Deconstructed warm taco salad (free from gluten, grains, dairy and nightshades)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Okay. This is a bit of a weird shot in the dark that worked out super well. Instead of the usual taco salad that is full of all kinds of things I'm not supposed to be eating (more to come on my elimination diet soon), I created this in a pinch and it was really tangy, creamy and good. The taco filling you would usually stuff into a corn tortilla was laid out on some beautiful sauteed kale, then leftover meat was reused the next day in a romaine salad. TWO meals in one- my favourite kind!

Deconstructed warm taco salad (gluten, grain, dairy and nightshade free)

For the meat:
1 lb of ground antibiotic-free chicken or turkey (sub beluga lentils for a vegan option)
1 cup cooked sweet potato (sub canned pumpkin or whatever you have on hand)
2 medium carrots, grated
1/2 large sweet onion
juice of 1 lime
1 TB grapeseed oil
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
sea salt and pepper
1/2-1 cup of unsweetened milk of your choice (I used So Good unsweetened coconut milk)

For the kale:
1 bunch organic kale
1 TB grapeseed oil
sea salt and pepper to taste
all-over sprinkle of garlic powder

  1. Chop onion, grate carrot and saute both in the grapeseed oil over medium until the onion is translucent.
  2. Add the chicken/turkey, cumin, coriander, salt, pepper and lime juice. Saute the meat, breaking up the chunks until most of the pink has disappeared.
  3. Add the sweet potato and the milk to make it creamy.
  4. Cover and simmer on low until cooked (another 5-10 minutes).
  5. While simmering the meat, wash and chop the kale into fine pieces (postage stamp sized).
  6. Heat a second pan on high and add the grapeseed oil. Once the pan is hot, drop in the kale, salt, pepper and garlic powder and saute until slightly wilted. This will take mere moments (a minute or two).
  7. Arrange a "bed" of kale on each plate then spoon the "taco" meat on top.
The next day, you can use your leftover meat as an add on to a big romaine lettuce salad. Mine was romaine, cucumber, radish, celery and a peppery lemon vinaigrette (1 part lemon juice to 3 parts olive oil with tons of pepper and a dash of salt). Marvelous!!

Healthier chocolate coconut macaroons (vegan, gluten free, refined sugar free)

Sunday, December 18, 2011

These are so yummy. Sticky, gooey, and even though I made mine with carob, surprisingly chocolatey. My mother can’t tolerate chocolate so I can’t wait until she has a taste of these! I served them at a party and they were gobbled up; time to make another batch. J

Healthier chocolate coconut macaroons (vegan, gluten free, refined sugar free)

1 cup unsweetened coconut (shredded)
3 cups uncontaminated GF oats
1 tsp vanilla
½ cup Earth’s balance vegan margarine
1 ½ cups coconut sugar
6 TB of cocoa or carob powder
½ cup of milk of your choice (I used homemade almond milk)

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the coconut, oats and vanilla. Set aside.
  2. On the stove in a small pot, combine the rest of the ingredients on medium-low heat.
  3. Once the pot’s contents are melted, allow them to bubble on med-low heat. This might take a few minutes to reach. Resist the urge to jack the temperature as you can scorch it.
  4. Once the mixture has been bubbling for 2 minutes, take it off the stove and pour it over the oats/coconut/vanilla mixture.  Mix well.
  5. Drop a spoonful in piles on parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Now bring the cookie sheets someplace cool to harden.

Mine usually end up in the garage on top of the car until they harden, then you can stack them in a container. Keep them in the freezer if possible, or at least the fridge. Enjoy!


Herbed turkey & chicken meatloaf with gravy (gluten free, nightshade free)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Wow. I wish I had the wherewithal to have taken a better picture before we packed up the leftovers, but here she is, in all her glory:

Parents- she even contains hidden veggies!!

 Herbed turkey & chicken meatloaf with gravy (gluten and nightshade free)

Ingredients for the meatloaf:
  1 onion, diced
  1 zucchini, diced
  1 tsp tarragon
  1 tsp rosemary
  1 TB grapeseed (or other) oil
  1 TB gluten free soy sauce
  1/2 tsp garlic powder
  1 egg
  3 stalks celery, chopped
  2 lbs ground turkey or chicken*
  1 TB grainy mustard
*I used 1 lb of each (Note: use organic meat where possible, or at least hormone and antibiotic free)

  1.  Combine the onion, zucchini, tarragon, rosemary and oil in a frying pan and sauté on medium/low until onion is clear.
  2. Meanwhile, combine the remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  3. Mix all ingredients together.
  4. Add all ingredients to a bread pan lined with parchment paper (easy cleanup!).
  5. Bake at 375 for approximately 1 to 1 1/4 hours until internal temperature reads 160 Fahrenheit.
  6.  Lift the loaf out of the pan (it should be pretty full of drippings- quite watery even) and place it on a baking sheet (again on parchment for easy clean up) and return the loaf to the oven until the temp reads 165-170 degrees Fahrenheit.

For the gravy...
At this point, you can pour the drippings from your loaf pan into a small pot on the stove, and add:
  1 cup worth of organic chicken bouillon (mine is 1/2 cube)
  a slurry of 3/4 cup water and 2 TB brown rice flour
Bring to a boil, whisking constantly until it thickens.

Serves: 6 hungry people, or 8 people with lots of side dishes

Now serve, to a chorus of "oohs", "aahs" and even a high five or two. You are a culinary superstar.  


Tangy lentil soup (easily vegan, gluten free)

Friday, December 9, 2011

I recently spent a week with my sister and acted as chef while she tended to her new baby. With an inherited ability (our mom's) to produce meals out of scraps, and inspired by Red Lentil Soup by "Dance while you cook", I came up with my own version.

Tangy lentil soup (easily vegan, gluten free)

1 1/3 cup red lentils - soaked for at least 1/2 hour, then drained
1 onion
3 stalks celery
1/2 large sweet potato, grated
1 box low sodium organic chicken broth (sub veggie for a vegan option)
1 cup orange juice
1 tsp tarragon
1 tsp rosemary
Splash grapeseed oil (or other)
Pepper to taste 

1- sauté chopped onions and celery in oil on med/low until translucent (approximately 5 mins)
2- add pepper, tarragon and rosemary to the pot and sauté one additional minute- mix well 
3- add lentils and sweet potato, mix well and stir for one additional minute. 
4- add 3/4 of the broth (approx 3 cups) and orange juice
5- bring to a boil, then turn the heat down, cover and simmer on low for approx 40 minutes. 
6- blend using an immersion blender or by pouring into your regular blender. 
7- return to pot, add in last cup of broth and stir. 

 So simple. So ridiculously creamy and good.

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