Healthy Gluten Free Quinoa (Irish Pancakes)

Today we celebrate Shrove Tuesday, (the day before Ash Wednesday), and a time marked for feasting before the beginning of lent.  Traditionally its a time to use up any food that would not be part of the 40 days of fasting during Lent; so those more pleasurable foods such as eggs, dairy and meat are enjoyed in abundance.  Growing up my mother made very think pancakes more similar to french Crepes as opposed the the thicker American pancakes.  Boxty Pancakes are also very popular made with left over mashed potatoes and freshly grated potatoes and fried in the pan. But, I am excited to share a new pancake recipe with you that’s not only gluten free but includes protein packed quinoa.

This recipe is part of my 2017 Aprons Publix cooking schools tour sponsored by Kerrygold Irish butter and cheese and includes my yummy Dubliner…. So, how can you go wrong…?  Those of you who live in the cities of Sarasota, Tampa, Lakeland, Orlando, Jacksonville, Tallahassee and Atlanta please come and see me at the Aprons cooking school near you…. So, here’s the recipe for all to enjoy…

Dubliner Quinoa Pancakes

Ingredients:

1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped

2 cups cooked quinoa

1/2 large red bell pepper, chopped

1/2 cup shredded Kerrygold Dubliner Cheese

2 Tbsp morgue flour (or other gluten free based flour)

1 egg plus 2 egg whites, lightly beaten

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon Chile powder

Pinch sea salt

Dash black pepper

1/2 avocado, peeled and chopped

1/2 medium tomato, chopped

Olive oil cooking spray

 

Combine onion, quinoa, bell pepper, cheese, egg and egg whites, garlic and Chile powder, salt and pepper in a medium mixing bowl and mix gently with a spoon or spatula.  Heat a large skillet sprayed with cooking spray over medium-high heat.  Using a ½-cup measuring cup, measure half cup portions of the quinoa mixture and turn out into the pan, flattening each until 1/2-inch thick.  Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until bottom is browned and the cake is firm.  Flip  the pancakes over and cook for an additional 2 minutes.  Top each serving with half the chopped avocado and tomato, dividing equally. If serving as individual cakes, top each with 1 tablespoon of chopped avocado and tomato.  Makes 6 cakes.

Wishing everyone a blessed Shrove Tuesday!

Judith the Irish foodie

 

Ginger Pear & Parsnip Soup

pear-and-parsnip-soup-12The cooler Winter months are the perfect time for cooking root vegetables, especially when it comes to bowls of comforting soups, broths and stews. – such an Irish thing, and living in a warm climate such as Georgia, I always enjoy the opportunity for wonderful soups.

This week I had the opportunity to cook at the Piedmont Cancer Center in Atlanta with a menu featuring Winter Root Vegetables, which gave me the perfect opportunity to pull out some recipes from the homeland. – Growing up as a child in Ireland, my favorite vegetables were always mashed carrots with parsnips, and along with roasted parsnips, -essential parts of a traditional Irish Sunday roast dinner. So, when creating nutritious recipes for my Root Vegetable class I was naturally drawn to include parsnips in the menu.

When preparing this delicious soup, the inclusion of fresh ginger and curry, alongside the root vegetables, gives this soup a modern Asian flair while the fresh pears add a natural sweetness. Julienne matchstick pears on top, then gives the dish a refreshing fresh and surprising crunch.  

I do hope you enjoy this healthy recipe which is so good for the body and great the soul!  Finish the soup with a little cream, or olive oil -your choice! It’s all good…

Parsnip and Ginger Pear Soup (with fresh pear garnish and olive oil)
 

  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil or Kerrygold butter
  • 1 medium (1 cup) Vidalia onions (chopped)
  • 1 celery stick (3/4 cup diced)
  • 4 parsnips (4 cups peeled and diced)
  • 2 medium (1 ½ cups) pears (peeled and chopped)
  • 2 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 6 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 cups pear juice
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • (to garnish)
  • ½ pear (cut in to matchsticks)
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • Drizzle of good olive oil (or creame fraiche)

How to make it
 

  1. In a large soup pot, melt the butter or coconut oil and sauté the onions, celery, parsnips, pears and grated fresh ginger over a medium to low heat, then over and cook until they are fragrant and beginning to color for another 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add the stock, pear juice, curry powder and salt and pepper and simmer for 25 minutes until all the ingredients are tender and the liquid has slightly reduced. Taste to adjust seasoning.
  3. Using a hand blender puree the soup until smooth or use a food processor.
  4. To serve place 1 tsp of chopped pear in each warm bowl followed by the soup and then drizzle with a little olive oil.

Judith the Irish foodie

Fifteens are a sweet taste of home

A wee taste of home

Northern Irish Fridge Slice

Last week I hosted a dessert coffee evening (thanks to Oli and Ve) for my Northern Irish friend and outstanding singer-songwriter Warren Attwell , who is on his US tour (he’s amazinghttp://www.warrenattwell.com/) and “fifteens” were on the menu. – and what are ‘fifteens’ I can hear you asking? Something more than fourteen, something less than sixteen?

Yes, to my surmise the recipe was unknown to my Atlanta guests; so, I promised to share the recipe on my food blog. The recipe is easy peasy to remember because it’s all about fifteen, hence the name (15 digestive biscuits, 15 marshmallows, 15 cherries and it slices in to 15 pieces)…fifteens, get it?  It’s one of those recipes growing up that we always had the ingredients for in the cupboards, and they could be whipped up quite quickly for an impromptu party or a spontaneous supper when the preacher drops by! …Just one tip for my US followers is to purchase the Digestive Biscuits in the British section of your local grocery store or specialized shop (Grahame crackers are not just as tasty).  Hope you enjoy a Northern Irish fridge cake classic!

Fifteens…(now you know!)

  • 15 Digestive biscuits (8 Grahame Crackers)
  • 15 Marshmallows (cut in to four)
  • 15 Glaze Cherries (cut in half) (or dried cherries)
  • 200 ml sweetened condensed milk (1/2 tin)
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • Desiccated coconut (for rolling)

How to make them:

  1. In a food processor crush the digestive biscuits or Grahame crackers.
  2. In a large bowl mix the crushed biscuits, chopped marshmallows and cherries and the sweetened condensed milk and water.
  3. Lay out a large sheet of parchment or plastic wrap and sprinkle with coconut. Spread the prepared mixture along the plastic wrap to form a long sausage shape.  Sprinkle more coconut over the top of the mixture and then begin to roll using the parchment paper to form a circular sausage shape.  Twist both ends to seal.
  4. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or allow to sit overnight before slicing.
  5. Slice in to 15 pieces (naturally)

Enjoy!

Judie the Irish foodie

Best thing I ever ate in Ireland (part 2)

Congratulations to Chef Noel McMeel and the Lough Erne for continued Success!  This month Chef Noel dined as a guest at the White House and is featured in a double page spread in Bon appetit magazne.  Chef Noel McMeel says “What we eat has to delight the taste buds, and nourish body and soul”.  The bountiful feast is influenced by heritage, inspired by the season and focused on local.  So, my series two in the best thing I ever ate in Ireland goes to Noel McMeel.  “Fillet of Kettyle Irish Beef, Parsley and Potato Puree, Spinach, Celeriac Remoulade, Roast Beef Sauce”

Shamrock and Peach tours will be visiting the table of Noel McMeel and his masterful chef team at the Lough Erne this June.  Looking forward to enjoying the bounty with many of you and for those who have been on one of my tours enjoy the memory and pick up your own copy of “Bon appeetit” today!

Jump in to Ireland and Joy in the Journey!

Judith the Irish foodie

Irish Valentine (Dark Chocolate Shots)

Valentine's Day Soup

Chocolate Love Shots

Happy Valentine’s Y’all from Atlanta Georgia!   I hope everyone is having a fun Valentines and sure hope that the love in your life took you out and made your feel oh so special? Yes…?

So, what sweet treat is an Irish lass serving for Valentine’s day you ask? Well, this year I am pleased to share my recipe for Dark Chocolate Shots that’s been a big hit at our house today. When I am home in Ireland, leading my tour groups, Chefs often send out ‘Pre-desserts’, which are delicious little teasers. So, a Dark Chocolate shot is a fun addition to any party or a romantic dinner for two to whet the appetite before dessert.

Wishing you a very happy Valentine’s Day with all of my love..

Here is the easy recipe and as always enjoy!

Dark Chocolate shots 

(serves 4)

  • 1 1/2 cups of whole milk
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ cup dark chocolate (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup of light whipping cream

How to make it

  1. Combine the sugar and cornstarch and slowly whisk in 1 1/2 cups of the cold milk.
  2. Transfer to a medium heavy based saucepan and begin to heat slowly stirring until it begins to thicken on a low simmer.
  3. Remove the milk mixture from the heat and stir in the chocolate chips and a pinch of salt.
  4. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate for 4 hours.
  5. Before serving whisk in 1 cup of light cream.

Judith the Irish Foodie

A Sweet Ending to an Irish Christmas Joy!

Chocolate swirl fudge-7

This year we had a sweet ending at Christmas when Shamrock and Peach catered the end of year Christmas party for the Gettys in Nashville Tennessee, home of country music. The party was a celebration of “Joy, An Irish Christmas Tour’ presented in 20 cities in the US by Keith and Kristen Getty and everyone at Getty music. The tour was attended by a whopping 60,000 people across North America and in several prestigious concert halls including Carnegie Hall (New York) and the fabulous Fox Theatre here in Atlanta.

We were invited to the concert at the Fox Theater in Atlanta the evening before we drove to Tennessee, and were literally blown away by the standard of the musicianship. Wow!…the singing, the dancing, the playing – not to mention some on stage who played while dancing!! – no mean feat! The music itself gave tribute to the roots of Bluegrass music with guest Ricky Skaggs tearing up the stage with Bluegrass examples of how the Irish have impacted the culture of the Southlands and it’s so inspiring that I get to celebrate those same roots through the language of really great food.

Keith Getty even gave a shout out to ‘The Shamrock and Peach’ book when referring to marriage of Ireland to the Southlands and it was such an honor and it literally took my breath away to be considered!

Hope you enjoy a few pictures from our event and a super yummy idea to swirl melted chocolate through the Irish butter fudge (recipe in my cook book).  A sweet ending to my menu and year!

Wishing you a touch of Irish Joy!

Judith the Irish foodie

White Chocolate Pumpkin Macaroons

Pumpkin Style Macaroons

Pumpkin and White Chocolate buttercream

I love this time of year, as I know many of you do also, and in concert with all the pumpkins and apples and Fall goodness may I present a new favorite for you…yep, White Chocolate Pumpkin Macaroons  

Thanks to my friend Chloe, who just graduated in Baking and Patisserie Arts from Le Cordon Bleu in Atlanta, we created this seasonal fall Macaroon with a delicious Pumpkin and White Chocolate buttercream. yum.

Here is the recipe for our Fall Macaroons (and thank you to the talented Chloe and we wish you every possible success for your future career in the Patisserie Arts)!

Pumpkin White Chocolate Macaroon

For the cookie:

4.23 oz almond flour/meal

7.05 oz confectioner’s sugar

3.17 oz egg whites (~3 large egg whites) at room temperature

¼ tsp cream of tartar

Pinch of salt

1.76 oz granulated sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

 

  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper
  2. Prepare a pastry bag with a large round tip
  3. Using a food processor, pulse the powdered sugar and almond flour into a powder
  4. Sift several times until there is little to no almond bits left
  5. In electric mixer, whisk egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar. Beat until egg whites foam
  6. With mixer on medium high, add sugar 1-2 Tbsp at a time and continue until stiff peaks form
  7. Add in vanilla and beat for an additional minute to incorporate
  8. Sift the almond flour and confectioner’s sugar and gently fold into egg whites gradually
  9. Transfer batter into pastry bag and pipe onto baking sheet, making evenly sized circles
  10. Let shells sit for 20-30 minutes to dry. Check for a skin to form on the top of the cookie (should not stick to finger when touched)
  11. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Bake for 12-13 minutes or until shell has hardened. Be sure to rotate cookies halfway through baking
  12. Cool completely on cookie sheets before peeling from the parchment

For the filling:

3/8 cup Kerrygold butter at room temperature

1/8-1/6 cup pumpkin puree

3/8 cup white chocolate

½ tsp vanilla extract

2-3 cups confectioner’s sugar

 

  1. Prepare a piping bag with a large round tip
  2. Whip the butter and pumpkin puree until fluffy and light in color
  3. Melt the white chocolate over a double boiler and drizzle into the butter mixture while slowly continuing to whip
  4. Once fully incorporated, add vanilla and continue to whip for 30 seconds longer
  5. Gradually add the confectioner’s sugar until desired piping consistency has been reached
  6. Transfer filling into the piping bag and pipe a small amount onto one cookie
  7. Top with another cookie to make the macaroon sandwich

Happy Fall Baking!

Judith the Irish Foodie

Attack of the gluten free Halloween Pumpkin Pie!

Indulge for Halloween

Pumpkin Pie Pudding for Halloween

Did you know that Halloween actually originated in Ireland? Yup, who else would be crazy enough to create such mayhem I hear you ask! Truthfully though, I’m not one big on scary stuff, but I can’t wait until the doorbell rings and all those kids in fancy dress costumes come tumbling up onto my porch with eyes wide open, grasping for that candy…it’s really a great atmosphere in our neighborhood.

I am also planning to invite a few friends over to my house for a special Halloween party, and one of my favorite fall desserts that will be on the menu is my super special Halloween Pumpkin Pie Pudding. This fabulous recipe was shared by me dear friend Sharin (who is actually gluten free). This will bring a smile to every ghost and ghoul, and I have to say that I am such a fan of the texture of creamy pudding and love that it can be lightened up by using rice milk and Greek yogurt…

So here is the recipe (treating)

Halloween Pumpkin Pie Pudding

(serves 4-6)

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 6 Tbsp tapioca flour/starch
  • 2 cups whole milk (or substitute with rice milk if dairy free)
  • 4 eggs (beaten)
  • 1 cup cooked canned pumpkin
  • ¼ tsp real salt
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger, grated (juice)
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp tsp ground cloves
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • ½ cup full fat Greek plain yogurt
  • (pumpkin cream)
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ cup pumpkin
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar

(How to make it) 

  1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine brown sugar and tapioca flour/starch.
  2. Combine milk and eggs, stirring well with a whisk.
  3. Combine pumpkin, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, gloves and vanilla in a bowl and whisk well. Slowly add pumpkin mixture to milk mixture, whisking constantly.
  4. Place pan over low heat and cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring constantly. Do not boil. Allow pudding to cool.
  5. Fold in the Greek Yogurt.
  6. To make the pumpkin cream whip, pumpkin and powdered sugar together.
  7. Spoon or pipe the pudding in to a small martini glass or small Mason jar and layer with the pumpkin cream. Delicious with a ginger snap cookie for dipping.

Happy Trick or Treating

Judith the Irish Foodie

Pumpkin Latte – Have it your way!

 

Fall Drinks

Latte – have it your way!

The joyous fall season has begun and so pumpkin mania begins in Georgia. It seems we are all obsessed by all things made with pumpkin this time of year, and those big orange gourds do make some wonderful things…so, what about this one to make and sip on your way to the office as you cruise past those falling leaves!  Go on try it Irish style with Whiskey, with coffee for a morning wake up boost or the Dairy Free Latte courtesy of my dear friend Sharon sipping with me in the pic below!

Enjoy!

Pumpkin Latte (have it your way!!)

(serves 6)

(Coffee Late)

  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup cream
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 Tbsp vanilla
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cups hot fresh French pressed coffee
  • ¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg (plus more to serve)

(Dairy and Caffeine Free Latte)

  • 2 cups coconut creamer
  • 4 cups almond milk
  • 2/3 cup evaporated cane sugar
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 Tbsp vanilla
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg (plus more to serve)

(Irish Style Late)

  • Add 2 Tbsp of Irish Whiskey per serving to the Coffee or Dairy and Caffeine Free Late

How to make it

  1. In a large sauce pan, combine the milk, cream and sugar. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved.
  2. Whisk in the pumpkin, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
  3. Bring the latte to a gentle boil and pour in to warmed glasses for the Dairy Free Latte and grate a little fresh nutmeg. (If you are making the Coffee Latte top each glass with some fresh hot French pressed coffee and stir to combine and don’t’ forget a little Whiskey for an Irish Style Latte).

Enjoy the season…and watch this space for more Autumnal goodies!

Judie the Irish Foodie

Fall Apple Scones (with Walnuts and Irish Oats)

Farm fresh apples

Bramley Co Armagh Apples

 So, I wanted to follow up with my recipe for Fall Apple, Oat and Walnut Scones.  I hope you have been waiting with bated breath from my last apple butter post? Late September is the time of year where we all begin to celebrate all things apples.  So may I suggest there no better way of enjoying the season than by baking some fall Apple scones?  Hearty Oatmeal and apples make these scones perfect for breakfast or that mid morning snack?  I featured the scones recently at my fall tea cooking class at Wholefoods market and they were a huge hit. I encourage you to go ahead and take time to enjoy this bountiful fall harvest season and eat more apples when they are farm fresh. Oh, and this photo is taken in Northern Ireland at my high school friend Stephen Kane’s farm; and his freshly picked apples are the best. Thanks Stephen for allowing Gary to come and take photos of your delicious Bramley’s!

Apple and Walnut Oatmeal Scones (with Apple Butter)

 

(makes 12 scones)

  • 1 cup quick cooking Irish rolled oats
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ cup unsalted Kerrygold butter (cold)
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 small apple (finely grated)
  • ½ cup walnuts (toasted) (plus ¼ cup or 12 pieces for garnishing the scone)
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • (topping)
  • 5 Tbsp salted butter
  • 5 Tbsp Apple Butter

How to make it:

 

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place oats on a baking sheet and toast for a few minutes until lightly browned and set aside. While oven is still hot toast the walnuts for 4-5 minutes until golden brown. Reserve 12 pieces to garnish each scone and chop the remaining nuts finely.
  2. Combine cooled oats, four, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Cut in butter until crumbly using a food processor and stir in the nuts.
  4. Beat the buttermilk and egg together and stir in the grated apple. Slowly combine with the dry ingredients.
  5. Turn dough out on to a lightly floured surface. Roll out dough with lightly floured  surface. Fold over dough and then knead 4-5 times.
  6. Cut scones using a 1”biscuit cutter or in to 2 6” circles about ¾” thick.
  7. Brush dough with egg wash and sprinkle some Scottish fine oats on top.
  8. Bake at 425 degrees for first 10 minutes and then turn down to 350 degrees for 5 more minutes.
  9. To serve cut each scone in half and spread a thin layer of Kerrygold salted butter. Using a teaspoon add a little apple butter. Garnish with a toasted walnut.

Enjoy apple picking wherever you are and keep it local!

Judith the Irish foodie