Chicken and Dumplings – Yes, Allergy Free.

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Seriously. Yes, you can eat dumplings too.

You probably thought that just because the doctor said no more dairy, wheat and eggs that you would never enjoy chicken and dumplings again.

I am happy to say you thought wrong.

Shall we begin?

You will need for the broth and soup portion of the recipe:

  • One whole roasting chicken
  • 2 boxes chicken broth, such as Pacific brand

First, take the whole roasting chicken and put ‘er in the slow cooker. Sprinkle chicken with a variety of spices.

I used:

  • Basil, Mrs. Dash, garlic, one bay leaf, poultry seasoning, dill weed, cumin, and turmeric.
  • Pour three cups water over the chicken so that most of the spices mingle with the liquid.

Turn on low for 6 hours or for 3 hours on high and walk away.

When you return, this is what will greet you:

When chicken is thoroughly cooked, if you are ready to make your dumplings, turn off the slow cooker and keep the lid on it. Otherwise, keep it on warm until you are about a 1/2 hour away from prepping the dumplings, at which point you can turn it off with the lid still on.

To make your dumpling dough, you will need:

  • 3 C gluten free flour
  • 1 Tb baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup Earth Balance
  • 1/4 cup non dairy milk (I used Silk original unsweetened almond)
  • Water
  • Additional GF flour

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Next cut in the Earth Balance. Add non dairy milk and mix with a mixer. At this point, you will need to add water a bit at a time until your dough resembles the texture of biscuit dough – not too sticky and not too dry. Just *slightly* sticky.

And now it will be ready to roll out to 1/4″ thickness. Be sure to use cornstarch or additional gluten free flour on your rolling surface. Sprinkle more GF flour on your rolling pin and the top of the dough as you go. Just be sure not to work the dough too much.

Next, using a pizza cutter, slice your dough into 1/2″ to 1″ strips lengthwise:

Then across the width, keeping the squares to 1/2″ to 1″ measurements.

Transfer the cut dumplings to a plate. Flour in between the layers. The flour will not only prevent the dumplings from sticking to each other, it will also help thicken the broth.

Next, strain the broth from your chicken into a five quart stock pot. I like to put a colander over the stock pot to catch the chicken and any loose herbs such as bay leaves as I pour the broth into the pot.

Set chicken aside.

Some people like to skim the fat off the chicken broth at this point. I most assuredly do not.

But if that is your thing, go ahead and do that step now.

Next, pour the two boxes of Pacific chicken broth into the stock pot.

Bring broth to a boil.

When broth is at a rolling boil, turn heat down to medium to keep it simmering.

Add the dumplings a few at a time. You don’t want them to stick together. When you get almost to the bottom of the plate, dump the rest in along with any additional flour from the plate.

When the dumplings are all safely nestled in the pot, cover it with a lid and turn down to low. Be sure your broth is still simmering. Keep the pot tightly covered for six minutes.

Meanwhile, strip that chicken of its meat. All of it. Get every little delectable bit off its bones.

Now uncover the pot and let the dumplings simmer for another six minutes.

When the six minutes are up, dump in the chicken and give it all a good stir. Let it all simmer for about another minute.

Turn off the heat and let everything mingle together for about five minutes before serving. Season individual servings with salt and pepper to taste.

The dumplings won’t be exactly as Momma used to make them, but they’ll be pert near close to the real deal.

Once again, here’s the run down if you want to copy and paste the recipe without the pics:

  • One stewing chicken, seasoned and covered in 3 cups water, cooked in a slow cooker.
  • 2 boxes Pacific broth

For the dumplings:

  • 3 cups gluten free flour
  • 1 Tb baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup Earth Balance spread
  • 1/4 cup non dairy milk
  • Water
  • Additional GF flour

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Next cut in the Earth Balance. Add non dairy milk and mix with a mixer. At this point, you will need to add water a bit at a time until your dough resembles the texture of biscuit dough – not too sticky and not too dry. Just *slightly* sticky.

And now it will be ready to roll out to 1/4″ thickness. Be sure to use cornstarch or additional gluten free flour on your rolling surface. Sprinkle more GF flour on your rolling pin and the top of the dough as you go. Just be sure not to work the dough too much.

Next, using a pizza cutter, slice your dough into 1/2″ to 1″ strips. First lengthwise, then across the width.

Transfer the cut dumplings to a plate. Flour in between the layers. The flour will not only prevent the dumplings from sticking to each other, it will also help thicken the broth.

Next, strain the broth from your chicken into a five quart stock pot. I like to put a colander over the stock pot to catch the chicken and any loose herbs such as bay leaves as I pour the broth into the pot.

Set chicken aside.

Pour the two boxes of chicken broth into the stock pot.

Bring broth to a boil.

When broth is at a rolling boil, turn heat down to medium to keep it simmering.

Add the dumplings a few at a time. You don’t want them to stick together. When you get almost to the bottom of the plate, dump the rest in along with any additional flour from the plate.

When the dumplings are all safely nestled in the pot, cover it with a lid and turn down to low. Be sure your broth is still simmering. Keep the pot tightly covered for six minutes.

Meanwhile, strip that chicken of its meat. All of it. Get every little delectable bit off its bones.

Now uncover the pot and let the dumplings simmer for another six minutes.

When the six minutes are up, dump in the chicken and give it all a good stir. Let it all simmer for about another minute.

Turn off the heat and let everything mingle together for about five minutes before serving. Season individual servings with salt and pepper to taste.

 

Happy Evenings of Warm, Comforting Foods!

Chicken and Dumplings recipe copywritten by Jaime Rohm, The Freak Food Gourmet 2012

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Eggless, uh….. Eggnog.

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Yes, you’re right.

It sounds so wrong.

How can it be ‘eggnog’ if it doesn’t have any eggs in it?

If it truly bothers you, then perhaps you can just call it ‘nog’. Or ‘Grog’. Or ‘That really good drink that reminds me of eggnog, yet doesn’t have any eggs in it, so we don’t call it eggnog.’

Well, whatever you call it, it’s the perfect substitute for your childhood favorite Fall and holiday beverage.

And it’s so easy, you’ll be more than pleasantly surprised!

Above photo shamelessly stolen from the Worldwide Web.

Eggless, Dairy Free Eggnog

  • 1 (3.4 oz) pkg french vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 1/2 gallon Silk Almond Milk (I use Original Unsweetened) or your choice milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 2 cups cold milk & pudding mix until smooth.

Add in vanilla, cinnamon & nutmeg. Scrape the bowl to make sure all ingredients are added & mixed thoroughly.

Slowly stir in remaining milk, then transfer eggnog to an air tight container and refrigerate for 30 minutes. It will thicken slightly. Stir before serving.

Serve hot or cold.

NOTE: For those who prefer a thicker drink, increase instant pudding mix to 2 boxes.
Also, I have been assured by the folks over at JELLO brand that their pudding mixes are gluten, soy and dairy free. It is always wise to read the label, though, because ingredients do change from time to time.

Happy Sipping!

Classic Comfort Food: Honey Mustard Chicken

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There’s something about Fall.

Even though we frequently wake up to mornings like this…:

…which signifies the earth going to sleep for a long winter’s nap, there’s something oddly cozy and comforting about the cold, rainy, windy, snowy weather.

Unless you’re my electrician husband who frequently gets stuck doing a six hour wire pull outside in the frigid temperatures. He doesn’t find it very cozy at all.

Which is why I like to have a hot, comforting meal waiting for him when he gets home. And the following is one of his favorites.

Honey Mustard Chicken

  • 1/3 cup Earth Balance, melted
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 3 Tb prepared mustard
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 3 pounds chicken breasts (**I like to filet mine to make them thinner)

Preheat oven to 350. In a greased 9×13 casserole, arrange chicken breasts.

In a bowl, combine all other ingredients and whisk well. Pour over the chicken breasts.

Bake, uncovered, for 1 hour or until meat is no longer pink.

** If you fileted your chicken breasts, your baking time will be reduced to about 40 minutes.

This recipe can also be prepared in a slow cooker. Simply add the ingredients to your crock pot and turn on low for a minimum of six hours.

Serve chicken with rice and a vegetable.

My hubby likes the sauce to mingle and dance with his rice.

Oh, and don’t be jealous of my fine china plates. They were brought out especially for the occasion.

Happy Cozy Fall Days!

Clam Chowder. No Dairy. No Kidding.

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This is what it looked like in my town the other day:

So I made clam chowder.

It was only logical.

And forget everything you’ve ever heard about clam chowder being made with heavy cream and butter.

Because that recipe is so ten years ago.

We all know that the trendy thing to have now is food allergies. So the following recipe will be ‘THE’ way to chowder your clams.

Here is what you’ll need:

One package of this, cut into little pieces, cooked and set aside (Um, yes. The entire package.):

 Silk Almond Original Unsweetened (the unsweetened part is very important):

You’ll also need:

  • Three 6.5 oz cans of clams, drained.

(I used Snow’s, which is free of major allergens. You can also find clams at your local Costco that are free of allergens as well.)

And then go ahead and peel, slice and cube:

  • 8 – 10 medium potatoes

Next, dice into tiny, little pieces:

  • 1-2 ribs of celery
  • 3 green onions

Set your peeled, cubed potatoes, celery and onions in a 4-5 quart stockpot. Add enough water to *just* cover the potatoes.

To the potatoes and water add:

  • 1 clove (or two!) of garlic
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp poultry seasoning (trust me here)
  • 1 tsp crushed, dried basil
  • Any other seasonings you want to throw in. Seriously. That’s how I make mine.

Bring the pot to a boil.

Once your potatoes are fork tender to your desired doneness, turn the heat to medium low. Add your cooked bacon and drained clams to the pot.

Whisk up your 1/2 cup flour with just enough water (almost 1 cup) to make a thick but almost runny base for thickening.

Using a strainer that looks something like this:

… pour your water/flour mixture through the strainer into the simmering pot, stirring constantly. (If you don’t have a strainer that sits over the pot on its own, you may want to add another set of hands to the process. Trust me on this. You will.)

Keep the pot simmering while stirring constantly. As mixture thickens, slowly add Unsweetened Original Silk Almond until the liquid comes to within a few inches of the top of the pot.

  • If you are allergic to almonds, other unsweetened original milk alternatives work as well. I have used hazelnut milk, and it was fantastic.  Just be sure your milk substitute is unsweetened and without any flavorings (vanilla, etc.).

If your chowder is being stubborn about thickening, dilute another 1/4 cup of flour in water and add it slowly to the pot, as before.

And here is our final product (ONCE AGAIN, photographed with my cell phone as it was 7:30 at night. Let’s just say the day involved a certain number of teenagers with sports practice, groceries and a sick sixteen year old man child.):

And one more time, the rundown on the ingredients, just so you don’t miss a thing:

  • 1 package bacon, chopped, cooked up and drained
  • Silk Original Unsweetened Almond milk
  • 8-10 medium potatoes, peeled, cubed
  • 1-2 celery ribs, chopped up in tiny pieces
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • Three 6.5 oz cans clams, drained
  • 1/2 cup gluten free flour
  • 1 clove (or two!) of garlic
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp poultry seasoning
  • 1 tsp crushed, dried basil
  • Any other seasonings you have a hankering about throwing in. Really.

If desired, serve with a dollop of Earth Balance and salt & pepper to taste.

Happy Chilly Days!

Berry Cobbler So Good You’ll Want to Slap Your Momma!

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Slap my….WHAT?

Well, according to Tim Hawkins, you will anyway.

If  you have no idea what I’m talking about, just move right along.

Mooooving riiiight alonnnnggg.

Anyway, the other day I had berries in my freezer and so wanted to cobble them. So I found a recipe and and tweaked it to become my very own cobbling fantasy.

MAN, is it GOOD cobbler!

Let’s just say I am so glad my mother wasn’t here!

Want the recipe? I thought so.

Here you go:

Berry Cobbler (No gluten, dairy, corn, soy or eggs)

  • 2 1/2 cups gluten free flour
  • 1 Tb baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup dairy free milk, such as Silk almond
  • 3/4 cup Earth Balance spread, melted
  • OPTIONAL, but not necessary: One egg (I used one duck egg) *
  • 3  1/2 cups berries, thawed
  • 1 cup sugar OR 2/3 cup agave

Spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray.  Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees.

In a medium bowl, gently stir together the berries and sweetener. Set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Next add the melted Earth Balance and dairy free milk alternative. If desired, add a chicken or duck egg. *(No egg replacer is necessary in this recipe. The egg just gives the cobbler a little more crumb.)

Blend all ingredients together well. If the batter is still thick, add a little water until it *almost* resembles pancake batter: not runny, but not thick like muffin batter. (Sorry, no pictures of the batter. I will insert one the next time I cobble a fruit.)

Transfer your sweetened berries to the pan. Spread the dough mixture evenly over the top of the berries.

Bake in oven for 40 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.

Remove and set on a wire rack to cool.

Serve after allowing the cobbler to sit for about thirty minutes.

(Recipe copywritten by Jaime Rohm, The Freak Food Gourmet)

And then, after serving, rave to each other about just how stinkin’ good it is!

Unless you’re alone.

Then you can rave to no one in particular. Unless you have a hamster. Then you could rave to him, I suppose.

p.s. You won’t be likely to find any ‘pretty’ food pictures on this blog. I believe in reality here. Put that baby in a bowl so I can eat it! Enough with dressing it up like a glorified Barbie doll! Just hand it over and forget the formalities. Reality, people. Reality is the name of my game.

Happy Cobbling Fruit!

Tuna Noodle Casserole Revised: No Dairy, Soy, Gluten or Eggs

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The above picture may not mean much.

Until I explain it, that is. Then it will.

The above photograph shows a child who lists Tuna Noodle Casserole in the top ten of her favorite foods.

That in and of itself is amazing.

She loves broccoli too.  The weirdy.

And said child also does not have one food allergy. That I know of. Yet. Give her time, it will come. She’s mine.

But until then, she willingly eats my allergy free creations without a speck of distaste. I consider her to be one of my most important critics because she eats ‘regular’ food all the time.

Including ‘regular’ Tuna Noodle Casserole.

Since I have a hankering for it from time to time, I decided to make a cheesy, comforting allergy free version.

And now I’m going to share it with you.

Lucky.

Tuna Noodle Casserole – Allergy Free Style

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cook pasta in a large stock pot until al dente (you don’t want it soft or it will be too squishy when baked). Drain.

While the pasta is draining in the colander, in the stock pot, blend together the Vegenaise, Daiya, Almond Milk and seasonings. Stir well. Next add the drained olives, the mushrooms, the peas and the drained tuna. Stir until blended.

Gradually add the cooked pasta to the sauce blend. Do not add all the pasta if it seems like it will overtake the sauce and make the casserole on the dry side.

Spray a 9×13 glass casserole dish with cooking spray (or oil it with your choice of oil) and dump in your saucy pasta concoction.

Bake uncovered for 15-20 minutes or until casserole is bubbly and the top is a LIGHT golden brown.

You can also top with crushed gluten free crackers the last five minutes of baking, if desired.

***If soy is not an issue for you, substitute a 1/2 cup of the Vegenaise with a 1/2 cup of Tofutti Sour Cream, if desired.

Happy Fishing for Comfort Foods!

♫♫ Imagine all the Souuuuups and the Tasty Stews…♫♫

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If I were a betting woman (I’m not…not even the one dollar scratch game lottery tickets. I am not making this up.) I would be willing to bet you want to make stew and soups with delicious beef broth.

But you don’t.

Because you cannot have yeast. Or gluten. Or any number of other ingredients traditionally found in beef broths.

Until now.

Because our friends over at Imagine Foods have created some mighty tasty broths which contain no yeast, gluten, dairy, egg, corn or other nasty critters that interfere with your allergy health.

They also make an array of creamy soups that are nice for making chicken and rice bakes. Some of the creamy variety unfortunately are made with soy milk, so be careful to read the ingredients.

I also absolutely LOVE their tomato soup:

This is the only commercially made tomato soup I have found that is not only free of gluten, but free of dairy, soy and yeast as well! It is a little acidic, so if you like your tomato soup creamier, simply add an unsweetened milk alternative of your choice as you stir it to heat on the stove.

Sure, I can make my own, but it is so nice to have a box of this in the pantry on those cold, blustery days.

And along with a loaf of this bread:

And a container of Earth Balance:

And a small serving of Daiya:

I’m set to enjoy a nice, steaming bowl of tomato soup along with my ‘buttery’, scrumptious grilled ‘cheese’ sandwich.

Food allergies?

Psssshhh. Not a problem.

 

Happy Imagining the Possibilities!

 

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