What Life Dishes Out A Gluten Free and (almost) Vegetarian Cooking Blog

March 17, 2011

A Golden St. Patrick’s Day Tradition & A Sandwich – Vegetarian Reuben/Rachel

Edit: March 17, 2011  Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

I’m updating and reprising this recipe post in honor of St. Patrick’s Day.  It’s all part of our tradition every year.  The Grandparents happen to be visiting this year and while everyone but me is still sleeping right now,  it won’t belong before the kids wake up and head straight to the front porch, where they’ll check to see if the Leprechaun has left them any GOLD! 

 

We each leave one shoe out on the porch the night before St. Patrick’s Day, and magically the following  morning find our  shoes filled with gold. 

But this isn’t just any gold, since after all, Leprechauns are tricky little folk! 

The boys go to great lengths to keep a watchful eye on their gold pieces, sometimes hiding them in creative spots (like in the freezer or under a pillow) to try to trick the Leprechaun himself!  But inevitably by the end of the day, the gold pieces have all turned to stone.   Oh well!  It all makes for great fun and we still have our sandwiches to look forward to! :-)

I never knew.  I have always called the Corned Beef/Coleslaw sandwich a “Reuben”, from way back in my mammal-eating days.  To be honest with you, Corned Beef is one of the very few meats I actually do still miss from time to time.  Especially Corned Beef Hash, topped with a couple of “Sunny-Side-Up” Eggs with toast on the side for breakfast.  So yummy and so gross all at once!

In deciding what to name this version, I looked up “Reuben” and found that the name really only applies to the Corned Beef and Sauerkraut sandwich, and that it evolved into another form called the “Rachel”, which substitued Pastrami for the Corned Beef and the Coleslaw for the Kraut.  So, what are we supposed to call the Corned Beef/Coleslaw variant?  A Reubel?  A Rachen?   Doesn’t matter I guess, since we are going to ditch the Corned Beef and Pastrami altogether with my version anyway. 

So, you may call this whatever you like.  I’ll just call it delicious.

You’ll need:

2 slices Rye Bread (I used my own Gluten Free version)

1 slice Swiss Cheese

1/3 cup prepared Coleslaw (I told you I had plans for this!)

1 Tablespoon Thousand Island Dressing

1 Tablespoon softened Butter

What to do:

Spread outsides of both slices of bread with softened butter.

Place one slice, butter side down, on a skillet or griddle over medium heat.

Top with cheese,

then Coleslaw,

and drizzle on the Thousand Island Dressing.

Top with remaining bread slice, butter side up.

Cook over medium heat until bottom is golden brown and then carefully flip over to brown the other side.

Remove to plate and serve with chips and a pickle!   This is so yummy, you’ll never miss the Corned Beef.  Okay, maybe just a little bit. :-)

 

October 3, 2010

Layered Fiesta Dip and a “Falloween” Party

Filed under: Appetizers & Dips,Recipes,Vegetarian — Tags: , , , , , — admin @ 7:34 pm

It practically seems insulting to post this, since it is so ridiculous easy and has been around such a long, long time.  There are a few different versions circulating though, and I am asked for this recipe from time to time, so I am going to go ahead and share it, in the hopes that some of you out there might appreciate it and – hopefully – not be insulted.

We attended a “Falloween” party last evening, and I brought along this dip, along with my Gluten Free Brownies.  We went home with a couple Brownies leftover, but this dip was wiped right out. 

My husband tells me that this Layered Mexican Dip recipe actually originally came from the Hostess whose party we attended last night.  It was passed on to his mother back in the 70’s and then to me many years after, and it has changed through the years I have made it so that I no longer even remember the original incarnation. 

Before I share the recipe, let me share a few snapshots from the party, will you?

This party is an annual shindig and it is always so much fun, especially for the kiddos.  Each year, there is a different theme and different activities.  This year, there was a bounce house.

And pumpkin decorating.

My baby decided to keep it pretty simple.

There were more elaborate decorations on display, though.

Last year, professional face-painters were on hand to adorn the faces of the wee ones…

…and the not so wee ones.

The “I’ve Just Been Run Over” design was a big hit with both the big and the little boys.

This gathering is one of the highlights of our Autumn each year, and my boys are looking forward to the next year’s event before we even pull into our driveway on the way home from  the current year’s party!

They talked about the party tonight over Layered Fiesta Dip.  Yes, I did say that the dip I took was wiped out last night.  But I have learned through the years that nobody is really satisfied unless I make two dishes: One to take along, and one to keep at home for the next day! 

Here are the recipe proportions for a single 9 x 12 dish or a single large round platter or pie plate.  Double everything if you are making two dishes like I did.

What you need:

1 – 15 ounce can Refried Beans

4 oz block Cream Cheese, softened

1/2 cup Sour Cream

1/2 packet Taco Seasoning Mix (about 2 Tbsp if you buy it in bulk like I do)

1/2 -12 ounce package Shredded Mexican Cheese (or Colby or Mild Cheddar)

1/4 cup Chopped Green Onion

1 medium Diced Tomato

What to do:

First, spread Refried Beans in bottom of serving dish.

Combine Cream Cheese, Sour Cream and Taco Seasoning with mixer until fairly smooth.

Spread Cream Cheese mixture atop Beans in dish.

I like to leave a little of the Beans on the edge uncovered if I’m using a round plate.

Sprinkle with Shredded Cheese.

Top with Green Onions and Tomatoes. 

You can also add chopped black olives, and as much as I would love to,  my family begs me not to so I don’t.

Serve with Tortilla Chips.

This really is so simple, and so yummy!  Try it for your next party or potluck, but be sure to make an extra dish that you don’t have to share! :-)

July 10, 2010

Zucchini Au Gratin

Filed under: Recipes,Sides,Vegetarian — Tags: , , , , , , — admin @ 9:39 am

This is my favorite dish to make with Zucchini.

This is one of the very first things I ever cooked after being married (not counting the burned stew incident), and this is most definitely the very first recipe I ever invented myself.  We’ve been enjoying this great summer Zucchini dish for well…let’s just say…MANY years!

First, slice a large Vidalia (or other sweet) Onion.

Then, slice 2-3 medium to large Zucchini.

Cover bottom of 9 x 13 glass caserole with a layer of Zucchini, overlapping like this:

Follow with a layer of onion rings.

Repeat the process, layering Zucchini and Onion again.

Okay…you caught me!  I used the same photo as above, but you get my drift.

Finish with a layer of Zucchini.

Just because this is so complicated , let’s be sure you’ve got it:  That’s Zucchini, Onion, Zucchini, Onion, Zucchini.

I’m feeling a little sarcastic this morning, can you tell? 😉

You can cover with aluminum foil and bake in an oven at 350 degrees until Zucchini is fork tender, OR if you are in a hurry like I was last night, you can cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high for 7-10 minutes until tender.  You’ll want to be able to easily pierce the squash with a fork.

Here’s what it will look like once the squash is cooked and ready for the next step, which happens to be my favorite part:

You can see them beaded up with all the sweat from their little trip to the sauna.

Now, cover the whole darn thing with cheese –  glorious cheese!   I used mozzerella, but colby or cheddar works great, too.

Then, top with bread crumbs (Gluten Free, of course!). 

Do you know how to make your own bread crumbs?   I just cut or tear my gluten free sandwich bread into small pieces, run it through the food processor and then bake in the oven at 350 degrees, stirring every 5 minutes, until they are lightly browned and dry.  I store in a ziploc freezer bag in my freezer and they last for months this way.  You can take out what you need and place the bag back in the freezer for the next time.  No stale crumbs ever!

Okay, now pop the pan into the oven at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes, just until the cheese is starting to brown up a bit.   This is what it should look like when finished:

Let cool for a few minutes before cutting with a spatula to serve. 

My hubby likes this with ranch dressing.  I like it as is, simple and delicious!  This is sometimes served as our main dish (like last night) and sometimes sits on our plate beside pasta, grilled chicken, or fish.  However you decide to eat it, I hope you enjoy it!

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