Thursday, September 29, 2011

Refrigerator Pickled Jalapeno Peppers - Dairy and Gluten Free

I love to keep a jar of these quick pickled jalapeno peppers in the refrigerator.  They are naturally dairy and gluten free which is wonderful!  These jalapenos mellow as they marinate in the refrigerator.  The peppers themselves and the peppery vinegar are both great for adding a kick to your food.

Refrigerator Pickled Jalapeno Peppers

Fill a pint jar with fresh sliced jalapeno pepper rings.
In a bowl combine 2/3 cup white vinegar, 1/4 tsp salt, and 1/3 cup bottled water.
Pour the brine over the peppers.
Place a two piece lid on the jar and place in the refrigerator.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Dairy and Gluten Free Flavored Coffee Creamers

Finding a truly dairy free coffee creamer that doesn't contain the dreaded carrageenan or gluten and that actually tastes good while having the right texture has been a difficult journey.  However, I finally have broken the code thanks to Deliciously Organic!  I have tried both the Almond Joy and Cinnamon Streusel flavors so far and have found them to both be delightful.  Now that I have basically followed the recipes I plan on experimenting with flavor combinations.  I do feel that it is important to use the Thai Kitchen brand of full fat coconut milk when making these creamers as this brand is super thick and creamy which plays a role in producing a great end product.  Check out their post for Dairy Free Creamers here as there are a few other flavor options listed! 

From left to right:  Date Paste, Almond Joy Creamer, Cinnamon Streusel Creamer

Here is what I did using the basic directions from Deliciously Organic for Dairy Free Creamers to make 2 flavors of creamer from a single can of coconut milk.

Date Paste

8 oz package of pitted dates
1 1/4 cup hot water

Place the dates in the food processor and start it.
Stream in the hot water and continue to process until smooth.
Makes about 2 cups.

Almond Joy Dairy Free Creamer

1 cup Thai Kitchen coconut milk
1 1/2 tbs Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa Powder
6 tbs date paste
1/2 tsp almond extract

Heat the coconut milk and cocoa powder over medium heat until steaming.
Be sure to whisk the entire time to prevent scorching.
Take off the heat and whisk in the date paste and almond extract.
Strain through a fine wire sieve.
Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.
Makes about 1 1/2 cups.

Cinnamon Streusel Dairy Free Creamer

3/4 cup Thai Kitchen coconut milk (the remainder of the can)
5 tbs date paste
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 to 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon (depending on how much you like cinnamon)
1/2 tsp almond extract

Combine all ingredients and whisk well.
Strain through a fine wire sieve.
Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.
Makes about 1 1/4 cups.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Plum & Hoisin Pork Stir Fry with Rice Sticks - Dairy and Gluten Free

One of my good friends lives in Australia and is always talking about how she is making what she calls "lucky mince" which is made with ground pork and plum sauce.  Well, I finally found plum sauce here in the wilds of Wyoming and bought some ground pork.  I have to tell you that her lucky pantry combination of hoisin sauce and plum sauce is amazing!!  Keep in mind that the vegetables you add to this stir fry is completely up to you and what you like and/or have on hand.  This recipe reflects what I had available although I think that red bell peppers and snow peas would be amazing in this.  She says that they eat this over rice noodles or rice and even on toast!  I can see why too as the flavor combination is unexpected yet addictive.

Plum & Hoisin Pork Stir Fry with Rice Sticks

400 g Evergreen Jiangxi Rice Sticks
1 lb ground pork
2 tbs chopped garlic
2 tsp grated fresh ginger
2 medium sized mild red chile peppers, diced
1/2 cup sliced green onions
8 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced
8 oz can sliced water chestnuts, chopped
4 tbs Dynasty Hoisin Sauce (check that it is gluten free)
4 tbs Dynasty Plum Sauce (check that it is gluten free)
1 cup water

4 tbs sliced green onions, optional for garnish

Place a large pot of water on to boil.
Cook the rice sticks according to the package directions, or until tender.
Meanwhile, begin browning the ground pork in a large skillet.
Once the pork begins to brown add the garlic and ginger.
Continue cooking for a minute then add the chile peppers, green onions, and mushrooms.
Continue to cook until the pork and mushrooms are cooked through.
Add the water chestnuts, hoisin sauce, plum sauce, and water.
Reduce heat to simmer.
Add the cooked rice sticks and toss well to coat evenly with the sauce.
If it seems too dry add a little more water.
Simmer for at least 5 minutes or until most of the water is absorbed and the rice sticks are flavorful.
Serve with additional green onions on top if desired.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Canning: Green Chile Hot Sauce

I have to admit that I have an addiction to hot sauces.  It doesn't matter what color the sauce is so long as it is spicy and provides that pop of something special!  This Green Hot Sauce is so simple to make that you will wonder why you have been buying the store bought varieties.  I especially love that the spiciness and flavor of the sauce is completely dependent on what type of chile peppers you use.  Poblano peppers provide a fruity mild heat.  Anaheim chiles provide a mild heat.  Jalapeno peppers provide a moderate heat.  Serrano peppers provide a moderate to hot heat. 

Green Chile Hot Sauce
based on Green Hot Sauce
makes 2 cups or 2 half pint jars or 4 - 4 oz. jars 

1/2 lb green chile peppers
1 1/2 cup vinegar
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp sugar

Remove the stems and seeds from the chile peppers.
Combine the chile peppers, vinegar, salt, and sugar in a medium nonreactive pot.
Bring to a boil.
Boil for 5 minutes.
Cool slightly then puree using a blender.
Return sauce to the pot.
Cook sauce on medium high heat for 5 minutes.
Ladle hot sauce into hot sterilized jars leaving 1/2" headspace.
Wipe the rims of the jars.
Adjust hot sterilized two piece lids.
Process in a water bath for 10 minutes at sea level and adjust the processing time as necessary based on altitude.
Allow hot sauce to mature 2 months prior to using for best flavor.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Dairy and Gluten Free Two Bean Chili with Chicken and Cilantro

The weather here has turned cool and we have had our first killing frost.  In my opinion the perfect weather for making chili.  Today I made a Two Bean Chili with Chicken and Cilantro using ingredients that I had on hand.  I really like the brightness of flavor that the fresh cilantro adds to this dish.

1 medium onion, chopped 
3 medium mild red chile peppers, chopped 
3 cloves garlic, minced 
4 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cubed 
1 6 oz can Tomato Paste
2 tbs chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
1 28 oz can Crushed Tomatoes
1 cup water
1/2 tbs apple cider vinegar
2 tsp sugar
1 tbs soy sauce
3 tbs fresh cilantro, finely chopped
salt and pepper

In a medium saucepan saute the onions, peppers, garlic, and chicken thighs until the onions are tender and the chicken is lightly browned.
Add the tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, coriander, and smoked paprika saute for a minute.
Add the crushed tomatoes, water, apple cider vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, and cilantro.
Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer.
Simmer for at least 30 minutes; stirring often to prevent sticking.
Once the desired thickness has been reached taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Gluten Free Portabello Pizza with Goat Cheese

Portabello Pizzas are a quick and delicious pizza alternative that is naturally gluten free.  I love to load mine with pizza sauce, onions, bell peppers, pepperoni and creamy goat cheese.  However, these pizzas are great topped with whatever you like.

Portabello Pizza
for each pizza

1 portabello mushroom cap
1/4 cup pizza sauce
2 tbs chopped onion
2 tbs chopped bell pepper
4 slices turkey pepperoni, quartered
1/2 oz soft goat cheese
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Peel the outer layer off of the portabello (this outer layer can make the mushroom tough).
Using a spoon scoop out the gills and remove the stem taking care not to puncture the mushroom cap.
Bake the mushroom cap for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender.
Layer the sauce, desired toppings and cheese onto the mushroom cap.
Bake for 5 minutes or until the toppings are heated through.
Place under the broiler for a minute or so, watching carefully, until the cheese is melted and lightly browned.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Gluten and Dairy Free Creamy Coconut Almond Rice Noodles

This was another one of our attempts at a meatless dinner.  These Creamy Coconut Almond Rice Noodles are delicious whether served hot or cold.  The crunch that the bean sprouts add is a wonderful contrast to the soft noodles and creamy sauce.  Even my picky meat and potato loving husband loved this dish.  Feel free to adjust this recipe for what vegetables you have on hand or that you enjoy.  It also would be wonderful with some grilled chicken added if you are so inclined.

Creamy Coconut Almond Rice Noodles
4 oz wide rice noodles, cooked
1/2 tbs agave nectar
2 tbs natural almond butter
1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger
1 clove garlic, pressed
1/4 cup lite coconut milk
1 1/2 tbs gluten free soy sauce
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tbs fresh lime juice
1/2 medium red bell pepper, juliened
1/2 cup fresh bean sprouts
3 scallions, sliced on the bias

Cook the rice noodles according to package directions.
Meanwhile; in a small sauce pan combine the agave nectar, almond butter, ginger, garlic, coconut milk, soy sauce and cayenne.
Whisk over low heat to combine.
Simmer the sauce until slightly thickened.
Remove the sauce from the heat and finish with the lime juice.
Toss the cooked rice noodles with the red bell pepper, bean sprouts and half of the sliced scallions.
Combine the noodles and vegetables with the sauce.
Garnish with the remaining scallions.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Canning Pickled Peppers

We went to Miller Farms to pick vegetables recently.  It is a fantastic place to visit and actually be able to get out into the field and pick your own produce.  We picked potatoes, onions, leeks, turnips, red beets, golden beets, cabbages, various hot peppers, bell peppers, eggplants, and a watermelon!  With the bounty of hot peppers I have been canning and preserving them in a number of ways.  This is how I canned some pickled pepper rings...

Pickled Pepper Rings
based on this Pickled Hot Pepper recipe by Chiot's Run

2 lbs assorted colored hot peppers, sliced thinly - 1/4" thickness
6 cups vinegar
2 cups water
3 cloves of garlic, lightly cracked
1 tsp canning salt

In a medium nonreactive pot combine the peppers, vinegar, water, garlic & salt.
Bring it all to a boil.
Then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
Pack the hot peppers into pint sized hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space.
Ladle the hot pickling liquid over peppers, leaving 1/4-inch head space.
Be sure to remove any air bubbles.
Wipe the rims of the jars.
Fingertip tighten the 2 piece caps.
Water bath process for 10-minutes at sea level and adjust the processing time as necessary based on altitude.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Vegetable Coconut Green Curry with Rice Noodles - Dairy and Gluten Free

In addition to our typical dairy and gluten free lifestyle, my husband and I have been trying to eat vegetarian one night a week.  So far, I have liked the dishes but he has turned up his nose at them after a few bites.  I don't know why either of us think that he is going to like them considering that he basically hates vegetables.  Tonight was a vegetable green curry served atop a bed of rice noodles.

Vegetable Coconut Green Curry with Rice Noodles

14 oz rice sticks
14 oz can coconut milk
1 tbs green curry paste
3 tbs soy sauce (gluten free)
1 medium red onion, 1/4 moons
16 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium red bell pepper, matchsticks
1 medium heat level chile pepper, diced
14 oz frozen sugar snap peas, thawed
3 tbs chopped fresh cilantro

Cook the rice noodles.
Meanwhile in a small saucepan gently simmer the coconut milk, green curry paste and soy sauce.
In a skillet saute the onions until they are tender.
Add the mushrooms and continue to saute.
Once the mushrooms are lightly browned add the garlic, red bell pepper and chile pepper.
Continue to saute until the peppers are cooked to a tender crisp.
Add the sugar snap peas and heat through.
To serve layer rice noodles then sauted vegetables topped with the green curry sauce and garnished with the cilantro.