Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Breakfast Foods and Nutrition Bars

I miss big fluffy gluten loaded pancakes. If the pancake was good, I did not like syrup on it. If it was so-so, I covered it with either blueberry or cinnamon syrup.
Once I was visiting one of my Sisters in Little Rock (AR) and wanted to go out for breakfast. She went work, so Brother-in-law George said “Let’s go to Perkins”.

I had never ordered from the senior’s menu. So I said to George that we should order from the menu to see how much food we get.

We were really surprised, when the waitress kept asking if we wanted more orange juice or pancakes. I don’t think that is what is normally done, but she was definitely working for a big tip. She definitely got one. It was more than what we paid for breakfast!

There are some advantages to being in the ‘Senior Citizen’ category; discounts!! I can’t take advantage of restaurant Senior Citizen discounts now, because most of the restaurants still offering them are not Gluten-free.

One of the ‘senior retired’ surprises this year was when I received my Auto Insurance renewal bill. It had dropped about 31%.

But on the downside of health insurance, my former employer (who promised fee free insurance for life), reneged on the promise about 6 years ago and has been steadily increasing premiums each year. It was stated in the annual stockholders proxy document that the money was needed to retain good board members.  Maybe that is why the former CEO is spending time in prison.

The increase over last year's premium is approximately 40%. I now pay $5520.00 in health insurance premiums per year. The co-pays have also increased. The primary physician (non specialist) is $25. Any other doctor, physical therapist, ophthalmologist, lab tests at hospital or other facility other than doctor’s office at the same appointment is $40.00. Once, I was in for multiple tests, was told I was finished. Later I received a call saying that I had not finished all testing to come back. I was charged an additional $40.00 for that error made by the testing facility. 

When the financial woes get you down, cook something!

It is a lot easier to just make mixes suitable for different things that use flour. I have several mixes that I use frequently. A self-rising gluten free mix that I use is shown below. I see a lot of recipes, so I can’t remember if I borrowed it or I combined it. I rarely make any recipe the same more than two times. I am always tweaking them.

Self-Rising Flour Blend
Use this blend for muffins, scones, cakes, cupcakes or any recipe that uses baking powder for leavening.
1 1/4 cup sorghum flour
1 1/4 cups white rice flour
1/2 cup tapioca starch
2 tsp xanthan or guar gum
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Combine all ingredients into a bag or lidded container and shake to mix thoroughly.
Store in a cool dry place and label as shown
Yield: 3 cups

Since I was making a new mix and had some that would fit right in with this one, I used some of it.
Buckwheat Pancake and Waffle Mix
2/3 cup Self-Rising Flour Blend
2 1/3 cups buckwheat flour
2/3 cup Maseca (Corn Flour - Masa)
1/3 cup cornmeal
4 TBS sugar
1 TBS baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp TBS powdered milk
2 tsp egg replacer
Mix all ingredients in a lidded container and shake to mix thoroughly
Yield: approx. 4 cups of mix, 12 waffles

Pancakes  or waffles
For each cup of mix add:
2 TBS oil
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup dried or canned (drained) blueberries, optional
Additional water by the tablespoon

If more water is needed, add by tablespoon as needed
My camera quit for about a week, so I do not have many pictures


Each cup makes approximately 3 waffles.
If the batter thickens too much, add a tablespoon of water at a time to get to the desired consistency.

Anyone who has not been gluten-free for a long time will remember all of the junk food that they liked. I miss the Kashi and Slimfast bars, which has at some nutrition in them. I started buying Soy Joy bars and have acquired a taste for them. They are not the best bar around. Most of the bars that are gluten free are expensive. I have tried making ‘nutrition’ bars a couple of times. My latest one comes out pretty good.

Soy Nut and Fruit Nutrition Bar
The ingredients are listed according to processing method
Food Processor
3/4 cup Soybean flour
1 cup dried unsweetened desiccated coconut reduced fat
1/2 cup Dried Apples
1 1/4 cup Almonds, Whole Natural
3/4 cup Dried Mango
1/2 cup Dried Apples
3/4 cup dried pineapple
Mixing Bowl
1/2 cup milled flax
1 Tbs nutritional yeast flakes
1/2 tsp unflavored gelatin
1 tbs arrowroot starch
1/4 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
1 pinch salt, (optional)
2 Tbs honey
2 Tbs Coconut Oil, melted
1/2 cup Vanilla or plain Silk Soy Milk

Preheat oven to 325 F.
Cover a heavy 10X13 baking pan with parchment paper. I use a heavy shiny pan.
Combine all Food Processor ingredients in a food processor and pulse until combined and chopped. Do not over grind; you do not want a gunky blob!

Mix all Mixing Bowl ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
Pour Food Processor Ingredients into mixing bowl and mix thoroughly. If any clumps, use a fork to break them up.
Combine all Liquid Ingredients in a small bowl or mixing cup, gradually add to mixing bowl. Stir and mix everything thoroughly. The mixture will be thick and damp, not watery.

Spread the mixture evenly over the parchment papered pan. Use fingers or spatula to press it down and shape the corners, so that the mixture does not overlap the parchment paper.

Bake for 20 minutes on middle rack of oven. Reduce oven to 250 F and continue baking for 10 minutes. Do not over brown. Let cool completely. Slide bars with paper to cutting board. Cut into bars.

I do not like sweet bars, so these are not too sweet.  If you want a sweet bar, add about 1/4 cup Turbinado sugar during the mixing bowl stage.

Yield: 30 - 2 inch bars
Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1/30 of a recipe.
Nutrition information calculated from recipe ingredients.
Amount per Serving
Calories 105.7
Total Fat 5.37g
Saturated Fat 1.22g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 19.15mg
Potassium 150.69mg
Total Carbohydrates 12.24g
Fiber 2.52g
Sugar 6.3g

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