Cauliflower Potato Salad

This low carb salad will satisfy almost anyone’s desire for potato salad!

Cauliflower stands in for carb-heavy potatoes but all of the other ingredients are the same as a traditional potato salad.

My dressing might be lighter than others that you are used to but it has plenty of flavor to cover up any stray cauliflower taste!You can make this salad up ahead of time just like a regular potato salad.This is a beautiful salad when garnished with sliced hard boiled eggs, olives and parsley.This is the traditional rendition of this salad but I already have ideas to take it lots of different directions.   It’s great because it is so healthy and good for you!

Lemon Curd Thumbprint Heart Cookies

These cookies are gorgeous and taste amazing!  Nobody would ever guess that they are gluten free!  If you don’t have issues with gluten, you can just substitute “regular” flour for the GF Flour Mix.

The cookie base is the same one that I used for my Pecan Pie Cookies.  I just took the shape a step further after I portioned the dough into walnut sized balls.  I used a medium sized heart shaped cookie cutter that is 2 and 1/4 inches wide and pressed the cookie dough into a heart shape on top of a parchment lined cookie sheet.  You don’t want the dough to be too thick, just thick enough so that you can use either your thumb or a plastic capsule style cork from a bottle of wine to make several indentations in the top of the cookie.  You are not going to end up with a very deep area like you do with a regular ball-shaped thumbprint cookie but it gives you a little extra space to hold more of the lemon curd topping!

If I didn’t know the recipe, I would say that these cookies have cornstarch in them, but they don’t.  They crumble in your mouth (in a good way) like some of the Meltaway cookie recipes that are on the boxes of cornstarch.  I didn’t notice that texture when I made the Pecan Pie cookies, but maybe it is because these are thinner in the heart shape.  Whatever the reason is, I’m glad!

The pink topping is raspberry curd.  It tastes amazing but I need to make it one more time before I post it next week.

The recipe for the thumbprint base cookie made 27 in the heart shape.  They all fit on two baking sheets because they do not really spread out at all.

You can come up with your own method of making the “thumbprint” indentation in the cookie dough.  I used the capsule cork and pressed down in 3 places in the center of the cookie.  There is probably a better way to do it that would result in a better indentation- you could use anything that is rounded on the end.

Chicken Cacciatore

I hadn’t made this recipe in years and then when I thought about it, I couldn’t find my original recipe!  I remembered the ingredients though, so I was able to recreate it and it tastes perfect.

It is a super healthy entree to serve because it is full of vegetables and chicken.

My Mom used to make this  Chicken Cacciatore and I realized when I was looking at some other recipes for the same dish- she had a couple of different ingredients in hers that I think really make it exceptional.  I didn’t see any other recipes that had peperoncini peppers and I don’t think any had black olives either.

The peperoncinis (there are only 8 in the recipe) add a little bit of brightness and interest and the olives contribute some nice flavor too.

I used Mezzetta brand peperoncinis- they had just the right amount of heat in them and it dissipated nicely throughout the Cacciatore.

The other vegies that are in the Cacciatore are onions, garlic, mushrooms, tomatoes and roasted red bell pepper.

I used whole chicken thighs that I had removed most of the fat from.  I left the bones and the skin for flavor and then removed the skin when the Cacciatore was done cooking.  For ease of serving and eating, you might want to remove the meat from the bones when it is done cooking and discard the bones.  It will be easier to eat that way.

When I first made the Cacciatore this time I wasn’t sure if it was right to have roasted red bell pepper in it, so I left it out until I tasted it and something was not quite right.  I added the bell pepper and that is what was missing- yay!

Clam Chowder

This chowder recipe has all of the flavors of a good Boston or New England style clam chowder.  It is more brothy, rather than being heavy and thick with cream and flour

I didn’t want to compromise the flavor, so this recipe is not dairy free.  I used only a tablespoon of butter and one half cup total of 1/2 and 1/2.  I also used rice milk so I was able to keep the amount of 1/2 and 1/2 down

I used canned whole baby clams and was very pleased with how tender they were in the chowder.  Be sure to wait until the end to add the clams or they could get rubbery in texture.

All and all, I think this is a very healthy and flavorful version of many people’s favorite soup

Chocolate Sambuca Cookies

These Chocolate Sambuca Cookies are a new recipe that I just converted to gluten free.  The original recipe was published in Gourmet magazine in January 1995.  I could not find it on the Epicurious website to link to though.  A reader of Gourmet had written in to request the recipe for this cookie which was served at a Boston restaurant called Mirabelle.

This cookie tastes great and looks beautiful too.  It would be a great addition to any mixed cookie plate.  The Sambuca flavor is not too strong because there is only 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of it in the recipe.

I am so happy with this recipe that I am going to try to make it with other kinds of liquors- everything tastes good with chocolate, right?

I’m thinking about Frangelico, Agavero (made from Tequila), Kahlua, etc.

I am even wondering about using Port wine- sounds good to me!

Update on using other liquors:

I tried all 4 ideas that I mentioned in the last paragraph (I split 2 batches of dough into 2).  Everything ended up tasting too sweet- the Sambuca really is the best choice so far.  I do want to try another Mexican coffee liquor that we have that is called XO Cafe- it is made by Patron tequila and has tequila in it.  It is not as sweet as Kahlua and it has a more intense coffee flavor.

I also want to come up with a version that is rolled in coconut- I am thinking about using dark rum as the liquor for that one

Raspberry Curd

The flavor is fresh and intense and very raspberry.  I used a 12 oz bag of frozen organic raspberries from Trader Joes.  I think the bag was $3.69, so it was a good deal and the berries had been picked when they were perfectly ripe.

My original intent was to use the Raspberry Curd to top some chocolate cookies that I made in heart shapes.  In my opinion (and my neighbor’s as well), the chocolate dominated the raspberry flavor, so the raspberry was overshadowed.  I think the better use for this yummy curd would be on my Heart Shaped Thumbprint Cookies that are pictured above.  The Raspberry Curd also would be perfect to use as a filling between cake layers, on toast, or whatever else that you can think of!  It’s great!

I always strain the hot mixture with a larger strainer, just in case there are any bits of cooked egg.  That’s it, you’re done and the curd just needs to chill a few hours to thicken a little more and set up.  It will not end up as thick as lemon curd does,  because there is not as much sugar or eggs.

If your raspberries do not have as much good color as these did, you might want to add a little bit of red food coloring- some batches can end up a little bit on the browny-mauve shade of pink.

Drawing For A $50 Gift Certificate From Andreas Jewelry!

I haven’t counted but there are a couple hundred pieces of jewelry to choose from in the $50 and under price range!

Free shipping is included within the USA.

My jewelry features semi-precious stones combined with hand made beads and pendants created by artists from all over the USA.

All of my jewelry is made with 100% Sterling Silver beads, earwires and clasps.

This drawing is open to anyone who is a subscriber of this blog.

To enter, simply subscribe to Andreas Kitchen and then leave a comment at the bottom of this post saying that you are a subscriber and would like to enter the drawing.

I will choose a random winner on August 25, 2010.

That date is my birthday, but I’m giving this present to one of my subscribers!

The winner will be announced on this blog and Twitter immediately after being chosen.

Good luck!

Zucchini Lasagna

My Mom used to make Zucchini Lasagna when I was a kid.  I always loved the flavors and now I love it because it is gluten free!

Three layers of zucchini slices take the place of traditional lasagna noodles.

I reworked Mom’s meat sauce a little bit and added a lot more mushrooms and some grated carrot to balance out the acid from the canned tomatoes.

Mom’s recipe also had a layer of cheese in it- I took that out and don’t miss it a bit.  I sprinkle a little bit of grated reggiano on the top right before I bake it.

This is a great recipe to make when you have an abundance of zucchini.

The blue ceramic dish that I bake this in is 9″x12″ and is 3 inches deep.  If your dish is not as deep you will probably only be able to use 2 layers of zucchini.  You could always make 2 smaller pans and give one away to a friend!  I gave some to our neighbors and they loved it and also appreciated not having to cook that night.

This time when I made it,  I lightly sauteed the zucchini slices with some onion, garlic, basil and oregano before I added them to the lasagna.  I think it gave them a lot more flavor and I will continue doing it in the future.  If you are in a hurry, you can skip this step and the lasagna will still be yummy.

I only cooked this lasagna for 30 minutes because we don’t like the zucchini to get too soft.  Some people might prefer it to be done a little more.  If you are making this with only 2 layers of zucchini you will want to test it with a fork at about 20-25 minutes.

Leftover  lasagna is great reheated for several days after you make it.  You can heat a slice in the microwave, or do what I do and heat it in a frying pan.  It doesn’t stay together in the layers but I don’t like using my microwave for vegies because scientists say it takes the nutrition out in the cooking process.

I shared the link to this recipe at the Hearth and Soul Hop on A Moderate Life, Homemaker Monday at 11th Heaven’s Homemaking Haven, Finer Things Friday at The Finer Things In Life, This Weeks Cravings at From My Tiny Kitchen, Tasty Tuesdays at 33 Shades Of Green, Gluten Free Wednesdays at The Gluten Free Homemaker, Real Food Wednesday at Kelly The Kitchen Kop, Full Plate Thursdays at Miz Helen’s Country Cottage, Frugal Food Thursday at Frugal Follies, This Weeks Cravings at Mom’s Crazy Cooking

I am entering this recipe in the Iron Chef Challenge at the blog A Latte’ With Ott, A.  The challenge for this month is sponsored by Red Gold Tomatoes which is a company based in Indiana.  Indiana ranks 2nd in tomatoes grown for processing.  Linda Wallace has been working for Red Gold creating recipes since 1998.  Here is a link to the extensive recipe section on Red Gold’s website.

Zucchini Lasagna

 

Saute the onion, garlic, carrots and mushrooms for 3-4 minutes until limp then remove from pan and set aside (including the liquid from the pan).

1 Tblsp olive oil

2 cups onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced (about 1- 1/2 Tblsp)

1/2 cup carrot, shredded

24 oz mushrooms, sliced

Don’t clean the pan after the vegies.

Brown in pan:

2 pounds ground round (I use 87% lean)

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

3/4 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried basil

1/4 teaspoon dry thyme

dash of nutmeg (just a teeny bit because the flavor is strong)

dash of cayenne pepper

1 bay leaf

When meat is browned, drain off all of the fat.  Return the cooked mushroom mixture to the pan with the meat.

Add:

1 can tomato paste- 6 oz size (approx 10 Tblsp)

1 can San Marzano tomatoes- 28 oz size that have been chopped small

You could roast your own Roma tomatoes if you prefer.  Many people are able to tolerate freshly roasted tomatoes better than canned tomatoes.

1 cup of red wine (full bodied like a Zin or a Cab)

3 Tblsp grated Reggiano cheese

Stir all together and simmer for about 30 minutes to let the flavors develop.  Taste the sauce and adjust seasoning if necessary.

Towards the end of the 30 minutes, add 1/3 cup of fresh parsley, chopped fine.

When the sauce is done it should be pretty thick and will yield about 9 cups.  You will be adding the sauce to the lasagna in 3 layers.

Remove the bay leaf from the sauce.  I put the sauce in a bowl and used the same pan to sautee the zucchini slices without cleaning it.

Slice  2- 1/2 pounds of medium sized zucchini into rounds that are about 3/8 of an inch thick.  Add to saute pan along with:

2/3 cup finely chopped onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 teaspoon dry basil

1/4 teaspoon dry oregano

1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper

I added 1/4 cup of water to moisten the zucchini mixture.

Sautee for 2-3 minutes. Keep stirring so herbs make contact with all of the zucchini.  You don’t want the zucchini to cook too much because it is going to bake for 30 minutes after this.

In  a 9″ x12′ or 13″ pan, place a full layer of zucchini slices on the bottom.

Spoon 1/3 of the meat sauce over the zucchini and smooth out evenly.

Repeat with another layer of zucchini and another 1/3 of the meat sauce.

Place the 3rd layer of zucchini and the final 1/3 of the meat sauce on top of that.  Smooth the top and then grate a little bit of Reggiano cheese evenly over the top.

Place lasagna in your oven that is preheated to 350 degrees.  Be careful- it’s heavy!

Bake for approximately 30 minutes but check on it with a fork a few minutes before.  We like the zucchini to be slightly firm but you might want it done a little more.

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Dairy Free Chocolate Ice Cream

I would put this recipe for my Dairy Free Chocolate Ice Cream up against anybody’s full dairy premium chocolate ice cream!

It’s that good!

I made it the first time and decided that it wasn’t chocolatey enough so I added a cup of chocolate chips in addition to the bittersweet chocolate and the Droste’s Cocoa that were already in there.

Now it’s perfect and everybody that has tried it agrees that you can’t tell that it isn’t a full dairy ice cream!   Ha!

I also reduced the cornstarch by 1 Tblsp from what I had used in my Dairy Free Fresh Cherry Ice Cream.  That was all it took to make this recipe perfect!

This ice cream has a deep chocolate flavor and is very creamy and smooth.

The first time that I made this recipe I used Valhrona Bittersweet chocolate and the second time I used the same Droste Dark Chocolate pastilles that I use in my Chocolate Mousse.  I like it with the Droste a little better but the Valhrona is nice too.

Thank you again to Eating Well Magazine for their recipe that used Marshmallow Fluff and cornstarch to Rx a reader’s original heavy dairy, heavy fat ice cream.

That recipe from Eating Well got my mind going on the whole dairy free ice cream concept.

It’s funny because I have avoided ice cream for several years because dairy doesn’t agree with me- now I am thinking a lot about which flavors I want to work with next!

The whole jar of Marshmallow Fluff that is in this recipe only has 720 calories and 0 grams of fat.  I did have to add 1/2 cup of sugar to this recipe because the bittersweet chocolate and cocoa needed it.  But it is still much lower in sugar and fat than traditional premium full dairy chocolate ice cream.

There is 1 teaspoon of guar gum in this recipe- please don’t leave it out because it takes away any ice crystals that might form and makes it smooth.

This recipe makes 1- 1/2 quarts of ice cream.

I shared this recipe with Hearth And Soul Hop at A Moderate Life, Delectable Tuesday at Home Sweet Farm, Tasty Tuesday at 33 Shades Of Green, Gluten Free Wednesdays at The Gluten Free Homemaker, Sweets For A Saturday at Sweet As Sugar Cookies, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays at Simply Sugar And Gluten Free, Sweet Tooth Friday at Alli ‘N Son

Dairy Free Chocolate Ice Cream

 

Place in large saucepan or dutch oven and heat until chocolate is melted and mixture is steaming:

2-  3- 1/2oz packages Droste Extra Dark Pastilles OR 2- 3- 1/2oz Valhrona Bittersweet Chocolate bars

1 cup Nestle chocolate chips

1/2 teaspoon instant expresso powder (not instant coffee- too bitter!)

4 cups rice milk

Meanwhile, in medium sized bowl stir together cornstarch, guar gum, cocoa,sugar and a pinch of salt.

1/4 cup cornstarch

1 teaspoon guar gum

1/4 cup Droste cocoa

1/2 cup of sugar

pinch of salt

Add 1/2 cup cold rice milk to dry mixture and stir together well.

Add 4 egg yolks (remove any membrane)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Stir together well to get rid of any lumps and mix until smooth.

Add 1 cup of hot chocolate and rice milk mixture to egg yolk mixture and mix well.  Add egg yolk mixture to hot mixture in the dutch oven.

Stir mixture constantly until it thickens- about 3 to 5 minutes.

Remove thickened mixture from heat.  Let cool for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally so no skin forms on top.

Use immersion style blender on hot mixture in dutch oven being careful not to splatter!  Blend until totally smooth- about 30 seconds.

Transfer blended mixture to a large bowl and let cool further- I place mine on top of 2 blue ice to hasten cooling.

When mixture is fairly cool, spoon all of a 7- 1/2oz jar of Marshmallow Fluff  onto the top of the chocolate mixture in the bowl.  Whisk Fluff into chocolate mixture until it is well blended.

Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on mixture in bowl to prevent skin from forming.  Let mixture cool a little more before refrigerating.

Refrigerate overnight if possible.

Pour mixture into the canister of an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

My Cuisinart took 30 minutes to freeze this chocolate mixture.

When it is done it will not be frozen solid- it will be very sticky and smooth and the outside edge will be frozen.

If you want to add any other ingredients like chocolate chips or nuts, I would do it at this point.

Makes 1- 1/2 quarts of ice cream

Transfer ice cream to a covered container that will hold 1- 1/2 quarts.

 

Meyer Lemon Cookies

My neighbors have a Meyer lemon tree that produced hundreds of lemons a couple of years ago.  I think I zested and juiced about 175 lemons that year!

I also developed several fun recipes as a result.  I still have a little more juice and zest in my freezer from last year’s harvest.  My neighbors just called and told me that the lemons from this year’s crop are now ready- yay!  It’s not a big harvest like it was that one year, but I am grateful to get any Meyers lemons that I can!

If you have not had Meyers lemons before, they are a cross between lemon and orange.  Their juice and skin are much milder and less tart than a traditional lemon.  If you can find the fruit in a grocery store, the price per pound seems expensive but if you break that down to a per fruit price it isn’t that bad.

This cookie recipe (and any of my other Meyer lemon recipes) will work fine with “regular” lemons.  You will want to use less rind and juice from a regular lemon because it is so much more acidic.  You will probably also want to add more sugar- you will need to taste and see.

You can also make this recipe using “regular” flour if you do not have an issue with gluten.

These cookies are thin and very lemony tasting.  If you use the dough immediately after you make it, the cookies will be thin and chewy.  If you refrigerate the dough for 1- 1/2 to 2 hours, the cookies will be a little thicker and more crunchy like a “regular” cookie.  Don’t refrigerate this dough more than a couple of hours because it will dry out and change so that is not as nice.

If you love Meyer Lemons, I posted a recipe for Meyer Lemon Pancakes.

I also have a Meyer Lemon Mousse recipe that I will be posting.

I also make an incredible Lemon Meringue Pie, but I want to work on my crust a little more and make it prettier.

Other lemon recipes that I am thinking about are Lemon Pudding Cake (I just need to make my recipe one more time to make sure it is perfect), Lemon Tea Bread, Lemon Curd Thumbprint Cookie.

You would never guess that I love lemon would you?

If your local store does not carry Meyer lemons, a wonderful online source for Organic Meyer lemons is Birch-Hill Organics in California.  They were nice enough to donate a box of their Meyer lemons for my giveaway that just ended January 31st.  The smallest box that they sell is 7 pounds of lemons for $45, but that includes shipping.  The Meyer lemons that I just worked with here in Arizona averaged about 5 per pound, so if the lemons from Birch-Hill are the same size you will get about 35 lemons.  If that is more than you can use (you can always freeze the zest and juice like I do), you could go in with a friend or two on a box.  You will love them when you try them!

I shared this recipe with Homemaker Monday at 11th Heaven’s Homemaking Haven, Tuesdays At The Table at All Of The Small Stuff, Tasty Tuesdays at 33 Shades Of Green, Hearth And Soul Hop at A Moderate Life, Tasty Tuesday at Who Is Laura, Gluten Free Wednesdays at The Gluten Free Homemaker, Real Food Wednesday at Kelly The Kitchen Kop, Real Food Weekly at The Whole Gang, Full Plate Thursdays at Miz Helen’s Country Cottage, Frugal Food Thursday at Frugal Follies, Sweets For A Saturday at Sweet As Sugar Cookies, Friday Favorites at Simply Sweet Home.