Posts Tagged ‘dairy free’

when the temps drop eat gingerbread

Monday, November 17th, 2014

0081I love all the New England food classics that I grew up with in 1950’s Massachusetts.  Gingerbread has and always will be at the top of the list of Indian Pudding, Toll House Cookies and Boston Cream Pie, to name a few. The aroma of this spicey treat brings me back to  snowy days where my hopes were bent on getting a hot piece right out of the oven topped with fresh whipped cream and tomorrow being a snow day off from school!

This is a twist on the old classic. I can’t remember how I came upon it, but since it has Guinness Stout in it, well, you know…… It is dark, rich, moist and absolutely scrumptuous!

Boil 1 cup Guinness Stout (drink the rest!) with 1 cup dark molasses. Take off the heat, transfer to a bowl and add 1 1/2 teaspoon baking (bread) soda. This will bubble up and expand so make sure it is in a medium sized container.

In a mixing bowl add 2 cups white flour, 2 Tablespoons of ground ginger, 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder, 3/4 tsp. cinnamon, 1/4 tsp. cloves, 1/4 tsp. nutmeg, 1/8 tsp. cardamom.

In a separate bowl beat 3 eggs with 1/2 cup white sugar, 1/2 cup dark brown sugar and 3/4 cup good vegetable oil.

When the Guinness has cooled, add it to the dry mix, beat and add egg mixture. Beat until smooth.

Use your pan of choice, tube, bundt, or I use a  8×8 greased baking pan and a 12 mini muffin pan.

Grease the pan and bake in a 350 degree oven for 30-35 minutes or until a tester comes out clean.

ENJOY!

snow days call for pancakes!

Monday, February 17th, 2014

Tired of the snow, ice and sub zero temps in the Northeast USA!  It’s time for some really tasty comfort food. Let’s start with Breakfast.croppedpancake1I created this new recipe while stuck in the house during a blizzard last week. I love the combination of buckwheat and spelt flour. Buckwheat is gluten free but spelt is an ancient wheat that many people who are wheat sensitive can tolerate.

The trick for making good, nutritious meals is having all the right ingredients. This might be a challenge if you are trying to eat gluten, wheat or dairy free, and using natural sugar substitutes. All of these ingredients are now available in supermarkets or your local Health Food Store and the flours have a long shelf  life so just stock up and store in airtight containers for freshness.  You can substitute whole milk and butter for soy milk and oil. And, use an egg substitute and eliminate honey if you are Vegan.  Enjoy!

Buckwheat Spelt Pancakes

In a large bowl mix together 2 eggs, 1 1/2 cups almond or soy milk. Beat in 2 Tbl. olive oil, 2 Tbl. Agave syrup, maple syrup or honey.

In another bowl mix together 1 1/4 cup spelt flour, 1/2 cup buckwheat flour and 1/2 cup brown rice flour. Add 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder and 1/2 tsp. baking soda. Grate 1 tsp. fresh nutmeg and add.

Slowly pour wet into dry ingredients, mixing with a hand blender or in a food processor. Batter should be thick but not heavy.

On medium heat, warm up a griddle or fry pan. Add a Tbl. of oil or butter.   Pour 1/3 cup of batter into pan. Cook until pancake is bubbly, flip and cook for no more than a minute.  Keep warm on a baking sheet in low temp.oven.

Fresh Fruit Compote

Cook 1 cup fresh cranberries in 1/2 cup orange juice, 1 Tbl. honey, 1 tsp. vanilla and 1 Tbl. Agave syrup. Add 1 chopped, peeled apple and cook til cranberries and apples are soft. Take off heat and add 1/2 cup chopped, toasted pecans.

Stack pancakes, spoon over compote and drizzle with maple syrup.  Yum!!!!

the fresh flavors of spring

Thursday, May 2nd, 2013

saladFinally it’s here. The hedgerow is blooming at last. Nettles, wild garlic, hawthorne, primrose and violets ready to eat!  I have the pleasure of giving a Hedgerow Cooking Class at Boghill for a journalist from the UK, who is doing an article on the Burren Food Trail and Boghill’s own Culinary week May 13-16. It was a challenge, given the late arrival of Spring  this year in Ireland. But, we managed to pick enough wild edibles and fresh young greens and herbs from the gardens for a great learning experience and a delicious meal. I wanted to include a variety of recipes that are not only made from the food around Boghill but that are an example of the menus we create for clients with diverse diets such as gluten and dairy free and vegan. So, the menu included a salad made entirely from garden veg, herbs and wild flowers. Green Goddess dressing was blessed with mint, fennel, chives and parsley. The Nettle soup was light and delicious, including lovage, wild garlic and spring leeks.  Penne  pasta was dressed with a tangy wild garlic pesto. A spicey corn bread recipe from Coming Home to Cook used chives, parsley and Boghill’s chicken eggs. A blancmange was light and sweet garnished with primrose and violets. Crispy vegan ginger snaps and a fresh herb tea of lemon balm and mint rounded out this exceptional lunch. So, get walking on the paths and lanes and start foraging to make your own!

NETTLE SOUP – serves 6

Pick 1 litre of young nettles, preferably tops. Be careful, the leaves sting so pick from the stem. Wash and separate leaves from stem. In a soup pot, drizzle a few tablespoons of Irish rapeseed oil/ Add to it 4 washed and chopped leeks, 1 1/2 cups lovage, 1/4 cup wild garlic leaves.  Let cook until greens are wilted. Add 3 cups chopped white potatoes. Cook for a few minutes then add 1 litre of fresh vegetable stock. Bring to a simmer, cook until potatoes are tender. Add nettles and cook for 5 minutes. Puree soup. Add sea salt and cracked black pepper.

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Between the seasons

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

sliced-loafSpring has not come to Ireland yet.  The fields are still brown, not at all like the Emerald Isle!  But, we had a good drenching of rain in the past 24 hours and already everything is looking fresher.

It feels like we are in between seasons. It’s  still cold and looks grey but the daffodils, primroses and spring gentians are up and gradually, a few things in the garden are sprouting. So, to alleviate the “winter is too long blues” I decided to invite some friends for dinner.

I don’t know if there’s anywhere else I’ll ever live where  guests come  bearing their own cheese made from their own goats and  fresh lambs lettuce salad from their early spring (or is late winter?) garden.  And, hiking up from the edge of the Atlantic on the Cliff path, more guests arrive with backpacks full of French wine and chocolates. Add to that, French baguettes and pastries from Fabiolas Patisserie,  a warm fire, a stunning sunset and the night is indeed, a success!

For another memorable dinner party last winter in NJ, a friend made a Lentil Loaf from an English Vegetarian Cookbook . I thought it was perfect for this occassion but I tweeked it, leaving out the cheese and changing the spices according to what has wintered over in my little herb garden. Pair it with roasted potatoes, ginger honey carrots and soy gravy from my cookbook and you have a hearty, impressive meal. Enjoy!

Red Lentil Loaf

serves 6, cook at 350 or gasmark 4 for 1 1/2 hours.

12 oz. cooked red lentils, 1 1/2 cups hard cider, 1 large onion, 1 large carrot, 1 large stalk celery, 2 cloves garlic, 4 large button mushrooms,1 1/2 tsp. thyme and rosemary, 4 oz. hazelnuts, 1 Tbl. chopped parsley, 2 eggs, sea salt and pepper.

Cook lentils in cider until all liquid is absorbed. Finely chop onion, carrot, celery, mushrooms and garlic. Saute all in olive oil until cooked. Beat eggs. Roast hazelnuts in oven until brown, about 10 minutes. Grind in a food processor. Mix all ingredients together, it will be mushy.  Spoon into an oiled bread pan (tin) or line with parchment paper. Bake for 1 1/2 hours or until brown and skewer comes out clean. Let sit for about 15 minutes to set. Remove from pan and slice.

Happy Spring from Ireland!

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Stuffed Zucchini Blossoms

Monday, July 30th, 2012

blossomsMid July and it’s finally summer in Ireland. Everyone was afraid that week of perfect weather in May was it for the season. So, as the sun shines down on us, the gardens are finally coming into bloom. I picked zucchini, blossoms and  parsley, kale and fennel that were as green as you would expect on the Emerald Isle.  Zucchini blossoms are traditionally dredged in flour, milk and egg and batter fried or stuffed with meat and cheese. All these options are great but as a vegetarian, I’m trying to eat low fat and for the moment, I’m staying away from cheese. So, I created this scrumptious,  healthy dinner that was received with rave reviews from my dinner guests. As one satisfied friend exclaimed, “the flavors are really developed!” Try it, you won’t be disappointed!

Stuffed Zucchini blossoms over butternut squash-coconut pureeroasted-garlicSteam 1 medium butternut squash, let cool and save liquid for soup stock.

Boil 2 cups of water, add 1 cup of quinoa and cook until done. This will produce about 3 cups cooked.

While squash and quinoa are cooking, toast in the oven 2 Tbl, sunflower seeds and 2 Tbl. chopped almonds. Separate 4 garlic cloves , put a little olive oil in a baking dish and roast until they become whilted and start to brown (as above).

In a little olive oil saute 1 cup  finely chopped kale, with 2 large button mushrooms and 1 medium oniuon.

Steam 1 medium zucchini (courgette) in Ireland! let cool and puree. Squeeze water out.

Chop 1 Tbl. fresh parsley and 2 Tbl. fresh fennel.

Mix together parsley, fennel, nuts, sauteed veg. and quinoa. Pick of end of garlic clove and squeeze garlic into mixture. Add Zucchini puree and mix all together, add sea salt and cracked black pepper.

Pick the stems off the zucchini blossom and wash lightly. Dry and stuff with filling. You can do this by tearing a side and rolling or just filling it up.

Butternut Squash Puree

Puree the squash with 2 heaping Tbl. creamed coconut, 2 Tbl. minced ginger, 2 Tbl. chopped fennel, a whole lime juiced, sea salt , black pepper and a very small dash of cayenne pepper. The consistency will be smooth and creamy. Place 1/2 the puree in a baking dish, lay the blossoms over and cook for 20 minutes at 350, gas point 4.

Have fun garnishing with baby zucchini, herbs, lime wedges. Enjoy this delicious, healthy vegan meal!

Shopping List: quinoa, zucchini, blossoms, fennel, parsley, sunflower seeds, almonds, kale, mushrooms, onion, garlic, creamed coconut, butternut squash, fresh ginger root, lime, cayenne pepper, sea salt, black pepper.