Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Gourmet Entertaining.....

Roasted Shrimp Shooters!

That Just So Happens to be
Deliciously Gluten Free

It seems that these days everyone knows someone or of someone that must eat a gluten free diet.

As a host/hostess entertaining for the gluten free guest can be challenging, but does not have to be. Armed with a few quick tips, a little bit of planning and several great recipes, gourmet gluten free entertaining can be a breeze!

The days of having to cook one special dish for one of your gluten free friends are over. You can have a beautiful dinner party where the only conversation about the food is how delicious it is and how much your guests are enjoying your hospitality.

For those of you that are unaware, gluten is the protein found in wheat, rye and barley (oats are questionable). It only takes a small amount of one of these sources to ruin a beautiful dinner party. For example, if you were to put croutons on a salad, then remove them for your gluten free friend, it's too late. That salad has been contaminated by gluten and will make your friend sick. You must read all the ingredient labels on the food you are cooking with to ensure there are no hidden glutens lurking in your meal. Be careful using appliances (toaster), baking dishes, utensils etc... that have been used primarly for gluten containing recipes. Do not let this information scare you, now that you have the knowledge you are in control of your own very successful gourmet gluten free dinner!

Here are a few quick tips to help you get started:

*The trick is to cook the entire meal gluten free. If your entire meal is gluten free, then you need not worry about which dishes are gluten free and which are not.

*Choose easy gluten free recipes that use whole foods such as vegetables (potatoes and rice are safe), fresh meat or fish, fruits, natural oils (olive oil), and dairy products (check with your guest to see if they can digest dairy).

*If unsure about a roasting pan for instance, use a disposable pan or line your clean roasting pan thoroughly with aluminum foil. If baking gluten free cookies, line the clean cookie sheet with parchment paper.

*When preparing your dinner, line work spaces such as counter tops with plastic wrap, wax paper, and/or parchment paper to prevent contamination.

*Even if a product seems that it should be naturally gluten free, be vigilant with your label reading. You might be surprised how many products have "hidden gluten."

*Be Confident! You CAN do it!

Amy's Quick Recipes: for an absolutely delicious dinner party the whole gang can enjoy! This includes fun and festive cocktails too, Ladies & Gentlemen! For more great recipes, dinner party ideas and to see me cooking up a storm with Dan Bazile and Tim Drawbridge on WNYT please visit: http://wnyt.com/article/stories/S2025314.shtml?cat=10127

Roasted Shrimp Shooters
Amy Rota-Poulin Copyright 2011

2 pounds (20-25-count) shrimp, shelled, deveined & tails left on
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon ground sea salt
¼ - ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
Directions: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Place raw shrimp in a bowl and toss with the olive oil, salt, and pepper. Pour the shrimp evenly onto a sheet pan or cookie sheet. Make sure that the shrimp are only one layer thick. Roast the shrimp for 7 to10 minutes. The shrimp are fully cooked with they are pink and firm. Let shrimp cool. You may even prepare them a day a head of time and store them in the refrigerator.
Dipping Sauces:
Easy Roasted Garlic & Honey BBQ Sauce:
1/2 cup of Roasted Garlic & Honey BBQ Sauce (I like Dinosaur BBQ)
1/2 cup ketchup (I like Annie’s)
2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
1 teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon of hot sauce (I like Dinosaur BBQ for this as well)
~Mix the BBQ sauce, ketchup, horseradish, lemon juice, and hot sauce together until combined.
Easy Creamy Avocado Sauce:
1 cup of premium sour cream
1 avocado, remove seed & skin
2 teaspoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ - ½ teaspoon of hot sauce (I like Dinosaur BBQ for this as well)
Freshly ground sea salt & pepper to taste
In a medium/large bowl mash avocado, add sour cream, lemon juice, hot sauce, sea salt & pepper. Mix sauce until combined.
To Assemble the Roasted Shrimp Shooters: Place a tablespoon of your favorite dipping sauce in the bottom of a shot glass. Hang two roasted shrimp on the edge of the glass & serve. This is a fun and festive way to enjoy an old favorite.  Quick Tip: Most fishmongers at your local supermarkets will clean, shell and devein your shrimp for you free of charge.
*Always Read the ingredient labels of each individual ingredient you are using to make sure that, that particular brand is completely gluten free. If you are unsure call the manufacturer or visit their web site, they are usually more than happy to answer your questions. *
This recipe was created by Amy Rota-Poulin author of Cooking Gluten Free With Amy.  Enjoy!
These recipes and many more can be found in my cookbook, Cooking Gluten Free With Amy available at the Northshire Bookstore and online!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Upcoming Events You Need To Know About!

Hoover is busy driving to all of these
great gluten free events!
This is just a short and sweet post of a few upcoming events that you might like to add to your calendar:

  • On Sunday, March 20, 2011: I will be cooking up a gluten free storm with Dan Bazile & Tim Drawbridge on WNYT News Channel 13 during the Morning Today Show. The show starts at 8:00am. Tune in around 8:30am to see how you can bring Spring into your kitchen!

  • On Tuesday, April 5, 2011: The Glens Falls Regional Celiac Support Group will be holding their April meeting at Glens Falls Hospital. The meeting will take place at 6:30pm on the lower level of the Hospital. The Glens Falls Regional Celiac Support Group is excited to welcome this month's guest speaker, Marianne Romano RD and Nutritional Consultant. Marianne will be speaking to us about a healthy gluten free diet.

  • On Wednesday, April 13, 2011 from 6:00-8:00pm: Price Chopper will be holding a Gluten Free Food Seminar. I will be happy to answer your gluten free cooking questions! I hope to see you there!
     "Location: Price Chopper/Golub Corporation Corporate Offices, 461 Nott St., Schenectady, NY 12308
    Sample gluten free products and speak with product representatives:
    Elizabeth Barbone author of 2 Easy Gluten Free Baking cookbooks will demonstrate art of baking gluten free breads
    Amy Rota-Poulin author of Cooking Gluten Free with Amy will demonstrate flavorful gluten free dishes
    Tickets $10.00 per person, proceeds to be donated to local Celiac chapter
    Tickets available by sending check made out to Price Chopper to:
    Maureen Murphy, Manager Consumer Trends, Nutrition and Lifestyles, 461 Nott St., Box 204, Schenectady, NY 12308"
Amy's Quick Recipe: Chocolate Raspberry Quesadillas:

2 gluten free corn tortillas
15-17 gluten free dark chocolate chips
1-2 tablespoons of fresh or fresh frozen raspberries

Place 1 corn tortilla in a pan on medium heat, top with dark or bittersweet chocolate chips, then with raspberries. Place second corn tortilla on top. Cook for approximately 1 minute. Carefully flip your chocolaty quesadilla using a spatula, cook for an additional 1-2 minutes. Remove from pan, let cool 1 minute. Cut into 4 pieces and serve! This is one of my all time favorite quick, simple and completely satisfying desserts! You get a chocolaty, fruity & crunchy dessert that is also a fun and easy finger food! YUM!!

Amy's Quick Tip: Feel free to add dried fruit or your favorite fresh fruit in place of the raspberries in the recipe above. You can also make this gluten free delicacy dairy free to by using the gluten free/dairy free chocolate chips which can be found in the gluten free isle at Price Chopper.