I knew this was coming, and I was so hoping it would get here before we left town. For a review, go here!
So, today, I used my sugar pumpkin to make a gluten free pie. Making a pumpkin pie from scratch is a lot easier than you would think. And, you get to decide what ingredients to use in it. Start with one of those little “sugar” pumpkins available in grocery stores this time of year.
To get a pumpkin ready for using in recipes, cut it in about 8 pieces, scrape out the seeds and goo inside. Spray the pieces with olive oil and place them on a baking sheet that has been covered with aluminum foil. Place another piece of aluminum foil over the top. Bake at 400 degrees for about an hour. Remove from oven and let cool.
When the pumpkin pieces are cooled, peel off the rind. At this point, you can freeze the pieces. I put about half of my pumpkin in the freezer in zip lock bags for another day. Out of the other half, I made a pie and a savory vegetable dish. For this post, I am talking about the pie.
Measure out about 2 1/4 cups of the cooked pumpkin. Put it in a large bowl and mash with a potato masher. Add 3 eggs, 1/2 cup of milk, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice, and 1/3 cup melted butter. Mix well with an electric mixer or a whisk. Pour into an uncooked pie crust.
For my pie, I used Mixes From The Heartland Pie Crust Mix, but you can use any gluten free pie crust mix. I used 1 cup of the mix, 1/4 cup of butter,1 egg, and 1 tsp of vinegar. Mix well, and form the dough into a ball. Place on a piece of plastic wrap, put another piece of plastic wrap on top, and roll out very thin. Place the pie crust in a pie dish, trim the edges, and then press with a fork to form a decorative edge. Pour in your pie filling, and bake for about 1 hour in a 400 degree oven. Serve plain or with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. MMMMMMMMMM…………..
Last month when we went down to Prescott for FabGrandpa’s visit to the VA, we ate at a little Mexican restaurant there. We tried their Shrimp Stuffed Avocados and boy were they ever good! I told FabGrandpa that I would try to re-create them at home.
Here is the version I came up with, and it is pretty darn close! This recipe makes enough for 4 servings for appetizers or 2 servings for dinner.
2 ripe avocados
1 lb uncooked shrimp
2 tablespoons butter, margarine, or olive oil
pico de gallo (store bought or make your own. I used ready made from the produce section of the grocery store)
Cut the avocados in half, remove the pit, and peel. For two dinner servings, put 2 avocado halves in each bowl. For appetizer servings, put one avocado half in each bowl. Roll the lime around on the counter to soften it up, slice off one end, and squeeze the juice over the avocado halves.
Peel and devein the shrimp, rinse well, and drain. Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the shrimp to the pan, and sprinkle generously with chipotle pepper. Stir and sautee the shrimp until done, about 10 minutes.
Place half of the cooked shrimp in each bowl over the avocado halves for dinner servings, or a fourth of the shrimp on each avocado half for appetizer servings. Spoon about 1/3 to 1/2 cup of pico de gallo over the shrimp. Serve with tabasco sauce if desired.
Many years ago, when my children were small, our best friends introduced us to a restaurant in Atlanta that was famous for their T-bone steaks. They have been in business since 1932. At the time we were going there, it was located on Lee Street, but now it is on Lake Dow Road in McDonough, Georgia. The thing I liked best about Pilgreen’s was their fried cauliflower. It was battered in a beer batter and deep fried, and served up with seafood cocktail sauce or horseradish sauce. Either one makes it sooooo gooooodddd!
Yesterday, I discovered that I had all the ingredients on hand to make up some gluten free fried cauliflower here at home. And while I was making it, I was reminiscing about all the times we ate there with Bobby and Sharon Jones and their son, Johnny. Sometimes other friends would show up and it would be a wonderful time.
To make the beer batter:
1 bottle of gluten free beer (I used a new one I found in Flagstaff called New Grist, made with sorghum and rice, and it is good!)
1 cup of Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Biscuit and Baking Mix
1/2 tsp salt
Mix all ingredients well and let it sit for about half an hour before using. Cut up the cauliflower into florets. Dip each floret into the batter, and deep fry in canola or corn oil until golden brown, about 8-10 minutes on high heat. Remove from oil and let drain on paper towels.
I didn’t have any kind of sauce for the batch I made, but it still tasted good. Almost like they make at Pilgreen’s. This batter would also make some yummy onion rings. I made fried eggplant too!
Before we left Alabama last month, we bought a case of catfish filets to bring with us to the North Rim. I was going to have a fish fry for our friends, but that has not worked out, since we don’t have a place big enough to cook and serve to 15 people. So, I have been making catfish for us about once a week.
I didn’t want to eat fried fish that often (ok, I gained too much weight eating fried catfish 4 times a week over the winter!), so I came up with this recipe:
4 medium catfish filets (any firm white fish will work)
2 bell peppers, sliced up
2 onions,cut in fourths and sliced
2 closed garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
3-4 tablespoons olive oil
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add peppers, onion, and garlic, and sautee until they are done to your liking. Add salt and pepper. Move the sauteed veggies to the side. Put the fish filets in the pan, cover with cooked veggies. Turn the heat down, cover the skillet. Cook on medium low heat about 12 mintues, until fish is done. Serve with rice or potatoes.
I decided to make some corned beef and cabbage. In the past, I usually just cooked cabbage with some bacon, and that was that. But recently I started adding other things to it. Today’s cabbage looks like this:
I started out with 3 tablespoons of bacon grease in the skillet, then added one head of cabbage, chopped, 3 cloves of garlic, an onion, and six small red potatoes. After everything is in the pan, add 2 cups water, cover and cook until the water is gone. Yum!
I cooked the corned beef according to the package directions: 350 degree oven for two hours, seasoned with the packet in the package. Very simple, easy and gluten free.
The forest service ranger brought us some venison the other day. There are so many deer in this area that they are considered to be garden pests, so if they come into your yard and eat your plants, you are allowed to shoot them, even if deer season is closed. While we don’t hunt, we don’t turn down the meat if it is offered to us.
FabGrandpa’s doctor at the VA put him on Prilosec for acid reflux, and told him he can no longer eat tomatoes, chocolate, spicey foods, or anything with caffeine. Because of that, I had to redo my stew recipe. I have always used tomatoes and tomato paste in my beef stew, so this was an experiment for me. It turned out pretty good.
3-4 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
4-5 cloves garlic, chopped
3-4 stalks celery, chopped
1 1/2 lbs stew meat (I used the venison I was given, you can use beef instead)
1/4 tsp black pepper
4 medium potatoes
32 oz beef broth
Heat the oil in a dutch oven or stew pot. Add the onion, garlic, and celery and sautee until the onions are clear. Meanwhile, sprinkle the tenderizer and seasoned salt generously on the meat. Add to the pot with the sauteed vegetables, and cook until browned on all side. Add the potatoes, carrots, beef broth and pepper. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat to low and simmer for 2-3 hours. Serve with corn bread or biscuits.
I made this and refrigerated overnight. The next day, I took the layer of fat off the top before reheating. This recipe is naturally gluten free, you just have to make sure the package of beef broth is gluten free. Always read your labels!
We had a bag of lucious shrimp in the freezer. I bought it because I wanted to have some black bean and shrimp nachos, but FabGrandpa thought otherwise. He asked if I could make a stir fry with some vegetables instead. A little quick thinking resulted in this:
I decided to fry some of them, too. Fried shrimp is one of those things I used to love to order when we went out to eat, and now is off limits. The whole world uses wheat flour to bread all things fried in restaurants. So, last night I made myself a little treat.
To make the stir fry, I used what I had on hand: a red bell pepper, an onion, some garlic, 1 cup of frozen green beans, and two carrots. I steamed the carrots and green beans in the microwave for a few minutes first, then just sauteed everything in some olive oil until it was done. The only seasoning I used was salt and pepper. Served over rice, it was quite delicious!
For the fried shrimp, I dredged them in corn flour (NOT the same as corn MEAL) and deep fried in some olive oil. A little salt, and yummmmm!
p.s. corn flour is smoother than corn meal. I never knew corn flour existed before I started eating gluten free. I don’t like it in breads, but it is a good alternative for breading things.