Tag Archive for 'Gluten free'

Tofu Fried Rice with Kale and Mushrooms

Hi there again – as you probably noticed, I am not blogging as frequently as I used to and it is mostly due to the incredibly slow internet speed and the nonexistence of wordpress in China. I have to use a way to get around that, which makes the process even slower and uploading pictures an incredibly frustrating process. Nevertheless, I am committed to this blog and I still love it.

I have hired a new Ayi (domestic help) who has the reputation of being an excellent cook and I hope I’ll learn a lot from her. She won’t start until August, so you’ll have to wait with me until then.

We went on a week long holiday to our former home, Thailand, and I took lots of pictures at my favorite market. I’ll hold on to those until I find a place with faster internet, which might not be until our summer holiday. I also finally completed a 21-day-Clean-detox and feel great. Some of you might remember my first attempt in August 2010, which I cut short after 14 days and fell into an omnivorous food binge. Luckily that didn’t happen this time around and I feel refreshed, healthy and definitely lighter.

So what can you expect in the weeks to come? An all time favorite lentil soup recipe,  miso soup with mushrooms and soba, my wonderfully gratifying sourdough bread experience and today this fried rice recipe, which I make all the time. I am surprised it hasn’t made it onto the blog until today. Here we go…

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Pear, Date and Ginger Crisp

This recipe came about when I was on an elimination diet a while ago. It doesn’t contain any gluten (as long as you use gluten-free oats), no eggs or dairy (ignore the ice cream…) and is sweetened with agave and maple syrup. Technically maple syrup is not “allowed” in an elimination diet, but one can only live so healthy. I named it “Vegan Pear Crisp”, but didn’t think this would be a very enticing blog title and therefore left out the ‘vegan’ bit. I love to come up with food that is enjoyable to everyone, no matter what food preference or intolerance. I now make this crisp even on diet-free occasions and have successfully used the topping over apples and berries, leaving out the ginger and dates.

I used cold pressed virgin coconut oil for the crisp topping. You can find it at health food stores and good supermarkets. The lauric acid in coconut oil is easily digested and is supposed to have antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties. The coconut taste isn’t detectable when the oil is used for baking. If you are unable to find it or are not in the mood to go dairy free, use melted butter instead of the coconut oil. Three to four tablespoons or 50g will do the trick. Don’t forget the chill time once you have made your topping (see method below).

I am sorry for not posting anything last week, I have been busy baking and cooking. To make up for my absence I’ll post something delicious every day this week. Stay tuned…

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Yummy Beany Burrito

This was my lunch today:


Now you’ll probably think, “how on earth does she have the time to make herself a lunch like that on an ordinary weekday”, followed by “she must have gone out for lunch”. Actually, I made it myself, but used mostly leftovers from last night’s dinner, except for the corn tortilla, which is fresh and home made. I am getting ready for my next cooking class “Mexican Fiesta” and have been making tortillas non-stop. I went and bought myself a cast iron skillet yesterday, which makes much better tortillas than any of the pans in my cupboard. It wasn’t too expensive, even by OZ standards and is well worth it. I am also getting better at getting the right dough consistency, which just like pasta making, requires patience and practise. I watched about 20 YouTube videos, in English and in Spanish, as well as reading countless blog entries. Now you’re probably wondering why I am not going to the store and buy them instead of going through all this trouble. And believe me, I would, were we anywhere close to a place that sells good tortillas. The only thing you get in Perth is the El Paso brand and it’s relatives, which if you’re like me and religiously read through the list of ingredients, is not an option. Numbers, preservatives and additives galore. That’s why they have a shelf life of a million years.

I haven’t tried to make flour tortillas, mainly because of a good friend who is a celiac and she’s coming to one of the cooking classes. Speaking of which, I seamed to have found my calling. Mexican Cooking classes! Nothing has ever created such an interest before. So far I have 3 full classes for next month, of which all the proceeds go to a post-Christmas shopping trip to NYC! Sorry I made you think they would go to a charitable cause there for a second. Next year, I promise. This is my first profit ever, and I need to reward myself. Bingo! 

Back to food! What you see on the picture is actually a burrito – pre-wrapped. I did wrap it in aluminium foil after I took the picture. It does hold everything together so much better and keeps things warm. But you don’t have to, and for the environment’s sake, probably shouldn’t. What went in it? Pinto beans, tomato salsa fresca, brown rice, avocado slices and a sprinkle of medium cheddar cheese. Of course there are all kinds of ways to make your burrito, but I love beans in all shapes and colors and wouldn’t substitute them for anything. The salsa is straight forward; all you really need is good tomatoes, fresh coriander (cilantro), fresh chilies, onion, garlic, lime juice and salt.

As to the remaining ingredients for my burrito, I have to have avocado. I can’t really have any Mexican food without it. I also love the brown rice in it. It rounds it all up, and soaks up some of the spice, in case you went a little over board. I am pretty ambivalent about the cheese. It’s definitely not a must. That’s pretty much it. Check it out. It’s delicious, fun, good for you and the planet and you can eat it with your hands!

Continue reading ‘Yummy Beany Burrito’

Lentil Burgers with Coriander Yogurt

These vegetarian burgers are a great substitute for hamburgers. They get their crispiness from rice crumbs, lot’s of flavor from all the veggies and a bit of texture from the walnuts. I made them with green (Puy) lentils as well as orange ones, and I although they were both good, we preferred the green version. We love them with sweet potato fries and coriander yogurt (see below).

adapted from www.wholefoodsmarket.com

Serves 6


  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 small zucchini, finely chopped
  • 1 stick celery, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped button mushrooms
  • 2 small cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked lentils, or 1 (15-ounce) can lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup rice crumbs, for breading
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided


Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, mushrooms, walnuts, parsley, thyme, salt, pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 5 minutes; transfer to a large bowl.

In a food processor, purée 1 cup rice, lentils and egg until smooth. Transfer to bowl with vegetables, add remaining 1 cup rice and stir to combine. Form lentil mixture into 10 to 12 patties, using about 1/4 cup of the mixture to make each one. Put 1 cup of rice crumbs in a shallow bowl and coat each patty with the crumbs.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Arrange half of the patties in skillet and cook, flipping once, until golden and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes total. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and repeat process with remaining olive oil and patties. Serve hot.

Coriander Yogurt

Even though it takes a little planning, drained yogurt is a great substitute for the very rich “Greek” yogurt. It can be used sweetened (it’s delicious with maple syrup and fresh orange juice) as a fruit topping or with crumbles or cakes and savory as a dip for raw veggies, with naan bread or other Indian food, or as a side for BBQ dishes. Parsley and chives can be substituted for the coriander.


1 kg plain low fat yogurt

2 handful chopped fresh coriander, chopped

4 spring onions, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced

3 cloves garlic, finely minced (garlic press is best)

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon olive oil

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


  1. Place colander over bowl and line with cheese cloth
  2. Pour yogurt onto cheese cloth-lined colander and cover with plastic wrap. Place in refrigerator over night or at least 5 hours
  3. Remove drained yogurt from colander and discard liquid (whey)
  4. Mix yoghurt with coriander, spring onions, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper
  5. Taste and adjust with more salt, pepper, lemon juice or oil if necessary
  6. Serve along side sweet potato fries and lentil-walnut-burgers

Flourless Almond Poppyseed Cake

adapted from Chocolate and Zucchini

This is a delicate light cake with a bit of crunch from the poppy seeds and a hint of citrus flavor. It’s delicious with yogurt on the side and it keeps well. It was part of my baking class test recipes and I’ll definitely include it in the gluten-free class later this year. I love the challenge of making something delicious “out of the box” and I can’t wait to find more of those recipes down the line.

For the cake:

1/4 cup (60 g) butter, softened

1/4 cup unsalted almond butter

1/2 cup cane sugar

1 tablespoon white caster sugar

zest of one organic orange and lemon, finely grated

4 eggs, separated

1 1/2 cups + 2 tablespoons, ground almonds or almond meal

1/2 cup poppy seeds

1 teaspoon baking powder

pinch of salt

For the lemon syrup (optional):

1/2 cup lemon juice

2 tablespoons brown rice syrup

1 tablespoon raw sugar

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180C) and grease a 8-inch springform cake pan.

Combine the butter, almond butter, 1/2 cup sugar, and the orange zest in a large bowl. Cream together with handheld electric mixer (or in a stand mixer) for 2 minutes. Add the egg yolks and mix until fluffy.

Combine the ground almonds and poppy seeds in a medium bowl.

In a clean, grease-free bowl, combine the egg whites with the salt and baking powder. Using an electric mixer, beat until the egg whites are fluffy. Add the 2 tablespoon of white sugar, and keep beating until the egg whites form a smooth and glossy mass.

Working with a light hand, add one third of the egg whites to the first mixture and stir with a spatula to lighten. Fold in half of the poppy seed mixture. Add another third of the egg whites, folding it in gently with a spatula. Fold in the remaining poppy seed mixture, and add the last of the egg whites, working very gently to keep as much air as possible in the egg whites, until the egg whites are completely incorporated. Don’t worry if the mixture is a little lumpy.

Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes, until puffy and lightly brown. Turn the oven off and leave the cake inside to set for another 10 minutes.

Transfer to a cooling rack, and drizzle with half the syrup. Let cool for 10 more minutes, before drizzling cake with remaining syrup. Run a knife around the cake to loosen, and then remove sides of pan.

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Flourless Chocolate Cake is one of our favorite deserts. We used to buy it from a lady at the market, which was divine. Unfortunately, she sold the business and now I have to make it myself. Actually it is rather easy and quick.  Which of course no one can tell – it’s always a show stopper at a party. To get a deliciously light-textured cake, take it easy on the beaten egg whites.. Really good quality dark chocolate makes a difference as does toasting and grinding the almonds yourself.  I am sorry to all my American friends that this recipe comes with metric measurements. The next time I make it, I will definitely measure everything out in cups and take some better pictures. In the meantime, check out the conversions link. Good luck!



Serves about 8.

150 g dark chocolate (70% works well)

100 g unsalted butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 large eggs at room temperature

100 g raw sugar

70 g white caster sugar

200g ground almonds                               

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius (350F)

Grease the side and base of a 20cm ( 8 inch) diameter springform pan.

Place butter, chocolate and vanilla in a medium saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently. Remove from heat when chocolate and butter have melted and mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool to room temperature.

Separate the egg whites from the egg yolks, taking care not to break the yolks. If any of the yolk gets into the whites, the yolk will prevent the egg whites from whipping properly.

In large mixing bowl, beat yolks with raw sugar using electric hand-held beaters or an electric mixer. Beat until mixture is light, thick and creamy.

Gently fold cooled chocolate mixture into yolk mixture.

In a separate bowl, beat egg whites with the white sugar using electric hand-held beaters until stiff peaks form.
Working with a light hand, add one third of the egg whites to the chocolate/egg mixture and stir with a spatula to lighten. Fold in half of the almonds. Add another third of the egg whites, folding it in gently with a spatula. Fold in the remaining almonds, and add the last of the egg whites, working very gently to keep as much air as possible in the egg whites, until the egg whites are incorporated. Don’t stir too much, it’s fine if you leave a few streaks of egg white in the mixture.

Pour mixture into prepared pan and bake for 40 minutes. Turn the oven off and leave the cake inside to set for another 10 minutes.

Remove cake from oven and cover with a clean tea towel. Allow to cool in pan.

Serve slices of the cake with whipped cream, berries, ice cream, chocolate sauce or simply dusted with icing sugar.