recipe

“Breaded” Chicken- Gluten Free

“Breaded” Chicken – Gluten Free

I love my Mom’s breaded chicken. It was a staple at summer outings. I still make it. Pretty classic, with a flour dredge, egg dip and bread crumbs.

I needed a different option the other day, when making lunch for a friend who can’t eat gluten. I just “breaded” the chicken with potato flakes.  I sometimes use potato flakes as a thickener for veggie soups and the like. I have also used them as a coating for chicken and fish before. Even if you can have bread crumbs, the potato flakes are a fun way to coat chicken, fish or pork. It gives you a nice, crispy crust and is easy, too. The chicken breasts I had were pretty thick, so I cut them into  thinner pieces to help them cook faster, and more evenly. You could also cut them into nuggets, if you prefer. I pan fried, but you can also brown them a little, and finish in the oven, if you prefer.

 

 

Potato “Breaded” Chicken

½ mayo
1 c. potato flakes
Salt and pepper
4 chicken breasts, boneless or 6 boneless chicken thighs
Oil

Spread chicken pieces with the mayo. Season the potato flakes with a little salt and pepper. Place potato flakes on a plate or in a shallow dish. Coat the chicken pieces with the potato flakes, pressing a little to cover well. Heat oil in skillet until really hot. Cook chicken pieces in skillet, on both sides, until golden brown. Turn heat down to medium and continue cooking until chicken is cooked. Serves 3-4.

A Dozen Summer Salads

Purple and Pink Potato Salad

Between cookouts and picnics, it seems there is always a need for more salads. Sometimes I am in the mood for old favorites. Other times, I am looking for something a little different.

Here are some salads I have made that my friends and family really enjoyed. If you are looking for a salad for the holiday weekend – or any time – I think you will find one here that you and your family will enjoy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Purple and Pink Salad

1 lb. purple potatoes

1 lb. red onions

1 c. apple cider vinegar

1/2 c. sugar

1/4 c. water

salt and pepper to taste

1 t. celery seed

1/4 c. oil

Bake potatoes until tender. I used the microwave and it took about 7 minutes, but you can bake in a conventional oven, too. While potatoes are baking, peel, then slice onions thin and place in a saucepan with the rest of the ingredients, except the oil. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 5-8 minutes until onions are just tender. Some of the liquid will cook off. Peel and cube potatoes and place in a bowl. Drizzle with the oil. Add the onion mixture and stir gently. Adjust seasonings, if needed. Chill. Serves 4.

Curry Cauliflower Salad

1 head cauliflower, cooked
½ c. chopped green onions
¾ c. mayo – or less or more depending in the size of the head of cauliflower
1 T. curry powder- or to taste
1 t. hot sauce, or to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
1 c. peanuts

First break the cauliflower into florets. Cook the cauliflower any way you like. I steamed mine for about 5 minutes. You could roast it, or sauté it in a little oil. You want it tender, but still a little crisp. Don’t cook it to mush. I would also advise against boiling it, as it gets too wet. Once the cauliflower is cooked, let it cool down before proceeding. Combine the cauliflower with the green onions, the mayo and seasonings. It was hard to be exact because your head of cauliflower might be bigger or smaller than mine. I could have said 5 cups of cooked cauliflower- but would that really help? Then you’d have leftover cooked cauliflower. Or perhaps not enough. So add a little more mayo, if needed, and adjust the seasonings to suit your taste and the amount of cauliflower you have. Chill and toss the peanuts in closer to serving time. They are fine, even when in the salad for a while, but the peanuts crunchier when first put in.

Curry Cauliflower Salad

Curry Cauliflower Salad

Succotash Salad

Succotash Salad

Cauliflower and Broccoli Salad

Cauliflower and Broccoli Salad

Sweet Potato Salad

Sweet Potato Salad

 

 

 

 

 

 

Multi Bean Salad

Multi Bean Salad

Cucumber and Carrot Salad

Cucumber and Carrot Salad

Pesto Potato Salad

Pesto Potato Salad

Artichoke and Edamame Salad

Artichoke and Edamame Salad

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cucumber and Carrot Salad

This refreshing salad combines carrots and cucumbers in a simple dressing. So easy and fast. Perfect side for your picnic or barbecue.

4 cucumbers, peeled, leaving strips of skin

1 c. coarsely shredded carrots

1 c. thin sliced sweet onion

1/3 c. vinegar- I like cider vinegar in this dish

2 T. Balsamic vinegar

¼ c. oil

1 T. sugar

1 ½ t. salt

Fresh ground pepper

 

Slice cucumbers. Combine vegetables in bowl. Combine dressing ingredients and pour over the vegetables, tossing to coat well. Chill at least 1 hour before serving, Spoon over lettuce, if desired. Serves 4-6.

 

Cornbread Salad

 A little different- people always seem to like this salad. A nice way to use up stale cornbread, too. 🙂

4 c. crumbled cornbread or corn muffins

1 c. shredded mild cheese

1 sweet red pepper seeded and diced

1 c. diced celery

½ c. diced green onion

4 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and chopped

¼ c. chopped parsley

1-1 ½ c. mayonnaise or salad dressing, sometimes I use potato salad dressing or even slaw dressing

2 c. diced fresh tomatoes

1 c. toasted pecans

paprika for sprinkling on the top, optional

 

Place cornbread and next 6 ingredients in a medium bowl. Stir in dressing until desired moistness is achieved. Chill and stir in tomato and nut just before serving. Sprinkle with paprika if you like. Serves 6.

Note: You can add whole kernel corn also if you like.

 

Sweet Potato Salad

A nice twist on potato salad.

3 large sweet potatoes

2 c. corn kernels, fresh off the cob preferred but frozen is O.K.

2 ribs celery, sliced

1 sweet onion, diced

1 c. sweet pepper, seeded and chopped

2-3 T. fresh parsley

1/3 c. oil

1 t. Dijon mustard

3 T. apple cider vinegar

1 T. lemon juice

1 clove garlic, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

½ c. cashews

In medium saucepan boil or steam potatoes until tender, about 20-25 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and place in a large bowl of ice water. Add corn to saucepan and cook until just tender about 2-3 minutes. Drain corn and add to ice water with the potatoes. Once the vegetables have cooled down drain them and peel and cut the potatoes into bite-sized pieces. Place potatoes and corn in a mixing bowl with remaining vegetables. Combine remaining ingredients, except cashews, in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake well before pouring over the sweet potato mixture. Toss to blend and chill until ready to serve. Add cashews just before serving. Serves 6.

 

 

Multi- Bean Salad

1 lb. cooked green beans, sliced

1 can lima beans, rinsed and drained

1 can dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained

1 medium sweet onion, chopped

1/2 c. chopped fresh parsley

1 c. apple cider vinegar

1/4 c. sugar

1/4 c. oil

2 T. Italian seasoning- or whatever herb blend you like

1 T. hot sauce, or to taste

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine beans with onions and parsley in a medium bowl. Combine remaining ingredients in a small bowl and pour over the bean mixture. Stir well and chill a couple of hours before serving. Serves 8.

Pesto Potato Salad

2 lbs. Boiling potatoes, cut into bite sized pieces
1 c. basil leaves
3 T. pine nuts, walnuts or pecans
3 T. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 c. Parmesan cheese
Salt to taste

Cook potatoes until tender. Cool. In blender combine remaining ingredients, except 1 tablespoon of the nuts. Pour blended mixture over potatoes and sprinkle with the reserved nuts. Chill. Serves 6-8.

Just in Thyme Potato Salad

2 lbs. boiling potatoes, cut into bite sized pieces*
½ c. olive oil
¼ c. red wine vinegar
1 T. fresh lemon juice
2 t. fresh thyme leaves
Salt and pepper to taste

Cook potatoes until tender. Drain and toss with the rest of the ingredients and serve right away or chill to serve later. Serves 6-8.

* You can really use any potato you like. I often bake the potatoes whole and then peel and cut up. Cook them any way you prefer.

Mustard Potato Salad

4 lbs. potatoes- I used Klondike Rose and I did not peel them

4 hard cooked eggs, peeled and chopped

1 sweet pepper, seeded and chopped

1 c. mayo- maybe a little less

1/4 c. prepared mustard

salt and pepper to taste

dash of hot sauce

Bake whole potatoes until tender and allow to cool. Cube potatoes into large bowl and combine with remaining ingredients. Chill until ready to serve. Serves 8.

Artichoke and Edamame Salad

1 lb. edamame  (fresh soybeans)*

1 can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped

2 c. cooked corn

1 c. chopped sweet onion

1/3 c. olive oil

1/2 c. cider vinegar

1 t. sugar, optional

fresh chopped parsley

fresh chopped basil

salt and pepper to taste

To prepare edamame steam them, in their pods, until tender, about 8 minutes. Place in cold water. Once cool enough to handle slip the edamame out of their pods. Discard pods and place edamame into a mixing bowl.  Add remaining ingredients and stir to mix well. Chill until ready to serve. Serves 4-6.

* A lot of stores have them in the freezer section. They are in the pods. The pods are not edible. If you don’t have edamame you can substitute fresh lima beans.

Cauliflower and Broccoli Salad

1 small head cauliflower, trimmed and broken into bite- sized pieces

2 broccoli crowns, cut into bite- sized pieces

1 sweet pepper, seeded and chopped

1 c. shredded cheese- I used a sharp cheddar

8- 10 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped

1/2 cup of mayo – or more according to your taste

salt and pepper to taste

Steam the cauliflower and broccoli until just tender/crisp. About 5 minutes in a microwave steamer, 6 minutes in a conventional steamer. Place in a bowl to cool down then combine with remaining ingredients and stir to combine well. Adjust seasonings, if needed. Serves 6-8.

 

Smoky Succotash Salad

1 lb. lima beans, cooked and cooled

4 c. corn off the cob, cooked and cooled

1 sweet pepper, seeded and chopped

1-2 c. cooked ham, diced

Dressing:

2/3 c. sour cream

3 T. apple cider vinegar

2 T. sugar

1 t. grated ginger

1 t. hot sauce, or to taste

salt and pepper to taste

Combine veggies with the ham in medium bowl. In small bowl stir together dressing ingredients until smooth and toss with the veggie mixture. Chill until ready to serve. Serves 6.

 

Homemade Vanilla Pudding

Vanilla Pudding

Homemade pudding is easy to make and tastes great. If you never made pudding before- the effort is well worth it. The actual cooking only takes a few minutes. The most difficult part is waiting for the pudding to cool down.

I was making white cupcakes and had some egg yolks leftover. It seemed like a perfect time to use them to make pudding.

To keep your pudding from getting lumpy- don’t heat it up too quickly. You want the egg yolks to cook slowly, to thicken the pudding, without turning into scrambled eggs. Cooking over medium heat will give you perfect, creamy results every time. Also, whisk the whole time the pudding is on the heat to give you the best results.

 

Vanilla Pudding

 

4½ c. milk or half and half

1 c. sugar

5 T. cornstarch

6 large egg yolks, beaten

1 T. vanilla extract

Heat 4 cups of the milk in a large saucepan, over medium heat, until milk starts to steam. Whisk the sugar and cornstarch together in a  bowl. Whisk in the egg yolks and the remaining ½ cup of milk. Whisk half of the hot milk into the egg mixture until smooth, then gradually whisk the egg-milk mixture into the saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture boils. Continue to cook, whisking constantly, until it has thickened. about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla. Cool slightly, stirring a few times to prevent a skin from forming. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on top of the pudding and refrigerate until completely cooled and thickened, about 4 hours. Whisk before serving. Makes about 5 cups.

 

Easter Egg Biscotti

Easter Egg Biscotti

We made these in an Easter Baking class last night. Everyone enjoyed them. I get so many requests for this recipe, I decided to post it again. This is a treat from my childhood. Rose Dieglio was the mother of my best friend, Debbi. Rose made these every year, and I loved them. Years later, she was kind enough to share her recipe with me.  I always make a bunch to hand out to friends and family. It is a tradition I enjoy very much.

 

The dough is a type of cookie. You roll the dough out in pieces about the size of eggs. Make an intent in the dough and press in a tinted egg. The egg does not have to be cooked- it will cook when the biscotti bakes. Once baked, the biscotti can be topped with a powdered sugar glaze and sprinkles, if you like.

 

Easter Egg Biscotti

1 c. shortening or butter- I use butter*

1 ½ c. sugar

4 eggs

5 t. baking powder

1 t. salt

2 t. vanilla

1 c. milk

6 c. flour

24-30 eggs, plain or dyed

Powdered sugar glaze

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together butter or shortening and sugar. Beat in eggs. Add next 4 ingredients and blend until smooth. Stir in flour 2 cups at a time. Dough should be pliable. If dough is too sticky add a little more flour. Take a piece of dough about the size of a large egg and place on a greased baking sheet. Indent middle slightly and then place an egg in the center, pressing down slightly. It should look like a nest. Continue with remaining dough allowing about 2-3 inches in between as they spread when baking. You can fit 6-8 on a large baking sheet. Bake 20 –25 minutes or until browned on the bottom. Cool on wire rack before drizzling with frosting. Makes 24-30. Store in fridge.

* If using butter- chill dough a couple of hours before baking.

Sugar glaze

2 c. powdered sugar

2-3 T. milk or orange juice

1 t. vanilla

Food coloring, if desired

Mix together until smooth and of drizzling consistency.

Honey Bunnies

Honey Bunny

If you are looking for a fun dish to serve for Easter, you might want to bake a batch of bunnies. The honey sweetened yeast dough, is rolled into ropes, and then the ropes are formed into these bunny shapes. Once the rolls are baked, they are brushed with a mixture of warm honey and melted butter. This is also a fun recipe to make with kids. I make them every Easter. Sweet and so cute, they are sure to be a hit when you make them.

The dough is chilled before rolling, so you can mix up a batch in the evening- put in the fridge- then roll them out the next day.

 

Honey Bunnies

 4-5 c. flour

2 packages yeast

1 t. salt

2/3 c. evaporated milk

½ c. each water, honey and butter

2 eggs

Raisins, optional

Honey glaze

1/2 c. honey and 1/4 c. butter or margarine heated together until warm.

In bowl combine 1 c. flour, yeast and salt. Heat together milk, water, honey and butter until very warm and beat into the flour mixture. Beat 2 minutes on high speed. Beat in 1 cup flour and eggs. Beat 2 more minutes, until batter thickens. Stir in enough flour to make a stiff batter and chill, covered with plastic wrap for 2-24 hours.

Place dough on lightly floured surface and divide into 15 equal pieces. Roll one piece of dough into a 20- inch rope. Cut rope into a 12- inch piece, a 5-inch piece and 3 one-inch pieces. Coil 12 inch piece to form body, five inch piece to form head and one inch pieces to form ears and tail. Place the body on greased cookie sheet and then place the head next to the body, making sure they are touching. Place ears and tail on the bunny, making sure they make good contact with the rest of the “bunny”. I tuck them under a little. Repeat with the remaining dough. Let rise, covered until doubled, about 25 minutes. Bake in a 375-degree oven for 12-15 minutes. Remove to cooling rack and brush with honey glaze. Place raisins on each to make eyes, if you like. Brush with additional glaze before serving, if desired. Makes 15 bunnies.

 

Dough is rolled out and cut into pieces for each of the bunny parts

Dough is rolled out and cut into pieces for each of the bunny parts

Unbaked bunny

Unbaked bunny

A colony of rabbits!!

A colony of rabbits!!

Brushing baked bunnies with honey/butter glaze

Brushing baked bunnies with honey/butter glaze

 

Banana Fritters

Banana Fritters

I had some ripe bananas and wanted to do something different with them. That is where the idea for these fritters came from. I was going to be making some doughnuts later that day, so I would already have hot oil ready for frying. Seemed like a great idea. I was quite pleased with how they turned out. Only a few ingredients, too. Simple to make and a nice change from banana bread.

I started with a couple of bananas, which I peeled and mashed with a fork. I purposely left some small chunks of banana. Then I added eggs and sour cream. I knew the sour cream would add richness and help keep the fritters tender. I also used cinnamon, both in the batter and in the powder sugar I rolled the finished fritters in. I like the combination of banana and cinnamon.

 

The fritters puffed up beautifully when fried. They were just a little crisp on the outside, tender and light in the middle. There is no sugar in the batter. The only sweetness comes from the bananas and the cinnamon powdered sugar I  rolled them in. I think they would be great with a powdered sugar glaze, too.

So here is the recipe. A fun way to use ripe bananas, for sure.

 

Banana Fritters

 

2 large ripe bananas

2 eggs, beaten

½ c. sour cream

1 t. cinnamon

2 c. flour

2 t. baking powder

1 t. baking soda

Oil for frying

1 c. powdered sugar

1 t. cinnamon

 

Peel bananas. Mash bananas with a fork, leaving some smaller chunks. You should end up with about a cup of mashed bananas. Combine in a small bowl with the eggs, sour cream and cinnamon. Combine flour with the baking powder and baking soda and stir into the banana mixture. Heat oil in a pot to 350 degrees. Oil should be at least a couple of inches deep. By rounded tablespoonful drop batter into the hot oil to fry. Only do a few at a time, so you don’t overcrowd them, or bring the temperature of the oil down too much. Fry until golden brown. It will take several minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Repeat with all the batter. You will end up with 2-3 dozen fritters.

Once the fritters are cooled down you can roll them in powdered sugar, cinnamon sugar or even make a powdered sugar glaze. I combined cinnamon with a little powdered sugar and rolled the fritters in that. The cinnamon worked nicely with the bananas.

 

 

Smoky Corn Chowder

Smoky Corn Chowder

 I was defrosting my freezer and found local sweet corn I had frozen last summer. I had forgotten all about it. I wanted to make soup for a dinner with friends, so I decided to use the frozen corn to make this chowder. I also had a pound of bacon, which gave the soup a wonderful smoky flavor. I cooked the bacon in the soup pot, allowing it to get pretty crisp. I removed as much of the fat as I could, but left the bacon in the pot. Then, when I cooked the onions and added the stock, all the little brown bits of bacon in the pot added even more flavor. It was a big hit. A perfect dish for a snowy evening.

Smoky Corn Chowder

1 lb. bacon

1 onion, chopped

2 carrots, peeled and sliced

6 c. chicken stock

2 potatoes, peeled and cubed

6 c. corn – I used frozen corn

2 cups half and half or milk

¼ c. flour

Salt and pepper to taste

Hot sauce to taste

Fresh chopped parsley

 

Cut bacon in 1-inch pieces and fry in a Dutch oven until crisp. Tip pot and spoon out most of the fat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent. Add carrots and stock. Cover and simmer 10 minutes, then add the potatoes and corn. Cover and simmer 15-20 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. In jar with a tight fitting lid, combine 1 cup of the half and half or milk with the flour. Put on the lid and shake until mixture is smooth.  Stir into the pot along with the remaining half and half or milk and cook, stirring often until mixture thickens up. Adjust seasoning to taste. Stir in parsley and serve.  Serves 6.

 

Lemon Liqueur

Lemon Peels in Vodka

I make homemade liqueurs throughout the year, using seasonal fruits. Fall and winter are best for citrus, so it is lemon liqueur time!!! All you need to get started is a jar, some vodka and lemons. Since you are using the peels, best to use organic lemons, if you can find them. Use a vegetable peeler to get just the yellow part of the lemon peel. A little of the white is OK, but too much will make your liqueur bitter. Combine the peels with the vodka in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Now it’s just a waiting game. Once the peels have steeped long enough to flavor the vodka, just sweeten, if you like, and let the liqueur mature a little longer. Well worth the wait. You can use the same recipe to make lime liqueur, too. You can also use half lemon and half lime peels in the same batch for lemon/lime liqueur. You can also add other flavors, like mint, to your mixture.

 

 

Homemade Lemon Liqueur

8 lemons
3 c. vodka
1 c. sugar syrup

Peel lemons using a vegetable peeler. Use only the yellow part of the peel. If you get larger pieces of the white pith, scrape off and discard. Place peels in jar with the vodka. Cover and place in a cupboard.
Steep peels 2-3 weeks. Strain and filter and add sugar syrup. Mature 1-2 weeks.

Note: you can also make lime liqueur with the peels of 8 limes, or use 4 lemons and 4 limes for a lemon-lime liqueur.

Variation: You can also use rum as the base for a great daiquiri!

Note: To make citrus flavors without the peels substitute 2 t. pure extracts for the fruit and add sugar syrup right away. Just steep a few days to mature a little.

Also, lemon or lime are terrific unsweetened, to add to other cocktails. You can make some without the added simple syrup.

Spritz Cookies

Spritz Cookies

Some cookies are really about the memories for me. I remember making pressed cookies when I was a kid. I loved using the machine to press out dough in all sorts of magical shapes. My mother was so kind- she let me make whatever I wanted. We had one Christmas with a whole plateful of camels. The machine we had required turning a handle- watching carefully, and turning the handle backwards to stop the flow of the dough. There are much easier versions of cookie presses today. Mine has a ratchet which pushes out the right amount of dough with one click. I decided to make some little green trees and red flowers this year. These cookies are light and very crisp. Great for having with coffee. They are also fast to make, once you get used to the cookie press. The fun thing about using a cookie press is that you can crank out a high volume of pretty cookies in no time flat. They taste good, too. I used vanilla extract in the little trees. In the flowers, I added some sweet cherry flavor, which paired well with the vanilla.

 

Spritz Cookies

1 c. butter
1 c. sugar
1 egg
1 T. vanilla*
½ t. salt
2½ c. flour
In mixing bowl beat together butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in egg. Stir in vanilla and salt. Tint dough, is desired. Add flour and stir until smooth. Using a cookie press with desired shape press cookies on to ungreased baking sheet. Leave about 1-inch between cookies. Bake in a preheated 375-degree oven for about 10 minutes- cookies should be a light golden color around the edges. Cool on a wire rack. Makes about 3 dozen.

 * You can play around with other flavors. I often add mintextract or a fruit flavor to these cookies.

Date Pinwheel Cookies

Date Pinwheel Cookies

I love the  sweetness of dates, and really enjoy using that natural sweetness in baking. I always seem to make several dishes with dates around the holidays.  These date filled cookies are one of my favorites. Moist and cake-like, with the wonderful flavor of the dates, nuts and citrus zest, these cookies taste even better than they look. The cookie dough, made with brown sugar, has an almost caramel-like flavor. The combination is a winner for sure.

 

Date Pinwheel Cookies

Date Filling

12 oz. pitted dates, chopped
1/3 c. brown sugar
¼ c. water
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1 lemon
Zest of 1 orange
½ c. finely chopped nuts
Combine dates with all ingredients (except the nuts) in a small saucepan. Cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 5-10 minutes. Stir in nuts.  Cool.

Dough
½ c. butter, softened
1 c. brown sugar
1 egg
1 t. vanilla
1¾ c. flour
½ t. baking soda
½ t. salt
In bowl combine butter and sugar and beat until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and beat well. Combine dry ingredients and stir into butter mixture. Divide dough in half. Roll or pat one half of the dough into a rectangle about 7×11- inches in size. Spread with half of the cooled date filling. Starting at long end, roll dough up . Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Wrap rolls in wax paper or plastic wrap and chill in fridge several hours. This dough/roll is pretty soft. I sometimes put the rolls in the freezer for an hour or two before baking to make them easier to slice.
To make the cookies: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice the rolls into ¼ -inch slices and place an inch apart on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake about 12 minutes- or until cookies are a light golden color. Cool on wire rack. Makes about 5 dozen.

New Release: