Close up shot of baked gluten-free cheese crackers.

Gluten-free Spicy Cheese Crackers

Here is another recipe you can prepare for a holiday party. These crackers are really easy to make. I used Parmesan cheese, but these would be good with just about any cheese. If you don’t like garlic and cayenne, you could try other spices like rosemary, onion powder or black pepper. I want to try them again using Pepperjack or sharp cheddar cheese.

Package of shredded Parmesan cheese.

I used Parmesan cheese, but you could use any cheese you like.

I would recommend rolling them out as thin as you can, to make them crispier. I was afraid they would fall apart when I transferred them to the baking sheet, so I rolled them out to about 1/8-inch thick but I wish I had gotten them thiner. After baking, they were crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. Still good, but not quite a crunchy cracker.

After the crackers cooled, I put them in a bowl with a lid on top. (Milo kept sniffing around and I wanted to remove the temptation!) The next day they had lost their crispiness, so I put them on a tray in the toaster oven for about 10 minutes and they came out crunchy and very good.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour (I used Carol’s Sorghum Blend)
  • 1 cup grated cheese
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup oil (I used olive oil)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • grated cheese to sprinkle on top (optional)

Carol’s Sorghum Flour Blend:

  • 1 1/2 cups sorghum flour
  • 1 1/2 cups potato starch (not potato flour) or cornstarch
  • 1 cup tapioca flour/starch

Instructions:

Whisk together dry ingredients. Stir in cheese.

White mixing bowl with flours, spices and cheese.

Mix dry ingredients together, then add the cheese.

Mix with oil and water to form a ball of dough. Cover and place in the refrigerator to cool for about 15 minutes.

Ball of gluten-free cheese cracker dough in white mixing bowl.

The cracker dough was soft and slightly sticky.

 

Roll out in sections on floured wax paper and cut into slices or wedges. Sprinkle with additional grated cheese, if desired.

 

Gluten-free cracker dough rolled out on wax paper with some of the crackers cut out of it.

I sprinkled some flour mix on a sheet of wax paper, rolled out the dough to about 1/8-inch thick and cut it into rectangles.

Gluten-free crackers on baking tray.

Crackers cut out and ready to bake.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes until crackers reach desired crispiness. Top with your favorite topping or eat them just as they are!

Baked gluten-free cheese crackers piled up on an oblong plate.

Baked cheese crackers ready for snacking!

These crackers can be made ahead of time and frozen for later use. Warm them up in the oven for a few minutes if they lose their crispiness.

Close up shot of baked gluten-free cheese crackers.

Recipe adapted from Balance & Elegance. Thanks Kaci-Ann!

 

Milo graphic

Milo says….

Wake up wagging and the world wags with you!

Merry Christmas from Maizy and Milo!

Merry-Christmas-Eve-Snoopy-4

 

Two rolled up gluten-free crepes with vegetable filling on a plate.

Gluten-free Crepes

I had never made crepes before I tried this recipe. I was amazed by how easy they were to make and how good they tasted! I also made up a kale, mushroom and cheese filling to go inside and it turned out really good. The crepe recipe came from Barbara Kliment at the Nebraska Grain Sorghum Board. Thanks Barb!

Crepes:

  • 1 cup Carol’s Sorghum Blend
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs beaten
  • 2 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups milk (I used almond milk)

Carol’s Sorghum Flour Blend:

  • 1 1/2 cups sorghum flour (or brown rice flour)
  • 1 1/2 cups potato starch (not potato flour) or cornstarch
  • 1 cup tapioca flour/starch

Stir together flour mixture and salt in a small bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and melted butter.

Two bowls, one with beaten eggs, one with mixed flours.

Eggs mixed with butter and flours.

Add milk and mix until well-blended. Add flour mixture and whisk until batter is smooth. The batter should be thin, pourable and not very elastic.

Mixed crepe batter in a metal bowl.

The batter is very thin.

Heat a non-stick 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. When pan is hot, ladle 1/4 cup of batter into skillet, swirling to spread evenly and thinly.

Crepe batter in green teflon frying pan.

Here’s the first crepe cooking in the frying pan.

Allow the batter to cook until set but not crispy (1 to 2 minutes). Flip crepe over with a wide spatula. Allow the other side to cook for about 30 seconds.

Crepe cooking in skillet.

The first one didn’t look that great when I flipped it over, but each one got a little better.

Remove crepe from the pan and cover with a moist paper towel. Repeat with remaining batter and stack crepes, covered, until ready to serve.

Cooked gluten-free crepe on plate.

Finished crepe ready to put in filling.

Fill with your favorite filling and enjoy! (My filling recipe is below) Makes about 10 crepes.

Filling:

(I made this before making the crepes)

  • 6 slices bacon, fried and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 large white onion, chopped
  • 4 cups chopped kale
  • 5 large white mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tsps dried basil
  • 2 cups shredded cheese (I used Italian six-cheese blend)
bacon in a frying pan

Frying bacon is a good first step for any recipe!

Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil until tender.

Onions and garlic in frying pan.

Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil.

Add kale, mushrooms and bacon pieces, plus basil.

Chopped vegetables and bacon added to the skillet.

Next the vegies, bacon and basil are added to the skillet.

Cover and cook on medium-low until kale is tender and mushrooms are cooked, stirring occasionally.

Lid on skillet with vegetables and bacon.

Cover skillet and cook on medium low, stirring occasionally until vegetables are cooked.

Cooked vegetables and bacon in frying pan.

Cooked vegies and bacon for filling.

Add Italian blend shredded cheese and stir to mix in. Remove from heat and set aside until crepes are ready.

Cooked vegetables in skillet with cheese added and stirred in to melt.

Add cheese to filling, remove from heat and set aside.

Package of Italian six-cheese blend.

I used an Italian shredded cheese blend. You could use whatever cheese you like best.

Crepe with filling on top.

Added the vegie-bacon-cheese filling and gently rolled it up.

I also warmed up some frozen blueberries in the microwave and tried them in a couple of crepes. Marvelous!

Gluten-free crepe with blueberries inside on plate, one bite cut off.

I tried some with warmed up blueberries, too – yummy!

 

 

Milo graphic

Milo says….

Maizy was easy to train. I just sit straight, hold out my paw and she KNOWS she is supposed to give me a treat!

 

Gluten-free ginger cake slice on dessert plate.

Gluten-free Fresh Ginger Cake – FAIL

This week’s baking project was a near-disaster for me. I was really excited about this recipe – I love the spicy flavor of ginger in baked items. But I made several errors on this one and it came out pretty bad. I decided to go ahead and post it anyway – maybe someone out there will benefit from my mistakes. I’m sure this is a good recipe when followed correctly. All of the mistakes were mine.

The biggest mistake I made was I didn’t read the directions carefully enough and I chose the wrong size cake pan. I used a 1.5-inch deep pan that you would use for a layer cake instead of a 3-inch deep pan. I don’t know what I was thinking! When I put the batter in, it came almost to the top. I should have known it wouldn’t have room to expand. It overflowed the pan while baking and I was really glad I put a cookie sheet under it.

Cake with overflowing batter spilled out onto cookie sheet.

Imagine my surprise when I opened the oven and found this. Hmmm. Something is not quite right here!

The cake that was left in the pan was moist inside, but really crumbly. I think this might have been because of the changes I made to the recipe. I didn’t have any sweet rice flour (I can’t seem to find this at any of my local stores), so I used two cups of Carol Fenster’s gluten-free flour blend. (1.5 cups sorghum flour, 1.5 cups potato starch and 1 cup tapioca flour) I also had only 1/2 cup of corn syrup, so I made up the difference with some dark molasses. Additionally, I mixed the baking soda in with the other dry ingredients instead of putting it in with the syrup and hot water. I’m not sure what this is supposed to do, but it might have made a difference. Another thing that might have helped my cake was an adjustment for higher altitude. I live at 3600 feet above sea level and cakes sometimes turn out crumbly here if you don’t make adjustments.

Gluten-free ginger cake on a plate.

The cake was pretty crumbly around the edges when I took it out of the pan.

The flavor of the cake was very spicy with fresh ginger flavor. Even though the texture wasn’t great, it was still pretty good with some vanilla ice cream. I’m posting the original recipe below without any of my changes. I hope you have better luck if you try this recipe. Be sure to read all of the instructions carefully!

Gluten-free ginger cake in a yellow bowl with some vanilla ice cream.

The spicy taste of the cake went really well with vanilla ice cream – and it didn’t matter if it fell apart!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sorghum flour
  • 1 cup sweet rice flour
  • 2 tsp dried ginger powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 35g ginger root, finely grated (1/4 cup = 35g)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup (Beehive) corn syrup (you can replace with light molasses)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Instructions

Preheat oven to 325°F. Generously butter an 8-inch round, 3-inch high spring form pan. Line bottom with parchment paper and place on baking sheet.

In a bowl mix together sorghum and sweet rice flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger powder and ground cloves.

In a small pan stir together boiling water, corn syrup and baking soda until completely dissolved.

Place eggs and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat until light, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to medium low and add olive oil, beating until just combined.

Add grated ginger and mix to combine.

Add flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the corn syrup mixture, scraping down as necessary. Batter will be very wet.

Pour batter into prepared pan and transfer to oven. Bake at 320-325°F for 50 minutes.

Let cake cool slightly before removing ring.

Serve warm or cold as it is or with a giant dollop of fresh whipped cream beside each slice.

Recipe from Simple Gluten-free Kitchen. (Sorry I made such a mess of it! I’m sure it’s great if you make it correctly.)

 

Milo graphic

Milo says….

Be yourself. No one can say you’re doing it wrong!

 

Three gluten-free coconut-lemon cookies on a dessert plate.

Gluten-free Coconut-Lemon Cookies

Holiday parties are always uncomfortable for those of us with celiac disease. How many times have you experienced that awkward moment at a party when you realize there is NOTHING on the buffet table that you can eat?

I have found that it helps me if I can bring something to the party that is gluten-free. Then I know there will be at least one thing available for me to eat. I just ask the host/hostess if I may bring a gluten-free dessert and that usually opens the door for more discussion about what other foods are being served and if I might need to bring a main dish I can eat.

Here is an easy-to-make recipe for some cookies I think will work perfectly for gluten-free party snacking.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cups almond flour
  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (plus extra for rolling)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons butter, gently melted (not hot)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest (I used dried lemon zest)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Combine the almond flour, 1 cup shredded coconut, coconut flour, and sea salt until thoroughly mixed. I used a food processor to chop up the coconut into smaller bits then transferred it back into a mixing bowl. If you have a large food processor you can probably mix the dough it in as well.

Food processor with flour and coconut mixture inside.

I used my food processor to chop up the coconut and mix the dry ingredients.

Add the honey, coconut oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla to the dry ingredients. Stir until dough forms.

Ball of gluten-free coconut-lemon cookie dough in a large brown mixing bowl.

I mixed in the wet and dry ingredients in a large bowl with my hands to make a nice ball of dough.

Pinch off small portions of the dough and roll into 1-inch balls. Coat the balls in the extra shredded coconut if desired. I had trouble getting the coconut to stick to the outside of the balls, so a made a small divot in the top and smashed some coconut down into it.

About two dozen cookie dough balls covered with coconut on parchment paper and baking sheet.

Coconunt-Lemon cookies on parchment paper ready to bake.

Place the dough balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 250ºF for 20 minutes. Rotate the pan halfway through the cooking time.

Baked cookies on cookie sheet surrounded by bits of toasted coconut.

The cookies didn’t spread out while baking and turned a nice golden brown.

Cool completely before serving. Store the cookies in the refrigerator in a sealed container.

Closeup of some of the cookies on the baking sheet.

Gluten-free Coconut-Lemon cookies ready to taste.

You can also enjoy these as a no-bake snack by putting the dough in the refrigerator until firm rather than baking it.

Makes about 24 cookies

Adapted from Lemon Meltaways in the Spring 2014 issue of Simply Gluten Free magazine.

 

Milo graphic

Milo says….

I don’t know what you are eating, but I WANT some!