Mouthgasmic

A Gluten-Free Blog for the Taste Full World

International Soups & Stews edition of Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free! January 31, 2010

I hope your bags packed, your ticket purchased and your passport is up to date, because it’s time to take a tour of the world!

uh…

I mean, I hope your stock pots are washed, your table cleared and your bowls and spoons are ready and waiting because it’s time to bring the world’s best gluten free soups and stews into your kitchen!

First, I would like to thank everyone who participated in this month’s theme.

I also want to thank Naomi for starting this whole thing and continuing to organize hosts and themes.

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Alright. Ladles and appetites ready?

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Let’s start in my home region with some Southwestern style Tortilla soup from “The Gluten Free Diaries.” This is just the thing for a cold night after a long day.

Chili style stews are classic, as is tomato soup.

Although the origin of tomatoes in soup is probably English or French,

possibly Italian- the tomato itself probably comes from Peru. So that’swhere we’ll head to pick some of those ripe red fruits (unless you’re in the US, where they are legally vegetables). Juanita from “There can be only Juan” provides the recipe for this old favorite.

From Peru, we continue south and east. On your left you will see the 1,000+ Polynesian islands in the south and central region of the Pacific Ocean. From here, Shirley at “Gluten Free and Easy” has brought on board her Polynesian Sweet & Sour Stew. With thick, hearty with big chunks of vegetables, sausage and a tropical flare, this is sure to become a regular comfort food.

Chaya, the Comfy Cook, leads us north to Asia next. Her “Emerald stir-fry” will pair nicely with this flight’s complimentary side of rice. Crisp green veggies, plus beef in a rich, dark sauce is sure to keep me happy!

Now that we’ve crossed International Date Line, it’s safe to say we are now heading west. Smell anything delicious? Wafting up is the smell of a couple billion people cooking a myriad of tasty, yummy things. Although we don’t have time to stop, I will offer up an Indian inspired recipe of my own. India is one of the leading sources of pumpkin and turmeric is commonly featured in Indian curries. My Spicy Pumpkin soup will warm your mouth and your stomach through the in-flight movie.

If you thought you were full, don’t recline your seat for a nap just yet. When you smell Naomi’s next recipe, your belly will make room. Her Persian “Cinnamon Scented Beef Dumpling Stew” looks incredibly inviting.

While we’re in the area, how about sampling some “Persian Pomegranate & Walnut Stew” from For the Love of Food? Served over rice, the fresh Pomegranate provides a burst of flavor, sweetness and bite. Yum, yum!

As we head over to Europe, grab your sweater from the overhead compartment or request a blanket from the flight staff; it’s going to get cold outside.

To keep you warm, Bean from Without Adornment is dishing up some “Swedish Meatball Stew“. This winter favorite is an all-in-one meal with plenty of protein and a variety of vegetables.

As the plane detours south to Spain, curl up with a sunny cup of “Tofu & Pinto Bean soup” from Iris at The Daily Diatribe. With its bright colors and clear broth, its a reminder for those of you from snow-locked cities that eventually, the sun will shine again.

We have one more stop in the Old World, and that’s up to Brittain for something very traditionally English: roast beef. Over at Live Once Juicy, we’re having “Slow Cooker Roast Beef“. I imagine this is the kind of thing we’d find at a tiny, out of the way pub where they’ve been making stew this way for centuries. Enjoy it in a dark booth with an ice cold pint of whatever is on tap.

Tracee, from Mrs. Ed’s Research and Recipes brings us back to this side of the Atlantic. Her “New England Clam Chowder” is a warm welcome for us, the weary travelers, and now we just need to find some GF oyster crackers to accompany this traditional northeastern treat.

As we land, safe, sound and almost satiated, Wendy, the Gluten Free Greenie (which I read first as Geenie), tempts us with one last stew. Her “Autumn Stew” recipe is full of all the things that we love about home: it’s warm, its comforting and it comes with biscuits.

Now that we have sampled some of the best soups of the world, we have to wonder- what’s next?

Find out tomorrow over at “Without Adornment” I, for one, am waiting eagerly for info on February’s edition of Go Ahead Honey, it’s Gluten Free!

 

A revelation and Italian style mac & cheese January 29, 2010

In the last several months, I have combed through a myriad of food blogs and I have found there are a few dichotomies¬† within the foodie blogosphere. As I have been writing in this blog, I’ve wondered, “Where is my place in this blogging system?” To find out, I present you with the types of bloggers that emerge at the intersections of these dimensions.

Here’s how I see the food blogging divide at its most extreme:

Do you know people on either side of this scale? We have people who spend a few hours each day preparing delicious foods that are extremely healthy, but in most cities that also means the ingredients are quite expensive. We also have people who don’t have time to heat a prepared, frozen hamburger patty, much less¬† grind three kinds of meat, bake the buns and toast them with homemade garlic butter. There are many people who can’t afford gourmet, organic, hormone free meat or any flour other than store-brand wheat, who still want something good to eat after a long day.

I don’t think the above image should represent the intersections of cooks today. I love cooking and I love to go all out, but I don’t have the time or budget to do so every day. I can’t search through my local farmer’s market (most people don’t have one at all, and the once-per-week one near me is quite small and limited) for a good deal on lavender honey. From my searches, most of the gluten free cooks on the internet are also striving to be all natural with 4 star quality and presentation, and I can’t live up to that.

What if I want to be a natural-as-possible, budgeted meat AND veggie eater who likes grain but without corn or wheat and has some time, but not much?

This realization occurred in last night’s round of “what to eat for dinner?”

I wanted mac & cheese. Growing up, this meant getting a <99 cent box from Kraft and following the directions on the box. My mom would add tuna fish and peas to give the meal some protein and vegetable value. That’s it: 20 minutes and it was on the table. But last night, I had to skim several blogs with homemade mac & cheese recipes because I can’t make it from a box any more. These recipes have 12 ingredients and as many steps. I was daunted.

Then rationality came home in the form of the wonderful man I love. I mentioned that I was going to make mac & cheese, but that it was going to be too much work. “Seriously?” he asked. I explained patiently that I couldn’t just make it from a box any more, that this was Gluten Free macaroni and cheese. I had to adapt Ina Garten’s recipe, I had to use 45 dishes and utensils and order in special spcies from Tibet and the whole process would take too much time and effort and money that we don’t have.

Turns out, boyfriend has never had the Kraft version. His mother boiled noddles, grated cheddar cheese while they cooked,

mixed a little Worcestershire sauce with milk and Tabasco and mixed everything on the drained noodles. That’s it: 20 minutes and on the table.

WHAT? I exclaimed, We don’t need saffron, organic sour cream, fresh ground mustard powder and a Tibetan monk’s blessing?

Apparently not.

Now, I am not knocking those recipes I found that were complicated, tempting and surely decadently divine. I simply cannot achieve those standards on a daily basis. When I try, I wind up getting discouraged and overwhelmed, doing nothing and eating spinach leaves dipped in dressing for dinner (they’re more fun to dip like fries than to eat as a proper salad).

Mac & cheese CAN be a special event dish, done up impressively and served alongside a gorgeous prime rib and asparagus with hollenaise sauce.

Or… mac & cheese can be an impulse, 10:30 at night, there’s nothing else that sounds good, quick, easy and inexpensive kind of food.

*We have two bowls of cheese above because I made mine with cheddar AND mozzarella. That, and having one pot of wheat and one pot of rice noodles, was the craziest we got in this recipe. Since it comes from Evan’s mother’s way of cooking mac & cheese, and because she is Italian (not just in heritage), this is our Italian style mac & cheese:

Boil water

Trow in your desired amount of macaroni noodles

While noodles cook, grate about a 1/2 C of cheese per serving (+/- your desired level of cheesiness)

Mix a dash of Worcestershire sauce (or wheat free soy sauce+squirt of Dijon mustard) and hot sauce with 1 C milk per person

Drain noodles and return to cooking pot.

Add cheese and stir furiously.

Add milk mixture slowly until sauce is creamy and thick. (CAREFUL!! if you have too much milk, your cheese won’t stick to the noodles)

Eat quickly!  The cheese will coagulate and be harder to eat as it cools. Adding some flour/corn starch to the milk mixture can help alleviate this effect.

In conclusion, you will see more slapped together kinds of meals here, but they will be tasty even if the ingredients are basic and the presentation is plebeian. I think we should be multi and cross-dimensional in the way we cook. There should be as many styles (and combinations of styles) as there are cooks. This comic gives a 2-dimensional version of what I would like to see.

 

Girl vs. Grill January 13, 2010

Filed under: Other — Laura @ 10:28 pm

I haven’t had a barbecue available for regular grilling since 2006. I love grilled food, so my taste buds have been quite sad. Whether pan cooked, sauteed, or baked meats and vegetables are not nearly as delicious if they aren’t grilled. Try as I might to recreate grilled chicken in my skillet, it lacks the proper texture. Seared and broiled steak may retain flavor, but I miss the charred edges the good old BBQ gives red meat. Vegetables with grill smoke are clearly superior to the steamed, fried, baked or raw variety– at least according to my own pallet. As a southwest native, I am accustomed to grilling year round. I have grilled my dinner in every season, rain or shine, night or day. I know of no rules for when it is “grilling season.”

And so, I finally broke down and purchased an indoor grill. Will it do my old BBQ justice? Will it be a quickly returned disappointment? I don’t know yet. I will return with reports of this girl’s grilling attempts.

The Grill:

 

Where have I been? October 10, 2009

Filed under: Other — Laura @ 9:06 am

In both my internet and real-world presences, I’ve become quite a-social. In the last couple months, I started a new job and moved to a new apartment. Since then, I’ve been trying to get myself together and find time for everything I want to do! I know this isn’t a new story, but… there it is.

My new apartment is cute, albeit tiny. I have two major problems as concern this blog. First, I have a gas stove. I’ve never worked with a gas stove before. I had to have my boyfriend light the range and I still don’t think the oven part works. I am terrified of doing something wrong and blowing up my apartment, my birds, my dog, the BF, and myself. So, my cooking has been limited to toaster-oven and microwaveables.

Speaking of microwaves, is it weird not having one? My practical BF pointed out last night that I use the toaster oven more than the microwave; so why keep it around in a house where extra space is a myth? Doesn’t everyone have one? How would I make… and I couldn’t think of anything that I regularly eat that *needs* the microwave! I reheat my leftovers in the oven because they taste freshly made that way and I can use a saucepan or kettle to heat water.

Anyway, my second big problem is beyond personal ignorance. My sink has been leaking behind the wall since before I moved in. Right now, there is a big hole where my backsplash used to be, parts of the linoleum countertop are ripped off and the plumber isn’t coming until Monday. They’re probably going to tear out the bottom half of my cabinetry because all that water = mold. ugh. I’m glad I’m only a renter, but they better get every spore or I will have serrious problems living here.

So this is why I haven’t been posting. Hopefully once my sink and stove issues are resolved, I will have something tasty to post. I will be making some Pumpkin apple muffins for this month’s Go Ahead Honey, it’s Gluten Free meme. So look forward to that plate of deliciousness!

 

Welcome! March 23, 2009

Filed under: Other — Laura @ 6:58 am

Mouthgasmic is a collection of personal recipies and glorious creations found online. Send pictures with recipies for your own delicious dishes. My goal is to share food that brings pleasure to mouths everywhere.