July 19, 2012

Corn Fritters with Honey Butter

Our absolute favorite way to eat corn?
Grilled & rolled in butter!

For July's Improv Cooking Challenge, which is spectacularly hosted by Kristen, I decided I would stretch my guys' palates a little. What came to mind was one of my favorite tastes of childhood: corn fritters in Grandma's tiny kitchen.
It was a bit of a challenge to come up with a recipe that was gluten-free & refined-sugar free; but I think I nailed it first try. Here you go:

First, I made sure I had plenty of honey butter on hand.

Then I got a large mixing bowl and stirred up all the wet ingredients. (This, by the way, is an excellent frozen corn we found at Costco.)

I sifted my dry ingredients into a smaller bowl, and then mixed it all together. (I can't believe I didn't snap a picture of the batter! I guess I was too busy watching the oil heat...)

I dropped tablespoon-sized portions globs into the oil & watched them brown.

Scooped them out with my long-handled sieve onto paper toweling.

Here's the hubs' first plate:

& his first bite:

There were no survivors!

July 11, 2012

pumpkin molasses cookies

My daddy brought over some plants for my garden that he had sprouted this spring. I thought I planted a couple zucchini, a couple watermelon & a couple cucumber plants. 
Well, what grew the fastest (kinda took over both raised beds with its foot-diameter leaves...) turned out to be a pumpkin vine.
So far I've seeded  2 of them (the seeds are cleaned, 
salted & sun-drying as we speak) 
and cooked them up in the crockpot. 
After processing, I think I have about 4 cups of pumpkin pureé in the frig.
Decided I would try to come up with a molasses cookie of sorts. Here's what I wanted it to look like:
In the food processor I creamed 1/2 c. butter with 1/2 c. molasses. I added one cup pumpkin pureé and one teaspoon vanilla. After those were smooth and creamy, I beat in an egg.

I sifted in these dry ingredients: 3 cups gluten-free flour, 1 & 1/2 teaspoons guar gum, 3 "mini-scoops" Stevia, 1 T. ground ginger, 1 T. cinnamon, 1/8 teaspoon cracked black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves, 1 t. sea salt, & 1 teaspoon baking soda. I pulsed until I had a nice dough to refrigerate for an hour.
After preheating the oven to 350°, I rolled tablespoon-sized balls & set on my parchment-covered cookie sheet. (OK, gotta admit, the dough was still quite sticky.) I baked them for 20 minutes.

I liked the flavor of the baked cookie, but wanted the outside to have a little more texture & sweetness. My substitute for rolling in sugar was 1/2 cup unsweetened ground coconut mixed with a "mini-scoop" of Stevia.
So I baked & cooled about 3 dozen of these things:
The cookie reminded me slightly of those coconut covered donut holes...
Where's my coffee!?!

July 9, 2012

sausage on Sunday

Here's an easy keep-the-house-cool-when-cooking-dinner-while-gone-to-church dish:

We started with our chopped potatoes, onions & carrots. Then stirred in one pound of Sproutsandouille sausage (which was semi-frozen so I could slice the links.)
Set the cooker to "low" & left for church. When we got home the house smelled wonderful & we dug into this:
My plate:

grown in the heart

I was privileged yesterday to attend an adoption shower. The gals who planned it & hostessed it did a beautiful job. My favorite part was not having to play those ridiculous baby shower games!
Aside from the beautiful & tasty refreshments, the planners did offer two activities. One was tables where we would be decorating blank onesies (my, my, my! -- some of those women were quite creative!) 
For the other activity, we chose a blank alphabet page to compile for the baby's first alphabet book. We drew something starting with our letter. I had "K" -- my kite was not too crafty, I must confess...)

The gift I brought was a bird mobile. I stitched 5 birdies from here, 1 large & 4 small. I assembled it with twigs trimmed from my garden a year ago. Here are a couple views:

The "L-O-V-E" hanging down from the center is adapted from the Cheri alphabet here. I love the dangling from the center of the "o"!

July 7, 2012

Raspberry Peach Crisp (gluten-free)

And, I might add, cooked in my crockpot with no added sugar!

Having guests for dinner tonight... 

I wanted to fix a dessert that would please my gluten-free palate, delight a near diabetic & be suitable for someone with lactose intolerance. As I meandered through Winco, I found some gorgeous peaches on sale. Suddenly I had a hankerin' for a peach crisp.

As I headed to the freezer to get some vanilla bean ice cream to top it off, I spied a bag of frozen raspberries. Suddenly I was hankerin' for a raspberry/peach crisp!

Since it's supposed to be 106° this afternoon, I wondered if I could cook this in the slow cooker instead of heating up my kitchen with the oven. Did a little research & found that the trick seems to be the paper towel under the lid while the cooking's going on...

OK -- so here are the deets:

     stir into crock pot:
          8 cups fresh sliced peaches
          12 oz. frozen raspberries
          1/4 c. white rice flour
     mix together & drop on top of fruit:
          1/2 c. butter
          1/2 c. honey
          1 c. ground almonds
          2 c. rolled oats
          1 T. cinnamon
          1 t. kosher salt
     dollop on top of fruit in crock
     Cover crock with paper towel, then lid. 
     Bake on low 4-5 hours.
     Serve with your favorite vanilla bean ice cream!

July 3, 2012

George Foreman, he's our man... ...wha'?

Nooooooooooooo -- he's our "Lean Mean Fat-Reducing Grilling Machine"!
So, we use "him" for!
(frozen "Normandy" veggies from Costco + olive oil + Sriracha salt = 2die4)


I think Xander s him best of all, 'cause he uses George every day!
He makes a mean quesadilla

corn tortillas, too...

But the fave, by far, is garlic butter bread

July 2, 2012

mini micro mitt madness

OK! This is what instigated my current kick:
I've made several sets over the past few years.
Even wrote a tute on how I stitch them.
personalized some
(embroidery software showing set I made BIL in 2004)
even made some out of old jeans
(excuse the blurry pic -- it was taken with my old camera...)
here's a gift I'm giving on Friday (don't tell!)
I'm experimenting with some that will be a little larger (for my guys with big hands!)
(as it appears in my editing software...)