Wednesday, March 14, 2012

A Recipe Cook-Along with Elizabeth Barbone

I was so excited a few weeks ago when one of my favorite gluten free cookbook authors, Elizabeth Barbone, asked me if I would like to participate in a blogging "cook-along" event celebrating her newest publication "How to Cook Gluten-Free." I was honored! Elizabeth's recipes were some of the first I ever tried when I went gluten free in 2007. 

Elizabeth sent me a PDF with several recipes to choose from that are in her new book. I had a hard time deciding between pizza, a grapefruit spinach salad (which may be on the menu at some point this week), but as you can see in the picture below her "donut" muffins clearly won over the salad. 

These are actually a very simple recipe for mini-donuts that you roll in powdered sugar. However I was super short on powdered sugar (I had about 1/4 cup! lol) and I was feeling adventurous that evening so I made the muffins in donut pans. Because how often do you use the donut pans

These muffins were super easy to throw together. I used gluten free flours I already had on hand instead of the ones the recipe specified, but they still worked out great! I love the grated nutmeg in the muffins, that was a lovely and simple flavor addition. One thing I noticed about this recipe was that Elizabeth chose not to use xanthan or guar gum in this recipe for muffins. So if you have trouble digesting gums or simply don't use them, this would be a great recipe for you!

My husband and I really enjoyed these muffins the next day for breakfast. We actually thought they tasted even better on the 2nd day! And for a gluten free baked good... that's a serious compliment!

For the main dish I chose to make the recipe for "Upstate Goulash."  Elizabeth explained that for her when she heard the term "goulash" it meant ground meat and pasta in a tomato sauce. That sounded perfect for dinner. 

Since I'm trying to be better about lowering the amount of overall processed carbohydrates we are eating, I decided to use diced eggplant in place of the pasta in this recipe. Eggplant is such a cool, all natural gluten free replacement for pasta. It has a great texture and it worked perfectly in this dish!

I love the simplicity of this recipe for goulash. The seasonings were simple, but flavorful, and just a touch of sugar really balanced the acidity of the tomato sauce. I really loved this recipe and while I know it would be outstanding with GF pasta, we really liked it with the diced eggplant.

So, if you are looking for a good basic gluten free cookbook, I think Elizabeth's new book, "How to Cook Gluten-Free: Over 150 recipes that really work" will be a great addition to your kitchen library!

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