Gluten-Free Tomato Soup

Tomato SoupIt is starting to look like I will be making a lot of soups over the next few months. Homemade Gluten-Free Tomato Soup is perhaps one of my favorites because it reminds me of my school years. Of course during the days we were in class we always had enough to eat. In fact we were required to eat some of everything we cooked. The days when there were no classes was the challenge. Money was in short supply and for meals eaten at home, we always looked for the most inexpensive but filling foods available. One meal that was very popular was tomato soup with grilled cheese sandwiches. Today I usually forgo the grilled cheese and replace it with some rye bread or a Sourdough baguette. I’m trying to cut back on the cheese a little and dunking a piece of sourdough into tomato soup is just as filling. The hardest part is finding a gluten free sourdough baguette. I can find the gluten free baguettes at my local grocery store once in a while but they are so expensive that it is a special treat. I do have a good recipe for making sourdough bread and I will share it with you as soon as I start baking again.

Gluten-Free Tomato Soup
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: International
  • 2 cups of gluten-free chicken stock
  • 3-4 large tomatoes (equaling 3 cups) of peeled, seeded and diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • ½ tsp. of oregano
  • ⅛ tsp. of marjoram
  • ¼ cup of fresh basil, chopped
  • Sea Salt and freshly ground pepper
  1. In a large pot, add the tomatoes, garlic cloves, onion, oregano, marjoram, and fresh basil. Next, add the gluten-free chicken stock
  2. Mix everything together.
  3. Bring the items to a boil in the pot
  4. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes
  5. Remove from the heat and.allow the soup to cool for a few minutes.
  6. Once it has cooled some, blend the mixture a little at a time in a food blender,
  7. When it is all blended return it to the pot, and warm it up before serving.


Often on a chilly day I will sip this soup from a cup while working on the computer, in place of hot coffee.

One of the side effects of living a gluten free lifestyle is that you do a lot of your own cooking from scratch. This is really a much healthier way to eat and once you get into the practice of cooking your meals it actually becomes very gratifying.

Chefs Note: If you wish to have the soup a little creamy you can add a cup of soy milk or rice milk when you reheat the soup. I do this with Gluten-Free Tomato Soup and some of  the other soups I will be sharing with you this winter. Of course heavy cream is also an option as it is gluten free but it also will pack on the calories if that is a concern of yours.

Today is Meatless Monday so how about a nice bowl of homemade Gluten-Free Tomato soup for lunch.


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Gluten Free Halloween Candy

Gluten Free CandyYe Gads it’s almost the end of October and Halloween is upon us. So the big question might be, What are my choices for Gluten Free Halloween Candy? Well they are quit good. Actually they are better than I believed at first. This list is long so I am going to give you a web sight to visit and get all the information needed.

Please keep in mind that the candies listed are considered to be gluten-free by their United States manufacturers as of 2013 and if it does not state “gluten Free’ on the package, read the ingredients list carefully. OK, visit;

This will take you to information on products by Hershey, Necco, Tootsie Roll, Just Born, Gluten Free Halloween CandySmarties, Nestle, Jelly Belly, Surf sweets, Justin all Natural and Wrigley.

So with a little research You can have your Halloween candy without the scary part, unless of course you get all dressed up and go knocking on doors. That’s the spooky stuff.

Relax and have fun.  Celebrate the month with all the things that make Halloween fun besides just the candy – crafts, pumpkin picking, pumpkin carving, and enjoying the falling leaves.  If you have children that must remain gluten free then it might be a great idea to have a party at your house so you can control the Gluten Free Halloween Candy they eat. If they must go trick-or-treating, have a lot of gluten candy at home and when you get back, go thru their candy bag and trade them 2 gluten free candies for each candy you must take away. They will love the deal and you will remain in control.  When your in control it can be great fun.

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Friends I’ve Met Online Pt.2

FriendsToday I would like to introduce you to another of the friends I have met online. We will call this Friends I’ve met Online Pt.2 because a couple of weeks ago I wrote the first article about another of my friends. When you spend as much time writing at your computer and you have an active blog it is not long before you find people that spark you interest in what they write and you begin to follow them on a regular basis. Over time you develop a friendship with them as you exchange ideas and articles. This is about one of those people.

It might be a surprise to find out that even Chefs have other chefs that they enjoy and learn from. After all they can teach us only so much in school before we go out into the world to ply our trade. We must continue to learn to become ever better in our profession.

The first great chef to grab my attention when I was just starting out was James Beard. Known as the “Dean of American cookery” he helped bring American cooking to the forefront and let the rest of the world know that we have a national cuisine.

Then there was Justin Wilson, a showman in the kitchen who was so much fun to listen to and watch during his weekly television show. His story telling while cooking his brand of Cajun cuisine put life into kitchen life.

There are others, such as Bobby Flay and Jamie Oliver that I enjoy watching do their magic in the kitchen and then there  is the Chef that I want to introduce you to today.

Her name is: Anita-Clare Field and her blog is Lover of Creating Flavours which English Marmitekind of describes her and yet there is so much more that she shares with us. She introduces us to many different people such as her fish Monger and her Cheese Monger, she takes us to visit people that produce cheese, and hogs and chefs that she admires. She also has a thing about Marmite, as I believe everyone in England has. I really don’t know why but then it has been years since I visited England and tasted it so I am  not completely sure of the flavor. I did really learn to enjoy orange marmalade on scones during my visits. Perhaps I didn’t spend enough time with marmite to learn to enjoy it as much as Anita-Clare Field does.

She shared with us her wedding to Caro Field and all the behind the scenes preparation that went into making sure that everything would be perfect on the wedding day.

In this past few months she has shared in the development of her and Caro’s latest adventure “La Petite Bouchee” and some of the meals that they prepare to serve in the limited space they have to work in. It really is worth a visit to her website to see this little marvel of Ingenuity.

What really stands out for me as a Chef is the background that Anita-Clare Field shares with her readers with every recipe that she shares with us. Before you get the recipe for Carpaccio of Geoduck With Horseradish Cream And Lime, you will get a lesson on just what Geoduck is, where it hails from and how to prepare it. Likewise with the recipe for African Peanut Stew you will learn all about the Selim Pepper including where it is grown and how it is used. All of her recipes include a little history about one or more of the ingredients that are being used. That makes serving the dish so much more exciting. You can share with your guests great food and at the same time impress them by sharing your new found knowledge about what they are enjoying. She brings to her blog recipes from around the world, and in every case you will also get this background information that will bring the recipe to life.

So treat yourself and take a few minutes and visit my friend Anita-Clare Field at Http:// If you enjoy knowing about food and it’s history as well as learning a few new recipes, you will be glad you did.



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Winter Dinners In A Hurry

Clean Eating is Healthy EatingIf preparing Winter Dinners In A Hurry sounds good to you then here are a couple of recipes that just might fit your needs. On the cold days ahead things can get ahead of us and it is almost dinner time before we are ready. Wintertime means comfort foods. But many of those comfort foods can be time-consuming. Sometimes you really just need something you can whip up real quick, but that’s hearty and warming. Here are some winter dinner ideas that you can do on the fly. They’ll taste great and won’t take you long to cook.

Creamy Chicken Stew
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
  • ¾ lb small red potatoes (about 8), quartered
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 can condensed milk
  • ¼ cup gluten free Italian salad dressing
  • 2 cups frozen stew vegetables
  • ½ cup sour cream
  1. Place potatoes and water in a microwave safe dish and cover. Microwave on high 7 minutes or until fork tender. Meanwhile, heat oil in large saucepan on medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 7 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add potatoes, condensed milk, dressing and vegetables to saucepan. Bring to boil; cover. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer 3 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are heated through.
  3. Stir in sour cream; cook 1 minute or until heated through, stirring occasionally.


Serve the chicken stew with a small salad and you have a nice dinner in only a matter of minutes. Hopefully those vegetables were harvested from your garden. If not, look for organicly grown vegetables whenever possible.


30 Minute Chili
Recipe type: Lunch/Dinner
Cuisine: American
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 ½ pounds ground beef or turkey
  • Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • ½ bottle (6 ounce) of beer
  • 1 14 ounces beef broth
  • 1 can (6 ounce) tomato paste
  • 1 ½ tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 2 oz gluten free smoky barbecue sauce
  • 3 tbsp hot sauce
  • 6 oz shredded smoked cheddar cheese
  1. Heat oil in a deep pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; sauté 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add beef and brown for another 3-5 minutes. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Add beer and allow it to reduce by half.
  2. Stir in broth, paste, chili powder, cumin, barbecue sauce, and hot sauce. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer 10 minutes. Top with cheese. Great served with corn chips.


Hopefully you have made some homemade beef stock over the summer and have some stored in the freezer. I do not like to use the canned broth because of the excess salt.


Crispy Chicken Cutlets
Recipe type: Lunch/Dinner
Cuisine: American
  • 2 lbs chicken cutlets
  • Sea Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 3-4 tbsp gluten free flour
  • 1 cup gluten free Italian breadcrumbs
  • ⅓ – ½ cup grated Parmigiano cheese
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp poultry season
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 jar (3 ounces) pine nuts
  • 2 tbsp lemon zest
  • 2 farm fresh eggs, beaten
  • Olive oil
  1. Season chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. Place flour in a shallow dish and turn cutlets lightly in flour.
  2. Combine breadcrumbs, cheese, red pepper flakes, poultry seasoning, garlic, pine nuts, and lemon zest in a food processor and pulse to evenly mix. Transfer the mixture to a plate. Beat eggs in a separate shallow dish.
  3. Heat a thin layer of oil, just enough to coat the bottom of the pan, in a large skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Coat cutlets in eggs, then bread and place in hot oil. Cook cutlets in a single layer until breading is evenly browned and juices run clear, 3-4 minutes on each side. Remove to a plate.


You will notice that these recipes are written with a gluten free lifestyle in mind. I live a lifestyle that is gluten free by choice and not for medical reasons. I will explain a little more about that but first another recipe.


Vodka Cream Pasta
[b]Please Note: If you are on a Gluten Free Diet for any reason, be sure that the Vodka you use is not made from wheat.[/b]
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 1 cup gluten free vodka
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 12 ounces gluten free pasta
  • 20 leaves fresh basil, shredded or torn
  1. Boil water for your pasta.
  2. Heat a large skillet over moderate heat. Add oil, butter, garlic, and shallots. Gently sauté garlic and shallots for 3-5 minutes. Add vodka and stir. Reduce vodka by half, 2-3 minutes. Add chicken stock and tomatoes. Bring sauce to a bubble, then reduce heat to simmer. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. While sauce simmers, cook pasta in salted boiling water until al dente.
  4. Stir cream into vodka sauce. When sauce returns to a bubble, remove from heat. Drain pasta. Toss hot pasta with sauce and basil leaves.


There are several gluten free vodkas on the market but you must be aware of what you are buying. For example Blue Ice Vodka makes two different vodkas. The one in the blue bottle is a potato based vodka while the other one is a wheat based vodka. Another Vodka, Bombora Vodka is a grape based vodka and is gluten free. There are others, so do a little research and you will find one that fits your requirements.


Balsamic Pork Tenderloins
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
  • 2 pork tenderloins (2 ¼ pounds total)
  • Balsamic vinegar (about 3 tbsp)
  • Olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, cracked
  • 2 tbsp sea salt and fresh ground black peppercorns
  • 4 sprigs each rosemary and thyme, finely chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees F.
  2. Trim silver skin off tenderloins.
  3. Place tenderloins on a non-stick cookie sheet with a rim.
  4. Coat tenderloins in balsamic vinegar, rubbing into the meat.
  5. Drizzle with olive oil to coat.
  6. Cut small slits into meat and place chunks of cracked garlic in the meat.
  7. Combine salt and pepper with rosemary and thyme and rub on the meat. Roast in hot oven 20-25 minutes.
  8. Let meat rest, then slice and serve.

These are just a few quick and hearty meals for the winter.  I promise that I will add more as we move along into the winter months. Some of these will be from the collection of Mexican recipes I have from my life while living there.

Now I promised to tell you about why I chose a gluten free lifestyle when I did not need to according to any medical history or advice from any doctor I visit from time to time. As a Chef I have always had a battle with my weight. Way to much rich, fattening food at my fingertips in an environment where you do not set down to eat as you keep working.  At one time not to many years ago I reached 337 pounds and at six feet tall that was a big problem. I do believe I tried every diet out there from weight watchers (a very good food program I must add) to the Atkins diet which I would not recommend to any of my friends, to the South Beach diet which might work for some but not for me. For me it must be a complete lifestyle adjustment which is more than a diet.  What changed it for me? I read a book that made complete since to me. The concept is that we are Hunters or we are Farmers. Turns out that after taking the test in the book, I am a Hunter. Dr. Liponis  suggests that for hunters it is wise to cut way back on gluten, which I have done. I am happy with the success I am having with his advice which includes some other lifestyle changes hunters can make for better control of their body and mind.

You can probably find the book in your local book store. If you click on the picture above, it will take you to my affiliate sight. That means that while you will not pay more for the book, the book seller will send me a few cents somewhat like they would pay a store employee. I liked the book enough to buy a copy so I wanted to tell everyone about it.

We will be adding a lot of new gluten free recipes over the coming weeks so please check back often.

You should be able to find almost all of the above gluten free products at your local health food store and even perhaps at your local supermarket. However if you can not find something, take a look at Chef Williams Nutrition Store If it is something I use I like to offer it to others. I make a few cents on each sale which helps support my blog post,

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Quesadillas and Tacos

Gluten freeThis past week I shared a recipe about quesadillas and I was asked what exactly a quesadilla is. That was a very good question. When you make a lot of Mexican food like we do, it is easy to forget to explain what the difference is between Quesadillas and Tacos.

All of the following items have one thing in common, they all start with a tortilla. Sometimes it’s corn and sometimes flour but the tortilla is the container that will deliver the food. Often times these can be eaten directly from your hand, sometimes they will Continue reading

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Acorn Squash Quesadillas

QuesadillaAs many of you may know, I really enjoy Mexican food. I have many favorites and my wife and I are always looking for ways to use local foods in our Mexican recipes. Acorn Squash Quesadillas are an example of what you can make during the squash season for a great lunch. Perhaps a lite salad on the side and a refreshing beverage of your choice to round out the meal. In this recipe we are using a little jalapeno pepper but often, when it is my turn on the assembly, I will exchange that pepper with a chipotle pepper chopped very finely.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Acorn Squash Quesadillas
Recipe type: Lunch/Dinner
Cuisine: Mexican
  • 1 medium acorn squash
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 3 tablespoons diced onion
  • 1 jalapeno minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 poblano or pasilla chiles, roasted, peeled and cut into strips
  • Sea Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 10-inch flour tortillas (we use wheat tortillas for this )
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican cheese blend of your choice
  • Garnishes: Mexican crema or sour cream and salsa verde cruda

I am including a shot video to show you the easiest way to roast and clean Poblano peppers. If you don’t have a pan available, another method is to wrap them in a cloth towel and place the towel inside a plastic bag, close the bag and let them set for about 15 minutes. We often use a plastic bag that we got when shopping and a dish towel.  Then you would want to clean them over a piece of newpaper, because that black skin can be a bit of a mess, and it is easiest to just fold up the paper and throw it away.

If you need a recipe for Salsa Verde, you can find one take a look Here


For some exciting recipes check out Chef William’s Mexican cookbook at Mexican Fiesta Recipes

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Winter Squash are Here

squashThe twinkle is back in my wifes eyes as she views all the squash available at the local farmers markets. Winter Square are here and if there is anything she enjoys when mango’s are not available, it is winter squash. Years ago when we first started our life together I was not such a big fan of squash. In fact, I would cut an acorn squash in half, remove the seeds and replace them with a little butter and brown sugar, bake them in the oven and call it a day. That was the extent of my squash eating and even that was not so often. But things have changes since Noah and I got off the ark and with the discovery of my lovely wife came the discovery of how good great squash can taste. There are so many different types of squash and so many different ways to prepare them that it can become a challenge quest to see just how many ways to enjoy them over the winter.

It’s October as I write this and now is the time to buy your winter squash and store them away to enjoy at a late date. If you go into the grocery store after the first of the year expect to pay a higher price. In fact, the price can be a deal breaker. Guess where that squash comes from. The same farmers you are buying from except the big companies have stored it away because they can get more money by waiting to sell it until after the farmers markets have closed for the winter. You want to store your whole winter squash in a cool, dry dark place outside of refrigeration. They store best at between 50°F – 60°F. Of course, you can also clean them, peel them and freeze them in sealed plastic freezer bags if you like. I have found that what I freeze I just use in soups and stews.  And don’t forget to dry the seeds so that you can toast them latter, they make a great snack.

Some of the squash that are very popular in my kitchen are;

Butternut Squash. It has a pale yellow/pink skin but it is bright orange on the inside. It butternut squashis  a little on the sweet side. With it’s sweet nutty flavor it is a great roasting squash. They contain vitamins A and C as well as potassium and fiber. We dry the seeds and roast them at a later date.

Acorn Squash. This is without a doubt the most popular squash in our house. This one I will sometimes cut in half, add a little acorn squashbrown sugar and a tiny bit of butter to the inside after removing the seeds and bake in an oven until soft inside. It makes a great dessert. Choose ones with as much dull green rind as possible, once they start to turn orange on the outside the flesh is a little tougher

Spaghetti Squash A lot of people enjoy this squash because when you scrape the insides with a fork, you get strands much like the pasta it is names after. If you are  trying to cut back on using so much pasta or on a diet, this squash could very well be the answer. Personally I only use this squash five or six times a year. When I do use it, I make a nice mild sauce to go with it. You can use a pasta sauce but I enjoy a lighter sauce such as a mushroom sauce to add to the flavor without overpowering it.

Eabocha Squash This squash is very popular in our house because it has a nutty earthy flavor with just a little bit of sweetness.It is easy to mix up this squash with the butternut squash except on the Eabocha squash the bottom points out and on the butternut squash it points in and has a circular ridge.

Buttercup Squash Green in color with lighter green strips, the bright orange flesh is a bit dry after cooking and the result is that my wife adds some to a glass of milk or uses it in a smoothie. It is a very mild squash.

Carnival Squash: Not sure why my wife likes this one so much as it is pretty much a cross between an acorn squash and a sweet dumpling squash and has a mild flavor. Perhaps it is the color and the fact that any recipes we have that call for an acorn squash can be replaced with a carnival squash.

Sweet Dumpling Squash This cute little beauty taste a little like a sweet potato and you can eat it skin and all. It is popular in our house because we can count on one per person and cook them it a crock pot. I remove my serving when ready, smash it a little, top it with a little fresh butter and then, after finishing it, ask myself why I didn’t cook more while I was at it.

Delicata Squash Here again the flavor is somewhat like a sweet potato and that draws winter squashus to this squash. We have not had a lot of luck storing it so we enjoy it during the harvest and keep the other squash for when the weather gets a tad bit colder.

Blue Habbard Squash This is one tough squash to open. If you find it in a store the chances are it has already been cut into Hubbard Squashpieces. I have a sharp machete which works pretty well at getting to the inside. It has a sweet tasting orange flesh hidden on the inside. Because of their size, we only get one or two per year.

There are other winter squash available including pumpkins but the above squash about covers what we keep for as long as possible and enjoy weekly during the colder months.

Winter Squash are here and the local farmers markets are still open. They have a great selection of winter squash available. Now would be a good time to visit them and perhaps purchase a few extra to store for enjoying at a later date.

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Cauliflower Coconut Bisque

soupHere in Wisconsin, it is hanging between 40 degrees this morning and 48 degrees this afternoon with light rain falling for the past hour. It is time for some soup and I am going to go with items I have on hand. That means today it will be Cauliflower Coconut Bisque.

The wind has been blowing pretty heavy for the past week so there are leaves all over the lawns but there is still plenty to enjoy as they change to the colors of fall. I wonder it they named it fall because the leaves fall, the temperature falls, we get more rain fall and it won’t be long before the snow starts to fall.

I still have more grilling to do but I can do that in any weather so we’re good there. In fact, chicken marinated with sofritoif my favorite team is in the superbowl, you will find me outside before the game, grilling up some steaks and other goodies to enjoy, regardless of the weather……But this afternoon, it is a soup day and I have chosen a bisque because I can sip it from a cup as I do other things. A Bisque is a specific type of preparation involving a puree. We will be pureeing the onions and cauliflower making a creamy rich soup. Actually I am taking license here by calling it a bisque because what makes a true bisque is in the procedure and part of that is using rice or a crust of bread as the binder. Lets call it a bisque anyway and get on with it o.k.?

Cauliflower Coconut Bisque
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: International
Serves: 2 to 4
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small sweet onion, diced
  • 1 medium head cauliflower, chopped
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • ½ to 1 tsp salt
  1. Put the olive oil, onion, and cauliflower in a soup pot over medium heat and cook until onion softens, then pour in the broth, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 20 minutes or until cauliflower is very tender.
  2. Remove pot from heat and let cool slightly.
  3. When cooled, put mixture in a blender and puree until smooth, returning to a soup pot as you go.
  4. When all the cauliflower is blended and in the pot, stir in the coconut milk, coriander, and salt, stirring to combine.
  5. Turn heat to low under the pot and gently reheat, then taste and add more seasonings as needed.


You can serve this soup warm. I like it a little on the hot side because as I said, I like to sip it from a cup and return for more now and then through out the afternoon. If it is really chilly outside I will even add a couple of drops of hot sauce to the finished bisque. that’s a weakness of might…I like a lot of heat as in peppers in my food.
I also make soups in small batches when it is just my wife and myself because it takes almost no time to make more and I want no left overs for the next day. So if the weather has started to change where you live and it is getting chilly, it’s time to get out the soup pot and start enjoying some bone warming soups.

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Friends I’ve met Online

FriendsI was going to call this article “Friends I have Never Met” but that would not be exactly true. Friends I’ve met Online would be a better title. I have taking the Ultimate Blog Challenge for the past three years or so it seems. During that time I have gotten to know a few of the people that blog here almost daily when there is a challenge. For those that are new to the challenge, they seem to happen about once every three months. I am not sure exactly how often but it is often enough to be challenging. During this challenge I will share with you some of those friends. These are people that I enjoy reading daily and perhaps you might like to discover.

It is a little after 4 a.m. here in Wisconsin as I write this. I have my large (16 oz.) cup of hot tea beside me. Somewhere in a farm house in Nebraska Amy will be getting up to start her day. I’m not sure what time her day starts but it is early because this is the time she has a few minutes to her self. Later her husband Bryan will join her for perhaps a farm hearty breakfast that is sure to include some “Bullet Proof Coffee”, the recipe for which she shares on one of her blogs.

Before she starts to share her world with us, she will spend a little time with her bible and The Bibleon most days she will share a verse from the bible with us on the internet. Sometime after that, with a cup of bullet proof coffee at her side, she will set down to write and share her world with us, and what a wonderful world she shares.

Her days are filled with home schooling, farming, raising chickens and other animals, raising a family, canning food for the cold winter months ahead, baking breads and other goodies that she and her family will sell at Fresh Baked Breadsthe local farmers market. (I am told that her mom makes the best donuts in the world) She sometimes complains a little that her house is not always as clean as it should be, but with the work load she has, where can she find the time. I’ll tell you where. Last year, during lent, she set aside 20 minutes a day to clean a little area of the house, and she shared her progress on her blog. That reminded me it was time for me to go through my spice rack and get rid of any outdated spices that were not longer any good.

Oh, about the bread she bakes, she shares the recipes and a secret way to make your own bread. If you have ever wanted to bake your own Healthy bread, you will find that secret in one of her blog articles.

She always over plants her vegetables but she plants only heirloom seeds and she will share the information where to get them so that you can also enjoy vegetables that are not heirloom tomatoesGMO seeds, which you really want to avoid. She plants many different vegetables but she seems to have a thing about tomatoes and you will get to enjoy the recipes she uses when she prepares them for the winter months ahead. (Rich tomato sauce and salsa) The corn is already in the freezer, she shared how to prepare the corn when her and her family were gifted with a pickup truck full of farm fresh corn, all they had to do was pick it. If you watch closely, I am willing to bet that Amy will be sharing a wonderful soup recipe that includes some of that corn. It will probably appear on her blog shortly after the first major snowfall.

If you follow her blog, you will meet Bryan, her husband, although he stays mostly in the background, he is her support system. You will also meet little Mack, Amaila, the other four children, her mom and dad as well as sisters and brothers. You will learn how to raise chickens and how not to, and what to do when you are snow bound to avoid cabin fever.

Her, her husband and the rest of the family are also the backbone of a theater play that they put on once a year. They make all the props, help the cast learn their lines, and do all the things that bring the play to the stage.

In Amy’s spare time she likes to set back and enjoy an good book. So, would you like to know where you can get all these wonderful recipes while learning a little about life in the Nebraska plains. Just visit and you will discover this wonder blog, or you can visit   where you can meet many other talented writers that will share information on many different subjects, some of which will be exactly what you enjoy. I will be sharing more about some of my favorite bloggers in the next few days so please check back and meet the Friends I’ve met Online.

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Mango and Bean Wraps

Mango and Bean WrapMy wife can make a meal with tortillas and anything else that she has available. Mango and Bean Wraps are one of those meals where with just a few items she can make a delightful dinner or late afternoon snack. Of course we makes our own fresh tortillas so it can be a taco or a wrap depending on if you roll it or fold it.

There are many different varieties of mango’s available in the marketplace, depending on time of year and your location. We are using the larger of the two main types available in Mexico. Mango’s are native to the southern part of Asia and are reported to have spread to the world from India. However it got here, Mexico has many mango         Mangoplantations and exports about 30 million cases of mango’s to the United States each year. It is almost impossible to know how many mango’s are consumed in Mexico as there are trees everywhere. We have two of our own as well as papaya and banana trees. This is about average for anyone that has a little land next to their casa.

Mango’s are a great source of vitamin’s A, B-6, C and E as well as prebiotic fiber, potassium and some copper.

In this recipe we will also enjoy the benefits of Avocado which is native to Mexico and Central America. The Hass avocado is the black pebble skinned fruit often sold in your local avocadomarkets while the Fuerte is the medium sized smooth skinned type often sold right next to the Hass variety. Both contain rich nutty flavor and are often used in place of butter in a sandwich. They are a main stay on the table of most Mexican homes and are included in meals from breakfast to a late night snack.

Avocados contain nearly 20 vitamins and minerals, some of which are vitamins A, B1,B2, B3, B5, B6, C, E and K. Some of the minerals are magnesium, iron, and potassium as well as dietary fiber.

Mango and Bean Wraps
Recipe type: lunch/dinner
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: 4 wraps
  • 2 sweet bell peppers, diced
  • 1 small sweet onion, diced
  • 2 cups cooked black beans, rinsed and drained well
  • 2 mangos, diced
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 ripe avocado, pitted, peeled, diced
  • 4 (medium size) healthy tortillas (corn, sun-dried tomato, spinach, low carb, whatever you like); you may warm these if you wish before filling
  1. In a skillet over medium heat, add a drizzle of oil, the diced bell peppers and onion, stir and cook just until softened, then add the beans, reduce heat to low and cook gently for 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, take out a bowl and add the mangos, lime juice, cilantro, and avocado, stir and keep cold.
  3. Lay the tortillas out on a work surface. Evenly divide the warm bean mixture in the middle of each tortilla, then evenly divide the cold mango mixture on top of each.
  4. Roll the tortillas up and enjoy immediately.

We make our own tortillas however if you are going to purchase them already made, you can get the regular ones for tacos or you can get thin tortillas that are made for wraps.      home made tortillasWe always warm ours slightly because they roll much better when warm. And of course it is always more fun when you make them fresh, not to mention that you can leave out all the chemicals that are used to make them appear to remain fresh for a couple of weeks on the grocery shelf. The one in the picture is a little puffed up. They do that when you first turn them over, but they drop back to normal as soon as you remove them from the heat.

While I did include corn tortillas with others in this recipe, I prefer flour tortillas and I use a gluten free flour which works just fine.

Chefs Secret: I add just a little coconut flour to my gluten free flour mix when I make tortillas that will have mango in the recipe. Mango and coconut just go together so well.

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