Chicken and Ginger Meatballs

I love meatballs — there’s something, well, fun about round food. And meatballs are easy to make, even when you’re gluten free. I made these meatballs — with tasty ground chicken and a lot of ginger! — for a party at a friend’s house. There were actually three kinds of meatballs (I was feeling overachieve-y that day), but these were the hands-down favorite.

Since then, I’ve made them whenever the mood strikes (and whenever ground chicken is on sale). They’re delicious with chicken wraps or on top of rice noodles. I mix up a quick chile sauce with a bit of lime juice, chile paste, and fish sauce to pour over the noodles or as a dipping sauce. Of course, my gluten-free ponzu would work just as well!

Gluten-Free Ponzu

There is something absolutely refreshing about chilled soba noodles with a few crisp, cool vegetable piled high, served with a tangy dipping sauce called ponzu. Gluten-free ponzu can be purchased, no doubt about it. But it’s a bit pricy. As with many sauces, I find the effort involved with making my own to be so minimal that it’s worth the time. Plus, this recipe uses many of the ingredients I keep on hand for other dishes, so no special purchases are required.

For general cooking like this, I purchase restaurant-sized containers of gluten-free soy sauce from Amazon. I also purchase fancier GF soy sauces for those dishes where the flavor of the soy sauce needs to shine — in those instances, a little goes a long way, making it easier to justify a higher price point. Bonito flakes can be bought online or at Asian grocery stores (some major chain stores and Whole Foods also stock them).

Gluten-Free Soy Sauce Eggs

Our household is eating more eggs than ever, and I’m including them in my lunch bag in different ways (hello, frittatas!). Lately, though, I’ve been adding soy sauce eggs into the mix because they’re the perfect mid-afternoon snack.

What are soy sauce eggs? Quite simply, they are hard- or soft-boiled eggs that have been peeled and marinated in a soy sauce solution. The marinade penetrates the egg white and adds lots of flavor.

I make them in batches of six, though I think I’m going to need to up my game and starting making them by the dozen since the husband is also consuming them. He likes having a low calorie, low carb option at the ready.

These eggs are, of course, delicious on their own. I also use them when making my versions of bibimbap or ramen. Add them as a topping to stir fries or fried rice. Or anything. Seriously. Anything.

Condiments Beyond Mustard

Last week, I confessed my love for mustard. But you know the old saying: woman cannot live on mustard alone. Thankfully, there are many other condiments — gluten-free condiments! — that are ready, willing, and able to serve as you prepare delicious meals.

Because my weeknight dinners are always quick meals, a stash of condiments helps me add flavor, create sauces, and fix mistakes quickly. Even if dinner is just a plain chicken breast or piece of fish, the right condiment can turn ordinary meals into something delicious in mere moments. Continue reading “Condiments Beyond Mustard”

Variations on Gluten-Free Fried Rice

In my city, the only restaurant that offers gluten-free fried rice is P.F. Chang’s, and I order it every time I eat there. Unfortunately, I cannot always count on this when the craving hits, and, you know, making fried rice is the work of minutes if you have cold, leftover rice in your fridge.

And that is the key: cold, leftover rice, or “overnight rice”, a description I read that charms me to this day. Warm rice is too wet to fry up properly. Leftover rice, after a night or so in the refrigerator, is drier. It hits the wok with a sizzle and fries perfectly. Continue reading “Variations on Gluten-Free Fried Rice”

Missing Soy Sauce? Try This Instead

Between you, me, and the wall, I was in the “ain’t never gonna buy or try something call fish sauce” for many years. Let’s face it: the name doesn’t sound appealing. And, well, you know, fish sauce. I was pretty sure I’d hate it.

I didn’t. It was love at first bit. It became an addiction. The kind of addiction that had me making gratuitous fried rice and dipping sauces just so I could get my fish sauce fix (hello spring rolls!). I started sneaking the stuff into dishes where no fish sauce had been contemplated before (when I added it to my caramelized onion dip, I got raves). Continue reading “Missing Soy Sauce? Try This Instead”

Beef with Broccoli

If there’s one thing I miss about my pre-gluten-free days, it’s going out for Chinese food. Sure, even then, I could make it for myself, but there’s something about the way restaurants prepare the food that had me going back, time and again.

Yeah, that’s generally a solid clue what I ordered wasn’t the most healthy choice on the menu. Except when I ordered beef with broccoli. Done right, it’s a fairly healthy dish. And, it turns out, it’s so easy to make at home.

Which is perfect for those times when I want to treat myself with my favorite food!

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