Saturday, July 24, 2010

Olive Garden Eat Your Heart Out!

So, I have yet to try any recipes from my new book. I did go grocery shopping and while I got tons of great, tasty stuff, (I went when I was hungry...yummy for the tummy, but not so happy for the bank account) I didn't get anything that I needed for ANY of the new recipes.

Anyhoo, I had been craving chicken alfredo for quite some time. I don't think I've had that meal since I was living in Tucson and went to Macaroni Grill, ate delicious chicken alfredo and subsequently became violently ill afterward. I've stayed away from it since. I don't think I need to tell you why.

A couple of weeks ago, Brad was camping with the dogs and I was alone for a couple days. Really alone. It's different when there aren't even any animals to babble to. I really enjoyed it for the first couple of days, but then I got lonely, bored and inventive! Alfredo sauce? Who did I think I was? I don't even remotely know how to make such a luxurious sauce much less one without a ton of gut-wrenching dairy! But I popped on some tunes, poured myself a glass of wine and rolled up my sleeves. I browsed a few recipes online. The dairy-free, vegan sauces sounded horrid and the traditional ones made my stomach turn. So this is what I did:

1/4 c. Earth Balance
1 can coconut milk (in loo of the heavy cream)
4-5 baby bella mushrooms
2 chicken breasts
1 1/4 c. shredded cheddar style goat cheese from TJs
8 leaves fresh basil (from my herb garden yay!)
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cut chicken into bite size pieces and cook in a little olive oil. Melt earth balance and saute the mushrooms and half of the basil. Add coconut milk and bring to a boil. Turn down to low heat, add chicken, S&P and rest of basil. Slowly stir in goat cheese. I also added a dash of xanthan gum because I was afraid it wouldn't thicken, but in retrospect, I don't think that was necessary. Let simmer on low heat and sauce will thicken nicely on it's own. Add your GF noodles to the water you've so thoughtfully already started boiling!

One word: YUM! It was divine! It was heavenly! It was rich and creamy! It did NOT cause a night bowing to the porcelain god! I am grateful for goats! Take that cows!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Petit Fours

Oh hell, yeah. I made these.

These were made with a layer of strawberry cake, a layer of strawberry butter cream, a layer of chocolate cake and then covered with chocolate icing. The piping was done with a simple buttercream and the shimmery stuff is edible shimmer powder I got from Michael's.

I'm making them again for a friend's daughter's birthday party and have altered the recipe a bit. I felt the strawberry cake tasted too "GF" and the chocolate cake was not chocolatey enough. For the next round I adjusted the chocolate genoise recipe, subbing 2 tbl of almond meal for 2 of sorghum and 2 tbl of cocoa powder for 2 of the starches. The result was just what I was looking for. No one would suspect it was GF. I haven't done the strawberry yet, but I think I will adjust the plain genoise recipe by subbing in some almond meal, some strawberry jello and maybe some puree, but I hesitate because of the liquid content. Tricky business.