Thursday, June 30, 2011

Flourless Chocolate Espresso Torte - Sweet Pea Bakery Review

My birthday showed up on Tuesday and I originally planned to have strawberries and whipped cream for dessert since I'm trying to avoid grains, which by the way is not so easy. When Hubby showed up with a boxed dessert I was a little worried but he did me right and picked up a GF Flourless Chocolate Espresso Torte from the Sweet Pea Bakery.

Not only was it pretty but it was a dense and rich piece of deliciousness. Hubby found the espresso flavor to be too much for him, he is not a coffee fan, but the girl and I enjoyed our slices. I think my boy isn't a big espresso fan either. Silly guys!

Sweet Pea Bakery offers GF, vegan, and diabetic options and they are adding more to these menus as they perfect recipes. For GF options there the Opera cake, flourless chocolate tortes, cheescake, key lime torte, and shortbread tarts. Check out their webpage for all of their options

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Billings GF News

I have a couple new things for the Billings area including another gluten free pizza option. We'll start there since it involves a common love, pizza!

Strawhat Pizza in Billings offers a gluten free crust. I don't have any details on their practices to avoid cross contamination so be sure to check with them if you try their pizza. They are located at 1005 Shiloh Crossing Blvd and can be reached at 406-652-9800.

If you are in Billings, or can be in Billings, on July 16th Dr. Alessio Fasano will be presenting a talk on Celiac Disease. He is the Director of Celiac Research with the University of Maryland. The talk will be from 11:30-2:00 at the Billings Clinic Hospital in the Mary Alice Fortin Conference Center. I have a birthday party for my girl at that time so I won't be able to make it, wish I could!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Dairy Free Pesto Asparagus & Shrimp

Some days I buy things on a whim and when I saw the fresh basil plants at Rosauer's I just could not resist. Their smell teased me the whole drive home and I realized this is a bouquet I'd be happy to receive any day.

I used to think I hated pesto. Maybe my first sampling was a bad batch but it was way too strong. I gave it another go a few years later and didn't mind it so much but it wasn't until I made my first homemade pesto that I fell in love. I could live off this stuff.

The last time I made pesto it was not dairy free but a small tweak resulted in a delicious dinner last night. The kids had two servings and if I hadn't mixed everything with pasta after I took my serving (I'm avoiding grains right now) I would have had more.

Pesto - Dairy Free

2 C fresh basil leaves

4 garlic cloves

1/2 C Vegan Parmesan Cheese (use real parm if you can)*

1/2 C Olive Oil

1/4 C pine nuts

Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender and process until smooth and creamy.

*I used the Galaxy Vegan Grated Parmesan Cheese in the purple container. I've only seen it at Rosauer's in our area and it is in the refrigerated section.

Pesto Asparagus & Shrimp

Pesto, see recipe above

1 package GF pasta, I used Tinkyada spirals

1 lb asparagus spears, cut in 2 inch lengths

1 lb raw shrimp

2 T Olive Oil

2 dashes crushed red pepper

Cook the gluten free pasta according to the directions on the package.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a pan then add the asparagus and cook until crisp tender. I had thin spears and it took me about 7-10 minutes to get them where I wanted them. Add the shrimp and crushed red pepper and cook until the shrimp is pink.

Drain the pasta once it's fully cooked and add the asparagus and shrimp to the pasta. Toss & coat with pesto and enjoy.

If you want to keep the heat down in the kitchen grill the asparagus and shrimp on the BBQ and skip the pasta. Easy peasey!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

49'er Diner & Rice Krispies Gluten Free

I was given a tip on a new GF restaurant offering in Livingston, thanks Lexxy! The 49'er Diner now offers GF pancakes and pizza. They are located at 404 E Park St. and you can reach them for details at 406-222-8204. If you try them share what you think.

The new gluten free Rice Krispies are now on shelves, I found a box at Lee & Dad's and picked it up interested to see if they had also removed the HFCS and they had! I haven't tried them yet but if it's something you miss be sure to grab a box and make sure it state gluten free on it because the original Rice Krispies are also on the shelf.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Gingersnap Cookie Sandwiches

I've been baking a lot lately and I need to stop. It's not doing me any favors on the scale since I have a hard time resisting cookies, especially these.

They are too good but you have got to try them. The cookies are soft and chewy while the filling is creamed perfection. Give these gingersnap sandwiches a try but don't blame me for the results on the scale.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Rudi's Vs. Udi's Hamburger & Hotdog Buns

Here's my family's comparison on Udi's vs. Rudi's. I think both brands offer great products and I'm happy to use either one. I prefer Udi's multigrain bread but Rudi's cinnamon raisin bread. It's all personal tastes but here's our comparison on two great companies.

Hamburger Buns

I was really excited to have a hamburger bun again but I've realized I enjoy eating my hamburgers without the bun. It's not as overly filling and I think it lets me taste and enjoy the toppings more. I will keep some on hand for the kids but I think I'm going to stay bun free on this one.

Udi's Whole Grain

4 buns/ package

I paid $.99/bun at Town & Country

180 calories/bun

5 g protein/bun

6 g fiber/bun

Rudi's Multigrain

4 buns/package

I paid $1.34/bun at Lee & Dad's - It's hard to compare price when it's at different stores

170 calories/bun

2 g protein/bun

2 g fiber/bun

I like the fiber and protein amounts in the Udi's buns better and they look more like traditional buns. The Udi's were the winner from my family, they were actually the favorite brand/type out of all of the buns. They have a nice texture and surprised all of us. The Rudi's have some seeds in them, not a lot, but I could see some picky kids not liking that. Mine didn't care and my boy actually preferred the Rudi's.

Hotdog Buns

Hubby was the most excited about these, he misses having a bun with his hotdog. Again the Udi's has more of a traditional look to it and is very thick. If you want a bun that is smaller and isn't too much for kids I would recommend the Rudi's bun. My kids didn't know what to do with so much bread with the Udi's.

Udi's Classic

6 buns/package

I paid$1.16/bun at Town & Country

160 calories/bun

4 g protein/bun

3 g fiber/bun

Rudi's Multigrain

4 buns/package

I paid $1.34/bun at Lee & Dad's

130 calories/bun

1 g protein/bun

2 g fiber/bun

The winner in our house was the Rudi's bun. It had a sweeter taste to it and I thought the Udi's bun was drier than the Rudi's.

So it looks like Udi's and Rudi's tied.

Strawberry Rhubarb Popsicles or Sorbet

I have a rhubarb mission. To try some new recipes I've been eyeing for years but have sadly made it to the bottom of my "these look delicious" pile. Also I have a lot of rhubarb I want to use.

I wanted something that would be light, quick, and cool. Ice cream came to mind and then I found this easy sorbet recipe. The first time I whipped it together we made popsicles and the kids loved them. The seond time I doubled the batch to make popsicles and sorbet. I like that I didn't have to deal with a dairy alternative and it is a tart yet sweet treat.

Strawberry Rhubarb Popsicles

Adapted from The Perfect Scoop

2 C rhubarb, cut into 1/2 inch pieces

2/3 C water

3/4 C sugar

1 1/2 - 1 3/4 C strawberries, sliced

Place the rhubarb, water, and sugar in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer, covered, for 5 minutes. The rhubarb will be very tender and breaking apart. Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature.

Put the strawberries and rhubarb mixture in a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Pour into popsicle moulds and freeze. If you don't have popsicle moulds you can pour it into small dixie cups and place in the freezer. After about 30 min, or when it can hold a popsicle stick upright, place a popsicle stick in the mixture and freezer until solid.

Sorbet Option

If you want to make a sorbet after blending the mixture place it in the refrigerator and chill thoroughly. Freeze it in your ice cream maker according to their instructions. You can enjoy it as soft serve immediately or freeze for a couple hours to enjoy the hardened version.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

They're Here Too...

I was in Lee & Dad's IGA in Belgrade a couple days ago and spotted these little nuggets.

I haven't tried them yet but I do plan to do a taste comparison on the Udi's and Rudi's buns. From what I can see the Rudi's hot dog buns are smaller than the Udi's. This may be a better thing for my family since the buns seemed to be too much for my kids. The Rudi's hamburger buns don't look like "regular" buns as much as the Udi's do, if looks matter to you. Both packages contain 4 buns.

If you want to give these a try check out Rudi's webpage for a $1.00 off coupon on any of their bread.

Pictures are from the Rudi's website.