Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Two Guests and a Pot Full of Chili

We raise chickens around here.  We try to avoid roosters.  In the past six years raising fifty or so chickens, we have only ended up with one rooster by mistake.  Just one.  Until this week.   These two just showed up out of the blue.

We have checked with neighbors, but no one seems to be missing these two boys.  Apparently, they think this is home.  They hang out all day around here and don't seem to be in a hurry to leave.  They are beautiful to look at and I like seeing them outside the window.  I even like hearing them crow.  I guess they can stay...for awhile.  As long as they leave the ladies alone!

So...on to the recipe. 

Today was one of those days.  Snowy.  Rainy.  Cold.  Nothing beats homemade soup and bread on one of those days.  So chili and cornbread hit the spot.

I use the Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free Cornbread Mix for my cornbread.  I use almond milk instead of regular milk and olive oil instead of butter to make it dairy free.  It is yummy!  It is definitely a family favorite. 


2 onions chopped
8 cloves of garlic minced
2 lbs hamburger
2 cans of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups of frozen corn
1 can tomato paste
1 large can (29 oz) tomato puree
1 can of diced tomatoes
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
6 tsp Mrs Dash Fiesta Lime (you may want to adjust this to taste)
2 Tbsp dark brown sugar

In a large pot, brown hamburger over medium heat.  Add garlic and onions and cook til translucent.  Add salt and pepper.  Mix tomato paste into the hamburger mixture.  Add beans, corn, tomatoes, and tomato puree.  Mix together.  Add Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime seasoning to taste.  Add enough water to your desired thickness.  Mix in brown sugar.

Bring chili to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for an hour.

This was delicious.  Using the Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime seasoning gave the chili such an amazing blend of flavors.  The addition of the brown sugar was a last minute thought that turned out to be absolutely wonderful.  It mellowed the tomato taste and really added a rich note to the chili.

I also used tomatoes that I had diced and froze from my garden this past summer instead of canned tomatoes.  This is something that is so easy to do and definitely worth while. When the tomatoes are on in full force during the summer months I freeze the abundance for that fresh garden flavor in the winter.  I freeze cherry tomatoes whole and then bag them in quart size bags.  They are great to add to soups.  For diced tomatoes, I dice 1 3/4 cups of tomatoes and pour all the contents into a quart size bag.  This is equivalent to a can of diced tomatoes.

This recipe made 14 servings.  I freeze the leftovers in individual serving size bowls to be used for lunches later on in the month. 

I hope you enjoy!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Best GF DF Donuts EVER!!!

Cinnamon has been making gluten-free donuts for our parish for the past year and half.  It is quite the commitment each Saturday.  I am sure there are Saturdays that she would rather spend the three hours it takes, doing something else, but she knows it makes a difference.  It allows people a chance for fellowship and community over a simple offering of coffee and donuts.  It makes a difference for a segment of society that usually has to bypass such offerings.  It is a little thing, but it does make a big difference to those of us who can't eat gluten. 

 A few weeks ago when two little girls approached her and asked her if she made the donuts, she smiled and said yes.  They replied, "Thank you for making the donuts.  We can't eat the other kind.  We are gluten intolerant too!"  Cinnamon just smiled, but later as we were leaving church she slid her arm around my waist and said in her soft voice, "That is why I make donuts each week." 

She has made a variety of donuts.  Double chocolate topped with coconut, apple-cinnamon, plain topped with chocolate icing and sprinkles, maple flavored, lemon glazed, chocolate raspberry donuts to name a few.  Lately, she has begun to make her own recipes.  A few weeks ago she developed the best donut to date:  Vanilla Glazed Chocolate Chip Donuts!

I admit that after church I will eat a donut or two.  Yes.  Two.  They are small!  I have enjoyed all her baking, but these new donuts are in another category!  The three or four category.  The "sneak another" category.  I don't know what it is.  It is the perfect storm of ingredients and I have trouble walking past the kitchen without sampling.  That is not like me, but they are that good.  The best part: not only are they gluten-free, they are dairy free too!

And bless her heart, she is allowing me to share them with you!!!

Vanilla Glazed Chocolate Chip Donuts:

2 cups Gluten Free Mama Almond Flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp xanthan gum
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
8 Tbsp Earth Balance (I use the soy free kind)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1/2 cup coconut milk beverage like So Delicious or Trader Joe's
1/2 cup dairy free mini chocolate chips

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside.

In an electric mixer bowl, combine butter, sugar, and brown sugar.  Mix together.  Scrape down sides of the bowl.  Add eggs, vanilla, and coconut milk.  Mix together.  Mix in dry ingredients.  Add chocolate chips and stir.

We make these with this mini donut maker.  Follow the "baking" instructions according to the manufacturer.


1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3/4 tsp vanilla
3 Tbsp coconut milk beverage

Stir all ingredients together until combined.  Dip donuts into glaze and then let sit on a plate to dry.

Enjoy one or two.....or maybe three..... with a steaming cup of coffee or tea!  Thanks, Cinnamon!  They are delicious!!!
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