Saturday, December 19, 2009

Gluten-Free Egg Noodles in Chicken Noodle Soup

When the winter comes and the sun retreats towards the horizon at an early hour, I, naturally, want to wrap myself in the thickest down blanket and hibernate until the frigid grasp of the season's hand releases into spring. Unfortunately, this isn't possible. But I can melt that unrelenting midwestern chill with a hot bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup. As a child, my mother would line the countertop with thick strips of homemade egg noodles laid flat to dry. Delicious soup would undoubtedly follow. Thick, hearty noodles and chunks of tender chicken combine with celery, onion, and carrot in a light broth scented with cinnamon. You'll never miss the gluten in these noodles either; though you may miss home a bit.

Gluten-Free Egg Noodles
2 c. flour (3/4 c. potato starch, 1/2 c. tapioca starch, 1/4 c. arrowroot starch, 1/4 c. white rice flour, 1/4 c. sorghum flour)
4 eggs
2 tsp. xanthan gum
1 tsp. salt

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. Beat eggs until frothy. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour eggs into the well. Mix with a wooden spoon until well combined (adding more flour if necessary). Knead dough a little on surface floured with potato starch. Roll out thin, cut into strips, and dry overnight on a drying rack (or on parchment - but you will have to flip them to dry the noodles evenly). Store tightly sealed in the refrigerator.

When you are ready to use the noodles, boil them for 15-20 minutes, depending on the thickness of the noodle.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Gluten-Free Stuffing

On Thanksgiving, there is no replacement for traditional bread stuffing. My first gluten-free thanksgiving was sans-stuffing and I vowed never to make that mistake again. I based this recipe on one that I found from Whole Foods Market, but altered it to make it a little more like mom's. The best part: no one has ever guessed this was gluten-free.

Gluten-Free Bread Stuffing
12 cups (almost 2 loaves) gluten-free bread cubes (I like to make one box of whole foods market sandwich bread mix and one loaf of pamelas bread mix)
1 pkg. ground turkey sausage
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 large yellow onion
2 cups celery, diced
3-4 carrots, peeled and diced
4 tbsp butter
2 tsp. dried sage
2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp orgeano
1 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
2 tsp dried marjoram
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp groud black pepper
4 tbsp parsley
1 large box low-sodium chicken broth (you may need more)
2 large eggs

Cook ground turkey sausage into crumbles. Set aside.

Toast bread cubes in a preheated 300 degree oven for 20 minutes or until dried, stirring frequently to avoid browning. Set aside.

Saute vegetables and garlic in butter until soft, being careful to avoid browning. Add spices and cooked ground turkey sausage crumbles. Whisk eggs and 2 c. chicken stock and pour over bread cubes and mix into sauteed vegetables. Place in baking pans prepared with non-stick cooking spray, cover with foil, and bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 3o-45 minutes.

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

Sometimes you just want a chocolate chip cookie. A simple classic cookie; not too crisp, not too cakey. I've had quite a few disappointing gluten-free chocolate chip cookies, but these might be the best I've ever had.

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 stick unsalted margarine or butter (softened)
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1/4 c. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 large egg
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2g tsp. xanthan gum
1/2 c. oat flour
1/3 c. tapioca starch
1/4 c. potato starch
1/2-3/4 pkg. high-quality chocolate chips (I like guittard dark chocolate chips)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large mixing bow with electric mixer, beat butter until creamy. Mix in brown and granulated sugars, salt, and vanilla until fluffy. Mix in egg, baking soda, and xanthan gum. Add flour. Mix on low until incorporated. Mix in chocolate chips. Drop by tablespoons onto cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Gluten-Free Spiced Apple Crumble Pie

When I visited an orchard in Wisconsin and picked over 20lbs. of fresh, ripe apples, I knew a pie would soon follow. While I enjoy traditional apple pie, I had been thinking of that delicious crumb topping atop a crisp. Thus, I developed my own version of the "dutch" apple pie. Molasses and a generous blend of spices add a rich, genuine taste of fall to this deep-dish pie that will have you reaching for seconds.

Gluten-Free Spiced Apple Crumble Pie
Gluten-Free Pie Crust
1/3 c. brown rice flour
1/3 c. tapioca flour
1/3 c. potato starch
1 tbs. arrowroot starch
2 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. chilled unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1 large egg
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar

Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry cutter. Beat egg with vinegar and mix into the dry ingredients. Gather dough into a ball and roll out between two sheets of waxed paper. Peel back one piece of the waxed paper and place the crust upside down into a 9-inch (deep) pie plate. Trim the edges.

8-9 large apples, cut into slices 1/4 inch thick (I like a combination of tart varieties).
1/3 c. sugar
2 tbsp. potato starch
1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
2 tbsp. brown sugar
2 tbsp. dark molasses
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/8 tsp. cloves
1/4 tsp. ginger
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 tbsp. butter, melted

Combine ingredients in a large bowl and set aside.

1/3 c. oat flour
1/3 c. tapioca starch
1/3 c. almond meal
1/2 c. old fashioned oats
1/3 c. sugar
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. cardamom
6 tbs. butter cut into 1/2 inch cubes

Combine all the dry ingredients into a food processor. Add butter and process until the combination resembles wet sand.

Place sliced apple combination into prepared bottom pie crust. Press crumble topping atop apples, making sure to cover all areas. Place on a foil lined baking tray, and cover top with foil. Place into preheated 400 degree oven. Bake for 40 minutes at 400 degrees, remove foil, then reduce temperature to 350 and bake for another 30 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for at least 1 hr. 

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Gluten-Free Wild Blueberry Pie

"Have I missed blueberry season?" I ask my mother before embarking upon the 9-hour drive from Chicago to Oscoda, Michigan. My mother informs me that she has seen a few berries hanging from the spindly bushes, but doubts there is enough to bake a pie with - as if reading my mind. When I think of Oscoda in late summer, I immediately imagine the wild blueberry bushes filling the forest behind my parent's house. Tiny, dark, and richly flavored, wild blueberries have always rivaled conventional blueberries in my mind. They are crunchy as well, due to the disproportionately sized seeds inside, but instead of being bothersome, it adds a wonderful texture. I was able to find enough blueberries on the bushes, searching for hours, picking delicate berries in a bathrobe and sandals under the shade of the tall pines, making sure to handle the berries with such care. Hours later, my fingers stained purple, my hair windblown, my arms scratched and mosquito-bitten, i emerged from the woods with a basket of berries. 6 cups, to be exact. It's pie time.



6 cups of fresh wild blueberries (can substitute conventional blueberries)

3/4 c. sugar

1/3 c. potato starch

1 tbsp. lemon zest

1/2 fresh lemon


Makes two pie crusts (one top, one bottom)

2/3 c. brown rice flour

2/3 c. tapioca flour

2/3 c. potato starch

2 tbs. arrowroot starch

4 tsp sugar

1 tsp. baking powder

3 tsp. xanthan gum

1 tsp salt

1 c. unsalted butter, chilled

2 large eggs, cold

2 tsp apple cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Combine the sugar, potato starch, and blueberries in a large bowl. Add the lemon zest and stir. Set aside.

Sift together rice and tapioca flour, potato and arrowroot starch, sugar, baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt into a mixing bowl.

Cut cold butter into the dry ingredients. Blend with a pastry cutter until butter is incorporated into the dry ingredients.

The dough should hold together when squeezed. Beat egg with vinegar and mix into dough.

Form dough into a ball with your hands. Add a little tapioca flour if the dough is too sticky. Separate the ball into two balls. Roll out one section of dough between two sheets of waxed paper. The dough should be about 1 1/2 inches larger in diameter than the pie plate.

Peel one sheet of waxed paper away from the dough. Place dough in pan. Remove top sheet of waxed paper. Fill Pie with Blueberry filling and place a few pats of butter on top of the blueberry filling. Squeeze some of the lemon juice from the lemon half directly on top of the pie. Place the top crust, rolled out between two sheets of waxed paper, on the top. Trim the excess dough and crimp the top and bottom crust edges together to ensure a proper seal.

Brush the top pastry with milk and sprinkle with additional sugar. Poke holes in the top crust to decrease the chance of air bubbles in the crust. Cover the edge of the crust with aluminum foil to prevent over-browning.

Bake in the oven for 25 minutes. remove foil. Bake pie for 25 to 30 minutes more or until filling is bubbly and pastry is slightly golden. Cool on a wire rack.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Gluten-Free S'mores

Over Labor Day Holiday, I spent some time in northern Michigan. I had been craving a s'more for quite some time, and there is no better place to eat a gooey-chocolatey-cookie combination than around a campfire beneath the stars (yes, you can see them there). Normally I would also make homemade marshmallows, but due to lack of time (and ingredients) sake, I had to forego that idea and use packaged mallows. I used high-quality dark chocolate (a 70% Uganda bar) which added a slightly more "sophisticated" taste to the traditional s'more. The grahams themselves taste very much like a regular graham cracker. Mine weren't very crispy but the thinner you roll the dough, the more crisp the grahams will be. Regardless of what marshmallows or chocolate you use, I ensure you will have a great tasting s'more.


Originally published in "Living Without" magazine, summer 2007.

2 ¼ cups gluten-free flour mix (3/4c. tapioca starch, 1/2c. sorghum, 1/2c. potato starch, 1/4c.arrowroot starch, 1/4c. sweet rice flour, 1/4c. oat flour)
½ cup packed brown sugar
1 ¾ teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon gluten-free baking powder
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
7 tablespoons butter or margarine, cut into pieces
3 tablespoons cold water
3 tablespoons honey or agave
1 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Mix together gluten-free flour mix, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, xanthan gum, baking soda and salt.
  2. Using your fingertips, work butter into dry ingredients.
  3. Stir in 3 tablespoons cold water, honey and vanilla. If dough is too dry, add a little more cold water, a teaspoon at a time.
  4. Gather dough into a soft ball. Cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
  5. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease a cookie sheet and line with parchment paper.
  6. Cut two zip lock bags (gallon size) down each parallel side so that each opens out into one long sheet. Roll a piece of dough between the two sheets to about 1/8-inch thickness, depending on how thick you like your graham crackers. Cut into 2 x 3-inch pieces and prick lightly all over with a fork. Remove top zip lock sheet. Take remaining sheet with dough on it and turn it over. Lay it flat, rolled dough side down, onto prepared pan.
  7. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. If cookies spread and bake together, re-cut while still warm and loosen them. Let cookies cool slightly before transferring to cooling rack.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Gluten-Free Chocolate Avocado Cupcakes

This past weekend, I was searching for a dessert recipe to take to my cousin for her birthday. The dessert had to travel well, seeing as I would be taking the bus to her house. I also knew I wanted to make something chocolatey, as she is my only other relative that loves chocolate almost as much as I do. I kept thinking of making brownies, but that just didn't seem right for a birthday. I decided I wanted to make cupcakes and for some reason all I could think of was this chocolate-avocado cupcake recipe I gave to my friend Leanne, who received rave reviews from co-workers when she made the cupcakes. I also came up with the idea of a peanut butter frosting because the original cupcakes called for a chocolate glaze and I don't get all that excited about most glazes on cupcakes. Out of my selfishness I also wanted to make the recipe gluten-free so I could try them. The result? The frosting was DELICIOUS. I'm not even much of a frosting person and I could have eaten the whole bowl of frosting. The cupcakes were dense and fudgy, more of a brownie texture than a cupcake, really. The chocolate chips were a great addition as well, adding even more chocolate flavor to the cupcakes.


1 1/2 c. all-purpose gluten-free flour blend (tapioca starch, potato starch, arrowroot starch, sweet rice flour, sorghum flour)

3/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp. baking powder

3/4 tsp. baking soda

3/4 tsp. salt

1 avocado, pitted and peeled

1 c. agave nectar

3/4 c. non-fat milk or soy milk

1/3 c. canola oil

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 c. gluten-free chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 f.

Prepare muffin tin with muffin papers.

Combine the first five ingredients with a whisk in a large bowl.

Set aside.

In a blender or food processor, puree the avocado, agave nectar, milk, oil and vanilla together until smooth.

Mix the puree with the dry ingredients. Add the chocolate chips.

Pour the batter into a muffin tin prepared with muffin papers, bake about 25 minutes until done.

When cooled, frost with peanut butter frosting.


4 oz (1/2 package) cream cheese, softened

1/2 stick unsalted butter (4tbsp), softened

2/3 c. smooth peanut butter (not natural/refrigerated kind)

2 1/2 c. confectioner's sugar (you may need 3 c.)

2-4 tbsp milk

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Beat cream cheese, butter, and peanut butter with an electric mixer until smooth. Add powdered sugar, mix slowly to combine, then beat in milk and vanilla on medium high until smooth. Add more powdered sugar if necessary, to your liking.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Strawberry Rhubarb Coffee Cake (Gluten-Free)

It began with the farmer's market.
My good friend Leanne and I had decided to make brunch this weekend, which again posed the question, "what should I make?". For some reason I have been dreaming of coffee cake and had it in my head that regardless of what we made, I would also make a blueberry coffee cake. We settled on a menu of a goat cheese vegetarian fritatta, gluten-free coffee cake, and rosemary potatoes. On Saturday, I ventured to the Division street farmer's market (despite the extreme heat) in search of fresh veggies and the blueberries to put into my cake. I did find plenty of onion and tomato for the fritatta but failed to find any sort of fruit besides strawberries. This got me thinking. What if I made a coffee cake with strawberries? Better yet, what if I made a strawberry rhubarb coffee cake? After trying various varietals of fresh michigan strawberries, I bought a quart, and also purchased some freshly cut rhubarb. I kept passing the various stalls gleaming with liquid gold which shone in the sun, calling me from a jar shaped like a bear. Honey. I was almost out of honey and figured fresh organic honey would be better than anything I could buy at the store. I tried four different varieties of honey before setting on my favorite - wildflower honey. 

Upon arriving home, I figured I ought to put my leftover buttermilk to work in the coffee cake. This had me searching for a good buttermilk strawberry rhubarb coffee cake recipe - which were a bit more abundant than one might expect. Unfortunately most of them just had chopped up rhubarb thrown into the mix, and I had more of layered cake in mind. Also, none were gluten-free. So as usual, I took pieces from various recipes for amounts and such, and then created my own gluten-free modified recipe (which I ended up changing quite a bit to where it d
id not resemble any recipe that I had looked at, but one could say it is loosely based off of the fruit coffee cake in the better homes and gardens cookbook). The result? Absolute delight. A sweet yet tart filling encompassed by a moist cake and delicate crumb topping. Gorgeous. Delicious.

2 c. chopped fresh rhubarb
2 c. whole fresh strawberries (halved if they are the large storebought-kind)
1/2 c. water
1/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. honey
4 Tbs. cornstarch

3 c. gluten-free flour
(I used: 1c. tapioca starch, 1/2c. potato starch, 1/4c. arrowroot starch, 1/4c. white rice flour, 1/2c.bob's red mill baking blend (sorghum and garfava flour), 1/4c. orgran gluten substitute, 1/4c. almond meal)
2 tsp xanthan gum
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 c. unsalted butter, cut into chunks
2 beaten eggs
1 c. low-fat buttermilk
1.5 tsp vanilla

1/4 c. almond meal
1/4 c. gluten-free flour (I used half tapioca half sorghum)
1/2 c. sugar
4 Tbsp. butter, cut into chunks

preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

For filling, in a medium saucepan, combine rhubarb and water. Bring to boiling. Add strawberries. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, about 5 minutes or until fruit is tender. Combine the 1/4c. sugar, 1/4c. honey, and cornstarch; stir into the fruit. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture is thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir 2 minutes more; set filling aside.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, and baking soda. Using a pastry blender or two knives, cut in the 1/2c. butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and set aside.

In another bowl, combine egg, buttermilk, and vanilla and whisk. Add the egg mixture all at once to the flour mixture. Using a wooden spoon, stir just until moistened (batter will be very sticky and a bit lumpy). Spread half of the batter into an ungreased 9 or 10 inch springform pan (or 9x12 baking pan). Spread filling over batter. Drop remaining batter in small mounds onto filling. 

In a small bowl stir together the 1/2 c. flour and 1/2 c. sugar. Cut in the 2 tbs. butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle over coffee cake. 

If using a springform pan, place a baking sheet beneath the pan, otherwise, place in oven and bake for 40-45 minutes, until slightly golden brown. Cool completely. (Do not remove springform pan side from cake until cake is ENTIRELY cooled. Run a knife along the edge to remove the side of the pan to release the cake). Sprinkle a small amount of powdered sugar on the top of the cake for a picture perfect effect.