For those that are gluten free, you know what I mean when I say the holidays can be extra stressful with shopping AND having to cook a successful gluten free meal. The shopping for food alone can be a overload, but then making sure others do not mix their foods with the gluten free foods you've spent days preparing for. Here are a few idea's for a successful holiday meal sure to please every guest on the list.
Lasagna butter-nut squash:
- 1 lb. Italian sausage, mild, casing removed
- 1-Medium red onion, chopped in small pieces.
- 3 small- to- medium garlic clove(s), mince
- 15 oz. GF pizza sauce (jar or can) Prego Pizza Sauce, pizzeria Style and Veggie Smart Pizza Sauce are both GF
- 3/4 C. roasted red bell pepper strips
- 1/4 C. extra virgin olive oil. (Check labels)
- 3 basil leaves
- 1 medium butternut squash
Preheat oven to 400ºF.
Crumble the sausage and brown it using a saute pan, along with the onions & garlic. Be sure to turn ingredients often to prevent sticking and burning. Using a fork, poke holes in the squash, wrap in saran wrap and microwave for 2-4 minutes to soften and slightly cook the squash. Cut the top and ends of the squash off and peel it. Split it in half, scoop out the seeds, and cut into thick wedges.
Puree pizza sauce, red peppers, olive oil and basil in food processor or blender.
Using a 9×9 oven safe baking dish, put down enough sauce to lightly cover the bottom of the dish. Next add the squash, trying not to overlap the pieces, and then spoon on the sausage mixture, followed by the sauce.
Repeat until all your ingredients are used up…trying to reserve enough sauce to cover the top of the lasagna.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 45-60 minutes or until squash is softened. If dairy is allowed, sprinkle a little Parmesan cheese over the top for a real lasagna-like taste.
Yield: 6 Servings
Chicken Waldorf Salad
• 1½ lbs. cooked chicken breast cut into 1-2” cubes (You can also use deli chicken or turkey cut thick, store-bought roasted chicken or leftover barbecue chicken. Check that any store-bought meat is gluten-free.)
• 3 Granny Smith or Gala apples, peeled, cored and cut into small dice.
• About 1 c seedless grape, Cut large grapes in half.
• 3 stalks of celery. Washed, quartered lengthwise and cut into ¼ “ dice(optional)
• ½ c chopped walnuts, salted peanuts, or cashews
• ½ c raisins
• 1 x 6 oz. carton of Greek Style lemon yogurt (Chobani is gluten-free)
• ½ c mayo – lite is fine
• Shredded romaine lettuce
1. Mix mayo and lemon yogurt together.
2. Add diced apples and turn until well covered by dressing. Even after 24 hours I find that the apples don’t discolor in this salad.
3. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Taste and adjust seasoning. If the yogurt or fruit are particularly tart, you can add honey or other sweetener to balance the flavor.
4. Add nuts right before serving. Nuts will soften and lose their crunch if they sit in the dressing for too long.
5. Toss mixture lightly with lettuce. Kid’s love this every time!
Tips/Alternatives: Note that I don’t add salt or pepper, as I don’t find it is necessary. For some variation, add dried apricots, or even fresh nectarines. If you want to add a light sweetness to it, top the salad with whipped cream.
6.To cook the chicken from scratch, put about 1-1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breast in a saucepan with hot tap water, enough to cover. Cover and bring slowly to a boil on the top of the stove.
Turn heat to low and simmer for about 10 minutes. Turn the heat off and let the meat cool down with the water. Cooking time may vary based on the size of the breasts, as well as pan size. This results in very moist, tender meat. Always double check that the meat is cooked all the way through before using.