Violets and Amaranth

Eating weeds and gaining grains: an adventure in eating

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Gluten-Free Easter Week

I know Easter was a couple of weeks back, but the food was so good I’m still thinking about it :-).  We ate well and there were several gluten-free gems hiding in the various celebration meals.  The best part was that the savory dishes were inherently gluten-free.

Coloring Easter Eggs

Maundy Thursday

We started the Holy Week celebrations with a simple dinner at church for Maundy Thursday.  Several of us were all given the same recipe to make and bring for dinner. Unfortunately I don’t have pictures, but I was amazed that while we all used the same recipe, no two pots of soup were alike.  I loved the recipe though because it is a corn chowder, but it didn’t call for a flour base.  It is a higher fat soup, but it was satisfying and delicious.  I did swap out the chicken from the original recipe I was given, but other than that, I didn’t need to make any substitutions.  I also changed it from a stove-top recipe to a slow cooker recipe, which made it easier to take to church hot.

Kelbasa and Corn Chowder Soup

  • 4tbsp butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 Anaheim chili pepper, seeded and chopped (or jalapeño)
  • 2 12oz bags frozen corn kernels
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 6 red potatoes cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp corn starch
  • 2-3 tsp kosher salt
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese
  • ½  package cream cheese
  • 5-10 drops Tabasco
  • 1 pound cooked kelbasa, cut into bite-sized pieces (I used Easter Kelbasa)

In a skillet over medium heat, melt butter.  Add onions, bell pepper, garlic, and peppers. Cook while stirring for about 5 minutes until softened.

Add 1 bag of corn, salt, pepper, cumin, and thyme, cook a few more minutes and then transfer to a slow cooker.  Add broth, stir and add potatoes.

With a blender, puree cream, cream cheese, remaining bag of corn, and cornstarch.  Pour puree into soup. Stir and add kelbasa and parmesan to the soup.  Season with Tabasco and additional salt and pepper if necessary.

Cook on low for 3 hours or until the potatoes cook through.


Then, of course, came the two main meals of Easter Sunday, the breakfast potluck at church, and our dinner at home.  For breakfast, we decided to bring blintzes.  I’d never made them before, but we saw the recipe as we flipped through The Gluten-Free Gourmet, and they just sounded good.  They were.  I was able to follow the directions and only needed to swap out eggs for flax seed.  The crepes came out tasting and feeling like they had egg in them.  I did find they only cooked properly in my teflon coated electric skillet.  They stuck too much in the cast iron skillet.   We made a raspberry sauce to go on top.  The Geographer loved them, and they didn’t last very long in the buffet line either.

Egg-like crepes

Crepes filled with ricotta and cream cheese

Gratin and Ham

This year, instead of traveling for Easter Dinner, we stayed home, just the three of us.  I made a ham with a pineapple glaze baked on top and the Potato, Leek, and Smoked Gouda Gratin recipe I found in the Plain Dealerjust the Wednesday before (Follow the link and scroll down-the recipe is towards the bottom of the page).   Instead of the Idaho potatoes the recipe called for, I used purple potatoes.  I also

added in about a pound of chopped brussels sprouts.  I love the way the purple of the potatoes and green of the brussels sprouts go together.  I thought it was an appropriately colored dish for Easter.  Purple potatoes are a Peruvian heirloom variety that is very high in antioxidants

Spring Colors

The finished product

Ginger “Pudding”

We ended the meal with a ginger “pudding” from a recipe I found in Extending the Table.  It was good.  I’d never made a cake using this method before, so I’m not sure if it came out right or not.  Some parts were almost like a jelly, and others were  a bit dry.  The recipe said to drop the cake batter into the ginger syrup, it did not say to mix it.  I think I would make it again though.

Raw Ginger Pudding

Ginger Pudding

All in all, a yummy few days.  I hope that those of you who celebrate Easter had a blessed celebration as well.

(*For some reason, this post won’t save my formatting that allows the text and pictures to look reasonable with each other.  It insists on lumping it all together like you see here.  Sorry for the messed up aesthetics!)