Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Introduction Post

For my first post for this blog I wanted to do two things,  Introduce myself and the reason that I am on my this journey with food.

My name is Michael Huber and I have chosen to do a blog with the name 'Drumming up a better meal' based on some recommendations and pushes from my friends.    The name comes from two sources, when I go to relax after a stressful day of work I head either to my kitchen or more occasionally to my drums both of which I feel the stress of the day disappear.  

About 10 years ago I started to feel pain in most every joint of my body, and it hurt to breath and walking up a flight of stairs could take me 10 minutes or more on a bad day.  A couple years later I decided to start working with doctors to find out what was causing this problem.   After 3 years of random testing and considerable money out of pocket the doctors were no closer in finding out why the pain, though they were prescribing stronger drugs.

One day I read about how fibromyalgia sufferers were improved by simply removing gluten from their diet, I figured I could try it for 6 months having nothing to lose at that point.    So three years later after eliminating a few more foods then Gluten, I am now running up stairs when I want, practicing the martial arts again in limited capacity and in general I have days where I don't have any pain that stops me from doing what I want when I want to.

During my journey I have seen a ton of posts on the gluten free and whole foods eating groups about how difficult it is to eat healthier, how much more expensive it is and how much more time and effort it is to cook meals.   I would like to work on changing mindsets and dispelling these myths.   I spend far less time in the kitchen now and a lot less money, then I did in the years before I started my food journey.

So I am not a chef (never went to school for culinary arts), nor am I a nutritionist.   I will be posting recipes I make for myself, my family, and those fortunate souls who happen to show up for one of my parties I like to host occasionally.    These recipes will be simplified and geared toward reducing the money and time that is spent in the kitchen actively doing prep or actively cooking.

The recipes I post will be Gluten Free, and mostly grain free, nightshade Fee, and cows milk Dairy Free.   I have issues with many inflammatory causing foods and have eliminated quite a few in the first years.   As for nightshades the only ones I can take in small amounts are potatoes, sweet potatoes, and spicy peppers. 

I will occasionally cross-link to other blogs that may have good recipes that contain one of those ingredients purely to share a great idea or explain how to modify the recipe based on food sensitivities unique to me.

Chickpea soup

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeRecipes Facebook group on October 25, 2014
Michael Huber's photo.Used this recipe on bag as a starting point.

Modified it as follows
Doubled the soy and used the GF variety.
Used two tablespoons each of home made garlic paste and parsley paste
Added some ghost curry for a kick
Added 1 cup coconut milk for some extra creaminess
This soup came out awesome. A nice fall soup.

Guacamole with Chorizo Party Dip

So since I don't consume cows milk based cheeses, been looking for a replacement for queso dip with ground meat in it

  • 3 avocados
  • 1 small red onion minced
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • Key lime juice to flavor
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 lb ground pork
  • 3 tablespoons Chimayo Chorizo sausage Spice
  • 1 -2 teaspoons mixed toasted onion and garlic powder
  • Himalayan Sea Salt (or any Sea Salt) to taste
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • Tellicherry pepper salt (see the salt page)

Instructions for Guacamole:
  • Clean out the Avocados, and mix with the minced red onion mixing thoroughly (I prefer my guacamole to be smooth).
  • Fold in chopped cilantro.
  • Key Lime juice and Tellicherry pepper salt to taste.
Instructions for Chorizo:
Skip these steps if you just want to Guacamole recipe.
  • Heat up coconut oil.
  • Once oil heated up add ground meat you should hear a good sizzle.
  • Add spices and salt
  • cook approximately 5 min mixing occasionally until meat starts caramelizing.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Let meat cool. 
  • Layer the cooled meat and guacamole or fold the meat into the guacamole whichever works best for you and then eat with favorite chip or veggie.

Peruvian flavored Chicken Thighs with brussel sprouts

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on February 6, 2015

Rocoto, coriander and basil paste encrusted chicken thighs with maple syrup and telichery black pepper roasted Brussel sprouts.
Aji rocoto, basil paste and coriander paste are all available at most Latin food stores.

  • 1/2 tablespoon each basil and coriander paste
  • 2 tablespoons aji rocoto
  • 3 tablespoons coconut milk
  • Whole chicken thighs with skin and bones
  • Bag of Brussel sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • Tellicherry black pepper salt (see salt page)
  • Mix the basil and coriander paste, aji rocoto paste, and coconut milk together
  • Marinate the chicken thighs in the resulting paste for an hour.
  • Cook thighs in oven for 1 hour at 400.
  • While chicken cooking:
    • Clean Brussel sprouts and half them.
    • With roughly 15 minutes left on the chicken:
      • Heat up 1 tablespoon coconut oil in pan and drop in Brussel sprouts.
      • Sprinkle lightly with tellicherry black pepper salt to taste
      • Cook 5 minutes
      • add in two tablespoons pure maple syrup
      • cook on high for 2 minutes.  Continuously stirring.
      • The Brussel sprouts should soak the syrup up completely. 

Chicharrones de chancho (Fried Pork)

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on February 9, 2015

  • 2 lbs pork. Spare ribs and cheaper cuts with lots of fat better but can be a boneless pork roast
  • Cut meat roughly and marinate in aji marisol, roasted granulated garlic and onion and salt for 4 hours.
  • When ready to cook ready a hot pan with couple tablespoons coconut oil and 'fry' the pork until nice and crispy but not burnt.
For sides recommend:
  • Lentils or split peas
  • With coconut rice
  • Sarsa (onions very finely sliced in lime juice with a little aji rocoto. )

Haddock and shrimp ceviche

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on March 3, 2015

  • 10 limes juiced.  (Note bottled key lime juice is a simple substitute method for this)
  • 1 red onion finely sliced
  • 1 lb haddock diced
  • 1/2 lb fresh shrimp de shelled and deveined and diced roughly if large shrimp.
  • Run boiling water over the cleaned shrimp. If you add octopus or squid do the same to them as well 
  • Put all in casserole dish and let sit 4 hours 'cooking' the fish in line juice.
  • Add pepper flakes to taste level just prior to eating. I personally use 2teaspoons of  Habanero, siracha, or ghost pepper purée I have premade.
Alternate seafood's that can be used or added:
  • Any white firm fish is usually a good substitute (tilapia as example)
  • ceviche mixto refers to using everything from mussels, octopus, squid, and other seafood.   I prefer the small octopus legs in mine, and squid cut up in fine ribbons.
Sides that are very Peruvian that you might see in restaurants:
  • Cooked Sweet potato
  • Fries
  • Peruvian corn (Choclo -- boiled or fried hard to be like beer nuts)

Pea soup

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on February 15, 2015
  • 2lbs worth of typically a Ham bone, but I got some pork neck bones from a local farmer.  Note skip this ingredient for a vegetarian friendly version.
  • 1 bag of split peas  

Instructions for Broth if not making the soup as a vegetarian split pea soup:
Skip this section completely if going for vegetarian
  • Slow and low boiled pig neck bones with Szechuan salt for 12 hours (see salt page). 
  • Cooled off the broth to fridge overnight.
  • Next day another 2-3 hours slow and low. Once the meat comes off bones take out meat and bones
Instructions for Soup:
  • Choose favorite broth and bring to heat.  
    • I use a pork based broth as that is what I prefer.  
    • A good vegetable broth makes this soup great as well.
  • slow and low boil the split peas and some fresh turmeric about 2 hours
  • Once peas fall apart immersion blend the result. 
  • Add minced meat from neck bones back in (Skip if vegetarian)
  • Add a 16 oz container if coconut milk.
  • Simmer to finish for 30 minutes. 
 This is a very cost conscious soup with 6 lbs worth of neck bones for 10$ was a great deal from local farmer. I'm only using 1/2 of the bones for this soup. The split peas were 1$ a bag.

Lettuce wrapped chicken with quick BBQ Rub

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on Feb 26, 2015
If you have 5 minutes and a cheap coffee/spice grinder make your own BBQ Rub. I like making new blends all the time so as not to get bored with the flavors.
 Ingredients for BBQ Rub: 
  • Grains of paradise
  • Ancho
  • Gaujillo
  • Brown mustard
  • Urfa
  • Aji Amarillo
  • Aleppo
  • Honey powder
  • Himalyan sea Salt
  • For spicier mix add a touch of ghost or habanero to mix.

Ingredients for Meal:
  • 5 diced small boneless/skinless chicken thighs
  • Lettuce to be used as lettuce cups/wraps
  • BBQ Rub for the chicken
  • Using a Spice/Coffee Grinder mix up the seeds and berry's and other whole dried spices for 30 seconds or until powder
  • Add powdered spices and pulse a couple times to mix thoroughly
  • Coat the diced chicken with the rub.   Any leftover rub bottle for a future meal.
  • Put a tablespoon of coconut oil and bring to heat
  • Drop in the chicken into the oil should be sizzling and cook on high continuously moving the chicken around ensuring the chicken is browned on all sides.  This should be roughly 5 minutes at high heat.
  • Deglaze pan for one minute with a splash of lime juice.
  • Put in a bowl to add to wraps as a finger food as you go.
Recommended sides to cool down the spice:
  • Homemade Gaucomole.
  • Homemade Mayo

Simple Green Salad -- Nightshade Free

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on March 3, 2015

  • 2 winter onions/scallions diced small
  • 1 small green/Granny Smith apple diced small
  • 2 small cucumbers diced small
  • 3 kiwi diced small
  • Light dusting of salt and pepper (to taste)
  • Teaspoon of Lime juice

  • 5-10 minutes of dicing.
  • Mix everything in a bowl. 
Love this flavor combination for some reason. Since I can't have tomatoes and sweet peppers anymore this is a combination that gives that same tart and sweet, crispy and smooth textures of a salad with those more normal salad items.

Salad with Mustard crusted chicken thighs

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on March 13, 2015
  • 2 boneless/skinless thighs diced roughly
  • 1 green/Granny Smith apple
  • 1/2 small/medium head lettuce
  • 3 scallions/winter onions
  • 1 teaspoon each yellow and hot oriental mustard seeds and birds of paradise seeds
  • 4-5 pieces mace (Penzeys)
  • 1 teaspoon each organic peruvian ginger and yellow curry
  • With spice grinder mix the seeds and mace for 20 seconds or until powdered.
  • Mix with ginger and curry then coat the diced chicken thighs
  • Heat up metal pan with tablespoon or so coconut oil
  • Once hot toss in the chicken and brown almost until chicharon (until the mustard based coating goes crispy but not blackened).
  • Stir occasional to fry all sides
  • While chicken cooking:
    • Dice up the onions, apples, and lettuce and mix with a light coating of red wine vinegar and Avocado oil.
  • Once chicken crispy remove from heat and cool then mix into salad and salt to taste and serve
  • You can add a grated cheese for additional flavor. I use an aged sheep's milk cheese I like.

Green PB&J Smoothie Recipe

This is one of my favorite smoothies when I want a smoothie that just tastes great and that reminds you of the flavor of a favorite meal.

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on March 31, 2015
  • Coconut milk
  • Spinach
  • Sun flour seed hearts
  • Crystallized ginger
  • Dried mulberry
  • And teaspoon of almond butter
  • Grapes fill up 3/4 of the cup.

Simple oriental chicken and bok Choy soup

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on March 31, 2015

  • 4 chicken thighs deboned and de-skinned. Chop roughly
  • Roughly 2 quarts stock (made from bones and skin of the thighs or supplemented from a stock made from a prior carcass.)
  • Szechuan salt (see salt blends post)
  • powdered Ginger (or use fresh)
  • 2-3 bokchoy heads sliced lengthwise to thickness preferred. 

Creating the Stock:
  • Place the bones and skin from the chicken thighs in roughly 3 cups water.
  • You can add a fresh piece of ginger for this stock to provide that ginger flavor.  If you do skip adding powdered ginger later
  • Low boil roughly an hour
  • Filter liquid.

  • Using a tablespoon coconut oil in a very hot pot brown up the chicken.
  • Add the stock to de glaze the pot and the spices and bring back up to slow boil 5-10 minutes ensuring that if the chicken wasn't cook in the sear that it will be now.
  • Add the bok Choy for 5-10 minutes at summer, just long enough to get some tenderness but not until they are mush.
  • Serve with soy sauce to your taste. I use a splash and I use either GF tamari or soy.

Slow cooker Rabbit and potatoes

Originally posted by me in MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on April 5, 2015
Prep about 10 minutes
cook time 4-5 hours in a slow cooker.
  • 1 approx 3 lb rabbit from local farmer...
  • 4-5 med size potatoes

Using a spice/coffee grinder to combine the following
  • a good handful whole pieces of Rosemary
  • coarse ground pink Himalayan sea salt
  • small handful of telichery black pepper berries
  • freeze dried shallot and onion pieces.
  • Grind for 30 seconds
  • add in a pinch or two of ground kaala jeera and sumac berries.
  • Pulse grinder for a few seconds to mix.
(I get all my whole spices from either my garden, local farmers, or savory spice shop)

  • Roughly chop potatoes 'stew' size.
  • Place on bottom of slow cooker with 1 cup water.
  • Sprinkle in seasoning.
  • Rub seasoning on rabbit and place on top of potatoes in slow cooker.
  • Cook on high for 1 hour, low for another 3-4. Rabbit should 'fall apart' when you try and take it out.
  • Any leftover seasoning store in a jar for another meal

Quick Vegetable StirFry

Originally posted by me in the MyWholeFoodsLife Facebook group on June 7, 2015.

So got a bit of local caught seafood from farmers market this week and some great veggies for stir frys. I am so on a stirfry kick at this time.

Here's a simple stir fry for vegetarians as well as gluten free.

  • Two handfuls of Snow peas
  • 3 small purple carrots (sub normal orange ones if you want, I love the heirloom breeds when I can get them)
  • 4 scallions roughly diced greens and all
  • Small package of mung bean sprouts
  • 1/2 cup cooked rice

For sauce/flavor:
  • 1/3 cup tamari soy sauce GF
  • 1 teaspoon madras curry from savory spice shop
  • 1/2 teaspoon each ginger, granulated garlic, four corners peppercorn and sea salt powder together.
  • Hand blend sauce together in bowl
  • Chop all veggies roughly except mung bean sprouts, I like mine roughly bite sized. Place in bowl.
  • Bring 1 tablespoon coconut oil up to high heat.
  • Dump in bowl of veggies let sauté for 1 min.
  • Add sauce and keep mixing for 1 minute.
  • Add cooked rice and turn down to low mix up everything for 2 minutes.
  • Plate a sprinkle lightly with powdered Szechuan pepper salt
  • This should make roughly two servings.

Simple duck soup

Came up with this recipe when a local farmer was selling duck at farmers market this paste weekend. So roughly 10 meals off a little less than $40 duck. 
  • 1 carcass from a 4lb duck, minus the breast and leg meat (went to other dishes)
  • 6 stalks of celery
  • 6 med size potatoes...
  • 1/2 bag of tinkyada elbow pasta
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Boil duck and celery at low boil for about 2 hours until carcass falls apart.
  • Take out carcass from broth and let cool.
  • While waiting for the carcass to cool
    • chop up the potatoes roughly and toss in the broth.
    • Taste broth and add flavoring appropriately to your taste.
    • Cook 5 minutes at low boil and add the tinkyada pasta 
    • boil another 15 minutes per directions for the pasta.
  • Strip any remaining meat off carcass, should be a little under a lb worth.
  • Add the duck meat back in last 5 minutes.
  • Made 5 complete servings and a sixth serving that is just broth to be used by another meal in future.

Egg Drop soup

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeRecipes Facebook group on September 23, 2014

Had a want for egg drop soup and not trusting the local restaurants on GlutenFree preparations decide to make a simple home version.
  • 2 cups chicken broth (made from bones and carcass of chicken dinners)
  • 4 chicken thighs skin and bones ...
  • 4-6 cups water (enough to cover)
  • 1 red onion
  • 4 eggs
  • GF soy sauce
  • Toasted sesame oil
  • 3 small Bok Choy
  • Cut up the red onion to chunks and place in pot with the bones and skins from the chicken thighs and enough water to cover. Roiling boil for 1 hour.
  • Filter out the thighs and onions leaving the broth and if needed add the extra broth from a previous chicken broth and bring back to boil for 10 min to reduce a little.
  • While waiting for the broth to boil:
    • Separate the yolks and whites of 4 eggs
    • Mince the meat of the chicken.
  • Add the add sesame oil, Bok Choy and minced chicken meat to the broth and reduce heat to low boil for 5 minutes.
  • Add in the egg whites stirring softly 3 min.
  • Add in yolks and stir softly another 2.
  • Add soy sauce to taste and enjoy.

Pepperoni and cheddar cheese with naan style paleo pizza crust

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeRecipes Facebook group on August 1, 2014

Prep time 5 min
Cook time 20 min
  • 1/2 cup almond or cashew meal
  • 1/2 cup tapioca starch/flour
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/3 package of boarshead mini pepperoni
  • 1/2 cube of smoked goat cheddar cheese

Crust Instructions:
  • Mix the almond/cashew meal with tapioca starch/flour.
  • Add spices to this mix if you want. I add toasted garlic and turmeric.
  • Spice to taste.
  • Add the coconut milk and mix until completely combined. This should result in a pancake like consistency. Add more tapioca starch or coconut milk in small quantities until a thick pancake mixture consistency.
  • Pour onto a pizza stone and spread thin.  Note that I put a parchment paper down to reduce cleanup later.
  • Place in oven. 400 for 15 min.
  • Take out and if any bubbles formed pop them and flatten.

Pizza Instructions:
  • Spread the shredded cheese and sliced pepperoni on the bread.
  • Place back in oven for another 5-10 minutes at 425.
  • Serve warm. The pepperoni is a little oily but this naan style crust was still pull apart awesome.

Steak and garlic mashed potatoes

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeRecipes Facebook group on September 28, 2014

Simple meal proving not everything has to be complicated

  • 2 steaks
  • 3 red potatoes
  • 1/2 med size parsnip
  • 4 med size shallots
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Salt, pepper and garlic powder
  • Butter
  • Coconut milk
  • Coconut oil

  • Skin and rough chop the potatoes drop in pot of water
  • Skin and finely chop parsnip and drop in with potatoes
  • Cook at med heat for 15-20 until parsnips and potatoes are soft to fork.
  • While potatoes cooking:
    • Finely cut the shallots into ribbons.
    • Put in pan with tablespoon coconut oil.
    • Cook a med until starting to become clear.
    • Add in balsamic to cover and continue cooking until balsamic reduces to thick glaze and remove from heat.
    • The timing should have the potatoes coming off the stove while the balsamic is still reducing.
  • Place steaks lightly salted and peppered onto pan on the burner you took potatoes off. Cook 3-5 minutes per side depending on thickness. I shoot for med-rare.
  • While steak is cooking:
    • Drain water from potatoes
    • Mash with butter, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
    • Add a little coconut milk just enough to add some moisture to the mashed potatoes.
  • Put steak on plate let sit for 5 minutes while you place the mashed potatoes on the plate and drizzle the balsamic glazed shallots over the potatoes.

Simple Rustic Chicken Heart Stew

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeRecipes Facebook group on September 1, 2014

  • 1/2 lb chicken hearts
  • 2 Yukon gold potatoes chopped into rough steak fries
  • 1-2 shallots finely chopped...
  • 2 tablespoons Cilantro/garlic paste ( if need recipe to make paste ask and I can post)
  • Add shallots to hot oil in small pot.
  • Sweat for 2 minutes
  • Add washed hearts and cook about 5 minutes.
  • Add paste and cook 2 minutes.
  • Add potatoes
  • Add enough water to cover all ingredients.
  • Turn down heat to medium low and cook for 30 minutes stirring occasionally until potatoes fall apart easily

Simple tuna or Salmon salad

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeRecipes Facebook group on May 26, 2014

  • 1 can/pouch of tuna/salmon drained unless in oil then use oil for dressing
  • 1 small shallot diced finely
  • 1 small pickling cucumber diced finely
  • 1/2 stalk celery (I skip this because I don't like celery)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Mix everything together roughly trying not to completely mash out the tuna.
Suggested sides and notes:
  • Eat on bread or make a handful of pasta to make a small pasta salad.
  • This is a quick lunch I make a couple times a week during summer months. It's light and no mayo to go bad it's safe to take out for picnic.

German potato salad

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeRecipes Facebook group on May 26, 2014

  • 4 large baking potatoes
  • 4 shallots (small to med size -- to taste)
  • 2-3 tablespoons Apple cider vinegar
  • 2-3 slices of bacon.  Completely optional if vegetarian. 
  • Spices for flavor. My favorites are lemon pepper and salt. Alternately Hungarian sweet paprika, pepper and salt.
  • Brown up the bacon until crispy.  Whatever your favorite method and put to side until cool on paper-towels.   Skip this step if vegetarian.
  • Boil the potatoes in the skin for roughly an hour. Stick a fork in them and if it goes in without resistance they are done.
  • Let the potatoes cool for 5-10 minutes
  • Peel the potatoes when still warm don't worry if they crumble a little.
  • Place peeled potatoes in a bowl and chop loosely.
  • Add the apple cider vinegar, finely minced shallots, and spices to the potatoes.
  • Pour a few tablespoons of boiling water over it all
  • Mix quickly before the potatoes soak up all the liquid.

  • Serve warm or cold. For me tastes better if it's had an hour in the refrigerator to cool off and of course as leftovers.  
  • This is typically a side to grilling for me, but could be a side to any meal.
  • Recipe feeds about 10-15 servings as a side
  • Since no Mayo this can be safe for a warm day of grilling.
  • Depending on what part of Germany you come from mustard may be added for a different flavor profile.

Paleo Bread

 Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on November 10, 2014

So been tweaking with a recipe I originally took from Elena's pantry site. Her recipe was for a much smaller bread pan then what I had. I also wanted a bread which would work for grilled cheese as well as sandwiches. Here's the latest copy modified to my tastes. Hope this helps someone else looking for a bread they aren't sure how to make.


This bread will come out a little heavy, like the consistency of a German rye style bread.  It will hold up to making grilled cheese, sandwiches, and most anything else you will through at it.

Mini GF pizza bites

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on September 11, 2014

  • 4-5 slices from my simple paleo bread recipe
  • Goats milk smoked cheddar cheese 
  • Goats milk mozzarella cheese...
  • Boars head turkey pepperoni   Omit this ingredient if you want to avoid meat)
  • Sprinkling of roasted garlic powder
  • Take the slices of bread and put on parchment paper.
  • Sprinkle with roasted garlic powder.
  • Place shredded or thinly sliced cheddar, topped with the pepperoni slices, topped with mozzarella.
  • Place in over 300 for approx 10-15 minutes or until all cheese melts.
Notes and Substitution Ideas:
  • I was lazy and didn't feel like making my normal pizza dough. Figured I'd try something new
  • You can sub out all the cheeses with vegan cheeses and sub out the meat with a vegan meat substitute, and sub out the bread (since that recipe contained eggs) for a vegan bread and this can be a turned into a vegan meal.

Simple fish dinner with rice

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on August 16, 2014

10 minutes active cook and prep time 40 minutes of waiting for rice to be cooked.  Serves 2

For rice:
  • 1/2 cup Lundberg jubilee GF rice
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 leek
  • 10 Brussel sprouts
For fish:
  • 2 tilapia
  • Almond meal
  • Favorite fish seasoning ( I like something called cloud peak I get from savory spice shop. Old bay also won't go wrong. )
  • Mix rice, water and butter and bring to boil.
  • Following package direction reduce heat to low and cook 40 minutes.
  • Let stand 10 additional.
  • While rice is cooking:
    • Finely chop leek and brussel sprouts into thin ribbons.
    • In a bag mix almond meal and seasoning. Place fish in bag and shake until coated.
  • While rice is standing:
    • Place the leek and Brussel sprouts in hot pan with oil.
    • Salt and pepper to taste.
    • Cook about 5 minutes at low med heat until browning/caramelization starts.
    • Mix in rice and cook 1 additional minute while mixing well.
    • Place coated fish in hot pan after rice is done and cooling with favorite cooking oil (I use Coconut oil) and brown about 3 minutes per side.

Simple summer salad with fruit

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on August 10, 2014

  • 1 cucumber diced small
  • Scallions to taste diced small
  • 3 golden kiwis (like green ones but with golden flesh these are sweeter) diced small...
  • 1 apple diced small
  • 1 small pear diced small
  • Lime or lemon juice to keep fruit fresh
  • Favorite oil (lately mine is avocado)
  • Salt and pepper
Mix all ingredients in bowl sprinkle with lime or lemon juice and favorite salad oil. S&P to taste.

Simple quick veggie omelet

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on August 13, 2014

5 min prep. 5-10 min cook. Cook times may vary slightly depending on pan type and stove heat.
  • 1 leek...
  • 1 medium size summer squash
  • 3 eggs I prefer duck eggs when I can get them.
  • 2 tablespoons cultured coconut (sour cream or milk)
  • 2 slices of cheese (my preference is smoked goats milk cheddar. )
  • Beat eggs, and cultured coconut, salt&pepper and spices.
  • Dice leek and squash small.
  • Place in hot pan with 2 tablespoons coconut oil.
  • Cook 3 min on high.
  • Pour beaten eggs into pan over leek and squash.
  • Flip omelet when ready (should take 1-2 minute on high looking for browning edges and firming of the eggs)
  • Place the cheese on the cooked side and cook about 1-2 more minutes.

Simple salad

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on August 11, 2014

Prep time 5 min
  • 1 cucumber diced
  • 1 apple (For taste I prefer the Granny Smith) diced
  • 1-5 winter onions depending on size diced
  • 2 small red radishes diced
  • 1/5 of a small red cabbage diced
  • 1 can of tuna  Omit this ingredient if vegetarian)
  • Mix onions, radishes, and apple first mixing with lime or lemon juice then dice the rest.
  • Add the tuna and Mix well with salt and pepper.
Some subs or additions:
  • If no issues with tomatoes add some.
  • Also any good crumbly cheese works (Goat or Sheeps Milk Cheese for me) if the tuna is left out.
  • Instead of apple a strong pear works as well. Danjou or Asian pear best so far.  You can have both pear and apple as well as kiwi.
  • To extend the salad you can add a lettuce like Romaine Hearts, Iceberg.  I prefer the crisper lettuces personally.

Ghost curry chicken thighs with roasted garlic and turmeric naan:

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on July 26, 2014
I posted my basic paleo style naan recipe. So take that basic almond, tapioca starch and coconut recipe and add powdered roasted garlic and turmeric spices mix well. 

  • 1 boneless/skinless chicken thigh
  • 2 small shallots
  • Ghost curry spice mix
  • Turmeric
  • Charnushka
  • 2 teaspoons of cashew meal
  • Roughly 2 cups coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • Chop chicken thigh meat in small cubes and mix with curry, turmeric and charnushka until the cubes are coated and dry
  • Chop the shallots loosely and toss into a pan with coconut oil at med to med high for roughly 2 minutes until they start getting soft.
  • Add in coated chicken cook roughly 5 min.
  • Add coconut milk and cook another 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the cashew meal and cook until the sauce gets thickened.
Serve in bowl and eat with pieces of naan.
Could add a cup of rice to turn into a two person meal. If for two double the chicken and naan.

Dirty rice

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on July 24, 2014

  • 3 leeks diced
  • 1small fennel diced
  • 1 leftover cooked chicken breast diced
  • Ghost curry and salt to taste
  • Roughly 1 cup of coconut milk
  • 1 cup leftover rice
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • Place leeks and fennel in pan with 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • Season with ghost curry and salt
  • Cook until leeks and fennel start getting translucent. Roughly 5 minutes.
  • Add in diced chicken, rice and corn.
  • Cook 1 additional minute.
  • Add the coconut milk and cook until it's all absorbed
  • Make vegetarian by removing any meat products
  • Any left over meat, and any veggie that you liked cooked can be subbed in to add variety to this simple meal.

Smelt and Shrimp fish soup

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on May 24, 2014

  • 1/2 lb wild caught smelt...
  • 1/2 lb Argentinian pink shrimp
  • 4 med red potatoes
  • 1/2 yellow onion
  • 2 teaspoons habanero paste
  • Old bay seasoning, 3 bay leaves, salt
  • 1 container GF Medford veggie stock/broth
  • 1 cup cooked rice
  • Cook the onions in the old bay, salt, and habenaro paste with some oil.
  • Once onions translucent put in the shrimp shells and stock and cook for 30 minutes to make the stock.
  • Take out the shells and put in the potatoes cubed.
  • Cook for 10 -20 minutes until potatoes almost done.
  • Add the cleaned shrimp and smelt and cook for 10 minutes.
  • Pour over some rice prepared ahead of time and enjoy.

Gluten Free Spaetzle

Originally posted by me in GlutenFreeFoodandRecipes Facebook group on May 16, 2014

This is a quick side dish of German noodles called spaetzle. Spaetzle are German noodles that have an easy recipe.

Took 20 minutes total from when I started making the mix to serve to table.   

  • Roughly 1/2 cup ap flour GF
  • 1 med egg
  • enough water to get the mix to pancake flour consistency.

  • Beat egg for a min.
  • Add the flour and mix.
  • Keep adding water in small amounts until pancake consistency reached.
  • Set aside for a moment.
  • Get a large pot boiling water with plenty of salt in it. 
  • Using a potato ricer, med size strainer, or spaetzle press press out the mix into the roiling boil water. 
  • Cook for 1-2 min until they start to float. 
  • Using slotted spoon or fryer skimmer take out the noodles
  • place immediately in hot pan with either 1-2 tablespoons coconut oil or butter
  • Cook 1-2 more minutes cook time at high.    
Substitutions and add-ins:
  • I Love bacon and putting those noodles in hot bacon grease, obviously this is not for vegetarians.
  • various veggies like mushrooms, leaks, red cabbage, Caramelized onions, shredded Brussel sprouts are options.
  • Cook the veggies or bacon first and put noodles with them for those last couple minutes.
  • Substitutions here are endless.
  • Changing the flavor of the noodles themselves:   Spinach and veggie juices for water for flavor and color. Almond milk is also a sub for water

Slow roasted rabbit with cauliflower, potatoes, and rice

Bought a fresh rabbit, never frozen, from farmers market this weekend.  Came up with this recipe to celebrate the find.



  • Take rabbit and oil, ACV, and Oregon trail spice blend and put in a plastic sealable bag.
  • Marinate for 1-3 hours. 
  • Roughly chop potatoes
  • place on bottom of casserole dish and almost cover with water.  
  • Place rabbit on top and pour the marinade over the rabbit.  
  • Place casserole dish in oven and cook at 320 for 1 1/2 hours covered.  
  • Toward the end of this time turn up the temperature to 425 and uncover for 20-30 minutes.  
    • For the last cook cycle of rabbit rough chop the head of cauliflower and place in pan with 1/2 cup of water and 1 tablespoon of oil and dust lightly with salt and pepper for 20 minutes.   Stirring occasionally to lightly brown all sides.  
    • In rice cooker heat up 1 tablespoon coconut oil.  Add one cup rice combine with the heated oil and then add the water and a light dusting of telichery salt and pepper blend.  

Serves 4.  Recommend layering the rice then the potatoes and liquid from the roasted rabbit and potatoes and a piece of the rabbit. 

Spicy unfiltered apple cider vinegar

I make this every so often.   This vinegar I use for a number of things, but one of the best uses is for flavoring meals that require a spicy vinegar.

  • Braggs unfiltered/raw Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 whole Ghost Peppers
  • 1 small horse radish root (roughly hand sized)
  • 1 piece of fresh ginger root (roughly hand sized)
  • 1 piece of fresh turmeric root (roughly hand sized)
  • Take out out 1/4 of the vinegar from the bottle, try and place as many of the ingredients as whole as possible in the bottle.   Replace vinegar until full.  Place any leftover into another closable bottle for use.
  • Let sit for a few months (as much as 6 if you can wait).
  • Remove the ingredients from the vinegar, should now have some good flavor and kick.

Some people believe that this is a good vinegar to add to teas to assist with removing colds.  I keep it around for that for more personal use but use it for many recipes for additional flavor kick when Apple Cider Vinegar is called for.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015


I wanted to start a resources page to assist people in finding the spices and ingredients I use in my recipes.   I will continue to update this page as I get questions about specific items and as I think of a good place and or product that I have found crucial in making my life easier.
First:  Most of my grocery budget is spent at the local famers, though I do occasionally shop at traditional grocery stores to supplement what I can get from the local famers especially during the winter months where famers markets are limited. 
Second: All of my spices come from two places. 
  • Savory Spice Shop (http://www.savoryspiceshop.com/), for local folks in NC the storefront is located in Lafayette Village.
  • local Latin American, Indian, and Asian markets for ingredients not found in normal grocery stores.  
All my ground spices all from savory spice shop because I know their Gluten Free Spices and occasional dried whole chilis or canned pastes or whole chiles come from various local markets based on the culture purchased from.
Do not be afraid to make your own spice blends.   I buy bulk whole spices as well as ground base spices which I then turn into my own blends that I use for my meals.   I will share those as I continue blogging.

Other Resources:
As much as I love to cook from scratch,  I also love to go out and eat and try food at restaurants.   To that end, I post reviews on Yelp, Foursquare, and Find me GF on local restaurants that have GF options or whole menus that are Gluten Free.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Large multi-day cookout for more than 7 people

I had family over for the past week and during the week the following simple recipes were used to feed the 7 people that were here.  I also ended up with plenty of leftovers.

So first day was a massive BBQ where we made:
So A couple days later we made - Ceviche:
I took and modified this recipe (http://drummingupabettermeal.blogspot.com/2015/06/haddock-and-shrimp-ceviche.html) to make a ceviche for everyone to enjoy: 
  • 6 Tilapia instead of the haddock and shrimp. 
  • One smaller batch included some heat for flavor replacing the lighter tasting pepper flakes
    • 1 whole habanero, diced as small as possible.  Flesh only no seeds
    • A healthy dash or two of Aji Amarillo
A couple of sides for these meals were:
  • Cauliflower - quick boil
  • Sweet potatoes - boiled
  • brussel sprouts
  • rice
Breakfasts made out of the leftovers:
  • Quick hash from small diced potatoes fried on stove with thinly sliced beef heart pieces, chicken thighs, and/or sausage leftovers
  • Scrambled Eggs + pieces of heart or sausage quickly warmed up on stove
  • Boiled eggs + leftovers

Rice Pudding

Rice pudding is one of my favorite desserts.  Many cultures have a unique way of making it.  I will list some of the alternates below.

  • 2 cups rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 can of goats milk  (or evaporated milk)
  • 1 can of condensed milk
  • 1 cup coconut sugar (to taste, only add as much as needed)
  • 1-2 pieces of cinnamon
  • 5 whole clove buds
  • handful raisins
  • Combine Rice, Water, cinnamon pieces, clove buds, and raisins and bring water to boil.
  • Reduce to simmer until water mostly gone
  • Add the milks and keep simmering
  • Add the sugar to taste as you keep simmering
Serving Instructions:
  • In Peru and a couple other cultures rice pudding is served warm with a light sprinkling of cinnamon
  • I like this both warm and cold, and both with a medium sprinkling of cinnamon.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

BBQ spice blends I love

These are my BBQ blends I love to use when smoking, grilling, or just cooking on the stove when I want a BBQ flavor.

Smokey BBQ blend:
  • Crushed Urfa
  • Aleppo Red Pepper
  • Freeze Dried Scallion
  • Roasted Garlic Powder
  • Toasted Onion Powder
  • Alderwood sea salt
  • Honey Powder
Spicy BBQ Rub:
  • Szechuan seeds
  • Aleppo Red Pepper
  • Crushed Urfa
  • Guajillo Powder
  • Ancho Powder
  • 4 corners peppercorns
  • tellicherry peppercorns
  • Garlic and Onion Powder
  • Fine Pink Himalayan Sea Salt
  • Powdered Ghost Pepper
  • Hot Oriental Mustard Seeds

Bison boneless ribeye with garlic mashed potatoes

This was a special meal I planned.  Bison steaks are not cheap cuts but they are steakhouse quality at 1/2 the steakhouse price.  This meal for 2 was less than $40.


  • 1 medium red onion
  • 2 large yellow potatoes
  • 2 1/2 lb bison boneless rib eye steaks
  • 1 package brussel sprouts
  • Salt and pepper
  • Smoky BBQ Blend (blend is in the BBQ Spice blends I love posting)
  • Garlic salt blend
  • Black telichery pepper blend
  • Balsamic vinegar 
  • Lime juice


  • Peel and roughly chop potatoes and boil for 20 minutes or until fork tender
  • While the potatoes are boiling, chop the red onion by cutting in half and making ribbons.  Place in a pan with 1 tablespoons of coconut oil and a sprinkle of salt. 
  • cook the onions at low heat until they start to caramelize. 
  • While onions and potatoes are cooking clean the brussel sprouts and put the rub on the meat.  
  • Toss brussel sprouts in pan with 1 tablespoon coconut oil.  They will need 10 minutes at medium. 
  • Place steaks in a very hot pan 4 min each side (mine were roughly inch+ thick). I shoot for Medium-rare. 
  • While the steaks are cooking 
    • Deglaze the pan of onions with balsamic vinegar at high heat reducing vinegar to sticky sauce
    • Deglaze the pan of brussel sprouts with lime juice at high heat
    • Mash potatoes with a pat of butter, garlic and onion powder and salt and pepper

Serve and enjoy.