Monday, April 25, 2011

Chinese Five Spice Jerky

     I really wanted Korean BBQ Spare ribs, but I didn't have any ribs on hand.  So instead, I took the sauce that I would have put on my ribs and marinated my thinly sliced meat overnight and made it into jerky.  Spicy and Sweet, Yum!


  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 cup GF soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 Tbsp ketchup
  • 2 tsp rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp Chinese Five spice
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • hot sauce (optional)
  • 1 pound of beef thinly sliced ( trimmed of fat)
  1. In a large bowl mix all the ingredients together except the meat.  
  2. Add the meat and let sit overnight to marinade.
  3. In your dehydrator place the meat flat and not overlapping.
  4. Dehydrate for 6 to 8 hours or more, depending upon how thinly you sliced your meat.  

Pear Pie Push-up Popsicles

     A good dessert to make together, after studying the topic of alliteration. Every child had to give me a sentence using alliteration to earn this treat.
     This dessert is light and creamy.  It reminds me of eating a pie on a stick.  It isn't overly sweet but still hits the spot.


  • 1 (29 oz) can of pears, drained
  • 1 (13.6 oz) can of cold Coconut Milk (not the light version)* 
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp Mace Powder
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend for approximately 15-30 seconds.  Make sure all the ingredients are well blended.
  2. Pour into push pop molds ( popsicle molds work great too!).
  3. Place in freezer until frozen.
Makes approximately 8 pops.

Cook's Notes:
Be sure to chill the coconut milk in the refrigerator ahead of time.  

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Flax Milk Review

  Here is the half gallon of flax milk, fresh from the Walmart.  I was excited to give it a try and immediately grabbed a glass and poured a tall one.  The verdict .....  it isn't fantastic, but it isn't bad either.  It has a slightly nutty taste---not my personal favorite.  It boasts that is a creamy beverage----well, it is definitely creamier than the thin rice milk that I drink.  While I would not make this my drink of choice to replace my milk, stick with your rice or almond milk.   In cereal, stick to your favorite milk.  To use this carton up I used it in my mashed potatoes.  I wouldn't buy it again.  

Homemade Corn Free Walnuts in Syrup - Like Smuckers make them!


  • 1/2 cup agave syrup
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp arrowroot
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  1. In a medium saucepan, add agave syrup, white sugar, brown sugar, and water.  
  2. Over medium high heat, stir sugars together.  When it begins to warm, add the arrowroot starch and stir until it dissolves and there are no lumps.  
  3. Stir occasionally until mixture boils.  Boil for 2 minutes without stirring.  
  4. Stir in walnuts and continue to boil for 1 minute.  
  5. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
  6. Store cooled mixture in a canning jar, and refrigerate overnight before using.
Cook's Notes:
  • You could use this immediately after it has cooled down, but the sauce will be very thin.  If you refrigerate overnight, the flavor blends beautifully, the taste is richer, and the syrup is thicker.  

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

New Dairy Free Milk - Flax Milk

 A new dairy free milk, Flax Milk is out on the market as of April 11, 2011.  It is being sold in Walmart's across the country.   It is priced around $3.00 per half gallon.  It is dairy free, gluten free, soy free, lactose free, and kosher.  The product is from Flax USA and is made in North Dakota.  You can read about it at and . 

GFCF Chicken Fried Steak

    I adapted this recipe from the  Pioneer Woman.   It was recommended by my mother and when I tried it using cubed Pork instead of beef, it was just as delicious.  I recommend checking out the link and looking at her photos as she prepares it.  They are beautiful!

  • 3 pounds of Cubed Steak ( I used cubed Pork instead of Beef.  I pounded it between two pieces of plastic wrap.  Don't over do it, or the meat will fall apart when you dredge it.)
  • 1-1/2 cups of rice milk (or other non dairy milk)
  • 3 Tbsp Ener G Foods - Egg Replacer  (the powder)
  • 1 cup Cybele Pascal's Gluten Free Flour Blend
  • 1 cup sweet rice flour
  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • 1 Tbsp seasoned salt
  • 2 Tbsp black pepper ( you can use a tablespoon more if you like it spicier)
  • Oil for frying ( I used Olive Oil)
  • Salt and Pepper for Meat
  1. In a large bowl combine Cybele's flour, sweet rice flour, brown rice flour, seasoned salt, and pepper.  
  2. In another shallow bowl, whisk together rice milk and Ener-G Egg replacer powder.  
  3. Have another large plate available to place the prepared breaded meat.
  4. Season your meat with a little salt and pepper.  
  5. One piece at a time, DIP meat into milk mixture, DREDGE meat in flour mixture, DIP into milk mixture, DREDGE in flour mixture, PLACE on plate.  *Make sure you coat each side thoroughly.  In essence you are going to be double coating the meat, so it is---wet-dry-wet-dry-plate it.
  6. Repeat step 5 with the remaining meat.
  7. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Make sure the oil is HOT before frying the meat. 
  8. Cook meat, a few pieces at a time, until it is golden brown.  Around 3-5 minutes per side (depending on the thickness of your meat).
  9. Place on a paper towel lined plate.  Keep warm until ready to serve.

   Cook's Notes:

  • Serve with your favorite gravy.  
  • Superb on a bagel with a scrambled egg.  Delicious!
  •  Chicken Fried Steak is usually served with a white or sawmill gravy.  I prepared a gravy by making a roux and adding milk, and seasoning with salt and pepper.  However,  I was not pleased with the taste of it.  I think a better base for the gravy would have been to use ground cashews, adding hemp or rice milk and seasonings.   
  • Adjust seasoned salt and pepper to your liking in the flour mixture.  The Pioneer Woman leaves it up to you.  The amounts shown above are what I used. 

No Corn Popcorn Balls

    That doesn't seem like a very good name does it.  My kids took one look at them and called them gum balls.  Also, not a very good name when there is no gum in them.  These sweet treats are really popped sorghum covered in a caramel syrup, then shaped into balls.


  • 8 cups Mini Pops sorghum
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp rice vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup extra light virgin olive oil
  1. Measure the sorghum into a large bowl and set aside.
  2. In a medium pot add sugar, brown sugar, honey, water, vinegar and salt.  
  3. Over medium high heat, stir constantly until the mixture boils.  
  4. Continue to stir constantly until mixture reaches 260 degrees Fahrenheit.  
  5. Turn heat to low, and stir in oil.  
  6. Optional step :  Add coloring to syrup if you like.  I used two capsules of beet powder.  The balls were a blushing pink color and very delicate looking.  I found the beet powder capsules at my vitamin shop.
  7. Pour syrup in thin streams over popped sorghum.
  8. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners.  With a large spoon or ice cream scoop, scoop mixture into muffin tins.  Round the tops with the spoon.  
  9. Let cool.  
  10. Enjoy!
Cook's note:  
    I have to confess that when I made these, I could not seem to reach temperature.   When I tested a drop of syrup into a glass of cold water, it would never form the ball it was suppose to.  After about ten minutes, I was done stirring!  It was a deep caramel color, so I went with it.   I poured the syrup onto the popped sorghum and placed in paper lined muffin tins.  After they cooled, they held together nicely.  

Saturday, April 9, 2011

What's in your Easter basket?

     Easter is round the corner and I had to think about what kind of candy was going to be in our kids basket.....This is what the bunny is bringing this year. ( He stopped by Natural Candy Store ):

  • Whizzers chocolate balls - dairy free and gluten free
  • Whizzers chocolate beans - dairy free and gluten free
  • Dark Chocolate Easter Bunny - dairy free and gluten free
  • Justin's Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups - dairy free and gluten free
  • Eli's Earth Bars  Peanut Butter Crunch and Caramel - dairy free and gluten free
  • Bunnies and Egg Natural Gummi Candy - gluten free and dairy free
  • St. Claire's Organics Watermelon Sweet Tart Candy - gluten free, dairy free, corn free, soy free, egg free. 
  • Surf Sweets Organic Jelly Beans - dairy free and gluten free

    Mom has lots of Justin's dark chocolate peanut butter cups in her basket.  Mom no longer dreams of Reese's Cups;  she gobble up Justin's now!   Yummy!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Baked Seasoned French Fries

 These scrumptious, addicting french fries are easy to make and less calories than its fried counterpart.  As you can see, someone's hand was in the fries before I could get a proper picture.  We can't make enough of these in our house!

  • 3-4 cups of potatoes cut into fries
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/8 - 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper*
  • 1/2 tsp salt*
  • 1/4 - 1/2 tsp chili powder*
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley
  • 2 tsp potato starch
  1. Place cut up potatoes in a large bowl, fill with water that covers the fries, and let rest for at least 1 hour.  This is to remove some of the starch from the potato.
  2. Meanwhile, mix all the dry ingredients together EXCEPT for the potato starch.
  3. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  4. Drain the water off the fries.  Dry off fries with paper towel.
  5. Place the french fries in a gallon ziploc baggie.
  6. Add potato starch and shake until the fries are well covered. 
  7. Add olive oil.  Shake well. 
  8. Add the spice mix and shake until all fries are well coated.
  9. On a foil lined baking pan that has been lightly coated with cooking spray, place a single layer of french fries.
  10. Bake for 15 minutes.  With a fork turn the fries over.  Bake an additional 15 minutes or until cooked through.  
     * For mild fries use:  1/4 tsp salt, 1/8 tsp cayenne, 1/4 tsp chili powder
     * For medium fries use:  1/2 tsp salt, 1/8 tsp cayenne, 1/2 tsp chili powder
     * For hot fries use:  1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp cayenne, 1/2 tsp chili powder (bonus - add 1/4 tsp black pepper)

Cook's Notes:
  • I cut my fries with the Progressive International Jumbo Potato Cutter that I ordered from Amazon.  I prefer the smaller cut of fries.  So, if you are hand cutting your fries you made need to add cooking time per side.  Wedges would take longer than thinner cuts.  

Gluten Free Dairy Free Carrot Cake Muffins

    Here is the promised muffin recipe from the last post.   I have searched high and low for a carrot cake recipe that reminded me of my Philadelphia Cream Cheese Carrot Cake Recipe.   I have tried many recipes, but everything fell short.  I decided that I just needed to take the original recipe and make it gluten free if I was going to have what I wanted.   I put the batter in muffin tins because it cooked better.  This muffin is tender and oohhh-so delicious!


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a bowl combine flour, xanthan gum, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Set aside.
  3. Cream shortening and sugar. 
  4.  Add pumpkin, sour cream and extract.  Blend well.
  5. Adding flour mixture a little at a time until all ingredients are just moistened.  Don't over beat.  
  6. Stir in carrots, nuts, and chocolate chips.  
  7. Batter will be thick.  Fill lined muffin tins full with batter.  
  8. Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  9. Cool completely to prevent crumbling.  Enjoy!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Rambling on ...a baking blitz! a sugar high!

Top: Do-Si-Dos Wanna-be, Carrot Cake Muffin
Bottom: Sour Cream Apple Nut Filled Muffins, Tagalong Wanna-be

     On April Fool's day, I was thinking of what I could post.   My kids would tell you mom doesn't fool around, nor does she have a sense of humor.  I mean what I say, and I like to get down to business.  I don't find most jokes funny, but I do have a funny bone that can be tickled if I am watching the right show.  So instead of posting a foolery recipe, instead I went on a baking blitz.  I made the above cookies and muffins and we all got a serious sugar buzz.  I really should have named my blog the Dessert Junkie.  
     I previously posted the sour cream apple nut filled muffins recipe, but the wanna-be cookie recipes are below.  As for the carrot cake muffins, I have to tell you, I think I have a moving black hole in my house.  It eats socks, shoes, beloved toys, occasionally important papers, and my latest recipe.  I have to try to remember how I made them and rewrite and retest the recipe.  I will post the carrot cake muffin recipe later this week.
     Hope you enjoy the wanna-be Girl Scout Cookies,  we devoured ours!  They were fantastic!

Gluten Free Tagalong Wanna-be

Cookie before topping

Ingredients for Cookie:

Chocolate Coating:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In medium bowl, mix flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and xanthan gum.  Set aside.
  3. Cream shortening and sugar until fluffy.
  4. Add egg replacer and vanilla extract.
  5. Add flour a little at a time to creamed mixture, until well blended.  
  6. Pinch off dough into 1 inch balls.  Flatten dough with the bottom of a lightly greased glass.  
  7. Bake for 8 minutes, until just beginning to brown.  Let cool completely.
  8. Make filling:  Cream peanut butter, sugar, and shortening until smooth.  Spread the filling like frosting on top of each cookie.  
  9. Make chocolate coating:  In a microwaveable bowl, heat chocolate chips and oil for 30 seconds.  Stir.  Continue heating at 30 second intervals and stirring until smooth.  
  10. Dip peanut butter frosted cookies in the chocolate coating with a fork.  Let excess chocolate drip off.  
  11. Place cookies on a plate and place in the refrigerator until chocolate coating is chilled.  

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Quick Granola Bites

Granola Base Ingredients:

Nut or Seeds (add in 1/4 cup of choice)
  • almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, hazelnuts, pistachios, coconut.
  • be sure to chop nuts before incorporating
Fruit (add in 1/4 cup of choice)
  • dried cherries, blueberries, cranberries, raisins, dates, figs, chocolate chips (I know it's not a fruit, but it is yummy!)
  1. In a medium bowl, add shortening, peanut butter, sugar, honey, and vanilla extract.  Beat until well blended.
  2. Stir in brown rice cereal, oatmeal, choice of nut and fruit.  
  3. Form mixture into 1 inch balls.