Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Vino Mustard Gravy

I made this gravy to go with my goose, and I'm actually in love with it and plan on marrying it. I have been dipping my bread in it, bacon, veggies, etc. so --I think it's good.

12 oz Broth (I made goose broth w/ goose innards-- chicken broth canned is fine)
2 1/2 tablespoons Goose fat (or chicken, bacon, fat. an alternative is olive oil-- but won't be as good)
1/3 cup Red wine
3 tablespoons Grain mustard
3 Cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons Corn starch
Salt & pepper to taste

Place broth, garlic and fat in sauce pan and bring to simmer. Let simmer for about 5 minutes, then add red wine and mustard and stir well. After another 5 minutes of simmering add salt and pepper then corn starch. Stir well, breaking up any clumps of corn starch that may have formed. Simmer for another 5 minutes and remove from heat. Sauce should thicken nicely. This should keep well in the fridge for about a week or so, unless you eat it all! great

I was in the grocery store last week, and passed a sign reading: Goose $.99 per pound. Now not only is this a VERY price, it was organic, and free range-- but I've never made goose. So I just put it in the cart and I knew I'd figure it out-- besides I didn't have plans that night.

I got home, opened The Joy of Cooking and started reading about roasting a goose for a general guideline. I found that JOC used the same roasting temp for chicken and turkey. Chicken and turkey have more meat on them and cook slower, so I deviated from JOC quiet a bit and it turned out great.

1 Goose-- thawed
5 stocks of Celery
1 onion

Preheat oven to 375 (JOC says 450-- but it started cooking too quick and would have been tough). Place goose in roasting pan and remove innards (set aside the liver, this is valuable!). Place 5 stocks of celery and 1/2 onion inside the goose and tie the legs together. Poke small holes in the fat throughout the body to allow juices to flow (this helps the meat becomes more tender-- its a goose thing). Poke about 4-6 larger holes and place a slice of butter between the skin and the meat. Sprinkle entire body of goose with thyme, garlic, salt and pepper. Place goose in the oven to roast. You should time roasting to 15 min per pound. Geese have less meat on them then a turkey or chicken, so it will cook quicker (which I found out mid roasting!). So keep that in mind so you do not over cook. About halfway through baste goose with it's own juices. After it is fully cooked remove goose and cool. Make sure to keep ALL the goose fat the will form in the bottom of the roasting pan, this is valuable cooking material people! Trust me, you'll use it, and I'll tell you how. Enjoy your lovely goose!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Almond Chocolate Sesame Bars

Gosh- I couldn't figure out what to name these! There are so many great I mention the almonds, sesames, you have to mention the chocolate, what about the flax?, and then they are kind of layered bars too....Hopefully the picture will suffice. This is a great dessert or treat to serve at a party. They are sweet with a little bit of savory, little bit of crunch with some deep rich chocolate. Some nutrition info: sesames and sesame oil have a very positive effect on white blood cell count (your immune system)-- I've seen the blood tests to prove it, the only thing is that they have high omega 6's (not so good), so I have counter balanced them in this recipe by adding flax meal which is very high in omega 3's. THEN...there's the coconut oil in the chocolate--coconut oil is soooo good for you, medium fatty acid, connected to weight loss, antibiotic properties, great enzymes-- its a super food people. *Sighhh maybe I'll have dessert all day :-)

Allergy Resume: Primal, Grain-free, Sugar-free, Dairy-free, and of course Gluten-free!

3/4 cup Almond butter
1 egg
3 tablespoons Sesame oil
3 tablespoons Flax meal
3 teaspoons Stevia
1 teaspoon Salt

Preheat oven to 350. Place almond butter, egg and sesame oil in bowl and mix well. Add flax meal, stevia and salt. Let sit for a few minutes to let the flax meal soak in moisture. In a loaf pan (think loaf of bread), line with tin foil and grease well. Pour batter, it should only be about 1/2 an inch thick. Bake for about 20 minutes until a tooth pick comes out clean.

Chocolate ingredients:
1/4 cup Coconut oil
1 1/2 tablespoons Heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon Stevia
2 square of Unsweetened baker's chocolate or 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 teaspoon Sesame oil
2 teaspoons Sesame seeds

Place coconut oil in pan on low heat until it melts. Add chocolate and mix well (with heat still on), next add stevia, sesame oil and sesame seeds. Mixture should be very liquid and warm but not simmering. Add cream and stir for about 2 minutes. If the cream and chocolate liquid separate, remove from heat and continue to stir. You'll have to wait for it to cool before it will combine so just keep on string, when it is cohesive. When the almond layer (from above) is cooled pour the chocolate layer on top and put in the freezer to cool. When the chocolate layer has hardened cut and serve. I actually stored them in the freezer so that the almond layer was extra crunchy, they thaw very quickly so no need to worry about serving ice blocks, but the chocolate will look a little frosted. ENJOY!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Hemp Flax Pancakes: think multi-grain

I wasn't going to post today but after making these for breakfast I really felt I had no choice. These taste very similar to a multi-grain or buck wheat pancake but are much healthier for you! I use pure Hemp protein powder, which is my new favorite thing! Chock-full of fiber, omega 3 and essential fatty acids, it is a real power house food. If you don't have hemp protein powder (I'm betting you don't) don't sweat it! You can use your favorite protein powder, just be mindful of the flavor you're using and I would not recommend using egg white protein. Also, these are super allergy friendly: no dairy, gluten, grains, or sugar...just smiles!

Allergy Resume: Primal, Sugar-free, Diary-free, Grain-free, and of course Gluten free!

2 egg whites
1 tablespoon Hemp protein powder
1 tablespoon Flax meal
1/2 tablespoon Cinnamon
2 teaspoons Stevia (you can adjust based on your taste)
1/8 teaspoon Baking powder
1/8 teaspoon Baking soda

Place egg whites in bowl and beat until light and fluffy (before they are stiff). Add hemp powder and flax and mix well. Add remaining ingredients and mix well-- then let sit for about 5 minutes so the flax can soften. Warm and grease your griddle and bring to medium heat. Pour silver dollar size amount of batter into pan and cook for about minute and flip. These go great with maple syrup, jam, nut butters or whipped cream. I made a spread with equal parts yogurt, almond butter and butter and it was DE-lightful.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Chocolate Cookie Sheet Cake

I love this cake be it looks so simple and normal, you would never ever think it was anything special-- but it is! It's light and fluffy with a rich chocolate flavor that isn't too intense or sweet. It really is one of a kind. My whole life I have had chocolate cookie sheet cake as my birthday cake. It is my absolute favorite! Before my endoscopy testing for Celiac I made the cake with the original recipe and ate the whole thing myself (in 2 days)-- it was disgusting, but I loved it. Last year was my first birthday with Celiac and my first birthday without the cake. For my birthday this year I decided that I would need to recreate it as close as possible. Considering I do not eat grain flour or sugar, this would be a difficult feat. Also, many recipes include nuts, I leave them out because I think they interfere with the fluffy taste. After a whole day of testing this was pretty darn close...and I did eat most of it.

Allergy Resume: Grain-free, Sugar-free, Gluten-free!

2 cups Coconut flour
2/3 cup Stevia
2 1/2 sticks of Butter
5 tablespoons Cocoa powder
1 cup Boiling water
3/4 cup Buttermilk
7 eggs
1 tablespoon Honey
1 1/2 teaspoon Baking soda
1 teaspoon Apple Cider

Mix eggs, buttermilk together in a bowl. Melt butter and add to the mixture. In a seperate bowl mix cocout flour, cocoa powder and stevia. Add the liquid mixture to the dry mixture and stir well, so that there are no clumps. Add boiling water and honey and continue to stir. Lastly add baking soda and apple cider, mix well. On a well greased cookie sheet, pour chocolate mixture and bake or about 20 minutes or until tooth pick comes out clean. Let sit for only 5 minutes before adding frosting.

Frosting ingredients:
2 cup Palm shortening
1/4 cup Honey
2 tablespoons Stevia
5 squares of baking chocolate
1 cup of Cocoa powder

Measure out 2 cups of palm shortening and place in bowl. Melt chocolate squares in microwave and add to shortening, then mix with electric mixer. Add stevia, cocoa powder and stevia and mix again for several minutes until frosting is light and fluffy. Microwave for about 10-20 seconds to make frosting more malleable so you can pour it onto the cake. Smooth out and let sit. Frosting will seep into the cake a bit (which is good) and harden on top once cake and frosting have cooled. I recommend serving this cake warm-- it truley is a different cake, but is still very good at room temp. Perfect with a scoop of ice cream ;-) Happy Birthday!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Cauliflower Flat Bread

I was so glad this worked out cause it is so versatile! This is a soft flat bread that can be rolled like a wrap or used as a piece of bread. I used it to make salmon tacos and they were DE-licious! This version is savory but I think converting it to a sweet flat bread would be pretty easy (think crepes!).

Allergy Resume: Primal, Sugar-free, Grain-free, and Gluten-free!

1 cup pureed Cauliflower
3 Eggs
2 tablespoons Flax meal
1/4 cup Cheddar cheese (or your favorite cheese)
2 minced Garlic cloves
2 teaspoons Oregano
Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375F. Boil cauliflower until soft. Place in food processor and blend until smooth. Place cauliflower in bowl and add eggs and flax meal and mix well. Add cheese and spices to batter, again mixing well. Spread parchment paper over a cookie sheet and pour batter onto sheet. Smooth out batter into a thin sheet and and bake until browned-- about 25 minutes.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Free Trade Coffee...what is it really?

With all of the grass roots activities: "support the little guy", "Free Tibet" movements it's hard to keep track of what's what and when you don't know what's what....sometimes you don't even ask because you feel like you should know. Well this is how I felt about Free Trade Coffee. I didn't really know what it was, but I knew it was something good. Perhaps I am the only one who doesn't know what it is, in which case you can skip this article :-)
Free Trade Coffee: Basically it includes smaller farmers in the large industry of coffee trade. It helps create partnerships with smaller, poorer farmers and the big players of the coffee industry-- so that "Big Starbucks" isn't just buying from "Big Joe" coffee farmer but also little Jimmy's coffee farm down the road. Fair trade also gives more of the profit to growers instead of retailers. In the early 2000's farmer's lowered their prices, while retailers raised theirs, giving retailers an even larger share of the profits. This has put pressure on farmers to try to speed up their farming process to increase production-- but at the cost of quality. Speeding up the growth process reduces natural sugar and taste of the beans-- not to mention its' negative impact on the environment.
Fair trade coffee aims to include impoverished farmers in a profitable business and pay them a fair wage for their grueling work, and allows them to farm in a sustainable fashion. Fair trade coffee can result in twice the profit for the farmers but may not mean that you actually pay twice the price for your morning brew. Often, with fair trade coffee, a middle man is cut out of the supply chain, putting farmers in direct contact with retailers. This means that your cup of coffee might be a bit more expensive, but not double the price. So a small price increase in your coffee (often 10 more cents a cup) can really mean a world of difference to impoverished farmers. So even if you choose not to buy free trade coffee, at least now you know what it is!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Easter Truffles: Coconut Cream Baskets

These sure are cute :-) and they're pretty darn good too! They require chocolate cup molds, make sure they are deep enough to hold the coconut cream filling. I bought my molds at the local crafts store, but I'm sure more mainstream cooking stores would have them too.

Allergy Resume: Primal, Sugar-free, Dairy-free, Gluten-free!

1/3 cup Coconut oil
3 squares of 100% chocolate-- try to use a good brand
2 teaspoons of Stevia
2 tablespoons Cocoa Powder

Coconut cream
1/3 cup Coconut milk (full fat)
1/8 cup Shredded coconut (unsweetened)
2 teaspoons Vanilla
1/2 tablespoon Stevia
1 teaspoon Honey
2 tablespoons Palm shortening (if you don't have sub with coconut oil)
** optional jelly beans for garnish

Start with the chocolate cups: Place the coconut oil and hard chocolate in a small pan and heat on low. Oil should turn liquid quickly, stir until chocolate also melts. Then add cocoa powder and stevia (you might want to taste to make sure it's to your sweetness-- this can be a personal preference). Remove from heat and let cool for about 10 minutes. Pour small amount into molds. Note that the chocolate is still liquid, while it hardens, mold chocolate to sides of the molds (this may take awhile to harden and stick).
In small pan heat coconut milk and palm shortening. When mixture becomes hot, but under a boil, mix in remaining ingredients and stir constantly for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and refrigerate to speed up cooling. When mixture is cool and thick spoon into chocolate cups and place jelly beans to garnish. Place back in fridge to finish cooling and serve!

Easter Truffles: Cinnamon and Rum

These are quicker and easier than my other Easter truffles and do not require molds. They do not have a hard outer shell but are still rich and delicious. I made cinnamon and rum flavors (in separate truffles), although as I make this post it sounds good in the same do what sounds good to you!

1/2 can Full fat Coconut milk
1/2 tablespoon coconut oil
4 square of 100% Chocolate
1/2 tablespoon Stevia
1/2 tablespoon Honey
1 tablespoon Cocoa powder

1 tablespoon Cinnamon (optional flavor)
1 tablespoon Dark rum (optional flavor)

In small pan heat coconut milk and oil on low heat. Keep milk just under boiling and add in chocolate squares and stir continuously. When chocolate has melted add coco powder, honey and stevia. Continue stirring. Continue to heat for about 3 more minutes. Mixture will start to thicken slightly, this is when you will mix in your flavoring (note if you add rum-- mix quickly because it can burn). Remove from heat and let sit, stirring every 5 minutes. It will take about 20 minutes to thicken and harden. When mixture hardens spoon out quarter sized balls and place on parchment paper. Garnish with cocoa powder or cinnamon so you can distinguish the flavors. Refrigerate to help chocolates harden, but serve at room temperature.

Easter Truffles: Peanut Butter Bacon Ganache

These truffles have pretty much all of my favorite foods in one...except for baby back ribs. They take you from sweet to savory and right back to sweet again, just make sure to declare the meat to any of your veggies friends! You'll also need some truffle cups or chocolate molds for these (I got mine at a local crafts store for $1.99). Also, because the sizes of molds vary its tough to say exactly how much chocolate and ganache are needed for your molds, so use your best judgement and make sure you have extra ingredients so you don't run out incase your molds require more. When you pick out your chocolate molds you really want a deep cup-- these are not to be layered, as they wont hold shape and will fall apart. So make sure they are cups (pictured on the right).

1/3 cup Coconut oil
3 squares of 100% chocolate-- try to use a good brand
2 teaspoons of Stevia
2 tablespoons Cocoa Powder

Peanut butter Ganache
1/4 cup Heavy Whipping cream (if dairy free use 100% coconut milk)
1 tablespoon Peanut butter
1/2 tablespoon Cocoa powder
2 slices of Bacon
1 teaspoons Stevia
dash of Salt

Start with the chocolate cups: Place the coconut oil and hard chocolate in a small pan and heat on low. Oil should turn liquid quickly, stir until chocolate also melts. Then add cocoa powder and stevia (you might want to taste to make sure it's to your sweetness-- this can be a personal preference). Remove from heat and let cool for about 10 minutes. Pour small amount into molds. Note that the chocolate is still liquid, while it hardens, mold chocolate to sides of the molds (this may take awhile to harden and stick).
Place heavy whipping cream in a pan and heat on medium low heat. Get cream close to boiling but avoid an actual boil. Add peanut butter and mix throughly, then add cocoa, salt and stevia. Lower temperature to low and stir constantly and ganache will begin to thicken. Cook bacon until crunchy-- either in microwave or pan. Chop bacon into small pieces and add to ganache. Remove ganache from heat and let cool about 10 minutes before adding to chocolate to cups. Place cups in freezer for 20 minutes and allow to harden. Once they have hardened remove and pour remaining chocolate over the top of the cups to seal them off and return to freezer for another 20 minutes. When you're confident they are hardened flip chocolate molds upside down and carefully remove truffles from molds. Then try not to eat them all at once :-)

Friday, April 2, 2010

Chipotle Mayonnaise

Homemade mayo can be a bit tricky to make, but once you get it-- it seems super easy and you'll wonder why you ever bought it? This is a great twist on mayonnaise adding chipotle, which is sure to spice up your every day sandwich, or a delicious dip...really you can put it on anything-- I do.

2 Egg yolks
1 cup of olive oil
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons chipotle powder

In a medium bowl, beat egg yolks well with an electric mixer. Very slowly add oil, one tablespoon at a time in, beating constantly until light and creamy. Once all oil is added stir in lemon juice, garlic and chipotle and mix well. Viola all done. Make sure to refrigerate immediately as mayo is notoriously known for spoiling.

Harvest Herb Bread

This is a delicious substitute for your whole grain seed bread. Its great as toast with chutney or for a sandwich. I had a lovely ham sandwich with my homemade chipotle mayonnaise.

1 cup Almond butter
2 Eggs
1/4 cup Sunflower seeds
2 tablespoons Flax meal
1 teaspoon Apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon Baking soda
1 tablespoon Minced garlic
2 teaspoons Oregano
2 teaspoons Thyme
2 teaspoons Salt
2 teaspoons Pepper

Preheat oven to 350. In large bowl mix almond butter and eggs. In a small cup place flax meal and 1 tablespoon of water and let flax soak for a few minutes until it becomes a gel. When gel forms add to almond mixture. Chop sunflower seeds and add to almond mixture followed by thyme, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper, mix well. Lastly add cider vinegar and baking soda. Grease a small loaf pan and pour batter into pan. Sprinkle some sunflower seeds on top and bake bread for about 1 hour or until tooth pick comes out clean. Enjoy!