When most people think of food from Wisconsin, the first things that usually comes to mind is cheese or beer. Ten years ago, when I lived in Milwaukee for a period, I learned that fish fry should make the list.
Folks new to the gluten-free diet often assume cornbread is gluten-free, but most recipes use wheat flour along with cornmeal in the batter. In this cornbread, brown rice flour and ground almond flour replace the wheat flour, providing a moist, cake-like texture that still has the crunchy mouthfeel you expect from cornbread.
The recipe, inspired by a reader's request for a gluten-free version of her favorite cornbread, falls on the sweet, rich end of the spectrum. It's more cake than cornbread and tt's definitely not something youd' serve with chili. In fact, it reminds me of the Italian cornmeal cake my grandmother made during the summer and served with a warm berry compote for dessert.
Most of the time poutine is annoyingly gluten-filled. You wouldn't think so, since it's just fries, gravy and cheese curds. Yet I've been unable to find a restaurant that serves gluten-free poutine. There are usually one or two gluten culprits at play, either the gravy contains wheat flour or the fries are made in fryers that are shared with gluten-containing foods; sometimes it's both. So when I recently got the taste for poutine, I headed into the kitchen instead of into a restaurant.
Around here--upstate New York on the border of Vermont, maple season just kicked into full swing. As is his annual tradition, my husband bought several pints of homemade maple syrup from his co-worker. And as I type this, there's an almond maple cornmeal cake in the oven. (I'll post that recipe next week!)
All this maple reminded me of my recipe for maple blondies. Moist and filled with maple flavor, these blondies are perfect on their own or cut into small cubes and served with a dish of vanilla ice cream.
This simple pasta dish goes by many names across the county including--but certainly not limited to, American Chop Suey and Johnny Marzetti. Growing up, we called it 'goulash.' Whatever you want to call it, this pasta dish is easy to prepare and remarkably tasty! . . .
March 13, 2012
The other day I tried to create chewy gluten-free chocolate chip cookies, and while this version missed the chewy mark, they was so flavorful that I didn't mind. The flavor comes from golden syrup and browned butter, two ingredients you don't usually find in chocolate chip cookies. They lend a nutty, caramel-like flavor to the already buttery cookies.
While these aren't super-chewy cookies, they are softer than traditional gluten-free chocolate chip cookies because of the golden syrup, egg yolks, and a low baking temperature. If you prefer soft and chewy cookies, under-bake the cookies slightly. To do this, reduce baking time until the cookies are just set and faintly brown on the edges. . . .
Did you grow up eating snickerdoodles? I did! My husband? Not so much. The first time I made a batch, he eyed them and said something like, "What? No chocolate? I thought there were Snickers in snickerdoodles."
Ah, nope! In the cookie world, snickerdoodles are a quiet charmer. Unlike fancy cutouts or "everything but the kitchen sink" cookies they don't scream for attention. But snickerdoodles aren't boring! Thanks to a generous amount of butter, cinnamon, and vanilla, snickerdoodles are packed with flavor. And isn't that why we love them?
Their classic flavor isn't the only thing that makes a snickerdoodle a snickerdoodle. They also have a unique texture. And this is where snickerdoodle lovers divide.
I like mine puffy with crisp edges and a soft, almost cake-like center. Others prefer snickerdoodles flat and crisp. What's a baker to do? Simple--v . . .
At football parties, few things frustrate me more than a plate of piping hot pigs in a blanket that I can't eat. (My team losing would be the #1 thing that frustrates me. I'm looking at you Green Bay.) A few years ago, I grew tired of this--it was time for a gluten-free version.
Traditional wheat-based pigs in a blanket are often made with store-bought dough, usually crescent dough or puff pastry. Those of us on the gluten-free diet currently don't have the option of using pre-made dough. While not as easy as popping open a can of dough, this gluten-free pastry isn't tough to make.
To prepare the dough, simply cut some butter (or shortening) into dry ingredients, add an egg and some milk and stir until a firm dough forms. That's it.
These can also be made ahead of time and frozen. After wrapping each wiener in dough, place them on a baking sheet. Place the baking sheet in the freezer for about three hours, until they're firm. Then place the pigs in a blanket in a plastic bag and return to the freezer.
When you're ready to serve, preheat the oven and bake from frozen. . . .
A few years ago, when one of my readers asked me to create a gluten-free version of Campbell's green bean casserole, I was excited. Until then, I had never eaten the classic Thanksgiving side. After perfecting the recipe, a funny thing happened: several of my friends revealed themselves to be secret green bean casserole lovers. Now I make this for Thanksgiving every year. Another huge part of the tradition is munching on the freshly fried onion strips.
I was reminded of this when I first attempted to make gluten-free mozzarella sticks. The cheese sticks kept melting in the hot oil. Instead of crispy sticks with oozy centers, I had cheese that was a runny mess. Then I remembered a technique I hadn't used in years: double dipping during the first part of the standard breading procedure.
The classic standard breading procedure calls for you to . . .
My favorite ricotta cheesecake kicks off "Cake of the Month". It's lighter in both taste and texture than cream cheese cheesecakes. And, if you've never had one before, you might be surprised by the texture. It's slightly "gritty". But not in a bad way, I promise!
A great pancake-waffle divide exists in my home. I'm a pancake person. My husband? He loves waffles.
For years I made waffles that I adored. They were delicate, with a slightly crisp exterior and a soufflé-like interior, and, thanks to a bit of buttermilk, they had a mild tang.
One morning my husband looked down at his plate and said, "You know, I don't love these. They're too soft, too pancake-like. I like waffles to be more, I don't know, waffley." You know you're in trouble when someone needs to make up a word like "waffley" to describe what they don't like about your cooking.
Looking at the recipe, I noticed that it contained a high percentage of wet ingredients. I decided to tighten the batter by increasing the amount of dry ingredients. This worked: the resulting waffles were crisp and no longer pancake-like. I made one more change. I swapped the buttermilk for milk in order to lose the buttermilk pancake-flavor. Now the waffles tasted, well, waffley!
These waffles are fantastically easy to prepare. Unlike some recipes, you don't need to whip the egg whites to lighten the batter. A generous amount of baking powder provides the lift, giving you a light, crispy waffle.
To make preparing the waffles even easier, measure the . . .
Have you ever made crackers? Even though my love of crackers began at an early age, I'd never made a batch until I started baking gluten-free. I don't know why, but making crackers seemed mysterious to me. Turns out, it isn't mysterious at all!
Making the dough is easy, especially if you have a food processor. You just need to cut the fat (butter or shortening) into the dry ingredients. Like making a pie crust, this creates little layers of fat that leave the crackers flaky when baked. But crackers need a little more than just cutting the fat into the flour to achieve the correct texture.
After a few batches, I realized the key to making crackers is rolling the dough thin. Really thin. If you don't get the dough thin enough, the crackers resemble a savory shortbread more than a true cracker.
Enter parchment paper! When you roll the dough between two pieces of parchment, you can roll it super-thin without any hassle. After rolling, slide the parchment, dough and all, onto a baking sheet. Then just pull the top piece of parchment away and score the dough. Since the crackers are baked on the parchment, they break apart easily once baked. (And if this technique seems familiar, it's because we used it to make graham crackers this summer.)
Made with a combination of brown rice flour and sorghum flour, these crackers remind me a little of Wheat Thins, only better. They'd be perfect with any cheese you might be serving on New Year's.