Extended Thanksgiving

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Today I did the last of my “Thanksgiving” cooking, a Turkey, Mushroom, and Rice Casserole using leftover turkey and stuffing.  (This time I even used some leftover gravy and stock!)  But before we get to that recipe, I made myself a list of everything Thanksgiving-related that I cooked since November 23nd (which is when I started the whole process; pacing required due to CFS).  Almost all of these dishes were minor variations of recipes from cookbooks, so the links below are to the cookbooks (unless the recipe was posted online by the author).  Most of the recipes are already gluten-free, but feel free to message me if you want to know the details of how I made them gluten-free, dairy-free, and corn-free.  All were quite delicious (if I do say so myself). 🙂

WHEW!!

 Turkey, Mushroom, and Rice Casserole

Okay, here are the details on adapting my original Turkey, Mushroom, and Rice Casserole to be gluten-free and dairy-free:

Ingredients

  • 2-3 cups cooked turkey, cubed
  • 4-6 oz. mushrooms, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
  • 2-3 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 cups cooked long-grain white rice (about 1-1/2 cups raw)
  • 3 Tablespoons oil
  • 3 Tablespoons GF Flour Blend
  • 3-4 cups coconut milk and/or stock
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 cup leftover stuffing (made with gluten-free bread; or 1/2 cup GF breadcrumbs toasted in 2 Tbls oil)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Saute the chopped mushrooms in oil until they lose their liquid and start to brown lightly. Add the turkey and saute a few more minutes to warm it up. Add thyme and mix thoroughly.
  3. Meanwhile, make a thin white sauce. Melt/heat 3 Tablespoons oil/shortening in a medium sauce pan over low to medium heat. Sprinkle in the GF flour blend 1 Tbls at a time, whisking to combine with the oil and avoid lumps. Cook this roux for 2-3 minutes.  Gradually add the coconut milk/stock (about 1/2 cup at a time), stirring/whisking to avoid lumps. Once all the liquid is added, heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the white sauce coats the back of your spoon. Stir in salt & pepper.
  4. Layer the rice, turkey and mushrooms in a greased casserole dish (2-3 quart size should do it). Pour the white sauce over everything and stir gently to combine.
  5. Top with leftover stuffing or toasted bread crumbs.
  6. Bake in 350°F oven for 30 minutes (covered) then remove the cover for 10-15 minutes to brown the topping.

Enjoy!

Note

  • Today I took the white sauce up a notch by including a big spoon of leftover turkey gravy, mixed in with the roux before adding the coconut milk and stock.  YUMMO!

Copyright © 2014, Lucinda DeWitt

 

 

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Life Begins on Opening Day!

Cubs Twins Caps

Another Opening Day of the Baseball Season means a renewed sense of hope and possibility.  On this day, everyone starts at the same place.  On this day, everyone has a chance for a perfect record, a winning season, going to the playoffs, taking the World Series away from those teams that always win (Cardinals, Yankees).

I’ve got the Cubs/Pirates game on the internet radio.  My picnic lunch is almost ready: GF hot dog buns baked, coleslaw made and chilling, baked beans in the oven.  Later this afternoon the Twins will play the White Sox.

So who cares if outside my window there are still huge piles of snow?  Eventually, they will melt.  It’s a long season and you’ve got to trust it.

Enjoy!

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Resilience

Resilience . . .

  • The action or an act of rebounding or springing back; rebound, recoil. Obs.
  • The quality or fact of being able to recover quickly or easily from, or resist being affected by, a misfortune, shock, illness, etc.; robustness; adaptability.

I keep encountering the concept of resilience . . . in reading, in a sermon, online.  After reading a number of stories about people “springing back” after trauma, I was starting to believe that I just didn’t have any, or that it had been drilled out of me at a young age.  There are certainly many areas of my life in which I give up after the smallest failure or set back.

Just when I was sure that resiliency was either something one had or something one didn’t have (and that I just didn’t have it), I had the following “Aha!” experience:

I baked what must be at least my 30th loaf of gluten-free bread.  Like many loaves before it (though not all), it was a mess:

GF Vegan Sandwich BreadGF Vegan Sandwich Bread

I did what I could with it, and the result was this:

GF Vegan Sandwich BreadGF Vegan Sandwich Bread

Probably edible, I don’t know yet.

What I realized was that one area where I DO seem to have resilience is in cooking and baking.  I try and fail and modify and try again . . . and most of the time even the “failures” are edible.  Perhaps “resilience” isn’t a personality trait so much as a type of sign.  Perhaps the trick is to identify those areas in our lives in which we are willing to try and try again, even in the face of failure.  And perhaps, lack of resilience in a particular area is a sign that it really isn’t what we are meant to be doing . . .

I’ll be chewing on this thought some more . . . 🙂

Opening definitions from: “resilience, n.”. OED Online. March 2013. Oxford University Press. 30 April 2013 <http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/163619?redirectedFrom=resilience>.

P.S.  I find it interesting that the definition of resilience now considered “obsolete” included the notion of “recoiling” . . . a reminder of the more mechanical and physical aspects of the term and a hint that it can be protective (as in recoiling from a dangerous thing) . . .

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Testing Slideshow with Two Months of Baking

Two months since my last post!  Sorry about that.  It’s not that I haven’t been baking, working on sorting out my food allergies, etc.  I just haven’t had the time or energy to write about it . . . Here’s a slideshow of some of my baking efforts.  I will try to add a few posts to summarize the highlights.

 

And a second slideshow of non-baking efforts:

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Too Hot for Cooking!

Apologies for the long break between posts.  The summer heat wave (and my non-air-conditioned kitchen) have brought my GFDFCF cooking experiments to a halt.

I’ve been eating lots of salads . . . green salads, quinoa salads, etc.

My most recent improvised creation was quinoa, zucchini, radishes, carrots, celery, cherry tomatoes, scallions, and some chunks of turkey . . . all coated with an oil and vinegar dressing.

Even my green smoothie adventure was halted when my blender broke! (Good news the replacement part arrived recently, so I can resume with the smoothies. 🙂  )

Today is cool enough that I’m considering making a batch of GFDF Chocolate Chip Cookies (using Annalise Roberts’ recipe from Gluten-Free Baking Classics).

In other news, I attended my first “webinar” a few weeks ago.  The topic was “Post-Exertion Relapse/Post-Exertional Malaise (PEM)” (a common problem/symptom for CFS sufferers).  If you’re interested, you can check it out at the Research 1st website.

Unfortunately, the panel selected for the discussion seemed to have all their eggs in one basket (heart-rate monitoring) and failed to present any evidence that following their recommendations had led to significant improvement in the lives of CFS sufferers.  Still, the talk was interesting and I’m considering purchasing a heart-rate monitor to test out their theory on myself.

Enough for now . . . more recipes soon!

Update:  Did manage to bake the cookies! Yummo!!

GFDF Chocolate Chip Cookies

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