Wildfire Restaurant

Shane's been working on a big proposal for work the last few months so as a way of thanking Shane for all his hard work his boss said,"take your wife out to a nice restaurant." Last night was the big night and we chose Wildfire Restaurant since neither of us had been there but we'd heard it was really good. As an added bonus they have an extensive gluten free menu!

When Shane made the reservation online he noted that we would need a gluten free menu and low and behold as we were seated they produced one regular and one gluten free menu...without being reminded. Already I was very impressed! Our waitress went over the menu and some of the gluten free modifications and gave us a few minutes to decide what to order. While she was gone the manager came over to our table and said she was aware that it was not only our first time at the restaurant, but that I would be ordering off the GF menu. She asked if I had any additional questions and offered me a GF toasted bun (that they use for sandwiches) so that I could have some bread with my meal. Hello! How cool is that! I'm in love with this place!

Since the company was buying, we went all out. We ordered bacon wrapped scallops. salad minus the croutons, the most amazing "I want to drink you" ranch dressing, fillet medallions (oscar for me and horseradish crusted for Shane), potatoes au gratin (for me) and a BBQ rubbed baked sweet potato for Shane (not gluten free). For the big finale Shane got a warm chocolate chip cookie with ice cream and I of course got the flourless chocolate cake that literally melted in my mouth and made my heart sigh in delight. It was divine! (After taking one bite Shane realized his mistake in getting the cookie sundae...a momentary lack of judgement but I think he's learned his lesson.

I'll probably be talking about this amazing gluten free dining experience for years to come. If you ever get the chance to visit Wildfire I give it my highest recommendation.

Sweet Potatoes

Whenever we go to a steak place Shane usually orders a sweet potato. It always looks so yummy when they bring it out that I "share" with him. One of the best baked sweet potatoes that we've had was at Lonestar Steakhouse. Sweet potatoes are no stranger to our kitchen table, but because of all the fat and added calories I had never made them the "Lonestar way" - smothered in butter, sugar and cinnamon. This week we've had them twice and so love them! And guess what - you can make awesome sweet potatoes that taste better than pie (seriously!) without adding a lot of fat and calories. When made this way you add only 47 calories and 2.7 grams of fat. Not too bad and it's so sweet and filling that you'll probably skip dessert anyway! Here's how we do it.

4 Sweet Potatoes rinsed
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 Tablespoon butter

You can bake the sweet potatoes in the oven if you'd like, but we just stick them in the microwave and use the "potato" setting. Make sure to prick the sweet potatoes with a knife or fork a few times so they don't explode in your microwave! Mix the brown sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl. When the sweet potatoes are cooked slice open and melt about 3/4 teaspoon butter on each and sprinkle with about 2 teaspoons of the cinnamon sugar mixture. Enjoy!

Granola Recipe?

Shane's schedule has been pretty busy this past week so I really haven't done much cooking. It's just not as fun to cook for one! I have been thinking a lot about food though - especially granola...crunchy sweet nutty granola with almonds and raisins and coconut...maybe a hint of cinnamon...mmm! Does anyone have a good recipe? I came across this honey nut granola recipe that looks promising but if you have a recipe that you love I'd like to try it!

Rumbi Rice

One of our favorite places to eat when we visit Utah is Rumbi's Island Grill. We love their rumbi rice, ( rice cooked in coconut milk with kidney beans) and make it several times a month. Shane loves their sweet potato fries, but restaurant fryers are just a cross-contamination disaster waiting to happen so I avoid them...until now. Thanks to the gluten free mommy I have discovered Alexia's brand sweet potato fries right in my very own Target freezer aisle and I must say they are pretty much amazing! So tonight for dinner it's Rumbi Rice and fries. I'll steam up some broccoli or something to add a bit of color to the meal and we are really into spinach salad with all sorts of yummy toppings like, tomatoes, cashews, bacon, raisins, cranberries, almonds...you get the picture. Spring weather and salads go hand in hand!

Here's how we do our Rumbi Rice, but in all honesty we never really follow a recipe. And since we both make it it's never quite the same but always quite delicious! If anybody has a "real" copycat recipe from the actual restaurant we'd love to have it!

Rumbi Rice

3 cups arborio rice (jasmine rice is good too)
1 cup coconut milk (too much leaves a film on the roof of your mouth...yuck!)
1 can kidney beans drained and rinsed
salt to taste

Add all ingredients, except kidney beans, to your rice cooker, fill with water to the 3 cup line and then add the kidney beans. Cook per manufacturers instructions. If cooking on the stove, use coconut milk as part of your liquid, adding water to make up the difference according to the instructions on the rice package. Cook as directed on rice package.

Gluten Free Homemade Oreos

It's been 3 1/2 years since I've eaten an Oreo, let alone a homemade Oreo. I used to make them with a devils food cake mix and store bought cream cheese frosting. But alas, there's no way you can get me to spend $6 for a cake mix when I can make a better, least expensive one from scratch. As for store bought frosting, I only really bought it when I was in a pinch...I much prefer homemade...and the ingredient labels seem to be in a constant state of change so why risk the discouragement of not finding what I want when I can make it myself!

I had a friend in Arizona who used to make homemade Oreos completely from scratch and I'd forgotten how I preferred them to the cake mix variety until I happened upon a chocolate cookie recipe in the Martha Stewart April 2008 magazine. I decided to take Martha's recipe (click here) and fit it to my needs. I reduced the sugar in the original recipe because I was planning to make sandwich cookies and didn't want them to be overly sweet. I also substituted gluten free flour mix for the flour, reduced the butter so they wouldn't spread too much, added baking powder for a little loft, and added guar gum for mouth feel.

Here's what I came up with:
Homemade Oreos
  • 1 cup gluten free four blend
  • 1/3 cup Dutch cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon guar or xanthum gum
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  1. Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder,guar gum and salt. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter, sugar, and eggs on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add vanilla, and mix to combine. Gradually add dry ingredients, and combine with mixer on low speed. Cover bowl with plastic wrap, and chill until dough is firm, about 1 hour.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. drop dough by small spoonfuls onto greased baking sheets about 1 inch apart. Bake until set, about 7 -8 minutes. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. When cool use your favorite frosting to frost the underside of half the cookies and sandwich with another cookie of similar size (you want the flat side of each cookie next to the frosting). I used cream cheese frosting on half and chocolate frosting on the rest. Enjoy!

Conference Weekend Breakfast McMuffins

It has been our tradition to have a fun and creative breakfast during General Conference Weekend (Click here) One of our favorites is Egg McMuffins. We use Gluten Free Kinnikinnick muffins that are even better than the original ones. We then added egg, sausage, and condiments. Shane likes mayo, mustard, ketchup and cheese. Meredith likes ketchup only. You could use bacon, ham or any other toping. They are delicious!

Grandma Jacobs

While in Maryland we were able to take a drive up to York PA and visit Grandma Jacobs. When she heard we were coming she collected some snacks from her bingo activity to share with us. She is so cute! We were able to catch up on family news, look at each others pictures, and go for a walk. It was so good to see her. On the way home we stopped at Wegman's Market Cafe to get some lump crap California rolls. Most California rolls are made with imitation crab meat, which contains wheat, so I was pretty excited to find something gluten free!