Saturday, November 14, 2009

Gluten-free Buckwheat Pancakes

When I created my Gluten-free Quinoa Pancake Recipe, I promised to give you a variation on it soon. That was six months ago. Since then I have been diligently trying to come up with a new twist on the recipe. Well, here is my variation:

Substitute 1/2 cup of buckwheat flour for the 1/2 cup of quinoa flour.

Why did that take me six months to figure out, when I was pretty sure that it would work from the beginning?

Buckwheat is a fairly complicated foodstuff. It can be processed and milled in a variety of ways before it hits the shelf. I was trying to manipulate this recipe using a buckwheat flour that I wasn't familiar with, and which had a completely different consistency and grind than what I was used to. The flour kept absorbing too much of the liquid, producing a gummy, thick batter that was nearly impossible to cook. I ended up switching to Bob's Red Mill Organic Buckwheat Flour, even though it is not one of their specially processed "certified gluten-free" flours. So, for those worried about cross-contamination with wheat flour this may not be the flour for you. However, it is a flour that behaves as it should. I also used this brand of flour in my Buckwheat Waffles Recipe and my Quick Buckwheat Waffle Recipe.

What kind of buckwheat flour do you buy? Any tips on finding one that's certified gluten-free?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Oxtail Soup Recipe

The trick to cooking a good oxtail soup is to cook it long and slow. Braising the meat in this manner makes it very tender, and the bones make for a great broth in this hearty soup. This is the perfect food for the season.

Oxtail Soup

In a large stock pot or Dutch oven, heat:

2 Tbsp Olive oil


3 cloves garlic, whole
1/2 carrot

1 bunch green onions, chopped (reserve some for garnish)

Brown in the pot on all sides:

2.75 lbs oxtail

Deglaze the pan with:

1 1/2 cup white wine


12 Cups warm water
5 large leaves of kale

1 tsp whole peppercorns
2 sticks celery, chopped

a rind of Parmesan (optional)

5 leaves fresh sage

3 tsp salt

Cook on a low simmer for several hours, skimming off any impurities on the surface, and stirring occasionally until the meat is very tender. When the soup is nearly done, remove the oxtails and strain the liquid through a fine-mesh sieve or some cheesecloth. Put the liquid and the oxtails back in the pot and heat to a simmer. Add:

1 bunch kale
3 potatoes, cut in 1/2 inch slices

1/2 carrot

2 cloves garlic

ground pepper to taste

Cook for 20 minutes or until potatoes are done but still firm. Test the soup for seasonings. Garnish with your reserved green onions, and serve hot.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Gluten-free "Wit" Beer at Deschutes Brewery?

Update: They are again pouring the Gluten-free Krystal Weiss at Deschutes. I'll update you when I have more news.

I don't know anything yet except that I have a previously unknown gluten-free beer in my growler.

I went to Deschutes Brewery in Portland today to see if there was any news on a new gluten-free beer. My server Briggs did some extensive legwork for me, but he was unable to ascertain a definitive name, style, or description for the gluten-free beer that he served me. All I could gather was that they appeared to have run out of the Gluten-free Krystal Weiss as they were pouring my pint. They gave me the last glass from the cask and then poured me some gluten-free beer of a different kind. It is still too early to say if it's an entirely different beer than the Weiss; there was a theory afloat that the "new" beer was just an unfiltered version of the Krystal Weiss. At any rate I enjoyed the change of pace and will reaveal more details as they unfold.
On the left: Gluten-free Krystal Weiss. Center: Mystery (Wit?) Beer with arms. Right: Wasser.

Tomorrow is Deschutes Brewery's release of the The Abyss Imperial Stout. The good people of Deschutes will be busy over there, so I will not be surprised if I don't find out any more details for a few days regarding this highly important gluten-free matter. If anyone else knows anything, please leave a comment!