Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category

Baking Challenge #1: Saltines

May 23, 2009

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So one thing I’m learning from this venture is that if you’re going to be a good food blogger, you have to have mad food photography skillz.  I don’t know so much that I have them.  But this is my first attempt with a camera that is on the verge of falling apart.  And it wasn’t even in food mode.

I decided that my first gluten free baking challenge would be to make crackers.  Why?  Because I do a lot of carb snacking. I love appetizers.  Store bought gluten free crackers are expensive, and I’m still hitting full on sticker shock over how much money eating gluten free costs.  I used the saltine cracker recipe from my first GF cookbook purchase, Elizabeth Barbone’s new book Easy Gluten Free Baking.  Her saltine recipe comes from the “Tastes Like” chapter (which also includes recipes for GF Girl Scout cookies!), and is slightly less complicated and has less ingredients than the Saltine Cracker Recipe from Learning How To Cook…Gluten Free!

I also reasoned that a GF cracker recipe should not be so hard, since most GF bread products get or are inherently crumbly. The instructions are pretty easy:  mix flour blend and butter together, roll it out, prick with a fork, cut and bake.  Much like instructions for a pie crust.

Do they taste like saltines?  If you close your eyes and concentrate on the butter flavor, yes.  Otherwise, they taste like a good sugarless shortbread or tart crust.  They stood up to a spreading of thick heavy cheese spread without breaking.  I think next time that instead of just cutting into squares, I might try using cookie cutters to make them look like a canapé type cracker.  Just to be fancy.  I’m also excited to try the cheese cracker recipe from this book.  I have a feeling that if the texture of the cheese cracker recipe is similar to the saltine recipe, it will lend itself well to a cheese cracker.

Any other favorite cracker recipes out there?

GF Recipe: Blackened Shrimp with Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Andouille Cream

May 7, 2009

Along with the results of my biopsy confirming celiac, blood tests showed that my Vitamin A levels were borderline low. Possible pesky malabsorption? To boost my Vitamin A, the doctor suggested I eat orange things like sweet potatoes.  Hence the recipe I’m about to share with you.

As most celiacs probably know, and as I’m finding out, grocery shopping has become a big pain in the ass, something I shall blog about sometime in the near future. Nonetheless, I found this yummy (gluten free!) recipe, which pleased both my need for Vitamin A and my husband, who is a New Orleans native.  Enjoy!

Blackened Shrimp with Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Andouille Cream (via Big Oven’s iPhone app):

Mashed Sweet Potatoes:

Andouille Cream:

Shrimp:

Instructions

For the sweet potatoes:

In a one-gallon saucepot, add the potatoes and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook until fork tender. When cooked, strain potatoes. In a large bowl, while potatoes are still hot, add honey, butter, cinnamon, salt, and pepper. Mash together and reserve on stovetop with low heat.

For the andouille cream:

In a large saute pan with the olive oil, sweat the garlic and shallots. Add the celery and saute for one minute. Add the white wine, sausage, and thyme. Reduce for about one minute to half. Add heavy cream and reduce mixture by half again. Stir in Cajun seasoning and butter, saute for one minute. Stir in parsley and season. Be sure to remove thyme sprig before serving. Reserve on stovetop with low heat.

For the shrimp:

Dredge shrimp in blackening spice. Season each side of the shrimp with salt and ground black pepper. In a hot saute pan with olive oil, pan sear shrimp. Be sure not to burn the blackening spice, or it will turn very bitter in taste.

For the presentation:

Spoon the potatoes in the center of a serving plate. Then stand three shrimp on the potatoes, with the tails in on top. Lastly, spoon a portion of the andouille cream on top of the shrimp and potatoes.