Apr 29, 2017

Shrimp Enchilada Tacos

The best gluten free Enchilada Shrimp Taco I have ever had!! No lies here, I have eaten lots of tacos in my lifetime and this is one of the best I have had.  The shrimp recipe is a recipe I use a lot for my empanadas but since I had made some slammin enchilada sauce I decided to change the recipe to include the sauce and the results were STUPENDOUS!! I had to force myself and my family to stop picking on them until I did the measurements.   

Just look at them shrimps, don't they look yummy? well they are just as good, actually better than they look.  If you make this recipe, please tell me what you thought. By the way I used about 2 pounds of shrimps (about 60 shrimps) but you can definitely cut that amount in half.  You don't even have to adjust the other ingredients if you don't want to, I wouldn't.  It would just mean extra sauce you can probably use on another dish.

Salsa Verde

So I love me some Mexican Salsa! Actually I love anything Mexican 😊 I made this salsa verde 2 different ways.  I made it the traditional way and then I made it again adding avocados.  They are both good so it's just a matter of preference.  The salsa without the avocado is zero points.  The salsa with the avocado is one point. That's assuming you eat 1/4 cup.

This is a pic of the salsa with the avocado.  

Apr 21, 2017

Grilled Cod Fish Tacos

Fire up your grill!! not the outside grill, the inside grill! what?! you don't have an inside grill??? No worries neither do I;  I used my panini grill! These delicious gluten free fish tacos are so delicious! not to mention quick and easy! and the best part of cooking fish on the panini grill is that it didn't fall apart like it sometimes does on the grill.

 I forgot to take a pic with my camera but I did take this photo with my phone. Isn't that pretty? I also forgot to time it but it was definitely less then 10 minutes.  This is by far the quickest and tastiest fish taco I've made.

I topped the tacos with cabbage and a homemade avocado dressing that was so good I considered bottling and marketing that bad boy!! I left one taco naked so you can see how it looks. This was finger licking good! yep I really was licking my fingers! 😋😋

I love how the fish flaked. I really started something with this panini press. I think I may have to call this my new fish grill.

Pickled Cabbage (repollo curtido)

I am very picky when it comes to pickled cabbage.  There has been times when I have gone to restaurants to eat a pupusa (handmade corn tortilla with different fillings) or other dishes that are traditionally topped with pickled cabbage and I couldn't eat it. The cabbage either has too much crunch or it's too sour.

There are many ways to make this and you can really add what ever you want into this. I usually make it with just the green cabbage, carrots and white onions.  This one I included red cabbage and substituted the white onions with red onions.  It was just as good but I like the color.  Pickled cabbage gets better over time so I try to make it a day or 2 in advance.  Also, it's one of those toppings that is very versatile and will elevate almost any dish to a new level.  So the leftovers will not go to waste.

Apr 20, 2017

Avocado Dressing / Dip

I made this dressing from scratch on a whim and omg! I swear I wanted to drink it out of shot glass! Ignore the honey jar, I didn't have a small mason jar so this is what I used.  I have seriously considered marketing this but I figured I would just do the next best thing and just share the recipe. Instead of sugar I used a secret ingredient, scroll down to see 😉 best of all 2 tbsp is only 1 smart point!!

Ok I'll tell you....my secret ingredient is mango! I wasn't sure what to call this recipe. I originally made it as a dressing but then I used it as a dip for an empanada and it was awesome, then I used it on top of rice and beans and it was awesome too. I bet it would be delicious as a sandwich spread.....genius!! So I guess it's a dressing and a dip or a spread or for whatever you want!

Apr 9, 2017

Baked Buffalo Chicken Empanadas, gluten free

I have an obsession with Empanadas! My goal is to create an empanada with every gluten free or grainless dough possible! If that's not a challenge in itself, let's also try to make it light in calories??!! 😁😳 Well here it is! A baked empanada that doesn't sacrifice a damn bit of flavor! Only 4 weight watchers points for one empanada. When I was a little girl and my grandma made empanadas we would be standing around the stove waiting for it to come out of the fryer.  I don't think they ever made it to a plate on the table.  Those little pockets of fried dough with all kinds of fillings had us all fighting to be first on line.  The best part of an empanada was that we could run outside with our meals in hand without skipping a beat!  


Of course when I was diagnosed with Celiac, I thought I would never again be able to savor these little hand held meals to go.  Whenever I see food trucks or food stands that read "hand held artisan food" I feel like someone punched me in the gut!  I hate that we can't really enjoy those luxuries because our options are so limited.   Over time I have tried many different flours and I have to say it is definitely a challenge.  Some doughs just can't hold up to an empanada especially not one with less calories.  This gluten free dough was perfect! I don't normally buy Cup4Cup since I usually get good results with Trader Joe's all purpose flour but I bought a bag recently and thought I would give it a try.  I am really glad I did! It worked nicely but there are still a few key tips that you will need even with a good dough.  

First off, this is how you're supposed to cut the discs for the empanadas.  However,  I am not a trained baker and couldn't get my discs at the same thickness.  So I went a different route, I weighed the ball of dough and broke it up into 12 equal pieces and then used an empanada press to get equal thickness on each discs. I still rolled it a bit after pressing it to get it even a little flatter.  Notice in the pic I use plastic food wrap to press the dough.  This dough has good texture but using the plastic wrap is very helpful, especially for sealing the empanada. Also, if you don't have a scale to measure in grams, get one!  It will save you so much time and money! It is a more precise way to measure, especially when you are baking.  I will include the measurements in cups but if you don't get the same results you'll know why..... get the scale!

So I put the empanada disks down and then added the shredded meat to each of the discs, then began sealing them.  This was NOT the best way to make them.  The dough dried up a bit and I had trouble sealing the empanadas. Because the dough is more pliable while it is warm,  I recommend working on one empanada at a time.  So cover the other dough in a bowl with a damp towel covering the bowl while you are working on each one. 

Easy Homemade Ranch Dip

This is a quick an easy homemade ranch dip that worked perfectly with these Buffalo Chicken Empanadas.  I would've added a little chives for color if I had any 😀

  • 2/3 cup sour cream, light
  • 2 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp buttermilk
  •  2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder 

Mix all ingredients together

Yields: 12 Tbsp, Serving Size: 1 tbsp,  Smart Points: 1, Calories: 34.5,  Total Fat: 2.8g,  Saturated Fat: 1.1g,  Cholesterol: 5.3mg,  Sodium: 121.8mg,  Carbs: 1.2g,  Fiber: 0,  Sugar: 1g,  Protein: 1g

Apr 7, 2017

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup with Escarole, gluten free

Chicken soup is not just for the soul! There is evidence to suggest that it can help everything from the common cold, relieving congestion and inflammation, boosting your immune system, improving joint pain and even helps heal your intestines. This is great news for a Celiac! However,  the real benefits come from the bone broth.  Many of the store bought broths are not even made with bones and may include MSG, even the organic ones! I will still use it in a pinch, but I try to stick to the Pacific bone broth brand.  

I have been home sick for six days now! Bronchitis, Asthma and a whole lot of other stuff.  So I decided to make some real homemade broth.  Real bone broth should be slow cooked for 6 hours but I wasn't that ambitious so I went with my pressure cooker.  When I was younger my grandma used to go to the Vivero to get our chickens.  This is a live Poultry Hatcheries and it was a scary place to go if you're a kid.  I didn't understand why she wouldn't just buy the chicken in the supermarket but I understand now that she wanted to get organic meat.  Anyway,  there are no hatcheries near me but I did learn of a few that I can visit in the future.  For now, I just went with an organic whole chicken and had the butcher cut it up for me.  I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.  It makes a lot so you have plenty of leftovers.  If you don't want to do this two step process just use the Pacific bone brand.  This extra work was soooo worth it though, just saying! 😋😋

Step 1:

Chicken Bone Broth

5.5 pd whole cut up organic chicken
8 cups of water
2 carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 large onion
4 garlic cloves, sliced in half
1 tsp salt
2 tsp whole peppercorns
2 tsp coriander seeds
1 branch of Rosemary
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 cup parsley
1/4 cup scallions, white part
2 bay leaves

made 13 cups but I spilled one so I had 12

I cut out as much fat and skin as possible and I don't use the wings.  Add the chicken, and the rest of the ingredients.  After the 2 hours in the pressure cooker release the steam, open and remove the chicken onto a plate, let cool.

Line a colander with a cheese cloth and place over a bowl for the soup., when the soup is cool pour into the colander to remove all of the other ingredients and get a clear broth. discard those veggies. Your broth is ready.
Remove the meat from the bones of the cooled chicken.  I don't like to see too much dark meat in my soup so I discard the pieces that are too dark. I removed almost 1.5 pounds of chicken. Now the fun part!

Step 2:

Chicken Soup  

  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 small onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup diced ham
  • 12 cups of chicken broth
  • 12 oz shredded chicken (from above)
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 oz rice noodles
  • 5 oz escarole, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese


In a large pot, saute the onions and garlic for 2-3 min, add the ham and saute 1 more minute then add the broth, the shredded chicken and the rest of the ingredients except for the escarole and parmesan cheese.  Cook for about 15min., add the noodles and cook another 7 min. or until noodles are cooked, add the chopped escarole for the last minute. top with Parmesan cheese.

Yields: 12 Cups, Serving size: 2 Cups,  Smart points: 8, Calories: 294.3,  Total Fat: 7.7g,  Saturated Fat:  2.1,  Cholesterol: 52.2mg,  Sodium: 1227mg,  Fiber: 2.1,  Sugar: 8.6g,  Protein: 27.2g