Monday, January 30, 2012

Red Wine Risotto with Peas

Red wine adds a delicious flavor to this creamy risotto dish. It's simple (yet time consuming) to prepare and totally worth the effort.

Since my first experience making risotto in December, I've been completely and utterly obsessed with it. I actually enjoy the extra work that goes into making risotto. I've found that when I put this much love into a dish, I savor it even more. Now, I wouldn't want to make risotto every night, but I do enjoy quality time in the kitchen making risotto on the weekends.

Red Wine Risotto with Peas
Adapted from Giada de Laurentiis
·2 cups chicken broth
·1½ cups water
·3 TBS butter
·1 small/medium onion, chopped
·2 tsp minced garlic
·1 cup Arborio rice
·½ cup dry red wine
·½ cup frozen peas, partially thawed
·2 tsp dried parsley
·½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
·Salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a small saucepan, bring the broth and water to a simmer. Cover and keep warm on low heat.

In a large Dutch oven over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the onion and sauté until translucent, about 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds. Stir in the rice and toast for about 2 minutes. Add the wine and stir until wine is absorbed, about 1 minute. Add ¾ cup of hot broth mixture; simmer over medium-low heat until the liquid is absorbed, stirring often, about 4 minutes. Repeat, adding ¾ cup of liquid to the hot broth 3 more times, stirring often, about 14 minutes longer.

If necessary, add the remaining broth to loosen the texture of the risotto. Stir in the peas, parsley, and Parmesan cheese. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Serve.

Yield: 4 servings

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Cream Cheese Chicken Chili (Crockpot)

This unique chili recipe is hearty and flavorful. Mike and I both loved it. I was the lucky one who got to the leftovers first the following day for lunch!

A coworker found this recipe on Pinterest (how did we live before Pinterest?!) and recommended it to me. Cream Cheese Chicken Chili absolutely lived up to its rave reviews. It only took minutes to put into the crockpot, and when I got home from work the house smelled fantastic. A warm and delicious bowl (or two) of chili for dinner made up for the cold, Midwest winter weather outside. I will most definitely be making this recipe again.

Click Here for Cream Cheese Chicken Chili Recipe from Plain Chicken

Thursday, January 26, 2012

In My Pantry: Betty Crocker Gluten Free Cookie Mix AND Luscious Layer Bars Recipe

I've had a box of Betty Crocker's Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix in my pantry for awhile now. I finally got around to trying it a few weeks ago, but I just couldn't make plain old chocolate chip cookies. Instead, I made Luscious Layer Bars. Chocolate, caramel, and coconut cookie bars...mmmmm...sinfully delicious!

Before I get into the recipe, here's what I thought about the Cookie Mix. As gluten free options are often limited, I appreciate that a trusted brand has a line of gluten free baking mixes. However, like all gluten free versions, Betty Crocker's GF mixes are expensive. I also didn't like how sugary the dough and baked cookie was (this is a big statement for a sweet tooth to make). As soon as I poured the mix into the bowl, I could see a lot of granular sugar. I also found it impossible to mix the dough using a hand mixer. The dough wasn't forming together. Instead, I put the mixer aside and mixed the dough with my hands. While this isn't preferable, it actually matches my pre-gluten free experience with Betty Crocker's regular cookie mixes.

Despite the negatives, the final outcome tasted like a real chocolate chip cookie. However, I probably won't buy this mix again since I've learned to make delicious gluten free desserts from scratch that taste As Good As Gluten.

Now, onto the Gluten Free Luscious Layer Bars. These sinful cookie bars are delicious. The taste like a Samoa Cookie married a Chocolate Chip Cookie bar. Heavenly!

Luscious Layer Bars
Recipe adapted from Betty Crocker

Cookie Layer Ingredients:
·1 box of Betty Crocker Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix
·1 egg
·½ cup butter, softened
·1 tsp vanilla
Note: Instead of the ingredients above, you can substitute a homemade recipe for gluten free chocolate chip cookie dough.

Layer Ingredients
·1 6-8oz. can sweetened condensed milk
·1 cup caramel bits/chips
·1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
·1 cup flaked coconut
·1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Preheat oven to 350˚. Spray bottom of a 13x9 pan with cooking spray. In a large bowl, mix together cookie layer ingredients until cookie dough is formed. Press cookie dough in bottom of pan. Bake 15 minutes.

Drizzle condensed milk evenly over baked cookie crust. Sprinkle with caramel bits, chocolate chips, coconut, and nuts. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until light golden brown. Cool completely and cut into bars.

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

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Spicy Peanut Noodles with Asian Veggies

I love these Spicy Peanut Noodles. This meal has smooth and crunchy textures and packs just the right amount of heat. The addition of vegetables makes the dish healthier and helps balance out the meal.

Spicy Peanut Noodles with Asian Veggies
·8 oz. rice noodles (I use A Taste of Thai Rice Noodles)
·½ cup smooth peanut butter
·1 TBS GF Soy Sauce Substitute
·1 TBS cider vinegar
·1 TBS honey
·3 green onions, chopped
·1 TBS garlic powder
·1 TBS hot chili sauce (I use Sriracha)
·2 carrots, peeled and chopped
·½ cup cooked, shredded chicken
·1 - 8oz. can water chestnuts, drained and rinsed
·1 - 8oz. can bamboo shoots, drained and rinsed
·½ cup chopped peanuts

Bring a pot of water to a boil, add the rice noodles, and cook for 5-6 minutes until tender. Drain, reserving ½ cup of the cooking liquid.

In a small saucepan, combine the peanut butter, soy sauce substitute, vinegar, honey, 2 green onions, garlic powder, hot chili sauce, and reserved cooking liquid. Heat over medium-low heat until smooth and creamy.

In a large bowl, stir together the rice noodles, sauce, chicken, carrots, water chestnuts, and bamboo shoots. Sprinkle with remaining chopped green onion and peanuts.

Yield: 4 servings

I've also shared this recipe on: Gluten Free Wednesdays

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Grown-Up Cake Float

Grown-Up Cake Float is another easy to prepare cocktail that tastes just like a Rootbeer Float. Cake flavored vodka is a genius idea. Yum!

Grown-Up Cake Float
·2 parts UV Cake Vodka
·4 parts rootbeer soda

Pour vodka and rootbeer in a glass over ice. Stir well and serve.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Martini

This martini is sweet and dangerously tasty because it really does taste like Pineapple Upside Down Cake. I was pleased to turn my all time favorite shot into a delicious martini.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Martini
·1 part UV Cake Vodka
·2 parts Pineapple Juice

Pour vodka and pineapple juice into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well, then pour into martini glasses for serving.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Baked Oatmeal with Blueberries and Bananas

While this Baked Oatmeal with Blueberries and Bananas took time to prepare, it was worth it for a warm, healthy, and delicious weekend breakfast.

Over the past year, I've seen a lot of recipes for Baked Oatmeal. I've been wanting to try it, but never came across a recipe that really screamed "eat me" until I came across this recipe last week. The flavor combination in Baked Oatmeal with Blueberries and Bananas is delightful, and I think the recipe could easily be adapted for other fruit flavors.

Click here for the Baked Oatmeal with Blueberries and Bananas from Skinny Taste

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Chocolate Peppermint Pudding Poke Cake

This decadent cake is inspired by my Better than Sex Cake recipe and my love of peppermint. This chocolate lovers cake is delectable!

Chocolate Peppermint Pudding Poke Cake
·1 recipe for Black Bean Chocolate Cake (Flourless)
·1 recipe for Homemade Chocolate Pudding
·¼ cup skim milk
·3 crushed candy canes, optional

Prepare Black Bean Chocolate Cake (Flourless) according to recipe. Once cake is cool, poke 15-20 holes in the cake with a wooden spoon.

Prepare Homemade Chocolate Pudding according to recipe, using 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips in place of the white chocolate chips and dark chocolate chips.

In a small bowl, thin out half of the prepared Chocolate Pudding with milk. Pour mixture over the top of the cake, allowing the thinned out pudding to seep into the holes in the cake.

Frost cake with remaining pudding and garnish with crushed candy canes.

Yield: 8 servings

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Chicken Enchilada Soup (Crockpot)

Chicken Enchilada Soup is packed full of delicious flavors and is easy to prepare, since the crockpot does most of the work.

Instead of cooking the onion and garlic prior to adding it to the crockpot, I just put all of the ingredients in the crockpot and let it cook. I also added 4 soft corn tortillas, finely chopped, to the crockpot to get the complete enchilada flavor.

Click here for the Chicken Enchilada Soup recipe from Skinny Taste

Friday, January 13, 2012

Herbed Risotto with Chicken and Caramelized Onions

This Herbed Risotto with Chicken and Caramelized Onions recipe is fabulous.

I've been sick for a few weeks and my wonderful husband made this for dinner last week. We both loved it. Instead of cooking the chicken like the recipe instrcuts, Mike cut it into bite sized pieces and cooked it in a the skillet with some extra virgin olive oil after he cooked the onions. This made it easier to cook. I'll also cut the lemon juice in half next time, since I use a bottle of lemon juice instead of freshly squeezed lemon juice.

Click here for Annie's Eats Herbed Risotto with Chicken and Caramelized Onions recipe

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Bacon and Butternut Risotto

WOW! This Bacon and Butternut Risotto recipe is A-MAZ-ING! The flavors in this dish are phenomenal with the smoky bacon, sweet butternut squash, and creamy risotto.

I made this for dinner two nights in a row over the holidays with my family. We inhaled the first batch and loved it so much I made it again the next night. This was my first time making risotto and I'm now in a risotto phase. Risotto is not hard to prepare, just a little time consuming (which is well worth the effort).

Do you have any favorite risotto recipes for me to try?

Click here for Rachael Ray's Bacon and Butternut Risotto recipe

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Cheesy Corn Chowder (Crockpot)

My husband absolutely loved this soup, and I agree with him! It's a fairly simple crockpot soup recipe that could feed an army. My favorite way to enjoy this soup is with a grilled cheese gluten free sandwich.

Cheesy Corn Chowder (Crockpot)
·¾ cup water
·1 medium onion, chopped
·4 carrots, chopped
·4 ribs of celery, chopped
·1 tsp salt and pepper
·1 - 16oz. bag of frozen corn, thawed
·1 - 15oz. can cream-style corn
·3 cups skim milk
·2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Combine water, onions, carrots, celery, salt and pepper in a 6-qt. crockpot. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours.

Add corn, milk, and cheese. Cook on high for 1 additional hour, then turn on warm until you ready to serve.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Homemade White and Dark Chocolate Pudding

I made this homemade pudding as a light dessert to follow a heavy holiday meal. It's fairly easy to make and tastes delicious!

Homemade White and Dark Chocolate Pudding
·½ cup sugar
·3 TBS cornstarch
·¼ tsp salt
·2 cups skim milk
·1 TBS butter
·1 tsp pure Mexican vanilla
·½ cup white chocolate chips
·½ cup dark chocolate chips
·2 candy canes, crushed (optional)

Combine sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a medium saucepan. Gradually whisk in milk. Heat over medium heat until boiling. Boil for 1 minute, or until it starts to thicken. Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla. Divide pudding in half into two separate pans. In one pan with half of the pudding, stir in white chocolate chips until chips have melted. In the second pan with the remaining half of the pudding mixture, stir in dark chocolate chips until chips have melted. Pour into a dish and place a piece of plastic wrap over the pudding, pressing the plastic wrap right up against the pudding. This will keep the thick skin from forming. Refrigerate until serving. Layer chocolate puddings in a dish and sprinkle with crushed candy canes before serving.

Recipe slightly adapted from Lynn's Kitchen Adventures

Friday, January 6, 2012

Vodka Cream Pasta

Before I was gluten-free, this was another one of Rachael Ray's recipes that I loved. Similar to the Carbonara recipe, my cookbook pages are stuck together from cooking this recipe so much. Not only is it an easy meal to prepare, it was easily converted to be a gluten-free recipe. The unique and slightly sweet sauce makesthis a not so ordinary pasta dish.

Vodka Cream Pasta
·1 TBS extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
·1 small onion, chopped
·1 TBS minced garlic
·½ cup vodka
·½ tsp chicken bouillon
·½ cup boiling water
·1 - 14oz. can diced tomatoes
·1 tsp dried basil
·Salt and pepper
·¼ cup evaporated milk
·8 oz. gluten free penne pasta

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions.

In a large skillet over medium heat, saute onion and garlic in EVOO for 3-5 minutes. Add vodka to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes, until vodka is reduced by half.

In a separate bowl, dissolve chicken bouillon in boiling water. In a food processor, gently process diced tomatoes until some chunks remain. Add chicken bouillon liquid, tomato puree, and basil to the skillet. Bring sauce to a bubble, then reduce heat to simmer. Season with salt and pepper and let simmer until pasta is finished cooking.

Drain pasta. Stir evaporated milk into the sauce, then toss pasta with the sauce. Serve immediately with a side salad.

Serves: 2

Adapted from Rachael Ray's recipe for You Won't Be Single for Long, Vodka Cream Pasta

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Spicy Peanut Soup

Spicy Peanut Soup is a quick and flavorful Asian-inspired soup. The soup packs a touch of heat that brings all of the flavors together nicely.

Spicy Peanut Soup
·½ cup homemade chicken stock
·½ cup water
·½ cup peanut butter
·¼ cup salted peanuts
·3 green onions, chopped (dark greens kept separate)
·½ cup skim milk
·1-2 tsp hot chili sauce

In a blender, combine chicken stock, water, peanut butter, peanuts, and green onions. Blend until
well combined and peanuts are chopped. Pour mixture into a pot and simmer for 5 minutes. Add skim milk and hot sauce and heat for a few more minutes. Serve garnished with the reserved dark greens from the green onions.

Serves: 2-3

Recipe adapted from Everyday with Rachael Ray

Monday, January 2, 2012

Best of As Good As Gluten in 2011

2011 was a great year for me, and I hope it was for you as well. My Best of As Good As Gluten in 2011 list below picks up from where I left off in July with my Best of As Good As Gluten Thus Far in 2011 list. I'm impressed with the diverse lists because before I became gluten-free, my husband and I had a short list of dishes we rotated through. In 2011, I cooked and baked many amazingly delicious gluten free recipes, 179 blog posts to be exact, and tried many new cuisines and baking techniques.

Black Bean Chocolate Cake (Flourless) - This delectable cake is not only my family's favorite, but also a favorite of my readers. If you've never baked with black beans before, start with this recipe. Everyone who tries it comments that it's honestly the best cake they've ever had!

Lemon White Bean Cake with Pistachio Lemon Topping (Flourless) - This cake is also incredibly delectable, light, fluffy, and flavorful. This is a favorite of both my family and my readers. I know my Black Bean Chocolate Cake earned the title of "best cake ever," but this cake also wins the title.

Healthier Buffalo Chicken Dip - This delicious appetizer is a crowd pleaser. It's easy to prepare and tastes phenomenal.

Eggplant Pizza - This recipe was my husband and I's addiction this past summer. I still stand by my claim that it is "the BEST pizza, meal, ever!"

Grandma's Peach Cobbler - I converted my Grandma's Peach Cobbler recipe into a gluten free version which is simply amazing. Every bite is pure oeey, goeey deliciousness.

Crispy Fish with Creamed Sweet Corn - I'm not a seafood or fish lover, so you must trust that meal is fantastic since it makes my "Best of 2011" list. The textures and flavors are well-balanced and tasty.

Vanilla Chai Tea Latte - Personally, this is the one recipe I prepared most often in 2011. I'm so in love with it that I'm often caught in the kitchen trying to hide all evidence that I made it so I don't have to share with my husband!

Pumpkin Snickerdoodles - This cookie recipe is my most popular blog post...ever! It's a delicious twist on a classic, family favorite cookie.

Black Eye Pea Salsa - This simple dip is addicting and uniquely delicious!

Meatloaf Cupcakes - This savory recipe is pure comfort food. This dish makes repeat visits on our dinner table this winter.

Mike’s 20-Ingredient Chili - My husband makes the best chili ever. It's unique and packed full of fantastic flavors.

Apple Pumpkin Salted Caramel Pie - This ultimate fall pie was very well loved my family and my blog readers. This delectable pie earns it's spot among my top 10 blog posts ever.

Apple Butter (Crockpot) - This amazing recipe is dangerously delicious. We enjoyed it on gluten free bread and, occasionally, by the spoonful!

Corn Chowder Mac & Cheese - My husband claims this is one of the best recipes I've ever made. I agree that it is a phenomenal recipe.

Aunt Julie's BBQ Beans - This meaty and sweet recipe is a family favorite that disappears quickly at any gathering.

Double Chocolate Fudge Cookies - 6 Ways - My flourless cookie extravaganza is indulgent and includes Double Chocolate Fudge Cookies, Fudgy Chocolate Crinkle Cookies, Hot Cocoa Cookies, Peppermint Patty Stuffed Chocolate Fudge Cookies, Double Chocolate Peppermint Ice Cream Cookie Sandwiches, and Peppermint Bark Double Chocolate Cookies.

Chicken Pot Pies - This simple twist on a traditional recipe delivers bite after bite of comfort food flavor.

Here's to a Happy 2012, I'm excited for the possibilities!