioning, and my home kitchen doesn’t?
To get inspired, toys help.
My newest is a beautiful Oxo Mandoline that I was fortunate to win at CampBlogAway in May, just like this one.
Excited didn’t begin to describe how I felt when I was chosen. I’ve wanted a mandoline for years. No other tool makes slicing incredibly thin slices, julienne and waffle cuts as easy as a mandoline.
Even with years of knife skills and training under my belt, no way would I be able to do that thin consistently.
This Cashew Nut Sauce Noodle salad gluten-free gave me free rein to play with my new toy. Gathering all the fresh, local produce from my fridge, then turning it into slender threads of crunch. Lucky for me this Cashew Nut Sauce Noodle Salad would make life easy for dinner.
Bonus, I used up the leftover sauce we had made for the class. I love when leftovers get used up.
Shredding the carrots and zucchini into tiny julienne, slicing the onions paper thin.
All together a very satisfying half hour or so playing in the kitchen.
The Cashew Nut Sauce for this Noodle Salad might seem a bit daunting from the list of ingredients, but it gets thrown into a food processor and turned on to run till it is velvety. Easy, peasy.
And best of all, if you double the amounts you have lunch and dinner for another day for a family of 4.
This sauce is terrific for so many things, I made it for Vietnamese Salad rolls for my teen cooking class. My daughter thinks it is the best dip ever for broccoli. You can warm it as well for a dressing over hot vegetables too. Lots of protein for any vegetarian folks too. Packs for lunches easily and is even better once it sits for a couple of hours, perfect summer food.
Author: Dr. Jean Layton
Recipe type: Salad, entree, cold dish
1 package of Asian rice noodles cooked according to package directions.
Drain in colander and rinse well to cool.
These can be anything fresh and wonderful. I used
1 zucchini- julienned
2 large carrots- julienned
1 Walla Walla onion- sliced as thin as possible
1 stalk of Broccoli - stems julienned and florets cut small
a handful of sugar snap peas cut into small pieces
a package of organic tiny peppers in orange, red, yellow and chocolate brown cut into tiny shreds.
Feel free to combine any vegetables you love raw.
1 cup cashew nuts- roasted or raw (the roasted are deeper and richer in flavor)
½ cup tahini paste or ¾ cup of sesame seeds
2 tablespoons chopped garlic – approx 3 cloves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger- a quarter sized chunk
2 Tablespoons palm or coconut sugar- if you can't find either brown sugar will do.
1 tablespoon red miso paste
1 Tablespoon hot sauce or ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
This month’s Recipe Redux started out with an interesting request.
Which kitchen gadget is indispensable in our kitchen?
There are so many that I use on a daily basis, but the one that gets the most use is a very simple scale.
Ever since I made the change from volume measurements to weight based measurements, my baked goods are routinely wonderful. There just isn’t the variations in quantity of flours, sugars or liquids that eyeballing in a cup can create.
500 grams (or to taste) mix-ins of your choice- nuts, chocolate chips, candy cane pieces, etc.
Place the mixing bowl onto the scale and zero out the scale. Measure each of the ingredients into the mixer bowl in the order written, zeroing out the scale between each addition.
Once all the ingredients are added to the bowl, place the bowl onto the mixer.
Begin to beat slowly till the mixture comes together.
Once it is all gathered together, increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes.
The dough is then ready to be used as a cookie base or with mix-ins of your choice or rolled into a log 2 inches in diameter for slicing later.
Place finished dough into the fridge to rest for a minimum of 4 hours.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
If you held the dough in a ball, roll the dough out to ½ inch. Using cookie cutters, cut out festive shapes. Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet about ½ inch apart.
Bake for 8 minutes
If you mixed in items, then make one inch balls. Place them on parchment or silpat lined cookie sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes or till golden brown. The center will still be soft but will crisp up as they cool.
If you held the dough in a log, just slice the log ½ inch thick and bake on parchment or silpat lined cookie sheets for 8 minutes. If you roll the log in colored sugar, minced nuts or ground chocolate first, then the edges are all decorated when they come out of the oven.