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Beef Barbacoa in the Slow Cooker

Beef Barbacoa in the Slow Cooker

I will admit to binge watching the occasional Netflix food series (Oh hello Chef’s Table). My latest binge involved David Chang’s Ugly Delicious series. The taco episode included Christina Martinez and lamb Barbacoa. I decided to give Barbacoa a try, but I didn’t feel like…

Spelt and Honey Bread (a gluten-free soda bread)

Spelt and Honey Bread (a gluten-free soda bread)

Spelt and honey bread is the result of finally making it to The Flourist*. Once there, I had a lovely chat with Shera (sorry if I’ve butchered your name!) about gluten-free flours. She recommended spelt as an alternative, so I ended up buying a bag…

Vegan-ish, Gluten-free Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Vegan-ish, Gluten-free Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

These lemon poppy seed muffins are the product of a bag of organic lemons that needed to be used, and a desire to experiment with some more gluten-free baking. The base for this recipe comes from The Minimalist Baker’s Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins, but since I’m not vegan (and I like sugar) I used regular ol’ white death (aka refined sugar) and honey. But, I did skip the glaze so I think that evens things out, sort of.

Ingredients

  • 2 flax eggs (I used 2 Tbsp golden flax seed ground to a powder using a coffee grinder whisked with 6 Tbsp of water). If you aren’t vegan, go ahead and use 2 regular eggs.
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce (the base recipe called for 3/4 cup BUT I wasn’t paying attention and used my 1/3 cup measuring cup so…my recipe has 1 cup – living dangerously ahahaha)
  • zest of two lemons
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil (and cooled)
  • 1/4 cup almond milk (I used Almond Breeze)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 heaping Tbsp poppy seeds
  • 1 cup gluten free flour blend (I used Compliments which is the Safeway house-brand…it was a cheaper than Bob’s Red Mill which is my normal go to for gluten-free baking. We’ll just have to see if it works out.)
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour*

*The original recipe called for 1/2 cup gluten free oats and 1/2 cup almont meal. I didn’t have almond meal and I couldn’t remember if my oats were gluten-free so I used 1/2 cup of coconut flour instead.

Method

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line or grease a muffin tin (I used my handy dandy IKEA silicon liners which are working out like a charm).
    2. In a large mixing bowl whisk up your flax eggs.
    3. Zest and juice the lemons.
    4. Add applesauce, lemon zest and juice, coconut oil, almond milk, sugar, honey, baking soda, salt and whisk. It does get foamy because of the baking soda and lemon juice combination but don’t worry you won’t have a volcano on your hands.
    5. Sprinkle the gluten-free flour, coconut flour and poppy seeds over top and fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined. Try not to over mix.
    6. Divide batter evenly between muffin tins (should be enough for between 11-12 as original recipe is written (adjust if altering batch size).
    7. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until they pass the toothpick test. Don’t be surprised if they take longer.
    8. Let cool for at least 5 minutes in the pan and then cool completely on a rack.

I can see using these as a kind of lemony bread pudding base with vanilla gelato…hmmmm.

Also, next time I make these I’m going to leave out the honey. They were plenty sweet with just the sugar and applesauce.

 

 

Chicken Bone Broth

Chicken Bone Broth

Every time I make chicken bone broth I just kind of wing it. I decided to write down what I did last time. This one is a mish mash of different flavours that I have used for different broths over the years. I thought I’d…

Buttermilk Granola Muffins

Buttermilk Granola Muffins

Buttermilk is the secret ingredient in these moist and satisfying apple granola muffins. I was itching to try out the silicone muffin liners I picket up at IKEA a while back and it was pouring rain so it seemed like a good time to bake…

Beef Bourguignon in the Slow Cooker

Beef Bourguignon in the Slow Cooker

This Beef Bourguignon is a mishmash of recipes I looked at on the web including great options from Dinnerthendessert, Therecipecritic, and Sommelierschoiceawards (because I was using a Cab Sav). It’s a cold and rainy New Year’s Eve and I thought having something simmering in the slow cooker was a good call, plus I had veggies and half a bottle of wine that needed to be used up. I hate wasting food (and wine) and “stew” is always an option to create something hearty and flavourful. I also have a small kitchen and hate washing dishes, so I skipped marinating and making a mess with flouring the beef before browning it.

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs stewing beef, cut in 1-inch chunks
  • Salt and pepper, to flavour the beef
  • 5-6 rashers of bacon, chopped
  • 3 carrots, cut in chunks
  • 2 stalks celery, cut in chunks
  • 1 yellow onion, cut in chunks
  • 10-12 mushrooms, halved
  • 2 cups red wine, simmered to reduce by 1/3 – also cooks off the booze
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 health bunch of fresh thyme
  • 1 Tbsp flour to 3 Tbsp of cool water to a small jar and shake into a slurry.

Method

  1. Turn slow cooker to high with the lid on. This keeps everything from getting cold.
  2. Start simmering the wine to reduce by 1/3.
  3. While the wine is simmering, prep the veg and add to the slow cooker (lid on).
  4. Add the bay leaf, thyme and garlic. Let that all warm up while you prepare the meats.
  5. Salt and pepper the beef and set to one side.
  6. In a large frying pan fry up the bacon over medium heat until it renders it’s fat and browns (don’t over brown).
  7. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and put into the slow cooker.
  8. Brown the beef on all sides, making sure you get a bit of caramelization by not crowding the pan (you may need to do this in two batches). You don’t have to do this but the flavour is better.
  9. Add the browned beef to the slow cooker.
  10. Deglaze the frying pan with the wine.
  11. Add the chicken stock.
  12. Bring the liquid to a boil and slowly add the flour and water slurry using a whisk to prevent it from getting lumpy. Another way to achieve thickening is to coat the beef with a couple Tbsps of flour before browning, but I didn’t feel like dirtying more dishes than I had to.
  13. Pour the liquid into the slow cooker.
  14. Give the works a good stir, slap the lid back on, set it to low, and go do something fun for 6-8 hours.

Serve with mashed potatoes and the green veg of your choice.

 

Paleo Swedish Meatballs

Paleo Swedish Meatballs

These paleo Swedish meatballs are mix of Healthy Swedish Meatballs from 40 Aprons and Dairy Free Swedish Meatballs from The Castaway Kitchen. I mixed the two recipes and baked them rather than fry them. Ingredients 1 lb meatball mix (beef, pork and veal) or just…

Paleo Sun-dried Tomato and Turkey Meatballs

Paleo Sun-dried Tomato and Turkey Meatballs

We have a good family friend who is on a paleo diet with additional restrictions including no gluten and cow’s milk products. These sun-dried tomato and turkey meatballs from Half Baked Harvest with a little swapping here and there fit the bill. I used Chèvre…

Christmas Morning Breakfast Casserole (T’was the night before Christmas)

Christmas Morning Breakfast Casserole (T’was the night before Christmas)

T’was the night before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring…actually, not true. Me, I was stirring…eggs for this recipe.

I have made Best of Bridge’s Christmas Morning “Wife” Saver in the past and am all for not having to cook on Christmas morning while everyone else lounges around drinking coffee. I also happened to have about a cup of left over filling from the Vegetable Strudel I had made and I thought it would go well with the eggs (it did). Given we were going to cook up bacon anyway, I thought why not make the casserole vegetarian. So I did. Here’s how it goes.

Ingredients

  • 12 slices of bread that has been left out to get slightly stale (it absorbs the egg and milk bettter), cubed. I didn’t bother removing the crusts.
  • 1 cup roasted veggies if you have them. If not, chop up some ham or do up some sausage and chop that up.
  • 5 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard (dried if you have it, wet if you don’t – I used wet)
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese

Method

  1. The night before, butter a medium-sized casserole dish.
  2. Cover the bottom with cubed bread.
  3. Add a layer of the roasted veggies. Or use chopped ham if you want meat.
  4. Cover with another layer of cubed bread.
  5. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and milk together.
  6. Add the Worcestershire sauce, mustard, salt and pepper, and onion.
  7. Pour over the bread mixture and let it soak through the layers.
  8. Cover and put in the fridge until morning.
  9. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  10. Grate the cheese and spread over the top of the casserole.
  11. Bake, uncovered for 1 hour.
  12. Cool at least 10 minutes before serving.

Serves 4

 

Vegetable Strudel in Puff Pastry

Vegetable Strudel in Puff Pastry

A crisper drawer full of veggies crying to be used, puff pastry, and dinner guests, one of whom has gone vegetarian (no judgment here). What to do? I settled on making a vegetable strudel with goat cheese in puff pastry. I used this recipe from…