Review:Ho-Ya Gluten Free Rice Noodle Pho Bowl

I had seen posts on the Canadian Celiac Facebook Support page about these Gluten free Noodle bowls found at Costco. I’d yet to find them. Then to my amazement – I did!

Who doesn’t miss Mr Noodles?! So I’m hoping these will be a nice alternative.

They come in a ready serve bowl with the noodles, flavour oil, soup base and hot chilli powder.

Add hot water to the inside line of the bowl then wait 3 minutes.

The lovely thing about Pho is you can add whatever you want. I added shredded carrots, slices of onions, spiralled cucumber and diced mushrooms.

I didn’t find the soup base overly flavourful. The second time I made up a bowl, I added a 1/2tsp of Epicure Chicken broth powder and a 1/2tsp of Epicure Vegetable broth powder. That seemed to help boost the soup base flavour.

I tend to make these for a lunch on the weekends or dinner during the week as they take time to prepare the ingredients. Since the bowl itself is really just a starting point.

But I’m happy to have this option, and our family has been enjoying them. Have you tried them yet?

Gluten Free Ribs

Who doesn’t love ribs? When I was about to get married a few coworkers highly recommended the LooneySpoon cook books for easy but amazing recipes to amaze my husband.

Since the pandemic, the LooneySpoons Collection cookbook has been regularly referred to, since we have been home and wanting a variety of fresh meals to enjoy. One thing I do love about the recipes is they are easily adaptable – if you don’t have something – you probably have something close to it or atleast can decide if you can still make the dish without it affecting the overall effect. Or if you don’t like what they are adding – substitute your favourite fruit or veggie or spice!

I even came home the other night from work and my husband had used the book to use as his base to make homemade gluten free Mac and Cheese!!

The LoonySpoon cooking books have helped my family be more adventurous since our beginning and have taught me how to play with making bbq sauces and rubs.

Spice Rub:

1 tbsp Brown sugar

1 1/2 tsp Paprika

1 tsp Epicure Chipotle Aioli Mix

1/2 tsp Old Bay Seasoned Salt

1/4 tsp Black Pepper

Mix all spices together in a bowl

If you don’t have any ribs – don’t worry! You can also use pork tenderloin!

If using a pork tenderloin, you will want to pound the pork with a meat mallet until about 3/4 of an inch thickness

Then score one side of the tenderloin in one inch intervals (about the size of ribs) Do not cut all the way through.

Apply the spice rub onto both sides of the tenderloin. Rub in. Then wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to cook. Leaving it overnight in the fridge will give you the best flavouring to the pork. But even a couple of hours in the rub gives the meat a lovely flavour!

When ready to make your BBQ Sauce gather:

2 tablespoons butter

2 shallots minced

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/4 cup Hickory bbq sauce

1/3 cup ketchup

2 table spoons brown sugar

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon Epicure Roast Chicken Seasoning

In a pot melt butter, then add shallots. Stir and lightly cook for about a minute or two on medium heat. You do not want to brown the shallots! Rather, you want to bring out their lovely flavour.

Add the rest of the ingredients, keep stirring. Let it cook for about 5 minutes. Then remove from heat.

Coat the tenderloin before putting on the bbq. Then baste between flips.

Once cooked, cut along the score lines.

Enjoy!

Review: Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Pizza Crust

Well it’s a different Good Friday this year…pandemic, everyone is to self isolate and home quarantine, so we decided to make homemade gluten free pizza!

I had a package of Bob’s Red Mill in the pantry. I followed the directions as per the bag. Simple ingredients needed: warm water, eggs and oil. It was easy to mix. * I did add a sprinkle of Italian seasoning to the dough just for added flavour. This is what it looked like just before covering to let rise:

After the 20 minutes (I left mine longer). As I was busy cooking bacon, chopping mushrooms; …prepping to top the pizza!

This is what it looked like after letting it rest:

I took my time with spreading out the dough and heavily greased my hands with butter. I decided to place a sheet of parchment paper over top of my pizza stone. I sprinkled corn meal over the paper.

I found the dough easily spread out over the stone/paper. I tried hard to make a thin crust.

I did not follow the recommendation to bake the crust for 7-9 minutes before putting on sauce and toppings.

I immediately just put sauce and toppings on. I preheated the oven to 425F. I baked for 25minutes and it came out lovely.

It’s a nice crust!

Easy to make!

The crust does have a very yeast flavour – so I do find adding a seasoning (such as Italian seasoning) to the dough helps.

But it is nice to make a homemade pizza every once in a while.

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

Pear Salad

Pear salad …..so amazing. It’s more a summer salad. But as we near the end of winter, we need some reminder of warm summer nights.

If you have never tried this version of pear salad — you must! You won’t be sorry!! And if you want to show off to friends and family – make this salad the next time they are over!

The red wine vinegar and Dijon mustard help give the dressing the right amount of zing, while the goat cheese brings the settle balance to the sweetness of the Bartlett pear.

Ingredients

Spring salad mix

2 Bartlett pears (Dice up 1pear per person)

125g Soft unripened goat’s milk cheese – crumbled

2/3 cup olive oil

6 tablespoons red wine vinegar

3 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 cloves diced garlic

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cracked pepper (or more to taste/preference)

200g crushed pecans

1/4 cup white sugar

Directions

1) In a frypan over medium heat, stir 1/4 cup of sugar with the pecans. Continue to stir gently until sugar melts and caramelizes. Be patient. Don’t turn up the heat or it will burn. Trust me.

Carefully cool on parchment paper.

2) In a 1 cup glass measuring cup blend the oil, vinegar, sugar, mustard, garlic, salt and pepper. Let it sit for atleast an hour. Ideally, the longer it rests, the better the dressing flavours blend together. I try to make it the morning of the day I want to enjoy.

This dressing recipe makes enough for 4+ servings. The dressing is even flavour wise better the following day.

3) I layer lettuce, goat cheese, diced pear and candies pecans.

Layer 1:

Layer 2:

Drizzle the salad dressing over top and serve promptly. Enjoy!!

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**

End of Summer Gluten Free Bean Salad 

Hard to believe the end of summer is here. Back to school, work and Fall. 

As I grapple with behaving and eating healthy, I decided to make a bean salad to take for my lunches this week. 

At a recent Farmer’s Market in Muskoka, I bought a dried bean salad mix from Spill The Beans ( www.spillthebeans.ca ) This seems easy and my bean mix selection is already done for me. 

I have modified the Spill The Bean recipe slightly as I didn’t have all the ingredients she recommended to add to her “Hearty Fearty” bean salad. 

1) Soak the dried beans and then cook as per the Spill The Bean packaging 


2) I diced up a red onion, 1/2 cup of mini carrots and a cup of peas from fresh pods 


3) I whipped up the recommended salad dressing: 2/3 vinegar, 2 table spoons honey, 1/2 cup of oil. I added 1/2 table spoon of freeze dried cilantro. 


4) after the beans cooled, I mixed in my other ingredients, then poured in salad dressing over the top! 

Voila my lunch is made for the week! 

Enjoy! It’s yummy! 

And check out Spill The Beans! Highly recommend! 

www.spillthebeans.ca

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/

Chicken Stirfry 

I don’t always think to do stirfry in the summer. Maybe because we tend to think BBQ and fresh salads for summer. After a large family gathering, I was left with a variety of fresh veggies from my veggie tray – button mushrooms, carrot slices, peppers, mini tomatoes and broccoli. 

A stir fry seemed like the most logical option to ensure I wouldn’t waste my veggies! 

Throw in some left over chicken and an easy chicken stir fry is created! 

Chicken Stir fry: 

Sliced vegetables – carrots, mushrooms, peppers, broccoli, tomatoes…it really is endless 

1 can of  Sliced water chestnuts – they bring the crunch 

Pre-cooked chicken cut in strips or chunks

1 small cooking onion – diced 

2 Tablespoons Gluten Free Soy Sauce 

1 Tablespoon of Gluten Free  worstshire sauce

2 Teaspoons white sugar 

1/4 cup + 1/3 cup vegetable broth 

1/4 Teaspoon (heaping) of Chinese Five Spice

2 Tablespoons Corn Starch 

2 Tablespoons Sesame Oil 

Rice Noodles – I like the super thin style. Rice Stick is the style I prefer:


Preparation: 

1) Heat up Wok. Drizzle Sesame oil on wok. Drop in diced onions. Cover. 

2) Mix up onions. Throw in vegetables. Pour in 1/4 cup of vegetable broth. Cover for 5 minutes. Stir. Continue to cover for 5 minute intervals until veggies are cooked to your liking. 

3) Add chicken. 

4) In a large measuring cup mix remaining vegetable broth (1/3 cup), Soy sauce, worstshire sauce, sugar, five spice and corn starch. Mix well and add to the wok. Cover and mix after 5 minutes. 

5) Mix in dry noodles. Cover for 5 minutes. Stir, cover and repeat until noodles are tender.  

Enjoy!