Brown Rice Risotto (Wild Mushroom version)

Risotto is a favorite rice dish at my house. I generally use arborio rice, short fat white grains. It takes about 18-20 minutes to cook on the stovetop. Someone got me a bag of short grained brown rice. Saturday I tried it out for risotto. And, as it takes longer than white rice, I made it in my Instant Pot pressure cooker; easier, faster and less heat in my kitchen. It was pretty tasty. And super healthy as brown rice is a whole grain. This was a wild mushroom risotto made with chicken of the woods shrooms which I had harvested last fall and frozen partially precooked. Delicious! Baby bella or cremini mushrooms would work well; slice and sauté before adding to the recipe. Or sub in a cup of frozen peas or barely cooked chopped asparagus.

wild mushroom risotto

Yes, those mushrooms are pink! This is a dish of leftover risotto; not as creamy as first cooked was.

Wild Mushroom Brown Rice Risotto

 

Ingredients:

1 cup brown short grain rice

1 Tbsp. olive oil

½ c diced onion

1 garlic clove minced

1/3 c dry white wine

1 2/3 cups chicken broth

1 tsp sea salt

1 cup cooked wild mushrooms; 1 ½ c sliced mushrooms cooked in 2 Tbsp butter 3-6 minutes

1/3-1/2 cup just grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

Put IP on sauté feature, let heat then add olive oil. Add finely diced onion, cook 4-5 minutes, stir often. Add rice, stir and cook a minute, add wine, cook a minute, add garlic, stir and cook 30 seconds. Add broth and salt. Put on lid, lock and put on pressure for 35 minutes. While it cooks sauté the shrooms. At end of 35 minutes do a quick release, open, stir and add the mushrooms, stir and add cheese, grind on black pepper.  Stir and serve. Enjoy!

Note, if watery you can put on sauté for 3-5 minutes to dry it out some. Or, if dry add up to a quarter cup more broth.

risotto and firey salmon

Summer supper perfection: dilly cuke salad, corn on cob and firecracker salmon fillets with the risotto.

Crab Cake Feast!

Crab is my weakness, I love to pick out steamed Maryland blue crabs, love lump crab sautéed with shrimp and adore crab soup. Today I bring you a classic: the deluxe crabcake!  We were on vacation in the Finger Lakes and as our bungalow had a full kitchen and gluten free seemed to be scarce, we made all our breakfasts and suppers. I got this big one lb. can of lump crab meat on sale at Valley Farm Market. Add some homemade gf bread crumbs (leftover French bread), eggs and a touch of seasoning; then wait patiently as the cakes brown and you will be rewarded with a big luscious crab cake. I skipped Worcestershire Sauce and Old Bay Seasoning but they are certainly traditional additions.

Chilling the crab mixture is critical to a good crab cake. It truly is vital.

We had crabcake sandwiches a day later for a delish quick picnic lunch under a tree at Niagara Falls. Schar’s gf ciabatta rolls were perfection after I smeared a dab of mayo mixed with Dijon mustard and a leaf of homegrown lettuce. A baggie of cold grapes completed our rapid yet relaxed repast.

crab cakes

Big and juicy crammed full. of lump crab meat! No preparation pictures: on vacation!

Angie’s Crab Cakes

Ingredients:

1 lb. lump crab meat

2/3 cup gf bread crumbs

2 eggs

2-3 Tbsp. light mayonnaise

1 ½ tsp. best quality Dijon mustard

½ tsp. sea salt and ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1-2 Tbsp finely chopped red pepper (optional)

2-3 Tbsp finely chopped onion or green onion

1-2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley

 

Directions: Pick over crab meat for shells. Beat eggs in large bowl with a whisk until broken up.  Add mayo, mustard, salt, black pepper, garlic, chopped pepper, parsley, and onion, Stir, add crab and crumbs, stir gently.  Chill in fridge 30-60 minutes. Form into 5-6 large cakes. We did five big cakes! Add more crumbs if necessary.  Place on a large plate, cover tightly and chill 30-60 minutes. Heat a 50-50 mixture of butter and mild olive oil or canola; enough to well coat a cast iron fry pan and slide the cakes gently in. Maybe 5 minutes a side; until golden brown.

Some serve with tarter sauce. We had ours with rice pilaf, corn on the cob and homegrown snap peas. Enjoy!

Finger Lakes Trip

Six days ago, I fell in my yard and fractured my right wrist. Casted the next day. Cannot garden cannot lift much of anything. Typing one handed for next 6 weeks. There won’t be any long posts….

Last week we were up in the Finger Lakes. I cooked a lot, full kitchen in our bungalow. I made blueberry pancakes and cinnamon waffles. Suppers included crab cakes, grilled lamb chops and grilled Delmonico steaks.

I made a blueberry rhubarb crisp which I loved. Joe was hoping for a cobbler though…  And the smoked trout appetizer was delish: gf crackers, homemade cream cheese, capers and fresh dill. Mmmm.  smoked troutWe ate great meals for 3.5 days for under $100. Luxury proteins and fresh veggies including homegrown peas, romaine and broccoli. Delish! I will post my crab cake recipe another day. Need to rest now.

Blueberry Rhubarb Crisp: BLUEBERRILISHOUS!

It’s definitely rhubarb season, at least at my garden here in Pennsylvania! This recipe is a 3.0 take on my other crisps; it is super easy to put together and the blueberry fruity  flavor is super yummy.

It keeps about 2-3 days depending on humidity. I have a glass baking dish with a plastic lid for keeping things fresh; works great.

Notes; any gf flour blend will do, I use King Arthur blend. I used a bunch of chunky walnuts.  I think the walnuts add a nice crunch to the result. But great with no nuts too…  I think it  would work fine with frozen blueberries.  This is smaller version of my  fruit crisp recipe; when you don’t have a lot of fruit or want less leftover.  You can make the other recipe and just use a mixture of the two fruits; tad more rhubarb in it but it really has a strong blueberry flavor. Delish!

blueberries and rhubarb

blueberries, rhubarb and tap starch

The fruit is mixed with the dry blend of sugar and tapioca flour plus a touch of cinnamon.

Blueberry Rhubarb Crisp

Ingredients

Fruit layer

1 pint fresh blueberries washed

2 cups rhubarb cut into ½ inch bits

1/2 cup sugar

2 Tbsp.  tapioca starch (or cornstarch if you chose)

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

Topping

1/4 cup gf flour blend

1/2 cup gf oats (not quick ones!)

2 Tbsp. unpacked brown sugar

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

2 Tbsp. butter, cold

1/3 cup walnuts (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray inside of 8×8 glass baking dish; any dish roughly that size will do. In a large mixing bowl dump all the dry ingredients; sugar, starch and cinnamon. Mix a bit; add rhubarb and blueberries, mix well. Dump into baking dish.

Dump all dry ingredients left except nuts into bowl of mixer, blend briefly. Add butter which you have cut up into about 12 or more tiny bits; a few cuts with a knife do it quick. Blend a minute or so until you can’t see the butter. Add nuts. Pour over the fruit. Bake on middle shelf for 28 to 32 minutes; the thicker the layer of fruit is the longer it takes; you want it bubbling and the top lightly browned. Let cool at least 15 or 20 minutes.  Great with vanilla ice cream or plain Greek yogurt on top. Or go decadent by pouring a bit of heavy cream into the bowl with your crisp; AMAZING!  Store with a tight lid on top. Enjoy!

blueberry rhubarb crisp in dish

This was the second day dessert in an old chipped bowl! I forgot to take a picture when we had it on Sunday; just so eager to enjoy this treat!

Steak Fajitas Done Easy!

Okay, so I’ve been wanting to make gluten free flat bread, aka flour tortillas for a long long time; just been a bit exhausted and too busy for the effort of trying new recipes. Well, I think I found a keeper; found on healthystartsinthekitchen.com. You make it in a lidded quart mason jar; dump ingredients in, shake up the batter really well and pour a quarter cup into a cast iron fry pan or griddle; tilt to spread it a bit, bake on both sides 1-2 minutes and then pop in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes to finish the center. flat bread

Great as a wrap for my steak fajitas. I had some leftover flank steak cooked on the grill. It was a bit tough and kinda boring but sliced thin and briefly warmed on the hot griddle after the flat breads were done; just right. I laid a few slices across a flatbread, topped with finely shredded fresh cabbage, a few thin sliced rounds of cucumber and a bit of sliced ripe avocado. Topped it with a 50/50 mixture of mayo and unflavored yogurt. A great steak fajita is ready to gobble up with very little effort.

 

steak fajita 4The recipe is available on her site: 1/2 cup almond flour, 1/2 cup tapioca flour, some water, onion and garlic powder, sea salt and pepper. Says it makes four but I got 3 medium sized ones. Next time I will double it. They were tasty warm from oven. A very simple to construct (few ingredients and just easy) and extremely useful recipe. Give it a try next time you need a gf flour tortilla. You may be very pleased and it is a fraction the cost of those tough, dry and bland gf wraps you can buy…if you can even find any at your store.  I also like that it takes no weird flours or tricky processes to create these crispy treats. Enjoy!

Chocolate Pavlova with Berries

In search of a new version of pavlova…came across chocolate pavlova and decided to give it a whirl; several recipes out there; this is a riff off of a recipe by Nigella Lawson; translated from grams for most part.  I also topped with strawberries; she used raspberries. I am sure both are great options. Use the fruit you have. It was impressive looking and delicious!

choc pavlova minus choco

 

 

meringue whippingchoco being added

Chocolate Pavlova with Strawberries; serves 8

Ingredients:

6 large egg whites

Pinch sea salt

½ tsp. cream of tartar

1 ¼ cup sugar

3 Tbsp. cocoa powder sieved

1.5 tsp. red wine vinegar

50 grams dark chocolate chopped; I used 1 1/3  of two 40 oz bars of Aldi’s dark chocolate

Topping

1 ½ cup heavy cream

2-3 Tbsp. sugar

1 quart box of ripe strawberries sliced and mixed with 1-2 Tbsp. sugar (optional but if they aren’t dead ripe it is a good idea)

Directions:

Prep: Line a heavy baking sheet with parchment paper. Draw a 9 inch circle and flip paper. Chop chocolate with heavy knife, sieve cocoa, separate eggs. Slice strawberries and mix with sugar (if eating same day as making meringue)

Meringue: Heat oven to 360 degrees. Beat the egg whites with salt and tartar until stiff and then add in sugar in slow steady stream. Turn mixer to high and beat until glossy. Several minutes. Add in vinegar, chocolate and cocoa. Fold well. Spoon out onto the parchment paper; try to keep in the circle. Smooth top a bit. Bake in oven center shelf; turn heat down to 300 degrees. Warning: it will get bigger so don’t make it too wide. Bake 55-60 minutes until it looks baked; can be slightly squishy inside.  Cool in oven with door cracked open for about 30 minutes.  Can store a day. I put mine in the microwave to avoid humidity.

choco pavlova with choco

Serve: Beat cream (I like to chill my beaters and the bowl), add sugar; it should be fairly stiff. Pour out on the meringue and top with the strawberries. Can put slivers or curls of dark chocolate on top. Slice and serve. Enjoy!

I have to say it tasted great leftover the next evening.

 

 

chocolate pavlova slice

My slice…yeap; on a paper plate. We were in a senior living room with a tiny sink; paper plates are essential! It tasted even better than it looks here.

Aldi’s New Fresh Pasta: Perfection!

Recently I bought some of the new Aldi’s products including fresh fettuccine. I paired it with a cremini mushroom and tomato sauce and it was just perfection. The taste and texture of the pasta was spot on and I can’t wait to use the package of linguine I also purchased. The price was about $3.45 for 8 ounces. Not a bad price for fresh pasta. It has a use by date several weeks away so I am sure I will be able to enjoy it almost as fresh as if I made it myself. Don’t have time for that right now so I am super pleased with this great addition to the Aldi gluten free line. It is everything you could want in a gf fresh pasta.

This is a riff on a mushroom sauce I often make; just more simple.

mushroom linguini

Angie’s Mushroom Red Sauce with Fettuccini (3-4 servings)

 

1 8 oz package of cremini mushrooms

2-3 Tbsp. EVOL

1 medium onion diced (optional)

1 large garlic clove

1 14.5 oz can petite cut tomatoes

2-3 Tbsp heavy cream or half and half

1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

8 oz fresh fettuccine

1 Tbsp fresh parsley or basil

 

Directions: Slice the mushrooms which you have cleaned; I washed mine briefly to get all the dirt and dust off. My slices were thick and meaty. Heat the EVOL in a wide saucepan. I used my mini wok. When it is fairly hot add the onion and mushrooms. Cook over medium heat 3-5 minutes until both are soft and mushrooms look fairly cooked. Add the garlic clove, minced. Stir. Add the can of tomatoes, stir well. Turn down heat and cook 10 minutes. Add cream, stir. Sprinkle with finely chopped parsley and then add the pasta which you have cooked according to the directions (Do not overcook pasta; always best to subtract one minute from directions to allow for a minute in sauce.) Stir well and cook one minute; top with grated cheese. Enjoy!