Sunday, December 26, 2010

Hearty Herbed Beef Stew (Crock Pot)

This is perfect for a cold winter evening. I've been making this recipe for years and simply adapted it using a gluten free flour blend (I used King Arthur GF). An all-time favorite comfort food...

2 lbs. lean beef round - cut into @ 1" cubes
4-6 carrots, peeled and cut in to large chunks (slice lengthwise - cut into 2" pieces)
4-6 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into large cubes
8-10 oz quartered baby bella (crimini) mushrooms (cleaned)
1 large sweet onion, peeled and cut into chunks
1 clove garlic - minced
2 - 2 1/2* cups beef broth (check for gluten)
1/2 c. red wine (cabernet, shiraz etc.)
1 bay leaf
2 tsp. worcestershire sauce (Lea & Perrins is GF)
1 rounded tsp. chopped fresh basil or 1/2 tsp. dried basil
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley or 1 tsp. dried parsley
1 rounded tsp. fresh marjoram, or 1 tsp. dried marjoram
4 Tbsp. gluten free flour blend (King Arthur GF flour blend works well)
1/4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

Mix together the flour blend, paprika, salt and pepper. Put the beef into the slow cooker, add the seasoned flour and toss with the meat to coat. Add the remaining ingredients with 2 cups* of the beef broth and mix well.

Cover and cook on High 4 - 6 hours, or Low 10-12 hours. My preferred method is High for about 4 hours and Low for 2-3 hours. Makes @ 6-8 servings.

*If the gravy seems too thick towards the end of the cooking time, you can add additional broth as needed.

For a wonderful bread accompaniment, serve with these gluten-free Crusty Baguettes (made with Pamela's Wheat-Free & Gluten-Free Bread Mix).

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Chocolate chewies!

This recipe was published Los Angeles Times in the SOS (reader request) column.

I've made them a few times and have my notes added to the basic recipe.

This is another recipe I have stumbled onto not because it was adapted for GF folks, but that it is naturally GF. It's like a fluffy, crispy chewy brownie - yum! All folks can enjoy it.

Torrance Bakery Chocolate Chewies

Active Work Time: 30 minutes * Total Preparation Time: 1 hour

1 cup egg whites (fresh is best, NOT from a carton says me)

1 and 3/4 cups Dutch-process cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

5 and 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1 pound walnut or pecan pieces (I have only used walnuts and they were dandy)

Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Mix together the egg whites, cocoa, salt and sugar on medium speed until the batter is stiff and all ingredients are well incorporated, about 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the walnuts or pecans by hand.

Place the batter by rounded teaspoonfuls onto the baking sheet; work in batches. Bake until the cookies are a bit shiny and slightly cracked, 10 minutes. They will look underdone but do not overbake.

48 cookies. Each cookie: 125 calories; 34 mg sodium; 0 cholesterol; 7 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 17 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams protein; 1.67 grams fiber.

These are like brownies crossed with meringue - crisp on the outside but nicely dense and chewy on the inside. I had a bit of a time removing mine from the parchment paper, but I could have been using a type with less silicone. You could also try baking them on a silpat.

This recipe halves well.

Once cooled, store in an airtight container..

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Wonderful Gluten-free Crusty Boule!

I found this bread on the gluten-free girl and the chef blog, and it originally came from Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë Francois, authors of Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day. Their book has a section on gluten-free baking. Shauna, (the gluten-free girl) helped them perfect the loaf. And I must say it's amazing - and especially if you have the patience to let the dough rest in the fridge for several days. I made Shauna's delicious olive loaf version - and the difference from the first loaf (made the same day I mixed it), to the second loaf (which resided in the fridge for almost a week) was fairly dramatic. The first loaf was good, but flavor of the second loaf was much more complex... I loved it lightly toasted and dipped in olive oil with Zatar... 

1 cup brown rice flour
3/4 cup sorghum flour
1 1/2 cups tapioca flour
1 tablespoon granulated active dry yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon xanthan gum
1 1/3 cups lukewarm water (heated to 110°F)
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons canola oil
1 tablespoon honey
2 handfuls kalamata olives, sliced
2 sprigs fresh rosemary, taken off the stem and finely chopped
olive oil
coarse sea salt

Mixing the flours. Mix together the brown rice flour, sorghum flour, tapioca flour, yeast, salt, and xanthan gum in the bowl of your stand mixer (or a large bowl, if you are doing this by hand).

Making the dough. Add the water, eggs, oil, and honey to the dry ingredients. Mix with the paddle attachment (or with a large spoon if you are mixing by hand) for a few moments until the dough has fully come together. It will be soft. It will sort of slump off the paddle. Don't worry. That's the right texture. Add the olives and rosemary and mix one more time.

Letting the dough rise. Put the dough in a large, clean bowl and cover it with a clean towel. Put the dough in a warm place in your kitchen, then leave it alone to rise about 2 hours.

You can now use the dough. Or, you can refrigerate it in a large container with a lid. The dough stays good for a week. Refrigeration overnight does seem to improve the flavor, as well.

Baking the bread. Shape 1 pound of the dough into a squat oval shape or small ball. Sometimes, wetting your hands helps if the dough feels too sticky. Let the dough rest for 40 minutes. (If you are pulling the dough out of the refrigerator, let it rest for 1 1/2 hours before baking it.)

Half an hour before you will put the bread into the oven to bake, turn on the oven to 450°.

(Now we slide a Dutch oven in there to heat up. Be sure the knob on your dutch oven lid will withstand the high temperature! (Replacement knobs are available). Jeff and Zoë recommend a pizza stone in the oven and a pizza peel sprinkled with cornmeal for resting the bread. Please make sure both are never before used, if you are gluten-free.)

Before baking, make 1/4-inch-deep cuts with a serrated knife to the top of the dough. Pour on a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with coarse sea salt.

Put the dough into the Dutch oven, cover, and return it to the hot oven. (Or, slide the loaf from the pizza peel onto the hot baking stone.) Close the oven door and bake the bread until the top has lightly browned and the bread feels firm, about 35 minutes. (Also, the internal temperature of the bread should be at least 180°.)

Per Jeff and Zoe I baked mine for 20 mins with the lid on and 15 with the lid off... 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Perfect Gluten Free Toll House® Chocolate Chip Cookies!

Well, I never thought I'd experience a cookie like this again... it's both chewy and crisp and totally "Toll House"... with the exception of the flour. RUN, don't walk to Trader Joe's and get some Peanut Flour. Then substitute it 100% for the wheat flour in the Nestle Toll House® recipe - it's amazing.


  • 2 1/4 cups Trader Joe's Peanut Flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large egg
  • 1 (12 ounce) package NESTLE® TOLL HOUSE® Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels
  • 1 cup chopped nuts


  1. PREHEAT oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. COMBINE flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.
  3. BAKE for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.