Thursday, January 31, 2013

Sweet Chili Orange Glazed Drumsticks

On a recent foray to one of the local produce markets here in Florida I stumbled across a jar of Honeybell orange marmalade.  I was intrigued, as I’ve heard quite a bit about the famous Honeybell oranges, which are actually not an orange at all, but a cross between a tangerine and a grapefruit.  I’ve had the pleasure of trying them fresh as they are currently in season here, and they definitely live up to the hype!

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I love orange marmalades in sauces and glazes, so that was the first thing I decided to make with my Honeybell marmalade.  I added in some sweet chili sauce, gave it a good stir, and used it to glaze chicken legs.

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It was so good!  Sweet and citrusy, with just a hint of spice.  Bonus, it was incredibly easy as it required virtually no prep work.

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Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken drumsticks
  • 2 tbsp orange marmalade
  • 1 tbsp sweet chili sauce
  • Directions

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Arrange chicken legs on a foil-lined baking sheet and season with salt and pepper, then bake for 15 minutes.  After 15 minutes, take the chicken legs out and brush with the sweet chili orange mixture, then return to the oven for an additional 30 minutes.

    Monday, January 28, 2013

    Meal Plan Monday

    Meal PlanSticking with a lot of old favorites this week - I tend to go in phases between wanting to try new recipes and just sticking to the same old tried and true, and I've definitely been in the latter phase lately!

    Monday

    • Turkey Meatloaf
    • Baked Sweet Potatoes
    • Steamed Broccoli

    Tuesday

    Wednesday

    • Pork Chops
    • Mashed Potatoes
    • Honey Glazed Carrots

    Thursday

    Friday

    Saturday

    • Grilled Flank Steak
    • Mashed Potatoes
    • Steamed Green Beans

    Sunday

    Sunday, January 27, 2013

    Gluten-Free Chicken Parmesan in 15 Minutes

    The title may make you think, that’s too good to be true.  Gluten-free chicken parm?  In 15 minutes?  No way!  But I made it happen, thanks to a little (OK, a lot) of help from the freezer aisle at my local Target.

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    Ever since I first tried these chicken tenders, I’ve been hooked.  They bake up in just a few minutes and come out with a perfectly crispy outside and meaty inside.  Bonus, at Target they are just $5.99 for a big bag, same as the regular breaded tenders! 

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    Last time I was eating them, I had an epiphany.  Why not turn them into my favorite Italian comfort food, chicken parmesan?  I used to do that in the past with frozen breaded chicken cutlets, so it made sense to try it with these tenders.

    It couldn’t have been easier!  The directions already tell you to flip them halfway through cooking, so I just took that opportunity to spoon on some tomato sauce and add some shredded Italian cheese and grated parmesan. 

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    Then, after another 5 minutes in the oven, the cheese was bubbly and the tenders were nice and crispy.

    15-Minute Chicken Parmesan

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    Serves 2

    Ingredients

    Directions

    Preheat oven (or toaster oven) to 425 degrees.  Arrange chicken tenders on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake for 7 minutes.

    Remove tenders and flip, then top with the marinara sauce and cheeses.  Bake an additional 4-5 minutes, or until cheese is melted.  Serve immediately.

    Friday, January 25, 2013

    Gluten-Free Friday: Rudi’s New and Improved Bread

    Recently Rudi’s started heavily advertising their new and improved “soft & fluffy” bread, and after spotting a BOGO sale at Publix last week I knew it would be a great time to try it.

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    Am I glad I did!  I have found store-bought gluten-free sandwich breads that are passable, but nothing has really impressed me until this bread.  It truly is soft and fluffy, and is the closest thing to real sandwich bread I have had in 2 years.  It makes a great sandwich, but I’ve been eating it most frequently as toast, as that was one of my favorite snacks and breakfast sides in the past.

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    It only takes a few minutes to toast up, and the texture is nice and chewy, and not dense at all.

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    Two thumbs up for Rudi’s!  Look for it in the freezer section of your local grocery store – they carry it at my local Publix, which is woefully inadequate in terms of specialty GF products, so if I found it there it’s most likely in a store near you.

    They’re also hosting a contest on Facebook, plus you can grab a high-value $2 coupon, so be sure to check it out if you want to try the bread.  Jenny over at Creative Cooking Gluten Free is also hosting a Soft & Fluffy prize pack giveaway – that contest ends tomorrow so act fast!

    Monday, January 21, 2013

    Meal Plan Monday

    Meal PlanI've been in a comfort food mood lately, so I'm planning a few Italian meals this week!  There is something about simmering tomato sauce and perfectly al dente pasta that I find really indulgent and comforting.

    Monday

    • Chicken Sausage - I have a new flavor that I got on a recent trip to Whole Foods, Apple Chardonnay!
    • Sautéed Apples
    • Roasted Spaghetti Squash
    • Broccoli

    Tuesday

    Wednesday

    • Leftover Chicken 
    • Baked Sweet Potato
    • Green Salad

    Thursday

    Friday

    Saturday

    • Bolognese Sauce - planned for this past weekend and ended up changing it up, so I'm putting it back on this week's menu, still craving it!
    • Tinkyada Pasta
    • Green Salad

    Sunday

    Friday, January 18, 2013

    Gluten-Free Friday: Pamela’s Cornbread & Muffin Mix

    I have been a fan of Pamela’s from the very beginning of my gluten-free transition – when I tried her pancake mix, it was the first time I felt like I was getting something that didn’t taste like a compromise.  I’ve used that mix quite a bit since then for much more than just pancakes, and I’ve bought quite a few of her ready-made baked sweets, but I haven’t really tried many of her other mixes yet.  This week, I decided that had to change!

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    I decided to start with the Cornbread & Muffin Mix, I thought it would be a nice break from our usual potatoes and rice sides.  The recipe on the back of the bag is really quick to throw together – the only change I made was using about a tablespoon of honey instead of the sugar it called for, but otherwise I stuck to what the package said.  I also stirred in some canned sweet corn niblets – I love the extra moisture and texture it adds.

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    After a quick 15 minutes in the oven, they were ready!  Definitely quite a treat – very moist and flavorful (probably due to the recipe having a whole stick of melted butter in it!).

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    I highly recommend this mix, and I’m looking forward to trying her bread mix next! 

    Thursday, January 17, 2013

    Chicken Sausage & Sautéed Apples

    I posted a little while back about how chicken sausage is one of my top go-to quick dinners - it's ready in just a few minutes, creates minimal mess, and is always tasty.  One of my new favorite flavors is the apple flavor - I used to skip over it in favor of more savory varieties, but here in Vero Beach they seem to only carry a couple of flavors at my local stores so I've been taking what I can get.  

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    At first, I thought it was a little on the sweet side, and I was debating on what the best sides would be to complement such a sweet protein.  Then it hit me - why not take advantage of that sweetness and serve it up with some sauteed apples?

    It only took me a few extra minutes - I thinly sliced a Gala apple and sauteed it in a little bit of grapeseed oil (I used grapeseed because of the clean flavor, but I think butter would also work great).  

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    After cooking the apples until they were lightly golden, I set them aside on a plate and quickly browned up the chicken sausages.  Then I served it all up with some quinoa and a green salad on the side.

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    It was so good!  The texture of the sauteed apples works surprisingly well with the chicken sausage, and it really brought that apple flavor to the forefront.  For an even more fall-appropriate meal, I think it would be great served up with green beans and a baked sweet potato with butter and a dash of cinnamon.  That's how I plan to try it next!

    Monday, January 14, 2013

    Meal Plan Monday

    Meal PlanI have a much more diverse menu plan this week!  Hubs was in Seattle all last week so I was on my own, but now that he's back I'm going to try to make a bit more of an effort on the meal variety...

    Monday

    • Grilled Flank Steak
    • Green Beans
    • Mashed Potatoes

    Tuesday

    • Chips & Fresh Guacamole 
    • Tacos
    • Green Salad

    Wednesday

    Thursday

    Friday

    Saturday

    • Bolognese Sauce
    • Spaghetti Squash
    • Green Salad

    Sunday

    Wednesday, January 9, 2013

    Gluten-Free Traditional Chex Mix

    Chex is an awesome go-to cereal for the gluten-free community – it’s readily available in pretty much all grocery stores, it’s not terribly expensive, and the boxes clearly say Gluten Free on the outside for that extra level of reassurance. 

    Chex Mix, however, is completely off limits thanks to their use of wheat Chex, pretzels and bagel chips.  It was an absolute favorite snack of mine, though, so for the holidays this year I decided to figure out my own gluten-free version.  All it took were a few basic swaps for gluten-free versions of the ingredients with wheat.

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    I don’t want to print up Chex’s recipe and risk getting in trouble, so here’s the link for their recipe.  Just swap out the wheat Chex and make up for it with a little more of the GF varieties, Rice and Corn Chex.  I used Glutino brand pretzels and parmesan garlic bagel chips, which are both fabulous.

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    It’s super easy to make – you do it entirely in the microwave.  Just melt the butter and seasonings, toss with the cereal, nuts, pretzels and bagel chips, microwave it all for a few minutes and you’re done!

    Verdict?  Amazing, and impossible to tell it’s gluten free!  I have to say, being gluten free is so much easier with all these amazing products on the market these days. 

    If you find gluten-free ingredients too hard on your wallet in the store, check out online sources to get your fix – I recently discovered Vitacost, which has a huge selection of gluten-free food at great prices!

    Monday, January 7, 2013

    Meal Plan Monday

    Meal PlanEasy week again this week!  Cooking has definitely taken a back burner lately, both because of the move and because I’m not enjoying cooking in my tiny apartment kitchen very much.  Keep reminding myself it’s only temporary though!

    Monday 

    Tuesday 

    Wednesday

    Thursday

    Friday

    • Turkey Meatloaf
    • Green Beans
    • Mashed Potatoes

    Saturday

    • Dinner Out - visiting family in Palm Beach Gardens, hoping to find a yummy gluten-free menu somewhere!

    Sunday

    Friday, January 4, 2013

    Gluten-Free Friday: Glutenfreeda Instant Oatmeal

    Eating breakfast away from home can be a huge challenge for anyone eating gluten free.  Breakfast is a gluten minefield – I’ve even heard of pancake batter being stirred into eggs!  Crazy.  When it comes to hotel breakfasts, I like to come prepared.  They are nearly always buffets, and I generally only feel safe with yogurt.  But yogurt is not exactly a balanced breakfast. 

    Enter Glutenfreeda Instant Oatmeal.  I bought a variety pack recently, and grabbed a couple packets before leaving for my recent trip to NC to finish moving.

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    All you have to do is add some boiling water, let it sit for 2 minutes, and you have a hearty bowl of oatmeal!

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    I am not a huge instant oatmeal fan, but I was pretty impressed with this one.  It had a nice chewy texture, and the flavor was not too sweet or fake like many instant varieties.  So far I’ve only had the apple cinnamon, so I can’t speak to the other flavors yet, but I really liked the apple – it even had pieces of dried apple in it for an extra element of texture.

    That bowl of oatmeal made my fruit and yogurt breakfast at the hotel a lot more substantial and lasting!

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