Today’s supermarkets have a wide variety of gluten free products. Here are a few suggestions: Muellers spaghetti or Sam Mills pasta, Kellogg’s rice krispies, Snyder’s pretzels, Pillsbury pizza dough and cookie dough, Glutino cookies, Van’s crackers, Betty Crocker cake, brownie and cookie mixes, Bob’s Red Mill muesli, rolled oats, and cornbread mix, James Foods pot pies, Full Circle waffle and pancake mix, King Arthur baking mix, Udi’s bread, Betty Crocker rice flour or Bisquick mix, Kady Shack puddings, and many more.
What does glute- free mean? Gluten is a gluey protein that’s present in most of our common dietary staples, such as bread, pastas, cereals, and desserts. It is an essential ingredient in most baked goods because it creates the fluffy quality in cakes and muffins and binds dough, giving them their moist texture. Gluten can also be found in processed cheeses, salad dressings, beer and soy sauce.
People become gluten sensitive where their food never becomes completely digested causing gastrointestinal issues such as abdominal pain, bloating, constipation, acid reflux, chronic diarrhea, IBS, and other conditions Doctors recommend cutting out all foods containing gluten from the diet for a month to see if you have this sensitivity, by adding gluten foods back slowly.
There’s a gluten-free expo in Raleigh on Aug. 9 with all sorts of vendors and educational programs. Check out delightglutenfree.com/gluten-free-events for other gluten free expos.
For those of you who are looking for some gluten-free recipes, here is a small selection of some tasty recipes.
Garden Salad with Avocado and Vinaigrette
2 Romaine hearts of lettuce, coarsely chopped
3 ripe red tomatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
½ red onion, thinly sliced
½ sweet onion or Vidalia, thinly sliced
1 cup pitted large black olives, cut in half
1 ripe avocado, skin and seed removed, cut into 1-inch chunks
1/3 cup garlic balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing or use Yogurt dressing (recipe below)
In a large bowl combine lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and black olives and toss together to mix well.
Drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette dressing and toss until evenly coasted. Refrigerate for 1 hour and serve. When ready to serve top with avocado chunks.
Yogurt and Herb Salad Dressing
1 ½ cups Greek yogurt
½ cup fresh parsley leaves
¼ cup fresh basil leaves
¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves
1 tablespoon white wine or champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Pinch of salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
In a blender combine all ingredients and blend until smooth. Taste the dressing and adjust as desired with more lemon juice and/or salt. Cover and refrigerate.
Greek-style Lentil Soup
¼ cup olive oil
2 bay leaves
2 large carrots, chopped
1 small sweet onion, finely chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh oregano or ½ teaspoon crushed dried oregano
½ teaspoon dried, crushed rosemary
2 garlic cloves, minced then smashed
2 cups prepared brown lentils according to package directions
Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
To a large skillet add olive oil and on medium heat cook the bay leaves for 3-5 minutes. Add the carrots, celery, and onion, sauté for 8 minutes, stirring frequently
In a bowl whisk together olive oil, vinegar, oregano, and rosemary. Set aside.
Pour vinegar mixture and carrot mixture over prepared lentils and toss to coat evenly. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove bay leaves before serving.
Shrimp Risotto with Spinach and Squash
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large sweet onion finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced then smashed
1 ½ cups Arborio rice
½ cup white wine
3 ½ cups chicken broth
1 small zucchini, cut into small pieces
1 small yellow summer squash, cut into small pieces
2 cups fresh spinach, chopped
1 pound small fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined
½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
Salt to taste
In a medium sized saucepan heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add in onion and sauté, stirring occasionally until tender about 6-7 minutes. Add garlic and cook for one minute.
Add in the rice and stir to coat rice with oil. Toast the rice for one minute until just fragrant. Add wine and stir to deglaze the pan. Simmer until wine is mostly absorbed about 3-4 minutes.
Add chicken broth by half cupful slowly, stirring slowly, and allow it to be absorbed into the rice. Continue until all of the broth is used and the rice is soft.
Fold in zucchini, squash, spinach, and shrimp. Cook, stirring occasionally for 4-5 minutes until the shrimp just turn pink.
Stir in gently Parmesan cheese and Old Bay Seasoning and let it cook for one minute before serving.
Chicken with Rice and Mushrooms
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 cup chopped sweet onions
1 pound white button mushrooms, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup basmati rice
2 cups chicken broth
4 cups cooked or rotisserie chicken
¼ cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
In a large saucepan heat 2- tablespoons olive oil over medium high heat, add onions and mushrooms and cook stirring occasionally until they are lightly browned, about 6 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook for one minute.
Add remaining 1-tablespoon olive oil and rice, stir until rice is fully coated with oil. Add the chicken broth, salt and pepper, to taste, stir and bring mixture to a boil. Lower heat to medium low, cover and let simmer for 20 to 25 minutes until broth is fully absorbed and the rice is soft.
Fluff rice mixture and gently fold in chicken, cook until heated through. Stir in fresh parsley. Serve immediately.
Blueberry-Peach Cobbler with Buttermilk Biscuits
4 fresh peaches or nectarines or 8 apricots, pits removed and thinly sliced
3 cups fresh blueberries
¾ cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 ¾ cups gluten free all purpose flour
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch of salt
1 stick or 8 tablespoons very cold butter, cut into small pieces
1 cup buttermilk, or 1-cup milk stirred with 1-tablespoon vinegar, divided
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 9-inch oven casserole baking dish with non-stick spray. Set aside.
In a bowl gently toss together peach slices and blueberries. In another bowl stir together sugar and cinnamon, add this to berry mixture and gently toss to coat evenly. Pour berry mixture into prepared casserole dish. Set aside.
To make biscuits: In a bowl whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add in butter and with 2 knives or a pastry cutter mix until coarse mixture forms.
Slowly add 2/3 cup buttermilk and mix until just combined. Form the batter into 8-equal sized biscuits and drop on top of berry filling. Press down slightly with the back of a spoon to flatten the biscuits.
With a pastry brush, brush remaining buttermilk on top of the biscuits then sprinkle sugar on top. Bake for 40-45 minutes until the berry filling is bubbling and the biscuits are golden. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
4 large egg whites, room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond extract
Pinch of salt
3 cups sweetened flaked coconut
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place oven rack in the middle of oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
In a bowl whisk together egg whites, sugar, vanilla, almond extract, and a pinch of salt, until well combined and frothy. Stir in coconut until mixed and evenly moistened.
With wet hands, to prevent sticking, shape coconut mixture into small balls about 1 ½ inches in diameter place onto baking sheet about 2-inches apart.
Bake until tops are pale golden in spots, about 15 – 20 minutes. Let macaroons cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes, then gently transfer macaroons and place on cooling rack until completely set, about 20 minutes. Macaroons can be kept in an airtight container for up to a week.
Hope Cusick has won awards at the North Carolina Strawberry Festival in 2012; The North Carolina Blueberry Festival, winning first place for her Blueberry Cheese Danish Pastry in 2012, and placing on her blueberry spinach salad and dressing; and has won various other contest awards for her blueberry cheesecake, breads, cookies, brownies and jams. She resides in Hampstead.
Cooking with Hope recipe collection
Want to keep Cooking with Hope at home?
We’re considering presenting the prize-winning cook’s recipes, featured each week in Topsail Advertiser, in a cookbook format. The cookbook would include recipes from the past six years of her popular column.
If you would potentially be interested in the cookbook, send your name, address and email to Topsail@JDNews.com.