Saturday, November 20, 2010

Nut'n Glutens 1st Anniversary Sale

Today is a great gluten free day!
Nut'N Gluten, one of my favourite places to buy great gluten free food, is celebrating their 1st Anniversary. They are celebrating with a 10% off all purchases this weekend, Saturday November 20th, 2010 9:00am-6:00pm and again on Sunday November 21, 2010 11:00am-5:00pm. I see this as a great opportunity to stock up on our personal favourites as I am a frequent shopper at this store. Our favourites include the Molly B bagels, the plain variety, and the gnocchi (that's right, I said gnocchi!!!!!) This store is family owned and they take alot of care in helping out the gluten free (and nut free) community. I always feel grateful when I go into this store and pleased with my purchases when I leave.
If you live in the Greater Toronto Area and haven't been to Nut'N Gluten yet, this weekend's 10% off sale is a good reason to go check it out. You won't be disappointed!
They are located at 3120 Rutherford Road, which is Rutherford Rd just west of Jane Street.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Gluten Free Minestrone Soup

This recipe is one that I used at a Gluten Free Italian Cooking Class that I did with Marni Wasserman earlier this year. Marni is a Natural Chef and Holistic Nutritionist in the Greater Toronto Area. Her recipes and ideas are healthy and delicious and the cooking classes were enjoyed by all.
You can see more of Marni's great recipes and thoughts on her website at
I made this New Age Minestrone Soup, along with the Pesto Pasta and Tofu Cacciatore, 2 other recipes included in this cooking class, for my family for dinner tonight.
These recipes are so healthy and I feel like we got a whole days worth of nutrients in dinner alone!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Gluten Free Eggplant Parmesan

Tonight, I have made 2 different recipes for eggplant parmesan.
I'm not even sure if my family likes eggplant, but the eggplant looked so wonderful at the market the other day I had to try it! I bought the small variety, one was a dark purple and the other is light purple and cream colour. I was told they taste the same, so I will use them interchangeably.
These are not original recipes, they are ones I found on the internet. I use recipes that I have all the ingredients on hand and ingredients I know my family likes.
Recipe #1
1 1/2 pounds eggplant
1 1/2 cups almond flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
2 tablespoon olive oil
3 cups tomato sauce
2 cups freshly grated mozzarella cheese (I use the light mozzarella)
1/4 cups freshly grated parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350F.
Cut the eggplant into 1/4 inch slices.
In a medium bowl, combine the almond flour and salt.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and water.
Dip the eggplant slices in the egg mixture, then in the almond flour mixture.
Heat the grapeseed and olive oils in a large skillet over medium heat.
Saute the eggplant for 5 minutes per side, until golden brown.
Transfer the eggplant to a paper towel-lined plate.
Pour 1 cup of the tomato sauce into a 13x9 inch baking dish.
Layer the eggplant over the sauce.
Cover the eggplant with 1 cup of the sauce and 1 cup of mozzarella.
Place the remaining eggplant over the top, then cover with the remaining sauce and mozzarella.
Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the edges are bubbling.
Remove from the oven and top with grated parmesan cheese before serving.

Recipe #2
I'm not going to include this recipe because it was more time consuming and not a winner with my family!!!!!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Great Gluten Free Pizza Restaurant

We enjoyed a wonderful dinner last night from a family owned restaurant that has a full gluten free menu. I think the most exciting part of dinner is when the pizza arrives in a regular style pizza box, only it says GLUTEN FREE PIZZA on it! The toppings we chose to put on the pizza were brocolli and mushroom. The crust looks and smells like the crust we used to have before we were gluten free. We freeze the leftovers and use it for pizza days at school.
We also ordered the gluten free veal dinner which was veal with tomato sauce and cheese melted on top. It was served with a baked potato and a side of pickles and olives. We put a greek salad with it as well, not because there wasn't enough food, but just because we could!
The restaurant sent along a gluten free dessert for us to try as well. It was a Chocolate Peanut Butter Square made by I Can't Believe It's Gluten Free. It was delicious as well and complemented the meal perfectly!
It was so nice to have a gluten free meal from a restaurant that was so tasty and included everything; the entree, a side dish, and dessert. This family has gone out of their way to cater to the gluten free community and we are so very grateful.
In my daughter's own words, "yesterday night I had an amazing veal dinner and an amazing pizza, from a place called Tops In Pizza. It was the best veal I'd ever had,and the best pizza I'd ever had. It's in Orilla but it's worth the trip."
Other choices on the gluten free menu include caesar salad, chicken dinner, chicken wings, BBQ ribs, and more.
I can only describe this food experience as LIBERATING! (and delicious)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Hillcrest Farmer's Market Closes For The Winter

Today I went to one of my favourite markets for the last time this season. They close for the winter, so I will have to go back to shopping for produce at my local supermarket. I did stock up on fresh Ontario produce; potatoes, onions, Ambrosia apples, mini cucumbers, peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and carrots. This should keep me busy cooking healthy meals for a least a couple of weeks! It's important to store the produce properly so it doesn't go bad.
The farmers told me to store the food in a cool, dry, dark place. It is to be kept in paper bags or cardboard boxes or mesh bags, nothing plastic. I put most of it in my basement because it is the coolest, dryest, darkest place in my house.
I plan on making homemade tomato sauce, eggplant parmigian, and stir fry!
There are markets that stay open year round so I will have to find one I like as much as this one.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Gluten Free Pumpkin Cookies

I found this recipe a couple of years ago. It is called a cookie but it is more like a muffin top. In fact, when I eat it, I feel like I'm in that Seinfeld episode about muffin tops!!!! Anyways, either way, whether you consider them a cookie or a muffin top, they are delicious (and healthy!).
The recipe is as follows;
First you have to roast a pumpkin and get it ready to use in the recipe.
Preheat oven to 375F.
Cut the pumpkin in half or a few big chunks, which ever is easier to manage.
Place them in a shallow baking dish covered with foil, face down with a bit of water.
Cook for about 50 minutes or until tender.
Allow the pumpkin to cool and peel.
Discard the skins and mash the pumpkin with a potato masher.

If you don't want to go through the work with the real pumpkin, or the stores are out of stock, you can always use canned pumpkin with equally tasty results.

1 stick of butter, melted
1 cup packed light brown sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup pumpkin puree (as prepared from directions above)
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cloves (optional)
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 2/3 cup of gluten free flour mix (I used Bob's Red Mill All Purpose Gluten free flour and a heaping 1/4 teaspoon of xanthan gum as recommended by Bob's Red Mill).

Preheat oven to 350F.
In a large bowl, combine butter and brown sugar. Mix in the egg, vanilla, and pumpkin puree.
In a small bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and spices.
Combine the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, in the large bowl, until blended.
Drop heaping tablespoon mounds of batter on parchment-lined cookie sheet, and bake for about 12 minutes, or until springy to the touch.
Cool completely on a cooling rack, if you are able to wait.
Makes about 2 dozen. Enjoy!!!!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Martha Stewart's Gluten Free Banana Walnut Muffins

I spent the day in the kitchen yesterday making healthy banana walnut muffins, a recipe I found in the Healthy Living Fit To Eat section of a Martha Stewart magazine. It is time consuming blending the various gluten free flours but you can do this ahead of time or make a double batch.

The recipe is as follows:

1 1/4cups brown rice flour
1/2 cup toasted walnuts, finely ground
1/2 cup potato starch
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs, separated
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/2 cups mashed overripe bananas (3-4)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with baking cups. Whisk together brown rice flour, ground walnuts, potato starch, tapioca flour, baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt. Whisk together yolks, oil, sugar, bananas, and vanilla. Fold flour mixture into banana mixture.
2. Whisk whites until stiff peaks form. Working in 3 batches, fold whites into batter. Fill each baking cup with batter. Bake until light golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean, 22 to 24 minutes. Let cool sitlghtly. Turn out muffins onto a wire rack, and let cool completely.
I freeze them once they are cool so they stay fresh and I can take them out as I need them.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Gluten Free Mexican Night

The entree for tonight's Mexican-style dinner is called the Southwestern Bake. It is full of great, healthy vegetables such as corn, black beans, green onions, and tomatoes, but has the Mexican flare with ingredients that include Tostitos, salsa, and sour cream.
It was a cold night, one of the first for the season, so I added chicken soup to the menu.
A creative fall menu would not be complete without pomegranate, so I served that as well.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

November 4, 2010 Dinner Tonight

Every night is a challenge when you want to make healthy meals for your family that are gluten free and something the whole family will enjoy.
Tonight's dinner was show-stopping maple-glazed salmon on a bed of spinach with browned-butter maple syrup sweet potato. As we speak, the pumpkin seeds are roasting!