Review: Epicure Greek Dressing Mix

I have heard a lot of great things about Epicure. Being a gluten free family, I was curious and excited when I heard their products were gluten free! We found their Greek Dressing Mix to be amazing and flavourful!

Creamy Greek Feta Pasta Salad

Ingredients

Epicure Greek Dressing Mix

2 Tbsp crumbled feta cheese

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 basil olive oil

2/4 cups mayonnaise

1 chopped green bell pepper

2 diced green onions

10 garden tomatoes

1 1/2 cups gluten free Pasta

1) cook pasta al dente as per package. Let cool.

2) mix and whisk together vinegar, mayonnaise and oil to make the dressing

3) toss together ingredients with salad dressing

Enjoy!

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Sour Cream Peach Pie

I grew up eating traditional peach pie. Similar to a basic apple pie recipe. Then I meet my future husband and all he talks about is his love for peach pie. So I do what every new girlfriend would do. Bake a pie.

But my pie was not like his moms….. where was my cream filling?!?!

My pie was not what he was envisioning …so I had to learn how to make it.

The creamy filling compliments the peaches and has become a regular staple come peach season. Enjoy!

Ingredients

9inch unbaked gluten free pie shell

3/4 cup sour cream

1/2 cup white sugar

1/3 cup gluten free flour

1/2 tsp almond extract

4cups peaches, peeled and cut

1/4 cup brown sugar

1) Get your crust and pie shell ready. Set aside.

2) To start, it’s best to put peaches in hot water to help them peel easier.

Let them sit in the water while making the cream. Trust me! They will peel so nicely.

3) combine sour cream, sugar, flour and almond extract. Stir until smooth.

4) Alternate layers of peaches and cream mixture in pie shell ending with cream mixture.

5) Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 20minutes then reduce to 350 degrees.

Bake until filling is thick and bubbly about 35minutes.

6) Sprinkle with the brown sugar and broil until gold brown. *beware it can burn quickly. Keep an eye on it*

Cool before cutting

Enjoy!!

Gluten Free Peach Cobbler Muffins

It’s that time of year – heavenly Niagara On The Lake Peaches. There are so many ways to enjoy peaches! When I saw this Triple Tested Chatelaine recipe in the August 19, 2019 Hello Canada Weekly (No 674) Magazine, I just had to try to convert it to gluten free! It sounded too good not too!

*I did do some modifications – instead of plain yogurt (which I didn’t have, I subbed in the rich and creamy Liberte Mediterranee 9% yogurt; As this was originally a gluten recipe they called for all purpose flour – I created my own mixture of gluten free flours.

Ingredients

Cobbler mix

1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp xanthan gum

1/3 cup cold unsalted butter cubed

Muffin mix

1/4 cup ground almonds

1/2 cup brown rice flour

1 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill All Purpose Gluten Free Flour

1 tsp xanthan gum

1 cup white sugar

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1/8 tsp nutmeg

2 eggs

2/3 cup Liberte Mediterranee Coconut yogurt

2/3 cup olive oil

1/4 cup hot water

2 tsp vanilla

2 1/2 cups diced peaches

Position rack in centre of oven. Preheat oven to 375F.

Combine cobbler mixture of flour, sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Add butter. Mix together until crumbly. Set aside.

In a large bowl, Whisk flour with sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg.

In a medium bowl, whisk eggs, yogurt, oil, hot water and vanilla. Stir into large bowl flour mixture until combined. Stir in peaches.

Divide batter among muffin liners. I like silicon liners as they are reusable. Fill to the top.

Sprinkle the cobbler mixture generously amoung the muffins. Remember these are gluten free muffins. The mixture will be quite sticky. But don’t worry – it will taste amazing and mix within the muffin mix.

Bake until a toothpick inserted into the centre of a muffin comes out clean. 30-40 minutes. Transfer muffins to a rack to cool.

Enjoy! These are full of flavour and super moist! You won’t believe that these are gluten free! Xo

Review: The Wheatless Gourmet Gluten Free Puff Pastry Sheets

I was so excited when I saw this product!! Finally Gluten Free Puff pastry?!?! Eeek

So I bought some at our local gluten free specialty bakery. They warned me on purchased, it took some time to get use to when baking but I ignored any warnings – I was sold at gluten free puff pastry.

First reality check is the lovely puff pastry pictures are only suggestions – it’s a frozen log that takes waaaaay longer than the 20 minutes suggested to thaw. I found closer to 40 minutes.

Once ready, set up your area. I put down my parchment, with a sprinkling of Gluten Free Flour. I gently rollout out a square. I hardly modified how it came due to this being the first time.

Ahead of time, I fixed up 2 apples. Threw them in a fry pan with some unsalted butter, a couple of Tablespoons of ground cinnamon, a splash of orange juice, a 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract and a few heaping tablespoons of brown sugar.

I stirred and let them lightly cook for about 15 minutes.

Set aside.

About a tablespoon or so of room temperature cream cheese as a base, on the pastry then put the cooled apple topping on top. Fold over.

I found I was able to make 3 large apple turnovers with one box.

I did use an egg wash to seal the ends and sprinkled sugar on top before placing into a preheated 350F oven.

Cooked for about 40minutes.

Oh. My. God. It tastes light and just like I remember gluten puff pastry to taste like. Delicious.

A nice alternative to making pastry from scratch! It will take getting use to and will be considered a treat but a nice option to have!

**this review was not sponsored**

Gluten Free Waffles

I do have my own made-from-scratch pancake and waffle recipe.

Fluffy Yummy Gluten Free Pancakes

But let’s be honest, there are many days I don’t have the extra time to do that. With the wonderful gluten free Bob’s Red Mill Pancake Mix, quick, tasty waffles are easy!

What you need:

3 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Pancake Mix

5 eggs

4 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups milk

In a bowl, whisk together ingredients.

Once well mixed, let sit for 10minutes.

It should be a nice thick-like consistency.

We have the Cuisinart Classic Waffle maker. I warm it to half-heat setting first. Then I lightly coat the top and bottom with olive oil.

A 1/2 cup of batter seems to be the right amount to create fluffy, full size waffles. *depending on your waffle maker – temperatures and amounts will vary

I find I need to re-coat with olive oil between each waffle or else a piece always stick!

But trust me when I say these are delicious!!

Enjoy!!

We serve ours with homemade maple syrup!

Simple Fish Dish

On a Thursday night; running late from work, finally get home…what to make for dinner.

In the freezer, is a large fillet of red sockeye salmon. It’s been there a while. When I last cooked the other half of the fillet, my husband complained it was “too strong” of fish.

I remembered what my grandma use to do when she was cooking a strong flavour fish- she’d cook it in milk!!

Ingredients

Fillet of fish

1/4 cup of unsalted butter

1/4 teaspoon of salt

Fresh cracked pepper

1 shallot

1 stick of celery

1 Cup of sliced mushrooms

1 cup milk + more as needed

In a pan at medium heat, melt butter. Spread melted butter around pan. Place fillet in pan. Add milk, salt, sliced shallot, sliced celery. Cover for 8 minutes.

Add mushrooms. Mix sauce. If milk appears to be evaporating, add a bit more. Cover for another 5 min. Cook until fish is cooked to desired consistency.

Serve over rice. Pour the milk sauce over the rice and fish. Enjoy!!

Review: XO Baking Gluten Free Oatmeal Gourmet Cookie Mix

So we hosted some family for dinner. Being a celiac family, while the rest of our family is not can sometimes make meal gatherings difficult and stressful.

When our relative brought us this Oatmeal Gourmet Gluten Free Cookie mix by XO Baking Co. as a hostess gift; I have to admit, it sat in our pantry for quite a while.

I wasn’t expecting the picture and “unforgettably delicious” claim to be true. But on a day when I wanted a “quick” baking treat, I thought I’d try it.

At first, I was a bit disappointed that it is a cookie mix only. From the box I adored the cranberries and hearty appearance of the cooked cookie.

Any add ons from the oatmeal cookie mix are optional and not included.

You will need 1 large egg and 1/2 cup of softened butter.

I added 3/4 cup butterscotch chips, 1/2 cup shredded coconut and 3/4 raisins.

It mixed together really well. Almost reminded me how Gluten cookie dough would stick and mix so easily together.

I used a rounded table spoon to measure out the drop dough on the cookie sheet.

I found they needed 16 – 18 minutes – not the estimated 10-12 minutes to reach a lightly golden state with an oven at 350

I have to say my family was pleasantly surprised with how wonderful these gluten free cookies tasted!!

Chewy and delicious!

When you want to bake some cookies, but want something quick and convenient -this would be a great gluten free cookie mix box to keep in your pantry for such a time!

check out: www.xobaking.com

**this is not a paid review**

Ultimate Gluten Free Cookies

Finding a wonderful homemade gluten free cookie recipe can be difficult. Prior to my husbands celiac diagnosis, I had many family cookie recipes I would make. But ofcourse they all have wheat flour, so I have been working at converting them all.

The cookie dough base of this recipe can be used to make endless cookie possibilities.

Cookie Dough 

1 cup soft butter 

1 1/4 cup firmly packed Brown sugar 

2 Eggs 

1/2 teaspoon vanilla 

1 cup + 1 table spoon Gluten Free Flour mix (I mix 1/2 cup Bob RedMill All Purpose Gluten Free flour, 1/8 cup + 1 tablespoon Gluten Free Coconut Flour, 1/4 cup Gluten Free Chickpea flour and 1/4 cup Only Oats Gluten Free Flour )

1/4 teaspoon guar gum

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

Additions: 

Add whatever your heart desires to the cookie dough. For today’s cookie I mixed chocolate chips, raisins and gluten free oatmeal. But shredded  coconut, cranberries and nuts are delicious additions too! 

1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips 

1 cup raisins 

1 cup gluten free oatmeal. 

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 


1) Preheat oven to 350

2) Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Blend in eggs and vanilla. Add flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Mix well. Stir in gluten free oats. Put in fridge to cool – atleast 20 minutes.

3) use a heaping teaspoon to drop onto parchment paper cookie sheet. Leave space between cookies as they will spread out while cooking


For crispy cookies I bake for 18 minutes:


For more soft cookies I bake for 15 minutes or less. This picture compares my 18min cookies to my 15 min ones. 


As you can see the baked 15 minute cookie on the right is more lighter in colour and less crispy. 

Hope you enjoy these cookies as much as our family does! Even my dad raves about these cookies!

Gluten Free Pho 

I had left over roasted vegetables. Not sure how I wanted to eat them; I decided to make a gluten free vegetable Pho soup. 

The night before,  I had roasted mushrooms, red onion, zucchini, peppers, celery, broccoli and a  clove of garlic in a little olive oil, drizzle of vegetable broth and fresh ground pepper. 

So I dumped the leftovers in a pot, put in a full package of Campbell’s beef broth, a heaping 1/4 teaspoon of Chinese Five Spice, tablespoon of Gluten Free Soy Sauce, tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce and let it simmer. 

In another pot, I cooked up al dente rice vermicelli noodles. 

I placed the cooked noodles on the bottom of the bowls. Then poured in the soup! 


It was a hit! 


Enjoy! 

Summer Memories Relived at Santa’s Village 

It’s kind of funny how in some aspects of raising children, we get to relive or atleast get flash backs of our childhood from our children. 

Except for me, Santa’s Village was a once a summer experience but nowadays most local families have season passes here and the Village becomes more a familiar frequented meeting place. And you get to know the staff…like for example some gate greeters don’t even need to see our season pass card to let us in – they know we have it as we are regular visitors, as they greet us frequently.  

How can that view not take you back?!

Santa’s Village in Bracebridge, Ontario is a lovely little amusement park for young kids. It’s where Santa lives in the summer! 

And what a lovely place it is! And something for everyone!

You can feed the reindeer:

Ride a Ferris wheel of Christmas Balls:

 

Enjoy a train ride all around the park:


Enjoy a boat ride: 


Enjoy Elves Island with fun activities:


Enjoy Kiddie rollercoasters: 



Enjoy the Splash pad. Or as we like to call it “Santa’s Beach” 


Our almost 3 year old loves Santa’s Village. And it’s a hit with my nieces, nephews and friend’s children. 

It’s a must when visiting Muskoka with children to spend sometime with Santa! 

To plan your trip check out: https://www.santasvillage.ca/