Sunday, June 24, 2012

Gluten Free New York Style Cheesecake

We had a dinner party at a friend's house Saturday night so I did my usual phone call ahead of time.   I ask what we are having and offer to bring something.  Since it can be difficult to feed me I normally offer to bring a dish or two so there is something I know will be safe.  Dessert is normally one of the dishes I bring.  I decided to tackle cheesecake for the first time ever!  And Oh Man this Gluten Free cheesecake is Amazing!!!

I adjusted this recipe to make it safe.  I also made strawberry sauce to go with it and got the recipe from here.

What You Need:
1 bag of GF Ginger Snaps (8oz bag)
2 tbsp butter - melted

4 - 8oz GF cream cheese packages at room temperature
1 cup white sugar
3/4 cup milk
4 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 tbsp GF vanilla extract
1/4 cup GF flour mix
Lemon zest of half a lemon

How to Make It:
Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease the sides and bottom of the spring form pan.  Crush your ginger snaps.  I put them in a ziploc bag and used a rolling pin to crush them.  Mix crumbs with melted butter. Press into spring form pan and let it go up the sides about 1/2 inch.

Mix together the sour cream, GF flour and GF vanilla extract in a bowl and set aside.  Mix together the cream cheese, sugar, milk, lemon zest and eggs.   Mix in the sour cream mixture.

Fill pan and bake for 1 hour.  Then turn off the oven (don't open the door) and leave it in the oven for at least 2 hours.
Once it is cooked let chill for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator.

This was a huge hit!  It tasted like regular cheesecake and the crust was on point!  The strawberry sauce gave it a nice sweet touch.  I will make this again and it will be a great base for flavored cheesecakes! 

This post linked to Gluten Free Wednesdays.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Gluten Free Menu June 18th


Here is my game plan for this week:

MONDAY - Steak and grilled veggies
TUESDAY - Going to try black bean burgers again
THURSDAY - Mexican Shepherds Pie
FRIDAY - Chicken Fried Rice
SATURDAY - Dinner at friend's house
SUNDAY- Dinner at hubby's mom's  house

SIDES - veggies, baked potatoes and mac-n-cheese

LUNCHES - Leftovers

"The code (menu) is more what you'd call "guidelines"than actual rules. " 
- Adjusted quote from what movie?!

I have to admit the menu is more of a guideline for me.  I don't always cook these meals on the nights I say.  Having a menu planned allows me to grocery shop smarter and know what I have on hand.  So if we aren't in the mood for pork chops on Wednesday I know I can make the chicken dish from Friday.

Have a great week!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Gluten / Allergen Free Expo Charlotte NC 2012 Recap

The 2012 Gluten Free Expo in Charlotte was AWESOME this year!  The venue was much better than last year.  There was so much more space to walk around and more vendors to talk to.  It was so freeing to be able to walk up to any table and eat whatever they had out because it was all Gluten Free!  And boy did I eat my fair share of tasty GF treats!
Top Left: my SWAG Top Right: The Famous Jules
Bottom Left: Corbbitt from Bella Monica Bottom Right: Carrie and I at Fuel 

For Mother's day I requested a night away from the 3 kids so I could go to Charlotte early Friday, do some shopping and enjoy my time at the Expo.  It was a much needed break!  I stayed at a nice hotel downtown Charlotte and guess what was directly across the street - FUEL PIZZA!  I was honored to be able to meet up with Carrie from Ginger Lemon Girl and her hubby for dinner at Fuel Friday.  She is so sweet and caring!  We had a great time eating the best GF pizza and chatting.  She has a book coming out soon - buy it here!

Saturday I got to the Expo early to get free GF pancakes from 123 Gluten Free and hear some of the awesome talks.  Some big names where there like Dr. Alessio Fasano, Shannon Ford (Mrs. USA 2011), and Jules Shepard.

There were a ton of vendors there.  It is always good to talk to new companies that have new GF options and taste new products.  I also picked up some great coupons that I have already used on a couple of products!

Some of the vendors I loved:
Best Pizza - Of course goes to FUEL.  I just LOVE LOVE LOVE their Gluten Free pizza.  It is worth the 2 hour drive from my house to get it!

Best Cupcakes - Cupcakistry.  She seriously needs to open a bakery somewhere.  I would order her stuff for all my birthday parties.  I had a salted carmel cupcake that was UNREAL good!  I also bought a cake pop - tasty!

Best New Product - Glutino's pita chips.  Have you tried these yet?!  They would go great with a spinach artichoke dip.

Best Non-sandwich Bread - My Gluten Free Bread Company.  He had a very good banana nut bread.  I bought a mini-loaf that I ate in the car on the way home.

Best Fun Food Item - Hush puppies from Palmetto Farms.  I haven't had a hush puppy in over two years.  Their corn meal hush puppy was full of flavor and had a nice crunch.

Best Cake - Mina's Purely Divine had a great pound cake and white cake.  They sell mixes and the final products were not gritty at all.

There were also some great restaurants represented like Posana Cafe and Nothing But Noodles.

I talked to just about every vendor and ate way too much food!  It was a wonderful expo.  I could feel the sense of community among all the people there.  We all have this common bond and it made the expo a very comfortable place to be.

Can't wait for next year's event and the same group of people are putting together an expo in Raleigh this August.  Count me in!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

My Gluten free week

Life is just crazy right now. The twins just turned 7 months old, we reduced Cali's play school days, my mom has been with us a lot and I'm still working 20 hours a week. So my blogging has suffered. Sorry!!

Here are some pictures of what I've been eating.

I found this tasty treat at a bakery in Durham. It was the only Gluten free item. Super tasty. Anyone know what it is called? I can't remember!

We grabbed some peaches from the farmers market so I made peach pancakes. The twist was adding Gluten Free cornmeal!

I made sweet potato black bean burgers for dinner one night this week. They were pretty good but I think I will make some changes next time. I used ground Gluten free oats as the binder.

Dessert today was this tasty peanut butter mug cake. So easy!

Hope you had a good week!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Gluten Free Lemon Squares

When looking for a light dessert to take to a cook out with friends I came across some yummy pictures of lemon squares on Pinterest.  With a bag of fresh lemons from Aldi in the fridge I was ready to go.  After looking around I decided to work off of this recipe.  I made two dishes, one with coconut and one without.
What You Need:
1 1/2 cups GF flour
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
3/4 cup butter
4 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
juice of 2 lemons
zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup GF shredded coconut

How to Make It:
Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix together GF flour and confectioners sugar.  Cut in the butter, I used my hands.  For the coconut batch I put 1/4 cup of coconut in the flour mixture.  Press dough into 9x13 or 2 9x9 pans.  Use parchment paper or spray with GF cooking spray to avoid sticking.  Bake for 15 minutes.  I let mine sit for 10 minutes while I mixed the lemon layer.

Mix together the remaining ingredients with a hand mixer, I left the coconut out until I poured half the mixture onto one of the cooked flour layers.  Then I added the coconut for the second pan.  Pour over flour layer and cook for 20 minutes.

I put a dusting of confectioners sugar on my batches.  The coconut pan also had some coconut sprinkled on top so people would know which ones had coconut.

I let mine chill for 2 hours in the fridge before I cut them into squares.

These were a hit!  And to be honest I saved some for me and froze them so I could have a little snack for later.

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