The other day my sister and I decided that we wanted to make some rice pudding. We found a simple and pretty crohn’s friendly recipe at allrecipes, but I still wanted to play around with it. Because we had some people coming over for a taste test, we decided to make a double batch - one following the recipe and another that I modified. I replaced the regular milk with almond milk and left out the butter to make it more tummy friendly. I also added some extra vanilla extract and chocolate chips because chocolate chips make everything better. While both of the rice puddings ended up being delicious, the recipe I modified ended up being the winner. This recipe is naturally gluten free and nearly vegan.
makes 4 servings
- 3/4 cup uncooked rice
- 2 cups almond milk [any flavor will work]
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg, whisked
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- handful of chocolate chips [optional]
[for those gluten free: make sure to use pure vanilla extract as others may contain gluten]
[for those vegan: omit egg and replace with extra almond milk or a little vegetable oil]
- Place 1 1/2 cups water into saucepan on high heat. When water begins to boil, add rice. Turn heat down to low and cover the pan. Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally so rice doesn’t stick to the pan.
- If rice is sticking to the bottom of the saucepan, pour into a clean one. Add 1 1/2 cup almond milk, sugar and salt. Cook over medium heat until creamy, about 15 - 20 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup almond milk and whisked egg and cook about 2 minutes more. Mix the egg in quickly, so it blends into the rice mixture instead of cooking into pieces.
- Remove from heat and add vanilla and chocolate chips. [I couldn’t wait until the pudding cooled all the way to mix in the chocolate, so I put it in when it was still hot and it created ribbons of chocolate.]
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Banana Split with Coconut Milk Cream
In this intense heat everyone is currently having, it’s hard to motivate myself to cook something that involves standing over the stove or heating up the oven. Even though I love baking, I’ve had to call it quits until the weather isn’t as crazy. Just because I’m not using my oven right now doesn’t mean that I don’t want something sweet. I wanted to make a dessert that sounded delicious, but was simple - queue the banana split. It’s got a serving of fruit and it tastes absolutely delicious, with no dairy involved. I used coconut milk ice cream as well, but any of your favorite frozen treats will work [almond milk ice cream, rice milk ice cream, soy ice cream, etc]. The only part of this that takes a little planning is the sauce, but the hardest part about it is just having the patience to let it sit there for a little while. This recipe is super easy to make and is naturally gluten free and vegan.
BANANA SPLIT WITH COCONUT ICE CREAM
- 1 banana
- 2-3 scoops dairy free ice cream [I used chocolate coconut milk ice cream]
- 1 can coconut milk [I got Thai Kitchen Organic]
- 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
- sprinkle of cinnamon [optional]
- Place can of coconut milk in the fridge for at least 3-4 hours. The coconut cream will thicken and separate from the coconut water. Scoop out the cream and put in a bowl. Add vanilla extract and cinnamon, if you wish, and whip together. This will be more topping than you need for one banana split, but you can refrigerate what’s left.
- Cut banana and scoop ice cream into a bowl. Top with the Coconut Milk Cream.
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Chocolate Avocado Pudding
Some of you may be a little wary of trying this, but I advise you to not freak out over the avocado in a dessert. They actually go really well together as I found out when I made the chocolate avocado cake a little bit ago. This is a simple recipe with a short list of ingredients and has an even shorter list of steps. The pudding turns out very creamy and VERY chocolately, which I’m all about. I found this awesome recipe at Forgiving Martha. Because of the ingredients, it is naturally gluten free and vegan.
CHOCOLATE AVOCADO PUDDING
- 1 ripe avocado
- 1/4 cup coco powder
- 1/4 cup raw agave nectar
- 1/4 cup almond milk [i used vanilla, but any type is fine]
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
[for those gluten free: some vanilla extract may contain gluten]
- Peel avocado and cut into pieces.
- Place all ingredients into a food processor or blender and mix until smooth.
- Refrigerate if you like or just eat right away.
The other day, I was given the gift of a giant zucchini. It was grown in this woman’s yard and was the size of an infant. I knew that I had to make something with it as soon as possible. I love zucchini because you can make so many different things - you can grill it, stuff it, make bread out of it. I’ve made zucchini bread a couple times already, so wanted to make something a little different and cam across this recipe. They’re sweet enough to pass for cupcakes, but not so sweet that you feel like you just ate a handful of sugar. These can be made gluten free or vegan - details below.
makes 12 muffins
- 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 cup brown sugar, packed
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 medium / large zucchini, grated [about 1 1/2 cups]
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
[to make gluten free: use a gluten free flour; some vanilla extract may contain gluten]
[to make vegan: substitute vegetable / similar oil or applesauce for eggs]
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray nonstick cooking spray on the muffin tin.
- In a medium bowl, mix together flour, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
- In a large bowl, mix zucchini, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla. add dry mixture into zucchini mixture and mix until completely combined.
- Pour batter into tin and bake for 40 - 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then cool completely on a wire rack. Add frosting on top if you wish.
Mexican food is delicious, but often poses problems. Since a fair amount available in restaurants is either fried or contains a lot of beans, it can be hard to find Mexican food that I can eat. This is my grandma’s recipe and a staple at our home. Nobody has ever written it down before, it’s just been taught to one person by another. Because of this, most of these measurements are approximations, but are very close. This meal has meat in it, which makes it a well rounded main dish, but I’m sure could be made without to turn it into a side dish. We always eat this with corn, but it would go well with many side dishes. This recipe is naturally gluten free - details below.
- 1 lb of ground beef [ground turkey or tofu could work as well]
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 1/4 cup rice
- 2 1/2 cup water [water should be twice the rice]
- 6oz can of tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
[for those gluten free: Worcestershire sauce may be gluten free depending on the brand]
- Place a large pan on medium heat and add meat, garlic, salt and pepper. Break meat into small pieces as it’s cooking. Saute meat until cooked all the way through, about 6-8 minutes.
- Push meat to one side of the pan and pour chopped bell pepper and onion into the open space. Saute vegetables about 5 minutes, or until soft, turning every so often.
- Mix the meat and vegetables together, then push to the side again. Pour in rice in the open space and cook for 2-3 minutes. Mix the rice with the meat and vegetables and cook another 2-3 minutes.
- Add tomato paste, water, and Worcestershire sauce. Place the flat side of a spatula parallel to the pan and move in circles to mix together everything in the pan. Put a lid on, bring to a boil [about 4-5 minutes], then simmer. Stir every 3 - 4 minutes so that the rice doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
- If the rice is still not fully cooked after about 20 minutes, add another 1/4 cup of water [and some more garlic, salt & pepper] to help it cook down further.
Asparagus Bacon Hash
This meal is a one pan kind of dish, which makes it perfect for a simple breakfast, brunch, or dinner. It’s a fairly well rounded dish, with vegetables, carbs, and meat. Because it’s also very versatile, you can easily add in or change around different vegetables or seasonings. I made it for brunch and topped it with an egg, but it would also go well with tofu, chicken, etc. I came across a similar dish on Smitten Kitchen and just changed a couple things around. This recipe is also naturally gluten free, and if made without bacon is also vegan.
ASPARAGUS BACON HASH
- 6-8 pieces of bacon, sliced into small pieces
- 1 lb of Yukon gold potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
- 1 small yellow onion, diced small
- 1/2 lb asparagus, cut into 1 inch pieces
- extra virgin olive oil
- salt & pepper to taste
- Put bacon in a large pan over medium heat. Cook bacon until it’s crispy and dark in color. Remove bacon from the pan and drain on a paper towel. Leave the heat on and the bacon renderings in the pan. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil; if you skipped the bacon add 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Add the potatoes to the pan and season with salt and pepper. Let them sit for a couple minutes, to brown underneath. Flip them, then let them brown again for a couple minutes.
- When the potatoes are about 3/4 as crispy and browned as you want them, add in the onion.
- Cook for another 5 minutes or so or until the onion is soft and had color. Add the asparagus and cover the pan. Cook for 5-8 minutes or until cooked.
- Take off the lid then add the bacon back into the pan. Add additional seasoning if needed.
Almond Milk & Almond Ice Cream
So, this post doesn’t have any actual recipes in it. Instead I thought I’d share with you my recent experience with almond milk and almond milk based ice cream.
I’ve been thinking about switching over from standard nonfat milk to a milk substitute for a little while before this, but what had stopped me was the number of choices out there - almond milk, soy milk, rice milk, etc. I wasn’t sure which one I should choose. So I decided to try and look up some information about them.
Rice milk lacks in nutritional value in its natural state, but is often fortified with vitamins and minerals to make up for it. It contains no animal products or lactose.
Soy milk and almond milk have more in common, with only a few big differences between them. Both are gluten free, lactose free and vegan. The fat in soy milk is good for you and is made up of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. It is also a good source of Vitamin B, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, zinc, copper and manganese.
However, almond milk has a much higher content of vitamin E and manganese, which help with improvement of skin quality and protection against cancer. Studies have also shown some negative hormonal effects of soy milk; it may counteract the effects of chemo and tamoxifen therapy, which is important for those on 6MP or similar drugs to think about.
After looking through all this information, I decided to go with almond milk. I got some the other day and I’m happy with my decision. I chose vanilla flavored almond milk and I found a couple different almond milk based ice creams. The ice creams have a great texture [like regular ice cream!] and taste really good too. I haven’t tried to use the almond milk for baking yet, but that will be my next project.
Blueberry Lemon Cake
Recently, I was driving along the coast and came across a pick-your-own-blueberries farm. So, we had to stop and pick some because they were really cheap and amazingly delicious. We ended up with way more blueberries than a normal group of people can eat, so I had to find some delicious recipes that involved lots of blueberries. I came across a recipe for a cake in Jaime Oliver’s Italy that was all about these awesome berries, so I decided to try it out, and it was delicious. Whether you pick your own or get them from the store, the beginning of summer is the best time to get them. This recipe is nearly gluten free - see below for details.
BLUEBERRY LEMON CAKE
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3/4 cup milk
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- zest of 3 large lemons
- 3 cups blueberries
[for those gluten free: substitute gluten free flour for unbleached all-purpose flour; also vanilla extract may contain gluten]
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Put eggs and sugar into a large bowl and mix together thoroughly.
- Add extra virgin olive oil, vegetable oil, milk, and pure vanilla extract and mix well.
- Mix in flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Gently mix in lemon zest until fully blended. Set aside for 10 minutes to allow the flour to absorb the liquid.
- Stir about a third of the blueberries into the batter and pour into a cake pan coated with vegetable spray.
- Bake for 15 minutes, then remove it and place the rest of the blueberries on top. Gently push the berries into the batter, then cook for 35 - 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Let cool for 10 minutes then enjoy!