Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Going Gluten Free On Ya!

The January 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Lauren of Celiac Teen. Lauren chose Gluten-Free Graham Wafers and Nanaimo Bars as the challenge for the month. The sources she based her recipe on are 101 Cookbooks and

I was excited to see that Lauren was the host of the January challenge as I have been researching on gluten/wheat free recipes. Lauren has celiac's disease. Celiac disease is when the lining of the small intestine is damaged from eating gluten and other proteins found in wheat, barley, rye, and possibly oats.

Doing research about celiac disease and cooking gluten/wheat free has definitely opened my mind and I sympathize with anyone who has a food allergy.Being conscience about what you eat, reading labels, and asking the restaurant on how the food is made to make sure you can consume it.
I was excited to see that this month's challenge was gluten free graham crackers and nanaimo bars. Nanaimo bars. What's a nanaimo bar? The Nanaimo bar is a dessert of Canadian origin popular across North America. A type of chocolate no-bake square, it is named after the West-Coast city of Nanaimo, British Columbia.
Here is my attempt at gluten free graham crackers. One thing I learned is that baking gluten free is a science. Trying to get a bunch of different flours mixed together to produce what you what is a challenge. I was expecting my dough to be denser, but my dough was really sticky. I was so worried that it wouldn't bake. In the end, it did come out. It was pretty delicious!

Take a look at those fudgy bars! I didn't get an opportunity to taste them, but my whole office was very excited to have a sugary treat for the Monday blues. People were asking for them again.

Thanks Lauren for the wonderful baking challenge!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Did the chicken cross the road?

The January 2010 DC challenge was hosted by Cuppy of Cuppylicious and she chose a delicious Thai-inspired recipe for Pork Satay from the book 1000 Recipes by Martha Day.

Yes, I know the cooking challenge is suppose to be pork satay, but I didn't have any pork available. So I opted for chicken and beef. I made this dish about three weeks ago and let me tell you, the weather was yucky. 30 degrees and taking the dog out for a walk required the dog to wear a sweater. I know I know, I am a wussy Californian who whines when its 50 degrees. Where in other parts of the world there's many inches of snow. I can't help it, I am familar with constant 60 degree weather. In California, there are no 4 seasons.

So with 30 degree weather, there was no way I was taking these satay buddies to the outdoor bbq grill. So I found the next best thing. Don't laugh. I pulled this out...

Isn't she a beaut? This Foreman grill goes back to my college days. My trusty friend whose never met a burger patty she couldn't handle.

I wish my blog was a scratch and sniff. At least in this photo, you can see the meat cooking. Yum!

Chicken on the left and beef to your right. Wipe that drool off your face now.
A little something for you no carb folks. Satay chicken lettuce wrap with cucumbers and onions.

Of course, I can't leave you without a picture of satay accompanied with brown rice.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Happy Birthday Billy!

My old ball and chain had a birthday this month. He turned the big 3-0. We celebrated the big day with a evening with friends, bowling, food, beer, and of course birthday cake. Not just any birthday cake.

Can you guess what it is? Give up? It's a piece of steak. Tee hee...a beefcake. LOL. Wait! Doesn't it remind you of something else?

It's the Duplo (lego) character. Minus the ears. :)

Happy birthday husband! I hope you enjoyed your special day!