Sweet Potato Bites

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Trying to find gluten/dairy free appetizers can sometimes be a challenge.  So many dips have cream cheese or sour cream and while there are dairy free versions of those, sometimes the taste is off.  I stumbled across this recipe on pinterest when I was looking for a Paleo appetizer as someone who was coming over to our house doesn’t eat grains of any kind.  The original recipe does call for dairy and I just omitted those ingredients.

I actually loved these.  Like, really loved them.  Could have eaten the whole platter by myself loved them.  Want to make them tomorrow so I can have more loved them.  But I am a sweet potato fanatic.  Love guacamole and bacon makes everything good.  How can combining them can go wrong?

Ingredients:

2 sweet potatoes, cleaned, skins on

2 Tablespoons olive oil

2 ripe avocados

Lime juice

Salt and Pepper

4 slices of bacon

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.  Brush 1/2 Tablespoon of olive oil on the aluminum foil.

Slice potatoes into 1/4 – 1/2 inch slices.  You can use a mandolin but I just eye balled it and used a sharp kitchen knife.  Arrange slices on the prepared baking sheet.  Brush tops with remaining olive oil.  I think I used another 3 Tablespoons of olive oil.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Roast for 20-25 minutes, then flip.  Roast an additional 8 minutes.

While your potatoes are roasting in the oven, make your guacamole.  I just mash up the avocado, add lime juice/salt to taste.

Fry up your bacon slices – I started cooking the bacon after I popped the potatoes into the oven.  Drain slices and chop once cooled.

Once your potatoes have finished roasting, put them on the plate you are serving them with.  Place a dollop of guacamole and sprinkle the chopped bacon on top.  Serve.

Enjoy!

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Watermelon Salsa

I had never even heard of watermelon salsa until a friend of mine had it for her children as a snack one day.  My children love salsa and they love watermelon.  We had to give this a try.  If you don’t like watermelon or cilantro, this recipe is not for you.  My husband who doesn’t like watermelon tried this and said, “You need to add something else, all I can taste is watermelon.”  Lol, it is called WATERMELON SALSA!!  🙂

Both of my girls love this as do I.  It’s very refreshing and quick to make.  A great way to use up some fresh watermelon!

Ingredients:
3 cups chopped watermelon
1 cup chopped cilantro
2 jalepenos, chopped
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup red onion chopped
1/4 tsp salt

Mix all ingredients together and chill in refrigerator until you are ready to eat.  Serve with tortilla chips.

Thanks for a great recipe Kristine!

Mexican Salad

I found this recipe in a Fine Cooking Fresh magazine from 2008.  Nothing needed to be adjust for gluten/dairy free diet and it tastes amazing!  This is salad is a great side salad to any grilled meat.  We’ve served it with ribs but it could also be used as an appetizer and eaten with tortilla chips.  Even my 8 year old gobbled this up!

Make sure you give yourself some time, the corn and peppers need to roast in the oven for 20 minutes.

Ingredients:
2 large orange peppers
2 ears fresh corn (you can used canned corn if you are short on time)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 small clove garlic
3 Tbsp lime juice
3 Tbsp orange juice
2 tsp finely chopped shallot
1 Tbsp honey
3/4 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and finely ground (I just just used cumin powder)
1/4 cup olive oil
2 large firm ripe tomatoes, cored, seeded and cut into a small dice
1 small jicama, peeled and cut into small dice(I left this out b/c the jicama I bought tasted off, would add next time)
2 large firm ripe avocados, peeled, pitted and cut into a small dice
1 can 15 oz black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:

Roast the peppers and corn:  Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Line cookie sheet with aluminum foil.  Cut the peppers in half lengthwise and remove the stem, seed core, and ribs.  Put the pepper halves on the baking sheet, cut side down.  Husk the corn and put the ears on the baking sheet.  Drizzle the oil over the peppers and corn and rub it around to coat them evenly.  Sprinkle the corn with salt and pepper.  Roast in the oven until the peppers are soft, slightly shriveled and browned, about 20 minutes.  Rotate the corn occasionally as it roasts.

When the vegetables are done, let them rest until cool enough to handle.  Scrape away the pepper skin and cut the flesh into 1/2 inch dice.  Cut the corn kernels away from the cob.

Make the vinaigrette:  Mince and mash the garlic to a paste with 1/4 tsp salt.  In a medium bowl, whisk the garlic paste with the lime and orange juices, shallot, honey and toasted ground cumin.  Slowly add the oil in a thin stream, whisking until well blended.  Season to taste with black pepper and more salt and honey if you like.

Assemble the salad:  Place peppers, corn, tomatoes, jicama, avocados, and place beans in a small platter or other wide shallow serving dish.  Sprinkle with the chopped cilantro.  You can allow each guest to pour the vinaigrette on their own plate or drizzle the vinaigrette over the salad platter before serving, which is what I did.

Enjoy!!

Crispy Baked Chicken Wings

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Being gluten and dairy free means that there are some foods that I can never order at a restaurant.  Chicken wings are one of those foods.  Most restaurants deep fry their chicken wings in a fryer that is also used to deep fry breaded foods.  Which means the gluten from those other foods will get on anything that is put into the fryer.

I am not a huge chicken wing fan, but when you haven’t been able to have a certain food for over 2 years, it starts to sound like the best food in the world!!

So a search began to find a chicken wing recipe I could make at home and bake in the oven to keep it a little healthier.  I stumbled across this recipe on Bon Appetit (it has to be good, right?) and gave it a whirl.  I made about 30 wings with it and left a few without the sauce for the kids.  Both girls gobbled these up and asked when we could have chicken wings for dinner again.  My husband also said they were good and definitely something to make again.  That’s a winner recipe in my book!

Ingredients:

Sauce

1 tablespoon Earth Balance butter (or regular if you are not dairy free)

¼ tsp cayenne pepper

¼ tsp black pepper

¼ tsp salt

¼ cup Franks hot sauce

Wings

30ish chicken wings & drumettes

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 tablespoon salt

½ tsp black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Place a wire racks inside 2 baking sheets.  Coat chicken wings with the oil, salt and pepper in a bowl. Place coated chicken wings on the racks in rows with space in between.  Bake until wings are crispy, about 45-50 minutes.

While the chicken wings are in the oven cooking, prepare the wing sauce.  Melt the butter.  Add cayenne pepper, black pepper, salt and hot sauce to the butter.  Whisk until combined.

When the chicken wings are done toss in the sauce until the wings are coated.  If you are not dairy free, serve with blue cheese and fresh veggies of your choice.  I made a dairy free ranch to go with mine and will be posting that recipe soon.

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Enjoy!