Chicken & Sausage Gumbo: The Cajun Allergy-Friendly Way

At long last… Here is my gumbo recipe!

Gumbo is by far my favorite meal to make.  My mom is from Southern Louisiana and I was raised between Louisiana and Mississippi, always learning from my mom about Cajun food.  The Cajun version of gumbo (which I was taught was the original, but creoles will argue that theirs was first of course), came about a very long time ago, when trappers in Louisiana needed to make food that would last in their tummies but not break the bank.  So, you add a few vegetables, lots of protein, some fat and flour all in a soup, eat it with rice and you can feed a bunch of people with a long-lasting, comforting meal.

At least from what I was taught (I’m no expert, I only know what I was told from stories passed down), Cajuns originated from French Canadian exiles who lived out in the country and on the bayous and made a living from trapping, crabbing, fishing, etc.  Creoles were the Louisiana city folk. I don’t know much about creoles other than the difference in food, however; I grew up with Cajun roots, stories, recipes, etc.

Now, first things first: The number one question I get asked when I tell people I’m making gumbo is ALWAYS, “Do you put okra in it?”  So, to answer that question: No, I do not.  Those of you who happen to be from Louisiana, who are screaming at me through your screens right now, let’s just get that out of the way before we move on.

When I served my gumbo to my aunts and uncles one summer out on our porch and the poor unsuspecting souls saw a bowl of what I called gumbo with NO okra in it… Let’s just say my neighbors got just as much of an earful as I did.  But here’s the thing: Believe it or not, most normal people (Cajuns excluded) do not enjoy the slimy texture of okra and the full texture that it gives to the gumbo. Hard to believe, I know.

Growing up, we hated okra in gumbo, and so did my mom. My dad loved to add it; but when my mom made the gumbo, she never did. I learned to cook it without okra, grew up cooking it without okra.. many of my mom’s very Cajun (as crazy Cajun as they come) family members did not like it with okra.  And although I love okra nowadays, I know most other people in most places around the world–except Louisiana–do not. So I leave it out. Or, I serve it on the side, fried. Everyone loves fried okra, including my picky toddler.  Now that we got that out of the way…

There are MANY different ways to make gumbo. Aside from the Creole vs Cajun versions of roux, there are different main ingredients (seafood vs chicken & sausage, turkey & sausage, or even hamburger gumbo).  But even more than that, the beauty of gumbo–and my favorite thing about making it–is that you can pretty much adapt it however you want to, as long as you make the roux correctly and keep the main ingredients (yellow onion in the roux, celery, chicken and sausage, and green onions at the end) mostly the same. The original Cajun version that I learned only adds a few stalks of celery–more for flavor than anything. But I like more substance when I eat it, plus I love the flavor that celery adds, so I add more.

I LOVE to change things up when I cook, and with chicken & sausage gumbo, you can do that.  You can customize gumbo to your own tastes, but still have gumbo. I have changed the recipe that was passed down to me quite a bit over the years and have adapted my own version. And now, this version is allergy-friendly: Wheat, soy, egg, dairy, nut, and egg free.

Now, I’m sure my Cajun predecessors would lose it if they knew I was calling a butter/lard free recipe gumbo, but I have yet to find anyone who doesn’t like it, because at the end of the day, gumbo is just good!!  My mother was in horror the first time she watched me make my version because I do not use butter, I do not fry the sausage slices before cooking (I like the taste better when they are boiled, and frying them releases more fat anyway), and because I use water instead of chicken broth (I like to add my own flavor).  But when she tried it, she loved it! And she has continued to love it… and now she even makes it this way herself… Especially nowadays when she has watch her cholesterol.

So, feel free to stick to my recipe exactly if that is your thing. Otherwise, stick to the basics, but get creative and have fun with the rest! Add more spice, fresh jalapenos, more poblanos, different color bell peppers, less spice, more herbs, chicken broth instead of water, fry the sausage and use Andouille..  Try it all kinds of ways and see what you like best.

However, please know that gumbo is NOT a quick recipe. A good gumbo will take you at least 3 hours from start to finish. It is a process to prepare, and then it needs to simmer for quite a while once it is all put together. But if your company doesn’t mind hanging out in the kitchen with you, it’s sure to please their taste buds in the end!

There’s just something about gumbo.. It’s made with love and great care.. It’s a special family meal… It’s you sharing yourself with others when you make it for them. For me, it’s sharing a part of my childhood mixed with a taste of who I am now.  Or maybe it’s just a good soup and I’m just weird. But I did come from Cajun bloodlines, so I guess that isn’t too surprising.

Although my mom had the recipe passed down, my dad liked to cook, so he made it a fair amount, so I grew up helping him cook gumbo as well as learning it from my mom.  My first major burn was when I was about 7 years old and I stirred the roux to quickly, splashing it on my knee while my dad went on a potty break;  I, of course, didn’t know to wipe it off because I was too busy crying, so it continued to burn until my dad ran out to see what happened.

When we had company over growing up, my dad was often times standing over the stove scooping the fat off the top of the gumbo, talking at the same time.  It’s a sentimental recipe for me.

And best of all as a parent.. I have not met a child that doesn’t like it!  My toddler prefers it with noodles instead of rice.  But I loved it as a child, my nieces and nephews beg for it, and every child I have ever fed it to, or ate it with growing up has ALWAYS loved it!

So use this recipe and make your own family version!  Make it special!

 

 

INGREDIENTS

1 whole chicken cooked, chopped *
1 bunch green onions, chopped
3 lbs of Allergy-friendly link sausages, sliced **
8 sticks of celery, chopped
2 Bell peppers, chopped ***
1 poblano pepper, chopped small
10 jalapeno slices, chopped small
3/4 cup GF all-purpose flour****
3/4 cup avocado or canola oil (high temperature safe)
1 large yellow onion, diced
6 garlic cloves, minced
Water to cover

Seasonings
For the roux:
1/2 TBS Slap ya Mama *****
1/2 TBS Old Bay
2 tsp salt
2 tsp black pepper

For the gumbo:
2 TBS Old Bay
2 TBS garlic powder
2 TBS onion powder
1 TBS sage
1 TBS basil
1/2 tsp white pepper
6 bay leaves (remove after cooking)
Salt and pepper to taste (probably about a TBS or more of each)

*I buy a rotisserie chicken and pull all the meat off because it saves time. If you cook a whole chicken, here are a few tips:
–boil the chicken to make it a better texture for a soup
–use as much dark meat as possible, because this gives it a better flavor

**I had a VERY hard time finding sausage that was actually wheat, soy, dairy, nut, and egg free. They all at least have vinegar in them (which is often times made with wheat and always causes flare ups with my daughter). I had actually almost given up on trying to make it safe for her. And then I checked Walmart. Of all places I NEVER expected to find it there, but I checked anyway one day when I happened to have time to burn and sure enough, the Walmart brand called Sam’s Choice All Natural Smoked Sausage Original flavor is totally safe and actually tastes great!
Whatever you use, it needs to be link sausage that can be sliced, and a smoked flavor is best usually. If you want a spicier, more Cajun version that little kids will not be eating, use Andouille flavored.

***I usually use 1 red, 1 yellow. Green adds a bit of a bitter flavor (which is good if this is more your style), and is probably the worst option for people with indigestion problems, orange adds the sweetest flavor, so if you like soups more sweet, use orange.

****I use a garbanzo bean flour mixture. This works better than any other gluten free flour that I have tried for a roux. It actually cooks the same as a normal all-purpose flour. Bob’s Red Mill has this version available, although I find mine at a local grocery store for a cheaper price.

*****Once again, thank you Walmart! Slap Ya Mama is a local spice (or at least it used to be), that I never could find anywhere but in Louisiana, so when I moved away, my mother would send it to me me regularly. Now, of all places, Walmart seems to sell it no matter where that Walmart is located, so here in the very un-Cajun Northwest, the only place I find it is at our local Walmart. The yellow can is best. But you can use Tony Chacheres instead, which is usually easier to find.

NOTE: Anyone who is familiar with gumbo may notice that I do not have gumbo file in my seasonings list. Anyone from Louisiana would gasp at this and call me un-American or worse.. BUT, all gumbo file really is is sassafras.. And sage has a similar flavor. So I use what I have in my cabinet and I combine sage, basil, and bay leaves to give it what I believe is a better flavor than just gumbo file anyway. Gumbo file is not easy to find here in the Northwest where I live now, so I learned to improvise.

DIRECTIONS

Soup Preparation:
Chop the chicken and green onions, cover them and refrigerate until it is time to add them to the soup.
Add the sliced sausage, chopped bell peppers, poblano pepper, jalapenos, and celery to a large stock pot (10 quart or more). Fill with enough water to cover and bring to a boil.
Let this part of the soup cook on medium-low heat while you prepare the roux.

It should look something like this:

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Roux:
Have your diced onions nearby the stove and topped with the roux spices and minced garlic.

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In a large saucepan, mix the flour and oil together and turn the burner to medium or medium-low heat (depending on how hot your stove generally runs). Continue stirring with a heat resistant spatula that you can use to constantly scrape the bottom.

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You CANNOT walk away from roux while you are cooking it, so plan to stay at the stove for a good 40 minutes.

If you have a small child who needs to go potty and then makes a mess, and who just gets into everything while you’re cooking and you need to walk away (this is what happens to me), then turn the burner off, remove the pan from heat, and give it a good stir before you walk away.
If you keep the roux heating and you do not mix it constantly, it will burn.

The roux will begin to bubble once it heats up; it will also feel thick and gritty at the bottom.. Keep stirring, side to side, front to back, making sure to keep scraping the bottom.

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The color will slowly change from white, to tan, to brown. Keep stirring. It will take at least 20 minutes before the roux is dark enough (could be up to 40 if you are not comfortable cooking it at a high enough heat).
Over the years, I have burned a few batches of roux, melted a few spatulas, I’ve had the roux boil over and almost start a fire on the stove, and I have even caught a skillet on fire.. (no matter what people claim: never use cornstarch for the roux. I learned that the hard way). So I am pretty cautious when it comes to the heat myself, but don’t worry, it’ll smoke before it catches on fire. But if you’re not using cornstarch in place of flour, you’re skillet shouldn’t burst into flames anyway. 😉

Once the roux is dark brown (like the color of the crust of bread), turn the heat off for about a minute or so until it cools down just a little, but continue to stir and allow it to continue to darken.

It needs to look darker than what is in the following picture. Unfortunately, the picture makes it look lighter than it really is. Remember: The color of bread crust. Dark brown. Unless it is literally burnt black, you can’t over cook it, so don’t worry about it getting too dark; worry about it being too light.

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THIS is the difference between Cajun and Creole roux. Creole’s don’t cook their roux very long; they like it lighter brown. Cajuns cook it until it is pretty much black. I’ve tried the creole way when I’ve been in a hurry. It creates a completely different flavor of gumbo. It gives it a bit of a “nutty” flavor. But it just isn’t nearly as good. The creole version is just weak to me; it tastes like any ole soup with just a little added flavor. It’s noting like the gumbo I know and love, so my recipe will be for a Cajun roux. Sorry Creoles.

Throw in a few pieces of onion, making sure your roux will not boil over right away (bubbling and frying is fine.. that’s what you want). Slowly add the rest, stirring at the same time. It will bubble; and it will want to boil, just keep stirring. Turn your heat back on to medium. You’re basically frying the onions in the roux. It will smell amazing, like fried onion rings and then some if your roux is right!

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Continue stirring until the roux is a very dark brown (almost black) and the onions have softened. Remove from heat.

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Continuing on with the Soup:

Your other ingredients in the stock pot should be nice and softened and blended together in flavor by this time. Now, SLOWLY add the roux to the stock pot. Be careful not to just dump it all in because it can make your soup boil over.

Add the gumbo spices also and mix well. Continue cooking the gumbo over low-medium heat for at least 30 minutes (an hour of simmering on low is ideal, but often I find myself short on time and I make do with half an hour, I just cook it on medium and keep stirring).

While the gumbo is cooking, the fat will keep floating to the top. Take a big spoon and keep carefully scoop off the fat, making sure to not scoop out any other parts of the gumbo. Continue to do this as the gumbo cooks. Dump the fat into a coffee cup or bowl and discard. You can skip this step if you like, but it will be a very greasy soup if you do.

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In a rice cooker or on the stove top, prepare your rice (Jasmine rice has the best flavor).

Once your gumbo has cooked for at least 20 minutes, do a taste test.

Don’t do it before 20 minutes or you will not be able to taste all of the flavors yet. Trust me, I have made this mistake a number of times and ended up adding WAY too much spice because I just didn’t give it enough time to cook before adding more.

Add whatever spices you would like, or think it needs (if any) and continue cooking for the rest of the time (30 minutes on medium or 1 hour on low).

Now add the chicken and green onions and mix well. Once you add these, cook the gumbo for about 30 minutes, and remove from heat. Do not cook longer than that with the chicken, or it will get tough, but on simmer, you can cook for up to 3 hours before adding the chicken. The longer you cook it, the more the flavors will blend together, and the better it will be.

Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you are eating “gumbo” if the vegetables are still crunchy! The vegetables should be so soft that you barely even notice their presence when you’re eating it!  I have tried 2 “Cajun” restaurants outside of Louisiana in my life, and they were a complete embarrassment to Cajun food! The vegetables in the gumbo were crunchy!!  Cajun AND creole tradition is to cook the gumbo for a long time, so please tell me how in the world your recipe is anything from Louisiana if they’re still crunchy??  But, I digress.. And I do not visit so-called Cajun restaurants anymore. I just make my own food for people that come over.

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Scoop about 1/2 cup of rice in a bowl, fill the rest of the bowl with gumbo and serve! You can add more rice if you choose, but the Cajun way is to eat it nice and soupy.

If you like this recipe, check my out other recipes, like, share, and comment!
I will also be adding a recipe for allergy-friendly Crawfish Etouffee soon, so check back in and look for it!

 

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SOO Delicious! Naturally Sweetened Sweet Potato Pie

I am SO excited to share this recipe!!  This was a complete experiment, so the ingredients and directions (for the crust at least) could possibly use some massaging by those true baking experts out there, but this pie is seriously SO good!

It’s like an explosion of flavors in your mouth! And surprisingly, raspberries (raspberries on sweet potato pie you say? Oh Yes!) are SOO good on top!  I took some frozen raspberries, microwaved them just enough to thaw the ice, and put them on top, and it was AMAZING!

This pie is gluten, soy, dairy, nut, coconut, and egg free (hence the experimentation), AND it is actually NATURALLY SWEETENED!  The only sweeteners added are honey, banana, and applesauce. So go ahead and indulge this Thanksgiving! I call this healthy! 😉  And if you have a picky toddler on a limited diet, let them enjoy this lovely treat!

 

INGREDIENTS

Pie Crust:
(For 2 9 inch pie pans)
2 cups GF all-purpose flour (I used a garbanzo flour mix)
1/4 cup sorghum flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup Smart Balance (piled up) *
1/2 medium ripe banana, mashed
1 TBS honey (piled up)
3/4 cup water **

*The green tub of Smart Balance is allergy friendly, just make sure you check the ingredients and get the right one. Any other buttery spread should work for this as well, but make sure it is dairy, soy, and nut free if you are making this allergy friendly. And make it an overflowing 1/3 cup. 🙂
**you may not use all of the water, it will just depend on your dough mixture.
Pie Filling:
3 medium sweet potatoes (about 2 cups)
1/2 cup honey *
1/2 ripe banana, mashed
4 TBS apple sauce (or 1 little store-bought cup)
1/8 cup avocado oil
1/2 cup hemp milk **
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp salt

*Unfiltered honey has the best consistency for this recipe. I use Oregon Raw Honey because it tastes SOO good!!

**I use Pacific Foods Original Hemp milk, not the unsweetened version. Any other milk alternative probably will not achieve the same purpose as hemp milk because of its thick and creamy, so I wouldn’t substitute this ingredient.

 

DIRECTIONS

For the pie crust:

In a medium to large mixing bowl add the flour, salt, and cinnamon and mix well. Add the Smart Balance, or other butter alternative to the flour and cut with a fork or pastry cutter until it is a greasy, blended flour mixture.

In a separate, small bowl, add the honey and mashed banana ( I microwave a frozen half banana; it really makes a great egg replacing consistency this way). Mix well with a fork to blend.

Cut the wet ingredient mixture (NOT the water yet) into the flour mixture until it is a crumbly flour texture.

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Now add 1/3 cup of water, fold and mix with a fork, and continue to add about a tablespoon at a time until the dough is wet enough to roll into a nice ball and stick together.

Split the dough in half and place the first ball in between 2 sheets of parchment paper. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to about 9 inches (a tad bigger than your pie pan).

Transfer the dough into a pie pan (I used glass), scrunch up the top of the crust in whatever design you choose, and place in the refrigerator until ready to use. Repeat with the 2nd pie crust.

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The rest of this recipe is only for one pie, so the 2nd pie crust can either be frozen for the next time you make a pie, or you can make 2x the pie filling and make 2 pies.

 

For the Pie filling:

Peel the sweet potatoes and chop them into large rounds. Place them in a pot and boil until soft.

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Strain, and let the pieces cool, then place in a bowl and mash.

Preheat your oven to 350 F and make sure your rack is on the bottom.

In a medium size mixing bowl, add the honey, banana, apple sauce, and oil.  Using a handheld mixer, mix together until well-blended and smooth.

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Add the sweet potatoes, hemp milk, vanilla extract, cinnamon, allspice, and salt and mix again with the handheld mixer until smooth.

Pour into the prepared pie crust, smooth out the top and place in the oven on the bottom rack for about 45 minutes. Check your crust about halfway through and if it begins to brown too much, cover it with aluminum foil.

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Let your pie cool down to room temperature, cover with saran wrap or aluminum foil, and place in the refrigerator until the pie is chilled. Slice and serve topped with raspberries.

 

As always, if you enjoy this recipe, please like, share, or comment and check out more recipes on my “Recipes” tab. Thanks for visiting and HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

 

 

 

Dinner Ideas

Need help finding dinner for a child (or an adult) on a limited diet?  Here are some dinner ideas and links to recipes that are all wheat, soy, eggs, dairy, nuts (and coconut) free.

 

DINNER 1:

Meatlover’s Potato Soup

Veggie crisps to dip in the soup (see examples of chips/veggie crisps that are safe here)

 

DINNER 2:

(Dinner in a hurry)

Gerber Chicken and veggies soup with quinoa noodles (see pictures here), with steamed carrots and chopped black olives mixed in (I keep a batch of steamed carrots in the freezer so I can add them to things like this).

Sweet potato chips (peel sweet potato, slice into 1/4-1/2 inch slices, toss with avocado oil, salt, pepper, paprika, and chili powder and bake for about 10 minutes on 425. Turn over, bake for a few more minutes, until crispy. Regrigerate and pop in a toaster oven for quick reheated)

 

DINNER 3:

Tangy Salmon Tacos (if your child does not care for these, you can jazz it up a bit by wrapping it like a burrito and frying in avocado oil until browned and crispy. My daughter will eat pretty much anything if I wrap it and fry it!

Peas & corn (I take out some frozen sweet peas and corn and microwave them in rice milk. My daughter loves them this way!)

 

DINNER 4:

Indian Fry Bread topped with pinto beans & ground pork sausage, chopped lettuce, black olives, and allergy friendly ranch (My version of these recipes for Navajo tacos)

 

DINNER 5:

Fried shrimp  (use gluten free all-puprose flour mixed with a 1-4 ratio of cornmeal, salt, pepper, and lots of Old Bay

Fried okra

Sliced cucumber, zucchini, and cherry tomatoes mixed with ranch dressing

 

DINNER 6:

Winter Comfort Soup served with brown rice

 

DINNER 7:

Moroccan Lamb (see my link to this recipe and how I slightly modified it here)

Honey roasted carrots (There is a recipe somewhere on Google for these; basically toss baby carrots in honey and bake)

 

DINNER 8:

Spaghetti w/ Elk Veggie Meatballs

Quinoa/corn noodles

 

DINNER 9:

Bacon broccoli stir fry

Fun-shaped quinoa noodles

Sweet potato chips

 

These are dinners that I make for my daughter fairly often. Stir fry meals are super easy. I use the same basics for the bacon broccoli stir fry (rice milk and chicken broth, or sometimes just rice milk and I add about a tablespoon of GF flour at the end to make a thicker sauce), and I change it up with different veggies and different meats, like shrimp, or even crawfish tails.

I do try to make sure that okra, shrimp, salmon, and a gamy meat (elk or lamb) are a regular part of my daughter’s diet. The first three are for calcium and vitamin D, which are not found in very many sources when a child cannot have dairy (I also add lots of spinach during the day, either in a wrap, or in a smoothie).  And the gamy meats have more zinc and iron than your average red meats, which is also important for a child on a limited diet.

 

If this post is helpful for you, please like, share, and comment!

Not Ya Momma’s Chocolate Chip Muffins (Allergy Friendly)

These muffins are so good, you’ll never believe they are actually good for you! Well, maybe not good for you if you’re on a low calorie diet.  But if you need veggies, fat, protein, and other important nutrients in your diet (like a growing child does), WITHOUT having to eat an egregious amount of sugar, these are great! Don’t get me wrong, these do have sugar in them, of course. But it is quite a bit less than most chocolate muffin recipes you’ll find.

And believe it or not, these muffins are also allergy friendly. They are wheat, nut, soy, dairy, coconut, and egg free (as all my recipes are).

Loaded with protein, they make a great addition to breakfast or a great snack.  My daughter LOVES them broken into little pieces topped with apple sauce and fruits.  My husband also decided that even though he has no dietary restrictions, HE would love to have these on a normal basis because he is addicted to chocolate and loves these! So enjoy in whatever way you like, for whatever reason you like. And please let me know if you do!

 

INGREDIENTS:

1 1/2 cups GF all-purpose flour *
1/2 cup garbanzo bean flour
1/2 cup amaranth flour **
2/3 cup unsweetened, cocoa powder (make sure it is DF)
2 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon arrowroot powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped spinach
1/2 cup carrots chopped enough to measure
1 cup of rice milk
1 ripe, mashed banana
1/2 avocado, mashed
1/4 cup avocado oil
1/2 cup raw honey (I use local; which REALLY adds to the flavor because it’s so good!)
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips (check the label for GF, SF, DF, etc.)

NOTES:
*I use a local bulk version, but Bob’s Red Mill has the same GF flour mixture at some stores, it is a mix of garbanzo bean flour, potato starch, tapioca, sorghum, and fava bean flour.

**Amaranth flour has a very “grainy” taste. If you are not used to that, or you’re afraid you’re child will not eat it with that flavor (it is similar to a corn flavor), try either adding more chocolate chips to cover it up, or just replacing that ingredient with the GF mix, which does not have a particular flavor. My daughter doesn’t mind it and my husband and mom say they don’t notice it, so either way is worth a try, but amaranth is a good addition to grains on a limited diet.

 

DIRECTIONS

In a large mixing bowl, add the first 9 ingredients (flour through brown sugar). Mix well with a fork, mashing the brown sugar chunks into the flour.

In a blender cup, add the carrots, spinach, and 1/4-1/2 of the rice milk, and blend until smooth. You can also use a food processor.

In a small mixing bowl, mash and mix the banana and avocado. Add the avocado oil & honey and mix until combined. Now add the vegetable puree, the remaining rice milk, vanilla extract, and apple cider vinegar and mix well. A handheld mixer works well here.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix on low with a handheld mixer until it is smooth and combined. Do not under mix; GF flour needs a little more help to combine with the liquids than wheat does, so mixing enough is important. You should not need to mix for more than 1 minute, however.

Let the batter rest for about 20-30 minutes and preheat your oven to 375 F.

After at least 20 minutes of rest time, whisk the batter just one time. It should look like chocolate mousse, with a fluffy texture to it.

But even though this batter looks super tasty, spare yourself; don’t taste it! Garbanzo bean flour tastes HORRIBLE raw, but once it’s cooked, you would never know it! (I would know, I gave into the temptation here, and let me tell you, it is not pleasant!)

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Pour into a greased muffin pan or muffin cups and bake for 15-18 minutes, depending on your oven. If your oven heats things fast, like mine does, 15 will be perfect, but if it is usually spot on with recipes, you may want to let them cook for 18 minutes.

Remove the muffins from the oven and let them sit in the pan for at least 10 minutes. They may be a little wet on the inside (just enough that a toothpick test won’t work) when you first pull them out. That’s normal with GF baking. It just needs to sit and finish melding together.

 

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Last step, enjoy!  Serve with a side of pork sausage links and fruits for breakfast, a side of sorbet to make a semi-healthy dessert, or just eat by themselves.

To store, wrap in freezer paper and freeze for up to 2 months. To reheat, place in a moist paper towel and microwave for 30 seconds, or until soft.

 

If you enjoy this recipe, please let me know about it!  And check out my other recipes (all allergy free), like, comment, and share with friends. Thanks!

 

Delightfully Sweet Pancakes (Allergy-Friendly)

These pancakes are so sweet, you won’t need syrup! They’re so good, my daughter was running into the kitchen yelling “Pay!! More!!” (she can’t say pancakes yet).  They do have a few sources of “sugar”, including banana, brown sugar, and honey, but not much of each. And with the garbanzo bean flour, they also have protein and magnesium, and the sorghum adds a nutritious grain to a little one’s diet.

I make these for my daughter who cannot have wheat, soy, eggs, dairy, or nuts, so they are allergy friendly.  She eats pancakes with a side of 2 pork link sausages and some fruits. It is a breakfast that I know she will gladly eat!

You will notice that these pancakes are flat, not fluffy. They will not rise very much at all, but that is actually part of what makes them taste so great. Cook them with extra oil to make them crispy and add some fats for your growing kids. They may even be considered crepes by some, but either way, they taste great!

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/8 cup sorghum flour
  • 1 1/8 cup GF all-purpose flour (Garbanzo flour mix works best for me)
  • 3 TBS brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 large, ripe banana*
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 2 teaspoons avocado oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup rice milk
  • 1/4 cup vanilla hemp milk**
  • Avocado oil for cooking

 

DIRECTIONS:

Add dry ingredients (first 6) into a large mixing bowl and mix well. I use a handheld mixer to break up all the brown sugar bits.

Mash the banana in a separate, smaller mixing bowl. Add honey and oil and beat with the handheld mixer, or whisk well by hand. Add the milk and vanilla and mix well.

Add about a TBS and a half of avocado oil in a skillet big enough to cook 4 pancakes at a time (less oil for a smaller skillet, but enough to coat the bottom) and heat on medium-high heat.

Make a well in the middle of the flour and add the wet ingredients in the well. With a handheld mixer, mix just until smooth.

 

Add 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake to the heated skillet. When bubbles form throughout the top, flip and cook until golden brown on both sides.

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Add about 1/2 to 1 TBS for each batch to keep the bottom of the skillet coated.

 

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NOTES:

*I freeze ripe bananas and then microwave them when I am ready to use them. That makes them more sticky as an egg replacer.

** You can just add 1 cup of rice milk if that is what you have. The hemp milk adds a good flavor, but is not essential.

The longer the batter sits out, the more fluffy the pancakes will be, although they will never truly be fluffy with this recipe. If you want thinner, crispier, crepe-like pancakes, cook them right away. If you want them to have more of a pancake-like texture, let the batter rest for at least 20 minutes before cooking.

 

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Meat Lovers Potato Soup

This recipe was the result of an experiment, as usual. I wanted to make potato soup for the whole family, but I just have a hard time sticking to recipes that I find, not to mention, I like a lot of meat in my soups. So, I originally planned to make this potato soup recipe, but I changed it quite a bit.

This soup is actually more of a Cajun version. I was born in Lafayette, LA to a mother who passed down gumbo and other Cajun recipes that are my favorite recipes to cook (I will be adding a gumbo recipe soon).  But my uncle, who was raised in southern LA, made a soup just like this, although I don’t know the name of it. I actually did not realize I was replicating it until my mom told me that it tasted just like his!  So, Cajun potato soup, meat lover’s potato soup; whatever you would like to call it, here is a nice fall/winter soup to enjoy in this cold weather!

A few helpful notes: I did forget to add the onion in the picture, so please don’t leave that out of your ingredients list! It will change the flavor.  Also, if you are making this for the whole family, try adding a little more rice milk for the little ones (you can add it in their bowl). It makes it more “creamy” and a little more sweet. My daughter LOVES it this way; she loves the “juice”!

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 TBS avocado oil
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup GF all-purpose flour (I use a garbanzo flour mix)
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 large carrots, chopped
  • 5 small stalks (or 3 large stalks) of celery, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 5 cloves minced garlic
  • 8 half slices of bacon (4 long slices straight from the package), cooked lightly and cut into small pieces
  • 6 medium/large red potatoes, chopped into small cubes
  • 1 lb ground turkey sausage, cooked and drained
  • 3 cups original, enriched rice milk
  • 1 bunch of green onions, thinly chopped
  • Seasonings:
    • a pinch of saffron
    • 1/2 teaspoon basil
    • 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt
    • 1 teaspoon black pepper
    • 1 teaspoon paprika
    • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

 

DIRECTIONS:

Heat a large skillet over medium high heat for at least 1 minute. Add the avocado oil and heat for another minute.

Meanwhile, mix the flour with 1/2 cup of chicken broth and set aside.

Add the onions, carrots, and celery and 1/2 teaspoon of salt** to the heated skillet. Saute for at least 10 minutes, until the vegetables are softened and the onions translucent.

Now add the minced garlic and bacon pieces and saute for about 3 minutes, until the garlic sends off a nice aroma and the fat begins to seep out of the bacon.

Add the potatoes, turkey sausage, the remaining chicken broth, the rice milk, the chicken broth/flour mixture*, and the seasonings.

Give the soup a good stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook uncovered for about 20 minutes, or until potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally.

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NOTES:

* The original recipe says to add the flour mixture after the potatoes cook. I made this in a hurry and accidentally added it first, but the soup came out really good, so for this recipe you will want to add it with the rest of the chicken broth and let it all cook together.

** There will be a total of at least 1 teaspoon of salt. Some added to the vegetables and some with the seasonings. You can also add more to taste. The sea salt that I use is very flavorful, so I do not need to use as much as I would if I were using regular iodized salt. If you are using regular salt, you will need to add more.

 

Tangy Salmon Tacos

I made this recipe to try and add more calcium and vitamin D to my daughter’s diet in a way that she can enjoy.  It is sweet and refreshing, with a little bit of tang. Fish tacos meet sweet salmon. My daughter enjoys these. And as always, it is gluten, dairy, soy, nut, and egg free.

 

INGREDIENTS

  • For the Salmon Fillets
    • 2 salmon fillets (2-3 oz each)
    • A touch of brown sugar
    • A pinch of sea salt
    • 1 tablespoon of avocado oil
  • For the Tacos
    • 2 white corn tortillas
    • 1/8 cup diced cucumber
    • 1/8 cup finely chopped spinach
  • For the Sauce
    • 2 mandarin orange segments (see picture below for reference)
    • 3-4 mango squares (frozen mangoes), or about 1 1/2 TBS fresh mango
    • 1 teaspoon honey

Other toppings you could add to the tacos include orange cherry tomatoes, shredded, steamed carrots, or cabbage.

 

DIRECTIONS

For the Salmon:

Preheat your oven to 400 F, or use a toaster oven like I did–no preheat necessary.

Rinse the salmon fillet and pat dry.  Rub them down with avocado oil, mostly on the side without the skin. Season with a pinch of sea salt and touch of brown sugar and rub the seasonings into the oil on the fish.

Line an oven safe pan with foil and place the fillets skin-side down on the foil. Bake for 10-15 minutes; until the meat flakes easily with a fork. Ovens vary and thin fillets cook faster than the thicker ones, so check it at about 8 minutes just to be safe.

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For the Sauce:

Heat the mangoes in the microwave for a few seconds, just to thaw if frozen. Chop into very fine pieces and place in a small bowl.

Squeeze as much juice as you can with your hands from the mandarin segments into the bowl with the mangoes. Discard the flesh.

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Add the honey and stir until the honey thins out and mixes with the rest of the sauce.

 

For the tacos:

Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Once hot, add one tortilla at a time and cook for about 30 seconds up to 1 minute on each side.

Place a very small amount of the sauce on the tortilla, top with salmon, a little more sauce, then cucumbers, spinach, and another small layer of sauce. Enjoy.

Note: Some corn tortillas will tear very easily, so you will want to find the kind that do not. I use Don Ponchos.

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