Gluten-Free Cooking For One

Celiac And The Single Girl, Or: How To Make Food That Does Not Suck For One Person {Although I Suppose You Could Feed Other People, Too}


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Crockpot Butter Chicken

I’ve been planning to try this for a while, and today was The Day. I picked a slow cooker butter chicken recipe and here we go.

The recipe I’m trying today is this one:
http://www.chefdehome.com/Recipes/597/restaurant-style-butter-chicken-in-slow-cooker

restaurant-style-easy-indian-butter-chicken-slow-cooker-chefdehome-4

This is chefdehome’s image — not mine.

It looks yummy, and — if the smell from my kitchen is anything to go by – will be delicious. I hate to say this, but I basically followed the recipe, so you might as well go over to chefdehome and check her recipe out. It’s already gluten free, because it has no hing (asafoetida), which is almost always cut with wheat.

Happy cooking! I’ll let you know how this is when it comes out of the cooker… can’t wait.


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In The Crockpot: Slow-Cooker Honey Sesame Chicken

–The second time I’ve tried this recipe. The first time, it came out tasting like a superior baked-beans recipe, so I redid with some changes. As follows!!

Original recipe is here: http://www.getcrocked.com/2014/01/20/24569/

INGREDIENTS
4-6 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs (I used two breasts instead)
1 Onion, chopped
1 T. Flour (I used a bit more than that, and it was rice flour)
1 tsp. Ground Ginger
Salt and Pepper
3/4 c. Honey
1/2 c. gluten-free soy sauce
1/4 c. Ketchup (This is what made it baked-beany)
2 T. Sesame oil
1 tsp. Minced Garlic
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)
4 tsp. cornstarch dissolved in 6 Tablespoons water (optional)

DIRECTIONS:
1) Cut chicken (or pork) into cubes – the smaller the cubes, the less time to cook.
2) Mix flour, ginger, salt, pepper, and pepper flakes if desired, then toss chicken cubes to coat.
3) Fry the chicken cubes until slightly browned in oil (I used coconut).
4) Put the chicken into the crock pot, and if desired fry the onions a bit in the same pan. Deglaze with water or soy sauce, then pour that into the crock-pot. Put the onions and garlic in with the chicken cubes.
5) Combine the wet ingredients in a bowl (I added the last of the flour dredge) and mix well. Pour over chicken and onions mixture.
6) Turn on the crock-pot, then cook on high or low until done (I did high for about 1 hour, since I’d already browned the chicken. The recipe calls for 1.5 hours on high, with raw 2-inch cubes of raw chicken.)
7) Put it on some rice and put it in your mouth… after it’s cooled down a bit.

It was yummy this time! I used a full cup of honey as per the original instructions, but I’m going to cut that a bit next time (have changed recipe above to reflect this). Oh! I don’t know if it made any difference, but some insanity prompted me to add a bit of Worcestershire sauce Just before I turned on the crock. Just about 1 teaspoon. Yum.

As always, please pardon my not-glamorous photos. I have a very yellowish kitchen, and I am too impatient to take good photos. lol



In the cooker after slightly flouring and browning the chicken.





With the non-baked-beany sauce on top, before cooking.




Finished and delicious. Will have to get a photo with rice tomorrow, as I forgot to do that and ate tonight’s right away. Oops. :}


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What’s In The Crock Pot Tonight: Pot Roast!

I looooooooove pot roast. Love. And I found a nice big piece of chuck on sale, so half of it is in the slow cooker and half of it is in the freezer. Yay! Dinner for later too. ❤

I'm using the recipe below, but cooking it in the crock pot instead of a Dutch oven. Back in the last century (!), my grandma gave me one of the fabulous pots that lets you fry things on the stovetop in the insert, then put that directly in to cook, so you don't lose any of the juices or numminess.

Recipe is here: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ree-drummond/perfect-pot-roast-recipe.html – Ree Drummond for the Food Network. I love her rice pudding recipe, so I thought I’d give the roast a whirl. It was incredibly easy to prepare, and it smells DELISH.

Of course, I added a couple things and changed a couple. Because I never have all the ingredients.

Ingredients
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
One 3 to 5-pound chuck roast (I had 1.5lb)
2 or 3 tablespoons olive oil
2 whole onions, peeled and halved (I had about half of one, oops)
6 to 8 whole carrots, unpeeled, cut into 2-inch pieces (I had these!! Woohoo!)
1 cup red wine, optional (I used about a Tbsp of rum because, you guessed it, I had it)
3 cups beef broth (didn’t add because I didn’t want soup)
2 or 3 sprigs fresh rosemary (dried)
2 or 3 sprigs fresh thyme (dried)

(I added some Worcestershire sauce after I got everything in the pot, patted garlic salt on the meat before I browned it, and crushed then minced and added 3 cloves of garlic. I also added a big dollop of my garlic sauce on top. We’ll see if that is officially Too Much Garlic. :} I didn’t realize I had added it in three different ways until I put the lid on and started thinking about what I’d done. I was cooking on auto-pilot. Oops)

Directions
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F. (I got the crock pot ready)

Generously salt and pepper the chuck roast. (and garlic salt!)

Heat the olive oil in large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the halved onions to the pot, browning them on both sides. Remove the onions to a plate. (I added the minced garlic here)

Throw the carrots into the same very hot pot and toss them around a bit until slightly browned, about a minute or so. Reserve the carrots with the onions.

If needed, add a bit more olive oil to the very hot pot. Place the meat in the pot and sear it for about a minute on all sides until it is nice and brown all over. Remove the roast to a plate.

With the burner still on high, use either red wine or beef broth (about 1 cup – or, in my case, just enough rum) to deglaze the pot, scraping the bottom with a whisk. Place the roast back into the pot and add enough beef stock (I used water) to cover the meat halfway.

Add in the onions and the carrots, along with the fresh herbs.

Put the lid on, then roast for 3 hours for a 3-pound roast. For a 4 to 5-pound roast, plan on 4 hours. The roast is ready when it’s fall-apart tender. (I turned the crock on to low, put the lid on, and will turn it off when I get up tomorrow morning, first thing. I’ll post an update after that!)

Onions and carrots, the "vintage" crock pot, and my adorable kitchen assistant, who is now very interested in the trash. Note to self: take out trash before trouble ensues.

Onions and carrots, the “vintage” crock pot, and my adorable kitchen assistant, who is now very interested in the trash. Note to self: take out trash before trouble ensues.

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MEAT

MEAT

Ready for the lid! The big goop on the top is garlic sauce. MMMmmmmmm.

Ready for the lid! The big goop on the top is garlic sauce. MMMmmmmmm.


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What’s In The Crockpot: Shredded Beef – Update!!

I just ate a bowl of the shredded beef on quinoa, with colby jack cheese over top — it’s what I have ready to go, and I’m too hungry to be picky about the delivery vehicle — and it’s delicious!! 😀

Here’s the link from earlier today, and here’s my final recipe. As always, I had to make substitutions and some changes, both based on what I had in the kitchen and personal taste.

This recipe is from “Life in the Lofthouse” (link in the earlier post), although I found several similar; this one didn’t require tomato sauce or paste, and tomatoes are out for me (migraine trigger), so it was the winner.

INGREDIENTS
1 (2.5 lb) chuck roast — I used probably a lb of top round
1 (14 oz) can beef broth — I used water
1 1/2 Tablespoons chili powder — I only had cayenne
1/2 Tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 Tablespoon onion powder — I didn’t have, so I sliced up part of an onion and put that in the pot
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Juice of 1 Lime — I only had bottled lemon juice. I know. I know. It’s a sin. It worked, though.
2 Tbsp salsa verde — I needed a little more tang and piquancy, so I added this

INSTRUCTIONS
1) Spray crock pot with cooking spray. Place roast inside crock pot. Pour the beef broth (water) over the roast and then add fresh lime juice (or bottled lemon juice).
2) In a small bowl, whisk together chili powder (cayenne), cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Sprinkle the roast with the spice mixture.
3) Cover with lid, and cook on Low heat 8 to 10 hours, or on High heat 5 to 6 hours. Remove roast from crock pot and transfer to a large platter. Shred meat and remove any fat. Add salsa verde.
4) Return shredded beef to crock pot. Cover with lid and cook an additional 30 minutes (I went another hour because I got involved in a task). Remove beef with tongs to drain juices before serving in tortillas (or on rice, or quinoa, or salad, or…). Serve with desired toppings.

I didn’t take a picture because it was a mess. Also, I had already eaten it by the time I thought about photos. :} Sorry. Photos to come!!


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Slow Cooker Balsamic Beef

(this is how I think of it, so it’s how I’m going to title it)

I made this a bunch last winter, but apparently I never posted it here; because when I went to make it this evening, alas! I couldn’t find it. So I had to go back and find the original recipe online, which is (easier than looking for a paper recipe) not as easy as it could be. :}

I finally found it, though, here:
http://www.thekitchn.com/slow-cooker-rec-160583

The Kitchn is one of my favorite cooking websites. If I’m looking for something new to make, and a couple choices come up, and one is from The Kitchn, I’ll try that first.

Of course, as usual, I didn’t have all the ingredients as in this recipe (I don’t think I’ve ever made this exactly as shown), so here’s how I did it today:

Slow Cooker Peppered Beef Shank in Red Wine
serves 4 to 6 as a main course

2 to 2 1/2 pounds beef crosscut shank, fat trimmed away (I had 2 lbs of beef round)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable or peanut oil (I use olive)
10 to 12 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped (I leave them whole)
2 medium yellow onions, peeled and roughly chopped (I had half a large sweet yellow onion)
1 large stalk celery, roughly chopped (nope, I don’t keep celery in the house. Just don’t like it)
1 bay leaf (I used 2 because that’s how I roll)
1 rosemary sprig (about 2 teaspoons of dried rosemary, crushed)
750 ml bottle inexpensive red wine, such as Charles Shaw Cabernet Sauvignon (I used a lot of cooking sherry)
4 cups beef broth (I used about 5c water)
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (I often use black cherry, but today I went with plain)

First, in a large deep skillet, brown the meat. Get a really nice dark brown crust on it. (It says to season the meat before cooking, but I usually don’t, as I have an OCD thing about handling raw meat and oh my god my hands get sticky and ASDFGHJKL; — I know. I’m a wuss. It works just fine if you add the spices later.) My skillet is neither deep nor large enough to do all this meat at once, so I cut it into smaller chunks and do in two batches. I season as it’s cooking, and I add some salt/pepper to the pot.

Meanwhile, I was chopping the onion and preparing the garlic cloves — I don’t chop them, I add them whole, because I love getting a sweet stewed garlic clove. It’s like a little gift — and adding whole mushrooms to the pot (I don’t like celery, but I loooove mushrooms), as well as the bay leaves and rosemary. (You’re supposed to add those to the skillet in a minute, but my skillet was already overflowing with onions etc)

Once the beef’s seared nice and brown, I plop it over into the Crockpot, and add the onions and garlic to the pan. Let those soften for a good long while — I usually get them semi-transparent — and then add the wine (sherry). The recipe says a whole bottle, but skillet overflow is a tragedy when it involves alcohol, so I just added enough to deglaze the pan and simmer the vegetables. Maybe an inch. Then the balsamic vinegar, letting it simmer for about 10 minutes. This is a great time to wash dishes and tidy up!

After that was done, I poured it over the beef in the Crockpot, then added more sherry — about another third of the bottle — and water to cover, which was about 5 cups in my pot. Then covered it with the lid, and turned it on high for 4 hours. Hopefully that will be enough to get the meat somewhat tender… I hope. lol I’m impatient. I don’t want to wait until tomorrow lunch. 😀

I’ll get back to you on whether this was a long enough cook time.

UPDATE: It wasn’t quite long enough to tenderize the meat, but it’s fully cooked and not too tough. I just pulled out my five big beef chunks and cut/shredded them into bite-size chunks, then added them back to the pot. And the flavor is deLISH. So, good enough!

 

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Slow-Cooker Chicken

Hello, again! Sorry about the haitus. I haven’t felt much like cooking anything new, so it’s been lots of beef shanks in the slow-cooker here, and rotisserie chickens galore, and paneer pakoras a few times. 😐 This weekend, Target had a sale on whole chickens for $3.99, so I nabbed one, it was about a dollar a pound, and I’ve been having cravings for chicken soup… so here we are!

I pretty much made the first recipe I found for slow-cooker chicken, which was here:

http://www.thelittlekitchen.net/whole-chicken-in-a-slow-cooker/

But instead of cooking it for 6-8 hours on low, I cooked it 4-6 hours on high (I think I rounded to 5), and I inserted some butter under the skin – I saw that on a cooking show once and have been fairly drooling to try it for years and years. I think it was probably more appropriate for roasting a chicken, but hey. Butter is butter and there’s nothing bad about that.

Other than that, I followed the recipe fairly closely, with the exception of not having celery or cooking twine. So sue me. lol I figured the chicken would be a big, floppy mess (it was) and I would have to skip the browning step (which was a pity, and yes – I did). I’ll try to remember to pick some up for next time, because I do looooove brown skin on a bird.

Other than that, this turned out bland, but tasty. I mean, it tastes lemony in bits, and chickeny in the rest. And since chicken is what I wanted, it tastes good. Next time, I’ll use more spices, and probably a blend slightly more to my taste – not sure what that will be yet – and some salt. Not a lot, but a touch. And oh my gosh, a good bit more garlic. It’s nonexistent in this chicken.

There’s a nice bit of stock, and it’s quite concentrated, so I think I’ll be able to thin it down a bit and have a good amount of soup, especially once I add potatoes (a staple in my soups) and a good bit of the chicken meat back in. So that’s a win! I’ll also be using more lemon juice, since I couldn’t fit the whole lemon in my bird, and consequently have lots of lemon left over.

Hardly any photos, sorry – this was a very quick process and most of the time was spent washing the bird and then washing up and decontaminating surfaces after that, chicken makes my OCD twitch – but here’s the one I did get, of the cooker right after I popped the bird in.

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OK – I think it’s time to start making some soup!! Mwah!!