No “Beet”ing Around the Bush

Again with the beets?!

I know, I know…. But they were on sale, 2 for 1! You wouldn’t expect me to pass up a good bargain, would you? Besides, we should all eat more beets. They are excellent for the liver, boost mental health, and are even considered by some to be an aphrodisiac. (Oh yeah… I went there.) source

I made a big batch of these steamed beets to use on salads and other meals throughout the week. I will give you the recipe for what I ate my beets on tomorrow. It was delicious, filling, and vegan! I win. 😉

Steamed Beets

(Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan)

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Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch organic Beets (reserve the beets tops for another recipe)
  • 2 Tblsp Low Sodium Vegetable Broth
  • 1 tsp dried Thyme
  • Salt & Black Pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Line a square baking pan with foil.
  3. Clean & quarter beets.
  4. Place beets in the foil lined pan, and pour vegetable stock around the beets.
  5. Sprinkle with thyme, salt, & pepper.
  6. Cover pan tightly with foil, and place in preheated oven.
  7. Cook for 45 minutes to an hour, until beets are fork tender.

“Sneaky Veggie” St. Patrick’s Day Cornbread

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!! ….a few days late…

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I am fresh off of a crazy month and a half during which I was home for about 4 days total. I have been to Orlando, Tampa, Anaheim, San Francisco, Seattle, Sacramento, Eugene, and San Jose. My marathon of travel culminated in a once in a lifetime trip to Kauai with my love, GF Guy.

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He has most of the pictures. But, once he posts them, I can promise you all a Gluten Free guide to Kauai featuring the best seafood on the island, a swim in a waterfall, a traditional Hawaiian lunch at a road side food truck, and a helicopter ride through the beautiful island that now holds a piece of my heart.

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We arrived home on Sunday, just in time to pull together a mini St. Patrick’s Day get together. In “traditional Irish fashion”, I whipped up a big pot of Pumpkin Chili. (riiiiight…..). The side dish, however, was the real star of the evening! I knew I had to make something green, but detest the thought of using artificial coloring. Instead, I used a healthy helping of spinach to transform Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Cornbread Mix into a festive, green side dish that packed a veggie punch!

My “Sneaky Veggie” Cornbread is an excellent way to get those picky eaters in your family to eat more vegetables and have fun while doing it!

“Sneaky Veggie” St. Patrick’s Day Cornbread

(Gluten Free, Dairy Free)

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Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Puree almond milk and spinach in a blender until smooth.
  3. Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and whisk until smooth.
  4. Pour batter into a greased 9×9 baking pan.
  5. Bake in preheated oven until done, about 30 minutes.
  6. Cool slightly before serving.

Shaved Brussels Sprouts & Fennel

I am, as much as this pains me to admit, sick….

A fever, chills, sore throat… The Trifecta.

Had you seen my shopping basket at Whole Foods a few hours ago, you would have steered clear! Wellness Blend, Sambuca, Vitamin C, Cold Season Tea….

I was like a walking germ alert. Kids, this is what happens when you move clear across the country from your family, your husband is traveling, and you get sick. You are left to fend for yourself. It’s not pretty. It’s not glamorous. This is, straight up, life, my friends! Currently, I have some sort of concoction of chicken broth and vegetables simmering in the crock pot. Not so sure how it will turn out, but at least I won’t have to think about making dinner later.

Before being slammed in the face by “the sickness”, I had a chance to play in the kitchen with one of my favorite ingredients, Brussel Sprouts! Since my head is about to explode, and I need another cup of tea, I am going to cut to the chase, and let you all get on to the recipe. Bon Appetit!

Shaved Brussel Sprouts & Fennel

(Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan)

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp Coconut Oil
  • 7-8 Brussel Sprouts, thinly sliced/shaved
  • 1/4 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • Sea Salt, to taste
  • Black Pepper, to taste
  • 2 Fennel Fronds, thinly sliced
  • 1 large clove Garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup dry White Wine

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add brussel sprouts, red pepper flakes, season with salt and pepper, and saute 5-6 minutes.
  3. Add the fennel to the pan and cook 2 minutes more.
  4. Add the garlic and cook just until fragrant, about 1 minutes.
  5. Deglaze the pan with the wine, reduce the heat to medium-low and allow to reduce, 5-7 minutes.

Balsamic Dijon Roasted Vegetables

I had grand plans to make a stir-fry, or a stuffed chicken breast, or something fancy for myself for dinner this weekend.

Then, the time came around to eat and all I wanted were vegetables. …Lots and lots of vegetables.

I walked a block to my favorite little Italian market and returned with a bag brimming with veggie goodness and good Italian Balsamic vinegar. The dinner preparation was minimal, the meal was delightful, and the clean-up a cinche. I even had leftovers for lunch the following day! …I win….

Roasted vegetables have to be one of my favorite foods. What about you? What is your favorite roasted vegetable recipe?

Balsamic Dijon Roasted Vegetables

(Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan)

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 large Yellow Onion, chopped
  • 1 cup Brussel Sprouts, halved
  • 1 Yellow Squash, chopped
  • 1/2 pint Cherry Tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup Carrots
  • 1/2 cup Crimini Mushrooms
  • Herbamare
  • Black Pepper
  • Thyme
  • Rosemary
  • Parsley
  • 2 Tblsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Tblsp Dijon Mustard
  • 1 Tbslp Balsamic Vinegar

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Place all vegetables in a large bowl and toss with herbs and spices.
  3. In a measuring cup, combine the EVOO, Mustard, and Vinegar. Whisk until well combined.
  4. Pour liquid over the vegetables and gently toss until evenly coated.
  5. Spread vegetables in an even layer on a foil lined baking sheet.
  6. Roast in the preheated oven for 45 minutes to an hour, or until tomatoes burst, stirring every 20 minutes.

Maple Pumpkin Cornbread

So…. I made a new recipe. It looked and tasted delicious. It tasted so delicious, in fact, that GF Guy and I ate it all before I got around to taking a picture…. (insert hashtag #foodbloggerproblems)

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I debated posting the recipe or not, since there is no picture. In the end, I decided to risk it and use a stock photo (giving proper credit, or course). Hopefully you will all forgive the oversight once you taste it.

This cornbread recipe could almost be called a corn-cake. Sweet and airy, this moist cake tastes like a fall version of Boston Market’s cornbread, only gluten-free and dairy-free! I ate some with pumpkin chili and another piece for dessert topped with a little pumpkin puree!

Maple Pumpkin Cornbread

(Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)

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Ingredients:

  • 2 large Eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4 cup Sugar
  • 1/3 cup pure Maple Syrup
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup Water (2/3 cup if baking at a high altitude)
  • 1 cup Pumpkin Puree
  • 1 cup Cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup Sorghum Flour
  • 1/4 cup Tapioca Starch
  • 1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Xanthum Gum

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. (375 degrees F if baking at a high altitude)
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, oil, sugar, maple syrup, cinnamon, water, and pumpkin puree until smooth.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients and stir until just combined.
  4. Pour batter into an oiled 8×8 baking pan.
  5. Bake 35-45 minutes, until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean.
  6. Cool completely before serving.

Simple Veggie Saute’ for One

….because sometimes simple is better.

Do you ever crave a plain-jane meal? No bells and whistles…. Just good, simple, straight forward flavors?

I sure do. Sometimes all my body wants are vegetables, pure and simple. I could just have a salad, but that’s not always the ticket around here. Last night, I was in a just such a veggie mood. I opened the crisper drawer, hauled out every last scrap of produce I could find, and set to work. I chopped and sauteed my little heart out (for all of 10 minutes) before sitting down to a heaping bowl of veggie goodness.

Naturally, I topped my bowl with mashed avocado for some heart healthy fats. I’ve noticed my clothes are getting a little loose lately. Time to amp up the fats in my diet again! For those of you who don’t know, I tend to lose weight fairly easily, especially when I’m not working out consistently (backwards sounding, I know…) I have to make sure to include a good amount of healthy fat in my diet to keep at a consistent weight.

My favorite fat sources are:

  • Walnuts
  • Avocado
  • Salmon
  • Chia Seeds/Flax Seeds
  • Coconut Oil
  • Coconut Milk (Ice cream anyone?!)

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What about you? What are your favorite healthy fats?

Simple Veggie Saute’ for One

(Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan)

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 tsp Coconut Oil
  • 1/4 Yellow Onion, chopped
  • 5 large Crimini Mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 clove Garlic, minced
  • 1/2 Zucchini, chopped
  • 1 Roma Tomato, chopped
  • Sea Salt & Pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 Avocado, mashed

Directions:

  1. Melt oil in a saute’ pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the onion and saute’ about 5 minutes, until translucent.
  3. Add mushrooms and cook 3 minutes, until they begin to sweat.
  4. Add zucchini and cook about 3-4 minutes more.
  5. Add garlic and saute’ 1 minute, until fragrant.
  6. Quickly add the chopped tomato to keep the garlic from burning.
  7. Cook until tomato begins to break down.
  8. Season with salt and pepper.
  9. Serve topped with mashed avocado.

Herbed Quinoa Pilaf

Fun times and frivolity have been in abundance in the Gidget household.

Mama Gidget came for a visit. We are both hyper-active to begin with. Put us in the same room and chaos ensues! We dominated a Farmer’s Market, painted the town, jammed to my old school record collection…

…and even managed to completely redecorate my apartment, all in 3 days!

We ate out once, then opted to cook at home using our Farmer’s Market haul the remaining days. You can’t beat local, organic celery, tomatoes, hybrid cauliflower, cucumbers, zucchini, corn, kale, spinach, sweet potatoes, basil, parsley, dill, and cilantro. I don’t care who you are!

I made the following Quinoa side dish to accompany our dinner one night. The leftovers of which rounded out our remaining meals!

Herbed Quinoa Pilaf

(Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan)

Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. Place quinoa, water, and bay leaf in a medium saucepan.
  2. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover, and cook 12-15 minutes, or until all liquid has been absorbed.
  3. Remove the bay leaf, season with herbamare and pepper, and fluff with a fork.
  4. Gently fold in Earth Balance and fresh herbs.

Mirin Thyme Roasted Vegetables

Roasted vegetables are my jam!

I love them on salads, on pasta, plain, hot, or cold. I could eat them for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. You get the idea….

I am always looking for new ideas for flavor combinations and stumbled upon this one quite by accident. I was reading a recipe for roasted mushrooms that called for white wine. I didn’t have any, but did find a bottle of mirin tucked in the back of my cupboard. Mirin is kind of a wine, I thought…. So, I went for it!

The resulting vegetables were utterly delicious! GF Guy and I devoured them, sadly leaving no leftovers. (sniff) I guess I will just have to make some more!

Mirin Thyme Roasted Vegetables

(Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan)

Ingredients:

  • 1 Broccoli Crown, chopped
  • 1/2 Yellow Onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • 1 bunch Organic Rainbow Carrots, chopped
  • 1/4 lb mixed Chantrelle and Maitake Mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Mirin
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • 2 tsp dried Thyme

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Place all ingredients in a large bowl and gently toss until evenly coated.
  3. Pour onto a foil lined baking sheet and spread into an even layer. Make sure all mushrooms are facing cap down.
  4. Roast in preheated oven for 25 minutes, or until desired done-ness.

Sundried Tomato Carrot Top Pesto

The farmer’s markets in Denver have opened, and I finally got around to going!

GF Guy says this is a picture of me in my “natural habitat”.

The market was a gluten free treasure trove! We bought organic, local zucchini, black kale, tomatoes, rainbow carrots, onions, peaches, gorgeous Chantrelle and Maiitake mushrooms, and a delicious sweet red wine! We also stumbled upon a gluten free pasta stand and gluten free cupcake stand! Next time…..

The lovely young man at the vegetable stand offered to discard the rainbow carrot tops for me, but, for some reason, I refused. Perhaps it is the frugal person in me, but I figured I could do something with them. Well, that “something” turned out to be a delicious pesto! I’m not sure where the idea came from. GF Guy and I were sitting in the car, driving to Super Target, when I turned to him and stated, out of the blue, that I would be making pesto out of the carrot tops. He is used to completely random statements from me, so, taking it in stride, he nodded and kept driving. (He was probably trying to figure out where we could order take out from if the pesto was a bust….) 

Truth be told, this was my first time making normal pesto. I make avocado pesto all the time, but never regular pesto with olive oil. I didn’t bother googling how it’s done. I just went for it. It was probably beginners luck, but I will take it, because this pesto is AWESOME!!!!!!

Sundried Tomato Carrot Top Pesto

(Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan)

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 bunch of Carrots Tops
  • 1 large clove Garlic
  • 1 Tbsp Sundried Tomatoes, packed in Oil
  • Sea Salt & Black Pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast Flakes
  • 1/4-1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Directions:

  1. Place the first five ingredients in a food processor and process until finely chopped.
  2. Slowly drizzle in olive oil until desired consistency is reached.
  3. Adjust seasoning.

Cilantro Quick Bread

Last night, GF Guy requested Pumpkin Chili for dinner….. again….
It is his absolute favorite dinner, and he gets very offended when people don’t like it! (…which has actually never happened. People have refused to try it, but have never disliked it once they do.) Anyway, I was going to make cornbread to go with our chili, but the grocery store I went to didn’t carry any “Celiac-Safe” Cornmeal. As tempted as I was to just buy the Quaker Cornmeal, I knew it was not a good idea. On to plan B! I used the ingredients I had on hand to make a delicious quick bread that paired perfectly with the chili! This recipe makes 3 small loaves. We only ate one, and I can’t wait to use the other 2 for a recipe I have floating around in my head. Enjoy!
Cilantro Quick Bread
(Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Nut-Free)

Ingredients:

  • 2 large Eggs
  • 3 Tbsp Oil
  • 2 Tbsp plus 1 tsp Sugar
  • 1 cup Earth Balance Vegan Mayonnaise
  • 3 Tbsp Water
  • 1 cup Brown Rice Flour
  • 1/2 cup Gluten Free Oat Flour
  • 1/4 cup Cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 tsp Xanthum Gum
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 tsp Cream of Tartar
  • 3/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1/3 cup packed fresh Cilantro, chopped

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 3 mini-loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the first 5 ingredients until smooth.
  3. Add all remaining ingredients and stir until smooth.
  4. Pour into mini-loaf pans and bake 15-20 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center of one loaf comes out clean.
  5. Cool 10 minutes in the pan before turning onto a cooling rack to finish cooling.
  6. Serve with Pumpkin Chili
The post is linked to Allergy Free Wednesdays over at Tessa the Domestic Diva & Gluten-Free Wednesdays at The Gluten-Free Homemaker.