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

September 12, 2010

Gluten Free Quinoa Tabbouleh

My job has been a little too busy for my tastes lately.  Since I work from home, I usually have a fair amount of free time on my hands for cooking, baking, scrapbooking and of course, blogging!   Just think of all the free hours that add up since I save on a long commute to and from the office.  Not to mention not having to shower, get dressed, or apply makeup!  Okay, you probably think I’m joking, but on some days you just might find me chained to my desk (not to worry – only figuratively) and still in my jammies still at 2 o’ clock in the afternoon! 

On these crazy busy days, it helps to have a quick lunch ready to go so I can just grab it and head right back up to my home office.  This dish is perfect served alongside Baba Ghanoush, with a grilled pita or a few raw veggies for dipping.

Traditionally, Tabbouleh is made with Bulgar.  On a Gluten Free diet, Bulgar – which is made from Wheat – is, of course, a big fat No-No!  Yet Quinoa makes a delightful stand-in for the grain and improves on the nutritional value as well.  Unlike wheat, Quinoa’s amino acids form a complete protein, so you can feel even better about this vegetarian dish!

Have you tried Quinoa yet?  This seed (it’s not a grain) is from the Chenopodium quinoa plant.  It originated in South America and was revered among the Incas, but scorned by the Spanish colonists.  What fools those colonists were, because Quinoa is highly nutritious, loaded with fiber, and quite tasty!  It’s also easy as pie to make – it cooks up just like rice!   One of my best friends, who is Gluten-Intolerant, keeps a bowl of cooked Quinoa in her refrigerator.  She tops it with Honey and Cinnamon for a quick breakfast before rushing out the door to work on frantic mornings.  She’s a clever girl!

Okay, enough small talk.  Let’s make lunch.

You’ll need:

1 Large Bunch Fresh Parsley

1 Handful Fresh Mint Leaves (I used Lemon Mint.  If you don’t have Mint at all, you can omit it.  The dish won’t be quite the same, but still will be good!)

1 small Tomato

1 slice Red Onion

Juice of 1 Lemon

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

1/2 cup Cooked Quinoa

Salt & Pepper

What to do:

Rinse, drain, and remove tough stems from Parsley.  Then, chop it and throw it in a bowl.

So that it won’t feel left out, chop up the mint as well.  Toss it in with the Parsley.

Ditto the onion…

and Tomato.

To the bowl, add Lemon Juice…

and Olive Oil.

Now, add the cooked Quinoa and a sprinkling of salt and pepper (about 1/4 tsp each).

Stir it all together.  Can’t you just smell it?

Ta dah!

You can serve this up straightaway but for the best flavor, let it sit for a while first to let the ingredients mingle.  My kids like this salad packed into a pita pocket or rolled into Flatbread as a sandwich filling.  And how awesome would this be sprinkled atop Hummous on a sandwich?!?!

Spawn #2 gives this a big thumbs up!  I hope you like it, too! :-)

June 13, 2010

Gluten-Free Multigrain Artisan Loaf

She’s a beauty, ain’t she?  Both Gluten and Yeast-free, this loaf is a soda bread, with a slightly grainy texture and a rye flavor.  This bread is loaded with good things like quinoa, sorghum and flax.  Heat up a pot of soup to go with and enjoy – it won’t take many hearty slices for your belly to feel plenty full!

Ingredients:

 1/3 cup cold water

 1/2 cup vegetable oil

 2 eggs, slightly beaten (reserve 1 tbsp in a small bowl for egg wash)

 1/4 cup sugar

 2 tsp baking soda

 1 Tbsp baking powder

 1/2 tsp salt

 1 Tbsp Caraway Seed

 1/2 cup Quinoa (or Amaranth) Flour

 1/2 cup Sorghum Flour

 1/2 cup Sweet Rice Flour

 1 1/2 cup White Rice Flour

  2 tsp Xanthan Gum

 1/4 cup Flaxseed Meal

 1 cup buttermilk

1/4 cup plain Yogurt (or another 1/4 cup buttermilk)

 1 tsp milk (mixed with the reserved egg)

1 tsp sesame seeds

1/2 tsp poppy seeds

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place water in a small bowl and put bowl in freezer for 10 minutes.
  3. In large bowl, combine baking soda, baking powder, salt, caraway seeds, flours, xanthan gum, and flaxseed meal.  Whisk together to insure even distribution of ingredients; set aside.
  4. Place vegetable oil into a mixing bowl.  Add cold water from freezer.  Mix with whisk attachment for 2 minutes.  Add sugar and slightly beaten eggs (be sure to reserve 1 Tbsp of egg for later use).  Mix until combined.
  5. Add buttermilk, yogurt and the dry ingredients; mix to form your bread dough.
  6. Place dough into greased 2 quart pyrex round casserole dish.
  7. Comine reserved egg with 1 tsp milk.  Gently brush on surface of dough (use all the mixture).  Top with poppy and sesame seeds, if desired. 
  8. Bake immediately for one hour. 
  9. Remove from oven and invert bread immediately onto wire rack to cool. 

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