Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Monday, February 23, 2015

Ledo's Pizza:


Valentine's Day has always been my dad's holiday...he gets everyone a card and either a gift for each of us, or something big for everyone. For as long as I can remember, he has done this!
This year, he decided to skip the treats and gifts, and order pizza!!
Now, that might sound pretty lame to most people, but I only ever remember our family ordering pizza one time in my life! It's expensive for a family our size, and just something we never did. After we went gluten-free, it was pretty impossible. We make homemade pizza about once a week, but ordering pizza is just a BIG deal for us!!!! (It's okay, you can laugh!)!!
We have a local pizza shop that has gluten-free pizza, so that's were we ordered from. I was so excited to try it! I was afraid to get my hopes up, though, in case it turned out to be disgusting!
But I had nothing to worry about!!!
It was SOOO good!!! All of my gluten-free family members LOVED it!
Unlike many other places that serve gluten-free pizza, you can choose whatever toppings you want!
We went with cheese and pepperoni, and ham and pineapple this time, but I can't wait to try a Supreme!
It's a thin crust pizza, which is my favorite! They say it's a personal size. There are 4 of us who eat gluten-free, so we ordered 3 pizzas. We all ate, and had enough leftover for 2 more people to eat the rest the next day, so I think you would have to be REALLY hungry to eat the whole thing by yourself!

Since we were pretty impressed by it, I wanted to share all the info with you!
Turns out it's a chain restaurant, and they have quite a few locations here in the East!



They have many other menu items apart from pizza (of course many of them are not gluten-free).
You can check out the menu here:

About their Gluten-Free Pizza


Locations:

I think we all would agree that this was just about the BEST Valentine's Day EVER!!!!


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Monday, February 16, 2015

Creamy Breakfast Casserole:

I love a breakfast casserole. Especially ones like this one! Throw it all together the night before, and pop it in the oven the next morning!
My dad's cousin made this for us when we were at her house one weekend. It's SO yummy! If you don't like cottage cheese, don't worry, because you can't even taste it and you have no idea it's even in there. It's just the key ingredient in making the casserole so creamy and moist!
I hope you give it a try! 



3 cups frozen Hashbrowns
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 pound ground Sausage, browned and drained
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
7 eggs
1&1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 (16 oz.) container small curd Cottage Cheese

Prepare a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Layer the ingredients in this order:
1. Hash-browns
2. Melted butter
3. Sausage
4. Onions

In a medium bowl, beat eggs with a hand mixer until light and fluffy. Stir in shredded cheese and cottage cheese until well combined. Pour mixture over the potato and sausage layers. 
Cover with a lid or plastic wrap, and refrigerate over night.
Remove from the fridge, and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Bake, covered with foil, for 30 minutes. Uncover, and bake 30 minutes more, until knife inserted in the center comes out clean. 
Let stand for 5-10 minutes.
Serve!!!!
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Notes for myself:
-If baking in the top oven, reduce temperature to 350 degrees

Monday, February 9, 2015

Pudding Sugar Cookies with Quick and Easy Frosting:

Sugar cookies are actually a hard thing to make gluten-free. Rolling them out, cutting them out...then when you bake them, they always spread WAY out, for some reason. But you just can't beat the taste of a good sugar cookie, with good sugar-cookie-frosting! For any holiday or special occasion!
So, I stumbled across this recipe, and my sister decided to give it a try. She found the frosting recipe, and we were SO excited about the final product! They tasted SO yummy!! No, they aren't in any cute shapes, but at least we still get the same great taste, and I thought they looked really pretty!
If you love sugar cookies, then you'll love this recipe!


1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sugar
1 c. confectioners' sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 package (3.4 oz) vanilla instant pudding mix
4 c. all-purpose flour
3 tsp. xanthan gum
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. baking soda


Frosting:

3 & 3/4 cup powder sugar
6 tablespoons milk
6 tablespoons light corn syrup
food coloring

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, oil, and sugars for 4-5 minutes. Beat in eggs, vanilla, and dry pudding mix. Combine the flour, xanthan gum, cream of tartar, and baking soda; gradually add to creamed mixture. Using a tablespoon size cookie scoop, drop dough 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets. Slightly flatten with a glass dipped in sugar. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until very, very lightly brown around the edges. Be careful to not over bake these. Immediately remove to wire racks. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

Make the frosting by whisking together the sugar and milk. Add the corn syrup and mix until well combined. Add whatever  food coloring you want, until desired color is reached. Gently spread onto cookies. Garnish with sprinkles or colored sugar, if desired. Let stand until set. Store in an airtight container, between layers of wax paper.

Note:
-These freeze super-duper well!

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Monday, February 2, 2015

2 Ingredient Italian Chicken:

This chicken is so easy, so moist and so delicious! It may very well be one of my favorite ways to have chicken! 
We love it with a big toss salad, but I'm sure there's a ton of other ways to eat it too!
Let me know how you serve it!!


4-5 medium size boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thawed
1 (16 oz.) bottle Zesty Italian Dressing

Place chicken in a crockpot. Pour the dressing all over. Cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours (low for 5-6 hours) or until it easily shreds with a fork. Shred it all up and mix it well with all the juices in the crock-pot. This helps keep it all super moist. Serve it over a salad or any way you choose!

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Monday, January 26, 2015

Pizza Hut and Udi's:



I don't know how I missed this process, but I just found out that Pizza Hut is partnering with
 to bring you a gluten-free pizza that you can now order at Pizza Hut!!!

I just received the e-mail that it was launched today!
I'm pretty excited about this!! I love how more and more places are trying to be so accommodating to gluten-free eaters!!! 
Here is the link to Pizza Hut, were you can find the locations (over 2,000) that are offering the gluten-free pizza!!


Unfortunately, the nearest one to me is about 30 minutes away, so I have not been able to try one yet. I hope to soon, but in the mean time, if anyone else tries one, PLEASE leave me a comment or e-mail me and let me know what you think!!!



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Thick and Creamy Broccoli Cheese Soup:

Anyone who knows me for very long, probably knows that my very favorite season is

WINTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I just love the cold, the snow, the fact that Christmas is during the winter, sweaters and boots and just anything "wintery"! 
It never lasts long enough for me!
Ever since I was little, people have been telling me that I will of course grow out of liking winter when I'm older. So far, it has only grown with me more and more every year (grown bigger than me, might be more like it, since I've not really grown for about 10 years)!

Anyway, whether you love or hate winter, you would have to admit that a big bowl of soup and a nice muffin, on a cold winter night, is a really great thing!
So no matter what your relationship with winter is (or isn't),
I hope you will definitely give this SUPER easy, SUPER yummy broccoli soup a try!! Warm, creamy and cheesy, it's just plain GOOD!!!!




1 small onion, finely diced butter
6 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 pinch of nutmeg
dash of pepper
2 & 2/3 cups milk
2 cups chicken broth
6 cups broccoli, cut into bite sized pieces
2cups cubed or shredded Velveeta cheese

Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onions. Cook and stir for 1-2 minutes to soften the onion. Whisk in the cornstarch, nutmeg and pepper until smooth. Stir in the milk and chicken broth and mix until well combined. Add broccoli. Cover the pan and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 30-40 minutes, or until broccoli is tender (the smaller you cut the broccoli, the faster it will cook). Turn the heat back up to medium and add the cheese. Cook and stir until thoroughly melted.
Serve!

Note:
-If you prefer a broccoli soup with more veggies in it, then click HERE to check out my recipe for Broccoli Chowder.
-Check out my RECIPE INDEX for some great muffins or bread to serve with this!



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Monday, January 19, 2015

Grandma's Pineapple Cookies:

When my older brother and sister were younger, they always got to go over to Grandma Wagner's house and help make Christmas cookies every year. They would spend the whole day and they always had a blast! Grandma told me that I could start coming when I turned 10 and I couldn't wait!! Sadly, Pappy passed away and Grandma started having some health problems, which resulted in her moving to South Carolina to live with her daughter, all the year I turned 9. The tradition ended and I never got to experience it, but thankfully Grandma at least had recipes for most of her best Christmas cookies, so at least we can still make them!
These cookies are just one of SO many that she used to make! I always loved them, because they are so moist and just sweet enough, but not overly sweet. Grandma always made yellow, green, red, and white frosting, so that's what we do when we make them - every year, always with Grandma on our minds!
I hope you try them out!


1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
1 cup shortening
2 eggs
1 & 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 can crushed pineapple, well drained reserving the juice
4 cups flour
2 tsp. xanthan gum
1/2 tsp. salt
1 & 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder

Frosting:
1 & 1/3 cup powder sugar
1-2 tablespoons reserved pineapple juice
food coloring

Cream together the sugars, shortening and eggs in a large mixing bowl.
Add vanilla and pineapple. Mix for just a couple of seconds, and add in dry ingredients.Mix well. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto greased cookies sheets.
Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until just very light golden brown.
Let cool completely before icing them.
Mix together the icing ingredients. Start with 1 tablespoon of pineapple juice, and add additional amounts to reach desired consistency. You want it to be thin enough to spread, but not too thin that will run off the cookie. Add food coloring of your choice to reach desired color. You may need to mix up multiple batches of frosting to frost all the cookies, but only mix up one at a time. The icing hardens really fast, so it will dry up on you, if you don't use it quickly.
Let stand until frosting is set. Store in an airtight container, between layers of wax paper.
These can stand on the counter top for several days, or we like to freeze them, and pull out however many we want, when we need them!

Note:
-This makes several dozen cookies! I forgot to count, but I'd say 4-6 dozen, depending on how large you make them. We use a 1-inch cookie scoop.
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Monday, January 12, 2015

Pumpkin Pie:

I don't know if there is anything that screams "Christmas" to me, more than Christmas trees and pumpkin pie! I happen to love both. I wish that I was a more organized person, and had shared this before Christmas, but the truth is, life continues on, no matter how organized you are...or aren't. But if you're like us, and still have the Christmas tree up, then it's still the Christmas season, so it all works out!! The other options are 1. make it anyways, because it's good, and 2. pin and try it out next fall, I guess!! Whatever works!

That being said, I hope you will enjoy the host of other Christmas recipes that will be coming out over the next several weeks! Hey, it's never too early to plan for next Christmas, right?
(Only 347 days to go, by the way!!!)

Now, back to the recipe!
Sometimes making a pie can be time consuming, and making one gluten-free can seem just about impossible sometimes! But today, I have a few tricks and shortcuts to share with you, so you can whip up a couple of these in no time at all!! This recipe makes 2 pies.
I hope you try it out!!


Crust:
3/4 cup butter, cubed and very cold
3/4 cup shortening, chilled until very cold
3 cups flour
1 tblsp. xanthan gum
1 tsp. salt
1 egg
1 tblsp. vinegar
3-5 tblsp. ice cold water

Filling:
2 (30oz.) cans Libby's Pumpkin pie mix
1 & 1/3 cup Evaporated milk
4 eggs

For the crust, place flour, xanthan gum and salt in a food processor. Add butter and shortening. Pulse until mixture resembles course crumbs. Add egg, vinegar and 3 tablespoons water. Pulse until mixture comes together (you might need to run a spatula around the edges of the bowl, occasionally). Add more water, one tablespoon at a time, if needed, until mixture sticks together well, but you don't want it to be too sticky. 
Divide dough between 2, 9-inch deep-dish pie plates that have been coated with cooking spray. Wash your hands in very cold water, then pat dry. This way your hands are nice and cold and it will be easier to press out the dough. Press evenly into the bottom and up the sides of the pie plate. Flute the edges. Place in the freezer and chill just until firm (you can do this in the fridge, but the freezer is faster!).
Meanwhile, mix together filling ingredients with a whisk or hand-mixer. 
Once crust is chilled, pour the filling evenly between the two crusts.
Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake 50-60 minutes longer, or until knife inserted in the center of the pie, comes out clean and the crust is golden brown.
Cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap and chill until ready to serve!

Note:
-It's super important that the butter and shortening are very, very cold.

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Wednesday, January 7, 2015

UPDATE:


Just made some new and improved changes to my



If you have already made it, I changed a few things to make it even easier now!
If you haven't tried this recipe yet, I hope you will now!!
It's one of my top 5 favorite recipes ever!


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