Woodchuck Hard Pumpkin Cider

I haven’t posted in quite some time.  Summer was busy and flew by.  But now that it is turning to fall it is time to settle in, watch Football and start trying seasonal beverages!

First post of the fall goes to…

Woodchuck Private Reserve Pumpkin Hard Cider.

As far as ciders go, it is tasty.  But as far as it being a “pumpkin” cider, don’t get your hopes up.  I love pumpkin everything!  Pumpkin cheesecake, beer, cookies, candles, soup… anything.  But this really doesn’t have a pumpkin flavor to it.  It has hints of nutmeg and caramel.  But if someone poured it into a pint glass and handed it to me I would just think “This is a nice cider.”  It would be great with a fall meal and on the bottle it says pair with duck and turkey which I can see.  But I was really hoping for some hearty pumpkin pop.  So, bottom line, good crisp cider but missing the pumpkin pop.

If you live in Bellingham, Wa this cider and many other GF beverages brought to you by Elizabeth Station.

Gluten-free Dairy-free Kick Ass Cinnamon Rolls!

So my last post focused on a boxed cinnamon roll.  After making these cinnamon rolls from scratch I will never buy those or any other boxed cinnamon roll recipe.  These have great flavor and according to my 10yr old Jackson “nice and fluffy.”  You can’t always get nice and fluffy with GF recipes.  You can make these for your gluten filled friends and they wouldn’t know they are eating gluten-free.  (sneaky sneaky)

First I want to say, if you don’t really do GF baking and are having to buy all these ingrediants on one shopping trip you will think “Holy Crap, this is expensive!”  Yes, it is expensive but things like xanthan gum go pretty far because you don’t need much for your recepies.

4 Tb. butter, softened (we use Smart Balance to keep it DF)

1/2 c. sugar

1 1/3 c. warm vanilla coconut milk (or your milk substitute)  I love Trader Joes!

2 eggs

1/2 c. oil (I used vegetable)

2 tsp. vanilla (I was out but this is where the vanilla coconut milk helped out.)

1 c. Brown Rice Flour

1/2 c. Amaranth Flour (sorghum or millet flour work well too)

1 1/2 c. corn starch

1/2 tsp. baking soda

4 tsp. baking powder

4 tsp. xanthan gum

1 tsp salt

1 Tb. instant yeast

Filling

1 c. brown sugar

1 tb. cinnamon

2/3 c. chopped nuts (optional)

Glaze:

3/4 c. powdered sugar

1 tsp. vanilla (again, I was out but the vanilla coconut milk worked well)

Vanilla Coconut Milk (or your dairy alternative)

Using a mixer, combine the butter and sugar.  Mix well.  Add the milk (hold back a 1/4 cup) egg, oil and vanilla.  Combine the dry ingredients and add to the wet mixture.  Beat on high until well mixed with no lumps.  Add more milk if needed.  (I didn’t need too.)  The dough should be soft but not like batter.

Lay out two pieces of plastic wrap and sprinkle them with sugar.  Put half of the dough on each piece of plastic wrap.  Follow the remaining instructions for each half.  Cover the dough with another piece of plastic wrap.  Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a 13 1/2 inch square.  Lif teh top piece of plastic wrap often and reposition if necessary.  You can spray the wrap with cooking sparay if the dough is sticking.

Combine the filling ingredients.  Remove the top layer of plastic wrap.  Spread the filling on the dough leaving a margin at one side.  As you roll the dough, the filling will get shifted.  The margin keeps it from being pushed all the way out at the end.  Roll the dough by lifting up the plastic wrap.  Once you get the roll started, it will roll ton its own.  Once rolled, smooth out the edge.  Cut each roll into 8 slices.  Spray or grease two glass pie dishes or a 9×13 inch baking pan.  Place the rolls in teh pan and bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.

Combine the glaze ingredients.  Ad milk  a teaspoon at a time until the glaze is the right consistency.  You can amount of glaze to your taste.  Drizzle the glaze over the warm rolls and serve!

(This recipe adapted from http://www.glutenfreehomemaker.com)

Special shout out to my GF brother Brent McCoy, if these don’t blow your breakfast mind I owe you a foot massage.

Chebe Gluten-free Cinnamon Rolls

I decided to try one of these GF baking mixes that has been staring at me for months at the grocery store. They are really easy and pretty quick to make and free of a ton of allergens. They taste not too bad. I have made better ones from scratch, they took more work but there is a greater payoff. Overall not bad for a quick easy recipe.

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*Photos taken and edited on iPhone and post created through the WordPress iPhone app for all you tech nerds*

Gluten-free Chicken Noodle Soup!

It is cold season at the Taylor house.  My poor daughter has been hacking for a couple weeks now.  I decided it was time to make some garlic infused chicken noodle soup.  Kept it pretty simple by just using what I had in the house.

2 qts Costcos Chicken stock

4 cups chopped carrots

3 cloves minced garlic

2 tsp oregano

3 medium chicken breasts

1 box of quinoa shell noodles from Ancient Harvest.

(if I would have had it in the house I would have added onion and celery)

We use Costco’s GF chicken stock quite a bit in our cooking.  I started off by pouring 2qts into our crock pot then added the carrots, garlic and oregano.  Set it to high and let it cook for 5 hrs.  Then with about an hour left I cooked the chicken breasts, chopped them up and tossed it in the mix.  When we were ready to eat I boiled the noodles and then tossed them into the pot and we were ready to eat!  Feel free to add other spices to add more flavor.  I like some cayenne pepper in mine too but that gets to spicy for my kids and my wife’s body reacts to it.  Good luck to kicking that cold’s ass!

Gluten-free Beer Tweasonale in Bellingham!

A while ago I posted that Dogfish Head was coming out with a gluten-free beer.  I had been anxiously awaiting its arrival in Bellingham.  Nobody was carrying it and weren’t sure if they were going to get it.  I even told a local grocery store that I would buy a case if they could get it.  No luck.  But then a new magical beer store opened, Elizabeth Station!  Located at 1400 Holly St. in beautiful Bellingham.  Not only were they carrying Tweasonale but many other GF beers and ciders.  It is a beautiful store that has a lot to offer.  Do yourself a favor and go check it out.

Now for the Tweasonale.  It is a a gluten-free sorghum-based ale brewed with strawberries and buckwheat honey.  It is a light amber color and smells of strawberries.  It is lighter in body and you can definitely taste the strawberries and honey but neither is over baring.  It is a well rounded craft ale and my hat is off to Dogfish for venturing into the GF market.  I think this is going to be a kick ass summer beer when all the fresh berries come into season in Whatcom county and we are making fresh salads while BBQing salmon.  This is going to be a seasonal ale so you may want to buy a little extra and store it for the later spring and summer.  Oh, another nice thing 6% alcohol.  I find most GF beers are closer to 4%.  So grill some fish and make a salad with some strawberries and crack open a Tweasonale and enjoy a craft beer from one of the best breweries around!

Gluten-free Dairy-free Homemade Hamburger Buns

GF Hamburger Buns

These hamburger buns are really easy to make and I use my Breadman bread machine to make the dough for me.  We use these for our hamburger buns but they are great for any occasion.  Your gluten filled friends will not notice a difference, they truly are delicious.

I made the dough in my Breadman bread machine and got the recipe from this outstanding book 125 Best  Gluten-Free Bread Machine Recipes. 

(I use Bob’s Redmill Products for all my fours and starches.)

1 3/4 cup brown rice flour

2/3 cup potato starch

1/3 cup tapioca starch

1/4 cup granulated sugar

2 1/2 tsp xanthan gum

1 tbsp bread machine or instant yeast (I used Bob’s Active Dry Yeast)

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 1/4 cup of rice milk (or your preference of dairy alternative)

1/4 vegetable oil (I have also used canola oil)

1 tsp of cider vinegar

3 eggs, lightly beaten

1.  In a large bowl add all your dry ingredients and mix well

2.  Pour milk, oil, vinegar and eggs into bread machine pan.

3.  Select the Dough Cycle on your bread machine.  As the bread machine is mixing gradually add the dry ingredients scraping bottom and sides of pan with a rubber spatula.  Try to incorporate all the dry ingredients within 1 to 2 minutes.  Stop bread machine as soon as the kneading portion of the cycle is complete.  Do not let bread machine finish the cycle.

4.  Spoon 2/3 cup dough into a prepared pan.  (I use English muffin rings and place them on a flat pan and spray the inside with canola oil so they don’t stick.)  Smooth the tops with a moistened rubber spatula if you wish.  Let rise in a warm draft free place for 30 to 45 minutes or until dough as almost doubled in volume.  Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350.

5.  Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until internal temperature of buns registers 200 on an instant read thermometer.  (I have to cook them closer to 20 to 25 minutes in my oven.)  If internal temp is not at 200 but tops of buns are getting brown lower them to another rack or cover the top with a layer of tin foil.

6.  Remove from pan immediately and let cool completely on a rack.

Dogfish Head is coming out with a Gluten-free beer! Tweason’ale

That is right!  One of America’s top breweries is coming out with a Gluten-free beer this week!  I am super excited to try a new GF beer, especially from Dogfish Head.  Here is the description taken straight from Dogfish’s website “For our first new 12-ounce 4-packs in nearly half a decade, we replaced the classic barley foundation of beer with a mild sorghum base. The hints of molasses and pit-fruit are balanced by vibrant strawberry notes and a unique complexity that comes with the addition of a malty buckwheat honey.”  That sounds good!  It is going to come in four packs and is going to be seasonal.  As soon as I find some I will post my reviews and where you can find it in Whatcom County.

(Photos from Dogfish Head)

Here is a pretty wicked link to the process via photographs.  (It truly is beautiful and exciting!)