Wednesday, September 26, 2012

frozen pizzas and pizza puffs

I tried two new gluten free pizza's I ordered from the gluten free mall.  Udi's and Contes Margherita pizzas.   Now I LOVE Udi's breads, so I was certain I would love their pizza.  I didn't.  It really didn't have much flavor, which was a let down.   I may give their pepperoni pizza a try, as sometimes, that's enough to spice up a bland pizza.   The Contes was good.  I might still add a little extra flavor to it, but overall, a good frozen pizza.  Nice crust, lots of toppings, and it smelled and looked like a real pizza.  
I did try a new pinterest recipee out last week, for pizza puffs.  It wasn't bad.  I would make it again.   I think though, that I need to find a better pepperoni to put in it, as mine was a little extra greasy.  I know pepperoni is greasy, but this had a little extra which can hurt the tummy.

Pepperoni Pizza Puffs
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup cubed pepperoni
  • 1/2 cup store-bought pizza sauce
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 24-cup mini-muffin pan. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, Italian seasoning; whisk in the milk and egg. Stir in the mozzarella, Parmesan and pepperoni; let stand for 10 minutes.
2. Stir the batter and divide among the mini-muffin cups. Bake until puffed and golden, 20 to 25 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, microwave the pizza sauce until warmed through. Serve the puffs with the pizza sauce for dipping.

What's in my rice?

Even before the gluten sensitivity diagnosis, rice has been one of my favorite foods.   I especially love brown rice.  In the gluten free world, most everything that is bread or dough related has some sort of rice flour.   Which again, made me happy, as I am down with rice.
Then this week, we find out there are high arsenic levels in rice??? Or , shall I say, higher levels then are permitted in our drinking water.  All because this super yummy food is extra absorbent and sucks it right out of the soil and/or pesticides?
Now they are suggesting maybe boiling 1 part of rice in 6 parts of water and drain off the water to dilute the issue.   Interesting.  To me, that seems like the levels are a bit of an issue then.  

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Vacation and family

I haven't been feeling well the past week or so, so I haven't been trying or doing much. With that said, I did try a new gluten free ravioli from Conte and it was yummy. Ken said he wouldn't have known it, or the garlic bread I made with Udi's whole grain bread, were gluten free. SCORE! If I wouldn't have been so hungry, I would have taken pics. I also ordered and received some gluten free breadcrumbs recently, and look forward to giving those a shot! They were from Mozzarelli's To meet their minimum order requirements I also ordered some frozen pizza dough's. I still have the Gnocchi from the gluten free mall to use, for the mac and cheese recipe from Pinterest with gnocchi's instead of macaroni noodles. Mmmmm, I love fall, or as Ken referred to it when I talked of Crockpot season, the fat season. So be it. :-)

We are going on vacation the first week of October with my family. I am excited to get back to Massachusetts, which we love, but haven't been able to get to in a long time. Also excited to try some of the gluten free places I have already found there. I will have my gluten flam pills with me, as, if Sugar Mags has their carrot cake pancakes I will be partaking! After the past couple of years, losing some relatives that really were some of my favorite people, family medical dramas and everything else that goes on in a day, it will be really nice to get away. And as my Mom says, we never really had family vacations growing up, so this will be good. Although it's 8 hrs in the car with my family. I think I owe Ken big for this one!

On the note of Grandpa's passing, his house goes up for sale next week. I am filled with deep sadness and relief over this. I hate to see it go, and that it really is the final part of it all, and while not everyone understands it, we still have that place to go to right now. It's still a part of him, that's tangible. Once it's sold, it's done. Even thinking about it makes my eyes well up. He built that house for his family. He raised his family there. Watched children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, run freely. Made wine there, holiday meals, memories. So many wonderful memories. Even all the family BS that has come about since his illness and subsequent passing can't make me forget the good memories. Some moments in time, are cherished more than any object can ever be. Even with all that, I am relieved that it’s close to no longer being a tie to the relatives that are so very caustic.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

New things

So, I have been wanting to try the soft pretzel recipe out of Nicole Hunn's , Gluten Free on a Shoestring.   The first time, the dough did not rise, and I thought it was because of the temperature of the water.  Not having a thermometer, I just judged the temp based on how it felt in relation to my skin.  I threw that dough out.   I got a thermometer, and measured everything and put it in the food processor, with the correct blade, and I think it may have risen a little. They didn't' roll out as they should and the texture seemed way off.   But I decided instead of scrapping this one, I would bake them out anyhow.   Flavor wise, they weren't bad.   I believe though, the issue with the rise is that I use the Splenda sugar blend, which I read was still good for yeast, instead of regular brown sugar.   I think I will give this a third try and use real brown sugar and if it doesn't rise then, then I am not meant to conquer this recipe.  My goal is to get the dough to rise correctly so I can convert it into pretzel bites and make a cheese sauce and have my own homemade pretzel bites :-)
My mother has bought me a box of a Chia Chocolate Chip Cookie mix to try.   Now, I prefer to make my own, but I wanted to give it a shot.  While they weren't bad, I wouldn't be rushing back to buy the mix.   Just prefer the good old fashioned homemade chocolate chip cookies.  
I am looking forward to trying the family Pizzelle recipe with Better Batter.  I think it will be nice to have some again.  I miss certain family favorites and looking to convert all to gluten free that I can.  Biscotti are next!!
Next week a few girls from work and I that are all Gluten Challenged are ordering out from Wild Tomato for lunch.  I am excited.  I am hoping to get the Mushroom-o-Rama pizza I swear I ordered Friday, but got a regular instead?  Also that same day, a few girls from work and I are having drinks at Flinchy's which has gluten free options.  I am excited.  
Ken and I are also trying to plan a vacation with my parents, as we all need a get away after all that has happened in the family the past two years and my parents really haven't had a real vacation in ages.   I think we are finally heading back to New England.   woo hoo!!!    Ken and I have been wanting to go back there for a few years now and I am glad to be able to get back up there in the fall.  

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Labor Day weekend

We went up north to visit Ken's family for the Labor Day weekend and hit up the Grotto while we were there. I must say, I got the gluten free pizza with pepperoni this time, much better than I remembered the last one being. I quite enjoyed it. Unfortunately we didn’t' have time to go to the Dough Company too, but next trip I am sure we will. In fact, I found on the gluten free registry that the sushi place up there, Katana, has gluten free soy sauce, SCORE!
Next week the fellow gluten free ladies and I are having Wild Tomato for a little luncheon of our own. I know, surprise, I am eating Wild Tomato. I can't help it, it's good and they have soooooo many options. One of the ladies at work is also a fan, and I brought in some leftovers for another and she loved it. So I figure, why not expose a few more to it and see if I can keep bringing on new fans? I believe if you like a business, support it. There are so few places that offer not only the options but the care and customer service that Wild Tomato does, that I want to do my part to keep it around.
I also found that Annie's makes gluten free single serves of mac and cheese. I still needed to add more cheese to it to make it creamy, but it was delightful :-)
I plan on trying the gluten free pretzel recipe out of Gluten Free on a Shoestring this weekend. I have been dyeing to try it and make my own cheese dipping sauce. I think, this could only lead to good things!