Going gluten free. First gluten free and vegan baked good –strawberry rhubarb pie!

Well, I am somewhat relieved to finally have an explanation as to why I have been so exhausted lately. I have Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, which is an autoimmune disorder. I also have hypothyroidism as a result of it. So, I started researching what else I can do that will help me to feel better besides what my doctor is doing for me. And I kept seeing the benefit of going gluten free. I know I seem to have issues with feeling like crap when I eat too much gluten, so I am trying it. It’s sad for me, because I really loved gluten. I will need to learn more about baking gluten free, and I know I can do it, and be making all sorts of new delicious vegan AND gluten free stuff in the future!

In fact, I made a pie. Unfortunately, my oven and stove just randomly stopped working yesterday. I’m glad I made this before that! I have some ideas up my sleeve for the future, but they will have to wait until it gets fixed ūüė¶

IMG_3740It’s my favorite pie of all time, strawberry rhubarb.

I actually used Bob’s Red Mill Pie Crust Mix. I had used it before and thought it was awesome even when I wasn’t gluten free.

Here is the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag Bob’s Red Mill gf pie crust mix
  • 12 tbsp Earth Balance cut into tbsp sized pieces
  • 8 tbsp cold non hydrogenated organic vegetable shortening
  • 8 tbsp cold water
  • 1 lb strawberries, chopped into slices
  • 1 1/4 cup rhubarb, chopped
  • 1 cup vegan sugar
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

Directions:

  1. First make the crust. Follow the directions on the back of the packaging. I always need the full 8 tbsp of water it says I might need. You may need 6 or 7 like it says. I find it hard to roll out after it’s been in the fridge…but I manage to fix it up if it breaks apart a bit as it’s pretty easy to put back together.
  2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  3. While the crusts are chilling, combine the strawberries, rhubarb, sugar, cornstarch, and lemon juice into a large bowl.
  4. Take the crusts out of the fridge after the hour has passed, and roll one out into a large circle.
  5. Press into a pie pan.
  6. Pour the filling inside.
  7. To make a latticed topping, cut strips out of the second pie crust after rolling it out a bit.
  8. Place the strips across the pie. First lay them out horizontally, then vertically. You may need a spatula to help you get them off your work surface, and they will probably break apart, but it will still look nice even if they break apart on the pie. Just smoosh them together a bit if they crack or fall apart in the process.
  9. Place in the oven with a cookie sheet underneath to avoid the gooey delicious filling from falling on the bottom of the oven, making a mess and a nasty smell/smoke.
  10. Bake at 425 degrees F for 15 minutes, then turn down the oven to 350 and bake for anywhere between 30-60 additional minutes until the crust is firm and golden/brown around the edges.
  11. Enjoy! My entire family loved it. When I asked if they could tell the difference between this and a gluten based pie crust, they said they couldn’t. (I can, unfortunately, haha! but it’s still really good!)

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Strawberry Frosted Baked Donuts

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Growing up as a kid in New England, I had a soft spot for Dunkin Donuts’ strawberry frosted donuts. Since they are not vegan, I can no longer eat them. But when I started experimenting with making frostings out of fruit-based syrups, I knew making something similar would be possible.

These donuts are quite cake-like, almost with a spongy texture. I still like them though. The frosting, however is wonderful. My mom said it is even better than the one at Dunkin Donuts. It is a bit different, however. But still quite good.

Recipe:

Makes 6 donuts in a single donut pan

Ingredients:

For the donuts:

  • 3/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup organic evaporated cane juice
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • generous dash of ground nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp almond milk
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp applesauce
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil

For the strawberry syrup:

  • 1/2 cup strawberries
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cup organic evaporated cane juice

For the frosting:

  • 1 tbsp Earth Balance margarine stick
  • 1 tbsp organic non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening
  • 1 cup organic powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup strawberry syrup

Directions:

For the donuts:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a mixing bowl, stir the flour, evaporated cane juice, baking powder, and nutmeg.
  3. In a separate small bowl or measuring cup, mix together the remaining donut ingredients.
  4. Pour into the dry ingredients and stir together until combined.
  5. Spray the donut pan with oil if your pan is not a non-stick pan.
  6. Spoon batter into the donut pan.
  7. Cook for 12-15 minutes or longer, until the donuts become slightly gold. Check after 12 minutes and gauge from there.
  8. Take out of the oven and let cool 10 minutes.
  9. Place onto a cooling rack. You may need to take a butter knife and gently ease them out.

To make the syrup:

  1. Combine ingredients in a small saucepan.
  2. Stir continuously with a wooden spoon over low heat until thick and hot.
  3. Strain into a bowl. Allow to cool.
  4. You will have extra leftover after making the frosting which you can use on all sorts of delicious things.

To make the frosting:

  1. Cream together the Earth Balance and shortening with an electric handheld or stand mixer.
  2. Add in the powdered sugar. It will remain clumpy.
  3. Fold in the syrup, it will become soft and fluffy.

To make the donuts (time to make the donuts!!):

  1. Spread frosting around the tops of the donuts.
  2. Decorate with vegan sprinkles on top, if desired.
  3. Eat!!

Summertime Strawberry Lavender Lemonade Cooler

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 2 lemons worth of lemon juice
  • 1 cup water
  • Liquid stevia, to taste
  • Lavender extract, to taste (can find on Amazon, I bought mine at Sur la Table)

Directions:

Blend together, enjoy.

 

 

 

Vegan New England Style “Lobstah” salad made from hearts of palm and 7 days of new smoothie recipes to share!

Hello everybody, 

I did this thing this past week that I was going to blog about. Unfortunately I got a new laptop and when I transferred all the pictures I had  from my phone to my laptop, (including the ones I needed to make the blog entry) some of them got lost in the shuffle. I tried a new smoothie recipe every day of the week, and wanted to talk about them. Instead, lacking pictures, I will post the links to the recipes I used at the end of this entry.

I do however have a picture for the recipe I am about to share!

Growing up in the New England area of the East Coast United States, lobster salads have always been a thing. They’re also usually kind of a big treat. Today I was inspired by that, and wanted to make a vegan version. This is truly “lobstah” as Bostonians and Rhode Islanders would say, but is free from any cruelty towards the real sea creatures.

I used hearts of palm as the main “meat,” and some sun-dried tomatoes as well to give color, flavor, and texture. There is a mix of seafood-y spices, lemon juice, and other seasonings, and the mix of vegenaise and vegan sour cream makes a delightfully creamy dressing for it.

New England Vegan Hearts of Palm “Lobstah” Salad

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cans salad chopped hearts of palm, drained, placed in a food processor and pulsed a few times to further chop them
  • 1/2 cup julienned cut sun dried tomatoes (the kind that comes in a bag, not packed in oil. I’d actually recommend soaking these in warm water for an hour or until a bit softer prior to including them in the salad because I didn’t and some were chewier and a bit tough when I ate them…soaking would solve that problem, but is probably optional)
  • 1 tsp kelp granules
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp dill
  • 1/4 tsp old bay seasoning
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper (use less if placing on top of greens instead of on bread)
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup vegenaise
  • 1/2 cup vegan sour cream (I used tofutti)

Directions:

  1. Place chopped, drained, and processed hearts of palm in a mixing bowl or other large container.
  2. Add sun-dried tomatoes and stir.
  3. Add spices and take a spoon to mix them into the chopped hearts of palm and sun-dried tomatoes. Make sure they are evenly coated.
  4. Add lemon juice, vegenaise, and sour cream and stir. 
  5. Serve in a bun with some crunchy lettuce, or on top of salad greens with whatever other toppings you desire.
  6. Enjoy!

 

So there is that! Now as promised, here is the list and links to the smoothies I made each day last week:

  1. Raspberry Lime Zinger from Oh She Glows *Second place in my favorites!
  2. Pumpkin Chai from The Sweet Life
  3. Key Lime Pie Green Smoothie from Healthful Pursuit
  4. Pina Colada Smoothie from Foodie with Family
  5. Orange Creamsicle Smoothie (also from The Sweet Life) *My favorite one I tried!
  6. Chocolate Strawberry Almond Protein Smoothie from The Healthy Family and Home
  7. Chamomile Strawberry Quinoa Smoothie from Apron and Sneakers¬†*Runner up for favorite ūüôā