Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Gluten-Free Tender Kidneys with Onion & Lemon

August 7th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN


If you have not had the opportunity to taste kidneys, you can experience their delicate texture and rich flavor with this easy recipe. Here are the huge health benefits for 100 grams of lamb kidney having only 137 calories:24 grams protein, 218 ug selenium, 12 mg iron, 4 mg zinc, 290 mg phosphorus, 178 mg potassium, vitamin B2 (riboflavin), 6 mg vitamin B3 (niacin), 81 mg vitamin B12, 455 units vitamin A.

Ingredients
  • 1 lamb or veal kidney for each person
  • 1 tablespoon butter or bacon fat or olive oil
  • ¼ cup onion, sliced or chopped
  • lemon wedge

 

Equipment

Skillet.

Process

Remove outer membranes. Slice each kidney in half lengthwise.  Use kitchen scissors to remove white channels and fat.  Rinse thoroughly, soak in a large pot of cold water 10 minutes, then rinse again. Dry on paper towels.

Saute kidney halves in fat 10 to 15 minutes, turning several times.  Sprinkle with lemon.  Serve on gluten-free toast topped with onion, or serve with a pasta, and Romaine Salad with Fresh Pears.


Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Gluten-free Luscious Berry Slush or Sorbet

August 7th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

How soon can you eat this delectable treat? As soon as you can blenderize four ultra nutritious ingredients! Naturally sweet berries and their seeds provide excellent fiber with a variety of  vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants.  Creamy rich coconut milk fights bacteria and viruses while boosting good cholesterol and decreasing bad cholesterol.  

Ingredients
  • 1 cup frozen mixed berries (blueberries, raspberries,blackberries)
  • 1/4 cup black raspberry spreadable fruit
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup canned gluten-free coconut milk without preservatives

 

Equipment

Blender or food processor.

Process

Whip all ingredients in a blender or food processor — that’s it!  Spoon the slush into 2 dessert dishes. If you like it more like sorbet, just put the dishes in the freezer until firm but not hard, about fifteen minutes.

Serves 2

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Gluten-Free Chinese Egg Fried Rice

August 7th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Fried rice is a great way to save time in the kitchen. This easy recipe uses nutritious eggs and leftover rice for a delicious meal or side dish. You can add whatever meat and vegetables you have on hand.

Ingredients
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon gluten-free soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons peanut or canola oil
  • ¼ cup (optional) bacon or cooked meat, shrimp, fish chicken, or fried tofu, chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped scallions
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced vegetables such as carrots, mushrooms, zucchini, green peas or sweet corn
  • 3 ½ cups cooked long grain rice (cold or cooled to room temperature)

 

Equipment

Wok or large skillet.

Process

In a small bowl, beat the eggs, soy sauce and salt. Set aside. Prepare vegetables and meat or tofu if using.

Heat a wok or skillet over high heat. Add the oil. If using bacon or fresh meat, stir in until fried then stir-in the vegetables. As food is cooked, push to the sides. Add the cooked meat then push to side as it heats.

Make a space and add the egg mixture so it cooks separately. Sprinkle scallions and stir in. If using a skillet, it may be necessary to remove the cooked food to a heated dish to cook rice.

Add the rice, pushing the rice grains against the sides of the wok or skillet so they individually fry. Stir-fry for 3 minutes.

Serves 2 to 4 depending whether used as side or entree.

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Gluten-Free Tasty Tofu Appetizer

August 7th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Try this tasty, nutritious, easy-to-make appetizer. Or add flavored tofu pieces to a bowl of salad greens tossed with a vinaigrette dressing for a light lunch idea. Tofu is rich in potassium, calcium and protein.

Ingredients
  • 1 package of firm tofu cut into ¼ inch slices
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 fresh scallion (green onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons wheat-free gluten-free soy sauce
  • Black pepper to shake

 

Equipment

Skillet.

Process

Add oil to large skillet set on medium heat.  When oil is heated, arrange tofu slices evenly in skillet.  Sprinkle tofu with 1 tablespoon of the soy sauce and shake black pepper.  Cook 4 minutes.  Turn and sprinkle tofu with the remaining soy sauce and shake black pepper.  Add scallions and garlic. Cook 4 minutes, or until golden.  Serve hot.  Makes 4 portions.

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Gluten-Free Spritz Cookies

August 7th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Pressed cookies are fun to make and a delight to eat. Try this version to create your own wonderful tradition. If making dairy-free, you will need to adjust for liquid differences of butter substitutes. Use this guide: if you choose a soft butter substitute, use a medium egg. If you use a solid margarine, use a large egg. Do not use X-large eggs in any case. Remember not to shake down or pack the flour in a measuring cup, rather use a measured scoop and scrape the top with a flat blade to level.

Ingredients
  • 2 cups fine white rice flour
  • 2 tablespoon tapioca starch or cornstarch
  • 1 cup butter or substitute (not the light kind that contains water)
  • 1 cup fructose or sugar
  • ½ teaspoon gluten-free almond extract
  • ½ teaspoon gluten-free real vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg

 

Equipment

Cookie sheets. Shiny baking sheets work best. Dark sheets need a lower temperature of 350 degrees to avoid browning bottoms.

Process

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Combine dry ingredients in mixing bowl and whisk together with wire whip. Cream butter and fructose. Blend in egg and extracts. Stir dry ingredients into the creamed mixture with a large wooden spoon. Blend well but do not beat. Dough should be soft. Chill dough 10 minutes.

Add a quarter cup of dough to the cookie press to check dough consistency. If dough is too sticky, add a tablespoon of rice flour at a time to correct. If desired, tint dough with food coloring. Press dough into desired shapes on an ungreased cookie sheet. Decorate!

Bake 8 to 10 minutes depending on oven variance. Cookies are baked when surface appears dry. Allow to cool a few minutes, then remove cookies to wire rack. Makes about 6 dozen depending on shapes.

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Gluten-Free Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

August 7th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

gluten free peanut butter cookiesThese delicious, easy-to-make (gluten-free, cane sugar-free, dairy-free) cookies were a sensation when they were first introduced as — peanut butter kisses. They remain a standby today. Instead of topping the dough with a milk chocolate candy, this recipe incorporates unsweetened chocolate into the dough and uses fructose for those of us who do not eat sugar. Both eggs and peanuts are nutritionally dense, providing an excellent source of high quality protein. Chocolate ups the mineral and antioxidant value.

Ingredients
  • 1 cup gluten-free peanut butter
  • ¾ cup fructose
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon gluten-free real vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 oz. shaved unsweetened chocolate

 

Equipment

Cookie sheets. Shiny baking sheets work best. Dark sheets need a lower temperature of 350 degrees to avoid browning bottoms.

Process

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cream peanut butter, baking powder and fructose. Beat in egg and extracts. Dough should be firm.

Form into 1 inch balls then make desired shapes directly onto ungreased baking sheets.

  • Press with a fork to make flat shapes.
  • Roll into logs.
  • Form bells or other shapes with your fingers.
  • Make an indent with your fingertip, then fill with a fourth teaspoon of a fruit spread or a chocolate drop.

 

Bake 8 minutes depending on oven variance. Be careful not to brown. Allow to cool a few minutes, then remove cookies to wire rack. Makes about 3 dozen depending on shapes.

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Gluten-Free Thumb Print Cookies

August 7th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

These scrumptious cookies are rich in calcium and protein. They are delicate and tasty, yet easy to make.

Ingredients
  • 11/2 cups fine white rice flour
  • ½ cup tapioca starch
  • ½ teaspoon xanthan gum
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup fructose or sugar
  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks) or gluten-free margarine (not the light kind that contains water)
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup walnuts, chopped
  • ½ cup fruit jam (not jelly) such as raspberry, strawberry, apricot, pineapple

 

Equipment

Cookie sheets.

Process

Mix flours, salt, xanthan gum, and fructose in a medium bowl.  Using a pastry blender, cut butter into the flour mixture until it looks like coarse crumbs.  Mix in the beaten egg and sour cream to combine. Form into a disc shape, then wrap in plastic wrap.  Refrigerate a half hour to chill dough for easy handling.

To make cookies, form teaspoonsful of dough into balls, spacing about an inch apart on lightly greased baking sheets.  Using your thumb, make a deep indentation without going through bottom of cookie.  Fill indents with ½ teaspoon jam, then sprinkle tops with walnuts.  Bake about 15 minutes, or until golden.  Cool on wire rack.

A five year old Canadian boy, diagnosed with severe autism, was cured when the true cause of his mental disorder was found to be celiac disease and he was treated with a gluten-free diet and nutritional supplements.

Photo originally posted to Flickr as "Jack"

Photo originally posted to Flickr as “Jack”

His autism was cured because he was never really autistic in the first place. He had celiac disease, an immune response to wheat, barley, rye and oats that damages the intestines leading to malabsorption of nutrients.

Gluten-restricted diets have become increasingly popular among parents seeking treatment for children diagnosed with autism.(1)

What if certain children who are diagnosed with autism actually have celiac disease?

Neurological disorders stemming from celiac disease have been widely documented in medical literature. Some of these conditions include poor balance, tremors, migraines, chronic fatigue, schizophrenia, epilepsy, apathy, depression, insomnia, behavioral disorders, inability to concentrate and anxiety.(2)

Many of these issues are due to nutritional deficiencies resulting from the intestinal damage that celiac disease causes. If caused by celiac disease, they improve once gluten is removed from the diet and the intestine heals and functions properly.

Genuis and Bouchard, researchers at the University of Alberta, recently published the case of the 5-year-old boy who had been diagnosed with severe autism at a specialty clinic for autistic spectrum disorders. After an initial investigation suggested underlying celiac disease and varied nutrient deficiencies, a gluten-free diet was instituted.(1) His diet and supplements were adjusted to secure nutritional sufficiency.

The patient’s gastrointestinal symptoms rapidly resolved, and signs and symptoms suggestive of autism progressively abated.(1)

This case is an example of a common malabsorption syndrome (celiac disease) associated with central nervous system dysfunction and suggests that in some cases, nutritional deficiency may be a cause of developmental delay.

Genuis and Bouchard recommended that all children with neurodevelopmental problems

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Gluten-Free Apricot Jam Cookies

August 6th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

These yummy cookies are easy to make and store well in the freezer.

Ingredients
  • ¾ cup butter or GF margarine or transfat free shortening
  • 2/3 cup fructose
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Dry ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cup white rice flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca or cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons GF baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp xanthan gum
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
Equipment

Cookie sheet.

Process

Beat first five ingredients together in the mixing bowl.

Blend dry ingredients together in a separate bowl, then add to wet ingredients in the mixer.

Mix lightly until dough forms.  Make one inch balls.  Place evenly on cookie sheets lined with parchment paper.  Using thumb, indent a hole in the middle then fill with apricot jam or your choice of other fruit jam.

If you like, sprinkle tops with chopped nuts as a variation.  Bake 8 to 10 minutes.  Do not allow the bottoms to brown.  Sprinkle with fructose while hot for added sweetness.

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Gluten-Free Sausage Stew That Satisfies

August 6th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

This nutritious, richly flavored stew with rice, peas and vegetables is easy to make and so tasty, it will be a favorite of the whole family.

Ingredients
  • 1 pound roll fresh sausage (found with the breakfast meats)
  • ½ onion, chopped
  • ½ pound dried green peas
  • 1 cup dry brown rice
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 fresh sage leaves, minced or ½ teaspoon dried sage

 

Equipment

Heavy, deep pot with lid.

Process

Remove plastic covering from sausage roll and discard. Add sausage to a heavy pot, breaking it up with a fork.  Fry over medium heat 5 minutes, stirring with the fork or spatula until lightly browned.  Add onions and cook until nicely browned, being careful not to burn them.  Good stew needs good browning for rich flavor.

Add peas, rice, water, bay leaf, carrots, celery, salt and pepper.  Bring to boil, stirring, then lower heat to simmer.  Cover and cook 45 minutes, or until peas are soft.  Adjust water to desired consistency. Serves 4.