Turkey Burgers | gluten-free, egg-free

Turkey Burgers | Gluten-free, Egg-free

I know it’s only October, but I’m already thinking about turkey. The problem though, is that it has been unseasonably hot here in Southern California — it feels like the middle of summer, not fall. So tonight I decided to make turkey burgers on the grill, instead of turkey roasted in the oven.

The trick when making turkey burgers from scratch, especially when you are avoiding eggs, is to figure out how to get everything to stick together. Enter the fabulous hamburger press that I got as a gift:

Hamburger PressIt forms the patty well, and compresses everything in such a way that the burgers holds up on the grill. It’s one of my favorite kitchen tools.

This recipe is a modified version of a recipe I found in one of my favorite gluten-free cookbooks (click here to see it on Amazon):

I modified it based on what I had on hand and personal preferences. I hope you enjoy my version as much as we did!

Gluten- free, Egg-free Turkey Burgers

Ingredients
1-1 1/2 lbs organic ground turkey
1 cup fresh organic spinach chopped
1/2 cup red onion finely chopped
1 tbsp dried parsley
1 tbsp dried basil
1 Tbsp The Pepper Plant Chunky Garlic Hot Pepper Sauce (don’t worry, it’s not that spicy)
1 teaspoon Real Salt, Nature’s First Sea Salt
Ground pepper to taste

Directions
Combine all the ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.

Turkey Burgers | Gluten-free, Egg-free

Use your hands to gently mix the meat mixture until everything is incorporated.

Divide the meat into quarters in the bowl. Take one quarter of the meat and shape into patties using the hamburger press.

Hamburger press

Turkey Burgers | Gluten-free, Egg-free

Turkey Burgers | Gluten-free, Egg-free

Grill 5 to 7 minutes per side until no longer pink.

Serve onUdi’s Gluten Free Whole Grain Hamburger Buns*, top with your favorite toppings and add your favorite sides.

*Note: Udi’s hamburger buns do contain egg whites. So if you need to strictly avoid egg, consider lettuce wrapping your burger instead.

 

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Gluten-free, Casein-free, Egg-free Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

Gluten-free, Casein-free, Egg-free Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

I’m not gonna lie — I have a sweet tooth. Add chocolate chips to ANYTHING and I’m in. I know that there are banana bread “purists” who wouldn’t dream of adding chocolate to their recipe but I’m not one of those.

Ironically, since being gluten-free, I have stopped craving sweet treats to the extent that I used to. Gluten has it’s addictive qualities and you can learn more about that by perusing this site. However, once you ween yourself off, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how little you actually crave sweet treats. Even my boys, who traditionally loved sweet treats, comment about how their old favorites are too sweet now!

Once, when we were not as strict about being gluten-free, I allowed my son to pick a donut from the box at his classroom party. Well, of course, he picked a donut the size of his head! He took a few bites and then set it down on his plate. When I inquired about why he wasn’t eating it, he said it was just too sweet and it didn’t taste good!

The lesson? Your taste buds can be trained to like, even prefer, other flavors and levels of sweetness and seasonings.

I also believe that once you remove gluten and other irritants from your diet, that your system starts to process sugar differently. As a result, cravings and tastes change. And that is a good thing.  The less sugar we ingest, the healthier we are, on many fronts.

Here is the recipe many of you have been waiting for. I’ll post notes at the end. Please read through the recipe and notes before attempting to make this bread so that you can modify to suit your needs. Enjoy!

Gluten-free, Casein-free, Egg-free Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

Gluten-free, Casein-free, Egg-free Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour (I used King Arthur brand for this recipe)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup ghee, or clarified butter
2/3 cup Organic Turbinado Sugar
4 Tablespoons Arrowroot Starch/Flour
1/4 cup of water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

One cup mashed very ripe bananas
1 (6 ounce) container of non-dairy vanilla yogurt

3/4 cups gluten-free, dairy free chocolate chips (for example, Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Chocolate Mini Chips)

Directions

Heat the oven to 350º. Prepare a loaf pan with the oil spray of your choice and set the pan aside.

Peel the bananas and place them in a bowl. Mash them with a fork or a potato masher and measure out 1 cup. Add the non-dairy yogurt and stir to blend. Set the bowl aside.

Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.

In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to combine the ghee and sugar, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add the arrowroot, water and the vanilla extract and combine well.

Using a rubber spatula, blend a third of the dry mixture into the ghee-sugar mixture. Add the rest of the ingredients in this order, stirring well after each addition: half of the banana mixture, half of the remaining dry mixture, the rest of the banana mixture, the rest of the dry mixture. Next, fold in the chocolate chips.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a spoon. Bake on the center oven rack until a tester toothpick inserted deep into the center of the bread comes out clean, about 50-60 minutes.

Transfer the bread to a cooling rack and cool it in the pan for about 20 minutes. Remove the bread from the pan and place it on the rack. Allow the bread to cool thoroughly before slicing (if you can wait that long!).

Notes:

-  I have added more than a cup of mashed bananas to this recipe and it is still divine.

-  Because we try to avoid eggs. I used the arrowroot starch in place of eggs. If you can’t find arrowroot starch, then use eggs! You will use 2 eggs and omit the arrowroot starch and 1/4 cup of water.

-  You can buy arrowroot starch at any health food store but also check your local grocer. I have seen it there before as well.

-  Because ovens can vary, see how the bread comes out at 350º. If it doesn’t bake right, next time, try baking it at 325º for 70-75 minutes. I’ve done it both ways and have had it be successful both times in my oven.

 

Ok, off you go! Go make the bread…then come back and tell me how it was. I’m dying to hear from you!

 

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Breakfast idea: Gluten-free Maple Pecan Cereal Pie

Gluten-free Maple Pecan Cereal Pie

When people find out that our family is gluten-free, dairy-free and predominately egg-free, the most common question I get asked is “What do you guys eat for breakfast?!”

Gluten, dairy and eggs are ubiquitous in our standard American breakfast. So it’s no wonder that going gluten-free and dairy-free can seem daunting to so many people.

I have to admit that initially it did take a little bit of extra thought in planning my family’s breakfast schedule.
But now I try to get creative and think outside the box. Sometimes, I will even serve dinner’s leftovers for breakfast. After all who made up the rule that says you can’t eat certain foods for breakfast?!

In other countries people eat all kinds of things for breakfast. In Italy, for example, it is not uncommon for people to eat lunch meat with their breakfast. And in Asian countries, rice is a breakfast staple. So I’ve learned to get creative and think outside of the box.

But that’s not what this recipe is about! This recipe was just me figuring out how to get creative with our beloved oatmeal.

Sometimes just changing the presentation can make something old seem new! So that’s what I’ve done here — I created a baked oatmeal and served it in a pie dish.
It was fun to pull out of the oven (not to mention how delicious it smells coming out) and have the boys think they were getting dessert for breakfast!

There are so many ways you can alter the flavor of this oatmeal. I’d love to hear what you tried. Let me know in the comments section how you changed it up! Enjoy!

Gluten-free Maple Pecan Cereal Pie

 

Maple Pecan Cereal Pie

Ingredients

2 cups water
1 cup Gluten-Free Organic Rolled Oats
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 spoon salt
2 tablespoon Flaxseed Meal
2 bananas, sliced
1/2 cup pecans, chopped

1/4 cup of rice milk
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Preheat oven to 400°F. Bring 2 cups water to a boil. Stir in oats, cinnamon, and salt. Stir and simmer until tender about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, add flaxseed meal and combine well.

While the oats are cooking, line a 9-inch pie plate with 1 sliced banana. Reserve the second sliced banana for the topping.

Return to the oatmeal- stir in rice milk, maple syrup, and vanilla.

Spread this mixture into the banana-lined pie dish. Top with remaining sliced bananas and the pecans.

Bake uncovered until browned, 20-25 minutes. Let cool and solidify for 5-7 minutes. Slice and serve.

Save leftovers by covering the pie dish and storing in the fridge. To eat after it’s been stored in the fridge, slice a pie-shaped serving and heat in the microwave.

Enjoy!

 

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Slow Cooker Kalua pork

Slow Cooker Kalua Pork

I love Hawaii! Seriously, whenever I go there for vacation, I slip into a serious depression on my last night. I hate to leave the sunshine, cool ocean breezes, their relaxed “island style” and definitely their food.

In particular, their Kalua Pork is so succulent and flavorful. And they put it on everything! Last time I was there I had Kalua Pork Nachos! Wow — they were amazing!

Well, some days I crave a little taste of Hawaii so I venture into making Kalua Pork. Now the traditional recipe calls for a slow roast with liquid smoke and pork wrapped in banana leaves.

Some days I’m just not that ambitious, plus where the heck do you find banana leaves?!

So, I break out my slow cooker, simplify the recipe and then enjoy the taste of the islands.

Here’s my recipe, let me know what you think!

Slow Cooker Kalua Pork

Slow Cooker Kalua Pork

3 slices of prosciutto
5 pounds of pork shoulder
2/3 cup pineapple juice
Sea salt

Directions

Line your slow cooker with the slices of prosciutto.

Prosciutto | Slow Coooker

Place the pork shoulder on top of the prosciutto. Pour the pineapple juice over the pork. Liberally coat the pork with sea salt. Don’t be afraid of the salt. It flavors the pork beautifully and balances out the sweetness of the pineapple juice.

Pork Shoulder | Slow Cooker

Set your slow cooker on low and cook for 6 to 8 hours.

Remove the meat and set on a cutting board. Shred the meat with a couple of forks and adjust the seasoning with some of the remaining cooking liquid or more salt as needed.

Once the pork is seasoned to your liking, drain the remaining liquid from the pot and return the meat to the slow cooker to keep it warm until you’re ready to serve it.

 

What do you serve on the side? Well, I made this delish coconut mango black rice.

 

Coconut Mango Black Rice

 

I’ll post the recipe to that soon. Check back in the next week or two- or better yet, sign up to receive the recipe in your inbox. Enjoy!

Gluten-free, Dairy-free Chocolate Coconut Cookie Shake

Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Chocolate Coconut Cookie Shake

We decided to drive through In ‘n Out today after church to grab a quick lunch. I was thankful because I was feeling a little under the weather and didn’t feel like making a big lunch at home. Plus, we’ve learned to love their “protein-style” burgers (this basically means same burger, but wrapped in lettuce instead of a bun). Even my husband who doesn’t have to be gluten-free actually prefers his burger “protein-style” now as well.

The problem though, is that In ‘n Out makes delicious chocolate shakes as well. They are very hard to resist. Of course, my son asked if he could have one since it had been “ages” since he’d had a shake. I promptly reminded him that he had a protein shake with breakfast this morning…how quickly they forget.  But I felt for him, the cold, chocolate creaminess was enticing me as well.

Then I remembered that I had a collection of items at home that I could use to make us a comparable, gluten-free, dairy-free chocolate shake. I proposed the solution. He hesitantly accepted and even agreed to help me make it. (Spoiler alert: both he and his brother loved it…)

We went to our fridge and cupboard and assembled the players charged with making us a frosty treat. Here is the line-up:

Trader Joe's Gluten-free, Dairy-free

Trader Joe’s has been fantastic about stocking more gluten-free and dairy-free versions of the foods we Americans enjoy on a daily basis. This is a store that is listening to the consumer and meeting the needs of those of us with dietary restrictions. And for that reason alone, I love this market. (Seriously, Trader Joe’s should be paying me to write this post. :) )

Here is the recipe. Enjoy! Let me know how it turned out for you. Did you use any other ingredients? I would love to hear your take on it!

Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Chocolate Coconut Cookie Shake

Gluten-free, Dairy-free Chocolate Coconut Cookie Shake

Ingredients

8 ounces Trader Joe’s Vanilla Coconut Milk
5 Trader Joe’s Gluten-free Joe Joes’s
1 container of Trader Joe’s Vanilla Coconut Yogurt
2 scoops of Trader Joe’s Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream

Directions

Combine the ingredients in a high-speed blender.
Adjust to your desired thickness (i.e. add milk to send it out or more cookies or ice cream to thicken it)
Serve immediately.