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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Savory Hoecakes and Garlic Rosemary Potatoes

This weekend, we had my mom, brothers, and nephew come over for dinner. I try to have them all over at least once a month. Owen (nephew) has some serious food allergies, and he's getting to that age when he is noticing what other people are eating and he wants the same food! It's amazing how young people are when they start to feel the need to fit in and be like others. I love providing a large meal that is entirely Owen friendly.

Enjoying some savory hoecakes and straight up ketchup. Blech.

We had a large spread of fruit, veggies, savory hoecakes, garlic rosemary potatoes, non-vegan friendly items for the family members who partake, and cupcakes for dessert. The favorites were the hoecakes and the cupcakes. The hoecakes nearly didn't make it to the table, and the few leftovers we had were packed up for Owen.

Savory Hoecakes
1 pear, pureed
1/4-1/3 cup (loose packed) garlic spears, sliced
3.5 oz ground quinoa
1 Tb ground chia
3.5 sorghum flour
1 oz tapioca flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3 T safflower oil
4 oz hemp milk
1 tsp vinegar

The batter responds best when the frying pan is hot and the batter is formed to pancakes no bigger than 2 1/2 inches across. Plenty of oil is needed as well - not to deep fry, but the pan should be amply coated.

Substitutions: Garlic spears are something I recommend folks try if they can. They are in season now, and should be available at farmer's markets. If they are not available in your area, green onions are a perfectly acceptable substitute. Apple (preferably varieties meant for cooking) can replace the pear, but Owen is allergic.

I use a coffee grinder to grind up my quinoa flour, which leaves some texture, like corn meal. I combine the dry ingredients, then the wet ingredients, folding in the garlic spears last. They cook much like a pancake, and are ready to flip when bubbles form at the top and they appear cooked partially on the sides.

Rosemary and Garlic Roasted Potatoes
2 pounds potatoes
3 cloves garlic
2 sprigs rosemary, minced
3 Tb olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. I dice the potatoes in 1/2" or smaller squares, depending on how long I have to cook them. After dicing, the potatoes go in a bowl with olive oil, minced garlic, rosemary and salt and pepper. That all gets thrown into a baking dish and into the oven for about 45 minutes.

It was a tasty meal, and I could tell other folks liked their food because it was pretty quiet. Owen is still at an age where he picks at his food and doesn't seem to eat a whole lot, but he will eat quite a bit of dessert. I made "red" velvet cupcakes with cream "cheese" frosting. I say "red" because I'm having a hard time finding the right natural ingredients to get that amazing red color. I'm beginning to become convinced that red velvet color is only possible with gross artificial coloring, but I'm still toying around with beets.

He may have been imitating a dinosaur here.

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