February 2010


As I mentioned in my last post, I have been awaiting an opportunity to try a number of recipes from Living Without Magazine.  I have had fresh pasta exactly twice since going Gluten-Free and both were delicious.  First, I had homemade corn pasta at Cafe DeVille in Edmonton, AB and second I had homemade rice pasta at Pagliacci’s in Victoria, BC ever since then, I have wanted to try and make my own.

I followed the instructions for Gluten-Free Handmade Pasta exactly as they are listed, using the flax seed egg replacement (so that I could share with my little man who doesn’t eat egg whites yet), however I didn’t have the patience to go over to my parents to borrow their pasta maker.  Instead, after reading a bunch of ravioli recipes, I decided to divide the dough and roll it out as thin as possible using a rolling pin between pieces of saran wrap.  This worked reasonably well, but I need a LOT of extra cornstarch to ensure the dough didn’t stick and to be able to transfer it to parchment paper.

I rolled each piece into an elongated rectangle and then placed 3-4 teaspoons of filling (depending how well I rolled the pasta) in a row along the pasta sheet, dabbed watered down egg yolk around each dollop of filling and then folded the dough over, gently pressing the dough together.  I did not use a fork or anything fancy to mark the edges, I just used my fingertips and the dough stayed together well through the cooking process.

The end result was delicious, if a bit chewy, however I’m pretty sure that if I had rolled my pasta thinner using a pasta machine that chewiness may not have been an issue.  I’m also positive that the ravioli was delicious and as good as I could have hoped for considering that it was my first attempt EVER to make pasta.  I did have to cook the pasta for a good 15 minutes, flipping the ravioli a few times, which is considerably longer than I expected based on the recipe citing the noodles would cook within a few minutes.

All in all, a good recipe and a delicious meal…and my little boy liked it too!!  Good luck making pasta, I hope yours also turns out great.

As for filling, I decided to make my own up, here’s what I used:

  • 1/2 pound lean ground turkey
  • ~3 oz of frozen chopped spinach (defrosted)
  • ~1/4 onion diced fine
  • 3/4 of a 500g package of feta cheese
  • 2 Tbsp goat cheese (optional)

Directions:

  1. Brown the turkey over medium heat, until no longer pink.
  2. Add onion and chopped spinach, and ook until the onions have softened and the turkey is fully cooked.
  3. Remove meat mixture from heat and stir in the cheeses (I had goat cheese on hand and it really helped hold everything together, you could also add one egg yolk.)
  4. Use to fill your homemade ravioli and enjoy!!

ps. I also used the leftover filling on a pizza!! Yum yum!

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A while back I discovered a copy of  “Living Without” magazine at my local London Drugs, I can’t always seem to find it, but when I do I always throw it in my basket and bring it home. Living Without is not just for us Gluten-Free folks, its for all of us who have to live without, whether your vice is dairy, soy, rice, corn, there seems to be a little bit of something for everyone.

The magazine included informative articles, including one on new research for Celiac’s Disease and an article for teens coping with Celiac’s.  The articles were well written and informative, the ads in the magazine all looked delicious and edible to me, not to mention the plethora of recipes, flour blends, egg substitutions and a substantial list of gluten-containing foods.

A couple of the recipes that caught my eye included:

  • GF Handmade pasta (this is what I used to make the ravioli I alluded to yesterday)
  • GF Soft Pretzels (mmm…this may have been one of my last gluten-full snacks back when I always felt sick)
  • GF Baguettes (Only two hours until I have a baguette in hand, sounds pretty good to me!)
  • GF Morning Pastries (I never really liked Pop Tarts, but these still have some appeal!)

Anyways, my point is, keep your eyes open and if you see LIVING WITHOUT Magazine have a quick peruse – personally, I was ecstatic to find a gluten-free magazine on my local store shelfs!

I have to admit, I’m dissapointed by my bread-making endeavour.  I can’t say with certainty however, that my failure is a result of the recipe, in fact I highly doubt that is the case.  You see when the timer beeped, indicating I should check on the bread, check the internal temperature, feel and sound, I was upstairs putting the baby to bed.

My sister kindly turned off the timer and removed the bread from the oven.  By the time I emerged 15 minutes later, it was too late to put the bread back in the oven and so I waited, unsure exactly what the result was going to be.

The bread was dense, a bit moist in the middle and now, a day later its a bit like a rock.  I’m still going to try making pizza with the other half of the dough, and should that turn out, I will likely try the bread again.  I know its not the recipes fault, but I can’t help feeling sad about the whole debacle.  On the plus-side, I made gluten-free ravioli today for the first time and I think it turned out quite well – more on that later!

I have made many loaves of Gluten-Free bread over the last few years, a few flops and a few successes, though none have been spectactular. None have blown my socks off and given me the flavour and texture that I was really hoping for; the flavour and texture of delicious gluten that is.

Once I discovered the absolutely delicious potato bread from the 6th Ave Bread and Deli, I stopped making bread. I’m pretty sure I haven’t made gluten-free bread in close to a year; I just haven’t seen a recipe that sparked my interest enough to be worth making, when I could just eat the stockpile of Potato bread I regularly keep in my freezer.

This weekend, I found Shauna’s post on Gluten-Free Crusty Boule Bread, and it looks delicious and easy to make. This recipe is from the new book “Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day” which apparently has an entire gluten-free section, all of which is touted to be delicious. The recipe can also be found on the Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day Blog complete with pictures of each step (note that the recipe is doubled compared to Shauna’s on ABin5).  The recipe recommends a dutch oven (which I don’t have), so I am going to try the preheated pizza stone method (as described in Shauna’s post).

Now Shauna’s praise and pictures MAY have been enough to win me over, but the promise that the dough can be kept in the fridge for a week and can be used to make pizza crust, naan and even pitas. Now I had to try this bread.

I’m making a half batch (Shauna’s quantities), and am planning on a loaf of bread and some pizza. I do love my GF yeast free pizza crust, but the pictures (and comments) on the ABin5 blog practically made me drool with anticipation. I’m not sure what toppings will be going on the pizza, but at least I know I’ll have a week to make it, so there’s no need to rush (though I anticipate pizza on the menu for tomorrow!!).

For the record, I was able to throw this recipe together and wash up the dishes in about 10 minutes (seriously super fast), which is likely to be a very positive feature of this recipe if it lives up to the hype.  Mommy’s going back to work and time is going to become even more of a hot commodity.

The bread is rising as we speak – I’m so excited!
Happy Baking.

Although I have been finding myself inspired to cook a lot lately, it has primarily been for my little guy who eats like a horse. He wants to feed himself more and more, but I also want to make sure that he is getting enough nutrition and well-balanced meals. I recently discovered Weelicious, which is an amazing website full of great recipes and food ideas, many of which are naturally gluten-free.

I made a variation on this Red Lentil Puree, omitting the salt, using only curry powder for spice and using carrot puree from my freezer that Cole won’t eat on its own and it has already become a quick favourite around our house. I wasn’t sure if he would go for the curry taste, but I need not have worried!

I made some Edamame Hummus, which was delicious and Cole didn’t seem to mind, however when she says one SMALL garlic clove, I should have paid more attention. I used a large one and it turned out a bit more garlicky than intended – I think I might try a half a clove next time.

I made Creamy Rice Pudding, but opted to make it in the rice cooker instead of on the stove. I used 1/2 a cup of coconut milk (I had leftover from a marinade) and 3 cups of rice milk instead of regular milk and added a 1/4 tsp of cinnamon while the rice was cooking. It turned out delicious and tasty, though I think it may still be a bit thick for Cole’s liking. This morning I thinned it out with some mashed bananas and a little bit of formula and Cole happily gobbled it up! I’m also keeping the Leftover Rice Pudding recipe on hand, as I’m sure it will come in useful sometime in the near future.

Other Weelicious Recipes I want to try out soon include: