Even if you’re on on a gluten free diet, you still love Chinese dumplings…right?
These days such dainty treats are easily found not only in local Chinese grocery stores, but also in regular supermarkets as well as in many wholesale distributors.
But with a gluten allergy or celiac disease there is no way to enjoy store-bought dumplings, which are all made with wheat flour.
A dough that can be used to make delicious gluten free dumplings is based on tapioca starch and rice flour. Without gluten, however, this dough is quite fragile, especially when rolled out. Make sure to add extra flour to your cutting board and rolling pin before rolling out the wrappers.
If you find the wrapper breaking apart when you roll it out, you can simply gather up the dough and roll it out again. Alternatively, a well-oiled tortilla press produces a great end result. In any event, don’t stress out about the appearance of the dumplings; they’ll cook up great, have nice chewy texture, and taste delicious.
These dumplings can be frozen so make a large batch. Freeze them individually so they can be pulled them out whenever you need a few gluten free Chinese dumplings. This gluten free dumplings recipe will definitely produce high levels of satisfaction for anyone craving Chinese dumplings.
1 cup tapioca starch
1 cup fine rice flour
1 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
2 tablespoons light olive oil
12-14 tablespoons cold water
glutinous or sweet rice flour
Whisk together tapioca starch, rice flour and xanthan gum in a bowl. Add oil and 12 tablespoons of water. Mix well, adding a little bit of water at a time if necessary to form a firm, but not dry, dough. Cover bowl with plastic wrap while preparing dumpling filling. The dumpling dough can be left for several hours as long as you cover it with plastic wrap to avoid drying out.
1 cup tapioca starch
1 cup millet flour*
1 cup glutinous (sweet) rice flour
2 1/2 teaspoons xantham gum
1 cup just-boiled water plus 1 to 2 tablespoons cold water
(work in the just-boiled water to create a crumbly moist mixture. Then switch to mixing and kneading by hand to work in the extra 1 to 2 tablespoons of cold water. Let dough rest in the plastic bag for 10 minutes.)
When ready to make the dumpling wrappers, sprinkle a cutting board or pastry sheet with glutinous rice flour. Form dough into a long log. Cut dough into 24 even pieces.
Flatten each piece into a small round on floured cutting board. Using a rolling pin, roll each round into a 2 1/2″- 3″ circle, flipping the dough over, and turning the circle as you roll it out.
The dough is fragile, so roll it out carefully, and be sure to keep both sides floured so it doesn’t stick to the rolling pin or cutting board. As mentioned above, you can use a oiled tortilla press to roll out a perfect round.
Cover rolled dumpling wrappers with plastic wrap until all the wrappers are made. If you need to leave the wrappers to rest for a while, cover with a very slightly damp paper towel and then a piece of plastic wrap.
To complete the dumpling:
Put a spoonful of your favorite dumpling filling in the middle of the wrapper, being careful not to overstuff.
Form pleated dumpling by bringing wrapper ends together over center of filling and pinch. Pinch center of dumpling wrapper together well. Pinch corners of the wrapper together on one end. Pinch one corner of dumpling dough, then carefully pinch wrapper together to enclose filling. Continue pinching both sides of dough together to enclose the dumpling filling. Repeat on other side of wrapper. Pinch dough gently around filling on both sides to form a flat bottomed dumpling.
Alternatively, don’t even try to figure this out, just watch this:
Fry Dumplings with 1 tablespoon oil in a frying pan. Place dumplings in pan and fry until bottom of dumplings are lightly browned. Pour in 3/8 cup water and cover pan. Cook on medium, covered, until water is evaporated, about 6-8 minutes. Watch carefully as oil may sputter. After water is evaporated, continue to cook for a few minutes until bottom of dumplings are golden brown and crunchy.
Eat immediately, or let cool, and freeze. To freeze, line a plate with plastic wrap. Gently place cooked dumplings on plate. Cover dumplings with plastic wrap and place in freezer. After dumplings are frozen, store them in a container or Ziploc bag, and keep in the freezer.
To reheat, steam until hot. Enjoy!
Visited a friend a few days ago who bestowed upon me her delectable annual Christmas offering of homemade Greek-style Baklava. I love this stuff. Now I’m thinking… I want to concoct a gluten free version of this. Yes, a gluten free diet doesn’t have to be boring, though one should be aware of the basic gluten free FAQs.
What is gluten free baklava?
It’s right here, and it’s a pretty damned good gluten free dessert. Admittedly, my gluten free dough will never be as flaky as her delicate phyllo-based creation, but it’s a noble attempt and yields a delicious product nonetheless. Practice, practice, practice!
First, make up a batch of gluten free pastry:
1 cup rice flour
1 tablespoon white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 cup vegetable shortening
3 tablespoons cold water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 Cup of Pistachio Nuts Chopped
1 Cut of Almond Nuts Chopped
1 t Cinnamon for Nut Mix
1/4 Cup of Caster Sugar for Nut Mix
1/4 Cup of Brown Sugar for Nut Mix
1 Cup Caster Sugar for Syrup
1 Cup Brown Sugar for Syrup
1/2 Cup Honey for Syrup
1/2 Cup Maple Syrup for Syrup
1-2 Lemons Juiced for Syrup (add according to taste)
Make the dough by combining and kneading pastry ingredients together until stiff but not sticky.
Let dough rest for two hours, covered in saran wrap.
Make the syrup first so it has time to cool while the Baklava is being made. Pour honey, maple syrup, and 1/2 cup of water into a pan on medium heat. Once boiling, add 1 cup of caster sugar, 1 cup of brown sugar and the juice of 1-2 lemons depending on taste, stir until dissolved. Let the syrup thicken, remove from heat and leave to cool for 40 mins. After cooling the syrup should be golden brown.
Preheat the oven to 360 F. If your oven is fan forced, you can reduce cooking temperature to 320 degrees F.
Put both almond and pistachio chopped nuts in a medium bowl, and mix with 1/4 cup of caster sugar, 1/4 cup of brown sugar and 1 tsp of cinnamon. Add 2-3 drops of water for slight moisture. Stir until evenly mixed.
Divide dough into 16 sections, cover what is not being worked. Lay down some baking paper for rolling out the pastry. Roll dough into sheets that are paper-thin or as thin as you can get it until you start to see little tears develop if you pick it up. The pastry sheets should look almost a little see-through once rolled out. The sheets should cover roughly the base of the 9 x 13 baking dish. Pre-grease the dish and place 2 sheets of dough in the dish for the base of the baklava brushing a complete coat of butter on each layer when placing in the dish. Here’s a video that might help with this sometimes tricky precess:
Here’s another video, though not using gluten free pastry sheets, focuses on some additionally interesting and helpful techniques for making your baklava.
After creating the base, you can sprinkle on the nut mix. Use approximately half of your nut mix (and no more) to completely cover the base of your baklava.
Continue placing 1 layer of pastry down at a time and with each layer, brush an even coat of oil on top. Sprinkle a very light layer of nut mix on each layer that is just enough to cover the sheet of pastry before proceeding to place another layer down.
Depending on the amount of nut mix left, make sure you have 2-3 sheets of pastry to create a crust. The last layers need not have any nut mix between them, but just continue to coat each layer in oil, including the final surface layer.
Once all the sheets and nut mix are finished, you can proceed to cut your uncooked Baklava into diamond shapes with a sharp knife. Place the dish in the oven and bake for approximately 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 5 mins. Pour the cooled syrup evenly over the Baklava until completely covered. There should only be a thin layer of syrup at the base of the Baklava, so if you’ve made too much syrup, carefully pour some of the excess back into the saucepan.
Note: If you don’t have maple syrup, just substitute in more honey. If you aren’t a fan of lemon try other citrus, like mandarin, lime, or orange.
Eat and enjoy your delicious gluten free baklava.
Convincing a child to eat much of anything is a chore, so how do you handle a child that has been diagnosed with a gluten intolerance or celiac disease? It isn’t easy, but there are ways to convince them that the benefits of a gluten free diet is not only best for their health but an enjoyable way to eat. Here is some inspiration for developing gluten free recipes for kids.
Always Be Educating
Don’t simply tell your child “you can’t have gluten”. Many adults have a hard time understanding gluten and what foods it is in, so it’s unrealistic to expect a child to do any better.
Teach children the basic facts about the gluten-containing foods they must not eat and how to avoid them by modeling a gluten free diet plan. Explain to them the reason why they need to be careful and what exactly will happen to them when they eat gluten containing foods. Consequences speak volumes for children. Identify and offer gluten free food alternatives. Reward children for appropriate eating behavior. Spend time showing your child how gluten appears on labels and how to avoid it.
Create a notebook that your child can carry with them containing a list of foods they cannot have and a list of foods they can have. This will help when they go to a friend’s house or are in school where boundaries are often broken without your knowledge.
Finding Gluten Free Foods They Like
The real issue with a gluten free diet for children is finding foods the child will like. Especially if they were previously allowed to eat things like cake and bread, changing to gluten free products can be very hard.
It’s important to find and develop gluten free menu variations on kid favorites like macaroni and cheese, pizza, spaghetti, cookies and other sweets. Almost anything you can think of that contains gluten can be made gluten free in some form or another. Don’t allow yourself to think that they need to eat different foods – just different ingredients. At the same time, don’t pour money into processed gluten free foods which can be prohibitively expensive.
Develop habit of always having gluten free products as snacks available wherever kids go: rice crackers, fruit or veggies, homemade snacks and water. It doesn’t matter where they’re going, get them used to carrying a lunch bag.
Make and have specialty, holiday, or go-to gluten free treats that kids can eat or drink when out with family or friends such as gluten free cakes, pies or other gluten free desserts. Make sure these can freeze well so all you need to do is thaw and it’s ready to use or bring anywhere.
Develop good basic recipes for staples like gluten free bread, gluten free pizza, gluten free tortillas and wraps, gluten free cake, gluten free candy and other gluten free desserts. Consider buying a quality mixer, like a KitchenAid, bread making machine and other specialty cooking paraphernalia such as tortilla press, pizza stone, etc. Consequently, you will be able to derive the benefits of a gluten free diet and make much healthier, whole foods at home. You can never have too many recipes.
Develop gluten free plan for road trips, visiting, traveling or other event-related scenarios: Include bringing along your own gluten free products such as almond milk, bread, crackers, and snacks, as well as identifying gluten free friendly restaurants or restaurants that provide gluten free foods list.
Communicating with Other Adults
Once your child is out of sight, it’s very likely they will be presented with gluten-containing foods. While your efforts to educate them on the risks of eating gluten will certainly help, you must also talk to the adults they are with. Teachers, parents of their friends and family members must all understand the extreme health risk of eating gluten. Make sure they understand the severity (comparisons to diabetes or peanut allergies often get the point across) and ensure your child always has gluten free snacks on hand so they don’t get left out of class activities.
With the right level of communication and preparation, you can ensure your child is never left out because of their gluten allergy or gluten intolerance – life can be normal even if it is a little more complicated.
Finding gluten free recipes for kids with gluten allergy is not as difficult as most people think provided you adopt a structured approach to a gluten free diet plan. So, for instance, instead of fretting over the food your child can’t eat, focus on and reward kids for all of the food they can eat. Rather than worrying about how to manage these special restrictions, try focusing on and enjoying how much healthier your children will be.
For more information on gluten free, as well as on delicious gluten free food alternatives, click below:
Gluten sensitivity and celiac disease
Health benefits of a gluten-free diet
Problems associated with gluten-filled processed foods
Tempting guilt-free desserts
Delicious whole grain bread mixes,
Gluten-free bread mixes
Fluffy gluten-free pancake mixes
Also check out this informative and helpful video:
I love pizza; can’t do without it. So when I’m asked what is gluten free pizza, I just laugh and tell people that pizza can easily be a gluten free food.
Some people think that just because gluten can’t be a part of your life, it means you have to live without some basic food choices, including pizza, or even desserts, in this case, gluten free desserts. Well, check out these little beauties that follow: a couple of delicious gluten free recipes on the pizza theme to include as part of your gluten free diet. A great treat, particularly if you’re looking for recipes that gluten free kids will love.
(1) The first has a gluten free flour made from rice, and is a yeast-raised gluten free pizza crust that can take on any topping combo without cracking or drying out. Really terrific and the method is simple: Dry ingredients are mixed with the wet, then rolled out, and left to rise until puffy and ready to bake. To ensure a crisp, sturdy crust, bake the dough until lightly golden before adding toppings, then finish baking. This two-part sequence makes a crust that doesn’t collapse under the weight of the toppings.
While this yeast-raised pizza crust stands up to generous amounts and selections of toppings, crisping up nicely in the oven, it won’t have all that tenderness and chew that we like in a pizza crust. But as one of a number of gluten free dinner recipes, it’s a winner.
2 cups of white rice flour
3/4 cup tapioca starch
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast
1/2 cup very warm water (120º to 130ºF)
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing
Whisk together dry ingredients in large bowl.
Mix together the wet ingredients (small bowl) with a fork or small whisk until combined. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry. Using a wooden spoon, stir to combine until a dough forms. The dough will be on the dry side. This is normal.
Generously sprinkle counter with white rice flour. Turn the dough out onto the counter. Knead the dough until it is smooth. If, after kneading for a minute, the dough is still dry and doesn’t hold together, add a tablespoon more water.
On a piece of parchment paper, roll the dough out into a 14″ circle. Dust the dough generously with white rice flour. Set dough onto a rimmed baking sheet by grabbing the corners of one of the sides of the parchment paper and quickly sliding the crust into the pan.
Lightly brush olive oil over the top of the crust with a pastry brush. Cover the dough completely with plastic wrap. Allow to rise at room temperature for 45 minutes, or until dough is light and slightly puffy.
Bake for 15-18 min at 425 or under golden, then remove from oven to top and return to the oven for 5 min (or until cheese is melted).
(2) With a gluten free crust, one of the best gluten free, dairy-free pizza crusts I’ve tasted is made with Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose Gluten-Free Baking Flour. This product brings superior flavor and a delicious pizza crust texture. Nicely golden crisp at the edge, with a tender, but chewy, flexible middle. Not too thick; not too thin… Easy to hold a slice in your hand and bite.
The easy recipe involves only a handful of ingredients and four steps:
• 2 tsp active dry yeast
• 1 tsp Sugar
• 3/4 cup Warm Water
• 1 Egg
• 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
• 1-1/2 Cups of Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose Gluten-Free Baking Flour (contains garbanzo flour, potato starch, tapioca flour, sorghum flour, and fava flour).
• 2 tsp Xanthan Gum
• 1/2 tsp sea salt
Combine yeast, sugar and water in a large bowl and let stand about 5 minutes.
Combine dry ingredients in separate bowl. Add egg and oil to wet ingredients, then add dry ingredients. Mix with a hand mixer for a minute, adding a teaspoon of water if dough moves up beaters.
Scoop onto greased pizza sheet. Wet your hands with water and spread dough over sheet and smooth. For a thicker crust, let rise for 10 – 15 minutes. Otherwise, continue with the baking directions below.
Top with favorite sauce, choice of fresh vegetables, herbs and other toppings. Bake at 425°F for 15-20 minutes.
Delicious example shown here uses fresh baby spinach leaves and basil, roasted eggplant slices, sliced fresh tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, Italian herbs (dried oregano, marjoram, parsley, rosemary, thyme) and drizzle of extra virgin olive oil all over the top.
A Variation on Gluten Free Flour
For a change, you may want to try a variation of a gluten free flour blend as a delicious alternative for your gluten free pizza crust.
3/4 cup (88g) sorghum flour
2/3 cup (90g) cornstarch
1/4 cup (37g) potato starch
1 tbsp + 1 tsp (14g) potato flour
1 tsp (3g) xanthan gum
Enjoy gluten free pizza, and stay informed. Here’s a video to help: