Gluten-Free Recipes for Holiday



Lemon Snowballs

January 30, 2020

From Chef Oonagh Williams of Gluten-Free Cooking with Oonagh

No, this isn’t a Girl Scout cookie lookalike recipe. These lemon snowballs actually came from a 1997 Lithuanian Heritage magazine. They were originally made with wheat, and I made them gluten-free. These are delicious and easy to make!

Gluten-Free Lemon Snowballs
Makes 20

Ingredients:

  • ¼ c powdered/icing/confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/2 cup soft butter
  • 1 tsp gluten-free vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp gluten-free cornstarch in one cup measure, add
  • 5 oz (140 g) King Arthur all-purpose gluten-free flour blend to fill one cup. (this blend doesn’t contain xanthan gum or baking powder. Adding cornstarch is a way of softening the flour blend, more melt in the mouth and tender, and a substitute for cake flour.)
  • ½ c finely chopped, toasted almonds, pecans or walnuts. Bake nuts for 10-15 minutes in 350 oven, watch they don’t burn. Let them cool before you add them to dough. 
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ – ½ tsp xanthan gum. 
  • powdered sugar to finish
  • Zest or orange or lemon for flavor, optional

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 350*F.
  2. Beat 1/4 cup powdered sugar, butter and vanilla (and zest) together until light and fluffy.
  3. Add flour with cornstarch, xanthan gum, chopped nuts and salt and gently mix until soft dough forms.
  4. Shape into 1 inch balls.  I use small pampered chef cookie scoop about 1+1/4 inch diameter, 1 Tbsp quantity.  Number 60 should be carved onto circle that cleans cookie dough from scoop. Scoop, clean against side of bowl and drop cookie onto ungreased cookie sheet, two inches apart. I like to line cookie sheet with parchment paper.   I don’t bother to roll cookie into ball shape. They flatten slightly on baking, refrigerating before baking doesn’t keep the ball shape.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes until light golden brown on the outside, still almost white in the body of the cookie but set to the touch.  Don’t cook until brown all over, tastes disgusting. This is meant to be like a melt in your mouth shortbread.
  6. Remove from oven, remove from cookie sheets, cool slightly and heavily dust with sieved powdered sugar. I find when hot they are far too fragile to pick up. Cool completely.
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TAGS: DESSERT, HOLIDAY


Flourless Chocolate Cake

From Chef Oonagh Williams of Gluten-Free Cooking with Oonagh

Over Christmas, we had dinner at one of our favorite restaurants. The menu had a flourless chocolate cake with macerated strawberries (sliced strawberries with sugar and liqueur usually) plus strawberry sauce and whipped cream. The waitress confirmed it was gluten-free, but don’t just trust a description of flourless to mean it’s safely gluten-free. We bought one to bring home and share. The cake part was a bit bigger than standard cupcake size but only tasted of bitter cocoa. Just cocoa doesn’t meet my criteria for a chocolate cake. So I made this version instead to satisfy our craving…

Gluten-Free Flourless Chocolate Cake

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz soft butter or melted coconut oil 
  • 2 oz gluten-free, semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 4 oz sugar 
  • 4 oz gluten-free almond flour
  • 3 large eggs 
  • 2 tbsp gluten-free cocoa 
  • 1 tsp gluten-free almond extract 
  • 1 tsp gluten-free baking powder 
  • pinch of salt 

Directions:

  1. Cake: Preheat oven to 350*F. Spray 1 x 9” springform pan, line base with parchment paper and dust with cocoa. For individual portions, use either regular cupcake liners in cupcake pan or larger Texas muffins for indulgence. Melt chocolate and butter/coconut oil together until the chocolate is totally smooth.
  2. Put rest of cake ingredients in 8 cup bowl, add melted chocolate mix and beat for 2-3 minutes until fluffy. 
  3. Spread mix in springform pan or divide up between cupcake liners. Bake in 350 oven for about 30 minutes for cake, 18-20 for cupcakes depending on the size chosen. Cake will still be soft but a knife in the middle of the cake will be clean.
  4. Remove from oven, let cake cool for about 10 minutes then turn onto a cooling rack. Allow cupcakes to cool completely then when ready to serve, remove from paper liners.

Strawberry topping and liquor sauce:

Wash and slice strawberries, sprinkle with sugar and leave for a few hours for sugar to produce juices. You can add 1-2 tbsp brandy, rum, amaretto, orange liqueur to strawberries. 

1 cup of cream with 2 tbsp sugar and 1-2 Tbsp liqueur, whipped until stiff.

For individual cakes, I spoon some of the strawberries on top of upside-down cake per plate, pour off some of the juices from strawberries in tub and puree remaining strawberries and juice.  You can add back in juice if sauce is too thick, but you can’t easily add to a thin sauce. Puddle the cake with pureed sauce and pipe with cream. (see photo). Also try fresh raspberries with frozen raspberry and raspberry jam sauce, canned peaches. 

For after Christmas neighborhood party, I made 9-inch cake, cut into wedges.  I added water, brown sugar and rum to can of cut up sliced pineapple and thickened slightly.  I poured sauce into bowl in center of plate of sliced cake. (see photo).

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TAGS: DESSERT, HOLIDAY, RECIPES OF THE WEEK


Coffee Walnut Cake

December 2, 2019

From Chef Oonagh Williams of Gluten-Free Cooking with Oonagh

This is the same almond flour base I made in wheat flour days. Almond flour cakes are very common in Europe and naturally gluten-free. 

Gluten-Free Cake with Coffee & Walnuts

  • Cake – single 8″ cake layer about 3/4 inch deep, with coffee butter frosting. 
  • 6 tbsp (3 oz, 84g) very soft butter or coconut oil. I use coconut oil as my butter substitute in baking and prefer it to margarine style subs.
  • 1+1/4 cup (4oz, 112g)  almond flour – almonds ground without skin (Trader Joe’s on line state that their almond flour -white – and almond meal – freckly – are gluten free and only $4.99/lb compared to other national brands except for Costco $4/lb for 3 lb bag, labeled gluten-free)
  • 1/3 c (2oz, 56 g) toasted, chopped walnuts. I toast contents of a bag of chopped walnuts in 350 oven for about 10 minutes and then store them, ready to use. Toasting nuts really does make a difference, just don’t let them burn.
  • 3/4 c, (6 oz, 180 g) sugar  
  • 2 Tbsp (30 ml) instant coffee powder dissolved in 1 tbsp (15ml) water – regular Folger’s
  • pinch of salt
  • 1+1/2 tsp (8 ml) gluten-free baking powder 
  • no xanthan gum needed
  • 3 eggs  
  • Frosting/Buttercream:
  • 1/2 cup/1 stick (4 oz, 112g) soft butter or butter substitute you like
  • 1 tsp instant coffee powder dissolved in 2 tsp water. 
  • 2 c (8 oz, 224g) powdered (icing, confectioners) sugar

More toasted walnuts to sprinkle on top of frosting. 

  1. Preheat oven to 350*F/170*C. Lightly grease and bottom line 8”  pan with parchment paper circle, dust with rice flour. 
  2. Place all the cake ingredients in a 4 cup, 1-litre bowl and beat for 1-2 minutes until smooth and creamy. Color will lighten slightly but will still be coffee-colored.
  3. Spoon raw batter into prepared pan and smooth out. 
  4. Bake in preheated oven for about 30 minutes until cake has risen, softly firm is dark golden brown  If you use almond meal/natural almond flour (almonds ground with skin still on) then cake will be even darker.
  5. Remove from oven, cool in pan for about 3 minutes, then turn out onto cake serving plate, remove paper lining and then turn right side up.

Frosting/Buttercream:

  1. I like to sieve the powdered sugar as it is often lumpy and it’s easier to sift first then try and beat little white lumps out of frosting.
  2. Slowly add powdered sugar to very soft butter and coffee. Be careful, the sugar has a tendency to explode up. Once all sugar is added, beat well for 1-2 minutes to make fluffy.
  3. This quantity of frosting is enough to generously top cake and pipe around edges. Then sprinkle with more toasted walnuts.

Variations:

  1. Whipped Cream. Whip 1 cup of cream with 2 tablespoons powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of Kahlua or rum until stiff.  This can be used to frost cake instead of buttercream frosting. Or just serve on the side.
  2. Regular chocolate ganache with Kahlua or rum added. 

1 c (8 oz, 240 ml) heavy or whipping cream

1 c (6oz, 168g)) Nestle semi-sweet chocolate chips -labeled gluten-free.

2-4 tbsp (30-60ml)  Kahlua or rum. Depending on the alcohol content of the chosen liqueur, this can taste quite strong.

Heat 1 cup of whipping or heavy cream to nearly boiling, add chocolate chips and stir. Let stand for a few minutes, then stir and microwave more if necessary until a totally smooth sauce is formed (looks like thick chocolate syrup). You can also use an immersion blender to make the sauce totally smooth.

Add alcohol and refrigerate for several hours until stiffer than set jello pudding.

I like to lightly whisk half of chilled ganache and gently persuade over top of cake and it will start drizzling down the sides. Then whisk remaining ganache and pipe on top of cake. Ganache is very soft if served immediately, piped chocolate will set up stiffer with refrigeration.  

3. Fruit. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 2 tablespoons of light brown sugar, add slices of fresh or canned pineapple and gently fry until starting to brown on edges.  Pour 2 tablespoons of rum into a measuring cup, then pour into skillet, allow to heat for about 20 seconds and use gas grill lighter to ignite the alcohol fumes. Make sure there are no children or animals around.  Do not lean over pan, keep hair out of the way. Allow flames to die down and serve on side of cake. In the summer just grill some pineapple slices.

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TAGS: DESSERT, HOLIDAY, THANKSGIVING


Wine & Rosemary Beef

From Chef Oonagh Williams of Gluten-Free Cooking with Oonagh

Heading into the Holiday season and then other get-togethers, I wanted an entrée easily made, with easily available ingredients. And then I saw packets of roasted, vacuum packed, organic chestnuts in my local chain grocery store. My father always made a chestnut stuffing to go with the roast turkey.  London at Christmas with gleaming bright Christmas lights across the streets and in shop windows on Oxford Street and all the other street names you recognize. Braziers of roast chestnuts giving off light and heat on a winter’s night, trying to peel a hot chestnut with gloves on and then burning your tongue with the lovely flavor are special memories.

I’ve always made my beef stroganoff with sirloin steak. Traditionally it’s made with beef tenderloin/fillet steak and cooks in minutes, but you need to take out a mortgage for the recipe for a party and also count on being able to get well butchered, matured beef for flavor and tenderness. Beef Stroganoff is a very popular recipe with students and clients and one I have to always cook for certain clients. If you decide on this for a party, buy the beef sirloin when it’s on sale, trim it of fat, cut it up yourself rather than have the butcher do it and freeze ready to make a day or two in advance of the party. The flavor does develop and mellow if made in advance and helps you keep your sanity knowing another dish is prepared. 

Gluten-Free Wine & Rosemary Beef
6-8 portions when served as part of a meal with other dishes

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs boneless beef sirloin, trimmed. Slice into thin slices about 2-3” long x 1” wide x1/4”-1/2” thick. 
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 2 Tbsp butter or olive oil 
  • ¾ cup orange juice 
  • ¾ c Marsala wine 
  • ¾ cup gluten-free chicken stock
  • Zest of one orange, and then remove peel/skin of orange, segment and use for garnish
  • 4 x 4-inch stalks of fresh rosemary.
  • 2 3.5oz bags of cooked, peeled chestnuts
  • ½ 10 or 12 oz tub of fresh mushrooms  
  • Cornstarch to thicken, as needed
  • Salt and pepper
  • Chopped fresh parsley

Directions:

  1. Melt butter/olive oil in 8 cup pan and gently cook onions and garlic until translucent. This sweetens the onions and garlic.
  2. Turn up heat, add beef strips, and sauté beef strips until evenly brown or seared. 
  3. Add marsala wine, orange juice, chicken stock, orange zest, rosemary stalks, salt and ground pepper, stir well, turn temp to as low as possible. Cover pan and simmer for at least 20 minutes until beef is tender. This can take up to 45 minutes depending on quality of sirloin, size of pieces and pan used.  Use your slow cooker if you have one for cooking and reheating. (5 lb sirloin plus everything fits in 6 qt slow cooker and is great for a party, when I serve it with bacon and smoked Gouda risotto, not pasta.  Pasta tends to slide around the plate and drop on the carpet or clothes if you are standing to eat.)

Check that the pan is cooking at the lowest possible heat otherwise all the juices will evaporate away, leaving a dry mass. Add ½-1 c water if going dry.

I have also made this with Angus beef bottom round, labeled for a pot roast. Cut off heavy fat, and cut into small cubes. Roughly 2 hours in 350 oven or 30 minutes in pressure cooker once it comes to pressure. 

  1. Once meat is tender, increase heat, add mushrooms and quickly cook with meat mix.
  2. Dependent on amount of juices, thicken with cornstarch and let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add chestnuts and let them simmer for a few minutes. If you add chestnuts too early, they break up, so you get the flavor but not the mouth experience of whole chestnuts. Remove stalks of rosemary, leaving just the needles.  For flavor without visible rosemary, put rosemary stalks in small coffee filter or cheesecloth tied shut. You can also add some parsley stalks to increase flavor if you add rosemary this way. 

Garnish with orange segments and sprinkle with fresh parsley.

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Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Cobbler

November 4, 2019

From Chef Oonagh Williams of Gluten-Free Cooking with Oonagh

A tasty fall dessert, perfect for Thanksgiving!

Ingredients:

Pumpkin base:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 x 15 ounce can pumpkin 
  • 1 c (8 fl oz, 240 ml) evaporated milk 
  • ½ cup (120 ml) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 c (60ml) packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) pumpkin pie spice or more to your taste
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Snickerdoodle Topping:

  • ¼ c (2oz, 56g) butter, softened
  • ⅓ c (2+1/2 oz)  sugar
  • 2 teaspoon gluten-free baking powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • ½ c (2+1/2 oz, 70g) King Arthur all-purpose gluten-free flour. 
  • 1/8 tsp xanthan gum

To roll snickerdoodles:

  • ¼ c (60 ml), granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) ground cinnamon
  • Whipped cream (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat an 8×8” pan (2-quart baking dish) with gluten-free cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a 4 cup bowl, combine eggs, pumpkin, evaporated milk, the 1/2 cup granulated sugar, the brown sugar, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. Whisk until thoroughly combined. Pour into prepared baking dish.
  3. Combine the 1/4 cup granulated sugar and the cinnamon. Shape chilled Snickerdoodle Topping into 16 balls. I used a one tablespoon scoop and can make just 16 balls. Roll balls in the cinnamon-sugar. Press balls to slightly flatten to 1+ 3/4-inch-diameter rounds. Place in 4 x 4 rows over pumpkin filling.
  4. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until filling is set, edges begin to pull away from dish, snickerdoodles will have spread across custard, and a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool 15 minutes on a wire rack. Serve warm and, if desired, with whipped cream.

Snickerdoodle Topping:

  1. In a medium bowl beat all topping ingredients together for 2-3 minutes until soft and fluffy.  This is a very soft mix, not stiff cookie dough. Cover and chill dough 1 hour or until easier to handle, then scoop immediately into cinnamon sugar, roll into a ball in sugar, slightly flatten, and gently place on custard.  They might look as if they are sinking a little into custard. Snickerdoodle topping bakes up like soft, fluffy cake, snickerdoodles cooked on their own on cookie sheet, are thin and crispy.
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APPLE AND CRAISIN BREAD PUDDING

From Chef Oonagh Williams of Gluten-Free Cooking with Oonagh

A warm, fall-themed dessert to keep you feeling cozy as the nights start to turn cold!

Ingredients:

  • 2 gluten-free plain bagels cut into small cubes.  Don’t use soft white bread, it cooks up too mushy.  I’ve made this with Udi’s and Canyon Bakehouse plain bagels. 
  • 3 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into small pieces, like shredded cheese. Large chunks will make pudding fall apart when cooked.
  • ¾ c brown sugar
  •  ½ stick (2 oz, 60 ml)  butter
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie or apple pie spice or 1 tsp cinnamon plus ½ tsp powdered ginger plus ½ tsp ground nutmeg.
  • ½ c craisins
  • 2 tsp gluten-free vanilla essence
  • 2 tbsp rum – optional, but gives lovely flavor
  • 2 cups half and half or whole milk
  • 5 large eggs
  • brown sugar for top

Directions:

  1. Melt butter in a 6 cup saucepan, add apples, sugar and spices and cook over gentle heat until the apples are nicely soft without becoming apple sauce.  They don’t really cook much more in the bread pudding. I also mix this and cook in microwave in m/w safe bowl, add rest of ingredients and then refrigerate covered. 
  2. Add craisins, vanilla and rum to pan, stir in bread cubes.  Adding bread cubes should be sufficient to cool the mix to add eggs and milk.
  3. Beat eggs and milk together – I tend to use my immersion blender so I don’t have ‘threads’ of egg still showing. Gently mix into bread mix.  
  4. Pour into greased 8 x 8 brownie pan or equivalent sized pan and allow to soak for at least 30 minutes.  The large quantity of liquid should be absorbed leaving a small quantity of excess liquid around the edges.  Insufficient liquid will leave the bread hard and dry in places.
  5. Sprinkle the top with brown sugar for a crusty topping. Place on a baking sheet in case of spills as it is a very full baking dish.
  6. Bake in a preheated 350* oven for about 45 minutes. The bread pudding will have risen up, the top will be set, crusty and light brown and if you dig into the center it should be soft and moist but not wet with loose liquid. If you’re cooking it cold from the fridge, it will probably need 
  7. Remove from oven and cool for about 10 minutes before serving with caramel sauce. Reheats well.

Caramel sauce:

  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 4 tbsp butter 
  • 2 tbsp rum – optional
  1. Put sugar in an 8” skillet with water. Cook, covered, over low heat until sugar dissolves.  Covering pan while dissolving sugar stops formation of sugar crystals on side of pan.
  2. Remove lid, increase heat and cook until syrup turns a deep gold color, swirling pan will mix light and dark syrup.  You will notice burnt sugar smell and a smoke above pan if overcooked. Undercooked is tasteless. Be very careful as boiling sugar gives a nasty burn. Don’t stir mix as it will crystallize.
  3. Remove from heat, carefully add cream and butter, it will spit and bubble and harden. Return to low heat and stir until sauce is smooth again. Add rum if wanted.  Thickens slightly on cooling.

 

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Cauldron Cakes for Halloween

October 29, 2019

Cauldron Cakes for Halloween


A gluten-free Halloween treat from Diane Eblin of The W.H.O.L.E. Gang

Ingredients:

  • Your favorite gluten-free chocolate cupcake and icing recipe
  • Your favorite gluten-free chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Make gluten-free cupcakes.
  2. Melt your favorite gluten-free chocolate.
  3. Dip the cupcake bottoms into melted chocolate and place onto parchment paper to set. Place 4 chocolate chips on the sheet so when you set them down it will make it look like cauldron feet under the cupcakes.
  4. Core out the center of the cupcakes with a spoon or one of those cool corers.
  5. Fill the hole with icing and let it spill out the top.
  6. Make the handles by melting chocolate. Put it into a plastic baggie and snip the corner to make a piping bag. Draw the handles onto parchment paper and let them harden. Gently push the handles into the cupcake.



 

 

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Gluten-Free Christmas Dinner Menu

October 1, 2019

Appetizers

Bacon and Brie Holiday Melts

White Cheddar Stuffed Mushrooms

Sweet and Spicy Crab and Pepper Dip


Main Dishes

Boneless Stuffed Turkey Breast

Raspberry Wine Glazed Ham

Spinach Mushroom Lasagne


Sides

Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes

Green Bean Casserole

Whipped Gingerbread Spice Butternut Squash

Massaged Kale Salad with Pomegranate


Sauces

Wine and Mushroom Sauce

Hard Apple Cider Gravy (bottom of page)


Desserts

Pumpkin Pie

Honey Cinnamon Graham Crackers

Cannoli Dip

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Candy Corn Mini Muffins

September 30, 2019

Candy Corn Mini Muffins

Courtesy of Enjoy Life

An allergy-friendly, gluten-free Halloween treat!

Makes 30 mini muffins

Ingredients:
For the muffins:

  • 1 box (14.5oz/411g) Enjoy Life Foods Muffin Mix
  • 1 C. + 2 t. cold water
  • 1/4 C. olive oil or grapeseed oil
  • 2 t. vanilla extract
  • 3/4 t. ground cinnamon

For the frosting:

  • 1/2 C. dairy-free buttery spread
  • 2 C. confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 t. vanilla extract
  • 1 T. dairy-free milk, plus more as needed
  • 1/3 C. Enjoy Life Foods Mini Chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a mini muffin tin with liners or oil well.
  2. Put the Muffin Mix in a large bowl. Add the water, oil, vanilla extract, and cinnamon. Stir to combine.
  3. Divide the mixture into the prepared pan, filling each one about half full.
  4. Bake for 10 to 13 minutes, until golden brown on the edges and a toothpick inserted slightly off-center comes out clean.
  5. Let the muffins cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer each one to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
  6. To make the frosting, put the dairy-free buttery spread in the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl. Using the stand mixer or a hand mixer, beat on high speed for 1 minute, until the mixture begins to lighten.
  7. Add 1 1/2 cups of the confectioners’ sugar. Beat for 2 minutes until smooth, light, and fluffy. Add the remaining confectioners’ sugar, 1 tablespoon of the nondairy milk, and the vanilla extract. Beat for an additional minute until smooth and creamy, adding a teaspoon of dairy-free milk at a time if needed. Stir in the Mini Chips. Divide the mixture into three portions to create orange and yellow (the frosting itself will be the white layer).
  8. To make the orange frosting using food dye, mix 1 drop yellow food dye and 12 drops red food dye into one of the portions, adjusting by one drop, at a time until desired color is reached. To make orange frosting naturally, grind gogi berries into a fine powder and mix it into the frosting, adding as much as needed until desired color is reached.
  9. To make the yellow frosting using food dye, mix 20 drops yellow food dye into one of the portions, adjusting by one drop, at a time until desired color is reached. To make yellow frosting naturally, sprinkle turmeric into the frosting, adding as much as needed until desired color is reached.
  10. To frost the muffins, pipe the orange frosting each muffin, covering the top of the muffin completely. Top with a round of yellow frosting, then the white frosting.
  11. Serve, storing leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 days, moving any others to the freezer for up to 3 months.

 

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Sicilian Sausage Soup

May 22, 2019

A hearty and warming gluten-free soup, perfect for pre-trick or treating.

From Chef Oonagh Williams of Gluten-Free Cooking with Oonagh

I had this soup at a local restaurant, thought about making my own even better and checked on line what people thought Sicilian sausage soup should be. Most used pasta. And I felt rough the day after having this supposedly gluten free soup.

Feel free to play with the recipe. The more you add the thicker, less is thinner. Note that I ask for the vegetables to be finely chopped.  That’s because I like to have a selection of vegetables etc on my spoon. However, if you decide to chop your vegetables in the food processor, take care or your vegetables will be far too finely chopped. There is a difference in taste from different tomatoes, pasta sauces, Italian sausage, nothing bad, just different. I made this first time with quinoa as I’d run out of arborio rice.  Both go really soft when cooked in soup.  Cook arborio rice separately if you want rice to be firmer.

Remember that quinoa plus spinach or kale and veg etc are all high in fiber and can put your body into overdrive.  You have not been cross contaminated.  When you cook rice, quinoa or pasta in soup, you need more water as they all absorb water as they cook.  If you have leftover cooked rice etc to add at the end, then use 2 cups less stock. Remember that left in the fridge the rice etc will absorb more liquid and soup will be thicker.

Gluten-Free Sicilian Sausage Soup 

Ingredients: 

  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil
  • 1 lb (500g) bulk gluten-free Italian sausage, sweet, hot, with fennel or turkey. They all taste different. You can also buy raw sausages, slice open and peel like a banana
  • 1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 3-4 large carrots, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 ribs/stalk of celery, washed, quartered lengthwise and cut into small slices.
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely crushed
  • 1 red bell pepper, deseeded and cut into 1″ squares
  • 2 cups (16 fl oz, 480 ml) gluten-free marinara/pasta sauce. Both Paesana, Classico and Barilla sell 24 oz jars labeled gluten-free. I like Paesana low sodium Marinara as the salt doesn’t catch the back of my throat, but Classico or Barilla are much cheaper, or you can use homemade marinara. Some recipes use just canned tomatoes.
  • 1/2 c arborio rice, quinoa or small gluten-free pasta
  • 6 c (48 fl oz, 1440 ml), gluten-free chicken stock, or beef stock for deeper flavor
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) Italian herb seasoning, or fresh basil and parsley added at the end of cooking, or spoonful of basil or sundried tomato pesto stirred in at end
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) smoked paprika or Arizona dreaming spice (from Penzeys), they add just a bite of heat, increase if you like spicy or use hot Italian
  • Pepper to taste
  • 4 c (4 oz, 112g) fresh spinach, or same quantity by weight of chopped frozen spinach. I keep 1lb bag of loose, chopped frozen spinach in the freezer and can add it by the handful. Or kale or Swiss chard, your choice. This is a good time to use up the fresh spinach that’s not nice enough for salad.

Note: I don’t normally add extra salt as sausage, stock, marinara sauce already contain salt. But I am a low salt person. Feel free to add salt if you feel it’s necessary. 

 Directions:

 1.  Heat olive oil over gentle heat in large pan, add sausage crumbling it in your fingers, and frying until sausage starts browning.

2. Add onions, carrots, celery, garlic, bell pepper and cook for 3-5 minutes over medium heat until softening.

3. Add marinara sauce, stock, arborio rice (or substitute), freshly ground pepper. Bring to a boil, turn down to a simmer and cook covered for about 30 minutes until veg is soft, (5 minutes in my electric pressure cooker).

4. Add spinach and cook for a few minutes. Spinach wilts almost instantly.

5. I like to add fresh chopped basil and parsley, or some basil pesto or sun dried tomato pesto for boost of flavor.

5. Taste and adjust seasoning. If too thick for you, add more stock or milk.

6. Serve with a sprinkling of cheese on each bowl, crusty gluten-free bread, or gluten-free homemade croutons (see note below on croutons).

Note: I like to heat a skillet, add olive oil and small dices of whatever gluten-free bread/bagel/roll I have on hand, dust with garlic powder and fry until crispy. Fresh garlic in oil is great, but burns too easily if you pan fry. You can also oven roast croutons. My husband eats these croutons like candy.

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