Raspberry Chicken

I do love raspberries but it never occurred to me to use them in savory dishes. This one takes some time to make the sauce but it’s so succulent and rich, the time is worth it. The sauce can be made ahead and frozen. In fact, with the chicken I used, I had an extra 2 cups of sauce when I was finished so I put it in the freezer for another time. The recipe may not be a fast one to complete, but it is fairly easy to make. And very easy to enjoy! I used a little vinegar and honey but if you can have white wine, feel free to substitute one cup of white wine for the vinegar and honey. Makes 4-6 servings.

In a medium saucepan, bring to a boil:

32 ounces of chicken stock

2 teaspoons minced garlic

Boil for about 15-20 minutes until the stock is reduced by half. Add:

1 cup cranberry juice

3 cups raspberries (fresh or frozen)

2 tablespoons seasoned vinegar (this is a vinegar which has a small amount of sugar and seasonings added)

2 tablespoons honey

Boil until reduced by half, about 30-45 minutes. Strain the sauce to remove most of the raspberry seeds. Return to saucepan and return to heat, low heat. Make a slurry with:

1/4 cup water

2 tablespoons cornstarch, tapioca starch, or arrowroot

Add the slurry to the sauce, increasing the heat to medium, and stir until the sauce thickens, about 2 or 3 minutes. Reduce heat to low, simmer. While the sauce is reducing, cut into chunks:

8 boneless skinless chicken thighs and/or breasts

In a ziplock gallon storage bag combine:

1/2 cup all purpose gluten free flour

1/4 cup tapioca or casaba flour

1/2 teaspoon herbamare (or sea salt)

1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

When the sauce is ready, add the chicken to the mixed flour and shake to coat all the chicken chunks. Heat in a large skillet:

1/2 cup olive oil

When the oil is hot (shimmering in the pan), add the chicken chunks individually, shaking off any excess flour, and cook, turning once, for 2-5 minutes depending on the size of the chunks or until cooked. Using a slotted spoon, remove the chicken from the oil and add to the sauce.

Serve over brown rice or mashed potatoes. Garnish with fresh raspberries and scallions.

Pumpkin Spice Stuffed French Toast (dairy-free, gluten-free, egg-free, vegan)

I’ve always wanted to try stuffed French toast but how to make French toast without eggs was the dilemma.  Here’s the solution.  It takes a bit of forethought but its well worth the effort.  Makes four servings.

You’ll need:

  • 8 slices of gluten-free bread, the thicker the better
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 tablespoon date sugar
  • 6 ounces of non-dairy cream cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup milk of choice
  • 2 tablespoons ground flax
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Dash of salt
  • 1 cup cranberry compote (see separate recipe)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Spray a 8×10 inch baking dish.  Mix:

  • 6 ounces of cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 tablespoon date sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Using a fork, mix until well blended.  Spread on all 8 slices of bread.  Heat the milk and add the ground flax.  Let cool until just warm.  Add the baking powder, salt and vanilla and whisk to combine.  Spread some of the cream cheese mixture on each of the bread slices.  Add a tablespoon of cranberry compote to 4 slices.  Top those slices with the other 4 slices of bread.  Place in the baking dish.  Top with the milk mixture.  Let sit 15 minutes and then turn the bread over so that the other side can absorb milk mixture.  Refrigerate for 1 hour.  Turn the bread over again.  

In a 10-12″ skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil (or your oil of choice).  Add the 4 bread pieces and cook over medium low heat for 5-6 minutes or until golden brown.  Turn over and repeat.  The slices may slip slightly from the cream cheese stuffing getting warm so be careful in turning.  Here we want to allow the milk mixture to cook along with the bread but not overheat the middle cream cheese mixture which will then run out of the bread thereby taking away the “stuffed” part of the French toast.  So keep the heat fairly low even it takes slightly longer to cook.  When done, slice each diagonally and top with more cranberry compote or maple syrup if preferred.

Alternatives:  If you don’t like pumpkin and cranberries here are some alternatives.  Use instead of the pumpkin, apple or pear sauce (preferably chunky) along with a berry jam or apple butter.  OR delete the pumpkin from the cream cheese mixture and use strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, blueberry, or cherry jam instead of the cranberry compote.

Chicken and Cranberry Salad with Green Goddess Dressing (dairy-free, gluten-free, egg-free, nut-free)

As all my allergies progressed, one of the things that most bothered me was a sensitivity to leafy green vegetables.  No more salad, what was I going to do!  Then I discovered that I could eat red leaf lettuces, what a relief.  Now I have a salad almost daily and here’s one of my favorites.  I really like various textures in my salads so I add crunchy ingredients as well as softer ones.  Green Goddess dressing usually has walnuts in it but since I’m allergic to nuts, I used pumpkin seeds instead.  You could substitute sunflower seeds.

You’ll need for the salad (for 2 entries or 4-6 side salads):

  • 1 head of red Romaine, cleaned and broken into bite-size pieces
  • 1 cucumber sliced
  • 2-3 small tomatoes
  • 2 wedges of jicama, diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, diced
  • several scallions or some red onion diced, optional
  • 8 ounces of cooked chicken, diced
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of dried cranberries (I used the kind sweetened with fruit juice and unsulphered)

For the dressing, in a food processor put:

  • 1 ripe avocado, skinned and pitted
  • 1/4 cup dried parsley, or 1/2 cup fresh parsley (you can add more if you like parsley; not one of my favorite herbs so I didn’t use much)
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice (or lemon juice if you prefer)
  • 2 tablespoons ground pumpkin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Water to get to dressing consistency, 1/4-1 cup (my dressing came out fairly thick and I used 1/2 cup of water)

Blend until creamy and all ingredients are combined.  Here, again, I used some roasted whole coriander seeds that I pulsed in my spice grinder so they were not fully ground and the pumpkin seeds were also only partially ground.  This added some crunchy texture to the dressing.