Tag Archives: nourishing

Gluten Free Buckwheat and Amaranth Bread

gf-breadThis bread is hearty with a nice bite, something that is hard to achieve when baking gluten free bread varieties.  Great as a compliment to dinner, as a grilled sandwich, or toasted with grass fed butter and homemade jam, this is a recipe that I encourage you to try if you are gluten free.  Buckwheat flour makes up the majority in this bread recipe followed by amaranth flour, both of which are full of nutrition.  Buckwheat is not wheat, it is a groat or seed that is usually toasted before being ground into a flour.  Different varieties have been around since 5300 BC, but have probably been eaten by humans even longer.  It is a good source of magnesium, phosphorus, and fiber.  Amaranth, as well, is nutrient dense containing a good amount of protein, fiber, calcium, and some vitamin C.  This recipe yields two short loaves, but you could put all of the dough in one loaf pan for a larger loaf and cook longer, 60-70 minutes.  The bread is thoroughly cooked when you can flick the top of the bread, it feels solid and thuds with a hollow sound remitting back.  Here is the recipe:

Dry Ingredients
1  1/2 c. buckwheat flour plus more for dusting
1 c. amaranth flour
1/2 c. brown rice flour
1/2 c. arrowroot flour
1/4 c. almond flour
1/4 c. ground psyllium husk
1  1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp sea salt

Wet Ingredients
 2  1/2 - 3 c. water
 3 T grass fed or organic butter
 1 T chia seeds
 1 T gelatin
 1 T molasses

Warm 2 1/2 c. water over medium-low heat.  Add butter, chia, molasses, turn heat to low and stir well.  Sprinkle gelatin lightly and evenly over warmed mixture and let stand to dissolve.  If all of the gelatin does not dissolve, then gelly balls will end up in the final product, so try to remove any gelatinous bits that do not dissolve well.

In a large separate bowl, combine all dry ingredients and whisk together to incorporate well.  Whisk wet ingredients until they are coherent and butter is melted.  Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir.  The dough should pull away from the sides of the bowl and stick to itself making a dough ball, but will remain slightly tacky.  Divide dough into two halves.  Use some more buckwheat flour for dusting over the top, sides, and your hands to help navigate the dough into a pan.  Press into two loaves pans that have been greased with coconut oil or butter.  Cut a shallow groove lengthwise down the center to encourage even baking.  Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 – 50 minutes.  The bread is cooked, when you can flick the top of the bread, it feels solid and thuds with a hollow sound remitting back.  Cool slightly before removing loaves from pan to a cooling rack.  Let the bread cool completely before slicing, or else it will be gummy.  It will keep longer stored in the fridge.  Enjoy.

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Bacon and Veggie Hash

This is a really satisfying breakfast that is perfect for weekend mornings.  What makes it thoroughly satisfying is the blend of flavors lent from salty, smoky bacon paired with the sweet from the sweet potato, sweet and pungent onion set the stage for earthy shiitakes.  There is always room for spinach, so that goes in too.

2 slices bacon, cut into lardons.
1/4 of an onion, sliced thin
4 shiitake mushroom caps, sliced
1 small sweet potato, pre-cooked and diced
2 c. fresh spinach
sea salt

Slice bacon and place in a cool pan.  Put pan over low heat to render the fat slowly.  This will make the bacon crispy all the way through.  Stir occasionally until bacon becomes desired crispness.  Drain off excess fat, reserving about 1 T. in the pan for sauteing.  Add onion and sprinkle with a dash of sea salt, stir.  Let onion cook until translucent over low-medium heat stirring occasionally.  Now add shiitakes, a dash of sea salt, the sweet potatoes, a dash of sea salt and the spinach with a teeny bit of sea salt.  Do not stir yet, the order in which these veggies were added to the pan will allow them to cook just as is, in the pan for 3-5 minutes.  Now, stir until spinach is wilted and serve.  This would be good topped with an over easy egg or hollandaise sauce.  A breakfast fit for one, but can easily be doubled or quadrupled.

Parsnip and Potato Mash

4 large parsnips, cut into 1 inch chunks
2 c. small red potatoes
2 T. grass fed butter
2 T. extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp. dried rosemary
2 large cloves garlic, grated
2-4 grinds of black pepper
1 tsp. sea salt, plus more for boiling water

Place washed potatoes and parsnips in a large pot and cover with water.  Add a big pinch of sea salt.  Bring water to boil, remove lid and continue to cook parsnips and potatoes for 15 minutes or until tender.  Drain water from pot.  Return parsnips and potatoes to pot and let them release steam into the air.  By removing extra moisture this way, the parsnips and potatoes can soak up flavors better.  Now, add everything else to the pot and begin to mash with a potato masher or the back of a spoon.  (My masher broke and I keep forgetting to buy another one, so end up using this technique more often than I wish to.  This technique just takes a little bit more arm strength and perseverance.  Haha, such is life!)  Taste it, maybe it needs more salt or butter, add it, if that suits your taste.  Makes about 4 servings.

I served these mashers with a mixed baby greens salad tossed in a Preserved Lemon and Lemon Thyme Vinaigrette along with a chorizo sausage, nitrate free of course, and a little bit of dijon mustard.  This is a delicious early autumn meal and pairs well with hard cider.

Plum and Pear Crisp

1 pear, cored and sliced thin
2 plums, cored and sliced thin
1/2 c. mixed nuts, some of the nuts coarsely chopped and some finely chopped 
(this nut blend includes walnuts, almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, and pistachios)
1/4 c. dark brown cane sugar
1/4 c. arrowroot powder
2 T. coconut oil
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.  In a casserole dish or pie plate place pear and plum.  Toss lightly with your fingers to combine them.  In a separate, small bowl combine all other ingredients.  Stir until the coconut oil is dispersed and the mixture is crumbly.  It should hold together pretty easily when pressed into your palm.  Sprinkle mixture over pears and plums pressing the mixture into palms and crumbling as you go to make some larger clumps and some smaller crumbly clumps.  Bake for 20-25 minutes.  Let cool slightly before serving.  Yield 4 people.

Stacey’s Salad Dressing

Over thesalad dressing years, I have acquired certain tips from good cooks to hone my own skills in the kitchen.  From my dad, I learned that the best salad dressings, are the ones you make yourself.  He always makes his own salad dressing, one reason is: he can control the ingredients that go into it.  His salad dressing contains extra virgin olive oil and no added sugar.  Extra virgin olive oil is cold pressed, first pressed oil that comes from olives.  Mediterranean cultures have been using this oil for centuries, meaning it is a traditional food that humans have thrived on for longer than time since the industrial revolution.  Extra virgin olive oil is a healthy fat, it is full of monounsaturated oils and vitamin E.  It is best used as a finishing oil or salad dressing because it is sensitive to heat.

In following suit of my dad, who is health conscious, I started making my own salad dressing about ten years ago.  My versions have evolved over the years, but has always been delicious (at least that is what my husband says.  He drinks the dressing that collects at the bottom of his bowl after he has finished his salad).  Here is my latest version.

1/4 c. dijon mustard
1/4 c. raw apple cider vinegar
1/4 c. balsamic vinegar
1 and 1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp. Salt, Pepper, Garlic

Reuse an old oil or vinegar bottle and add the ingredients to it using a funnel.  Shake vigorously until the dressing is smooth and emulsified.

Cucumber, Watermelon, and Mint Salad

1 mini cucumber, cut into half moons
1/2 c. of watermelon, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 spring fresh mint, leaves removed, minced
1/8 tsp. jalapeno, minced (less or more depending on your heat tolerance)
1/2 tsp. sherry vinegar
drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
sea salt to taste

Combine everything and stir gently to coat.  Taste.  Add a touch more sea salt to bring out flavors if needed.  Made for one, but easy to quadruple.  Goes well with anything grilled.

 

Spicy Sauteed Snow Peas

snowpeas2 c. snow peas, de-stringed

1 garlic clove, sliced

1 T. coconut oil

pinch of red pepper flakes

sea salt to taste

My sister-in-law makes some fantastic green beans using a similar technique, but I have snow peas to cook, so snow peas it is.  Her beans and these snow peas are garlicky, spicy, smokey, salty, and perfect as a side dish to pretty much anything.

Heat pan over medium heat.  Add coconut oil and sliced garlic with a touch of salt.  Cook for 30 seconds.  Add snow peas, a pinch of sea salt and a pinch of red pepper flakes.  Saute for 2 minutes stirring beans to coat with oil, then put a lid on and cook covered for 5-7 minutes.  You do not need to stir the snow peas once covered, it adds a nice flavor if they develop a little char on the underside.  Snow peas will turn bright green when cooked, they will be “teeth tender” but still contain a slight give, do not over cook.