Saturday, April 30, 2011

time to make the donuts... dunkin munchkin style

There's some key memories that I have from growing up in New England, days at the ocean, campfires with s'mores on maple branches, the smell of a forest heavy with pine, black flies and Dunkin' Donuts. We sadly found out when we moved west of the Mississippi that America does not run on Dunkin- just the east coast. Walk around Boston and you'll find a Dunkin on every block. I get jealous while back east when others enjoy Dunkin Donuts... especially Munchkins, little balls of happiness... unless you happen to be a glutard then the little ball of happiness becomes a little ball of great pain.
We've become good at making donuts (ah donuts...see memories here) but it was more of a french crueler style all light and airy. I found a post on Going Gluten Free for Dunkin Style Donuts and we used our first lazy off season Saturday to try it out.
We stuck to the recipe with just a few tweaks. I used Almond Milk and Artisan Gluten Free Flour Blend that is my go to flour blend. We tried powdered sugar to finish them off in but found out that both Dave and I prefer a cinnamon and sugar mix.  We used a fondue pot to keep the temp steady at 375 and did small batches. We learned that we don't have a fire extinguisher so we kept the baking soda handy and kept everything out of the way of the hot oil.

Mayhem and Chaos
Make the dough then let it rest as directed. Realize the two dogs are being very cute together and snap a photo of the lovable brothers before getting the oil heated and you area prepped.
baking soda for safety...   

a cookie dough scoop makes pretty and uniform balls
golden colored perfection
proper tools help a lot... like this fancy scooper

shake with cinnamon and sugar then enjoy!
It was a perfect off season Saturday project... for those unfamiliar with "off season" it's best defined as the time after winter and before summer while the ski area, the town and the people thaw out. Many people take this time to get out of town to warm locations. It's a very quiet time in town and can also be called mud season. Today it could be confused with winter as it's starting to snow again...

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

a bit of local love.... Rustico Ristorante

I'll be honest. I couldn't have guessed that I'd be back to Rustico... after all it's an upscale Italian resturant in Telluride which specializes in gluten filled pastas. I've had some great meals there and they helped me learn to love spinach. The time between ski season and the busy summer festival season is often called off season here in town and Rustico runs some great off season specials so when friends wanted to gather there for dinner I checked the website and made a phone call before committing to a Big Night Out this past Tuesday.

From Droid think outside
Caprese Salad is not dairy free but is a great love of mine. I'll cheat for dairy but wouldn't even think of cheating with gluten. I do wear the marks of the indiscretion on my face like a scarlet letter and feel sluggish for a day after but the flavor of tomoto, basil and cheese melding makes it hard to behave....

From Droid think outside
For the main course I enjoyed a modified Vitello al Carciofi, they left my thinly sliced veal un-breaded and gently sauteed it with artichokes, capers and white wine. (I could have also enjoyed Risotto too) it was a delight and I easily joined the clean plate club and had a great evening with good friends while avoiding gluten.

time flies...

It's been a busy end of the ski season here at campchaos. We enjoyed the final day of the season with friends and I learned the hard way that Hot Cocoa is to remain suspect... and spent the evening after the final afternoon in a gluten fog.... arugh.
On a lighter note I was able to do a comparison of New Planet's Brews....  Tread Lightly still reigns supreme for me over Off Grid. I'm sure there will be times where I will love Off Grid. It's got a heavier, molasses flavor and my palate likes the light tones of Tread Lightly. I had a friend set up a blind test for me but I'll be honest- the color gave it away.
I've been trying a twist on my classic banana bread and adding blueberries instead of chocolate chips. (YUM- altough next time I'm going to look for mini blueberries instead of large ones.)
I've also been perfecting my knife skills on my chinese food and trying lots of veggie combos, Dave headed back east for a bit so I was able to eat the same meal all week for lunch and dinner.

From Droid think outside

I've also been on a Udi's love fest and even enjoyed a bagel sandwich with Justin's Chocolate Nut Butter and Bananas.... highly recommend it for a case of the Monday's. It's even better when you can pair it with a pair of cute furry faces cuddling on a dog bed together...
We're just getting back from a mini-vacation to a popular National Park... stay tuned for more photo's like this... it's a mere 6 hour drive from Telluride and one of the more dog friendly park's I've been to.