Monday, October 27, 2014

The Best Gluten Free Potato Gnocchi!

I can't tell you how happy it made me to get this recipe right because of how hard it is to find great homemade gluten free pasta recipes. I've tried a few gnocchi recipes in the past but they,while tasty, usually fall apart pretty easily. This recipe was adapted from the great book 'Gluten-Free Pasta' by Robin Asbell.
These babies are easy to make, hold together beautifully and taste amazing! A great way to use up left over mashed potatoes and a lovely holiday dish for the gluten free vegetarians in your family. I topped them with a simple sauce of roasted eggplant, yellow squash, heirloom tomatoes and fresh basil.

The Best Gluten Free Potato Gnocchi:

Ingredients
  • 3-4 gold potatoes, peeled, quartered and boiled until tender(10-15 minutes)
  • 1/4 cup garbanzo flour
  • 1/2 cup potato starch, plus more for work surface
  • 1/3 cup finely grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
  • 2 egg yolks
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
Instructions
  1. In a large mixing bowl mash cooled, cooked potatoes with a potato ricer until fairly smooth. 
  2. Add remaining ingredients and combine with a wooden spoon until a soft dough forms, you may need to add more potato starch until dough is just firm enough to not stick to your fingers.
  3. Turn dough out onto counter dusted with potato starch and knead gently a few times. 
  4. Split dough into four equal sized pieces and roll into long tubes with your fingers. Tubes should be about the thickness of your thumb. Cut each tube into 1/2 inch pieces and place on waxed paper covered cookie sheets until you are ready to cook them. 
  5. To cook gnocchi, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and drop gnocchi in carefully. Stir gently. Gnocchi are done about a minute or two after they float to the surface. Remove with a slotted spoon and toss with a bit of olive oil or Earth Balance to keep them from sticking.
Roasted Eggplant Tomato Sauce:

Ingredients
  • 1 large eggplant, seeded and cubed
  • 2 yellow squash, cubed
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 TBSP olive oil
  • 8-10 leaves fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 large heirloom tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 TBSP Earth Balance margarine
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Toss cubed eggplant and squash with 2 TBSP olive oil and spread on a cookie sheet evenly. Bake in a 375 degree oven for 15-20 minutes until softened and lightly golden, tossing half way during cooking. Remove from oven and set aside.
  2. In a large saute pan, heat remaining olive oil under medium heat and saute garlic until golden, 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add tomatoes, basil, Earth Balance, salt and pepper, roasted veggies and toss until well combined and tomatoes wilt slightly. Earth Balance will melt and thicken the sauce a bit.
  4. Spoon over gnocchi and top with grated Romano if desired.
Serves 4


Monday, October 20, 2014

Harvest Apple Cider Cocktail!



























Like so many of us who find ourselves with a ridiculous number of apples after an apple picking trip, I might be posting a ridiculous number of apple recipes this month! This recipe came about after I impulsively purchased a bottle of gluten free pumpkin spice vodka and needed to find some fall inspired drink recipes. I also happened to have some fresh apple cider on hand(apple picking trip) and this recipe blends these flavors into a perfect cocktail for a Halloween party or Thanksgiving get together. Spicy and yummy! Apple pie in a glass!

Harvest Apple Cider Cocktail:

Ingredients
  • 1 1/4 cup apple cider
  • 1 cup gluten free pumpkin spice vodka(I used Spud)
  • Splash lemon juice
  • 1 TBSP maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup ginger ale
  • Apple slices and cinnamon for garnish

Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a large cocktail shaker and shake well.
  2. Serve with ice and apple slices. Sprinkle with cinnamon for garnish(optional)
Serves 2-3

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Gluten Free Apple Cobbler!

Happy Fall! I've finally accepted that summer is over and it's time to embrace the beauty of the fall harvest. Including freshly picked apples right off the tree!
I try to limit the number of desserts I make and eat simply because of health and weight loss reasons but I can't resist making an apple dessert in the fall or around holiday time. One of my favorite fall desserts is this apple cobbler. I was worried about trying this family recipe gluten free but yay the first time I made it this way, it came out super delicious! I like to eat mine warm topped with vanilla gelato(I used Talenti Tahitian Vanilla Bean which is gluten free). Curl up with a blanket and enjoy Cobbler Heaven! Recipe below.



























Gluten Free Apple Cobbler:

Ingredients
  • 1/2 peck apples(or around 10),(I used Macintosh), peeled, cored and sliced
  • 6 TBSP organic cane sugar
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1 cup plus 2 tsp all purpose gluten free flour(I used Bob's Red Mill)
  • 1/4 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2/3 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 egg
  • 1 TBSP cinnamon
Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Toss sliced apples with 1 TBSP cinnamon, 1 TBSP sugar and 2 tsp flour in a large bowl and set aside.
  3. Measure flours, salt, xanthan gum and sugar into a large mixing bowl. Add vanilla and cut in shortening using a fork or pastry cutter until mixture is crumbly.
  4. Add egg and mix until dough forms. Texture should resemble cookie dough. You can add a little more flour, if dough is too wet.
  5. Spread apples in a large baking dish and top evenly with dollops of cobbler dough.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes until cobbler is golden and apples have softened.
  7. Serve warm with gelato or whipped cream.
Serves 6

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Early Fall Mini Vacation and Vineyard Visit!



























I can't believe it's October already! The summer is always over too fast but I managed to escape to the seaside for a mini vacation last week when it was still summer warm with blue skies.
Stonington, CT is a really gorgeous little seaside town close to the border of Rhode Island. I've been going there for years and I find it so relaxing to wander the streets and admire the old mariners mansions with their widows walks and sea views. I spent a few hours just watching and photographing the many sailboats that passed by from the lighthouse point.
Another fun venture is a visit to the local Stonington Vineyard. It's a tiny vineyard on a country road where they make their wine from grapes grown on the land and I've found some tasty treasures here. This visit I discovered their Pink Noir blend which really hit the spot on this steamy Indian summer day. Very crisp and light but not sweet, I could drink this all summer and be happy!

Hope you enjoy scenes from my mini vacation and next week I'll finally be diving into fall and blogging my famous gluten free Apple Cobbler recipe so stay tuned!!