It’s a good day for soup…

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It is so cold out today and I am home with a sick little one..so what does one do on those kind of days?  Make some yummy soup.

The other day I made a beef chuck roast.  I always add fresh carrots, 1 whole onion sliced, salt and pepper, a small amount of red wine and very little water when I make a roast.  Slow cook it in the oven at 350 for about 2 hours.

Making this beef vegetable soup is a great way to use up those leftovers from the roast.

I took the leftovers from that veggies, broth and roast and I added a can of crushed tomatoes, about 1/4 cup of red wine, one small bag of frozen mixed vegetables.   I use the one that has corn, carrots, green beans, peas and Lima beans.  If you have extra stock in your frig add that as well, I had chicken stock so I used that, and a nice sized bay leaf.  Let this slow cook about 1 hour over a low heat on top of the stove, salt and pepper to flavor and enjoy!

Hope this soup warms you up on this chilly day.

As always enjoy the day!  Jane

Jeremiah 29:11

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Cold weather and comfort food….

I don’t know of many people who would turn away comfort food when it gets cold outside.  Heck I like comfort food anytime really.  It’s been so cold here in these parts lately that venturing outside is very short lived.

What do you do when temperatures dip way down?   I go for a good movie, comfy blanket and a bowl of meatballs and penne, why not?  DSC_0188

I like to bake meatballs in the oven at 350F till they are nice and brown.  As for the sauce, I make mine by taking a good can of crushed tomatoes and add olive oil, herbs (that I have on hand) garlic and let it slow cook on top of the stove, makes the whole house smell wonderful!    Once the sauce and meatballs are done I mix them together and then back into the oven they go at 350F for about 15 minutes just enough for everything to get happy.  I serve that with a nice leafy green salad.

For the meatballs you’ll need:

1 lb. of hamburger

1 lb. of Mild Italian sausage

1 teaspoon of basil, garlic and Parmesan cheese

1 Egg

Salt and pepper as you like

Mix together well and roll into meatballs whatever size you prefer then place into a baking dish and bake at 350F for about 45 minutes.

Meanwhile on top of the stove use a good sized sauce pan  into the pan pour 2- 28 oz. cans of a good crushed tomato.  Into the sauce put 1 teaspoon of basil, garlic and olive oil.  You can always add other herbs that you like.  I also add about 2 Tablespoons of whatever red wine I have at the house.  And let this simmer away.

DSC_0193Just to give you a little idea of the temperature outside here’s a picture of our pond.  It used to have running water.  That now is frozen solid as is our entire pond, yikes!

DSC_0153What ever weather your experiencing this winter stay warm, comfy and share your days with loved ones.

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Snow days and Burrito bowls….

Today here in the northeast they are calling for a descent sized snow storm.  I don’t know about you but I love snow days.  It’s a reason to just stay home cozy up with the family,cook some good food, play and just relax.  Unfortunately my daughter has started back to school after the Christmas break  and my husband Mark is at work.

My son Ty, a college kid, is home on break but he is still in bed and probably won’t make an appearance before noon oh to have a kids life…some days ha ha.    So that leaves me to do what I love.. cook.

For me Chipotle Mexican Grill is one of my favorites as is my sons.  Whenever we are out and about for the day we will stop in for a bite, it’s so good. They have lots of gluten free options that makes me so happy.  Here’s their site if you’d like to check them out http://www.chipotle.com  That being said I thought I would try to recreate their burrito bowl for dinner today.

So before the snow has started I put my chicken breast into the crock pot with two packets of McCormick taco seasoning, mix it all around really good.  Cook for about 6 hours I put the setting on high.  On the side I will prepare brown rice according to the package directions mixed with about 3 Tablespoons of cilantro and 2 Tablespoons of lime juice.  Then for toppings we will have black beans, salsa, sour cream,cheese, 2 scallions cut up and guacamole oh I can hardly wait!  Here’s the finished product.  The top one has guacamole and cheese.  The bottom one does not.   It’s so easy to prepare and is such a wonderful comfort food…as always hope you enjoy!

Chicken Mexican dish Chicken Mexican dish 1

Gluten Free General Tso’s Chicken

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Gluten Free General Tso’s Chicken

 What you’ll need:

2 pounds of boneless skinless chicken breast (cut into bite size pieces)

2 egg whites

6 Tablespoons of Corn Starch (make sure it’s gluten free)

Vegetable oil

¼ cup of gluten free soy sauce

2 Tablespoons of Sambal (you can find this at any Asian market place) Image

2 Tablespoons of honey

2 Tablespoons of orange juice

1 Tablespoon of Sesame oil

2 Tablespoons of fresh grated ginger

2 Red bell peppers

1 ½ bunches of scallions

3 carrots thinly sliced

3 garlic cloves

1 Tablespoon of black sesame seeds (optional you can also find this at any Asian market)

1 package of gluten free spaghetti or brown rice

 

 

Directions:

 Beat egg whites and cornstarch till smooth in a large bowl.  Put chicken into bowl and mix till thoroughly coated.

You can either deep fry this or sauté.   If your deep-frying pour about a half of bottle of vegetable oil into a deep pan and add a little of the chicken at a time till it’s golden brown and cooked completely through.  Or if you sauté then cook the chicken till it’s crispy and brown if you use this method you will only need about 3-4 Tablespoons of vegetable oil.

Place chicken unto a paper towel and set to the side when done frying or sauté.

Next sauté the garlic and ginger just lightly till it becomes fragrant.  Add the rest of the vegetables and slightly sauté. 

Next mix the soy sauce, Sambal, honey, orange juice, sesame oil and pour into pan with vegetables.  Sauce will slightly thicken. (I double this mixture when serving with brown rice or pasta.)  

Place chicken into this mixture just to coat well and bring back up to temperature.

Pour mixture over cooked gluten free pasta or brown rice (or serve pasta or rice on the side) 

Cook gluten free pasta or brown rice according to package directions.

Notes:  I double my sauce ingredients when serving with brown rice or pasta.

*Adapted from Daphne Oz recipe

This Weekend April 26-27

The Gluten Free Clan will be over at Healthy Habits Natural Market in Orwigsburg, PA this Friday evening April 26th.Healthy Habits Natural Market  This is a free event there will be Live Music, Great Company and Paleo, Gluten Free, and Vegan Treats!

This event will run from 6:00pm until 7:00pm.  So if your out and about stop by for some great snacks and some wonderful fellowship.

And then on Saturday April 27th from 11:00 a.m.- 6:00 p.m.

Join us at Christ Church McKeansburg For Their Famous Chicken BBQ

751 Chestnut St, New Ringgold, Pennsylvania 17960

christ church

Meal includes 1/2 of a chicken, Baked Potato, Pepper cabbage, Apple Sauce and drink, make sure to ask for your meal WITHOUT THE ROLL to keep it gluten free.  

Everything is home made by the good folks of Christ Church McKeansburg.
Cost for Adult Platter is: $8 Child Platter is: $4
Eat in or Take out
There will also be a lot of different homemade desserts to choose from for your sweet tooth, including
  gluten free ones.
If you would like to purchase tickets in advance please call 570-943-2822 we sell out fast!

 Proceeds help families in need. Come and join us for the Fellowship!

Matthew 25

Fresh Market Salad

Fresh Market SaladCan’t wait for this time of year, it really isn’t that far away!

I think this year I am going to plant my garden a little different to include some of these goodies 🙂

Fresh Market Salad

1 cup Fresh Green beans
1 Scallion
1 tbsp Cilantro
Juice of 1 Lime and 1/2 tsp.zest
Sea Salt 1/8 tsp.
Grape Tomatoes seeded about 8
Red and yellow peppers 1 each
Gluten Free Penne 1 box
Olive Oil 1 1/2  tablespoon

Boil Water enough to cover fresh green beans leave in boiling water only for 1 minute they will become a bright green. Remove the green beans and let them become cool.  (You can use fresh asparagus as well)  Next cut up all ingredients to small bite size pieces and mix with minced cilantro, lime zest, lime juice, salt and olive oil.  This year I have really learned to appreciate the benefits of Kale.  I would even add a 1/2 cup of Kale to this yummy salad if your looking for some great health benefits.
Enjoy!

Chicken with Spicy Szechuan Peanut Sauce and Noodles

Chinese Szechuan Peanut Sauce and Noodles

One thing that I really miss about being gluten free is being able to go out and eat at a local Chinese restaurant with the family.  Where I live there isn’t one restaurant that would cater to folks with Celiac disease.

So what I do is play with flavors here at home.   What I have come up with is a pretty tasty meal.   I call it Spicy Szechuan Peanut sauce and noodles.  You can add to it whatever your hungry for.  This night I did chicken breast and a Chinese vegetable stir fry that you can pick up in your local grocers frozen section.

If you’d like to give it a try this is what you will need:

2 whole chicken breast with the bone and skin

1 large bag of your favorite stir fry vegetable mix from the frozen section at the grocery store

1 cup of natural creamy peanut butter by JIF

1 package of gluten free spaghetti noodles

3 Tablespoons Gluten Free Tamari soy sauce

2 Teaspoons of Szechuan hot and spicy gluten free sauce (found at Weis grocery store)

1 Tsp. of dried ginger powder

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/2 Tsp. garlic powder

1 Tsp. of honey

1/8 Tsp. Lemon Zest

1/2 cup of Peanuts to top off with

Preheat oven to 350F In a roasting pan take the two whole chicken breast season with some  Tamari sauce about (1 Tablespoon this is extra) bake 45 minutes covered.  Once done and cooked through let cool down completely and then remove the meat from the bone and take the skin off and set to the side make sure you reserve the drippings and discard the bones and skin.

Start boiling your water for pasta and follow directions on package.

In a separate pan combine the peanut butter, Tamari sauce, Szechuan Hot and Spicy sauce, Dried ginger, 1/2 cup of vegetable oil, garlic powder, honey and lemon zest.  Keep heat on low and mix till well incorporated and melt all together.  The sauce will darken.

Next heat separate pan for frozen vegetables with 1 Tablespoon of water ( I add a dash of powdered ginger and some Tamari sauce to flavor)cook till still very crispy, watch it doesn’t take long.  Drain off vegetables

Toss together cooked chicken breast, drippings, vegetables,peanut sauce and pasta.  Put into your favorite serving dish and Top off with peanuts for crunch.

*If your taste likes a hotter sauce add a pinch of dried pepper flakes with the peanut sauce.

I hope you enjoy

Lots of Love, Jane

Jeremiah 29:11

Garlic Chicken Broiled….

broiled garlic chicken

Good Morning!  Last night we had a wonderful chicken dinner. Tyler found an awesome recipe and modified it to be gluten free.  So if your thinking of having chicken for dinner tonight but aren’t sure how you want to make it, how many times have we all been there?   I suggest using this recipe, it’s easy inexpensive and so good!  Here is what you will need.

1/2 cup of butter
3 Tablespoons of minced garlic
3 Tablespoons of gluten free soy sauce we use Eden organic Tamari soy sauce (you can find this at Healthy Habits is Orwigsburg) I’m sure other places carry it. or La Choy Soy Sauce is gluten free
1/4 Teaspoon of black pepper
1 Tablespoon of parsley
6 boneless chicken thighs with skin (we used chicken breast with skin, that’s what we had)

Directions

Preheat the oven broiler our settings are low and high we kept ours on low Lightly grease a baking pan.
In a microwave safe bowl, mix the butter, garlic, soy sauce, pepper, and parsley. Cook 2 minutes on High in the microwave, or until butter is melted.
Arrange chicken on the baking pan, and coat with the butter mixture, reserving some of the mixture for basting.
Broil chicken 20 minutes in the preheated oven, until juices run clear, ours took longer because of the full chicken breast we had.  Keep turning it frequently while basting with remaining butter mixture.

Sprinkle with parsley to serve. We served this with mashed red skinned potatoes and sweet corn.   This is surely one of our new favorites, I’d love to hear how it turns out for you and if it becomes one of your new favorites 🙂

Gluten Free Beef and Spinach Low Mein

 Last night for dinner, I wanted to make something a little different. With Thanksgiving right around the corner.   I was wanting to stay away from a traditional dish.  
 I am looking so forward to next Thursday when we will be celebrating with family and yes there will be lots of goodies to feast on and my contribution of gluten free ones.

 So in the frig. I had some roast beef left over from an early meal in the week.  Also I had some spinach in the freezer, soon my wheels started turning and I found my mind and my appetite drifting towards Chinese.

As I searched my pantry I realized I had some Quinoa pasta that could be used as Low Mein.  I like using quinoa pasta in many dishes it holds up pretty well and doesn’t fall apart.  Plus I think it is more nutritional.

Then I started looking in my spice shelf and I came across some dried ginger.  Mmm sounds like a meal coming together to me.

 Do you cook with ginger?   I love the smell and the flavor that ginger adds to a dish.
If you have never tried it before, ginger adds a fresh flavor and a different level of spiciness to a dish.  It is strong so a little goes a long way.  Remember you can always add but you can’t take out.

 I like to use hot,spicy and sweet in my Chinese dishes. 
This product works very well in many of them. 
I found this at Weiss grocery market.

When we were in China the Szechuan food that we ate was very spicy and so good, nothing like you can find here in the states.  If you can you are very fortunate.   And please share with us where they are!

When I use this sauce it always reminds me of our trip to bring our Jenna home. 
I can hardly believe that it is almost 7 years. I just want to say that if you are looking to start a family and are considering  adoption, all I can say from our experience is that it is an amazing journey and one I am so blessed to be part of as a Mommy. Just putting that out there.  Love, love my girl and yes she is a spicy one, LOL.

 When using the Szechuan hot and spicy sauce I always add,
believe it or not, ketchup.  By adding this it adds a sweet and tart flavor that really compliments the sauce.
It also cuts back on the heat of the sauce so if you like it not so  spicy add more ketchup and less Szechuan sauce or if you like it spicy add more Szechuan sauce and less ketchup,easy peasy!
And as for having ketchup in your frig,who doesn’t have ketchup in their frig right? 

For us our Jenna loves ketchup so much that she would eat it more of a side dish than a condiment.  So we are always well stocked!

 Here is the final dish I hope you enjoy it and experiment with it, make it your own…..
You could always use chicken in it instead of the beef or do both, you could even add shrimp if you’d like.
 As for the  vegetables you could add many more like carrots, sugar snaps, water chestnuts, broccoli, red peppers, onions.  You get the picture. 
As for me this is what I had at home last night so goes the dish!

Recipe for Beef and Spinach Low Mein
1 lb. of left over roast beef or steak
2 Tablespoon of olive oil or vegetable oil
1 teaspoon of salt
1 12 oz. package of frozen spinach
1/4 cup Szechuan sauce (taste it first to check your tolerance for the heat)  You can add less if you like.
1 cup of ketchup
1 package of Quinoa gluten free pasta
1 teaspoon of ground ginger (start with that and see how your taste buds react to the dish I usually end up adding more but I love ginger)

Directions
Heat up a large pan or wok over medium heat.  Add vegetable or olive oil to it.  Next add the beef and salt.  Let that heat up together.  Next add the frozen spinach and cook a couple of minutes till the spinach is about half way cooked.  Next, add the Szechuan sauce and ketchup ( I put them together in a small bowl and mix it first them add the sauce to the pan) If you find you don’t have enough sauce for the dish just mix up another batch.  I like more sauce in my dish so I made a little extra myself.  It all depends on your taste.
While you are cooking all this start a large pot with boiling water and cook your quinoa pasta according to the directions.  When the pasta is done add it to the pan and mix well if it seems a little dry I always reserve some pasta water and add a tiny bit to the dish.  Last I add the ground ginger, mix well and then you are ready to serve.
As always enjoy!

Isaiah 40:31

Mmm.. It’s a Soup Kind of Day!

I love soup on chilly days, just the smell coming from the kitchen as the pot simmers all the wonderful flavors together. Also the warmth it gives to the soul as you snuggle with a warm bowl on the couch reading to your little one or just catching some time to yourself,oh it’s all good!
This Fall for our area has just been one rainy day after another, it makes me wonder what will our winter be like?  This to me is the perfect soup making weather.
One of my favorite soups to make is either chicken noodle or chicken rice simple but so yummy.  So since I had brown rice in the pantry chicken rice it is.
I like a lot of carrots in my soup so I  cut up an entire bag (from the grocery store) into 1/2 inch pieces
5 stalks of celery
1 whole big onion
2 cloves of garlic
3 teaspoons of thyme
4 chicken thighs with the skin and bone
a little drizzle of olive oil to start the process in the very bottom of the pot
1 tsp. of sea salt
1 tsp. of cracked pepper
water to cover it all ( and 3 more inches above that)
2 cups of brown rice
1/4 cup of fresh parsley
2 tsp. of minced chives
I start by adding the olive oil to the pot then add all the vegetables and some salt and pepper let simmer on low to medium heat about 10 minutes.
Next I add the meat skin side down salt and pepper.
Add the Thyme
cover with the water
let simmer about 1/2 hour
then I add the rice to the pot let that cook for another 20 minutes
after that remove the chicken and De bone.
 return the chicken to the pot and add the parsley and chives
Cook for about another 5 minutes and then your ready to bowl up enjoy!
Romans 3:22