Tag Archives: Gluten Free

mrspcuyugan

Cookbook of the Month: Paleo Italian Cooking

One day, I was sitting on my sofa, and I noticed just how many cookbooks I’ve accumulated over the years. Confession: I hardly ever use them for cooking. I browse through them every once in a while, but I usually search the internet when I need a recipe because that’s just easier to do.

Thing is, I went through something recently that helped convince me that less is really more. So I am slowly but surely, and as aggressively as I can be (given that I’m really a hoarder at heart,) purging. Yes, it’s true. And yes, I will really see this purge through until the end. (Really, MrC, really. I know you are super skeptical about this.)

 

New cookbooks, yay!!! Thank you, @tuttlepublishing, for making my day! #tuttlepublishing #cookbooks

A photo posted by MrsC | Patricia Cuyugan (@mrspcuyugan) on

So now my attention is focused on my cookbooks. Honestly, I don’t know which ones I should keep, and which can go. I don’t think that I’ll be able to decide until I actually try a few recipes from each of them, though, because that’s the only way that I can pick objectively. Right? It’s a slow process, but I really feel like I need to do it. 

And so, from now on I’ll be featuring a cookbook of the month right here on the blog. Along with the review, I plan on including a recipe from the book; One that I made at home and absolutely loved. If I don’t end up liking what I tried from the book, then obviously there’s no room for it in my blog or on my book shelf. Period.

This month’s cookbook is Paleo Italian Cooking by Cindy Barbieri, which was given to me by the lovely people over at Tuttle Publishing. I was excited about this cookbook from day one because I’ve been worried that going gluten-free would mean saying goodbye to Italian food. This cookbook brought hope to my kitchen and my tummy. And I’m super happy to share that it did not disappoint.

mrspcuyugan
Gluten-free Italian recipes? Yes, please!

 

I’ve read the entire book from cover to cover. Yes, all the forewords, introductions, ingredients, procedures, tips, footnotes, and photo captions. I love that the author shares little bits and pieces about her life all over the book, and how each recipe represents a memory, a loved one, the author’s home, and her personality. I kinda feel like I know her already.

The book is divided into helpful chapters, making it super easy to find the recipes that you want. There are chapters for sauces and condiments, brunch (which is awesome!), meat, seafood, pasta, and a lot more. Yes guys, there are pasta recipes in this paleo/gluten-free cookbook. Told you we have a winner here.

One of my favorite sections is the one about keeping your Italian kitchen paleo. It’s taken a lot of research, and a whole lot of stopping to read at grocery aisles for me to transform my pantry into a functioning gluten-free one. So the fact that this cookbook explains the basics of the paleo lifestyle, and what you need to have in order to cook for that diet, is a huge help to me.

mrspcuyugan
Tip: Always, always, always read a recipe from start to finish before you start cooking. Trust me.

 

And now, the most important part, the recipes. The ingredients and procedures in each recipe are clearly stated and easy to understand. The author shares personal tips in there, too, which for me is always a good thing. Plus, the photos look amazing, which of course is important when you’re talking about food. Everything is fresh, healthy, colorful, and super exciting.

I recently tried the recipe for Tuscan Turkey Burgers written in this book, only, I used chicken instead of turkey because ground turkey is hard to come by here. This dish was so good that MrC had it for dinner, then lunch the next day, and then lunch again the day after that. Mm-hmm. Husbandry-approved! The kiddo wasn’t too fond of it, though, most likely because of the spinach. But he ate it all up anyway. Thank goodness he isn’t a picky eater.

mrspcuyugan
Ta-da! Tuscan Chicken Burgers. Only three left on the plate coz we ate the other three already.

 

So, yes, Paleo Italian Cooking stays. I can’t wait to try the other recipes listed in this cookbook. And I’m also excited to start experimenting with the other cookbooks in my collection. Stay tuned, guys! 

 

Tuscan Chicken Burgers [Gluten-Free!]
Serves 6
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 500g Ground chicken
  2. 1 Egg
  3. 1 tsp Sea salt, divided
  4. 1 tsp Ground black pepper, divided
  5. 1 tbsp Olive oil
  6. 1/4 cup Red bell pepper, diced
  7. 1/4 cup Yellow onion, diced
  8. 5 cloves Garlic, minced
  9. 1 cup Fresh baby spinach, chopped
  10. 6 leaves Basil, chopped
  11. 1 tsp Fresh thyme
  12. 1/4 tsp Dried red pepper flakes
Instructions
  1. Place ground chicken in a large bowl. Make a well in the center and break the egg into it. Blend well with a spoon. Season with 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Set aside.
  2. Place a skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil. Once hot, add the red bell pepper and onion. Season with remaining salt and pepper.
  3. Saute, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes. Add the garlic, spinach, basil, thyme and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute more, then remove from heat.
  4. Once the vegetables are cool, add them to the bowl of chicken.
  5. Use your hands to mix all ingredients well. Form the mixture into 6 burgers.
  6. Cook on a grill or pan over medium heat, about 6 minutes per side, flipping once, until cooked through.
Notes
  1. The fresh herbs really make a difference in this recipe, so if you have them use them. Otherwise, 1/2 teaspoon each of dried basil and thyme would work, too.
  2. The chicken mixture can be a bit sticky, so use wet hands when forming into patties.
  3. The original recipe says to divide the chicken mixture into 4 burgers, but I found them to be too big, which is why I split them into 6 instead.
  4. I served this with a super easy honey-mustard dipping sauce, which is just 1 part yellow mustard mixed with 1.5 parts good raw honey. Enjoy!
Adapted from Paleo Italian Cooking
Adapted from Paleo Italian Cooking
At Home With MrsC http://www.mrspcuyugan.com/

 

P.S. I’m writing this post in October, but setting the publish date to September 30 because I was supposed to write about this in September but my life has been insane. Just thought I’d come clean about that. Lol! 🙂

Rice Flour

The Breakup

I can’t believe that this is happening. 

Because of certain, unforeseen issues that have been springing up, I find myself having to make a conscious effort to break up with one of the greatest loves of my life – bread.

Lol. Ang drama diba? But seriously, my life and pantry are in for a big change. 

Our family doctor (aka my dad) advised us to try shifting to a gluten free diet, in the hopes that this will help cure Little MrC’s never-ending rashes. Because the seasons are changing again, rash-y days are here for us both, and it’s as ugly as it is uncomfortable.

I grew up dealing with the same skin issues that my kid is going through now, so I know how hard it is not to scratch all the itchy bits. Scratching makes things worse, though, obviously. So it’s really a struggle. For a while, when I was younger, I became dependent on my steroid ointment, and I really don’t want the kiddo to end up the same way. It’s both bad for you and expensive in the long run kasi

Rice Flour
Thank God for rice flour. Got this bag at Brie’s Baking Needs in Las Piñas.

 

So, our best bet right now is this diet shift. We are going gluten free (GF). It’s worth a try. Plus, abstaining from gluten is supposed to help with other things, too, like bloating, migraines and low energy levels, so this sounds like a good change to make.

Honestly though, I don’t see us making a 100%, no turning back transition, for practical reasons. But I will do as much as I can to limit gluten in our meals from now on. Starting with bread.

Oh, my bread and pastry-loving heart. Breakfast buffets are never gonna be the same. But, on the upside, because I bake, I hope to eventually make GF bread myself at home. Super huge challenge, I know, but I’m up for it. Also, in a few weeks, I feel like I’ll be able to call myself a puto-making expert. Lol.

 

I’m still a little clueless as to how this is gonna go, so I’m holding off on posting any meal plans until I have things figured out. It is daunting, but I’m lucky that I have friends who already are gluten free, and are super willing to answer my questions. There also are countless resources online for recipes, hacks, tips and tricks. Thank God for the interwebs.

It’s gonna be worth it. It’s gonna be worth it. It’s gonna be worth it. Yes, I still have to keep reminding myself, because a life without cake, ensaymadas, doughnuts and sandwich bread is my idea of a sad life. But hey, if it’s for the good of the kiddo, I’m all-in. Isipin ko nalang, the results could make me far happier than bread has ever had. Right?

Wish me luck, guys. And follow along on our gluten free journey! I’ll be using the hashtag #theglutenfreeproject on IG.

Anyone out there living a gluten free life? Please send me links to your favorite GF websites and social media accounts so I can follow them!