Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Gluten Free Macaroni and Cheese

Yes, Yes, I'm still alive. It has been a trying couple of weeks. My car broke down and had to have the engine rebuilt and then my wife got strep throat. I figure I'm about a six pack of beer and a lost dog away from a good Country Western song. Here in the Portland area the weather can't seem to decide what to do. One day it's sunny and warm, the next it is cold, windy, and rainy. It's best just to whip up some comfort food and stick close to home this time of year. I don't usually get too crazy with macaroni and cheese. Simple is often best. However, I saw an episode of Barefoot Contessa where Ina made up some mac and cheese that looked delicious, bold, and easy. So, I had to give it a go.
Grown Up Macaroni and Cheese:
courtesy of Ina Garten, modified to be GF
4 ounces thick-sliced bacon
8-12 ounces GF elbow pasta (I use Ancient Harvest Quinoa)
1 1/2 cups milk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons GF flour mix
4 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated
3 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar, grated
2 ounces blue cheese, such as Roquefort, crumbled
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Pinch nutmeg
2 slices GF sandwich bread (I use Whole Foods Brand)
2 tablespoons freshly chopped basil leaves Cook the pasta per directions on the package. Drain well and set aside. Cook the bacon, coarsely chop and set aside.
In a medium sauce pan, melt butter and add the gf flour. Stir to combine. Whisk in the milk until it become smooth and coats the back of a spoon. Do not allow the milk to boil. Add all of the cheese and stir until smooth and creamy.
Add the chopped bacon, pepper, and nutmeg.
In a food processor, add the gf bread and basil. Pulse until combined into crumbs.
Mix the pasta and cheese sauce together. Pour into a 9x13 baking dish or several smaller baking dishes. Cover with bread crumb mixture. Bake at 400 degrees F for 10-15 minutes or until the bread topping is golden brown. Enjoy!!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Gluten Free Glazed Chicken with Pineapple Salsa

A little while back my wife subscribed to Bon Appetit magazine as a gift for me. So besides finding new recipes on the Internet to try, Bon Appetit has become my inspiration for new recipes. Unfortunately, some of the recipes that look great in the magazine have ended up in the garbage after one bite. I hate spending the time and money to try something new only to be thoroughly disappointed. On the other hand, I have found some really good recipes in the magazine also. I knew this recipe for glazed chicken was a hit when my wife asked me when I could make it again. The glaze for the chicken is sweet and tangy and the pineapple salsa is fresh and tropical. It is very delicious.
Glazed Chicken with Pineapple Salsa
from Bon Appetit
Serves 4
For the chicken:
1/4 cup pineapple juice
2 Tbs brown sugar (packed)
1 Tbs yellow mustard
For the salsa:
3/4 cup fresh pineapple cut into 1/4 inch cubes
3 Tbs diced red pepper
3 Tbs chopped cilantro
1-1/2 Tbs diced red onion
1-1/2 Tbs diced jalapeno pepper (adjust amount to your liking)
pinch of salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Bring pineapple juice, brown sugar, and mustard to a boil in a small sauce pan. Stir together and boil until the glaze is thickened slightly, about 1 minute. Line a baking sheet with foil. Place the chicken on the baking sheet and brush both side of chicken with the glaze. Bake for 15 minutes. Apply another coat of glaze and broil to finish cooking, about 5 minutes longer. Keep an eye on the chicken so it doesn't burn under the broiler.
For the salsa, combine all the salsa ingredients together in a medium bowl. It is best to make the salsa at least an hour ahead of time to allow the flavors to meld a bit.
Spoon the salsa over the chicken. Serve with rice and a vegetable and you are all set to eat a delicious and easy weeknight meal. Enjoy!!!