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Sautéed Chicken Breasts With Herbs and Asiago Cheese and Italian Garden Sauté

July 21, 2014

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Summer time is when we our taste buds get spoiled by full flavored fruits and vegetables because you are picking them from your own garden buying them somewhere where they were picked from a farm that day. I can’t tell the difference with all vegetables but tomatoes and white corn taste amazing when they are really fresh.
 
This is a great do ahead dinner. I cut up the vegetables and put them in a covered bowl and bread the chicken and set it on a plate, covered. Then I take them out out of the refrigerator, start heating the pans and it’s a quick and easy dinner in 20 minutes.
 

Sautéed Breaded Chicken Breasts With Asiago Cheese and Herbs

Ingredients

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons rice or millet flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup grated asiago cheese
  • 1/2 cup regular or gluten free bread crumbs (they don’t need to be toasted)
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon oregano
  • a few sprigs of parsley (1 tablespoon chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2-3 tablespoons coconut or olive oil

Instructions

Cut chicken breasts diagonally through the middle to make four pieces. Place chicken in a plastic bag and pound to 1/2 inch thick, sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Process parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, garlic clove, oregano and parsley until they are even crumbs. Place flour on a plate, beaten egg on another plate, and cheese and breadcrumb mixture on a third plate. Dredge chicken in flour, then in egg and then lay on the crumbs, turn over and press. Lay chicken on paper towels on a plate and chill for 1 hour or more.

 
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Italian Garden Sauté

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1  zucchini, sliced in 1/8” slices
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 3 ears of corn, kernels removed
  • 1/2 teaspoon basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 large heirloom or beefsteak tomato, cut in small pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

Instructions

Melt butter in a large skillet and add the onion, garlic, zucchini, green pepper, corn, basil and oregano and sauté until liquid has evaporated and vegetables are soft. Add the tomato and salt and pepper and sauté 3-5 more minutes.
 
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Tomato, Fresh Mozzarella and Basil Tramezzino With Herbed Oil

July 15, 2014

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Italians have two names for a sandwich (it’s a little complicated). A ‘panino’ is a a small bread roll and a panini is a sandwich made from one of these rolls like a ciabatta, rosetta or baguette. The word for a sandwich made with sliced bread is a tramezzino. This recipe is for a finger licking, Italian dip tramezzino. It’s a bit messy so you really are licking your fingers but you won’t have a problem with that because you won’t want to miss out on any of the yummy flavor.
 
From Italy we have tomato, basil and mozzarella salads with olive oil but this classic combination has reached new heights when you add herbs to the oil. You can also try a yellow heirloom tomato. They have a sweet mild taste that has the tomato taking more of a backseat allowing the perfect balance of flavors for this sandwich. They are also a meatier tomato like a beefsteak so they slice well and aren’t full of juice.
 
For simplicity, you can use just plain olive oil that’s used for the classic recipe but it’s the garlic herb oil that puts the sandwich over the top. And since dipping the sandwich can be difficult with gluten free bread, you can just remove the top piece of bread, spoon the oil over the sandwich filling and put it back on. Like I said, a bit messy, but worth every bit of the extra fuss.

 

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Tomato, Fresh Mozzarella and Basil Tramezzino With Herbed Oil

Ingredients

Instructions

Assemble the sandwich and cut in quarters, halves or leave whole, whichever you prefer. *Stack basil leaves and roll up and slice diagonally with a sharp, straight knife (not serrated). You will need to use but basil immediately because the cut ends oxidize and brown quickly.

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Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

July 11, 2014

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Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal front page of the Marketplace section features quinoa in an article “In Quinoa, ‘Super Food’ meets ‘Gluten Free’. It read, “Quinoa is a titan of the so-called super foods, a loosely defined collection of produce that advocates claim have extraordinary nutritional benefits, whether it be high levels of antioxidants or omega-3s. Quinoa is lauded for its protein, fiber, iron and other minerals.” Sales for quinoa products have been growing for the past five years because of the new trend. “Quinoa also has gotten a boost from the gluten-free boom that took hold late last decade. Though technically not a grain, its seeds can be served like rice or made into flour for pasta. But it doesn’t contain the gluten proteins that many consumers are now trying to avoid.” This makes quinoa “a perfect collision of trends.”

The article also mentions the two groups of super foods, those that are normal that we’ve already been eating like blueberries and those that are exotic like acai berries. Quinoa is in the exotic group. It’s very different. It’s much lighter than rice or the other grains it’s being substituted for in recipes. And it had a very distinct taste that you have to get used to. I think quinoa begins as something you eat because it’s healthy but then it can grow on you and you might like it. At least you’ll have an appreciation for it because it’s such a superior food.

Because quinoa is part of the leafy green family like spinach and Swiss chard, its glycemic index is 53 but its glycemic load is only 19 so if you are watching your weight or your blood sugar, this is a very good food for you.

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

Salad

Ingredients
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup baby tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 zucchini, cut in pieces
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese cut in small cubes or burrata mozzarella balls filled with cream
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • greens

 

Dressing

Ingredients
  • 1 part pesto (recipe below)
  • 3 parts olive oil
  • white wine or balsamic vinegar or lemon juice to taste

NOTE:  To make it simple, you can just drizzle the salad with olive oil and lemon juice, and sprinkle with salt and pepper and a chiffonade of basil leaves (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJEQFgfv7iw).

Instructions

Place quinoa in a sieve and rinse with cold water. Bring water, rinsed quinoa and salt to a boil, turn heat down and simmer 15 minutes. Chill. Assemble salad ingredients on a bed of greens. Place dressing ingredients in a jar and shade. Drizzle over salad.

 

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Homemade Pesto

Ingredients
  • 2/3 cup raw pine nuts
  • 1 cup light olive oil (Bertolli Extra Light Tasting Olive Oil)
  • 1  4 ounce box of basil (3 cups basil leaves)
  • 1/4 cup grated parmigiano reggiano cheese
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon salt
Instructions

Put pesto ingredients in food processor and process/pulse just enough so you can still see the pieces of basil and finely chopped nuts.

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Kale and Cabbage Salad With Light and Creamy Poppyseed Dressing

July 5, 2014

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If you haven’t heard of superfoods, they are the highly nutritious foods, those with an unusually high amounts of antioxidants, vitamins or other nutrients that have been proven to reduce the risk of developing certain diseases. It can be helpful to know what foods are good for what, but you don’t need specific foods for a specific ailment. Eating healthy is a preventive approach to overall health. A diet made of a variety of superfoods will help you maintain your weight, blood sugar levels, cholesterol levels to ward off heart decease, diabetes and cancer.
 
This is a superfood salad. Both kale and cabbage are cruciferous vegetables which have antioxidant nutrients, anti-inflammatory nutrients and anti-cancer nutrients. Without a sufficient intake of antioxidants, our oxygen metabolism can become compromised, and we experience a condition called “oxidative stress” which leads to free radical damage and inflammation. This stress, damage and inflammation can lead to cancer. And if the walls of arteries are inflamed, the body patches the walls with cholesterol to protect them which can build up and put stress on your heart.
 
Kale is one of the worlds healthiest foods. It’s cancer preventive benefits are linked to two types of antioxidants, carotenoids and flavonoids. Kale raises the blood levels of these two carotenoid nutrients protecting the body from oxidative stress.  Kale also provides the body with Omega-3, vitamin K. Its fiber acts to draw cholesterol out of the body and it contains nutrients that support some of the body’s detoxing processes.
 
Pumpkin seeds are rich in vitamin E and zinc. Poppy seeds are rich in oleic and linoleic acids which lower the bad LDL cholesterol and increase the good HDL cholesterol. They are an excellent source of vitamin B and contain good levels of some minerals. Poppy seeds outer coat is a good source of fiber.
 
Cherries are a good source of copper and vitamin C which the body relies on to aid collagen production to keep tissues strong and also helps fight the free radical damage of oxidative stress. If you don’t drink wine and are missing out on the resveratrol, it’s also in cherry juice.

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Kale and Cabbage Salad With Light and Creamy Poppyseed Dressing

Salad

Ingredients
    • 2 large curly kale leaves, center rib removed, sliced thin
    • 1 quarter green cabbage, sliced thin
    • 1 quarter red cabbage, sliced thin
    • fresh or dried cherries (or dried cranberries)
    • pumpkin seeds

(grated brussel sprouts work well in this salad too)

Light and Creamy Poppy Seed Dressing

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup canned coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons Coconut Secret Raw Coconut Vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons poppy seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
Instructions

Measure all dressing ingredients into a jar and shake until well blended. Drizzle over the salad.

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Fresh Berry Tea Cakes With Almond

June 30, 2014

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Need something red, white and blue for a fourth of July picnic? These yummy cakes are made with coconut flour and flavored with almond, coconut and fresh blueberry and raspberries.
 
Coconut flour is very different to bake with because it is very absorbent. What you will notice when you run across a recipe made with coconut flour is there are a lot of eggs and the ratio of liquid to dry ingredients is much higher. For every one cup of coconut flour you use, you can expect to see 5 -6 eggs and 1 cup of liquid such as almond or coconut milk. Since you cannot substitute coconut flour for a grain based flour at anywhere near a 1:1 ratio, it’s best to use recipes that have already been worked out to avoid a lot of expense and time trying to convert a recipe or develop a recipe on your own.
 
Coconut flour is gluten free and high in fiber and protein and low in carbs. It’s good for digestion. The high amount of coconut oil in it makes it good for heart health. Being low in carbs it helps to balance blood sugar levels and is good for weight management. The high fiber and fat make it a very filling which is also good for weight management. So when you need a treat on a diet, these little cakes are great.

Red Hill’s Organic Coconut flour acts a little different and has a very strong taste. I recommend Coconut Secret’s Raw Coconut Flour, Trader Joe’s Organic Coconut Flour or some other light colored coconut flour.

Fresh Berry Tea Cakes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup melted honey*
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil*
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 cup canned coconut milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond flavoring
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup raspberries, cut in pieces
  • 1/2 cup blueberries (cut if half if they are large)

Instructions

Butter a muffin tin and set aside. Mix flour, baking soda and salt and set aside. Whisk the syrup, oil, eggs, milk and flavorings together. Whisk the dry and wet ingredients together and fold in the chia seeds and fruit. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 25 minutes or until tops springs back when you touch them with your finger.
 
*Heating the honey and oil allows you to blend the ingredients easier and the dough is less stiff so the tops of the cakes look nicer. Don’t let them get hot, just warmed.
 
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Nutritious Gluten-Free Sandwich Bread

June 17, 2014

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This recipe is a nutritious adaptation of America’s Kitchen’s gluten free bread. Thanks to their hard work, we no longer have to deal with gluten-free bread that crumbles apart when you try to spread peanut butter on it, or that is so gummy that you have to toast it to eat it. This recipe is great tasting, light and moist.

What makes this recipe healthier is not only the removal of xanthan gum, which America’s Test Kitchen replaced with psyllium husks, but also the replacement of the tapioca and potato flours or starches that you find in most store bought gluten free breads. These ingredients can cause health issues. Xanthan gum is a very popular food additive and is found in most of the gluten free baked goods and many other products such as fat free salad dressings or pastry fillings. It is an industrial processed product, usually made by the fermenting of corn sugar with a bacteria xanthomonos campestris, but may be derived from wheat or soy as well as corn.  Tapioca and potato starches and flours have little to no nutrition and are constipating. So if you still want to enjoy baked goods, and want to eat gluten free, you may need to make it yourself.

If you haven’t worked with gluten free flours, it’s very different from wheat flour and less forgiving, even more so when you are working without xanthan gum and using only healthy flours. There’s a perfect balance that you have to find.

A loaf of bread not coming out right is discouraging. Consistently hitting that perfect place between a gluten free bread that is gummy and one that crumbles apart can be controlled better if you weigh the flours on a scale like the professional bakers, rather than relying on measuring cups. If all the amounts are exact, and you have the oven ready and get the bread in the oven at the correct point in the rising, you will have a good loaf of bread every time.

Flours have a different weight so they are not interchangeable.  From what little testing I’ve done using the healthier flours, I can say that America’s Test Kitchen engineered a great full proof recipe. So far, no matter what combination of flours I tried, so long as I weighed them, the bread was light and not dry and the only problem was too much rising resulting in some larger holes and large gaps near the top of the bread. Every loaf was usable even if it wasn’t perfect so I would say don’t be afraid to make whatever changes you may need to for allergy reasons.

Brown rice flour and sorghum flours are both sweet flours giving  the bread a very pleasant taste. Other common nutritious gluten free flours include millet, oat, amaranth, teff,  hemp, quinoa, fava bean and garbonzo bean flour. Some of them produce a darker loaf and some have a distinct flavor.  The darker and flavored flours work great for quick breads, like banana bread or apple muffins, but are not the ones to use when you want to make a light colored, plain sandwich bread. Brown rice, gluten free oat, sorghum and millet are best for plain sandwich bread. Buckwheat is unique. It makes a darker loaf and has a distinct taste but, like rye bread, it’s distinct taste has been very popular for a long time. Coconut flour is healthy and has a wonderful taste but it is a very thirsty flour requiring an unusual dry to liquid mixture ratio. Making the necessary adjustments to this recipe in order to use this flour could be like starting the recipe from scratch unless you have worked with coconut flour a lot and would know what to do.

The following link is to the original recipe from America’s Test Kitchen. They used a metal bread pan with a foil collar, like you do for soufflés, to keep the bread rising up and not over the rim. This recipe done in a glass bread pan does not have this problem. But their recipe gave me the idea for a foil box is to create a warm environment and in place of the need for a damp cloth that is normally used in rising bread which will weigh the delicate dough down and can stick to the dough.

http://tasty-yummies.com/2014/02/17/gluten-free-classic-sandwich-bread/

Notes:

You may want to use an oven thermometer to make sure your oven is calibrated accurately.

Notes: The texture of this bread will change after a few days like other gluten free breads and because there aren’t any preservatives, it will begin to spoil. By the second day you will want to keep it in the refrigerator or freezer and toast it.

You can also turn this bread into delicious crumbs that you can keep in there freezer for stuffings, making meatloaf and meatballs, fish cakes and burgers, bread crusted and bread coated chicken and fish, and crumb toppings for casseroles.

Nutritious Gluten-Free Sandwich Bread

Have all ingredients at room temperature.

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces (approximately 1 1/3 cup) sorghum flour
  • 6 1/4 ounces (approximately 1 1/3 cup) brown rice flour
  • 4 ounces (approximately 1 1/8 cup) gluten free oat flour
  •  1 3/4 ounces (approximately 1/2 cup) almond flour
  •  1 1/2 ounces (This can be from 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup depending on the brand) dry milk powder*

(This should weigh 19.5 ounces total.)

  • 3 tablespoons powdered psyllium husks (grind whole psyllium husks in a coffee grinder)
  • 1 package regular or rapid rising yeast
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 cups warm water (110 degrees)
  • 2 large (1/2 cup) eggs
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons butter*

*For a no milk products recipe, leave the milk powder out and use 1 1/2 ounces more sorghum flour, and use coconut oil instead of butter.

Instructions

Preparing the Pan

Prepare a 1 1/2 quart  (1.4 L) pyrex glass bread pan by greasing it with butter or oil and line the short sides of the ban and the bottom with a 3-4 inch strip of parchment paper lengthwise that extends above the rim of the short sides of the pan for easy lift out when removing the baked bread from the pan. To make the foil box, tear off a piece of foil 3 inches longer than the measurement of the outside of the pan. Fold the foil in half lengthwise.

Once you have the dough ready in the pan, you’re going to wrap the foil around the pan folding the two seams together. Then mold the foil to the outside of the pan to make it snug and keep it in place. The foil walls of the box will extend about 3 inches above the rim of the pan. The last step in creating the box will be to place a piece of sedan wrap loosely over the top.

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Making the Dough

Melt the butter and honey together in a small pan. Set aside to cool. Place the 19.5 ounces of dry ingredients, the psyllium husks, salt and yeast in the bowl of a Kitchen Aid mixer (or other comparable standing mixture) with a paddle (not the whip). Blend the dry ingredients together for 1 minute on a low speed. Whisk the warm water, eggs, and cooled butter and honey in a 4 cup measuring cup or something that will pour without spilling. As the mixer is running, pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Turn the mixer up to a medium speed and beat for 5 minutes. The dough will be the consistency of a heavy cookie dough. Transfer the dough to the prepared pan. Use a knife to make the top even and then use wet fingers to make it smooth. Set up the walls to the box and lay the plastic wrap loosely over it and let the dough rise at room temperature until the highest part is 1/2″ above the rim of the pan, about a 40-50% rise (not double in bulk). This may only take 25 minutes depending on the temperature of the room. Have the oven rack in the middle and the oven preheated to 325 degrees. When the dough is ready, remove the plastic wrap and the foil box, give the top a spray of water and set the pan on the middle rack. Let the bread bake for 55 minutes giving the bread a turn half way through for even baking and browning. Remove the bread from the pan using the parchment paper to lift it out. If it doesn’t easily lift out, carefully run a thin knife or spatula around the edges to loosen them. Transfer the bread to a cookie rack and slip the paper out. Cool completely (at least 2 hours) before slicing.

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Nutritious Gluten-Free Buckwheat Bread

Buckwheat is not wheat and not a grain. It is a broadleaf plant and flour is made from its leaves and flowers. It’s unique medicinal properties are impressive. Buckwheat is used to improve blood flow by strengthening veins and small blood vessels and preventing hardening of the arteries. Rice, wheat and corn are high on the glycemic scale provoking quick spikes in blood sugar levels, a proven promoter of inflammation. Ranking low on the glycemic index, buckwheat may help manage diabetes and inflammation as it helps the body deal with blood sugar. Buckwheat is the best source of high-quality, easily digestible proteins and is an excellent meat substitute when eaten the same day as beans and cereal grains boosting their protein value at the same time. The specific characteristics of buckwheat proteins and the relative proportions of its amino acids make buckwheat may make it the unsurpassed cholesterol-lowering food. It’s being studied for possible use in foods to reduce body fat and cholesterol gallstones. It’s high in rutin which helps with high blood pressure.  It’s good for digestion as it cleans and strengthens the intestines and improves appetite.

Losing Weight and Managing Blood Sugar and Your Energy Level

This may seem like a strange place to talk about this subject but it’s here because this is a bread recipe and bread, even nutritious bread, is something most people should eat in moderation or they may gain weight or throw off their blood sugar balance. There isn’t any one diet that is right for everyone but finding the right balance of the proteins, fats, grains and sugar (carbohydrates) you consume is right for most people. It’s not difficult to understand what this balance is for your body once you start thinking about it and paying attention to how you feel. When you set out to lose weight, you are asking your body to go into its fat storage and use that fat as energy for that day. So each day you want to set out to have your body run its everyday tasks using the fat you eat that day (from fat and carbs that are turning into fat) and the stored fat.

There are two things that have caused there to be too much stored fat and that will keep you from achieving your goal. One is if you are eating the wrong amounts of grains and sugar. Grains and sugars are converted by the body into fat and excessive carbohydrates will be added to the stored fat. The second thing is too many calories. Only eating nutritious food doesn’t make it okay to eat as much healthy grains, organic fruit, nutritional sugars – such as honey, maple syrup, agave syrup and coconut sugar – as you would like to eat. You have to have carbohydrates. Your brain can’t think without sugar. So if you go on a low carb diet and are not getting enough carbs, you will suffer the same cravings and tired symptoms as you did when you were eating too many carbs and you will give up on the new diet. It’s a balance you are trying to find for your body.

Just as the average American has been eating the wrong kinds of oils, eating three times the amount of omega-6 oils causing the omega-3 and 6 ratio to be out of balance, they are eating the wrong kinds of carbohydrates. We have gone down the wrong road in terms of taking care of our bodies in this country. Metabolic Syndrome is the name for a group of risk factors that indicate how a body’s metabolism is functioning showing that it’s probably headed towards coronary heart disease, diabetes and other health issues. The list of factors include a wide waistline (obesity), high blood pressure, as well as high serum triglyceride levels and low HDL (the good one) cholesterol levels. Some studies have shown the prevalence of this condition in the US to be 34% of the adult population, and studies are also showing that this condition is directly related to what a person is eating on a regular basis. The main culprit has been too many junk food carbohydrates made with white flour and sugar. But we can’t eliminate carbohydrates from our diets. Carbohydrates provide fiber and essential nutrients that our bodies need. Our diets need to include the right amount of the right kinds of carbohydrates – nutrient dense carbohydrates with fiber that will involve a slower metabolical processing of glucose resulting in a more stabilized blood sugar level – from fruits and vegetables and the proper amount of healthy grains. GI or the glycemic index of these foods show how the sugar in these foods will effect the body’s blood sugar level, causing the dangerous glucose spikes or metabolizing more slowly and maintaining an even blood sugar level.

Food combining also plays an important role in how the body metabolizes glucose. Fats and fiber eaten with carbohydrates will slow down the process, keeping the bold sugar level even. Chocolate has fat and will slow the absorption of sugar into the blood stream.  Eat nuts with your fruit. Put coconut oil, walnuts and rice bran in your banana muffins.

Sugars causing spikes have been going straight to your fat cells. Insulin spikes turn off your body’s fat burning mechanisms and make you hungry again several hours late. As you make the new adjustment to your diet, eating the right carbohydrates the right way, something happens. Your body will flip a switch from the auto-pilot, starvation (store fat) mode it’s been in, to an auto-pilot burn fat mode. This message to the body is handled by a hormone called glucagon, which gets suppressed when too much insulin is being released to deal with carbohydrates that are causing spikes. When the message is received for your body  to switches from storage to burning fat you will also notice that exercise which previously may not have been doing much will actually start working to burn up fat.

This is a great article for understanding balancing blood sugar levels. http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/replacing-refined-sugars-with-natural-sugars-one-step-at-a-time/

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Buckwheat Bread

Have all ingredients at room temperature.

Ingredients

  • 6 1/4 ounces (approximately 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons) buckwheat flour
  • 4 ounces (approximately 3/4 cup) brown rice flour
  • 2 ounces (approximately 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons) millet flour
  • 4 ounces (approximately 1 1/8 cups) gluten free oat flour
  • 1 3/4 ounces (1/2 cup) almond flour
  • 1 1/2 ounces (This can be from 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup depending on the brand) dry milk powder

(This should weigh 19.5 ounces total.)

  • 3 tablespoons powdered psyllium husks (grind whole psyllium husks in a coffee grinder)
  • 1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) regular or rapid rising yeast
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 cups warm water (110 degrees)
  • 2 large (1/2 cup) eggs
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Instructions

Preparing the Pan

Prepare a 1 1/2 quart  (1.4 L) pyrex glass bread pan by greasing it with butter or oil and line the short sides of the ban and the bottom with a 3-4 inch strip of parchment paper lengthwise that extends above the rim of the short sides of the pan for easy lift out when removing the baked bread from the pan. To make the foil box, tear off a piece of foil 3 inches longer than the measurement of the outside of the pan. Fold the foil in half lengthwise.

Once you have the dough ready in the pan, you’re going to wrap the foil around the pan folding the two seams together. Then mold the foil to the outside of the pan to make it snug and keep it in place. The foil walls of the box will extend about 3 inches above the rim of the pan. The last step in creating the box will be to place a piece of sedan wrap loosely over the top.

Making the Dough

Melt the butter and honey together in a small pan. Set aside to cool. Place the 19.5 ounces of dry ingredients, the psyllium husks, salt and yeast in the bowl of a Kitchen Aid mixer (or other comparable standing mixture) with a paddle (not the whip). Blend the dry ingredients together for 1 minute on a low speed. Whisk the warm water, eggs, and cooled butter and honey in a 4 cup measuring cup or something that will pour without spilling. As the mixer is running, pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Turn the mixer up to a medium speed and beat for 5 minutes. The dough will be the consistency of heavy cookie dough.

Transfer the dough to the prepared pan. Use a knife to make the top even and then use wet fingers to make it smooth. Set up the walls to the box and lay the plastic wrap loosely over it and let the dough rise at room temperature until the highest part is 1/2″ above the rim of the pan, about a 40-50% rise (not double in bulk). This may only take 25 minutes depending on the temperature of the room.

Have the oven rack in the middle and the oven preheated to 325 degrees. When the dough is ready, remove the plastic wrap and the foil box, give the top a spray of water and set the pan on the middle rack. Let the bread bake for 55 minutes giving the bread a turn half way through for even baking and browning.

Remove the bread from the pan using the parchment paper to lift it out. If it doesn’t easily lift out, carefully run a thin knife or spatula around the edges to loosen them. Transfer the bread to a cookie rack and slip the paper out. Cool completely (at least 2 hours) before slicing.

Recommended Flours

Arrowhead Mills Organic Buckwheat FlourIMG_8598

Buckwheat does not have the out of balance insulin-raising, fat-storing effects found in other flours because it is not wheat and not a grain. It is a broadleaf plant and flour is made from its leaves and flowers. It’s unique medicinal properties are impressive. Buckwheat is used to improve blood flow by strengthening veins and small blood vessels and preventing hardening of the arteries. Rice, wheat and corn are high on the glycemic scale provoking quick spikes in blood sugar levels, a proven promoter of inflammation. Ranking low on the glycemic index, buckwheat may help manage diabetes and inflammation as it helps the body deal with blood sugar. Buckwheat is the best source of high-quality, easily digestible proteins and is an excellent meat substitute when eaten the same day as beans and cereal grains boosting their protein value at the same time. The specific characteristics of buckwheat proteins and the relative proportions of its amino acids make buckwheat may make it the unsurpassed cholesterol-lowering food. It’s being studied for possible use in foods to reduce body fat and cholesterol gallstones. It’s high in rutin which helps with high blood pressure.  It’s good for digestion as it cleans and strengthens the intestines and improves appetite.

Bob’s Red Mill Almond Meal4999C164_AlmondMeal_s_450

Bob’s Red Mill Almond Meal is ground from whole, blanched sweet almonds. Almonds are notoriously healthy nuts providing a good amount of manganese and vitamin E , as well as a healthy serving of monounsaturated fats in each 1/4 cup serving. Not only do almonds have a healthy boost of protein, they are also very low in carbohydrates and naturally gluten free.

Eating whole almonds is terrific, but did you know that adding almond meal to your baking and cooking can bring the health benefits of almonds to your diet, as well as cutting back on carbohydrate consumption? Replacing 25% of the flour in your baking with almond meal will add wonderful texture and flavor while reducing the total carbohydrates. This makes it perfect for those following a low carbohydrate or paleo diet.

Almond meal is produced in our gluten free facility, making it an ideal addition to a gluten free diet. In addition to low carbohydrate baking, almond meal is wonderful for use in French macaroons and financiers, pie crusts, cakes, cookies, pancakes and quick breads. Almond meal can be used in savory applications, as well. Use almond meal in place of bread crumbs in meatballs, or as a coating for chicken and fish. Find recipes for using almond meal under the recipe tab below. Almond meal is best kept refrigerated or frozen.

Bob’s Red Hill Organic Whole Grain Brown Rice Flour6072C244_OG_BrownRiceFlour_s_450

An absolute staple in gluten free baking, brown rice flour is incredibly versatile. Our Brown Rice Flour is 100% stone ground at

Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods on a very fine setting to prevent the flour from tasting gritty-a common complaint about many brown rice flours.

Brown rice flour is a nutritious alternative to wheat flour and is naturally gluten-free. It is high in protein, iron, fiber and vitamin B. Brown rice flour is rich in manganese, which helps in the proper development of bones and cartilage. It also helps in better absorption of calcium. One serving of brown rice flour supplies more than 20 percent of the recommended amount of magnesium, phosphorus and copper, as well as 11 percent of potassium and more than 100 percent of manganese. In addition, brown rice flour supplies 20 percent of the recommended amount of iron for men and 9 percent for women.

Brown rice flour contains healthy bran and will add a darker color to your baked goods. It also imparts a richer, nuttier flavor than wheat flour. You can thicken sauces with it and use it for coating fish and other proteins, as well as produce breads, cakes and noodles. Browse our extensive collection of recipes using brown rice flour for everything from brownies to blini.

Bob’s Red Hill ‘Sweet’ White Sorghum Flour2530C224_SorghumFlour_s_450

Sorghum originated in Africa thousands of years ago, and then spread through the Middle East and Asia via ancient trade routes, traveling to the Arabian Peninsula, India and China along the Silk Road. Today sorghum remains a staple food in India and Africa, and is growing in popularity in America. It’s the third most important cereal crop nationally and the fifth most important around the world. The whole grain kernel is ground into a flour that can be used for cooking and baking.

Sorghum flour is a powerhouse of nutrition and adds a superb flavor to gluten-free baking. It is high in protein, iron, and dietary

fiber, making sorghum flour welcome in pantries around the world. Sorghum flour is high in antioxidants, which support cardiac health. In addition, the starch and protein in sorghum take longer than other similar products to digest. This slow digestion is particularly helpful for those with diabetes.

Traditionally this flour has been used as a cereal food to create pancakes, porridges, beer and flatbreads throughout different cultures, such as jowar roti in India. In the United States it is becoming more common to use sorghum flour in baked goods. It can be added or substituted in any recipe that calls for flour such as cakes, cookies, breads and muffins. While some gluten free flours, such as rice flour, can add a gritty texture to cookies or bread, sorghum flour has a smoother texture that many people prefer. Due to its very mild taste, sorghum flour is a natural choice to incorporate into sweet breads, cookies, or the like. Add 15% to 20% sorghum flour to your flour mixes to make delicious breads, cakes, and cookies.

Bob’s Red Hill Gluten Free Oat Flour1984C22_s_hr

Our Gluten Free Oat Flour is milled from the purest gluten free oats grown by over 200 farmers on clean, dedicated oat-growing fields. This whole grain flour is excellent for adding to gluten free baked goods to impart a true oat flavor and wholesome nutrition. The flour is milled and packaged in our 100% gluten free facility and tested for gluten to ensure purity.

Whole grain oats make and incredibly nutritious flour. Not only are oats an excellent source of dietary fiber, they also reduce serum cholesterol levels in the body. Oats are higher in protein and healthy fats, and lower in carbohydrates than most other whole grains. They contain more soluble fiber than any other grain.

Bob’s Red Hill Whole Grain Millet Flour1296C23_s_hr

Which grain was first farmed nearly 10,000 years ago? Which grain was revered as one of five sacred crops in ancient China? Which grain is mentioned in the Old Testament, the writings of Herodotus, and the journals of Marco Polo? The answer is millet! Bob’s Red Mill Whole Grain Millet Flour is nutritious, gluten free and 100% freshly ground on century-old stone-buhr millstones. Millet Flour is wonderfully nutritious and a good source of protein, essential amino acids and dietary fiber. Millet is also an excellent source of manganese, phosphorus and magnesium. Unlike most other grains, this versatile, gluten free grain is alkaline, which makes it easy to digest and helps balance the body’s natural tendency towards acidity. Our Millet flour has a light, mild flavor, making it perfect for sweet or savory baking. It lends a delicate cake-like crumb to your baked goods. Replace up to 25% of the flour in your recipe with millet flour for added nutrition. In our opinion, millet flour is often overlooked in gluten free baking—it adds whole grain nutrition and has a mild flavor, not something you find often with gluten free flours.  

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Summer Succotash

June 14, 2014

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Succotash is a food dish consisting primarily of corn and lima beans, but I was glad to find out from Wikipedia that it can also be made with other shelled beans because I tried the lima beans and it was good, but I love edamame beans in this recipe. And lima beans are usually only found frozen and frozen vegetables, with the exception of peas, can get rubbery. Traditional succotash can also include bell peppers and tomatoes, so why not just throw in whatever you want and make it very healthy and a little less fattening without all the sweet carbs of a lot of corn!

In the Indian Narragansett language, the spelling was “sohquttahhash,” which I’m not sure we can pronounce. It meant “broken corn kernels” and was first prepared by native Americans in the eastern woodlands. Today it is a traditional dish of many Thanksgiving celebrations in New England. Because the ingredients were readily available and inexpensive, the dish was popular during the Great Depression.

Wikipedia also has this interesting trivia. “Sufferin’ succotash,” we all know well as a catch phrase of Warner Brother’s cartoon character Sylvester the cat and was also used by Daffy Duck, was a phrase used in the old days around impressionable people. The Depression-era exclamation of annoyance was a ‘minced oath’ which is a euphemistic expression formed by misspellings, mispronouncing, or replacing part of the taboo term to avoid being offensive, like the word ‘darn.’ The original phrase the was minced was “suffering savior.”

This is a beautiful and delicious side dish for roasted chicken or turkey.

Summer Succotash

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 cup diced red onion
  • 3/4 cup diced red, orange and yellow bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup green beans, cut in 1/4” pieces
  • 3/4 cup diced summer squash
  • 2 ears of corn, kernels removed
  • 3/4 cup edamame or lima beans
  • 1 ripe tomato, diced
  • 1 tablespoon butter (opt)
  • salt and pepper
  • chopped fresh parsley and basil

Note: Use more green beans and peppers and less corn and squash for low carb diets

Instructions

Sauté onion in olive oil until translucent and starting to brown. Add bell peppers, green beans, zucchini, corn and edamame. Cover and cook until tender, about 12-15 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and cook one minute. Stir in butter. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with parsley and basil.

 

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Chicken Parmigiana

May 29, 2014

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Traditionally chicken parmigiana is a baked dish. The meat is breaded and shallow or deep fried, then layered in a casserole with pasta sauce and cheese. To avoid having the crisp breading getting soggy, the recipe can be changed to doing the layering right on the plate as you serve it. You can mix some sauce with the pasta along with some parmesan cheese and put the chicken on top. Or put the chicken on the pasta and spoon the sauce on top.

Normally we are told that cooked vegetable have less nutrition than fresh but cooked tomatoes are better than raw. While their vitamin C content is reduced by a small percentage, tomatoes are a good source of lycopene and this phytochemical that makes them red has highly efficient antioxidant properties (more than vitamin E) and the anti cancer power  is boosted when tomatoes are cooked.

Chicken parmigiana is normally served with spaghetti pasta but you can use any shape pasta you like – linguini, rigatoni, fusilli, penne. Brown rice and millet quinoa pastas now come in many shapes. Buckwheat pastas have a distinct taste that is not good with tomato sauces. They are better for salads or warm herbed olive oil sauces.

Chicken Parmigiana

Ingredients

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons rice or millet flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan (or use part asiago cheese if you want a stronger cheese flavor)
  • 1/2 cup regular or gluten free bread crumbs
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon oregano
  • a few sprigs of parsley (1 tablespoon chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2-3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup grated mozzarella
  • 1 1/2 cups pasta sauce*
  • steamed cabbage or cooked pasta
  • grated parmesan cheese
  • fresh basil

Instructions

Cut chicken breasts diagonally through the middle to make four pieces. Place chicken in a plastic bag and pound to 1/2 inch thick, sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Process parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, garlic clove, oregano and parsley until they are even crumbs. Place flour on a plate, beaten egg on another plate, and cheese and breadcrumb mixture on a third plate. Dredge chicken in flour, then in egg and then lay on the crumbs, turn over and press. Lay chicken on paper towels on a plate and chill for 1 hour or more.

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat pasta sauce on medium low heat. Heat oil in a sauté pan over medium high heat. When oil is hot, place chicken pieces, two at a time in hot oil and cook 3-4 minutes on each side. Place in a casserole, sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and bake until cheese melts. Place chicken on cooked pasta or steamed cabbage. Spoon pasta sauce over the top and sprinkle with parmesan and decorate with fresh basil leaves.  If you like a lot of basil, chop it and sprinkle it all over the dish.

 

*I like to mix a jar of Mezzetta Tomato Basil (it has wine and is very authentic tasting) and a jar of Bertolli Tomato Basil (Bertolli is a sweeter sauce).

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Indian Curry With Sweet Potatoes, Cauliflower and Bok Choy

May 26, 2014

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When we think of Indian cuisine we think of a lot of variety, colorful spices and condiments like jams, dips, raitas, sauces, chutneys and pickles. There is no end to the creativity and combinations. Because it’s all about the flavorful sauces, Indian cooking is great for making vegetarian recipes. Whether there’s meat in it or not, you won’t notice.

Bok choy looks like celery but it’s a member of the cabbage family. It’s packed with vitamins A and C which helps the body resist infections and fight inflammatory free radicals. Bok choy is also a good source of vitamin K which makes your bones stronger delaying osteoporosis and may also help alzheimer’s patients by limiting neuronal damage to their brains.

Indian Curry With Sweet Potato and Bok Choy

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 tablespoon olive or coconut oilIMG_8531
  • 2 chicken breasts, cut into 3/4″ pieces (optional)
  • 2 cups diced onion
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons Penzeys’ Sweet Curry Powder
  • 2 teaspoons McCormick Garam Masala
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 14 ounce can Swanson’s Organic Chicken Broth
  • 1 14 ounce can mini diced tomatoes
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and diced into 3/4″ pieces
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 3 cups cauliflower fleurets
  • 5 small bok choy bunches
  • 1 can garbanzo beans
  • 3/4 cup whipping cream
  • cooked rice
  • mango chutney (Stonewall Kitchen Mango Chutney at Whole Foods is good)
  • Cilantro Mint Sauce (below)

Instructions

Sauté onions and garlic for 5 minutes. Add chicken (if using) and sauté until no longer pink. Add spices and sauté 30 seconds. Add remaining ingredients, except the rice and lime, bring to boil, turn down heat, cover and simmer until the vegetables are tender. Stir in cream. Serve over cooked rice with mango chutney and cilantro mint sauce.
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Cilantro Mint “Pudhina” Chutney

Ingredients

  • 2 cups finely minced cilantro*
  • 1 cup finely minced mint*
  • 2/3 cup plain drained yogurt or lebne
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped sweet onion
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 2/3 teaspoon salt

Instructions

Mix all ingredients in a bowl.

*or mashed into a paste.

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Fluffy Brown Rice

Ingredients
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Rinse rice and lay on a cookie sheet. Place in oven and turn heat off. Let rice dry for 30 minutes. Heat the butter or olive oil and add rice. Stir until all the rice has been coated. You can also let it toast slightly. You can also let it toast slightly. Add the water, bring to boil, reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for 45 minutes. Do not disturb the lid. Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes. Remove lid and fluff the rice with a fork.

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Simple Chinese Chicken and Vegetables

May 11, 2014

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Chinese cooking can involve a lot of ingredients you may not normally have in your pantry, such as fish sauce, oyster sauce, plum sauce, special dried mushrooms, and a wok to cook it right. So this is a simple version of a wonderful cuisine using just a few of their unique ingredients.

Technically sautéing food means that  you are not stirring it all the time so that it browns. In stir frying you use high heat and a lot of oil you   keep moving the vegetables until they are about three quarters cooked and still crisp and bright in color and they don’t brown. This recipe is somewhere between the two. You use medium high heat and the vegetables are stirred often enough so they don’t brown and the vegetables get cooked a little more with the steaming but they still have color.

The vegetables that were chosen along with the cashews was from a Polynesian dish that Trader Vics used to serve. It had a lot of diced celery and cashew pieces and the taste of this combination was memorable.

This is a versatile recipe to suit your taste. You can choose your favorite vegetables, add bean sprouts or some sliced water chestnuts, and, instead of chicken, you can substitute flank steak, partially frozen and cut into thin strips, and beef broth instead of chicken broth.

 

Simple Chinese Chicken and Vegetables

Ingredients

  • 2 chicken breasts or 1 package chicken tenders cut into bite sized pieces
  • 4 teaspoons sesame oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons Coconut Secret Coconut Aminos Soy-free Seasoning Sauce (soy sauce substitute)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, sliced and cut into pieces
  • 6 mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 cups broccoli florets and peeled and sliced stems
  • 3 carrots, sliced
  • 3 celery stalks, sliced
  • 40 snow peas, trimmed
  • 1 14 ounce can chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • dry roasted and salted cashews
  • cooked brown rice

Instructions

Place chicken pieces in a bowl, sprinkle with 2 teaspoon sesame oil, aminos and  minced garlic. Cover and let marinade in fridge for several hours.

Pour chicken stock into a sauce pan, bring to boil and reduce down  to one cup, cool. Pour the reduced stock into a jar along with the  cornstarch, shake and set aside.

Sauté the marinaded chicken in a large heavy non stick skillet (a scan pan works great) until the pink is gone, transfer to a plate and set aside. Add the olive oil and sesame oil to the skillet and sauté the onions and mushrooms for two minutes. Add broccoli, carrots, celery and sauté two more minutes. Cover pan and let steam until broccoli is tender ( a few minutes). Add snow peas and sauté one minute. Sprinkle with the salt. Return the chicken back to the skillet. Push the vegetables and chicken towards the sides of the pan and pour the chicken broth and cornstarch mixture into the middle of the pan and stir until thick then stir everything together. Sprinkle with cashews and serve along side rice or place on top of rice in a bowl for a brown rice bowl lunch or dinner.

Fluffy Brown Rice

Ingredients
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Rinse rice and lay on a cookie sheet. Place in oven and turn heat off. Let rice dry for 30 minutes. Heat the butter or olive oil and add rice. Stir until all the rice has been coated. You can also let it toast slightly. Add the water, bring to boil, reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for 45 minutes. Do not disturb the lid. Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes. Remove lid and fluff the rice with a fork.

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