Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Gluten Free Week 4 - Delicious Dinners

Welcome to week 4 of our Gluten Free Journey, Delicious Dinners.  

For those of you addicted to the box dinners or the par baked dinners from the freezer section, dinner maybe very daunting for you.   While these meal solutions have been completely revolutionary for the family who has dual income earners it has also bankrupt our personal nutritional reserves.  Break the ties now.  Start changing your life today by choosing real foods for your families.  It will be extremely rewarding.
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Gluten Free doesn't have to be hard, don't overthink a gluten free meal.  Remember these key take aways, for each meal you need:  a protein source - vegetables - fats. Fruits can also be added to each meal, just remember they can be high in sugar.  Personally I don't have much of a sweet tooth, give me a potato chip over candy any day of the week.

Let's kick this post off with a brand spanking new recipe to the blog, This recipe is now a part of our weekly rotation and we are l-o-v-i-n-g it.

Lemon, Caper Salmon with Asparagus

 Lemons, capers, and salmon what could be better.  We add some grilled asparagus or steamed spinach and it's a light, supper satisfying meal.  Sometimes I make some rice with bone broth instead of water if I'm needing some extra carbs.  It also is delicious over zoodles or gluten free pasta.  If you do the prep of your veggies and ingredients before you start cooking this meal will come together very quickly.  Plus the clean up of this meal is a snap by using parchment paper.

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2 T Butter or Ghee
4 - 4oz pieces of Salmon, fresh or frozen
1 fresh bunch of Asparagus
2 lemons (1 sliced - 1 zested then sliced)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2-1 cup of Chicken Broth
2 t Capers, drained
1 t honey, if needed
Olive oil, salt and pepper.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  Rinse the asparagus and cut off the woody stems.  To find the perfect point where to cut off the asparagus ends, gently hold the asparagus by each end of the asparagus, bend the asparagus until about a third of the bottom portion breaks off.  This is the point where the asparagus because tough and is not pleasurable to eat.  I use this as a reference and then cut the ends off of the rest of the asparagus.  (You can save the ends to make stock with, feed them to your farm animals or compost them).

salmon and asparagus prepped and ready for oven 
Line 2 small baking sheets with parchment paper.  Lay the asparagus on the first baking sheet. spread them out so they are evenly distributed on the pan.  Drizzle some oil olive across the asparagus and add salt and pepper.  Toss the asparagus so they are evenly coated with the oil.

 * Note: I have to add that we solely use Redmond's Real Salt in our house.  We are nutrient seekers, therefore I don't just put any salt on my food, I use high quality salt that provides me more than simply great taste but added minerals to our diet.  This is not an add, I'm just showing how much I love their product.  

On the second baking sheet lay out your 4 salmon pieces.  You can drizzle the salmon with olive oil if desired, and add salt and pepper.  Place 1-2 lemon slices on top of each piece of salmon.

Place both backing sheets into the oven and set a timer for 10 minutes.  Depending on the thickness of your asparagus and salmon the cooking time could be shorter or longer. *Remember, food continues to cook for a few minutes after it's removed from the heat.  This is a great pointer to keep you from over cooking your food.

lemons slightly browned, adding garlic


For the sauce:  place the 2 tablespoons of butter into a skillet over medium/high heat and melt.  Add the zested, sliced lemon and any leftover lemon slices that weren't used on the salmon to the skillet.  Cook the lemons until they begin to brown slightly and are giving up their juices easily.
Add the minced garlic and saute it for about two minutes.  Do not let the garlic burn otherwise your dish will be very bitter.  After the garlic is sauteed add 1/2 a cup of chicken broth and the 2 teaspoons of capers.  Continue to cook the sauce until it has reduced to about a 1/3 of what it was or it appears slightly thicker.    Taste test.  Run your finger along the back of the spoon you are using to stir the sauce.  How does it taste?  Is it overly lemony and make you pucker?  If so take the lemons out now.

finished sauce
IF not leave them in.  If the mixture is too tart for your taste buds add another 1/4 cup of broth or water.  Allow the mixture to come to temperature and taste again.  If the mixture is still too tart and the remaining 1/4 cup of broth.  (This is the beautiful part of cooking, adjusting the flavors to your own liking, be patient and take your time, it will be worth it.)  If after adding all the broth the mixture is still too tart then add the 1 teaspoon of honey.
Sometimes I don't add the honey to my recipe it just depends on the lemons.
Once the sauce is suitable to  your taste buds take it off the heat.

The color of the sauce will depend on your chicken broth.  Mine was homemade and it comes out a beautiful light brown color.  Store bought broth is fine but will probably be lighter in color.  That's ok.  Just get the best broth you can to add more nutrients to your diet.

Now plate.  Add some asparagus to your plate, place a piece of salmon on top (lemon wedges from baking removed) then drizzle over as much of the sauce as you desire. Top with some lemon zest and Enjoy!
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PS.  You might want to double the sauce ingredients.  Once you get your family hooked on this there will never be enough sauce.  I have to tell my hubby that it's not considered to be a gravy just an enhancement to the dish.  But I can't blame him, it is delicious.


 Venison Meatloaf Muffins

Venison?!?  Yes Venison.  It's delicious and nutritious.  You can make this recipe with beef, turkey, pork or a combo of meats.  I LOVE this recipe because it bakes so quickly in any muffin pan and can be made in double batches so you have extra's for left overs or the freezer.  Serve these beauties up with some mashed potatoes, mashed cauliflower, and a salad.

Link to my venison meatloaf muffin recipe.



Pork Chops with Onion Gravy

We eat a fair amount of pork.  Why?  Because we love it and it can be really cheap.  Personally I buy pork loins when they are on sale and slice them into chops or even small roasts.  You can also ask your butcher to slice the loin for you as needed, I'm usually in a hurry and want to get home and do it myself.  But ask the butcher and you'll be met with friendly smile and willing staff.
This recipe is my go to for comfort food.  I serve it with zoodles (zucchini noodles) most of the time and a salad.  Sometimes I throw some spinach into the zoodles while they are steaming to have a few less dishes to clean up.   This is a really popular recipe on the blog and can be found here.


Deep Dish Pizza Crust 

So here's the treat section of meals.  Pizza.  Pizza is my nemesis.  I LOVE pizza!  This recipe is another favorite from my girl crush Brittany Angell.  This gal can make a recipe like no one else.  This picture I took does not do the crust justice but trust me, it is amazing.  She also has other recipes for pizza crust.  Just try them all, you won't be disappointed.
Here's the link to Brittany's site for the deep dish pizza crust. FYI I am not affiliated with Brittany but would be if I could.  Her recipes are to die for and always spot on.  She has a fantastic new book out "Every Last Crumb" that you all need to add to your collection.



Well, that's all for this week.  Are you ready to start making some delicious gluten free dinners?  You bet you are.
Remember - Real Food is Always best.  Keep it simple and yes you can still have pizza, just be reasonable about it.



Tell everyone what your favorite gluten free delicious dinner is and  link to a recipe if possible.

Love to All,
SheShe

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