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Posts Tagged ‘dairy-free’

I saw a post on In Search of Bees blog about making dairy-free ice cream.  I’m in the middle of trying to convince Hubby that I want need must have an ice cream maker.  The Thai Tea Ice Cream sounded so good that I had to start experimenting, ice cream machine or not.

The recipe is only three ingredients: coconut milk, tea, sugar.  How could this go wrong, I thought.

Oh, but it did…

The can of coconut milk was not milk at all.  I read the label again after opening the can and seeing something that resembled hair gel.  Coconut Cream?  It didn’t look like cream of any sort!  It was sweet and thick, and the can was already open, so I kept going.

I have a box of Indian Chai in the cupboard waiting to be brewed, steeped and enjoyed.  I made a sachet for the chai and put in the pot of simmering coconut cream.  Nothing happened, there was not a hint of diffusion of the dark spicy tea out to the coconut.  The cream was too thick and did not let any flavour out of the bag.  I opened the stupid bag and poured the chai into the pot.  There.  Now do something!

Instantly you could smell the chai and coconut.  How the heck am I going to get the tea out now?!?  A sieve might work.  Cupboards, drawers, nooks, and crannies did not possess the one tool I needed desperately, and right now.  I only have one wire strainer that was to be my sieve for this experiment, and it’s lost.  So much for mise en place, eh?

I turned to the closest thing in my kitchen with small holes: my cheese grater.  It wasn’t perfect but it managed to catch the bigger clumps of chai as the auburn coconut cream cascaded over it into a bowl.  There’s still chai bits in the bowl.  I picked out the chai, painstakingly, one little piece of crud at a time.  What did remain would stay in the ice cream.

The sticky chai coconut caramel mixture was poured into a freezer bag and plopped into the freezer.  I went to sleep.

This morning I checked on the chai “ice cream”.  It doesn’t look good, it doesn’t look frozen.  I’m afraid to taste it now.  In the spirit of experimentation, I tried it.  It has a caramel overtone and a heavy sweetness, too sweet to be consumed alone.  So I made coffee…

The coffee with the failed ice cream wasn’t all together unpleasant, still on the sweet side though.  Let’s call it the ice-coffee-coconut-chai-escape.  The kids seemed to like this concoction more than I did.

Lesson for today:  coconut cream is not the same as coconut milk.

To-do list: Buy coconut milk and a wire mesh strainer.  Don’t forget the ice cream maker.

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This bowl of smoky salmon goodness was inspired by a post on Taste Food, a fellow Food52 contributor (her blog is beautiful, you should look around).  I saw the flour and the cream she calls for and felt worried my tummy wouldn’t deal with it.  I had the stomach flu a few weeks ago and it took forever to recover from it.  I had a craving for cheese and went a little overboard, then paid for it.  I picked up a bottle of acidophilus probiotic, both the chewable (dormant) and a liquid (live culture) forms.  It will take time for this stuff to work but I’m going to give it a shot – anything to feel better again.

Since I’m avoiding dairy for a couple weeks and saw this recipe on Taste Food’s blog, I knew I had to try a dairy-free version.  If dairy is out, might as well replace the glutenous flour with gluten-free all purpose flour mix.  The potato does help thicken the stew (can’t really call it a chowder without cream, can I?).

It just tastes healthy!

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 of a fennel bulb, diced
  • 1/2 white onion, diced
  • 2 tsp GF flour
  • 2 to 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 large Russet potato, peeled, diced
  • 1/3 pound smoked salmon (not the paper-thin sheets, a hunk of fish!)
  • salt and pepper

Saute the fennel and onion in the oil over medium heat in a small soup pot.  Add the flour and let it cook, stirring the pot.  Add 2 cups of water to start with, you can add more to reach your desired consistency.  Add the potato and simmer for 20 minutes.  Turn the heat to low and crumble the smoked salmon (in bite-sized chunks) in to the pot.  Let the salmon infuse in the stew before adding salt and pepper to taste.  Garnish with the fennel fronds.  Serves two.

Easy, eh?

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I still had figs left after baking a cake with them.  Some of the donated figs ended up roasted with strawberries then poached in orange juice.  The resulting sticky jam was a perfect topping to quinoa for a gluten-free and dairy-free breakfast.  The jam is waiting for me in the fridge.

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Just in time for summer in Texas we’re making popsicles!

These are better for the kids than the sugar water tubes you can buy.  Less waste too!  It’s as easy as blend, freeze, eat.

Here are two variations to get you started.  Oh, and I found the mould at the dollar store.

Tropical Popsicle

  • banana
  • mango
  • organic coconut milk

Piña Colada Popsicle

  • banana
  • pineapple (I used left over crushed canned pineapple)
  • organic coconut milk

Berry Banana Popsicle

  • 1 banana
  • about 6 large strawberries, hulled
  • organic coconut milk

You shouldn’t need any sweeteners if you use really ripe fruit.  Bonus is that these are gluten and dairy free treats!  Berry blends would work too.  Get creative.

Add the ingredients you wish to use in your popsicle to a blender.  Pureé until very smooth, add little more coconut milk if needed.  Pour into moulds, place sticks in the moulds and freeze.  We found our small popsicles were ready in 2 hours.  The time will depend on your freezer setting and thickness of the popsicle.  To be sure they are frozen leave them overnight in the freezer.

Dip the mould in hot water or under hot running water to release the popsicles.

The kids absolutely loved these, I’m sure we will keep our freezer stocked with popsicles to keep cool in the coming months!

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Update: I tweeked the recipe a little more, enjoy!

I made these raspberry bars for a friend to make her feel better.  Who wouldn’t smile at this?

Since neither of us can eat tree nuts, and gluten-free oats are not always gluten-free, I modified the original recipe to the following:

Crumb:

  • 1  cup rice flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca starch
  • 1 cup shredded coconut (toasted)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 cups quinoa flakes
  • 3 Tbsp cane sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2/3 c coconut oil

Filling:

  • 3 cup frozen raspberries (two bags organic frozen raspberries), thawed and drained
  • 1-2 Tbsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom

Preheat the oven to 350ºF.  Toast the shredded coconut as the oven warms up, just until lightly golden, about 5-10 minutes.  Set the berries to drain in a colander (save the juice to make fruit syrup for your waffles!  Also good added to seltzer or ginger ale.).  Line a square (preferably metal) 8×8″ pan with parchment paper, this will make it super easy to get the bars out later.

Combine the dry ingredients of the crumb mixture with a whisk.  Add about 1/2 cup of the coconut oil and work it into the flours and spices.   Using your hands, rub and mash the mixture until it resembles a coarse damp sand.  Add a tablespoon of the coconut oil at a time until you like the texture of the crumb.

Pat about 2/3rds of the crumb into the pan.  You want it to stick together but hold yourself back from compressing the bottom layer too much.

Take the raspberries to a bowl, keep the juices collected in a clean jar in your fridge until you can make something with it.  Don’t waste anything!  Stir in the other filling ingredients.  Spread the berry filling evenly over the bottom crust in the pan.

(option: add a bit more cinnamon to the remaining crumb mixture and some honey)  Lightly sprinkle the remaining crumb on top of the filling.  Bake for 30 – 45 minutes (it will depend on the type of pan and your oven).

Let it cool completely before removing it from the pan, you can put the whole pan in the fridge to cool the pan before picking up the parchment ends to remove the bars.  Cut into squares or bars and keep refrigerated up to 3 days (if they last that long!).  Best served the day you make them.

Chef’s Notes: With the quantities of quinoa and coconut listed in this version, it seemed like there wasn’t enough of the crumb to go around.  Next time, I will use 2 cups of quinoa flakes and 2/3 cup shredded coconut.  The toasted bits of coconut give hints of a nutty flavor and crunch that is missing due to the absent oats.

Pepper was eyeing herself a raspberry bar too.

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