Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanksgiving prep and other shortcuts

How is everyone? Totally stressed out yet? Sometimes going gluten-free on Thanksgiving involves a little more work, but aren't you and your family worth it?

One thing that helps me, is to prepare the side dishes the day before.
Now I realize, there is no way to make those fluffy mashed potatoes early.(I suppose you could freeze them.) This year, I prepped my green bean casserole, candied sweet potatoes, and stuffing early.

Another tip I use, to save time, is when I prep my dishes, I cover them with foil. To finish, I take a sharpie and mark the item, the degree, and time, that the dish takes to cook. It saves a ton of time, and no searching through that cookbook to find the information you need.

My third tip is, if you are able, order ready made desserts.
If you are lucky enough to live near a dedicated gluten free bakery, or
if you can online order, many companies now ship GF pies. This year I skipped the mess, and the high cost of pecans(9$ a pound) and ordered my pie from Charolette's Bakery in Salt Lake City. True, it costs about 3 times the price of a regular pie, but it's worth it to me.

Hopefully these tips will help take some of the stress out of your
Turkey Day. Everyone have a great gluten-free holiday!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Southern Cornbread Dressing

Okay, is you are not from the South, you probably have no idea what I am talking about, but believe me, you are missing one of the great dishes of Southern Cuisine.

Thanksgiving is upon us, and instead of wasting your loaf of $6 GF bread on stuffing for your turkey, try this recipe instead. Although this is a two-part process, it is well worth the effort.

First: Prepare the Classic Cornbread recipe( I often do this the night before)

Classic Cornbread Recipe


1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan
1 1/2 cups yellow or white cornmeal
1 cup GF flour mix (spooned and leveled)
6 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon fine salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup buttermilk
3 large eggs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Butter an 8-inch square baking pan. In a large bowl, stir together cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. In a medium bowl, whisk together melted butter, buttermilk, and eggs. Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture and stir just until combined (do not overmix). Transfer batter to pan and smooth top.
Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes.

Once the cornbread has cooled enought to handle, take a large bowl and crumble the cornbread into it.

Cornbread Dressing

2TBSP Butter
2 medium onions, chopped
3 stalks of celery, sliced
1/2 lbs of white mushrooms, sliced
1/2 tsp salt
fresh black pepper to taste
1 14.5 GF chicken broth(like Swansons)
1/2 tsp sage
1/4 tsp thyme

Heat heavy pot on stovetop, and add 2 TBSP butter to melt. Add diced onions and sliced celery, and cook until onions become transparent. Add mushrooms, and saute until slightly softened. Add salt and pepper, sage and thyme. Transfer the hot vegetable mixture to the bowl with the crubled corn bread. Mix, then add chicken stock to moisten. Turn into a 9x13 greased casserole dish, and bake at 350 degrees, for approximatley 30 minutes, or until crisp around edges. Serve with turkey or ham.