A great big welcome to Lexie's Kitchen & Living. I hope you enjoy the recipes and ramblings. For the story behind this site read here

Follow a gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free diet? Check out my recently released cookbook

 


 

 

 

Tuesday
Oct262010

Lexie's Chili Seasoning

Chili seasoning pictured in a beloved ladle I found beachcombing on the shores of the Italian Riviera back in my college day. What a treasure!

Lexie's Chili Seasoning

This recipe is: Gluten-Free | Casein-Free | Citrus-Free | Corn-Free | Dairy-Free | Egg-Free | Fish-Free | Peanut-Free | Potato-Free | Shellfish-Free | Soy-Free | Tree Nut-Free | Wheat-Free | Sweetener-Free | GFCF | Vegetarian

Makes:  Approximately 3/4 cup
Prep Time:  5 minutes

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons CHILI POWDER
2 tablespoons BROWN RICE FLOUR
1 tablespoon GARLIC POWDER
1 tablespoon SALT
1 tablespoon CUMIN
2 teaspoons CORIANDER
2 teaspoons dried OREGANO
2 teaspoons PAPRIKA
1-2 teaspoons COCOA POWDER
1/2-1 teaspoon INSTANT COFFEE (I use one Starbucks® VIA packet)
1/2 teaspoon CELERY SEED
1/8 teaspoon ground CLOVES
1/8 teaspoon ALLSPICE
1/8 teaspoon CINNAMON
1/8 teaspoon CAYENNE (optional, I leave this out to keep it mild for the kids)

Directions:

Measure ingredients into a jar. Cover and shake until well combined. Makes approximately 3 batches of Slow Cooker Buffalo Chili.

Friday
Oct222010

Hazelnut Brownies | Gluten-, Egg- & Grain-Free

Serve up these brownies and I'll bet you get some raised eyebrows. "No egg? No grain? Really?" Really.

The inspiration for this recipe comes from three exceptionally talented recipe developers, Elana at Elana's Pantry, Kelly at The Spunky Coconut and Amy at Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free. Last spring, for a family gathering, I baked batches of Elana's Chocolate Chip Brownies, Kelly's Egg-Free Grain-Free Brownies and Amy's Chewy Chocolate Vegan Date Brownies and held a taste test. I invited my family to help proclaim the "best brownie." After countless mmmm's and ahhh's and hands reaching in for seconds and thirds, the votes were tallied. We had an honest-to-goodness three-way tie! And, it was no surprise. Each brownie had its unique, star attributes.

What attracted me to Amy's recipe was the use of dates as a sweetener. What attracted me to Kelly and Elana's recipes was the main ingredient they shared—almond butter. What a concept. Protein with your brownie! So the other day as I stood in the kitchen licking Justin's Chocolate Hazelnut Butter off a spoon, the thought came to me—vegan, date-sweetened, hazelnut brownies? Alas with some borrowing from Amy, Kelly and Elana, I present gluten-free, egg-free and grain-free Hazelnut Brownies.

Thank you Elana, Kelly and Amy for your inspiration!

Hazelnut Brownies

Gluten-Free | Casein-Free | Citrus-Free | Corn-Free | Dairy-Free | Egg-Free | Fish-Free | Nightshade-Free | Peanut-Free | Potato-Free | Rice-Free | Shellfish-Free | Soy-Free | Wheat-Free | Grain-Free | GFCF | Vegetarian | Vegan

Makes: 16 brownies
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35-40 minutes 

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Combine and set aside to soften:

1 cup boiling filtered WATER
1/3-1/2 cup gently packed DATES (about 12 small or 9 large)

Add to food processor and process until very smooth:

Softened DATES and SOAKING WATER (remove pits and any stem debris)
1 tablespoon extra light OLIVE OIL or extra virgin COCONUT OIL
2 teaspoons gluten-free VANILLA EXTRACT
1 teaspoon LEMON JUICE
30 drops vanilla creme or chocolate SWEET LEAF LIQUID STEVIA
1/3 cup EVAPORATED CANE JUICE or COCONUT PALM SUGAR
1/2 cup JUSTIN'S CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT BUTTER (or other chocolate nut butter)
2 tablespoons FLAX MEAL
1/2 scant teaspoon SEA SALT

Add to processor and process for one minute or until super smooth:

1/2 cup HAZELNUT MEAL (such as Bob's Red Mill which states it is gluten-free)
1/3 cup COCONUT FLOUR
1/3 cup COCOA POWDER

Finally, add to processor and process until just incorporated (do not over-mix):

2 teaspoons non-aluminum, corn-free BAKING POWDER (make your own)
1/2 teaspoon BAKING SODA

Gently and immediately spoon batter into a glass 9x9" oiled glass baking dish. With moistened hands, smooth top using a very light touch. Top brownie batter with and gently press in:

1/2 cup mini CHOCOLATE CHIPS (I use Enjoy Life® dairy-free, gluten-free, soy-free mini chocolate chips)
2 tablespoons HAZELNUT MEAL

Bake at 350˚F for 40 minutes. Allow to cool completely before cutting.

Friday
Oct222010

Sausage & Seasonal Vegetable Stuffed Squash

Spaghetti, Kabocha, Pumpkin, Hubbard, Acorn and more. This time of year beautiful—and tasty—winter squash abound. Last night we made stuffed Delicata squash using seasonal produce and spicy Italian sausage. Delicata, also known as sweet potato squash, is creamy with a tinge of, well, sweet. Like Acorn squash, Delicata halves make perfect individual servings and dress up any plate. I'm eager to stuff a Spaghetti squash with this sausage stuffing for a dish that's a tad more savory than sweet. Just pick your favorite squash and go for it!

Sausage and Seasonal Vegetable Stuffed Squash

Gluten-Free | Casein-Free | Citrus-Free | Corn-Free | Dairy-Free | Egg-Free | Fish-Free | Peanut-Free | Potato-Free | Shellfish-Free | Soy-Free | Tree Nut-Free | Wheat-Free | Sweetener-Free | GFCF

Serves:  4
Prep Time:  40 minutes
Cook Time:  1 hour

Ingredients:

1 pound ITALIAN SAUSAGE, browned and crumbled (pick your heat)
3-5 medium DELICATA SQUASH
5 small dried SHIITAKE MUSHROOMS (or other dried mushroom)
1/2 cup very HOT WATER
3 tablespoons extra virgin OLIVE OIL
1-1/2 cups roughly chopped CAULIFLOWER
1/2 cup roughly chopped CELERY
1 small ONION, roughly chopped
3 tablespoons WHITE COOKING WINE
1 cup CHERRY TOMATOES
1 cup cubed ZUCCHINI
1/2 cup diced BELL PEPPER
1 cup cooked RICE
2 tablespoons fresh BASIL, roughly chopped or 2 teaspoons dried
1/2 teaspoon PAPRIKA
1/2 teaspoon SEA SALT or to taste
1/4 teaspoon dried SAGE
PEPPER to taste
CAYENNE to taste
1 cup DAIYA® CHEDDAR STYLE SHREDS or 1 cup shredded cheddar if diet allows (Optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375˚F.

Carefully cut squash in half lengthwise, scoop out and toss seeds, reserve.

Combine mushrooms and hot water and set aside to soak. When mushrooms are plump, roughly chop and reserve soaking liquid. Transfer mushrooms, cauliflower and onion to food processor fitted with the "S" blade. Pulse until the texture of rice.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat and add cauliflower mixture, reserved mushroom liquid and wine. Saute 10-15 minutes or until liquid has evaporated and cauliflower mixture is light and fluffy. Add browned sausage and remaining ingredients (except Daiya cheese shreds) to skillet, gently toss and heat through.

Scoop and gently pack sausage stuffing into squash and sprinkle with additional paprika. Arrange squash in shallow, oven-proof casserole dish with lid. Pour 1/4" water into bottom of casserole dish and bake covered for 45-60 minutes or until squash is tender when poked with a fork. Remove cover, sprinkle with Daiya shreds and bake uncovered for an additional 5-10 minutes or until cheese shreds have melted. Allow to cool a few minutes before serving.

Notes:

Unlike most winter squash, the skin of Delicata squash is thin and tender enough to be eaten when cooked. Personally, I still scoop the flesh out of the skin and eat that way.

Monday
Oct182010

Creamy Dairy-Free Pumpkin Smoothie

Anyone want some pumpkins? We've got an abundance with plenty to share! Every other day, it seems, I've been cooking up a couple of pie pumpkins in the slow cooker, a method I read about at Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free. I've made pumpkin bars, pumpkin pie, dehydrated pumpkin granola balls (total bomb!), pumpkin puree for my dog (yup, she needs to lose some weight) and today, a pumpkin smoothie. Let me know if you agree that it tastes a lot like chilled pumpkin pie served in a glass! Pumpkin is loaded with vitamin A and antioxidant carotenoids and is a good source of vitamins C, K and E, and lots of minerals, including magnesium, potassium and iron. I'll drink to that!

Creamy Dairy-Free Pumpkin Smoothie

Gluten-Free | Casein-Free | Citrus-Free | Corn-Free | Dairy-Free | Egg-Free | Fish-Free | Nightshade-Free | Peanut-Free | Potato-Free | Rice-Free | Shellfish-Free | Soy-Free | Wheat-Free | Grain-Free | GFCF | Vegetarian | Vegan

Serves:  2-4
Prep Time: 3 minutes

Ingredients:

2 cups ALMOND MILK (how to make almond milk)
1/2 cup cooked PUMPKIN PUREE (here is the slow cooker method for cooking pumpkin)
1/4 cup raw WALNUTS (preferably soaked and rinsed in water for 8-10 hours, but not necessary)
1 APPLE, cored and quartered
3 tablespoons no sugar added APPLE BUTTER (such as Tap 'n Apple)
1 tablespoon MAPLE SYRUP
Pinch SEA SALT
1-2 cups ICE

Directions:

Blend all ingredients, except for ice, on high in a high-powered blender (such as a Blendtec) for one minute. Add ice and blend until smooth. The colder the better!

Add additional almond milk or water to adjust smoothie consistency to your liking.

Saturday
Oct162010

Kimchi Scared Me Silly

Every time I open Sally Fallon and Mary Enig's book, Nourishing Traditions, I learn something. This week I have been studying up on lacto-fermentation which Sally dedicates an entire section of the book to. She points out that "in earlier times, people knew how to preserve vegetables for long periods without the use of freezers or canning machines." The way they did this was through the process of lacto-fermentation. Here's what Sally has to say about it:

“The proliferation of lactobacilli in fermented vegetables enhances their digestibility
and increases vitamin levels. These beneficial organisms produce numerous helpful
enzymes as well as antibiotic and anticarcinogenic substances. Their main by-product,
lactic acid, not only keeps vegetables and fruits in a state of perfect preservation but
also promotes the growth of healthy flora throughout the intestine.”

                                                                         Sally Fallon, Nourishing Traditions

Honestly, up until this week, fermenting anything in my kitchen was out of the question—unless it was by accident in the back of the fridge. So to tell me that I should mix some vegetables together in a glass jar, add some salt and let it sit on the counter for three days and then eat it. Hmmm, "no thanks!" But putting fear aside, I did it. I tried Sally's recipe for Kimchi and it worked! I am alive, I am not suffering from gastric distress or food poisoning—I have tried it and am a convert.

Fermentation is a big topic and worth reading up on. If you're interested in adding more beneficial probiotics to your diet or just want to learn more about it, buy Sally's book or read up on it online. In the meantime, if you are a fan of kimchi, give this recipe a try. It's a flavorful condiment that I like to serve with Korean bulgogi and rice.

One more thing. If you are a fan of the Noursihing Traditions book, check out The Nourishing Cook! Kim Knoch has taken on the challenge of cooking through all 773 of Sally’s recipes—think Julie and Julia. Whoa! I am impressed. She has been at it since December 2009. There are no photos in the Nourishing Traditions book so if you want to see what a finished product looks like, head on over to The Nourishing Cook.

Korean Sauerkraut (Kimchi)
A recipe from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon with Mary G. Enig, Ph.D.

Gluten-Free | Casein-Free | Citrus-Free | Corn-Free | Dairy-Free | Egg-Free | Fish-Free | Peanut-Free
Potato-Free | Rice-Free | Soy-Free |  Tree Nut-Free | Shellfish-Free |
Wheat-Free | Grain-Free
Sweetener-Free | GFCF | Vegetarian | Vegan | Raw

Makes:  2 quarts
Prep Time:  15 minutes
Fermentation Time:  About 3 days

Ingredients:

1 head NAPA CABBAGE cored and shredded
1 bunch GREEN ONIONS, chopped
1 cup CARROTS, grated
1/2 cup DAIKON RADISH, grated (optional)
1 tablespoon freshly grated GINGER
3 cloves GARLIC, peeled and minced
1/2 teaspoon dried CHILI FLAKES
1 tablespoon SEA SALT
4 tablespoons WHEY (if not available, use an additional 1 tablespoon SEA SALT — which I did. For more information on use of whey, consult the book) Do not use whey if you have a dairy allergy/intolerance.

Directions:

Place vegetables, ginger, garlic, red chili flakes, sea salt and whey (or extra tablespoon sea salt) in a bowl and pound with a wooden pounder or a meat hammer to release juices. Place in a quart-sized, wide-mouth mason jar and press down firmly with a pounder or meat hammer until juices come to the top of the cabbage. The top of the vegetables should be at least 1 inch below the top of the jar. Cover tightly and keep at room temperature for about 3 days before transferring to cold storage.

The next time I make this recipe, I will add more chili pepper or some cayenne and/or paprika for added heat and richer colored red juice.