Sunday, November 22, 2009

pumpkin manacotti

I ordered this at a restaurant sometime in September and was quite impressed. Luckily the flavors were simple enough that I could reproduce fairly easily.


Pasta Shells Manacotti or Shells or anything that can be stuffed
1 squash (I used butternut, but you could use pumpkin or any other similar orange squash)
1/2 cube butter
1 container marscapone cheese
1/2 cup (approx.) pecorino romano cheese (or some other similar cheese), grated (freshly grated is best)
sage (dried worked fine)


1. Bake squash/pumpkin. Cut in half and remove seeds, place both halves in baking dish flat side down with about 1 inch of water. Bake at 350-375 for 45 minutes or until completely soft.

2. Once squash has cooled a bit, remove peel. If the squash is stringy, process in food processor. Add the butter, sage, salt, and pepper while it is still warm. This can be done ahead of time, since the mixture doesn't need to be warm when the shells are stuffed.

3. If you are using dried pasta, cook it. If you're using fresh pasta, make it. I made GF pasta and rolled it out into rectangle shapes to stuff.

4. Stuff pasta shells or manacotti with pumpkin mixture. Put in lightly buttered baking pan. Bake covered for 30-35 minutes at 350. You want it to be basically done at this point. Remove from oven and spread marscapone on top. The marscapone melts almost like butter. Add grated cheese on top and bake until cheese is melted and it looks done.

Monday, November 16, 2009

small victories

A few months ago, I exclaimed to my co-workers that I had made pizza at home. I don't think they understood how amazing it is to have pizza that was actually good.

The recipe comes from the Betty Hagman book, but I'm a firm believer in the buckwheat flour (which is not what the recipe in her book calls for):

Thin Pizza Crust

Let sit until bubbly (about 10 minutes):

1 1/2 tsp yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1 tsp sugar


2/3 c. rice flour
1/3 c. tapioca starch
2 tbsp buckwheat flour
1/4 tsp xanthan gum
1 1/2 tbsp melted butter
1 tsp salt

The consistency will be similar to frosting. Spread on a buttered pan. Bake at 425 for about 10 minutes, then add toppings and bake another half hour or so until browned.

Part of the victorious feeling that came from this recipe is the discovery that rice flour and tapioca starch can be purchased in the asian section of the grocery store for about 15% of what the bob's red mill costs. So wonderful.

Another flour that is amazing is millet flour, although I have a harder time finding millet flour in the store so I've been using buckwheat more often.

Another victory: rice noodles. These are about the same price as regular gluten free pastas, which is nice. They taste fantastic and are delicious when made into Pad Thai.

This summer we made strawberry, raspberry, raspberry-lime, and amber raspberry jam, all of which were amazing. It's so nice to have a stock of jam that didn't come from the store. The raspberry-lime is by far my favorite.

Another summer discovery: half pecks of basil at the farmer's market. All summer we would go and buy a huge bag of basil (for only $8!!). I would make a huge batch of pesto, so we had fresh pesto all summer long. We kept a big container in the refrigerator... great for sandwiches, eggs, and pasta (of course).

So those are the victories of the summer: buckwheat flour, delicious crispy crust pizza, raspberry jam, pesto. Wonderful.

fall is here!

It's been a while. My exam was last week, so up until then I was buried in loss models. Now that it's over, I can focus on really important things, like Thanksgiving and Christmas.

We're making Limoncello to give as Christmas gifts this year. Here are the lemon rinds soaking in the alcohol. Hopefully you can see from the photo how the alcohol has started to turn yellow.

I've never made this before, so who knows how it'll turn out. Here's hoping that it turns out delicious. One of the results of this paticular project is that I now have about 6 cups of lemon juice in the freezer. Any suggestions for the juice that don't involve zesting more lemons?
My next project, though not food related, is certainly Christmas related. I'm working on an advent calendar. Here are the first ten numbers that I've made:
Hopefully I'll have the other 15 done in time for Advent! I'm going to make a tree to put them on eventually.
That's all for now. Looking forward to Thanksgiving. There's so much to be thankful for.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

chicken pot pie

I was home studying this afternoon, craving chicken pot pie. therefore, i present:

Chicken Pot Pie (GF Style)

Mix in 9x9 caserole dish:

2 chicken breasts (cut up)
1 broccoli crown chopped into small pieces
1/2 c. frozen peas
1 onion
1 clove garlic
1 1/2 c. chicken broth
1/2 c. soymilk
1 tsp sage
2 tbsp parmesan cheese

top with crust:

1/2 cube butter
1 c. brown rice flour
1/2 c. potato starch
1 handfull grated mozarella cheese (this was what i had, but any kind would be good)
a few tbsp chicken broth to moisten

bake at 400 for 30-45 minutes.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

first real snow!

after a fantastic weekend away (we went to New Buffalo, on Lake Michigan, for the weekend), we came home to a cold house. i have been craving chicken noodle soup for a while, so we had soup for dinner. last week i cooked a kabocha squash (the japanese name, i'm not sure what they are in english) and it needed to be used, so i made pumpkin bread.

Chicken Noodle Soup

sautee in a little bit of olive oil:
1/2 onion
4 stalks celery
2 parsnips
add: chicken

once chicken is browned a bit, add chicken broth and water (make sure to check for GF chicken broth) - i used about 5 cups.
while the above is boiling, make the noodles (used Betty Hagman recipe, but i didn't have potato starch, so i used all cornstarch):

2 eggs
1 tbsp Xanthan Gum
1/3 c. tapioca flour
1/3 c. + 2 tbsp corn starch
1/2 tbsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil

use cornstarch when rolling out - i have an attachment for my Kitchen Aid stand mixer that rolls out pasta, which is amazing, but if you don't have that, just use a rolling pin.
add noodles to soup. also add:

1/2 tsp sage
1/4 tsp corriander

delicious soup!

Kabocha Bread:
(adapted from Betty Hagman recipe)

beat together:

1 1/2 cups cooked squash
4 eggs
1/2 c. mayonaise
1 1/3 c. rice flour
1/3 c. cornstarch
1/3 c. tapioca flour
1 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp baking soda
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp ginger
3/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp allspice

mix together.

bake at 35o for 50 - 60 minutes. makes 2 loaves:

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

the first taste of winter

This morning, while it was pitch black outside and I was dreading going outside to scrape ice off of my car, my mind wandered to what else, but food. Dinner for tonight, to be exact.

On the kitchen table sat: two rutabegas, a pumpkin, some onions, and part of a bottle of wine. Cabbage in the fridge. Not inspiring to some perhaps, but I am looking forward to dinner tonight:

Roasted Rutabega:

Cut rutabega into 1/2 inch cubes. If they're bigger they take longer to bake.
Coat with:
orange juice concentrate
dijon mustard
olive oil
other spices, as you desire

Spread onto a baking sheet or two they brown better if they aren't too thickly spread on the sheet. Put in 400 degreee oven and bake! Baking time depends on how much you have.

This recipe is really best when a variety of root vegetables are used: rutabega, turnip, beets, sweet potato, yam, parsnips. The beets have to be cooked on a separate try from the other veggies or everything turns pink, but here's what it looks like:

and here's what they look like when they're all cooked:

When you use all of the different kinds of vegetables, even if you only use one of each, you end up with quite a lot. Luckily these are fantastic left over.

Baked Pumpkin:

Cut pumpkin in half (small pie pumpkin)
Place flat sides down in baking dish with 1/2 inch of water.

Throw in oven with rutabegas.

Eat with salt, pepper and parmesan cheese.

Braised Cabbage:

Cut cabbage into wedges (red is better, but greens usually cheaper, so take your pick)
brown briefly in a large pot with oil
add some red wine and close the lid.

cook until done.

Delicious winter foods. Delicious.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

small victories

1. fruity pebbles and cocoa pebbles are gluten free. i think. don't take my word for this! Rice chex certainly are, though.

2. i made pasta. the recipe in the betty hagman book is fantastic.

3. i have breadsticks rising on the stove.