Sweet Corn and Lobster Chowdah

Sweet corn is one of my favorite summer treats.  So is lobster. Why not combine them in a delightful light summer fish chowder? So I did.  This is as good a chowder as any I had when I was living in Massachusetts or visiting New England.

You can vary the fish/shell fish as you wish, ditto for the veggies. Or cut back on the veggies if you are a hater of produce! This is my basic recipe, change as needed to make it less rich, richer or even dairy free. Just don’t overcook it or boil the chowder once the half and half is added.  I used yellow straight squash; love the color but green zucchini will work just as well.

I promise you that chowder lovers will be crazy for this fish soup!

lobster chowder

Sweet Corn and Lobster Chowder  six servings

Ingredients:

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 cup chopped onion; one large

2 cloves garlic, minced

3 cups fish broth or chicken if that is what you have

1 pound of Yukon gold or small red potatoes, diced

½ to 3/4 cup of summer squash diced

1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped red pepper

1 carrot diced

One large ear of sweet corn (could add another ear if you adore corn)

1 lobster tail (thawed)

¼ lb bay scallops

1/3 lb cod, dice into large chunks

6-8 large shrimp, shelled

1 tbsp shredded fresh basil

1-2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves

1 tsp fresh oregano leaves

½ tsp sea salt

¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

½ cup half and half (cream if you want it rich or milk for less rich)

1-2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

Directions:

Heat the oil in a two quart sauce pan, add onion, cook 3-4 minutes, stirring, don’t let brown.  Then add garlic and cook another minute.  Add the broth.  When it is hot again add the potatoes.  Meanwhile, while broth heats cut the sweet corn off the cob, put the cob in the broth as it will release a lot of flavor.  Set the kernels aside to add later. Add the lobster tail to the hot mixture; let it cook about 6-7 minutes, remove and let cool a few minutes, snip open the underside and remove the meat, dice and set aside: will add back when potatoes are done.  Add the summer squash, red pepper and carrot, cook until all the veggies are nearly done, no more than 15 minutes.  Remove the corn cob. Add the cod, the scallops and the shrimp.  Let cook about five minutes.  Add the half and half and return to medium heat.  Do not boil.  If the soup is too thick add more half and half or more broth. Add the sweet corn kernels, the cooked lobster meat, salt, pepper and the fresh herbs. You could sub in snipped up rosemary for the oregano if  you like.  As soon as it is hot; sprinkle with parsley and serve.

Great with fresh gf French bread or rolls and a green salad.

The inspiration for my recipe is the potato, corn and monkfish soup in Jane Brody’s Good Seafood Book. A number of changes have been made.  Great cookbook for seafood lovers.

 

Musikfest 2016 – Gluten Free Eating

Just a quick Musikfest gluten free update for my peeps.  I have enjoyed just a few food items there: not volunteering as much this year so not around the place to test more things.

I had the corn on the cob from Aww…Shucks.  It was great as always; I had them leave off the seasonings as they are not gluten free. corn on cob

The other choice I had as a meal was from Hogar Crea: their chicken and beans and rice.  It was pretty awesome.  My plate was piled high with everything including some big chunks of yams; great seasoning and very filling.  My pocketbook was happy: good deal for this pricy issue of eating at the Musikfest; only 8 tickets which is cheap if you look at how much other entrees cost there!

Hogar crea

Looks like some yummy shish kebab grilling here at Hogar Crea’s stand at Handworkplatz.

The only  drink I had there was the half and half lemonade and ice tea incredibly thirst quenching on a hot day as I sold beer mugs! ice tea and lemonade

 

Musikfest has only have one cider this year; Gumption: I saw it at Festplatz at the small specialty truck next to the beer tent.  It is a fairly sweet apple cider but better than nothing if you want an alcoholic treat but can’t drink wheat beer and don’t like to drink wine. hard cider

 

Not sure what else is celiac safe there; in past three summers I ate bbq pork over at Volksplatz at that big polish food stand.  Pulled pork poured over a big baked potato.  Amazing! GF delight. So there are a few options out there.  Let me know if you find something else safe for we celiacs.

 

Banana Blueberry Muffins

The other day I was thinking of making banana nut muffins…short one banana.  So I added blueberries to make enough fruit.  An instant classic!

I know, they look just like a banana muffin but they have a secret inside, juicy flavorful blueberries! The streusel topping looks gorgeous and adds an extra layer of flavor.  There are walnuts in them to so you get some really great nutrients from the fruit and nuts.  You can swap the white sugar for coconut palm sugar which is very low as far as raising blood sugar; important if you are pre-diabetic as I am.   I did add an extra tbsp. of milk because of the coconut palm sugar. They come out slightly darker if you use that special sugar.  banana blueberry muffin 002

I love how healthy these muffins are and the convenience of freezing most of them for use as daily snacks.  They defrost during the morning and are ready just when I need a pick me up. It’s great how being gluten free can be so yummy and easy when you plan ahead and bake your own snack treats. I freeze all muffins I won’t eat in two days time; a zip lock freezer bag works great.

Banana Blueberry Streusel Muffins

2 cups brown rice flour mix (see below)

2/3 cup granulated coconut palm sugar or granulated sugar

1 tbsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

¾ tsp. xanthan gum

¼ tsp. salt

1/2 tsp cinnamon

¾ cup mashed bananas

1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

1/3 cup chopped walnuts

2 large eggs

½ cup milk, 1 or 2 percent plus 1-2 tbsp more if using the palm sugar

½ cup canola oil

Topping: Mix the following in a bowl, make sure the butter is in tiny pebbles; use your fingertips to blend.

½ cup rolled oats

¼ cup brown sugar

2 tbsp. almond meal

1½ tbsp. butter

¼ tsp. cinnamon

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Directions: Heat your oven to 350 degrees, placing the rack in middle of oven.  Spray muffin pans with cooking spray.  One batch makes 14-16 muffins.  I got 16 when I made them.

Mix all dry ingredients in bowl of stand mixer or big bowl. Add fruits and walnuts; stir to coat them with dry mix.  Combine milk and oil.  Add liquids and eggs to big bowl; stir just until fully blended.  It is a very thick batter.  I like to let it stand ten minutes to allow the batter to thicken; makes a better and higher muffin.

Fill muffin pans 2/3 full.  I use a big serving spoon and fill it about half way to dump batter into each muffin space. Sprinkle the top with the topping. Press it in a bit so it won’t all flake off after baking. Bake 21-23 min until golden brown. Do not over bake or they will taste dry.  Let stand 6 or 7 minute and then remove from the pans and cool on a rack. I often use a fork to help pry them out; the streusel can get stuck on the edges to the muffin tin.  They freeze well for a few weeks, if they last that long.  Keeps in fridge (well wrapped) or an airtight cookie jar for 2-3 days.

Brown Rice Flour Mix base mix 

(This mix is the same as King Arthur’s gf blend)
2 c brown rice flour

2/3 c potato starch

1/3 c tapioca flour

Swiss Chard Tacos

Meatless meals don’t thrill me like those made with serious proteins, favorites like salmon, poultry, lamb or pork.  That said, I have a few delightful vegetarian items I make on occasion.  Time to add another to my roster; these swiss chard tacos. My sister made these while I was up visiting her.  I was skeptical but found them to be really delicious and a great way to use up a lot of the swiss chard growing profusely in my August gardens!  No meat but you won’t miss it in these flavorful and filling tacos.

I used Mexican cheese but you can also use Monterey Jack as that is what the original recipe called for.  The recipe is out of a recent Home and Garden magazine. I made a few changes….added some ground cumin for extra spice. Don’t forget the red wine vinegar, really a great finishing touch.

The white corn tortillas (La Bandarita brand) came from Wegmans; they have one up near Boston.  There are three here near me. Enjoy!

chard taco

Sorry for the messy picture. I guess I should make a prettier taco!

Karen’s Swiss Chard Tacos

1 lb Swiss chard

½ tsp. cumin seeds

¼ tsp. ground cumin

½ a red onion, chopped

1 red pepper, chopped

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 clove garlic minced

1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar

1 can of black beans, rinsed and well drained

8 tortillas; corn flour

1 cup of Monterey jack cheese or Queso Fresca cheese; grated

1/3 cup sour cream, reduced fat is my preference

cilantro for garnish if desired

Directions:

Chop up the chard stems into half inch dice.  Rough chop the rest of the chard and set aside. Heat a large frying pan and add the cumin seeds; cook 1-2 minutes until fragrant.  Add olive oil then chard stems.  Cook 3 minutes until softening.  Add the chard leaves that you have rough chopped, ground cumin, onion, garlic and red pepper.  Cook 3 min, stirring.  Add the red wine vinegar and the black beans.  Stir well, cook 3-4 minutes longer. The greens should be wilted but they don’t need to be fully cooked down.

Meanwhile while the filling cooks; heat oven to 350 degrees.  Lay tortillas out on baking sheets.  Sprinkle grated cheese in the center of each.  Bake 4-5 minutes until cheese starts melting and tortilla is somewhat crisp. Remove from oven.  Place a generous amount of chard mixture on each tortilla.  Top with a spoonful of sour cream.  Sprinkle cilantro over top if desired.  I am not a fan but you might be…

Blueberry Crumb Pie – Delish!

Somehow I haven’t ever shared my recipe for blueberry pie. I went to repost it and found no post!  And as it is blueberry season and I just made a gorgeous blueberry pie this weekend I was feeling the need to share. Plus 2016 is my year of pie and I feel that compulsion to give you another fantastic pie recipe.

This is really easy to create.  Slice and dump together the filling, crumb topping gets quickly made by dumping ingredients in the mixer bowl you used for the bottom crust. You can store any leftover crumb mixture in a sealed container in the fridge; it keeps a few weeks.  This GF crumb topping is perfect for most any fruit pie.

Bake and enjoy summer in a pie in just a few minutes of work.  Don’t eat it piping hot; it should be cooled to room temperature.  You could certainly serve this with vanilla ice cream or any other vanilla topping.

Angie’s GF Blueberry Crumb Pie

Crust:

1 c plus 2 tbsp brown rice flour mix (at bottom of recipe)

2 tbsp sweet rice flour

1 Tbps. granulated sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

¼ tsp salt

6 Tbps. cold butter cut into 6 chunks

1 lg egg

2 tsp fresh orange or lemon juice

Spray 9 inch metal pie pan with cooking spray, dust with white rice flour.

Mix dry ingredients in bowl of stand electric mixer.  Add butter and mix until crumbly and resembling coarse meal.  Add egg and juice.  Mix until it comes together into big chunks.  Shape into a ball with your hands. Put it on a crust sized piece of wax paper (14 x 14 inches more or less), flatten the crust ball some; put on top of it another piece of wax paper and chill it all in your fridge 15-20 minutes while you prepare the filling.

Filling:

5 cups fresh blueberries – place in medium bowl

Mix with: ½ cup sugar

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

3 tbsp. quick tapioca

Add and stir in

2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

Let stand while you prepare the crust.

Roll out pie crust in a pie bag or between the two sheets of wax paper, try to get the thickness even, no thick middle! Peel off one side of paper and place in pie pan, centered.  Remove other slice of wax paper.  Crimp edges all around.  Fill with fruit mixture.

Crumb topping

Put all four ingredients in the same mixing bowl you made the bottom crust in and mix well with mixer paddle until crumbs form.

¾ c brown rice flour mix

½ c sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

1/3 c cold butter cut into six chunks

Sprinkle the top of the pie with crumb mix; use as much as you like.  I like about three quarters of the mixture.  Up to your personal taste… It sinks partially into the fruit mixture and adds lots of sweetness and eye appeal.

Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 50 or so minutes until the blueberries are bubbly and the crumb crust is light brown.  I put a piece of aluminum foil on top for the last ten minutes if the crumbs are getting too browned.  Cool at least 2 to 4 hours before serving at room temperature.  I think it is best served the same day you make it, or no more then 12 hours after baking for optimal flavor.  The crumbs will get soggy if too much time passes.

Note: if you find your bottom crust is not browning enough bake it empty at 375 degrees for ten minutes before filling it with the fruit.  I am lucky to have a bottom heat pizza style oven which gives me perfect pie crust so I don’t ever have pale pie crust.

Brown Rice Flour Mix (same as King Arthur basic gf blend)

2 c brown rice flour

2/3 c potato starch – not potato flour!

1/3 c tapioca flour

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The crust and crumb recipes are from Annalise Roberts great cookbook, GF Baking Classics, Second Edition.