Thursday, February 24, 2011

Spiced Quinoa Breakfast

Yes, another Quinoa recipe. Honestly though, I can't get enough of this stuff. It's healthy, it's nutty, it's so versatile. I also love how easy it is to prepare :) Just toss the ingredients into your little rice cooker then go about your morning tasks then 20 minutes later you have a delightful breakfast. 

Start out by rinsing 1/2 cup of golden quinoa. You know the drill with this stuff....rinse, rise, rinse ;) Then place 1/2 orange juice and 1 cup water in a saucepan or rice cooker. Bring to a boil the add the rinsed quinoa. Next, measure out and add to the pot 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, a dash or two of nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1/4 teaspoon orange zest. Now comes the hard part....cover it then walk away. I know...tough stuff right?

20-30 minutes later your quinoa will now be nice and cooked and ready. Top with fresh strawberries and add milk, cream, almond milk, whatever tickles your tastebuds. Then drizzle a bit of honey on top and BAM. You have a spicy, tangy, nutrient infused breakfast :)


1/2 cup rinsed quinoa
1 cup water
1/2 cup orange juice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
dash or two of nutmeg (or 1/8 teaspoonish)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon orange zest

milk, strawberries, and honey for garnishing

Rinse quinoa and set aside. Bring orange juice and water to a boil. Add quinoa then stir in cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla extract, and orange zest. Cover, then reduce heat to a simmer then cook on medium heat for 20-30 minutes or until quinoa is cooked and there is no remaining liquid.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Home Brewed Green Chai Tea concentrate

Hey everybody! Who here loves Chai Tea??? I know I sure do. Who here HATES spending $4 for a cup of Chai??? I bet you couldn't guess....I do. Plus, there is so much gosh darned sugar in a cup of chai that you would get at a local coffee shop.

I recently found a recipe for brewing your own chai tea concentrate at home. Then YOU can control how sweet it is and you can make it for a fraction of what you would pay to buy just one cup of tea. Plus, it will make your house smell amazing! In fact, I made a batch yesterday and I can still smell the spicy goodness this morning :)

Ok, start out by putting 4 1/2 cups water in a saucepan with 10 tea bags. I love my green tea, so that is what I used. You can also use black tea for this recipe as well.

Now add 2 cinnamon sticks broken in half.

Next assemble your herbs. You will want 1 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated ginger root or 3 thin slices. Then 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, 7 cardamon pods (now if you are like me in UT and couldn't FIND cardamon pods, there are roughly 12 seeds in a pod so you can do the math and add the seeds or add 1 teaspoon ground cardamon), 2 whole star anise (I did not have the whole star anise so I used 1 teaspoon anise seeds as one star anise equals 1/2 teaspoon seeds), and 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper.

Next add 10 whole cloves.

Now grate up 1 teaspoon orange zest.

Place all the ingredients in the saucepan and bring to a boil.

Remove from heat and allow to steep for 15-20 minutes. Pour into a cheesecloth to strain out liquid

Now you can add sweetener now or later. I prefer to sweeten mine by the cup. If you would like the concentrate sweetened, stir in 2/3 cup brown sugar and 1 tablespoon honey.

That's all there is too it. You can keep this in the refrigerator and make yourself some delish chai tea at home by pouring equal amounts of concentrate to milk or almond milk.


I think I will go warm me up a cup now hehehehe ;)

Here is the printable recipe:

Spiced Chai Tea

4 1/4 cups water
10 tea bags of your choice (green or black)
2 sticks cinnamon broken in half
3 sliced medallions ginger root or 1 teaspoon grated ginger
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
7 cardamon pods (or roughly 80 seeds or 1 teaspoon)
2 whole star anise (or 1 teaspoon anise seeds)
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon orange zest
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon honey

Add all ingredients into a saucepan. Bring to a boil then set aside to steep 15-20 minutes. Strain liquid in a cheesecloth.

To serve, add 1 part chai concentrate to 1 part milk of your choice.

I will leave you with a picture of the remnants of the tea bags. Couldn't think of any other witty way to include the picture lol!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Gluten Free Creamed Asparagus Soup

Ok....I give in. Mother Nature is throwing storms, rain, cold, and snow at me despite my insistent rebelling. After my husband got muddy, wet, and cold on a dirt bike riding trip...and I got dirty, wet, and cold cleaning out the horse barn today we both are in need of some nice hot fiber and nutrient dense soup. Oh and did I mention how low calorie and healthy this stuff is?  Well...consider it mentioned. So while doning my warm fuzzy pink socks I am whipping up some surprisingly tasty green vegetable soup.

So how do we turn this:

Into this?

Read on my friends and you will see :)

Take one of these and dice up 1/2 cups worth.

Now take 1 pound asparagus, chop off the bottoms and throw away, then cut into 2" pieces. Keep the tops and set aside.

Now throw the 1/2 cup diced onion, asparagus pieces, and 2 cups chicken (or vegetable broth if you want this dish vegan). Heat on high and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to moderate high, cover, and simmer for 15-20  minutes until onion and asparagus are tender.

Now, set aside and allow to cool for a bit. Place in a blender and puree well. Meanwhile, pour 2 tablespoons olive oil in a pot. I just used the same pot I boiled the veggies in, I just rinsed it out. Then add 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper, and 2 tablespoons sweet rice flour.

Now take a cup of this (milk if you couldn't tell ;)

  whisk it in on medium heat. Keep stirring continuously until white sauce is nice, thick, and creamy. Then pour in your pureed vegetable base and mix well. Now you can use the tops of the asparagus for garnishing, or placed them in the soup and simmer for 5-10 minutes until they become tender to give the soup a bit of texture. Salt to taste and garnish with sour cream, greek or goat yogurt.

You will have to take my may be green,  but is is most definitely delish.

Creamed Asparagus Soup

1 pound asparagus
1/2 cup onion diced
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons sweet rice flour
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup milk or almond milk
salt to taste
sour cream, greek or goat yogurt for garnishing

Dice asparagus into 2 inch pieces. Set tops of asparagus aside. Place broth, asparagus, and onion into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower heat to medium high, cover, and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until onions and asparagus are tender.  Remove from heat and allow to cool. Pour vegetable and broth into a blender and puree well. Meanwhile, pour olive oil, sweet rice flour, and pepper in a saucepan whisking well to incorporate ingredients on medium heat. Slowly whisk in 1 cup milk and continue whisking until white sauce is creamy and thick. Pour in pureed vegetable base blending well. Place the tops of the asparagus in the soup and simmer for 5 or so minutes until they become tender.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Geneva's Creamy Cucumbers

Maybe it's my extreme suffering of cabin and spring fever. Maybe it's because the fresh crisp bite of a cucumber makes my mouth water, or maybe it's because there was a killer sale on cucumbers that spurred me to make this recipe. I just HAD to make my husband's grandma Geneva's Creamy Cucumber Salad. I'll be honest, I was very leery of trying this salad newlywed and eating dinner at her house...creamy cucumber salad? I was not too sure about that...Well, as to my surprise, this is quite the tasty concoction. I have found most anything out of that amazing woman's kitchen divinely crave worthy.

Now as the temperature drops and the storm blows in I am DEFIANTLY making a fresh springy salad. In your face Mother Nature.

All rebelling aside, the recipe is relatively simple.

Blend together the following sauce ingredients:

1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup evaporated canned milk
1/4 vinegar (apple cider or white)
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 drops Tobasco sauce. (now this amount will not make it spicy, just add a hint of tastefulness)
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon onion salt
(now if you do not have garlic or onion salt, just use garlic powder and onion powder, then add additional salt to taste)

Blend well then set aside.

Next, peel and thinly slice to about 1/8th of an inch thick 5 medium sized cucumbers. Place in a large bowl then pour sauce over cukes and stir well. Let this sit for at least an hour or more.

*disclaimer* The sauce WILL become very runny as cucumbers will weep water. This is fine. Serve this salad using a slotted spoon.

That is all there is to it :) I hope you are brave to make and try this for yourself.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Tuscan White Bean and Sweet Sausage Soup

Boy....that's a's also very nice to get a mouthful of this delicate and lovely soup. Your tongue will be tickled pink (YES....another reference to the best color ever) to savor the rosemary, garlic, and sweetness. Oh and did I mention it's healthy?? This little dish is full of fiber, protein, lycopene, iron, vitamins A, K, Iron....ya, you get the picture.

Even the picky munchkin will gobble up this soup.'s so darned pretty to look at. I really should have made this dish for Christmas. When I post the final pictures you will see why :)

Start out by grilling up 3 sweet italian turkey sausage links. Aren't they not so cute with a little grin?

Next, drain and rinse a can of Cannellini Beans.

Next, warm up a large soup pot on medium heat on the stove. While the pot is getting warm, assemble the following ingredients:

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon bottled garlic (or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder)
1 teaspoon minced rosemary
1/4 cup thinly sliced then diced onion
1 can tomatoes

When the pot is warm, add the oil, rosemary, garlic and onions. Add a dash or two of red pepper flakes (IF you like a bit of heat to your soup) and 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper. Saute on medium heat for about 5 minutes or until onions are tender.

Once the onions are nice and tender, pour in 1 quart gluten free chicken broth. I am using my faithful and trusty Pacific Foods brand broth. LOVE that stuff.

Bring broth to a boil, lower heat to a simmer, then add the tomatoes.

By this time the sausage should be cooked. Cut the links into 1/2" pieces and add to the soup then stir in the beans. Continue simmering for another 5 minutes. At that time, turn off the heat then add two handfuls of spinach (roughly 3 cups worth)

With a slotted spoon gently press the spinach into the hot broth. Let sit for 5 minutes or until spinach has become tender. Oh ya....and salt to taste ;)


SEEEEEEEEEE, it totally should have been a Christmas post.

Tuscan White Bean and Sweet Sausage Soup

2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon bottled garlic or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon minced rosemary
1/4 cup thinly sliced onion
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 dash red pepper flakes (opt.)
1 can drained rinsed cannellini beans
1 can tomatoes
4 cups (1 quart) gluten free chicken broth
3 cups spinach
salt to taste

Heat up your outdoor or countertop grill. When hot, place Italian sweet sausage on it and cook for 10 minutes or until sausage is thoroughly cooked.
Meanwhile, while the sausage is cooking, warm up oil in a large soup kettle. When oil is hot, add onion, garlic, rosemary, red pepper flakes, and ground black pepper. Saute on medium heat until onion is tender. Add broth, tomatoes, and beans. Stir, then salt to taste. When the sausage is done cooking, slice them into 1/2″ slices then stir into the soup. Bring to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat then add the spinach. Using a slotted spoon, lightly press spinach into the hot broth. Let sit for 5 minutes then soup is ready for serving.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Broiled Sesame Shrimp and Peppers

Salutations and happy Sunday. In light of our amazingly sunshine and somewhat warm weather Utah has gotten I thought a fresh and flavorful dish would be in order.

Start out with a couple of these

now slice them up into 1/4" thick and about 2" long strips

Set the peppers aside and get yourself a 1 pound of frozen shrimp. Place in a collander and rinse under hot water for about 30 seconds or so to thaw them out.

It's now time to get saucey :)

Gather together the following:

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground pepepr
dash of salt
1 tablespoon gluten free tamari soy sauce
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1/4 cup orange marmalade

Place in a small bowl and blend with a fork.

Now toss your peppers and shrimp with the sauce and place in a baking dish.

Place on top rack in the oven and broil for about 5-7 minutes. Check periodically to ensure shrimp do not get burned.

Top on your favorite gluten free noodles with minced green onions and sesame seeds. It's particularly yummy with rice or bean threads :)

Broiled Sesame Shrimp and Peppers

2 yellow bell peppers sliced into 1/4" by 2" strips
1 pound frozen shrimp
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
dash of salt
1 tablespoon gluten free tamari soy sauce
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1/4 cup orange marmalade
minced green onions
2 cups cooked gluten free noodles

Pre-heat oven to broil. Rinse frozen shrimp under hot water in a colander for roughly 30 seconds to thaw. Place shrimp in a bowl along with the bell peppers. Spoon ground ginger, pepper, salt, tamari soy sauce, red wine vinegar, sesame oil, and marmalade in a small bowl and blend together well with a fork. Pour over shrimp and peppers then toss to mix well. Place in a baking dish then in the oven on the top rack. Broil for about 5-7 minutes. Toss with cooked noodles, then garnish with diced green onions and sesame seeds.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Simply Sweet Sour Cream Cookies (of COURSE it's gluten free!)

Time to pull up a chair, pour a glass of ice cold milk, sit down, and enjoy a soft  milt in your mouth pink cookie. Now, you COULD make this little goodie any color you desire, but really, is there anything better in this world than a pink cookie? Didn't think so ;)

So slip that apron on, tighten up those strings, and lets get to work.

Start out by measuring out 1 cup sweet rice or regular rice flour, 1/2 cup brown rice flour, 2/3 cup potato starch and 1/3 cup tapioca starch. Place in a bowl then measure out 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, and 1 1/2 teaspoon guar or xanthun gum.
Sift all those lovely dry ingredients together.

Now cream together 1/2 cup butter flavored shortening, 1 egg, 1 cup sugar, and 1/4 cup powdered sugar.

Now stir in 1/2 cup sour cream.

Beat on medium high for roughly 1-2 minutes. Now start adding the dry ingredients. Add about 1/2 cup dry ingredients, blend, pause, scrape down sides, and repeat. Boy, I'm starting to sound a bit like a shampoo commercial.

When all the dry ingredients are added, blend on medium for another 1-2 minutes. You should now have some nice and creamy cookie dough. Resist the urge to sneak out a piece or two, cover with clear wrap, then place in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.

While chilling the dough, this would be a GREAT time to clean up your kitchen from the cookie making shenanigans. Not to turn on an old episode of Dog the Bounty Hunter....hehehe.

Now that your dough is chilled and the guilty indulgence of reality tv enjoyed, dust your countertop, fingertips, and rolling pin with sweet rice flour, then roll out half the dough to about 1/4 inch thick.

Place on greased cookie sheets and cook at a pre-heated oven to 375. Oh ya...did ditzy Jill forget to tell you to pre-heat the oven? So sorry about that! Bake your cookies on the middle rack for 8-9 minutes. Do not overbake as they will lose that lovely soft melt in your mouth goodness. Place cookies on a cooling rack to cool, and repeat the process on the 2nd half of the dough.

When the cookies are cooling, time to make the frosting. Easy peasy stuff. In your mixer, blend together 4 cups powdered sugar, dash or two of salt, 1/2 cup shortening, 4 tablespoons evaporated milk (adds SO much more richness then the standard milk), 1 teaspoon vanilla or cherry extract, and 4 drops red food coloring (becuase you ARE going to make the cookies pink right?????). Blend thoroughly and beat on high for about 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy.

It is now time to...."ASSEMBLE the cookie munching minions!"

Now once these babies were all dolled up, I just could not decide whether I liked the pink ones or red sprinkled ones. get both ;)

Gluten Free Sour Cream Cookies

1 cup Sweet Rice Flour Plus Extra For Flouring Your Work Surface
½ cups Brown Rice Flour
⅔ cups Potato Starch
⅓ cups Tapioca Starch
¼ teaspoons Salt
½ teaspoons Baking Powder
½ teaspoons Baking Soda
1-½ teaspoon Guar Or Xanthun Gum
½ cups Butter Flavored Shortening
1 whole Egg
1 cup Sugar
¼ cups Powdered Sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
4 cups Powdered Sugar
½ cups Shortening
4 Tablespoons Evaporated Milk
1 dash Salt
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Food Coloring To Desired Color

Preheat oven to 425F and lightly grease a baking sheet. (SEEEEE I did tell you to preheat hehe)
Sift together rice flours, potato starch, tapioca starch, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and xanthun gum. Set aside.
In a mixing bowl, cream together butter flavored shortening, egg, sugar, sour cream and powdered sugar. Beat on moderate to high for about 1 minute.
Slowly mix in the dry ingredients. Scrape the sides of the bowl periodically to ensure dry ingredients are blended well. Beat on medium for 1-2 minutes until dough is fluffy. Cover with clear wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.
Once dough is chilled, sprinkle a bit of sweet rice flour on a flat surface then dust finger tips and rolling pin. Separate dough in half and roll each piece of dough out to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut out cookies (using your desired cookie cutter) and place on greased baking sheet. Bake at 425F for 8-9 minutes. The bottoms should be a light golden brown. Don’t overbake as they will become hard.
Remove cookies to a rack to cool and repeat process with the other half of the dough.
While cookies are cooling, cream together all ingredients for the frosting. Beat on high for roughly 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. Color with desired food coloring and spread onto cooled cookies.

The End

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

10% off coupon for EVERYTHING at the Gluten Free Mall

Hey everyone! Just thought I would share this penny pinching money saving opportunity on anything at the Gluten Free Mall.

Visit Gluten Free Mall and enter coupon code 7492e7 when checking out :)

Monday, February 7, 2011

My Pozole Soup

Boy oh boy what a week. I must apologize for my MIA (missing in action) the last week. A lovely little flu bug has made itself quite comfy in my body. Thankfully I am past the point of feeling like a flesh eating zombie and can FINALLY give you all a lovely little recipe (which is quite perfect when you are feeling under the weather). Not that I wish that on anyone of course ;) Otherwise, this is a comforting warming soup that is easy to make and hopefully you all will enjoy.

Now, this is my own little twist on the classic Mexican Pozole Soup. I think it more evolved one day when I was wondering what to make for dinner while scanning through my freezer and pantry.

Start by warming up your grill. Now IF I had a full tank of propane I would be telling you to warm up your grill....but of COURSE my propane tank IS empty and I am reduced to using my George Foreman handy dandy grill. Now I really do LOVE this little grill, but for this recipe, I do recommend using the outdoor grill (so bear with me while I use the GF ok?).

Throw on two chicken legs or 4 chicken thighs (salt and pepper well). If you have McCormick's Grill Mates Montreal Steak use that. It's some WONDERMUSS seasoning that will go GREAT with this soup.

Let that cook for roughly 20 minutes (bone in) or 10 minutes if using de-boned thighs. Cook until fully cooked (wow, that's not redundant at all LOL). It will depend on your grill total cooking time.

While your chicken is cooking, pour 2 tablespoons olive oil or veggie oil in a large soup pot on medium heat. Add 3/4 cup of a diced onion and a tablespoon bottled garlic (or 2 crushed garlic cloves or 1 teaspoon garlic powder).

Once the chicken is nicely cooked, remove from heat and set aside to cool. You don't want your little fingertips burnt when shredding up your chicken ;)

While your chicken is cooling, lets get the "soup" part ready. Pour in 1 quart of gluten free chicken broth into your pot.

Stir in 1 tablespoon ground cumin.

Now add 1/2 teaspoon chili powder. (if you like it spicy, add a dash or two of cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes)

You will want the juice of 2 of these little babies (otherwise known as Key Limes). If you are not able to find any or don't have them on hand, the juice of 1 lime will do.

Now mince up some fresh cilantro. You'll want roughly 2 heaping tablespoons worth.

Toss it in the pot.

Now stir in two 4oz cans green chiles (or reduce to one can if your not a big chili fan ;)

At this point, salt and pepper to taste, then your chicken should be ready for shredding. Once shredded add into the soup mix then stir in about 2 cups drained hominy or add the amount desired. We like our soups hearty and full of chunky surprises.

Let your soup simmer on medium while you gather and prepare the garnishing ingredients.

The tasty garnishing ingredients including the Mexican cheese (queso fresco) really makes this dish.

I have found it either at local Mexican stores, Reams, or most other grocery stores.

Now roughly mince up the remainder of your onion, cilantro, and key limes (once again, regular limes will work as well, they just lack the distinct more potent taste of the key lime).

When you are ready for eating add the garnishing ingredients in the amounts as desired into your soup bowl (minus the diced limes, keep those aside and add the desired amount of fresh juice per taste)

Pour the hot brothy goodness on top of the garnishes then enjoy!

Jill's Pozole

2 chicken legs or 4 chicken thighs
3/4 cup diced onion
2 tablespoons olive oil or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon bottled garlic (or 2 crushed garlic cloves or 1 teaspoon garlic powder)
1 quart gluten free chicken broth
juice of 2 key limes or 1 regular lime
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
dash or two cayenne powder or red pepper flakes (if desired)
2 heaping tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
8 oz green chilies
about 2 cups worth of rinsed hominy (or desired amount)
salt and pepper to taste


Minced onions
Minced cilantro
Crumbled queso fresco
key limes

Grill up the chicken seasoned well with either salt and pepper or McCormicks Grill Mates Montreal Steak seasoning. Throw on the grill and cook thoroughly. Set aside and allow to cool.

Meanwhile, warm up the 2 tablespoons oil in a large soup pot. Add the onions and garlic and cook until onions are tender. Pour in chicken broth then stir in cumin, chili powder, cayenne or red pepper flakes, cilantro, and green chiles. Remove skin then shred the cooled cooked chicken and stir into the soup. Last, add the hominy and bring soup to a light simmer. 

While your soup is simmering, assemble the garnishing ingredients. After about 20 or so minutes the soup should be ready for your tummy. Add the garnishes in the bowl then pour the hot brothy soup on top. Squeeze some lime juice on top then enjoy.