Friday, October 21, 2011

All American Dinner

To wrap up our week of state food, and to catch up to all the states Skipper has learned about so far, here is our American Dinner. It is a longer post because it was the most elaborate of the meals.

Confession: I could have put the food in pretty dishes for nicer pictures, but I didn't want to dirty up any more dishes so I left everything right in the pans, which is the norm! ;)

Pot Roast

The smells of this as it was cooking was heavenly. To tell truth, I am not much of a pot roast girl, but the gravy that this made was absolutely divine, and definitely made the roast. Skipper gobbled this up, and this recipe will be going into my notebook!

  • 1/2 c. gluten-free flour (use up any mix or just plain rice flour is fine)
  • black pepper to taste
  • 3 1/2 lbs. rump roast
  • 1/4 c. Earth Balance soy/dairy-free margarine
  • 0.5 oz dry onion soup mix (**see my alternative)
  • 1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup (**see my alternative)
  • 1/2 c. white wine
Preheat oven to 325. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and black pepper. Melt the butter in a large pot over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, dredge the roast in the flour and cover evenly. Shake off excess and add to pan to sear each side. Place in a roasting pan.

In a small bowl, combine the soup mix, mushroom soup, and white wine. Pour over roast. Cover and bake for at least 3 hours (I did 3 1/2).

**Dry Onion Soup Mix (use half for this pot roast) - Combine the following and store in airtight container: 8 tsp. dried onion flakes, 1 1/2 tsp. dried parsley, 1 tsp. onion powder, 1 tsp. ground mustard, 1/2 tsp. celery seeds, 1/2 tsp. sea salt, 1/2 tsp. sugar, 1/4 tsp. black pepper.

**Cream of Mushroom Soup: In small saucepan, whisk combine 1 1/4 c. dairy-free milk, 2 Tbsp. rice flour, 1 Tbsp. cornstarch, 1 Tbsp. canola oil, 1/2 tsp. sea salt, 1/4 tsp. onion powder, 1/8 tsp. garlic powder. Add in 1/2 c. canned mushrooms (pieces and stems). Cook over medium-high heat, whisking continuously until thickened. Takes a bit but thickens very quickly when it does.

Broccoli and Cauliflower Casserole

This was an experimental recipe. I actually based my version off the one given in the book, Eat Your Way Across the U.S.A., making changes as necessary for our dietary needs. Skipper loved it and the others liked it, but I personally could have used more flavor. Maybe the roast gravy spoiled this for me. Since the others ate it, I'll hang on to it for now, and hopefully be able to spice it up more.

  • 1 c. water
  • 1 large head cauliflower, broken into florets
  • 1 medium bunch broccoli, cut into florets
  • 1/4 c. Earth Balance soy/dairy-free margarine
  • 1/4 c. rice flour
  • 2 c. dairy-free milk whisked with 5 1/2 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • Daiya cheddar cheese
Steam the broccoli and cauliflower in one cup of water on the stove until slightly softened. Rinse in cold water and spread over 9x13 pan.

In a small saucepan, melt butter; stir in flour until smooth. Gradually add milk/oil and continue to whisk until thickened. Stir in seasonings. Pour sauce over vegetables and bake uncovered for 45 minutes at 325. (I ended up putting cheese on at 30 minutes in, covering with foil, and bumping the oven to 350 before cooking for an additional 40 minutes).

Green Beans
New Jersey

Look enticing to you? My family (not me) is strange and like canned green beans barely warm. Yuck. Whatever. They eat them so I guess that is all that matters.

Corn Bread Muffins

This is my favorite corn bread recipe. I made it into muffins this time. It is quick to whip up and bake for a great side to soup or dinner. These are actually re-warmed frozen muffins so they look a little funny compared to when they are first baked.

Preheat oven to 400. Grease an 8-inch cake pan with Spectrum shortening.

Whisk together in a medium mixing bowl and set aside:
  • 1 1/4 c. corn flour (cornmeal works too but I prefer the smoother texture of corn flour)
  • 1 c. flour
  • 3/4 c. brown sugar
  • 3 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
Whisk together in measuring cup:
  • 1 1/2 c. water
  • 1/4 c. olive oil
  • 3 tsp. Ener-G egg replacer
Add the wet ingredients to the dry. Mix well. Pour batter into pan and bake 30 minutes. Let cool slightly in pan before removing from pan to cooling rack.
For muffins, fill 12 muffin cups 3/4 full (I use paper liners but if not, grease). Bake for 15 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove immediately to cooling rack.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Massachusetts & Pennsylvania

The chocolate cookies is actually the state cookie of both Pennsylvania and Massachusetts, and of course Pennsylvania is known for Hershey chocolate (not that we used Hershey!). I was all set to make up a batch, but when I was browsing through recipes, I came across this very simple recipe (taken from a Penzey Spice magazine) and decided to try it instead. Glad I did!

I mean, peanut butter and chocolate... Need I say more? Seriously, though, this cookie was awesome. A huge bonus, besides being quick, easy, and kid-friendly to make, is that it is a perfect recipe to give to regular gluten folks looking to make something to include the kids. If you are one of those regular gluten folks doing that, God bless you, but be sure to use new ingredients and to line your cookie sheets with parchment paper to avoid cross-contamination.
  • 1 c. peanut butter, creamy or crunchy (we do creamy here)
  • 1 c. brown sugar
  • 1 "egg" using Ener-G egg replacer
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract (we use Spice Island)
  • 1 c. Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350. Cream all of the ingredients together in a medium bowl except the chocolate chips. Fold in the chips and spoon by the spoonful onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Makes about 24 cookies. Bake for 11 minutes. Let sit on pan on cooking rack for 5 minutes before removing to cooling rack to finish cooling. (If not, your cookies will just fall apart.)

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