Gluten-free Dairy-free Egg-free Focaccia inspired by Amy’s Kitchen

March 6th, 2012 yum Posted in Amy's Kitchen, Bread, Breastfeeding for Allergic Baby Recipe, Brown Rice, Dairy Free, Egg Free, Soy Free, Sugar free, Sunflower seed, Vegan 16 Comments »


I have a little addiction. It is to the Amy’s Kitchen kid’s meal with the ziti pasta with the fake cheese and a little bit of broccoli and focaccia and the apple cobbler serving. I know, I know, I’m not a kid, but it is relatively low in calories and I just can’t get enough of it. They also just came out with a new kid’s meal with gluten-free rice mac and cheese, broccoli, and that same apple cobbler. However, those frozen kids meals are an expensive little vice for a graduate student mommy with a mortgage. I was thinking about it, and although I do love the pasta, the real draw for me is that little bread square tucked in between the pasta and the apple pie. I just love the faintly nutty, brown rice flavor of the stuff and the fluffiness of it when I rescue it from the microwave and let the rest of the meal cook.

I am thrilled by Toddler Yum’s new school, and it seems to be really good for her. She has friends, learns fun things and gets to try all sorts of new activities. She comes home literally singing, and little tidbits that she has learned leak out in between her toddler chatter. Last month she learned the days of the week in a cheery little song. Last night at the dinner table, she started belting out the months. She told me buenas noches with no prompting, out of the blue. It seems like a great environment and fit for my active little social bunny.

Unfortunately that great environment comes with a silicon valley price tag. We have her at half days, but it still gives our budget pause. Add on to that property taxes, graduate school fees, and utility bills and it ends up hurting a little bit. So, I have sworn off pricey convenience meals for a bit, and that includes those tasty Amy’s Kitchen meals. I decided that a tight budget was no reason to go without my focaccia! I peered at the back of the Amy’s kitchen box for ingredients, consulted with some favorite vegan cookbooks like Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook, and started baking up a storm. I made two versions of this recipe, and this one was my favorite. It was not quite as fluffy as the Amy’s version, but it still was strangely addictive. It also passed the DH test, who said that it was yummy and gobbled it down without any resistance. I loved it plain, with earth balance margarine, and used in sandwiches with a baba ghanoush, avocado and lettuce filling. By the way, the avocado came from the tree in our backyard. I just love free avocados! And the lettuce came straight out of our winter garden. California living has its perks!

I may be fooling around with this recipe some more, but I love the flavor. Honestly, I’m a rice girl at heart. I just love the nuttiness of brown rice flour tempered by a little white rice. And the sunflower meal is a very good alternative to the ever-popular almond flour. It gives great flavor, a little punch of protein, and does some good things to the texture too. I think I’ll be using it in more of my recipes in the future. Hope you enjoy!

Dairy-free Egg-free Focaccia Bread
Ingredients
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup white rice flour
1 cup tapioca starch flour
1/4 cup corn flour (can substitute millet flour, sorghum, or brown rice flour)
1/4 cup ground roasted unsalted sunflower seed meal (i made it in my spice grinder)
1/4 cup potato starch flour (can sub arrowroot or cornstarch)
1/4 cup cornstarch (can sub arrowroot or potato starch)
1 tsp. salt

3 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp agave/maple syrup/honey
1 1/4 cup warm water
1 tbsp. yeast

for topping:
your favorite dairy-free milk or olive oil
Bouquet garni or onion flakes/ caramelized onions
coarse salt

Directions
Line a square cake pan with parchment paper and baste sides with palm oil shortening or other preferred oil. Preheat oven to 375F.

Mix together dry ingredients in your kitchenaid mixer. Note on the sunflower seed meal- I cleaned my spice grinder by running a batch of white rice through it before I made the sunflower seed meal. You could also try using the small section of your food processor for grinding the meal.

Put your tablespoon of liquid sweetener (agave, maple syrup etc) in a small bowl. Add your warm water and your yeast. Combine gently and wait for it to foam. Add to your dry ingredients along with olive oil. Mix with the paddle for a few minutes, and then pour into your prepared pan. Baste top with a little olive oil or your favorite non-dairy plain milk. Sprinkle with bouquet garni herbs or onion topping.

Bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Serve and enjoy!

Notes
Great for sandwiches when cut in half. Microwave individual servings for 10-15 seconds to refresh the next day.
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Gluten-free Coconut Sugar Sweetened Apricot Cobbler Recipe

July 20th, 2011 yum Posted in Baked Goods, Dairy Free, Dessert, Egg Free, JM friendly, Local Food Movement, Nut Free, Rice Free, Sorghum, Sugar free, Vegetarian, apricot, cobbler, fruit, low-sugar 9 Comments »


Welcome back to Cobbler Week at the Book of Yum! This time I’m doing a recipe geared towards those who prefer not to use processed sugar and dairy. I’ll tell you a secret, though. Even though this recipe is allergy-friendly, uses special coconut sugar and contains no dairy, it was met with unbridled enthusiasm from gluten-eaters who can eat any darned thing they like. My Dad who is visiting us right now has fond memories of a neighbor lady’s apricot cobbler that he ate when he was a child. He said this recipe made him feel like a seven-year-old again, knocking at the door of his neighbor’s house asking for cobbler. I never thought I liked apricots that much, but somehow these large, golden fruits fresh off our own tree taste different than they do in the supermarket, and even I gobbled up this cobbler. The DH preferred it over the plum cobbler, and we were all fighting for the last piece. If you don’t have coconut sugar in your pantry, never fear. You can substitute ordinary sugar, but you might want to decrease the amounts in that case. I like coconut sugar because it has a neutral flavor reminiscent of a less sweet brown or raw sugar and gives a mild sweetness to your recipe. After all, apricots are pretty sweet all by themselves.

It is funny the things that having fruit trees change. I dehydrated apricots for the first time, and the DH made apricot freezer jam, and I made this cobbler. And we still have a table covered in apricots. I’m thinking we’ll have to make another cobbler… or two. And maybe even freeze one, if I can pry it away from my Dad and the DH.

I have a fondness for this apricot tree because it was the tree that dropped its leaves on the day Neko left us. And now, every year we enjoy the fruits from this tree, I can remember him.
Look for my Mr Linky on Friday, and add your recipe links for your favorite gluten-free cobbler, pies, and crumbles then!
In case you also have more apricots than you know what to do with, here are some recipes to inspire:
Agave Apricot Quick Bread Recipe (Ratio Rally)
Gluten-free Apricot Power Bar Recipe
Dairy-free Apricot Carob Blondies Recipe
Nutty Apricot Ball Recipe
Apricot Salad Dressing
Crockpot Brie with Apricot Topping Recipe
Apricot Glazed Roasted Brussels Sprouts Recipe
Apricot Butter Recipe

This recipe shared with Diane’s Real Food Weekly Roundup

Coconut Sugar Sweetened Apricot Cobbler
Ingredients
1/2 C coconut sugar or regular white sugar (add more if your apricots are under-ripe)
6 C fresh apricots
3 tbsp. cornstarch or arrowroot starch
1 tbsp. butter or vegan margarine (optional)
1 tsp. almond flavoring
1/2 tsp. vanilla

3/4 C sorghum flour
1/4 C potato starch, arrowroot or corn starch
1/2 C tapioca starch
1 1/2 tbs coconut sugar or regular white sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
5 tbsp. palm oil shortening
1/2 C milk (dairy-free milk is fine)

coconut sugar or raw sugar for garnish

Directions
Get a deep, ceramic pie pan out of the cupboard and preheat oven to 350F.

Pit your apricots and cut into bit sized wedges and place into a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle with cornstarch, flavoring and sugar and fold in so they are evenly distributed. Melt your butter or margarine and gently fold into the apricot mixture. Reserve. If you like you can pour this apricot mixture into your pie pan and use the bowl for the cobbler.

Combine your flours, starches, sugar, salt and baking powder in a bowl. Cut in your palm oil shortening with a fork, pastry cutter, or (my personal favorite) your fingers. When the shortening has been worked into the flour and you have a crumbly texture of dough, fold in your milk. Spoon your biscuit mixture on top of the apricots in your pie pan, sprinkle the top with coconut sugar or raw sugar for sparkle, and bake at 350f for around 35 minutes or until cobbler turns a light golden brown and seems firm on top.

Enjoy with a dairy-free vanilla ice cream or plain. Delicious!

Notes
Cobbler runnier than you like? Store it in the refrigerator and the filling will set up.
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