Monday, July 29, 2013

Green Fries w/ Pink Sauce! GF, V, SCD, & Paleo!

Hey Happy Tummies!

How was everyone’s weekend? Things here couldn’t be better.

I’m actually home right now in Cincinnati, becauuuuse…………MY BROTHER AND HIS WIFE HAD A BABY!!!!

Yes! They welcomed an absolutely precious little girl into the world on 7/17! So I flew home this weekend to meet my niece! That’s right! I’m an aunt!!

She is the absolute sweetest little girl in the world. I loved holding her as she slept in my arms. Congratulations you two. I couldn’t be more excited for you!

So before I left, I had a “use up the ingredients in the fridge” type of meal. I don’t know why, but those meals are always SO GOOD! And this one was no exception.

What did I make? Green Bean & Zucchini Fries with a creamy Red Pepper and Tomato Sauce!

Wow. And it’s Gluten Free, Vegan, Specific Carb Diet Friendly, and Paleo with a Body Ecology Diet option!

Here’s what you need: (serves 1)

1 big handful of fresh green beans (about 25-30 beans)
1 zucchini, cut into fries

½ red pepper
2 cups cherry tomatoes, or 2 tomatoes (BED sub 1 whole roasted red pepper)
1 cup cauliflower (I used frozen)
¼ onion, chopped
1 garlic clove
10 cashews
dried basil and oregano (1/2 tsp each)

fresh basil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a tin-foil-lined, olive-oil-sprayed baking sheet, spread out your zucchini and green beans in a single layer. Spritz them with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 40 minutes, flipping once, half-way through. Sprinkle with more salt after them come out of the oven.

Meanwhile, sauté your onion in a skillet with 1 tsp EVOO, salt, pepper, and dried herbs. Let them soften for about 4 minutes. Then, add your red pepper. Let that cook for another 5 minutes. Finally, add your garlic and tomatoes. Let that cook for about 3-4 minutes. Transfer to your food processor.

While your veggies are cooking, steam your cauliflower florets until tender. I did this by microwaving them for 3 minutes in a Pyrex measuring cup. Add the cooked cauliflower to your food processor.
Also add 10 cashews to the food processor and process everything until smooth and creamy: for about 1 ½ minutes. You’ll need to scrape the sides once or twice.

To assemble: Place 3 Tbsp of the sauce on the bottom of the plate. Place your green beans and zucchini on top of the sauce. Top with another healthy dollop on top. Garnish with fresh basil.

My goodness, how good was this dinner?! If you’ve never “blistered” green beans like this, you NEED to try it. As in, stop what you’re doing right now, and throw some in the oven! They’re that good! They become super crispy – almost like fries!

And the sauce! Holy camoley. It was just marvelous. First, the color was gorgeous – salmon pinky-orange. And it was so rich and creamy from the cashews and cauliflower. It had a slightly sweet note from the red pepper, but then the comforting and cozy flavor of tomato and basil.

It was a perfect pairing with our green fries.

I need to make some “clean out the fridge” meals more often!

All right, that’s it for now! Talk to you soon!!

Want more GFHT?  You can now get my e-cookbook, The Best of GlutenFreeHappyTummy for only $2.99 on Amazon!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Purple People Pleaser Salad! GF, V, SCD, BED & Paleo!

Hey everyone!

I'm so glad you all enjoyed my post on Hu Kitchen! What a fabulous dining experience!!

So, even though school supply commercials are starting to pop up on TV, I'm still in FULL summer mode! I hope you are too:) I mean, it's still July! We've got August ahead of us! (Which, IMHO is the best  month...cuz it's my birthday month:))

I love summer because of all the fun social get-togethers! During the summer, cookouts are the name of the game. I don't know about you, but whenever I go to someone's house for dinner, I always want to help with the cooking and bring a dish. How many times have you said, "I'll bring the salad!" It's probably the standard "bring along" dish, (aside from dessert).

Well, why not bring a salad that will steal the show:) more boring "salad in a bag." This dish will be the hit of the cookout!

It's colorful, crunchy, healthy, and absolutely BURSTING with flavor!

I call it, my Purple People Pleaser Salad!

And it's Gluten Free, Vegan, Specific Carb Diet, Body Ecology Diet friendly, and Paleo!

Here's what you need:

Serves 2 hungry people (as a main dish...4 as a side dish)

1/2 head of purple cabbage, shredded
2 carrots, shaved into long strips with a veggie peeler
1 cucumber, seeded and sliced
1/4 red onion, sliced thin and soaked in ice water
1/2 red pepper, sliced thin
15 green beans, chopped into bite sized pieces
1/2 avocado, diced
3-4 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
12 cashews, chopped

1-2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
2 Tbsp almond butter
juice of 1 lime
10 drops alcohol free pure liquid stevia (SCD use 1 tsp honey)
2+ Tbsp water

The prep couldn't be easier. Carefully prepare your veggies: either with a mandoline or a knife. (I just used a knife). (*After you slice your red onion, place them in a small bowl and cover with ice water for 5 minutes. This will take away that sharp onion-y bite*) In a big bowl, combine your veggies and cilantro.

Next, make your sauce by whisking the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl. Add enough water to make it "drizzly."

Finally, toss your veggies with the dressing. Garnish with chopped cashews and extra cilantro. Serve chilled.

Oh my gosh, how good was this salad!?! The first thing that hits you is how beautiful it is. There's so much color going on on the plate! There's purple, red, orange, green -- it's so whimsical!!

Then the flavor - holy cow. Hold onto your hats, folks. This dressing is good enough to bathe in! Haha Seriously! It's tangy, sweet, gingery and nutty. So incredibly delicious.

And the crunchiness of the veggies is just phenomenal. Each veggie brings a specific flavor to the dish. The carrots and red peppers are sweet, the cabbage is a bit more savory and stringy like spaghetti. And then the avocado. OH the AVOCADO! It is rich and creamy, and adds this luxuriousness to the salad.

Finally, the cilantro provides the perfect fresh *pop* to punctuate the dish. :) Loved it. Loooooved iiiit!!

What's your favorite dish to bring to a cookout?

Want more GFHT?  You can now get my e-cookbook, The Best of GlutenFreeHappyTummy for only $2.99 on Amazon!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Hu Kitchen! An NYC Hotspot!

Holy cow, you guys. I may have just discovered the Holy Grail. And it's called Hu Kitchen.

I just had, hands down, the best restaurant experience -- bar none -- at Hu.

Hu is revolutionary dining. As in -- it's real food. I mean -- check the door: No Tricks. Just food. 

They're setting out to change the way we eat. To bring food back to nature -- the pre-industrial way of eating. . Unprocess it. They want to cook and eat food the way it is found in nature. Hallelujah! 

Their revolutionary food philosophy is summed up in their Eight Hu Pillars. And if you read them carefully, it's not so revolutionary after all --- it's how we're supposed to eat! They follow the same food philosophy I do!

The Hu Pillars: 1) Unprocess. 2) Count ingredients, not calories. 3) Pull plants, push animals (pull fruit and veg to the center of the plate) 4) Minimize grain. 5) Embrace fat (the good fat) 6) Get back to animal (feed animals what they're supposed to eat -- ie: grass -- not GMO pellets) 7) Sweeten wisely (no cane sugar/artificial sweeteners) 8) Eat clean (organic)

And the cuisine here is nearly ALL SCD-Friendly! Yep! You heard that correctly! Everything is gluten free, the majority is grain free and ALL is dairy free!! And if that's not amazing enough, there are a TON of vegan options --- even Body Ecology Diet options! -- and they use organic, non-GMO ingredients! 

I met the owner, Jordan, and he couldn't have been more awesome. He's the picture of good health. He explained that this is the way he eats. He feels so good eating this way that he had to share it with the world! And boy, am I glad he did.

It's a self-service place with a cool vibe. The decor reflects the food -- clean and earthy. Everything is made out of rustic wood and metal -- It's really modern and cool. Airy with a lot of open space.

There's a hot bar, cold bar, bowl station (and for all the BEDer's, there's a quinoa option!!), juice and smoothie bar, "mashable" station (think SCD/vegan Pinkberry/FroYo with all the fixins!!!), grain-free bakery, homemade packaged snack station, and an organic alcohol bar!!!! Pinch me, right?! It's straight from my dreams!!

I felt like a kid in a candy store. There were so many delicious options to choose from! I just couldn't decide. So I did what any good foodie would do: ask the chef what his fav is;)

I had what's called the Grandmaster Veg, a side of their notorious caramelized and grilled pineapple, and a SCD-Legal Hu roll.

The Grandmaster Veg was an incredible grain and dairy-free lasagna. Carrots, cabbage and eggplant were deliciously smothered in the best homemade marinara I've ever had.

But the best part of this lasagna goodness was the layer of cashew cream on top. It had the luxurious taste and consistency of melted cheese. It definitely made the dish.

I really enjoyed mopping up the marinara with their grain and dairy free Hu roll! This little nugget was wonderfully chewy, slightly nutty, and had a great crust.

And finally, I had their "famous" caramelized pineapple with cashew cream. Jordan said that these were a big seller, and boy, do I know why! It was downright sinful how good it was. Pineapple bites caramelized with cinnamon and served warm with a sweet cashew cream. It was sweet, juicy and had a spicy warmth from the cinnamon. It was like dessert! And oh my gosh, the cashew cream was amazing. I wanted to bathe in this stuff! haha 

So as you can probably tell, I'm genuinely freaking out about Hu Kitchen. But you've got to realize, I haven't been able to go to a restaurant and literally order anything off the menu as is in over a year. Perhaps you can relate. So you can imagine how tremendously excited I was to find a restaurant where EVERYTHING is "Happy Tummy Approved!"

I will definitely be back to try more of their fabulous cooking! 

So if you live within a 12 hour drive of NYC, then you should probably hop in the car right now and drive to Hu Kitchen! haha But no....seriously.

It's 78 Fifth Avenue. It's on 5th Ave between 13th and 14th street. See ya there ;)

On another note, I did a really "touristy" thing on Wednesday! I went to the live taping of Kelly and Michael!

I was front row, baby! So fun. 

Want more GFHT?  You can now get my e-cookbook, The Best of GlutenFreeHappyTummy for only $2.99 on Amazon!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Grain Free Veggie Burger Stacks! GF, BED, SCD & Paleo w/ Vegan Opt'n!

Hey Happy Tummies!

So as promised, I'm delivering to you an AWESOME new recipe! 

Grain Free Veggie Burger Stacks!

So for our last night in Wisconsin, we had a BBQ! My family enjoyed beer-boiled-brats (a classic in the Northwoods)

 and I had a marvelous Veggie Burger over Zucchini Ribbons! Holy Cow guys...hold onto your hats! These were FAAABULOUS! 

I topped it with a roasted beet, fresh tomato, and delicious pesto!

Most veggie burgers are made with lots of grain or beans. Well, on the Specific Carb Diet, grains and beans are not allowed. :/ Soooo I used Almond Meal instead!! And LOTS of veggies! The great thing about this recipe is that you can literally add in any veggies you want! It's a "clean out the fridge" recipe!

And they're Gluten Free, Vegan, Specific Carb Diet & Body Ecology Diet friendly & Paleo w/ a Vegan option!

Here's what you need: (makes 4 patties -- serves 1-2)

2 baby carrots
3 mushrooms (BED use shiitake)
1/2 red pepper
1 cup sugar snap peas
1/4 cup almond flour
2 egg whites (vegan option: 2 flax/chia eggs)
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 onion
1 garlic clove
1 Tbsp EVOO

1 beet (BED omit)

1 cup basil
2 Tbsp pine nuts
Juice 1 lemon
1 garlic clove
1 Tbsp EVOO
salt and pepper

1 zucchini - made into ribbons
1 tomato (BED omit - substitute roasted red pepper)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Scrub and dry your beet. Cut it into 1/4 inch rounds. Place the rounds on a tin-foil-line-olive-oil-sprayed baking sheet. Spritz them with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 50 minutes, flipping once halfway through.

Meanwhile, throw your carrots, mushrooms, red pepper, sugar snap peas, onion, garlic, and oregano into your food processor. Process until minced. (Don't let it get soupy). Place the chopped veggies into a clean kitchen towl (or several paper towels) and squeeze out as much liquid as you can. This is a very important step! Rinse out your food processor and set aside (you'll use it again in a minute).

Place your dry, minced veggies in a medium sized bowl. Combine with your egg-of-choice, oregano, olive oil, several cracks of black pepper, and almond flour. *Note: I did not add salt to the mix, as I didn't want the veggies to release any more liquid. Proceed with caution if you choose to:) .

Form patties out of 1/4 cup of the mixture and place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet. (Makes 4 small patties). Mist the tops with olive oil and bake for 35-45 minutes at 400 degrees, until golden brown. 

While they are baking, make your pesto by combining all the pesto in your food processor. Process until smooth. (You'll need to scrape the sides several times.) 

Also, create your zucchini noodles by taking a vegetable peeler and carefully peeling the zucchini to create ribbons. Also, slice a tomato with a serrated knife into 1/4 inch rounds. Finally, chiffanade some basil for garnish.

To assemble: Place your zucchini ribbons on a plate. Place your veggie burger patty on top. Top with a beet, a slice of tomato, and another beet, seasoning each layer with salt and pepper. Top with 2 Tbsp of pesto and garnish with basil and pine nuts. I also dotted the zucchini noodles with some of the extra pesto as a sauce.

Wow oh wow. What. A. Meal! This was so fun to eat! The veggie burger had a complex flavor from all the different veggies and was complimented by the nutty almond flour. I love when almond flour is baked in the oven - it becomes so toasty and really brings out the nuttiness! 

The beet gave it an earthy sweetness, and the tomato was wonderfully juicy and delicious! But my faaaavorite part was the pesto! It was bright and fresh and really livened up the dish! It created this luxurious sauce for both the burger and the zucchini noodles!

I passed around my plate for everyone to take a bite and they all LOVED it! They said the flavor was delicate and fresh!

This is a repeat meal for sure!

Coming up this week, I'm really excited to do a restaurant review for you guys! I found out about this great SCD/Paleo/Vegan restaurant from this guy at the health food store I shop at. I can't wait to try it out and let you know all about it! 

Want more GFHT?  You can now get my e-cookbook, The Best of GlutenFreeHappyTummy for only $2.99 on Amazon!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Acorn Squash Muffins GF, BED, SCD & Paleo!

Hey Guys!! I'm still riding the wave from the Fourth of July up our lake home in Wisconsin.
My sister-in-law and I were fedora sisters on the boat!

I'm back in NYC now -- this weekend its supposed to be mid-90s with high humidity. Uugh. So I'm taking a mental vacation back to the Northwoods where it was 70 degrees!

One tradition that has been in my family forever, is that every Fourth of July, everyone brings some sort of baked goods. My mom and aunt are famous for their Monster Cookies! They're amazing - peanut butter, coconut, raisins - they're SO good. (I've Happy Tummy - ified them in my e-cookbook, The Best of GlutenFreeHappyTummy (only $2.99 on Amazon!)) Unfortunately, they're not SCD friendly --  SO this year I decided to make Acorn Squash Muffins! They're Gluten Free, Body Ecology Diet & Specific Carb Diet Friendly and Paleo!

Sorry for the less-then-stellar photos...I baked them at night when the lighting wasn't great so they'd be fresh for everyone in the morning.

I didn't just make these for me. My dad and brother are both "low-carb-ers." They follow the Atkins diet, which is literally the Paleo "caveman diet!" It's funny - we're basically on the same diet -- no grains! (except I don't eat meat and they definitely do:) ) So I made these muffins so they could have a baked good to enjoy too! And let me tell you--they LOVED them!! My pops let me take a pic of his mid bite:)

Here's what you need: (Makes 13 muffins)

3 egg whites
1/4 c coconut milk
5 droppers-full of pure liquid stevia (SCD use 1/4 cup honey)
2 tsp alcohol free pure vanilla extract
2 cups acorn squash
1 cup almond flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp cloves
1/8 tsp nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prick your acorn squash (I used 2) all over with a fork and microwave them for about 7 minutes, flipping them with an oven mitt half-way through. Carefully take out the squash with an oven mitt and let them cool for several minutes. Then, cut them in half and scoop out the seeds and discard. Scoop the flesh of the squash, and put in the food processor. Process until smooth. Put the flesh into a clean kitchen towel (or several paper towels) and wring out any excess liquid.

In a medium sized bowl, combine your egg whites, stevia, coconut milk, and acorn squash with a wisk. It will be a very wet mixture.

In another small bowl, combine your dry ingredients. Stir together your dry with your wet. It will be a loose batter. Scoop 1/4 cup of the batter into your lined muffin tins.

Bake for 1 hour 35 minutes on the middle rack. I liked mine chilled in the fridge!

Nutrition Information: Serving size 1 muffin
65 Calories
4.1 grams of fat
4.9 g carbohydrates
1.8 g fiber
3.1 g net carbs
3 g protein

These little muffins were SO GOOD!! Oh my gosh, they were such a treat! They taste just like pumpkin bread! They're the perfect sweetness, spicy and warm. And they're moist and chewy!

There's a nutty undertone from the almond flour, which compliments the cinnamon and the earthy sweetness of the squash!

And the menfolk LOVED them. They also loved that each muffin had only 3 net carbs! They enjoyed one every morning with their coffee. I was so glad to be able to offer them something "bready" since that's not part of their everyday diet!

Although - let's be the end of the vacation, they treated themselves (and their wives) to a Brandy Alexander ice cream drink. Check this out -- have you ever SEEN an ice cream drink that big!?!? The photo doesn't do it justice -- it was served in an extra large margarita glass and was bigger than my head! Yes, you're seeing that correctly - it's piled about 9 inches ABOVE the rim! There were 2 PINTS of ice cream in each drink! They do it big in the Northwoods!

I treated myself that night to vodka with seltzer and muddled lemon and lime:) Haha not quite as decadent:)

I have a SUPER exciting recipe to share with you on Sunday! I can't wait!!! See you then!