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Archive for the ‘Gluten-free’ Category

I first made these cookies in the 45 minutes I had before our dinner guests arrived, when I realized I didn’t have anything for dessert.  I took this biscuit recipe (originally from PaleoinPDX) and madly made some adjustments, without measuring the cacao.

My guests, and my family, loved them immediately, unanimously, and without reservation.

I made them again (approximately, since I still hadn’t measured the cacao) for another occasion, and was begged for the recipe.  By request, I made again them for two friends’ birthdays, and then my pastor tried them and fell in love blessed them.  This was getting ridiculous.  It was obviously time to make this an official Farmers Taft recipe!

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Double Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies (Gluten-Free)

Makes 24 cookies.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 1/2 c. blanched almond flour
  • 2 T. coconut flour
  • 1/2 c. raw cacao powderIMG_20130907_231716
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 3/4 t. sea salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 T. butter, melted
  • 2 T. coconut oil, melted
  • 1/3 c. honey
  • 1 c. chocolate chips
  • Sugar for tops (optional)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine almond flour, coconut flour, cacao powder, baking soda, and sea salt.
  3. In a smaller bowl, combine eggs, butter, coconut oil, and honey.
  4. Stir wet mixture into dry mixture.
  5. Stir in chocolate chips.
  6. Drop spoonfuls of dough onto baking sheet.  Flatten with the bottom of a glass dipped in sugar.
  7. Bake for 14 minutes at 350 degrees F.  Let cool completely, and enjoy!

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After the kids went to bed tonight, I tossed together some almond flour berry muffins.  The recipe is from Elana Amsterdam’s (of Elana’s Pantry) wonderful paleo book, The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook.  I doubled and modified her delicious Chocolate Chip Banana Cake recipe to omit the honey, and used frozen mixed berries instead of chocolate chips.

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Banana-Berry Muffins

INGREDIENTSMuffin Close up

  • 3 c. blanched almond flour
  • 1/2 t. sea salt
  • 1 t. baking soda
  • 1/4 c. coconut oil, melted
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 T. vanilla extract
  • 1 c. frozen mixed berries
  • 1/2 c. (about 1-2) ripe bananas, mashed

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Arrange silicone muffin liners on a baking sheet.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the almond flour, sea salt, and baking soda.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the liquid coconut oil, eggs, bananas, and vanilla extract.
  4. Stir the wet ingredients into the almond flour mixture until thoroughly combined.
  5. Fold in the mixed berries and fill each muffin liner about 2/3 full.
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.

After I was done making the kids’ lunches, I made mine.  I had some leftover celery sticks that didn’t fit in their lunches, so I put them in a container to take to work.  I decided I wanted some ranch dressing to dip it in.  While humming Rubber Ducky, I pondered my day and set about gathering ingredients.

Mid-hum, I realized that I’d assembled these ingredients, mindlessly and effortlessly, within seconds:

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Without a recipe, without looking anything up in a book, just … experience, in my fingertips.  Holy cow.  I think I might be getting the hang of this real food thing.  Within another couple of minutes, I had this:

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A few whips later and I had my celery dip:

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So Monday started out being a full-on pain in the ass, but after leaving work and as the evening wore on, I had a pretty awesome Monday.

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These are one of my favorite lunch items. I make the tuna salad and pack my romaine leaves in a ziplock the night before, so I can just grab my lunch bag and head out the door in the morning. Enjoy!

Tuna Salad Boats

Makes 4 leafy green boats of happiness2013-01-20 14.07.54

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 romaine leaves, washed and dried, thicker stem ends cut off
  • 1 can of tuna, drained and flaked
  • 1 stalk of celery, chopped finely
  • 1 T. dried currants
  • 8-10 crispy almonds, chopped (here’s a recipe for how and why to use soaked and dehydrated nuts)
  • 1/4 c. olive oil mayonnaise, plus or minus, depending on your tastes (here’s a great recipe, with video!)
  • salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS

  1. Combine all ingredients EXCEPT the romaine leaves and mix well.
  2. Fill the romaine leaves with the tuna filling, holding like a soft taco.  Proceed to “mmmmm” and “ahhhhhh” over the devastating, tiny hits of sweet from the currants, the crunch from the celery and almonds, and the silky, savory, and healthy olive oil mayonnaise tying it all together.

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You know, going grain-free/gluten-free has not been hard.  I suppose we were about 90% of the way there since we’d already cut out pastas, crackers, most breads, and all other processed products containing white flour and refined sugar.  The thing that I was leaning on pretty heavily for my kids’ lunches (and my own, as work started intruding on my evenings at home and cutting into making-lunches time the last few months) was sprouted 7-grain bread.  I felt ok about buying it not only because it contained sprouted grains, but also because it is a local company.  But something always niggled at me.  We had cut out so many other easy grab-and-go processed foods, but we still grabbed the sprouted bread on *every* grocery trip.  At the beginning of 2013, almost exactly a year into our whole foods/SOLE foods (Sustainable, Organic, Local, Ethical) diet changes, I finally confronted the ingredients label without my rose-colored glasses.  Can you see the problem?

Ingredients:  Whole sprouted grains of red wheat berries, oat groats, rye berries, barley, corn, rice, millet, wheat flour, water, wildflower light amber honey, vital wheat gluten, yeast, molasses, salt.

If you’re a glammed-up over-processed nuritionally-deficient waist-expanding health-deteriorating junk food, please take one step forward.  Why, hello, “wheat flour”.  Yeah.  “Wheat flour” or “enriched wheat flour” is plain old white flour, wearing spanky clean pre-frayed jeans and a reproduction vintage T and trying to blend in with the newly-hip crunchy crowd.

After confronting the poser, I sighed and decided to go gluten-free, and while I was at it, grain free.  We’ve been leaning more and more towards paleo anyways so it wasn’t a big leap.  Since cutting out lunch sandwiches, my cheese consumption has gone way down, too, which was about the only dairy product (besides butter) that I was eating with any regularity.  Not that I have anything against dairy.  I have no problem with the occasional glass of milk or dish of yogurt, or a few slices of cheese.  It’s just not part of my daily or even weekly diet right now.  This isn’t rigid adherence to paleo/GAPS/any other prescribed food guidelines.  I am just actively listening to my body’s responses to what I feed it, and gently, respectfully isolating food experiences in order to hear its response more clearly.  The more I do that, the more it tells me exactly how to feed it best.  Right now it’s telling me that dairy is not desired or needed, simple as that.  Maybe it’s a winter thing, or a hormonal thing, or – who knows?  As always, I guess I’ll know more tomorrow.

All that said, here’s the delicious recipe for Almond Flour Biscuits that I used (thank you PaleoinPDX!) and a few pics of our delicious sandwiches.

Almond Flour Biscuits

Makes 12 biscuits

Ingredients2013-01-19 12.56.27

  • 2-1/2 c. blanched almond flour
  • 2 T. coconut flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1/2 t. sea salt
  • 1/4 c. melted ghee, butter or coconut oil (I used coconut oil)
  • 3 T. honey

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix dry ingredients together in large bowl.
  3. Add the eggs, melted ghee and honey. Mix well until all the ingredients are incorporated.
  4. Drop large tablespoons of batter onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a greased baking sheet.
  5. Run a wet hand or spoon over each biscuit to smooth out and flatten a bit.  They get larger in diameter as they bake, but not much higher.
  6. Bake for 12-15 minutes until they’re nicely browned.  I like to bake them for about 12 minutes in a normal oven, then put them on convection for 2 more minutes, to brown them up nicely.  These are better overdone than underdone, so go with your instincts.

When the biscuits are done, make a delicious bacon, tomato, and avocado sandwich using two of the biscuits.  Enjoy!

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This is not your grandma’s pumpkin pie.

Your grandma’s pumpkin pie, if made traditionally from the back of the pumpkin pie filling can and served with whipped topping, would have contained somewhere in the area of an insulin-spiking 45 grams of carbs per slice (1/8 pie being a serving).  That is almost half of the most you should eat in an entire day.  Ouch.

This recipe, which I’ve decided is 12 servings (a smaller slice of pie satisfies more quickly with healthy fats and without the insulin-triggered sugar cravings), comes out to around 17 grams of carbs per serving.  That’s more like it!

As I’ve mentioned on my Facebook page and on last week’s School Lunch Boxes post, I’m currently reading the book Trick and Treat by Barry Groves.  Right now I’m about halfway through and reading about how carbs trigger insulin and how people become insulin-resistant over time by eating too many carbs.  Insulin resistance is basically cells telling the insulin to go to hell and store fat elsewhere, like on your butt.  Groves goes into depth on how insulin interacts with cells in regards to storing energy within cells that can be used quickly, or energy stored as fat.  Additionally, he says that the kind of fat and how much fat you eat along with the carbs also plays a part.  It seems that if you eat good fat (saturated and monounsaturated) along with carbs, a sufficient amount of leptin is also released into your system, which helps the cells and insulin work together to prevent insulin-resistance.

In other words, carbs eaten in moderation (less than 100 grams per day) and eaten along with saturated and monounsaturated fats will go a long ways towards enabling your body’s built-in magic to optimally regulate its fat storage – without having to pay attention to calories.

In OTHER other words, this pumpkin pie with whipped cream could be the first step into getting you back into your skinny jeans.

Questions, comments, scathing rebuttals?  The doctor is in.

Pumpkin Pie with Whipped Cream

Serves 12

INGREDIENTS

Crust

  • 1/2 c. almonds
  • 1 c. pecans
  • 1/4 c. coconut flour
  • 4 T. melted organic grass fed butter
  • 1/2 t. cinnamon
  • 1/2 t. sea salt

Filling

  • 1 – 14oz can of plain, unsweetened pumpkin puree
  • 2 t. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 t. nutmeg
  • 1/4 t. ginger
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 c. sweetener of your choice (honey, maple syrup, and raw cane sugar would be my choices)
  • 1 c. coconut cream

Whipped Cream

  • 2 c. coconut cream
  • 1 T. raw honey
  • 1 t. vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS

  1. First thing you want to do is to get the stuff cooling for the whipped cream.  Pour the coconut cream into the mixing bowl you’ll be using.  Place the bowl and your mixer’s whip attachment into the freezer.
  2. Preheat oven to 350. Place the nuts in a food processor and process until the nuts are as fine as you’d like them to be in the crust. Pour into a small mixing bowl, add the butter and salt and mix into a thick dough. Using your hands, spread evenly into a pie pan.  Don’t go as far up the sides as you would for a traditional pumpkin pie because this one doesn’t rise as far. Bake for 10 minutes.
  3. While the crust is in the oven, whisk all of the pie filling ingredients together.  Pour into the crust that has been baked for 10 minutes, return to the oven and bake for and additional 45 minutes.  Let cool at room temperature for at least an hour before serving.
  4. While the pie is baking, retrieve the mixing bowl, coconut cream, and beater out of the freezer.  Add the vanilla and honey to the bowl, attach the beater to the mixer, and beat on high until it reaches the consistency you like.  For me it took a little longer to whip up into peaks than dairy whipping cream.

Enjoy!

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