April 10, 2013

Southwest American Chop Suey

Filed under: dinner, freezer friendly, gluten-free, lunch — Tags: , — glutenfreebymarriage @ 12:38

Southwest style American Chop Suey

Improvisation can be a good thing

Sometimes, no matter how organized you think you are, not everything gets on the shopping list.

Case in point, the plan was to make American Chop Suey for Mr. GF’s lunches and a double batch of spaghetti so that I could freeze half for later, but somehow I only bought enough tomatoes for the spaghetti.

I really didn’t want to go back to the store for one can of tomatoes so I looked in the cupboard for something I could substitute, but the only thing I saw was one lone jar of emergency salsa.  Why not?

Southwest American Chop Suey


Makes about 5 2-cup servings

  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 medium green pepper, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 28-ounce can whole tomatoes, hand crushed
  • 1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 24-ounce jar Southwest Style Salsa
  • 1 – 2 tablespoons brown sugar*
  • 3 cups uncooked brown rice penne pasta (about 6 servings)
  • chile powder
  • ground cumin
  • oregano
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder

*I usually add a bit of brown sugar to help cut the acidity when I make a dish with a lot of tomatoes.


  1. Bring a pot of water to boil, cook pasta according to package directions.
  2. Brown ground turkey in a large pan, add onions, garlic and green peppers cooking until onions are translucent.

    Note: I used 94% lean ground turkey because it was on sale.  If you are using beef or meat with a higher fat content you may need to drain excess grease from the pan.

  3. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, salsa, brown sugar and spices.
  4. Cook over medium heat until most of the liquid is evaporated.  (Between the canned tomatoes, salsa and tomato sauce there is a lot of liquid, it took me about 45 minutes to cook it down to the point where it was still moist but not completely soupy.)
  5. Add cooked pasta and stir until well blended.

This turned out really well.  Very spicy (I added a lot of chile powder) with a depth of flavor.   I think the salsa with the corn and black beans took this cafeteria staple to a new level and I will definitely make it again.

If you leave out the pasta, this would be a nice freezer friendly meal.


August 28, 2012

What’s in the freezer?

Filed under: freezer friendly, my kitchen, Uncategorized — Tags: , — glutenfreebymarriage @ 18:30

simple solution to knowing what's in the freezer - write the contents on the door

Can You Say Giant Whiteboard?

No matter how organized I think I am I never seem to know what is in the freezer.  I’ve tried printed lists, spreadsheets, databases and pretty much every organizational tool known to man, but nothing works.  The problem is that I am the only one who takes the time to cross things off when I take them.  I’m told that it’s a pain, too much work or simply too difficult to remember.

Not any more.

The new system is in your face, can’t possibly miss it, stupid easy and all it took was a little painter’s tape, a whiteboard marker and a rag.

Say goodbye to the blank white door and hello to the giant whiteboard.

Now we have an easy to read, chronological list of what’s in the freezer that can’t possibly be missed.

It still relies on me writing all the additions, but there are no excuses for anyone else not to erase something when they take it from the freezer.

July 2, 2012

EasyTropical Fruit Sorbet

Filed under: dairy free, dessert, freezer friendly, fruit, sorbet, Uncategorized — glutenfreebymarriage @ 15:17

quick & easy tropical fruit sorbet

It’s hot and when it’s hot I get cranky.  Real cranky.  The kind of cranky that only a delicious icy cold treat will cure.  Sadly,  Mr. GF is also Mr. Lactose Intolerant so that minimizes our ice cream options.  Yes, he could take a handful of lactase pills with every bite, but that gets expensive and it’s just kind of weird.  (Can you imagine having to take three or four pills just to eat a half-cup of ice cream?)  Not to worry, I have a better option.  Something that is not only dairy and gluten free, but is inexpensive, easy to make, requires no cooking and tastes unbelievably decadent.  (cue the music)

Easy Tropical Fruit Sorbet

makes 6 1/2 cup servings


  • 2 15.25 oz cans Tropical Fruit in Passion Fruit Juice


  1. Open cans and transfer contents to freezer safe bowl.
  2. Put bowl in freezer until fruit is hard, but not completely frozen.  It will be solid but just slushy enough that you can poke a spoon (or your finger) through the surface.  Freezer time varies.  My kitchen freezer would take an entire day, but my basement freezer would be about an hour.
  3. Using an immersion blender puree the semi-frozen fruit mixture until all fruit is pureed.   If you don’t have an immersion blender you can divide up the fruit and put it in a regular blender.  You will need to do it in batches to get an even blend and it needs to be done as quickly as possible so that the fruit doesn’t thaw before you are done.
  4. Transfer your semi-frozen fruit puree to serving dishes and return to freezer for about an hour.  (less if you prefer is slushy)

Notes: You can use any fruit, fresh, can or frozen.  Canned fruit cocktail doesn’t work so good, but pretty much anything else in a fruit juice, not a heavy syrup, will be fine.  Just remember that if you are using fresh or frozen you will need to also freeze some liquid with it.

February 4, 2012

Killer Brownies (now gluten free!)

Filed under: baking, brownies, freezer friendly, gluten-free — glutenfreebymarriage @ 17:23

I can't believe we actually ate all the brownies

Rich and thick, fudgey and to die for, my all time favorite decadent baked good has to be the Killer Brownie. (notice the empty dish above…)

With two sticks of butter, three eggs and two cups of sugar these artery clogging, waistline expanding chocolate treasures are so addictive that I only make them once a year, twice if someone (not my husband) begs.

Thanks to Taitertot’s super fabulous gluten free quick bread flour blend this decadent favorite is now gluten free.

Killer Brownies (now gluten free!)


  • 1 half pound butter, melted
  • 1 1/4 cups gluten free quick bread flour mix (see below)
  • 3/4 cup cocoa (dutch blend if you can find it)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350o
  2. Combine flour, cocoa and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.  It’s really important to break up any clumps and get the ingredients as well blended as possible.  (no streaks)
  3. In a separate bowl combine the melted butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla.
  4. Add flour/cocoa mixture to the butter.  Mix until well blended.
  5. Spread the batter into a greased 9″ X 13″ pan, bake for 30 minutes or until brownies start to pull away from the sides

Just like the sugar cookies, these brownies freeze really well.  If you can find a way to do it surreptitiously, I strongly recommend letting the brownies cool and freezing half.  I don’t know what the science is behind it, but freezing intensifies the flavor and makes the texture even more fudgey.

*Bake at your own risk: The writer accepts no responsibility for weight gain, enhanced chocolate cravings, or the packs of salivating friends, family, neighbors and co-workers who start beating on your door after tasting your delicious brownies..

Taitertot’s Gluten Free Quick Bread Mix

  • 1 1/2 cups white rice flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sorghum flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca starch
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons xanthan gum

I found this super fabulous quick bread blend on but the author doesn’t list a blog in their bio  so I can’t provide a link to anything except the original pumpkin bread recipe.  (scroll to the bottom of the recipe for the flour blend) I did send an email, so if I hear back I will definitely add a link to Taitertot’s blog or other recipes.

December 30, 2011

Pat’s Yummy Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies

Filed under: baking, cookies, freezer friendly, gluten-free — glutenfreebymarriage @ 15:14

Have you seen the price of gluten-free cookies in the store?   It’s crazy!  Four, five even six dollars for a small package of cookies.  I can’t say that I’ve ever tried them, but from what I read online, many of the packaged options are either bland or have a strange texture and just don’t stack up to the gluten filled cookies everybody else enjoys.

What if I told you that I have a super fantastic recipe for gluten-free sugar cookies?  What if I promised that they are very easy to make and taste so close to regular all-purpose flour sugar cookies that you will not taste a difference?  Seriously!  They look and taste the same!

GF Sugar Cookies

Pat’s Yummy Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies

(makes about 4 dozen)


  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour
  • 1/4 cup potato starch (sometimes called potato starch flour)
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons xanthan gum
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • colored sugar for decoration


cookie sheets with cookie scoop and tea strainer

  1. Preheat oven to 375o and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.  (Between the sticky dough and melted sugar the parchment paper is well worth the cost when it comes time to clean the pans.)
  2. Thoroughly mix all dry ingredients, brown rice flour through salt, in a medium bowl and set aside.  Make sure to mix well so there are no streaks and you can’t tell where one flour ends and the next begins.
  3. In another bowl combine the shortening, sugar, eggs and vanilla until combined.  Add flour mixture and stir until well blended.Don't worry if the dough seems dry, it will get wetter once you've incorporated all the ingredients  Don’t worry if the dough seems really dry, just keep mixing and it will get wetter once the ingredients are completely combined.
  4. Using a small cookie dough scoop or a tablespoon, drop dough onto prepared cookie sheets.
  5. Wet the palm of your hand or a small glass and press the cookie dough so that it is flat.  (The dough is very sticky so you might need to re-wet your hand or glass a few times.)
  6. Once the dough is flattened, sprinkle colored sugar over the tops.  (I use a small tea strainer for this, but you could use a spoon if you don’t have one.)adding colored sugar to the cookies
  7. Put cookies in oven and bake for 8 – 10 minutes at 375o until the edges are starting to brown.
  8. Remove from oven and set aside for a few minutes until cool enough to handle.  (If you try to pick them up too soon they will crumble and break.) Once the cookies are cool start eating.


TIP: This dough freezes well so if you want to enforce portion control, prepare the cookies up to step 7 (last step before baking) and freeze. It’s really handy to have cookie dough on hand and a special treat for you and your gluten-free loved one to be able to pop three or four cookies in the oven when they want a snack. You don’t even need to thaw the dough, just preheat the oven to 375o then bake for 8 – 10 minutes.

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do.


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