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The HotPlate

The HotPlate

It looked so good; I ate it.

Pumpkin Sorbet!

Pumpkin Sorbet

In the summertime, one of my favorite things to do is get out the ice cream maker and make some sorbet for dessert. It’s super easy to make and there are endless options as to what kind of flavor you want to design.

With Thanksgiving coming up, I wanted to make a quick holiday dessert, but didn’t have the kitchen to make a pie. Sorbet was the answer, even though I had to borrow Mom’s freezer to prep the ice cream maker. Life in the Hotel prohibits a normal sized fridge.

BTW, it’s really, really good! Enjoy!

Pumpkin Sorbet

1 (15-ounce) can unsweetened pumpkin purée
2 cups water
1 1/4 cups simple syrup (combine 2 cups water and 1 cup sugar - heat until dissolved and then bring to a boil. Remove from heat and refrigerate over night)
1/2 cup Agave Nectar
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

1) Combine the pumpkin, spices, agave nectar, water and syrup in a bowl and stir until smooth… it should be quite watery.
2) If using a conventional ice-cream machine, cover and refrigerate the mixture for at least 2 hours or until thoroughly chilled. Freeze in the ice-cream machine according to the manufacturer’s directions. Put the frozen sorbet in a chilled container, press plastic wrap against the surface, and cover. Freeze until ready to serve.

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It’s Time To Warm The Hotplate Up!

The hotplate (actual) had to move, but now is settled in to its new digs.

Stay tuned for new clips, quips and blips.

BTW, a new gluten-free market just opened around the corner! Maybe I can get an interview with the owner…

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Happy Easter From The Hotplate!

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Gotta Love Brownies!

Trader Joe’s loves me… Trader Joe’s loves me not…

GFCF Brownies!

Sometimes I get really angry with Trader Joe’s. They used to have organic ground turkey patties - and then they stopped selling them. They used to have sweet rice flour - and they stopped selling that. About once every six months, they discontinue something that I rely on.

Well, today I’m really happy with Trader Joe’s. Why? Brownies. Gluten free brownies. Easy to make, gluten free brownies. Inexpensive, easy to make, gluten free brownies.

Here’s what you need:

  • Somewhere around $3.00 - which will buy you the Trader Joe’s Gluten Free Easy To Prepare Brownie Baking Mix.
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1 egg

That’s it. Just grease it, crack it, pour it, mix it, pour it, bake it - first, pre-heat it. Brownielogic!

Okay, I know. Are they good?

Well, they’re not sent from heaven on taste alone. They taste pretty darn good, though. I like brownies that are moist and cool… right out of the oven, I think they have a bit of a dry taste… perhaps a touch of bitterness. So, stick ‘em in the fridge overnight, then have a bite.

I drizzled these with Hershey’s syrup. That’s why there’s a funky scar-like pattern on the top.

With the price point being so low, and the recipe being so easy, these would be PERFECT to provide to your gfcf kid’s teacher for cooking class! The non-gfcf kids won’t argue… these are brownies baby!

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The Trojan Pizza

The Trojan Pizza

For ages, I’ve been trying to get my boy to eat beans and rice. It would open up a variety of food choices for him and I could have a bit more fun cooking something beyond “turkey potato, chicken taco and hashbrowns.”

So, one night last week, he asked me to make a pizza. Cool enough - I grabbed a gfcf crust from the freezer, started to brown some ground beef with garlic and onion, and realized I didn’t have any tomato sauce. What was I gonna do? The meat would just roll off the crust and I’d have a big mess on my hands.

[Cue idea lightbulb.]

What if I made a paste out of Great Northern beans, garlic, cilantro and a dash of lime juice? Yeah, that’s the ticket!

So, without letting NAD see the can of beans go into the food processor, I whipped up a delicious concoction and spread it over the crust. Then I hid it all with the ground beef and popped the pizza into the convection oven. When it was nice and browned, I gave it a squirt of organic ketchup and a bit of organic mustard and called it “Hamburger Pizza.”

He devoured the whole thing and asked for more.

Hey, little boy. You just ate a half can of beans and got a ton of protein and fiber along the way! Ha! But, in this instance, what you don’t know will help you.

The Trojan Pizza (not to be associated with USC, unless you’d like it to be as such)

  • One individual sized gfcf pizza crust
  • 1/4 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 small, white onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic, one chopped, one whole
  • 1 can of Great Northern Beans
  • 1/2 cup of cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of one lime
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Organic Ketchup and Mustard

Set your stove to med/high and heat a tablespoon or two of grapeseed oil in a pan. Add sliced onion and chopped garlic and let it just get going… add your ground beef and get it nice and brown. Set aside.

In a food processor - I used the attachment that came with my blender - pulse one can of great northern beans (along with the liquid) with a clove of garlic and the cilantro, adding lime juice as you go. Blend until smooth… real smooth. We’re hiding beans here!

Spoon your bean mixture onto the pizza crust and top with the ground beef. If you like, sprinkle with some soy cheese, just make sure you read the label. For some wacky reason, many soy cheeses are not dairy free. Always check.

Put your Trojan Pizza in the oven for about 10-15 minutes, or until the crust starts to brown. I use a convection oven and set it for bake and then on broil for the last few minutes.

Remove and cut into slices - decorate with ketchup and mustard - make it fun, again, we’re hiding beans!

Serve it up!

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He Didn’t Just Eat. He Devoured!

Potato Pancakes

It’s rare that I can introduce a new food item to my gfcf son without a major trial period. In fact, most of the time, he just outright disapproves.

Today, I tried a recipe from one of my favorite gluten free blogs - the Gluten Free Bay ( - for potato pancakes. Basically, anything with a potato will do for NAD. So, I thought this had a chance. Maybe he would take a bite or two. Wrong! He ate these lovelies with passion and near desperation.

I stayed mostly true to the recipe, changing it up a bit to suit my own curiosity. I didn’t have any potato starch, so I used cornstarch. I didn’t have any russet potatoes, so I used the little creamer types, skin on. I also added a 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper. It wasn’t hot… just a hint of flavor. NAD also insisted on a generous dollop of ketchup. We use the Trader Joes’ Organic stuff. It’s probably not the potato pancake your grandma used to make, but it’s really darn good. Plus, having a name like Noah Abraham… he was bound to enjoy them.

These potato pancakes are a great way to get some egg protein (NAD won’t eat eggs) and I bet I could throw in some veggies without an argument, as long as I chop ‘em small or even puree them. Maybe I’ll try some of the Gluten Free Bay’s latke recipes and see what happens.

Click here for the recipe: Passover Potato Pancakes with Dill

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If you’re going to eat something, eat something nice.

I really adore rice pudding. Ever since I moved within walking distance of Felix Continental Cafe (widely known as just plain Felix’s,) I have been addicted to the sweet, cinnamon-citrus goodness that they serve out on the Plaza. And as with most things I love to eat, I love to cook them even more. So… how to make it gfcf? Don’t make it mean. Make it nice.

Nice Pudding!

Nice Pudding!

  • 2 cups of cooked rice – calrose or other short-grained white rice
  • 1 1/3 cups almond milk
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ cup agave nectar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup dried cranberries

Combine your egg, cinnamon, agave nectar, and vanilla in a large saucepan.

Add almond milk a little at a time while you mix.

Add cooked rice and dried cranberries and cook until liquid is nearly absorbed.

Pour pudding into a large bowl, cover and put in the fridge overnight. You could serve it warm, but I like rice pudding after it has set for a while. It’s up to you! There’s no rules to break here.

Serve in small bowls with a sprinkling of cinnamon and a squeeze of lemon juice. You could even drop a lemon rind in the bowl before filling it with the pudding. This can be made in so many ways by changing up the fruit content or eliminating it all together. Personally, I like it with raisins or dried cranberries.

Now, wasn’t that nice?

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