Sunday, February 12, 2012

Penne Pasta with Lima Beans


12 ounces gluten-free penne pasta (3/4 box)
1 10-ounce packge frozen lima beans (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 cup of frozen peas
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 leeks (white and light green parts), cupt into half-moons
kosher salt and black pepper
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
Parmesan cheese


Cook the pasta according to the package directions.

Add the beans and peas during the last 2 minutes of cooking. Drain.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.

Add the leeks and season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender (but not brown), 8 to 10 minutes.

Add the cream and cook until slightly thickened, 3 to 4 minutes.

Add the pasta to the skillet.

Add the tarragon to the skillet and toss to combine.

Sprinkle with cheese before serving.

Creamy and yummy.

My husband thought that this was really good pasta. I enjoyed it, too and it was sooooo easy to make. I was a little nervous at first but I honestly couldn't tell the difference between the regular pasta that I usually make and the gluten-free pasta. Trust me, it was just as delicious. This recipe is a keeper and I will definitely make this again in the future. Try it, I promise, you will not be disappointed.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

First Attempt

My husband of 2 years found out that he can no longer have foods containing gluten. My first thought was, ooookay, exactly what is gluten? My next thought was, oh no, I'll have to relearn how to cook everything. The thing is, cooking is the one thing that I'm pretty good at, so I'll admit, I panicked  a little. Okay, so I panicked a lot. I've only just started researching celiac disease, so I'm gradually gaining a better understanding of what he can and cannot have. Once I got over the initial shock though, I decided that I was up for the challenge. I mean, how hard can it be, right? Anyway, I figured I would try to start with something the whole family might enjoy. So, I found this recipe for chocolate cake online. It was very rich and incredibly moist. Hopefully you'll enjoy it. Let me know if you try it. I'd love to hear your thoughts.


12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
4 (1 ounce) squares unsweetened chocolate
1 1/2 cups butter, melted
1 3/4 cups white sugar
1/2 cup of water
7 eggs
2 cups whipped cream


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 10 inch round pan and line bottom with parchment paper.

Chop chocolate squares.

Place in a large bowl with chocolate chips.

Add melted butter.

Heat water and 1 1/2 cups of sugar in a saucepan until boiling.

Add to the chocolate mixture and stir until smooth.

In separate bowls, separate the eggs.

Beat the egg yolks and half of the sugar (meant for the eggs) until they get thick and creamy.

Then do the same with the egg whites and the rest of the sugar. When you add the sugar for both do it very slowly as you are whipping.

Once the yolks are thick and creamy and the whites are at soft peaks, combine both of them and then fold into chocolate mixture.

Pour batter into 10 inch pan. Place 10 inch pan on a cookie sheet in the oven and fill the cookie sheet with water.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 40 to 50 minutes. Remove from oven. Cool and refrigerate for several hours.

Dip the pan in hot water to remove cooled cake. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. If desired, garnish with whipped cream and serve.

Tip: I didn't follow the directions and just dip the pan in hot water. I actually let the pan sit in the hot water, which turned out to be a huge no-no. It made the bottom of the cake too moist. Other than that, it was good. My kids loved it and my husband enjoyed it, too. He just thought it was too semi-sweet and more like a brownie. For me, I'm more used to the texture of a cake made with flour, so although it was good, it was just different.