Cilantro-Lime Rice

This is a simple suggestion, and really, doesn't even require a recipe. I love to pass on quick suggestions for sprucing up an ordinary side dish, though! I served this rice, flavored with cilantro and lime juice, with seasoned black beans and chunky salsa last night for dinner.

To make this dish, all you need is a pot of freshly cooked rice, some chopped cilantro, and several lime wedges. I cooked my rice in the rice cooker, flipped open the top, and then squeezed in the juice of about 1/2 a lime and stirred in the cilantro. Season with salt, and you're ready to go!

I hope you'll give this a try--or even use it as inspiration for another flavor combination. Rice can be boring, but I was thrilled with how much FLAVOR this version gives.

Ridiculously Easy Grilled Chicken {gluten, dairy, and soy free}

When summer starts up, I have a hard time adjusting to the heat. Don't get me wrong! I love the summer weather! But my body protests for a couple of weeks.

Anyway. The end result of a protesting body is a mama who doesn't really have much of an appetite for anything but watermelon, and a husband and small boy who aren't too thrilled with that option. What's a girl to do? Easy. Make it easy.

I spend as little time as possible in the kitchen by putting as MUCH as possible on the grill. Then, that fabulous husband I mentioned works his magic, and dinner is served.

This chicken is so easy, it doesn't really need a proper recipe. Just follow these steps:

1. Select an appropriate number of chicken breasts for your family.
2. Place the chicken breasts on a flat surface, cover with plastic wrap, and then pound the pieces to less than an inch thick.
3. Working one side at a time, rub a touch of olive oil on the chicken, and then sprinkle with your choice of seasonings. These have chili powder, cumin, and a light sprinkle of salt on them.
4. Transfer the chicken to the grill, and keep an eye on 'em. Remember, thin chicken will cook quickly!

Strawberry Pie {vegan, flourless, gluten free, soy free}

My hubby got a great deal on a BIG bunch of strawberries the other day. So what's a girl to do? Make strawberry pie, of course! My family all uses the same recipe, which calls for Jell-O. Cool! But... I didn't have any Jell-O on hand, and if I'd used it, my vegan friends wouldn't be up for trying this recipe.

So I went a different route, and boy, am I happy I did!

This recipe calls for the use of a food processor, but if you don't have one, it's ok. Slice the strawberries, and then use a potato masher to smoosh the berries into a nice mash. Your blender would also work.

For the Crust, You'll Need:
1 1/2 Cups Almond Meal
1/3 Cup Powdered Sugar
1/4 Cup Corn Syrup
3 Tbsp. Grapeseed Oil

To Make the Crust:
Combine the ingredients in mixing bowl, and then spread into the bottom of a pie plate. Work the crust up the sides until you've evenly covered the inside of the plate.
Place the crust in the fridge to cool while you make your filling.

This crust tastes, to me, like a sugar cookie. I swiped a couple of bites while I was pressing it into the pan, and could have kept going! If you'd like your crust to be a little less sugary, omit the powdered sugar and add some extra almond meal.

For the Filling, You'll Need:
4 Cups Strawberries {divided, and this is a rough measurement}
1 Cup Sugar
1/4 Cup Corn Starch
The Juice from 1/2 of a Lemon

To Make the Filling:
Clean up your strawberries. Wash them, remove the green and the core, if they're bigger berries.
Divide the berries, adding about two cups to your food processor. Process the berries, making a thick mash.
Slice the other two cups of berries and set them aside.
Add the processed/mashed berries to a sauce pan, and begin cooking them over medium heat.
Add the sugar, corn starch, and lemon juice.
{Tip: mix the sugar and corn starch before placing in the sauce pan to avoid clumpy corn starch.}
Stir the mixture frequently, while it cooks and begins to thicken. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to scrape the bottom of the pan so your filling doesn't stick and burn.
After several minutes, when the mixture is thick and jelly-like, remove it from the heat.
Stir in the remaining two cups of sliced berries, and then pour the filling into your crust.
Allow the mixture to cool for several minutes*, and then transfer to the fridge for several hours {or overnight} to set up.

*Food safety dictates that you not put something this hot in your fridge right away. It'll heat the other fridge occupants, and could result in some not-so-friendly bacteria. Let the pie cool for a bit on the counter first, then transfer the warm pie into the fridge.

Shared on... Just Another Meatless Monday, Melt In Your Mouth Monday, My Meatless Monday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Allergy Free Wednesday, Gluten Free Wednesdays

Summer Salad with Fresh Corn and Tomatoes {gluten, dairy, and soy free}

I pulled this salad together tonight and served it with grilled chicken. It was so yummy, and so fresh! Later this summer, nearly all of the ingredients will be available from our garden, so I can see a whole lot more of this salad in my future.

My measurements are approximate, so don't be anxious to tinker with the recipe a bit. Just pile everything into a bowl until it looks appealing to you!

1/3 Cup Cider Vinegar
2 Tbsp. Honey {or agave}
Salt &  Pepper
1/8 Cup Chopped, Fresh Basil
1/4 Cup Diced {Red} Bell Pepper
1/3 Cup Diced Red Onion
1/2 Cup Diced Cucumber
1/2 Cup Halved Cherry Tomatoes
1-2 Ears of Corn, {sliced off the cob}

To Make:
Combine cider vinegar, honey, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Whisk thoroughly, then set aside.
In a medium bowl, mix the chopped vegetables, then top with the cider vinegar mixture and stir to combine immediately before serving.

Shared on... Summer Salad Sundays

Vanilla Chai Freeze {gluten free, soy free, dairy free}

I know it's been discussed before, but I am a bit obsessed with chai tea. It's what I drink each morning, and it also has a way of making an appearance in my baked goods. {like the weeknight chocolate cake, and chai-spiced scones}

This morning, however, it's hot. Our house is warmer than usual on this early-summer day, and I'm running around checking items off my chore list before the weekend. My usual warm cup of chai just wasn't going to cut it! So I whipped this up instead.

1 Cup Almond Milk
2 Cups Chai Tea Concentrate {made ahead, so it's cold}
4 Cups Ice Cubes
1-2 tsp. Vanilla Extract

Combine the ingredients in your blender, and then mix, whipping the ingredients into a frothy treat.

Mainstream Substitutes for Allergy-Friendly Ingredients

Xanthan gum? Coconut Aminos? WHAT?!

I frequently receive questions about how to use my recipes with 'mainstream' ingredients, and usually answer on an individual basis, but I thought you might all benefit from a list you can refer back to.

Perhaps you don't have food allergies and you'd like to try something you find here, or perhaps you're simply avoiding one allergen, such as gluten or soy. The following list should help you with where to begin, but please keep in mind that my recipes are written for the products I use. I sometimes need to add more moisture to a recipe {applesauce, oil, etc.} to keep it from being dry or crumbly. If you feel like your version of a particular recipe could use less liquid, or more of something else, then give it a go!

If the recipe calls for:

...gluten free flour, use regular all-purpose flour. Omit the xanthan gum.

...Earth Balance, use your favorite butter or margarine.

...almond milk, coconut milk, etc., use your milk of choice. Cow's milk, soy, it's up to you!

...canola oil, grapeseed oil, etc., use your favorite oil. Keep in mind that some oils have a stronger taste than others and may not be appropriate for some recipes.

...coconut aminos, use regular {or gluten-free} soy sauce. Coconut aminos is sweeter than soy sauce, so you may wish to add a bit of brown sugar or honey when using mainstream soy sauce, depending on the recipe. You may also need to omit salt, if called for.

...peanut butter, use your favorite nut butter. Peanut Butter Cups, for example, would be equally tasty as Almond Butter Cups!

Some other tips:

Eggs and egg replacer are typically interchangeable in a recipe. It may take a couple of rounds to find the best consistency, but give it a try! You might surprise yourself!

Shortening, oil, or butter can all be used to grease a cake pan.

While it's true that not all chocolate is created equally, you should feel free to use whatever variety of chocolate chips you have on hand to suit your dietary restrictions.

Where gluten-free bread or pasta are called for, your favorite mainstream brand is a suitable replacement. Same goes for the allergen-friendly brand you keep stocked in your pantry.

There isn't a thing in the world stopping you from sprinkling your beloved, shredded mozzarella on top of a gluten free lasagna!

Gluten-free oats are no different, in the baking/food world, than standard oats. {The literal difference is simply the way they're handled, and on which equipment they're processed. Oats don't contain gluten, but mainstream oats have a very high potential for cross-contamination.}

Chicken broth and vegetable broth can typically be used interchangeably, and the meat omitted from a soup or stew to create a vegan or vegetarian dish. If you tolerate soy, try adding tofu in place of the meat.

I've added a permanent link to this post at the *top* of my recipe index page. It'll always be there, for you to refer back to!

Christina Weedon Photography {Spokane Maternity and Newborn Photographer}

I've thought a bit about it, and made the choice to... branch out a bit. Of course Dandelion's on the Wall is primarily about allergy-friendly food, but there is more to me than a heap of ingredients and measurements. I hope you'll enjoy these posts just as much as you enjoy the recipes and occasional crafty bits.

...and with that, please join me in celebrating this very special little girl and her arrival. She's truly a gem, and her mommy and dad hold a special place in my heart.


My 'fly' Photo Submission for the Epiphanie Camera Bags and My Four Hens Photo Contest!

Rich, Chewy Gluten-Free Brownies {soy free, dairy free, vegan option}

In my world, a good brownie is ridiculously dense and chewy. It's something you can really sink your teeth into, and it tastes even better cold. It has a little hint of frosting, and tastes of rich, dark chocolate.

This is that brownie.

I won't lie--I did a happy dance when I bit into that first brownie. 

Ready to make some of your own?

For the Brownies, You'll Need:
1 Cup Chocolate Chips
1/2 Cup Peanut Butter {or another nut butter}
1/2 Cup Earth Balance
1 1/2 Cups Sugar
1 Cup Almond Milk
1/2 Cup Applesauce
1 egg {vegan substitutes would work nicely here... 1/4 cup mashed banana, pumpkin puree, commercial egg replacer, etc.}
2 tsp. Vanilla
1 1/4 Cups Gluten Free Flour {I used Bob's Red Mill AP Blend}
3/4 Cup Cocoa Powder
2 Tbsp. Corn Starch
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Xanthan Gum

To Make the Brownies:
In a microwave-safe container, melt chocolate chips and peanut butter. Heat in 30-second intervals to avoid scorching.
In a large mixing bowl {or the bowl of your stand mixer}, cream the Earth Balance and sugar.
Add almond milk, applesauce, egg {or replacer}, and vanilla. Mix again to combine.
Add melted chocolate and peanut butter, and mix once more. Set aside.
In another bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, corn starch, salt, and xanthan gum. Add to the chocolate mixture in small increments, mixing as you go. Your batter will be quite thick.
Spread the batter into a greased {I used my palm shortening} 9x13 baking dish, and bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
Allow the brownies to sit for about ten minutes, and then top with frosting:

For the Frosting, You'll Need:
1/2 Cup Earth Balance
2 Cups Powdered Sugar
1/3 Cup Cocoa Powder
2-3 Tbsp. Almond Milk

To Make the Frosting:
In a mixing bowl, whip the Earth Balance a bit.
Gradually add powdered sugar and cocoa powder {you can pre-mix the two in another container, or add each separately}, working in small batches to keep from making a mess of your kitchen.
Continue with your mixer, adding almond milk one tablespoon at a time until you've got a creamy, spreadable frosting.
Spread over warm brownies. 

Stored in the fridge, these brownies are THICK and chewy. I love them that way! But you might prefer to serve yours at room temperature. 

Gluten, Dairy, and Soy Free Carrot Cake with Buttercream Frosting

You know... I used to believe that I didn't like carrot cake. As it turns out, I do like carrot cake! But, I confess to leaving out the nuts. Cake is delicious! And in their own way, pecans {or walnuts} are also great. But not together in a pan. No, no, no.

So--if you also love carrot cake, but you're shaking you head at my last statement, feel free to add in half a cup of chopped up pecans, so this cake is perfect for you. 

Either way, it'll be perfect. Moist and fluffy, and oh-so-tasty.

You'll Need:
2 Cups Gluten Free AP Flour {I used Bob's Red Mill}
1 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
2 tsp. Cinnamon
1 tsp. Nutmeg {freshly grated is my favorite}
2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Xanthan Gum
1 tsp. Salt
1/2 Cup Raisins
3 Eggs {vegan option: use egg replacer, plus an extra dollop of applesauce--about 2 Tbsp.}
2 1/2 Cups Shredded Carrot
1/2 Cup Applesauce
1/2 Cup Grapeseed Oil

To Make:
Grease a 9x13 baking dish, and set aside. {I use palm shortening for this step}
In a large bowl, combine the the flour, both sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, xanthan gum, and salt. Stir to mix, and then add raisins, stirring once more. Set aside.
In another, smaller bowl, lightly beat the eggs, and then mix in shredded carrot, applesauce and oil. Stir.
Add the wet ingredients to your flour mixture, and then stir thoroughly.
Pour the batter into your prepared baking dish, and then bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes, or until the center is set, and the cake is golden.
Remove from the oven, and serve warm as-is, or, allow to cool completely and then frost with buttercream {see below}, as I did. 

This is my go-to frosting recipe. {The original post can be seen here.} The recipe will make the perfect amount to top your cake.

You'll Need:

1/2 Cup Earth Balance {at room temperature*}
3 1/2 Cups Powdered Sugar {reduce to about 3 Cups for frosting a cake}
1 1/2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsp. Almond Milk

To Make:

Whip the Earth Balance until it is smooth and begins to fluff a bit.
Slowly add the powdered sugar to Earth Balance, mixing well.
Add the vanilla and almond milk.
Whip the mixture for several minutes until it is smooth and fluffy.

*I've learned, by making this frosting again and again, that I don't have to bring the Earth Balance to room temperature. I measure out 1/2 cup, add it to my mixing bowl, and then let it rest for just a minute or two. Beating it some with the electric mixer before adding any powdered sugar is all you need to set yourself in the right direction.

I've shared this recipe on... Melt-in-your-Mouth Monday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Crazy Sweet Tuesday, Tuesday Time Out, Totally Tasty Tuesdays, Allergy Free Wednesday, Made from Scratch Monday

No-Bake Peanut Butter Choco Bites {gluten free, dairy free, soy free}

A friend of mine {thanks, Heidi!} passed a recipe my way a few weeks ago. It was for a simple no-bake 'bite' of yumminess. Really, how can you go wrong when peanut butter and chocolate chips are involved? Anyway, Heidi's recipe had my wheels turning, and it all fell into place this afternoon when I spied an over-ripe, forgotten banana on the counter.

These little chocolate bites are full of good-for-you things, but they're pretty darned indulgent too. Even better, with the right ingredients {check your peanut butter and chocolate chip labels!}, they've got the potential to be free of refined/unnatural sugars.

1 1/2 Cups Oats {gluten free, of course! and I used the quick-cooking variety*}
1/2 Cup Peanut Butter {or other nut butter}
1 Very Ripe Banana {mashed very well}
1/2 Cup Chocolate Chips {completely optional; I'd also love to try dried cranberries}
1/4 Cup Honey
2 Tbsp. Cocoa Powder
1 tsp. Vanilla

*if you do not have quick-cooking oats, or prefer the old-fashioned variety, try pulsing them briefly in your food processor or blender to break them down a bit into smaller bits.

Combine the ingredients in a mixing bowl, stirring thoroughly to combine.
Using a small scoop {like this; or a spoon and your hands, though the scoop makes life easier}, scoop the mixture into balls and place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Place the bites in the fridge, on the baking sheet, and allow to chill for at least an hour. As they sit, the oats will take on a bit of the moisture and you'll be left with a chewy, gooey little treat.

Store, refrigerated, in an airtight container for several days.

Make Spanish-Style Rice in the Rice Cooker {vegan, gluten free, soy free}

I really love Spanish-style rice, but I confess that I'm not one to stand around watching rice simmer on the stove top. My rice cooker has been a life-saver in my kitchen, and I knew there had to be a way to make Spanish-style rice inside the cooker. As an added bonus, browning the rice in butter {or an equivalent} is skipped, eliminating a great deal of fat {and oils} from the recipe.

You'll Need:
2 Cups Rice
1 1/4 Cups Broth {chicken, or veggie for vegan rice}
1 Cup Tomato Sauce
1 14 oz. Can Tomatoes {with juice}
1/2 Cup Diced Green Chiles {make your own or use a 4 oz. can}
1/4 Cup Salsa {your favorite kind, mild, spicy... you choose!}
1/4 Cup Onion {diced}
1 tsp. Cumin
2 tsp. Chili Powder
Cilantro {chopped; optional}

To Make:
Place uncooked rice in your rice cooker, and pour in broth.
To your blender or food processor, add tomato sauce, tomatoes, green chiles, salsa, onion, cumin, and chili powder. Run your processor for several minutes to create a homogeneous mixture.
Add tomato mixture to your rice cooker, then stir to combine.
Run your cooker as usual, to cook the rice.
When the cooker is done, stir the rice, as a bit of the tomato mixture may have settled on the top. Stir in chopped cilantro, if desired, and serve.

Shared on... Allergy Friendly Friday, Meatless Mondays

Gluten Free Cranberry-Walnut Granola

Udi's Granola has been my go-to in the world of gluten-free granola. I love that their granola isn't syrupy-sweet, and that they use minimal ingredients. And the flavors are to die for! Unfortunately for my wallet, the littlest member of our family has also developed quite a taste for their Cranberry-Walnut variety. When a $6 bag of granola vanished in less than 48 hours, I knew it was time to come up with a recipe of my own.

I'm delighted to say that this recipe reminds me quite a bit of the Udi's variety, and that it passed the three-year-old test with flying colors!

4 Cups Gluten-Free Oats
1 Cup Walnuts {I chopped mine a bit for smaller pieces}
1/3 Cup Grapeseed Oil
1/2 Cup Honey
2 tsp. Vanilla
2 Cups Dried Cranberries

To Make:
Combine oats and walnuts in a large mixing bowl, and set aside.
In a small bowl, whisk oil, honey, and vanilla to combine. Believe it or not, it'll come together!
Pour the honey mixture over the oats, and then use a wooden spoon to thoroughly mix. You'll know you've done enough mixing when all of the oats have a bit of a wet sheen to them.
Line two baking sheets {jelly-roll pans are best, as they have sides} with parchment paper, and spread the mixture over the two baking sheets.
Bake at 300 degrees for about ten minutes, and then remove from the oven.
Using a spatula, scoop and turn the granola, then spread it on the pans again.
Return to the oven and bake for another eight to ten minutes, until golden brown.
Don't be alarmed if the granola still feels a bit 'soft' in places, as it will crisp up a bit as it cools.
When the granola has cooled, mix in cranberries, and then store in an air-tight container at room temperature.

For plain, Basic Granola... omit walnuts and cranberries. Add one extra cup oats.

For Cinnamon-Raisin Granola... omit walnuts and cranberries. Add two teaspoons cinnamon before baking, then add raisins after granola cools. You could also add chopped pecans.

I shared my recipe on... Allergy Free Wednesday, Made from Scratch Monday

The Farm Chicks {Antique Show: 2012}

{check out Meghan's take on the show, and  her scavenger hunt list! can you spot some of the list on my images?}  

Together with a couple of friends, I visited the 2012 Farm Chicks Antique Show over the weekend. This is my second time visiting the show, but my first time visiting with a camera in tow. I didn't have a plan, just snapped away at what caught my eye. Captions aren't really necessary, are they? Enjoy!

Chai Spiced Scones {gluten free, soy free, vegan}

It's no secret that I live and breathe by my morning cup of {homemade} chai. After several different batches of scones that just weren't quite right, these happened, and they were perfect. They're not overly sweet, and taste even better with a warm cup of tea.

2 Cups Gluten Free Flour
1/3 Cup Coconut Palm Sugar {plus an extra Tablespoon for the top of the scones}
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Xanthan Gum
1 tsp. Cinnamon
1 tsp. Cardamom
1 tsp. Nutmeg {I used freshly ground}
1/4 tsp. Salt
1/2 Cup Earth Balance {keep it cold! don't let it sit out before mixing into the batter}
1/2 Cup Almond Milk
1 tsp. Vanilla
1 tsp. Ginger {I used freshly ground}

To Make:
In a medium bowl, combine flour, palm sugar, baking soda, xanthan gum, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, and salt.
Add cold Earth Balance to the flour mixture, and then use a pastry cutter {or potato masher!} to incorporate. You'll see small clumps, and may need to clean off the pastry cutter once or twice.
To the mixture, add almond milk, vanilla, and ginger. Mix with a wooden spoon to combine.
You should have a somewhat sticky ball of dough at this point, that you'll want to scoop into your hands.
Turn the dough onto a parchment-lined baking sheet, and use your fingers to press the dough into a large, flat disc, about an inch thick.
Use a sharp knife to cut the dough into eight pie-shaped wedges, and then gently pull the pieces apart on your baking sheet, so they have room to puff up as they bake.
Sprinkle with additional palm sugar.
Bake at 375 degrees for about 15 minutes, until golden brown.

I've shared this recipe at... Made from Scratch Monday