Sunday, April 28, 2013

Ginger Chicken over Puffed Rice Noodles

I've seen puffed rice noodles in cookbooks and thought they would be fun to make. Just the idea of watching a straight noodle transform into a curly, crispy noodle in hot oil sounded pretty cool to me.  I don't get to eat Chinese food because of my gluten intolerance unless I make it myself. It was time. This chicken was so delicious.  I found a similar recipe in The Gluten Free Bible and just decided I would adapt it to suit the tastes of my family.

Ginger Chicken over Puffed Rice Noodles

Vegetable oil for frying
4 ounces of thin rice noodles, broken into small pieces
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts or 10 or so chicken tenders, cut into bite size pieces
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
2 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup water
1 tablespoon cornstarch
Additional oil (roughly 2 tbsp) for cooking chicken
6 oz fresh snow peas
1/2 cup frozen corn
Cilantro to taste
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon gluten free soy sauce (add more if you like)

Heat about 3 inches of oil in a Dutch oven until oil registers at 375 degrees on a deep fry thermometer.  Fry noodles in small batches only about 20 seconds or until they are puffy. Hold down the noodles with a slotted spoon or tongs. Drain on paper towels.

This was an 8 oz box of noodles. I decided to fry them all. Just for, again, the fun of it. Let me tell you-- it made A LOT! So yes, for a meal, all you really need is half the box, unless you're feeding an army.
Combine chicken, lemon juice, garlic, ginger, red pepper, and black pepper in a medium bowl.  Blend water and cornstarch in another bowl and set aside. 
Discard all but about 2 tablespoons of oil from the dutch oven. Or you can start with fresh oil. Add the chicken mixture to the hot oil and stir fry that until the chicken is done.  Add the snow peas and the corn and cook that for a couple more minutes.  Stir the cornstarch mixture (it will settle) and add that to the chicken mixture.  Cook until thickened.  Add the cilantro, brown sugar, and soy sauce.  Cook for just a minute until heated through.  Serve over the puffed rice noodles.
We did not have any leftovers. It really was delicious. Now, I do have a big bag of left over fried noodles. I'm thinking beef and broccoli tonight to go over those ;-).

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Gluten Free Chocolate Layer Cake

I don't bake very often anymore, but when I do, I sometimes go all out. I usually want more than a brownie or a cookie. I also love to try new and fun desserts. My favorite dessert is chocolate cake. I just love it! Because we try to limit our sugar intake, this was a very special treat for us.  

This cake is not a fluffy cake like a Devil's Food would be, but rather dense, yet moist. Next time I experiment, I will be trying to develop one that is fluffier, but honestly, this hit the spot. It was delicious. I just used a familiar chocolate buttercream frosting to ice between the layers and on the top and sides. You just can't go wrong with buttercream frosting! My only problem is that I always misjudge and I end up not putting enough frosting between the layers. There is always plenty on top so that allows for a lot of spreading :). 

Cake recipe:

2 1/2 Cups white rice flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
3/4 cup cocoa

Whisk all the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl and set aside.

1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup oil
1 cup fresh coffee
1 teaspoon vanilla

Whisk all the wet ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.

2 cups of sugar
4 large eggs

Beat the sugar and eggs in an electric mixer bowl. Add the flour mixture and the milk mixture to the sugar/eggs alternately and gradually.  Be sure to mix well..stopping the mixer and scraping down the sides and through the bottom often. Once mixed thoroughly, pour the batter evenly into 2 round cake pans that have been greased and floured.  Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Test the center for doneness.  Cool completely on wire racks before frosting.

For the frosting, choose your favorite one to use. Again, chocolate buttercream is perfect for this cake.
See how dense the cake is? It really was so delicious and we, a family of four, ate it all in three days! Another reason I don't bake often!!

So try this gluten free dessert and let me know what you think.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

A First For Everything

There's a first for everything, right?? At least that's what "they" say.  Common emotions that go along with "firsts" are nervousness, joy, excitement, and fear.  We usually don't want to admit when we are afraid, but it's really OK and it really is normal.
Friday I will be leaving to attend my first Homeschool conference. All those emotions I listed..well..I'm experiencing them. I will be meeting online friends for the first time. This is exciting. This makes me nervous. I will be learning new things during the sessions and that brings me joy. Of course there is fear of the unknown. Yes..I've read hints and tips and what to expect at the conference. Which, by the way, is the Titus 2:1 Conference. But there is still the tiny bit of fear lurking at doing something for the first time. And. It. Is. OK. I know I'm going to be blessed. All those other emotions far exceed little ole fear. I'm thankful for that. I've been praying for and about this conference for a few weeks now. I'm blessed to have a praying husband too. He's prayed for me and the entire weekend as well. It is all in God's hands and I'm looking forward to what He has in store for me and all the other mamas there.