2010 has opened up a whole new world for me. Last year at this time I’m not even sure I knew what a blog was. But last Spring I entered into the blogging world with Gluten-Free Cat and life changed. I’ve been inspired. I’ve met really great people. And I’ve learned so much about gluten-free cooking and eating well. At the close of this year, I want to share my top 10 recipes with you and the lessons that I’ve learned from them.
Number 10: Orange Apricot Scones – This year I’ve learned to bake with almond flour. I picked up a copy of The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook by Elana Amsterdam, and her recipes have revolutionized my baking. These scones are definitely one of my favorite Elana recipes.
Number 9: Cranberry Orange Quinoa Salad – I learned to really think about the combination of flavors this year. The Flavor Bible by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg has really inspired me to learn why certain tastes just work and to branch out and try new things. But cranberry and orange are two of my all-time favorite combos.
Number 8: Grilled Wahoo with Salsa Verde – This was a meal to remember. It could be because the wahoo had been caught that morning. Or maybe it was the salty sea air, the sound of the waves, and the laughter around the table. But, really, there is just no way that you can go wrong with local fresh fish, tomatillos, cilantro, and olive oil. Lesson? Eat locally.
Number 7: Summer Veggie Burgers – Until this year, meat has always been the focal point of our meals. I haven’t become a vegetarian yet, but I’ve learned to eat from a wider range of foods. And I’ve been surprised at how much I enjoy vegetarian dishes.
Number 6: Spicy Swiss Chard and Veggie Stew – I didn’t even know that swiss chard was vegetable a year ago. Thanks to our CSA, my eyes have been opened to veggies that I never knew existed, and I’ve learned what a difference it makes to eat organic, locally-grown, farm-fresh produce.
Number 5: Grilled Salmon with Nectarine Basil Salsa – Okay, so anyone can grill up a piece of succulent salmon, but this fresh fruit and herb salsa is amazing. The key to amazing flavor is fresh herbs.
Number 4: Cherry Carob Smoothie – I often get stuck in a smoothie rut. I love my strawberry banana combo as well as green smoothies, but this summer I learned about the value of eating seasonally. During cherry season, I created this winner, and I can’t wait for cherry season to begin again!
Number 3: Southwestern Turkey Burgers – This recipe represents how I learned to play with my food this year. I used to be a recipe follower, but now I use recipes to start off on a culinary adventure. This tender turkey burger has some kick and rich, mouth-watering flavors as a result of a playful evening.
Number 2: Gluten-Free Sun-Dried Tomato Bagels – Making these bagels after reading Jenn’s blog called Jenn Cuisine was one of the gluten-free highlights of the year! First of all, I got to eat the best gluten-free bagels I’ve ever tasted. And secondly, I realized that my limits in the kitchen are only defined by me. I never would have even attempted to make bagels a year ago. With encouragement and direction from other bloggers, I’ve learned so much about technique and impossible possibilities.
Number 1: Gluten-Free Ravioli with Spinach, Mushroom, and Cheese – Making homemade ravioli with the Husband on Christmas Eve was a memory I will always treasure, and this recipe will be used for years to come. Again, the ravioli reminds me not to limit myself, but also that the process is half the fun.
I’d love to hear your thoughts. What did you learn this year? Or what was your favorite recipe of 2010? Please link to your blog or a recipe that you love in the comment space below.
Happy New Year!