Adopt a GF Blogger – A Gluten-Free Gobsmacked Week!
Sea Maiden, over at Book of yum, started Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger as a way of getting to know our online gluten-free community in 2008 and it has been going strong ever since – thank you so much Sea! I have only participated a handful of times under my previous blog, but that was over a year ago. I am happy to say that I have signed up again after my hiatus and I’m glad I did.
I chose Kate over at Gluten-Free Gobsmacked this time around because her blog was the first one that I found after my celiac diagnosis. Even if you’re not following a GF diet, her blog is a wonderfully welcoming site where Kate shares a piece of her kitchen and family. I have been following Kate’s blog for the past few years and I have always left her site with a smile (and a new recipe to try!). Some favourites are Kate’s pita bread, sandwich wraps and cheesy quinoa crackers (and if I allow myself to continue I might as well cut & paste her recipe page).
Now I must be clear here, in order to participate in Adopt a GF Blogger you do not have to choose more than one recipe to try out. However, being the quirky individual that I am, I was unable to choose just one recipe. GF Gobsmacked has so many wonderful recipes to choose from, so many recipes that I have been dying to try out, that I thought I would use her blog as the base for this week’s menu plan. In fact, I would have to say that it was a great plan because it made my menu planning so much easier – lol! So, without further ado, I will get on with the whole point of this post – the recipes!
Chinese Homestyle Chicken & Rice: one word – Fabulous! This dish was absolutely delicious, there was just one problem – it was too spicy for me to eat! The recipe calls for “2 Tbsp. of sweet bell pepper flakes or red pepper flakes.” Well, I have had red pepper flakes sitting in my spice drawer for quite a while and I have been dying to use them in something. It was just before I added them to the recipe that I thought I should double check if they’re really spicy, so I asked my boyfriend. He told me that they were just like sweet bell peppers. Great, I added them in. In my household there are three of us, all with a different tolerance of spicy food. I am on the low end of the scale and my mom loves spicy food. My boyfriend enjoys spicy food as well, but there are certain temperatures that are too hot for him. This was one of those times. My boyfriend was practically in tears eating this, but he still went back for seconds. My mom had seconds too. I had a very small bowl and ate it very slowly. I had to call my dad, the king of spice, to confirm that it was indeed the red pepper flakes that gave it such a bite and he laughed at me. I’m sure that this will be a great joke for quite some time to come, but hey, that’s how we learn. In my personal opinion, this is a great dish that is even more perfect for lunch or dinner in a pinch. It is a one-pot meal and all you have to do is start the rice, mix the marinade while the rice is cooking, cut the meat and toss it in. This is a dish that will be made in my house regularly, sometimes exactly as GF Gobsmacked has it written, and sometimes with my own twist. Chicken & RiceHomestyleChinese
Baked Corn Dogs: I never really knew what a corn dog was until just before my diagnosis. I always heard about them, mostly in reference to baseball games… I think, but I never had one until about a year before I was diagnosed with celiac disease and even then it was only one. These were yummy and very easy to make. The only problem I had was that they were too crispy, but that’s probably because of my oven. I have found in the past that my oven tends to cook at a hotter temperature than others and so I generally have to adjust the baking time; a note for next time. These were great for lunch as either the main meal or just a snack (main meal for me with a salad on the side).
Pao de Quejo (aka “Chebe Bread”): I actually baked these up after I made a batch of the Chebe bread. I have yet to find chebe mixes in Canada and happened to come across some in Bellingham at the Food Co-op one day and thought I’d grab it. As far as I’m concerned, there is no comparison between GF Gobsmacked’s version and the packaged version. GF Gobsmacked wins. I found the Chebe version to taste like my yorkshire puddings. GF Gobsmacked had a beautiful taste. The only thing that I would change is the type of cheese I used, cheddar. I should know this by now because I am rarely a cheddar cheese fan, but for some reason I used it anyway. These buns came out with great flavours (even my dogs & cats liked them as I found them trying to steal them off of the counter).
My final recipe from Kate’s blog was her Teriyaki Sauce - mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm! We used it to marinate our chicken and then grilled it with fresh rosemary. It was 100x better than anything you can buy in stores. The only thing that I changed in the recipe was the mirin. I have yet to find a gluten-free brand in the lower mainland, so I used my sushi vinegar instead. We have officially decided to stop buying the gluten-free teriyaki sauces and invest in more soy sauce to make this recipe.
All-in-all, I loved the recipes that I made from GF Gobsmacked this past week, as I knew I would. What I like the most is that they are versatile and easily adaptable to what you want. Celiac Family has taken two of Kate’s recipes and turned them into burgers for a previous Adopt a GF Blogger and they look fabulous. This is definitely a blog worth checking out for both recipes and light-hearted stories. I also really enjoyed having a week dedicated to one particular collection of recipes and think that I’ll make this a regular plan in the future.
(Don’t forget to check out the Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger roundup!)
*I didn’t get a chance to make the Cast Iron Skillet Pizza this week due to a lack of cheese! I will have to add it to this upcoming week’s menu.