Monday, May 24, 2010

Gluten-Free, Egg-Free Biscuit Recipe

We like to make biscuits around here. I grew up making biscuits with my mother and on occasion with my grandmother who never measured a single ingredient. She went by the way the dough looked and felt between her fingertips. That's the way to make biscuits. The art of making biscuits may take some practice but the results are worth it! The following recipe is one of a few I have created. This one is a spin-off of a recipe in my cookbook using sorghum flour in place of the brown rice flour with a few other minor changes.

Tips for making Gluten-Free Biscuits:
  • Be sure your butter, palm shortening, or coconut oil is cold!
  • Real butter gives the best flavor and texture and is what I used in the gluten-free biscuits pictured here. Be sure to use organic butter! :)
  • I always make sure the milk I am using has been chilled for at least 2-3 hours.
  • Handle the dough as little as possible! Even though there is no gluten in the dough to over-develop, working with the dough too much causes it to become dense.
  • If your kitchen is too hot and your fat begins to melt as you work it into the flour, place the whole bowl into the fridge to chill and reconvene when the fat has chilled.
  • Instead of cutting the dough into circles, simply form dough into a rectangle and cut into 16 squares with a large knife. This creates much less handling of the dough.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Spring Herb Quinoa Salad with Dandelion Greens and Peas

Light, refreshing, and full of Spring's intoxicating flavors. Rosemary, thyme, oregano, and chives. Fresh dandelion greens, peas, and lemon. This quinoa salad is balanced and uber nutritious. I've added salmon and sheep's feta but it can be made vegan too. In fact, once you have the quinoa cooked and tossed with the simple herb dressing below, the options for creativity are endless.

Quinoa is naturally gluten-free and one of our favorite grains. It is high in protein, antioxidants, fiber, and complex carbohydrates. We cook it at least twice a week. I love that it cooks up in only 15 to 20 minutes! Here is a tip for cooking quinoa (actually most grains): Be sure to bring the quinoa to a boil when it first goes on the stove and then it bring down to a simmer. If it doesn't boil first, the quinoa can end up mushy and the grains stuck together.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Strawberry-Almond Smoothie (dairy-free)

Back to the blog at last! I am sharing with you today one of our favorite high protein smoothies, without protein powder! Soaked raw almonds: one of nature's most digestible vegan protein sources. We've probably made every variation under the sun when it comes to a soaked almond smoothie, but since it is spring, it is time for the Strawberry Almond Smoothie to make an appearance on this blog.

Soaking raw almonds for about 8 hours in a small bowl of water causes them to soften considerably and plump up. Our kids take much delight in popping the almonds out of their skins and eating them. Basically, you take the amount of almonds you desire, place them into a bowl and cover with about and inch of pure water. If you are planning on making your own homemade raw almond milk, this is how you would begin. For this smoothie I simply drain and rinse the almonds after they have soaked overnight and blend with water until very smooth. If you are making almond milk you would strain the pulp through cheesecloth, but for this smoothie we leave all of the good fiber in the blender and add frozen fruit, blend again, and voila ~ a high protein, nutrient dense smoothie!