Saturday, August 29, 2009

GLUTEN FREE CURRY






















I think by nature of ingredients most curries are gluten free. So, nothing special here. It's the franchised chain restaurants that screw it all up with adding wheat based thickeners to the curries...

Victoria loves Thai curries and a while ago she found some paste and nitrate free coconut stuff at a local ethnic grocer. (and she stocked up on the Coconut milk....)

In my quest to make something different for dinner, I decided to finally use the green paste and whip up a Thai chicken curry. This would be a recipe for a fellow Blogger,




Shirley's claim to fame is everything GF easily. This recipe could have been from her, that's how easy it was to make a seriously top quality dinner. Actually, i feel confident enough to call it "Thai Restaurant quality". This paste is fantatsic.

The Paste and coconut milk form the basis, then you add spices and touches to your liking. Most of it all is already int eh paste, but I added a hand full of Basil leaves from the yard, some fish sauce and brown sugar to take the edge off for Isabella. Simmer until it starts to get a bit thicker and serve.
Now, Lauren does not like curries. But yesterday she did eat a bowl of it, saying she does like green curries. Kids. What can I say.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

GLUTEN FREE SCHNITZEL & BIRTHDAY CAKE

Bruno and his family came over to our place last night for a good dinner in the backyard before summer is over...
It was also Daniele's 13th birthday, now Bruno and Sandra get to contend with a teenager...! Congratulations and happy birthday.

I made my standby dinner party meal, gluten free Wiener Schnitzel (bread crumbs courtesy GF PATISSERIE) with parsley potatoes, a variety of salads and to make sure Bruno eats something, I also prepped some gluten free pasta with tomato sauce made from scratch. It's gardening season after all..

GF PATISSERIE brought a gluten free birthday cake for Daniele, Callebaut truffle chocolate with raspberry puree filling. My favorite part of the food served....though the Schnitzel came in a a very close second.

Around 11 we had to move the drinking inside, the wind made it too cold outside.
Great people, great food, great drink. The way a summer has to be.



CLICK ON IMAGES FOR BETTER VIEWING.

WIENER SCHNITZEL, POTATOES, LINGONBERRIES









BRUNO RECORDING HISTORY?










KIDS SWARMING THE CAKE

































KEEP DRINKING!










THE DOG WANTS HER SCHNITZEL











THE BRUNOS










































Friday, August 21, 2009

GLUTEN FREE ICE CREAM CONES

Hello Mr. Goldbaum,

look at the smile on this girl's face. You did that (well, Haagen Dazs a bit as well). On behalf of Celiac Kids worldwide, thank you for creating a fantastic, gluten free ice cream cone. A chocolate flavored one no less!

Now available at GF PATISSERIE. Come on by, get your box and head over to Mackay's for a scoop of your favorite flavor in this excellent cone.









Tuesday, August 18, 2009

GLUTEN FREE KIDS FOOD.

While I spent the day at a really bad industry trade show in Edmonton, Isabella got to ask for some food she really craves from when she was not on a gluten free diet.

Kids. So easy to please. I think all restaurants should punt their clientel and replace them with children. No more complaints. Just messy table cloth and spilled milk.
But then, Chowhound would not be fun anymore. We are so opinionated....

Anyway. Isabella asked for Spaghetti with Tomato sauce (she got fresh, home made, gluten free Tagliatelle). Victoria made Pasta again... very very good.



And Chicken Nuggets. Breaded with the finest (size) gluten free bread crumbs from GF PATISSERIE'S bread and real chicken breast, Victoria made Isabella a really happy girl today. And me too, as I was really excited with all the leftover Pasta I got to eat.






Sunday, August 16, 2009

GLUTEN FREE MAN FOOD

The weather in Calgary last week was really bad. Rainy, foggy, cold. All week basically. Not good.
Food does compensate though. Hearty, and basic dishes.
Though some foods not many people like. Like Black pudding. Rare to find a good blood sausage in Calgary, I did find this speciman at Ben's Meat's & Deli in Edmonton.

Well fried with roasted potatoes, some gluten free bread, Dutch Mustard and Horse radish....I was the only one in the whole family eating it .



Also procured at Ben's Meats last time I was delivering, a pile of meaty beef bones. Flintstone size bones. Victoria made them for me, slow cooking all Sunday afternoon. I had to leave the house, the aroma drove me crazy. The meat fell off the bones and this time, all of us enjoyed the meal.


Another favorite food of mine is anything Crisp. Not just bacon and other savory things that are crispy, but Victoria's gluten free fruit crisps. Like this very tasty Peach and Rhubarb crisp...who cares about the weather if you have food like that!









Saturday, August 15, 2009

JASMINE TEA











Victoria's favorite evening slow down is a great cup of Jasmine tea. On every trip to China I have to buy some Jasmine Pearls to bring back.
However the last few month I had no trips scheduled and the supply started to dry up. I am headed out again in September, but I did bring up my challenge to one of my friends in Shanghai, who usually comes with me to buy tea.

To my surprise I received a pckage from FEDEX yesterday, origin China. Another brochure or sample fabrics was my first thought, until I saw the sender.....my friend took it upon herself to ensure a continued supply of Jasmine tea for Victoria.
To be exact, I received 2kg of top quality Jasmine Dragon Phoenix Pearls Scented Green Tea. Even in most hotel gift shops they usually sell OK quality only. I have never seen this grade of tea.
Here is what one website is saying about this tea:
Organic Dragon Phoenix Pearl Jasmine tea gets its name from the visual characteristics of the tea bushes climbing the hillsides like a Dragon coming out of the water. The women pickers, chosen specifically to pluck this type of tea, give the appearance of dancing phoenixes next to the Dragon's long slender body. The tea is grown in an area in Fuding City near the border of the Fujian and Jiangxi provinces.
The area is mountainous and is often shrouded in clouds or fog. The tea is picked in April and May and held until August and September when the finest jasmine blossoms are in bloom. The jasmine flowers are picked before noon and set aside until evening when the petals begin to open in the cool night air. Once open, the "marrying" of the jasmine to the tea happens in two applications after which the jasmine petals are removed. When the petals are removed, women begin rolling each leaf and a bud into tiny pearl-sized balls.
Once rolled, the tea is wrapped in silk mesh and dried by fire to set the form. According to analysis done by Chinese researchers, Organic Dragon Phoenix Pearl has a higher concentration of Vitamin C and amino acids than other teas. Use spring water at a temperature of 80° to 90° C. (180° to 195° F.) and multiple short steepings.



My friend went straight to the exporter in Xiamen, a major tea trading city and procured these leafs. They can be used up to 5 times and make the most flavorful Jasmine tea.

Guess who is really happy??

Monday, August 10, 2009

GLUTEN FREE BBQ














































So Isabella survived her first camp. Six nights without her parents, just a few tears shed the first night. Brave girl.

On the last day of camp, all parents were invited for a BBQ with all the kids and it was a really nice finish to a great week. Interesting to meet some of the other parents, great to see so many fantastic camp volunteers and really great to see a bunch of kids so happy.


Victoria sent over enough Hamburger buns for everybody and I was able to sneak away from GF PATISSERIE'S birthday for an hour to spend some time with Isabella at the BBQ.

Since all the kids came to visit the bakery for some cookies during the week, many of them persuaded their parents to come over to Victoria and buy some baked goods for the way home. Many of them were first time visitors and had no idea that GF Patisserie is already one year open.


Needless to say it was a busy Saturday.....here are some pictures, if you recognize anyone, please forward the post to them.

Friday, August 07, 2009

CUSTOMER SERVICE














































What is your favorite small business and why do you like it? Is it the product, is it the convenience to your lifestyle, or other reasons?

For me, when I choose to patronize a small business, customer service is important. Yes, the product has to fit as well, but I do not care to go out of my way or pay extra, if the attention to customer service is there.


GF Patisserie has now made three deliveries to Ben's Meats & Deli. Two times I drove the product to Edmonton and had a good chat wit the owner, David Van Leeuwen. (It ain't much if it ain't Dutch....)

He is the third generation owner of this very cool place on Stony Plain and when I speak to him I get fairly invigorated and to a degree validated about being in business.
His passion is second to none, and his attention to his customers is incredible.


My last delivery was unannounced and when I arrived, he had 6 clients in the store. Besides that it seemed to me that he knew every single one of them, his interaction with them was what floored me.
He still cuts the meat to request, asking about thickness and recommends this or that to go with it. Sort of I got reminded of my father who ran the country store in my home town. Personalized service is where it's at. Really. Excellent pricing on good quality food of course helps as well.

It's getting harder to find these days, but I know it's still out there. Not at Starbucks, not at Costco ( both places I like and frequent), but at the small business around the corner. They do deserve our support. Get to know the owners, it pays. I saw it.

Anyway. Enough waxing for the day.



Before gluten free people from Red Deer send me scathing emails or post on Facebook, why I did not bring them anything on my trip to Edmonton, listen up:
Get some of you together, Pam B. can lead the way, get a group order together and I will make a special trip to my favorite city between Calgary and Edmonton. Just for you. You deserve it. I know. I always wanted to stop at the Donut Mill in Gasoline Alley....hehe