Thursday, September 29, 2011

Peanut Butter S'mores Brownies (Flourless)

These Peanut Butter S'mores Brownies are completely flourless and sinfully delicious! I'm also convinced that in addition to being As Good As Gluten, they are guilt-free.

Guilt-free? Yes, I'll make a case for guilt-free (and healthier) brownies any day. Don't worry, I have an awfully convincing argument. My Peanut Butter S'mores Brownies just must be packed with protein since two of the main ingredients are peanut butter and black beans. You may be wondering about the marshmallows? Well, the marshmallows are just a little treat on top!

Seriously, I made these for a Labor Day cookout and everyone seemed to enjoy them. My husband was surprised that another one of my recipe concoctions turned out so well (you'd think he'd have more faith in me now), and our friends were surprised that black beans could be used in a dessert and taste great. Personally, I've really, really enjoyed warming up the leftovers in the microwave. The brownie layer melts just enough when the marshmallows are roasting under the broiler, that it makes an absolutely delicious warm cookie and chocolate brownie dessert topped with ooey-gooey marshmallows. Delectable!

Peanut Butter S'mores Brownies (Flourless)
·1 recipe GF Easy Peanut Butter Cookies
·1 recipe Black Bean Brownies
·½ bag large marshmallows

Preheat oven to 350˚. Lightly grease two 8x8 inch pans or one 13x9 inch pan. Prepare GF Easy Peanut Butter Cookie Dough according to recipe, and press cookie dough into the base of the prepared pan. Prepare Black Bean Brownie Batter according to the recipe and pour over the top of the peanut butter cookie dough. Bake layered mixture for 30 minutes.

When you are ready to serve, top the peanut butter and brownie layered dessert with large marshmallows. Move a shelf in your oven to the highest rack and turn the broiler on. Roast marshmallows until the tops are browned. Watch closely as it only takes a minute or two to roast the marshmallows. Serve warm and enjoy!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Vanilla Chai Tea Latte

My husband and I L-O-V-E Vanilla Chai Tea Lattes. I've been trying to recreate a recipe at home, but it never turned out just right...until now! I've made this recipe multiple times a week since I finally perfected it a few weeks ago. And, we're absolutely in love! 

I will definitely be making this on a regular basis since it's starting to feel like fall where I live. This recipe takes less than 5 minutes to make. Since I plan on making this almost daily during the week, I'll measure out a full week of spices in advance to save time in the morning.

Vanilla Chai Tea Latte
·2 black tea bags
·1½ tsp ground cinnamon
·½ tsp ground ginger
·¼ tsp allspice
·¼ tsp ground nutmeg
·1/8 tsp cloves
·1¼ cup water
·1 cup milk
·¼ cup brown sugar
·½ tsp vanilla

Place tea bags and spices in a coffee filter, add water and brew. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine milk, brown sugar, and vanilla. Stir and until sugar is dissolved and mixture is heated through. Pour milk mixture into tea mixture in coffee pot, stir, and pour into mugs.

Serves: 2

I've also shared this recipe on: Slightly Indulgent Tuesday

Recipe inspired by Taste of Home

Saturday, September 24, 2011

1 Amazing Year Gluten-Free

One year ago, I made a decision I had been thinking about and avoiding for at least a year. I decided to fully commit to trying the gluten-free diet. I'd wrestled with the diet here and there, but never stuck it out long enough to see if it made a serious difference in my health.

Before I began following the gluten-free diet in September of 2010, a few of my immediate family members were diagnosed celiac or gluten intolerant and had been following the diet for a year or so. Despite knowing in the back of my mind for a good year that I needed to be gluten-free, I had a moment of clarity last year. I was home visiting my family and started to connect the dots that the health symptoms I've had for years were identical to my family members who were now gluten-free. Last September, I decided to fully commit to the gluten-free diet and see what happened.

The outcome has truly been a blessing. Within days, the health symptoms I had experienced for many, many years were gone. I realized that the problems that plauged me were not a way of life and they could easily be avoided. I felt SO much better; I felt incredible! Since then, I've stuck to my mission to find and create simple, gluten-free recipes that taste As Good As Gluten!

I will be the first to admit that it wasn't easy at first, but it wasn't hard either. I loved a lot of gluten foods and was worried that I would have to give up my beloved pasta and brownies. Luckily, I had my family's experience to learn from about what foods I could and could not have. They also taught me which gluten-free food brands were good and which ones tasted like cardboard. Even more importantly, they taught me how to replace gluten with gluten-free substitutes and still maintain a good nutritional balance (i.e., use healthy flour blends and not all startch). I also quickly discovered the wonderful world of gluten-free bloggers that made the journey easier.

I'll admit, the first month or two of following the gluten-free diet was hard and I cheated a few times. I always felt the repercussions. I eventually stopped lying to myself and learned that yes, I really need to follow the gluten-free diet. Cheating with non-gluten-free foods were not worth it. I honestly do not even miss those foods anymore. Partially because of how bad they make me feel. But, also because I can easily create a gluten-free version that tastes As Good As Gluten (and in many cases, better than gluten).

I started As Good As Gluten a few weeks after I started following the gluten-free diet. My soul purpose was to share my recipes with many of my family members who are gluten-free. A blog seemed like the easiest way to do so, without having to remember who asked for a recipe and if I had sent it him/her yet. I had absolutely no idea how much As Good As Gluten would grow. I've found a passion and a hobby I enjoy. I have friends, friends of friends, and total strangers reading my blog and trying my recipes.

Being gluten-free has been a blessing. It has rekindled my love and passion for cooking and baking. Before I started following the gluten-free diet, my husband, Mike, and I had a regular rotation of meals we would make. Over the past year, it's actually become the "special occasion" when we make a recipe for a second or third time. Despite how much we love almost all of the recipes that I blog on As Good As Gluten, I'm creative and there are just so many more recipes that I'm anxious to create or put my own spin on.

Thank you, gluten intolerance for giving me one amazing gluten-free year! I'm looking forward to always living a gluten-free life and seeing where it takes me!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Black Bean Rice with Tomato and Cayenne Pepper Sauce

This hearty, gluten-free, vegetarian meal is the perfect blend of delectable flavors! It can be served on its own as a main dish, or complement any Mexican-inspired meal as a side dish.

Black Bean Rice with Tomato and Cayenne Pepper Sauce
·1 TBS EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
·1 small onion, chopped
·2 cloves garlic, chopped
·2 tomatoes, diced
·1 fresh cayenne pepper, chopped
·1 - 15oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
·½ tsp fresh oregano
·1 cup instant brown rice
·1 cup water
·1½ fresh cilantro, chopped

Heat EVOO in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, cooking until softened.

Add the remaining ingredients, except the cilantro, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes until the liquid is absorbed by the rice.

Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Uncover and stir in chopped cilantro before serving.

This recipe was adapted and inspired by "Easy Gluten-Free" by Tricia Thompson and Marlissa Brown.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger: Adventures of a Gluten Free Mom

Gluten-Free Power Truffles
Click here for recipe
A few months ago, Shirley of Gluten Free Easily adopted Heidi of Adventures of a Gluten Free Mom for the Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger Event. Shirley turned Heidi's Gluten-Free Power Sticks into Gluten-Free Power Truffles. When I decided to adopt Heidi for September's Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger Event, I knew I had to try this recipe.

Not only are these Gluten-Free Power Truffles quick and easy to make, they are nutritious and satisfying. I have to agree with Shirley that these truffles taste good before they are frozen, but they taste even better after they are frozen. I packed some Power Truffles for lunch one day (for one of those super busy, work through lunch type of days), and I was shocked to find myself completely full after only 5 or 6 truffles.

Slow Cooker Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal
I've finally accepted that fall weather has arrived. Fall is one of my favorite seasons (as well as spring and summer), but I dread what comes after fall - winter. Now that I'm no longer in denial of fall's arrival, I'm taking full advantage of cooking fall recipes (and loving every minute of it). 

Heidi's Slow Cooker Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal was a great breakfast for a cool, fall morning. To save on cooking time, I cut the recipe in half and cooked it on high in a 2.5qt slow cooker for one and a half hours. I enjoyed this flavorful and hearty breakfast; however, I thought it could be sweeter. I stirred in some brown sugar before serving to balance out the flavors. 

In previous Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger events I've made:

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Caramelized Onion and Sausage Gluten-Free Pizza

Mike and I both loved this scrumptious gluten-free pizza! The addition of carmelized onions to a traditional sausage pizza was fantastic. (Please exuse the skimpy cheese on top - I ran out of shredded cheese as I was cooking and only had ½ cup to use).

Caramelized Onion and Sausage Gluten-Free Pizza
·1 recipe gluten-free pizza dough (I used my GF Calzone Recipe and made pizza instead of a Calzone)
·1 medium onion, chopped
·2 TBS butter
·1½ cups marina/pizza sauce
·1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
·Handful of fresh oregano, chopped
·Corn meal, for dusting
·1 lb. ground pork sausage, browned and drained

Preheat oven and pizza stone to 400˚.

Prepare gluten-free pizza dough and browned pork sausage; set aside.

In a small skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add chopped onions and cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring often, until onions develop a caramel brown color.

Carefully remove the hot pizza stone from the oven and sprinkle the pizza stone with corn meal. Place prepared pizza crust on the pizza stone, top with marinara sauce, caramelized onions, shredded mozzarella cheese, and chopped oregano.

Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

I've also shared this recipe on: Slightly Indulgent Tuesday

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Fruity Water

Fruity Water is very simple and purely refreshing! It is also versatile with the endless combinations of fruit you can use to flavor water.

I originally saw a recipe similar to this in a summer issue of Everyday with Rachael Ray. You can prepare Fruity Water with any fresh fruit of choice. I used 2 lemons and 1 kiwi. I washed and sliced the lemons, then peeled and sliced the kiwi. Place the sliced fruit in the bottom of a pitcher and fill with water (about 1-2 quarts of water for the amount of fruit I used). Let the pitcher of Fruity Water chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes before serving. Use a small strainer as you pour the Fruity Water into glasses to remove any fruit particles.

If you don't serve immediately (or you want to keep a pitcher in your fridge to enjoy over the span of a few days), remove the fruit after a day to avoid the water tasting like the fruit rind.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Mike's Potato-Crusted Alaskan Walleye

How have Mike and I never tried potato-crusted fish before? It's amazing, and I'm not even a huge fan of fish! My fish-loving husband said, "This breading is delicious. It's the best I've ever had!"

Another amazing fish recipe made by my wonderful husband! I knew there had to be a good purpose for leftover potato flakes I had in the pantry, I just didn't know it would be this great! Crusting Alaskan Walleye fillets in potato flakes and spices added great flavor and texture! Mike served with broccoli and creamed corn (from my creamed sweet corn recipe), and we enjoyed a fantastic dinner with perfect weather outside on our deck.

Mike's Potato-Crusted Alaskan Walleye
·2 large walleye fillets, cut in half lengthwise
·1½ cup dry, mashed potato flakes
·2 TBS onion powder
·2 TBS paprika
·1 TBS garlic powder
·½ TBS Old Bay seasoning
·Salt and pepper
·1 egg
·EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)

In a shallow dish, combine dry ingredients from potato flakes to salt and pepper. In a separate shallow dish, lightly beat egg. Dip fish fillets into egg, then into potato mixture to coat. In a large skillet, heat EVOO over medium heat. Pan-fry fillets 3-4 minutes on each side, until golden brown.

I've also shared this recipe on: Slightly Indulgent Tuesday

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Potato Gnocchi Mac & Cheese with Roasted Cayenne Hot Pepper

The ultimate adult comfort food - Potato Gnocchi Mac & Cheese with a twist of Roasted Cayenne Pepper heat!

I love this quick potato gnocchi recipe, since I rarely have the patience to prepare traditional gnocchi. I really enjoyed this gluten-free comfort food recipe with a hint of heat. It is important to use a mild-tasting gluten-free flour and add the nutmeg, to mask the strong taste many gluten-free flours have.

Quick Potato Gnocchi
·1 cup instant mashed potato flakes
·1 cup hot water
·1 egg
·½ tsp salt
·1 cup mild-tasting gluten-free flour, plus more for dusting (I used an all-purpose GF mix without xanthan gum)
·½ TBS ground nutmeg

In a medium bowl, stir together potato flakes and hot water. Let well-blended mixture cool for approximately 5 minutes. Stir in egg, salt, and nutmeg. Gradually blend in enough flour to make a stiff dough. Divide dough and roll out dough into long, thin cylinders on a well-floured board. With a floured knife, cut dough into bite-size pieces. Place gnocchi in boiling water, being careful not to overcrowd the pot. When the gnocchi rise to the top of the pot, remove them with a slotted spoon. Continue, if needed, until are gnocchi are cooked.

Saucepan Mac & Cheese Sauce with Roasted Cayenne Hot Pepper
·1 fresh cayenne/hot pepper hybrid
·2 TBS water
·1 medium onion, chopped
·2 TBS butter
·2 TBS all-purpose GF flour
·2 cracks of fresh ground pepper
·2 cups skim milk
·2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Chop fresh cayenne pepper lengthwise into a 3-4 pieces, and roast in a dish under the broiler. Once the cayenne pepper begins to blacken, remove from oven and let cool.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter and add onion. Cook onion until tender and translucent. Stir in gluten-free flour, pepper, and milk. Cook over medium heat until slightly thickened and bubbly. Add cheese, stirring until melted.

In a blender or food processor, puree roasted cayenne pepper with about 2 TBS of water. Stir cayenne pepper puree into cheese sauce.

Pour cheese sauce over cooked gnocchi; stirring gently to coat gnocchi with sauce.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sunday

Friday, September 9, 2011

Peach and Peppermint Iced Tea

Peach and Peppermint Iced Tea; a great tasting, refreshing summer beverage!

When Mike and I were dating many, many years ago, he gave me one of my most-used gifts from him - a Mr. Coffee Iced Tea Maker. We use it multiple times a week as we love iced tea and creating different flavor varieties. To create Peach and Peppermint Iced Tea, I brew a large pitcher of regular tea bags and a handful of fresh peppermint from my garden. When the tea was done brewing, I pureed a few peaches, strained out the lumps, and stirred into the pitcher of iced tea. Depending on how sweet the peaches are, I sometimes stir in sugar for added sweetness.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sunday

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Blueberry Cobbler

This Blueberry Cobbler is a perfect summer dessert. It's sinfully sweet with a crisp topping and an oeey, gooey fruit center!

I used my Grandma's Peach Cobbler to make Blueberry Cobbler. I used frozen blueberries and as the cobbler baked, some of the topping sunk to the middle of the cobbler. This added a delectable surprise of topping mixed with the fruit, bite after bite!

Blueberry Cobbler
Cobbler Ingredients:
·16 oz. blueberries (I used frozen, but fresh would also work)
·¾ cup sugar
Topping Ingredients:
·¾ cup sugar
·¾ cup all-purpose gluten-free flour
·1 egg
·1 stick butter
·1 tsp vanilla
·Cinnamon, to sprinkle over the cobbler topping before baking

In a bowl, combine blueberries and sugar. In a separate bowl, combine topping ingredients. Lightly grease a 9x9 pan. Layer peaches in the bottom of the pan and top with crust topping. Bake 400˚ in a metal pan or 375˚ in a glass pan for 30 minutes, or until golden brown.

Note: I made separate, smaller dishes so the Blueberry Cobbler in my picture isn't in a 9x9 dish. However, the baking time remained the same when using smaller baking dishes.

I've also shared this recipe on: Gluten Free Wednesday, Seasonal Sunday, This Week's Craving

Sunday, September 4, 2011

My Pantry - A Taste of Thai Rice Noodles

I've recently discovered a love for Rice Noodles - they're cook in a matter of minutes and are extremely versatile. When I made Thai Peanut Noodles a few weeks ago, I served the Thai Peanut Sauce over A Taste of Thai's Rice Noodles. The flavor and texture of the noodles is fantastic! As to be expected, Rice Noodles are pretty bland. This is a benefit because most recipes you'll use rice noodles in will be flavorful and complement the rice noodles well. I'm excited about other recipes I'll come up with and come across to serve over rice noodles.

What are your favorite recipes to serve over Rice Noodles?

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. It's a product I bought, loved, and wanted to share with you!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Crispy Fish with Creamed Sweet Corn

Wow - this meal was fantastic! The texture is well-balanced with crispy fish and smooth, creamy sweet corn.

I've never been a big fan of creamed corn, until now! I've shied away from creamed corn in the past because I had no idea it could taste different than what was served on school lunch trays. When it's cooked right with fresh sweet corn, it's amazing! The fish was also delicious, and I don't even like seafood that much!

Crispy Fish with Creamed Sweet Corn
·2 mild fish fillets (such as tilapia, or pollock)
·Salt and pepper
·2 TBS grainy mustard
·½ cup gluten-free bread crumbs
·2 cups fresh sweet corn kernels
·2 TBS butter
·¼ cup half ‘n half
·2 TBS EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
·Handful of fresh parsley

Pat fish dry with a towel, then season with salt and pepper. Spread mustard evenly over the top of each fillet. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs, pressing to adhere. Refrigerate while you make the creamed sweet corn.

Using a food processor, puree 1½ cups of sweet corn kernels. Transfer to a small saucepan and stir in the remaining ½ cup kernels. Add butter and cook over medium heat until hot, about 5 minutes. Stir in the half ‘n half and cook until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat.

In a skillet, heat EVOO over medium heat. Add fish fillets and cook, turning once, until golden and crisp, about 8 minutes.

Serve the fish on a bed of creamed sweet corn, topped with parsley.

Yield: 2 servings

This recipe is adapted from Everyday with Rachael Ray, 2011

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sunday

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Chicken and Corn Casserole

This is a great casserole recipe to use up leftover shredded chicken. Mike made this casserole for dinner a few weeks ago; it was a little bland, but it tastes perfect with homemade salsa on top.

If you're not planning on topping your casserole with salsa, plus up some of the flavor in the casserole. Mike must have really enjoyed this casserole. I had one serving before I left on a two day business trip and there were no traces of it left when I returned!

Chicken and Corn Casserole
·3 eggs
·3 TBS GF all-purpose flour
·½ cup half ‘n half
·1 cup milk
·1 TBS honey
·1 tsp dried dill
·Handful of fresh parsley, chopped
·2 cups corn kernels, divided
·Salt and pepper
·Extra virgin olive oil
·1 onion, diced
·1 red bell pepper, diced
·1 fresh cayenne pepper, seeded and chopped
·1½ cups shredded, cooked chicken
·1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
·Homemade salsa (Mike made my Pico de Gallo recipe and added some fresh, chopped cayenne pepper from our garden)

Preheat oven to 350˚. Combine eggs and flour in a large bowl. Add half ‘n half, milk, honey, pepper, dill, parsley, 1 cup of corn, salt and pepper. Blend until incorporated.

In a skillet, saute onion, bell pepper, and cayenne pepper in olive oil until onions are translucent. Stir in remaining corn, blended mixture, cooked chicken, and cheese. Pour mixture into a greased 13x9 casserole pan. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes, or until golden-brown in color and set in the middle.

Serve casserole topped with salsa.

Yield: 6 servings

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sunday