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Sunday, December 4, 2016

The Ultimate DIY Gluten Free Gingerbread House Guide + how to make a lighted gingerbread house!

Since the holiday season is upon us, I'm re-posting my Gingerbread House tutorial from last year! I hope you enjoy it :)

Those of you who follow me on Facebook probably saw some of my posts this past week as I attempted to make my very first gluten free gingerbread house, and I promised to post about it. I still haven't gotten around to actually decorating it (thanks to having not one, not two, but THREE decorating devices fail on me), but this post should give you everything you need in time to make one yourself!

So in this post you'll find:
* A link to the gluten free gingerbread recipe I used (it's fabulous, and my non-GF hubby really liked it too)
* Links to the TWO different free gingerbread house templates / patterns I used
* A tutorial on how to make a lighted gingerbread house (my first attempt at this and I'm pleased with the results)
* Some suggestions for constructing a gingerbread house
* A recipe for simple, gluten free, dairy free, corn-syrup free royal icing

So let's get crackin', cuz Christmas is just around the corner!!

Friday, December 2, 2016

Vegan, Gluten Free Sweet Bean Paste Buns

Can you imagine something being buttery, without using any butter? And at the same time, being filled with sweet (but not too sweet) goodness?

These vegan, gluten free bean paste buns are amazing, and so addictive! I've been having a hard time not gobbling them one after the other.

And they came about because, a few years ago, I used to live near a Chinese bakery that sold red bean paste buns. After twice-weekly practices with my dance company, I would go into the store and treat myself to a bun.

I've missed red bean paste buns so much since I had to give up gluten, and I've finally managed to re-create them! They're so easy, too. You can use store-bought red bean paste, or make your own according to my recipe. This time, I made mung bean paste since I had split mung beans on hand, but red adzuki beans are most common.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Gluten Free Dim Sum (with vegan options)

Every now and then I get a major craving for dim sum. It's actually really depressing, since Vancouver, BC, has some of the very best dim sum restaurants outside of Asia, and they're everywhere. And once upon a time, back before I found out I was gluten intolerant, I'd go for dim sum at least once a month - sometimes more, depending on my proximity to a restaurant!

That's why when I put together my cookbook Recipes for Unusual Gluten Free Pasta it was very important for me to include some dim sum recipes. I really wanted to try and recreate the things I could no longer have.

And thank goodness I was successful! Dim sum can sometimes be a bit time-consuming to make if you're making more than one or two dishes, but with a little preparation, you can easily make a feast!

The other week I did just that. Here are all the dishes I made...

Friday, November 11, 2016

Gluten Free Lavender Sugar Cookies with Lemon and Lavender Icing

Hi everyone!! I've missed you all enormously. I'm sorry for dropping off this past few weeks, but life has been rather hectic.

We were back in Wisconsin for a bit this fall while my husband finished up his PhD, during which time my poor old back, damaged in a bad car accident a few years back, flared up and left me with excruciating pain, and then my dear old grandmother passed away - peacefully after a good long life, but sad for me nevertheless. I'm also frantically trying to finish my fourth novel. So blogging has been a little low on the totem pole of priorities.

But I'm here now, with a lovely little recipe I've been meaning to share for a while - delicately flavoured lavender shortbread / sugar cookies, made with lavender from my own little deck pot.

I suppose I ought to apologize for sharing them, since I suspect you'll find it hard not to gobble them up, but they're too good to keep all for myself!

Friday, September 23, 2016

Gluten Free Gourmet Pear Pizza (vegan option)

This is my new guilty pleasure. At least, I think I should feel guilty because it's pizza. But since it's healthy, there's really not much to feel bad about, so it's the best of both worlds - I get the thrill of being bad, but I know I'm really being good.

I mean look at it!! It's absolutely smothered in fruit AND vegetables!

Pears AND kale!

It might sound crazy, but it's utterly delicious. Think about these combinations...

Sweet (pears) and salty (feta - optional)
Soft (pears, again) and crunchy (kale & crust).

Oh yeah baby. Pizza night has been revolutionized.

Also, if you happen to be allergic to raw pears - like me - the cooking time can help kill the allergen proteins, so some of you might find this safer to eat than raw pears :) 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

What to do with Squash Leaves and Stems: 9 Gluten Free Ways to Use Squash Leaves (Tenerumi)

This post was originally published on August 18, 2013, but it's such a popular post this time of year I'm bumping it up so that those of you looking for ways to use up your squash leaves can find some suggestions.

Don't forget to check the comments section, as tons of people have been kind enough to share their wonderful recipes from around the world!!

Ever wondered if can you eat squash leaves? 

I noticed these big buckets of fuzzy, curly, decorative squash greens for the first time a while back at the farmers market. We eat a ton of greens, but I’ve never grown squash so it just never occurred to me to question if squash leaves are edible.

I asked the older Hmong lady selling them what to do with the squash leaves. She told me to peel the fuzzy skin off and boil them. This was rather vague, so as soon as I got my bunch home I scoured forums and blogs and found squash leaf recipes ranging from Hmong to Thai to Nigerian to Italian.

I’ve shared 9 different ways I found to make use of squash leaves and stems, as well as some tips for prepping and using them. So if you have pumpkins, zucchini or other squash spreading in your back yard, or you see a bunch of them at your farmers market, go buck wild with these ideas!

Sunday, September 4, 2016

My Gluten Free Weekly Meal Plan

Guys, it's finally cool enough that I can turn my oven on!! I know it's sad to see summer on it's way out the door, but damn if I don't miss Pumpkin Pie, and with the leaves changing colours I think it's the perfect time for it :)

Of course, pie isn't the only thing we'll be eating this week. So keep on reading to see what else we're munching on.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Easy, Gluten Free Microwave Lemon Bars

Woah, Nelly!! Did you know it was possible to make a shortbread/pie-like crust in the microwave?? And that it could be gluten free? I just experimented with this last week and made the most amazing dessert in the microwave.

Mind. Blown. 

So many doors have opened in my brain.

But let's start with these lemon bars. These lemon bars are simply divine. And can be whipped up in no time, without even turning on the stove.

They have a buttery, crispy crust, and the lemon filling is tart, sweet, and all things good. My father-in-law said these were the best lemon bars he's ever had, and I have to agree.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

My Gluten Free Weekly Meal Plan

Wheee! The weather is cooling down a little, and I'm sorry for those of you who love summer, but I'm a West Coast girl and I do miss the rain and cooler weather.

The other upside of that is that it means I can turn on my stove again once in a while :)

Regardless, though, this week's meal plan is still pretty quick and easy, and stuff that doesn't require a lot of stove-top or oven time. I'm also going out a couple of times this week with girlfriends so I'm making sure there are leftovers for hubby to snack on (although he does make a pretty mean pasta when he wants to!)

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Easy, Gourmet Gluten Free Microwave Macaroni & Cheese (Vegan Option)

Well, it's still hot here in Vancouver, and I very much dislike turning on my oven in this sort of weather.

Recently, I posted 15 Easy, Vegetarian and Gluten Free One-Pot Meals, almost all of which can be made on the stove top in under 30 minutes, and thereby cutting back on time spent slaving in a hot kitchen.

But when the thermometer outside hit 40C / 104F even that 20-30 minutes seemed too much. So I turned to Google and my microwave...

And ended up making this delicious, gourmet gluten free macaroni and cheese in a mug. It's waaay healthier than most packaged stuff, so easy, so delicious, easy clean up, and very flexible. There is a chance I may make pasta in the microwave forever more...

I'm sure somewhere in my neighbourhood there is an old Italian lady crying over her pot of putanesca at that statement, but it's true ;) 

Also, if you have kids that love pasta, but you don't want them turning on the stove just yet, or they can't be bothered to pull out pots and pans, this is a super easy recipe for them to make! 

Monday, August 22, 2016

How to Make and Can Crab Apple Jelly - A Step by Step Guide

I've been helping my mom make crabapple jelly for as long as I can remember. We used to have a big tree in our backyard and every year we'd pick a whole bunch of them and make tons of jelly, some of which was gifted to friends and family throughout the year.

Crabapple jelly is one of the easiest jellies to make, and the colour - depending on your apples - is absolutely stunning! But like all jelly-making and canning, it's just a bit time-consuming.  However, I'm going to show you how I do it (with pictures) as quick and easy as possible!

Also, if you're in the canning mood, you  might want to check out my tut on how to make dill pickle cucumbers, it's another canning recipe I've been doing since a little girl!

My Gluten Free Weekly Meal Plan

I'm a little behind posting this week's meal plan, but here it is! It's been super hot again, and I've been working on a new series of recipes based around making meals in the microwave because it is waaay too hot to turn on the oven!

So stay tuned, because I have a couple of recipes coming up on the blog, like easy GF lemon bars, mug pasta, and more :)

But for this week, I'm focusing on one-pot and crock-pot meals, to keep the heat out of the kitchen!

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