Make Something Monday – Rosemary Infused Vodka & Whisky

Well, hello my pretties. It’s Monday again so it’s time to get off your booties and shake your way into the kitchen.

Last week a very nice lady at a bar handed me a BUSHEL of rosemary. Her 90 year old neighbor had given it to her and she decided to bring it to the bar to share with other patrons. Very kind. Very Portland.

rosemary

The whole drive home I was trying to think of what I could possibly do with so much rosemary and then it struck me like a bolt of lightening. Rosemary infused alcohol! I looked around our apartment and I had about 1/2 a bottle of cheap-ish vodka and a full bottle of Crown Royal Black whisky. Perfect!

rosemary infusion

I filled up two mason jars with about 10 sprigs of rosemary, then topped one jar with HRC Vodka and the other with the Crown Royal Black. They are now resting peacefully in a kitchen cabinet. Tonight I’ll check their flavor and if all is good then I’ll strain them into a new jar and hopefully mix up some fun cocktails.

All those cocktails are easily adaptable and would be delicious with your homemade infusion.

What are you shaking up in the kitchen this week?

Make Some Monday – Chocolate Peanut Butter GF Granola Bars

Being gluten free is expensive. Baking mixes, special flours, cookies, pasta, the list could go on forever. I love granola/breakfast bars because they’re a good pick me up in the middle of the day, but paying $5 for 5 bars at the grocery store is crazy. So this past weekend I started searching the internetz for a GF granola bar recipe that I could bake at home and lucky me found the jackpot.

granola

I came across this recipe on treehugger.com for 5-ingredient Breakfast Granola Bars. These bars are not only gluten free, but you can make them diary free or vegan as well. I picked up some Bob’s Red Mill GF Rolled Oats and then used chocolate chips, peanut butter, & agave that I had on hand to complete the recipe. The great thing about these bars is that you can customize them however you like and they’re also a lot more natural than granola bars you’d pick up from the store which is great for people with allergies.

If you’re not GF you can also make these with regular rolled oats which will make them even cheaper than store bought bars. So why not whip up a batch for your lunch this week?

What flavor combinations would you include in your granola bars?

xx

Candice

Make Something Monday – GF Chicken Fried Steak & Gravy

I love southern cooking, mostly because the food is fried… there’s nothing better than a crisp golden crust on a big piece of meat. (Is your mouth watering yet?) But also because it’s called soul food for a reason. It feels like it’s giving your tummy a big warm hug and makes you feel like your home even if that’s hundreds of miles away.

When I started searching for a GF Chicken Fried Steak & Gravy recipe I knew I wanted to make something that would make my grandma proud. I got a great deal on some Bob’s Red Mill GF Flour on Amazon a few months ago so I have tons of it at my apartment, but you can use any GF flour blend you have on hand. You could even use the GF Bisquick, but I’m not a huge fan of how it comes out as a breading.

chicken fried steakGluten & Dairy Free Chicken Fried Steak & Gravy

  • 1 pound cube steak
  • 1 cup GF flour blend
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (optional if you like the heat)
  • oil for frying (I use vegetable, canola, or grapeseed)
  • 2 Tbls Smart Balance Light (or any non-diary butter substitute)
  • 1-1 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 2 Tbls reserved GF flour
  • 8-10 in skillet
  1. Take 2 shallow pie plates and fill one with the GF flour blend, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Mix together. Fill the 2nd plate with the 2 beaten eggs.
  2. Heat up the oil in your 8-10 in skillet.
  3. Dredge the steaks first in the eggs, then in the GF flour blend. If you want a thicker coating you can re-dip the steaks in the eggs and dredge again in the flour blend.
  4. Once your oil is hot enough fry your steaks for 4-5 minutes per side. You can set your oven to warm and place a oven proof dish inside. Take your cooked steaks and place in the oven to stay warm while you prepare your gravy.
  5. Add the butter & flour to your pan filled with pan drippings. Whisk together to create a rue and cook for 1 minute.
  6. Pour your almond milk into the pan, starting with 1 cup. Whisk all the ingredients together and cook until the gravy thickens. Add salt & pepper to taste. More milk can be added if gravy becomes to thick.
  7. Pour gravy over your chicken fried steaks, eat & enjoy!

I like to serve mine with fried eggs and bacon wrapped asparagus, but hash browns or a small salad would also be a nice compliment. Mimosas are also a great companion to any brunch!

What’s your favorite thing to eat for brunch?

xx

Candice

Updates to Make Something Monday – Beginning this gluten free adventure

I’m pretty sure I have loved bread ever since I was old enough to eat it. But the older I’ve gotten the less bread has loved me back. I’ve struggled with myself for the past few years about whether or not to give up gluten, thinking my issues weren’t as bad as I thought, or that it’s something I could live with. No one wants to be the person going out to eat that has to order something strange, ask a bunch of questions, or always having some kind of modified meal. I just want to order pretzels and pizza like the rest of you!

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Great bread book if you’re not gluten free

In the past few months I’ve started to make some healthy changes to my lifestyle. I started working out quite a bit, drinking less, and tried to get more sleep at night. But it wasn’t enough and my gut was still feeling crummy so I decided to do something dramatic. I tried out a very extreme elimination diet that cut out gluten, diary, and most fiber for one week and the results were pretty amazing. After reintroducing the eliminated foods I realized gluten’s a no go for me, dairy is okay in small amounts, and fiber is good as long as I eat mostly soluble rather than insoluble. The body is an amazing instrument and the food we put into it can drastically change the way we feel on a day-to-day basis.

These past few weeks have been great and hard at the same time. We went on vacation to New York for a wedding and I struggled to find foods I could eat, but this was definitely a learning experience. Not every city is as GF friendly as Portland and I should have done a bit more research & prepared more snacks. Otherwise since I’ve been home from vacation I’m back on track and feeling good.

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Gluten free & diary free chicken fried steak & gravy

So my plan with Make Something Monday is to feature some great recipes that will help others that are in a similar situation. The internet is full of gluten free recipes but I promise to only feature what has worked for me. I also hope to feature how to modify recipes into being dairy free but not vegan (because there are plenty of people out there that can’t eat dairy but can scarf down a pound of bacon no problem).

So please stop by on Monday to see what yummy things I’ve started cooking up in my GF kitchen!

You can also check out my Gluten Free board on Pinterest.

xx

Candice

Make Something Mondays – Chocolate Stout & Peanut Butter Doughnuts

It’s really amazing how life can get crazy, and before you know it 2 months have gone by without a single post. With the end of summer school & the beginning of the school year at work time was spread thin and the blog unfortunately became a lower priority. But now that things are settling down and routine is in place I want to get back to it. So this week I’m bringing you a special treat I made for my book club ladies a few months ago!

I love beer and I love peanut butter, and I decided to combine them into all my dessert dreams.

chocolate stout doughnutsI didn’t have to look far on the internet for this fantastic stout doughnut recipe from Bakers Royal.

I decided to use Ninkasi Vanilla Oatis Oatmeal Stout and it ended up being the perfect beer for these doughnuts. I love baking with beer because the desserts are always less sweet which is always a nice change.

Then I made a simple peanut butter glaze and topped the doughnuts with chopped peanut butter cups.

Everyone devoured these doughnuts at my book club (including our trusty spouses/partners who drive us to and from so we can get tipsy).

What delicious things have you been making lately?

Peanut Butter Glaze (yields approximately 2 cups)

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter (room temperature)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 cup milk (I used unsweetened almond milk)

Combine the powdered sugar and peanut butter into a stand mixer. Add in the vanilla extract and almond milk. Adjust thickness by adding more milk or powdered sugar.