Thursday, February 14, 2019

Cauliflower Naan--gluten free, AIP

Sometimes you just want something "bready" to dip into a dish a la' naan or other flatbread.  If you're off grains and gluten, this recipe is a decent substitute--PLUS you're getting more vegetables!

I got the basic recipe here, from the always helpful Louise Hendon: as usual, I tweaked!

Preheat oven to 450 degrees (yes, HOT.)

  • 1 cup cauliflower florets
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup arrowroot flour (see the last ingredient if needed)
  • 1 Tablespooons garlic powder more or less
  • 1/2 t. Salt or to taste
  • You may need to add coconut or cassava flour, a tablespoon at a time--I'm trying cassava next time, we find it a one-to-one substitute for wheat.
Cook cauliflower florets till tender--I steam them, but you could use a microwave--and drain.  Use your blender or food processor to make a smooth paste--if that doesn't happen (and it didn't, for me), add the oil and blend.  Turn out into a bowl, flour, add salt and garlic.

This was supposed to make a malleable dough you could roll out without the additional flour but it didn't--it was more batterlike, so I added a couple of tablespoons of coconut flour till it thickened into a soft dough.

Remember, coconut flour is REALLY absorbent, so just add a bit at a time and it will thicken.

use a sheet of parchment paper on your baking sheet and plop about a third of your dough onto it...flatten with your palm or a big spatula to about 1/4" or less (I went for less!)
Bake for about 15 minutes, but keep an eye on it, oven temperatures vary and that parchment paper gets brown.

I used my toaster oven, but next time will try the oven in the stove, where there's more room...

This really was supposed to stay light colored, but I was pleased with the slight crispiness at the edges.

Let cool and's supposed to remain soft and even a bit stretchy inside--that's the arrowroot flour at work!  I used it as a dipper into a meat sauce, my husband used his as pizza crust.  Either way, it was GOOD, low carb, and gluten free.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Old-fashioned Oxtail Soup!

I grew up on this hearty winter soup--or stew, if you prefer!--and I love it.  Remember the old saying "it sticks to your ribs?"  Well, it does.  It's wonderful, rich, simple peasant food and you really don't even need a recipe. 

Soup-making is sacred, to me.  Whatever combination of ingredients, I feel deeply connected to my ancestors stretching all the way back to the first pots that would hold a bubbling liquid, some meat, and some vegetables. (Tightly-woven baskets with hot stones dropped in, anyone?)

But I digress...

What do you have on hand?  Throw it in there!  We try hard to use organic vegetables and if that's not possible, fresh locally grown, and from the "clean 15" list of those least affected by chemicals.

All you really need are a variety of vegetables (think variety, color, and nutrient-dense!) and good quality oxtails, not always easy to find in today's hurry-up, ready made "cuisine."  A good butcher should be able to fix you up, even if you have to call ahead, and of course we look for locally sourced, pastured, hormone-free, grass-fed beef if at all possible.

I had a couple of pounds on hand--we buy the good stuff from MoinkThe Local Pig in the City Market in Kansas City, or Barham Family Farm in Kearney (MO), but I know there are plenty of other sources out there.

I lightly brown the meat in an iron skillet to bring out the rich flavor, then put it in the crock pot with bone broth, beef broth (home made or commercial) or water, and add whatever vegetables I have on hand.

This time it was onions (always), garlic, carrots, turnips, celery, zucchini, and radishes (yes, radishes!  They are wonderful cooked), and a few greens (baby spinach?  Chard?)  Sometimes I have celeriac or parsnips, but above you see the basics. 

Cut in bite-size pieces and add to the pot. Make sure the liquid covers most of the ingredients, but not to worry, they will squish up (the zucchini sure did!) and cook down into the broth.

Add what herbs you like (we make an Italian seasoning mix), season to taste, and put the lid on the pot.  Set to high and come back later to a wonderful dinner!  (If you use an instant pot, that's good too, I just don't have one.)

Oxtails are so rich in collagen and protein that the broth will partly solidify or gel when cool.  This is GOOD.

This was soooo good I even had a bowl for breakfast the next morning AND dinner the next night.  And had leftovers to freeze for later.
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