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Carol's in the kitchen, cooking up recipes for www.GfreeCuisine.com and www.CarolFenster.com

Coming October 7, 2014: Carol's latest cookbook, 100 Best Quick Gluten-Free Recipes, wherever books are sold, including pre-order at Amazon.com

Visit Carol's booth at the Annual Food Fair in Denver at the Merchandise Mart on Sunday, August 17.

Gluten-Free Super Bowl Party

Gluten-free Southwestern Chili

Southwestern Chili

NEWS FLASH: Carol’s latest book,  Gluten-Free 101: The Essential Beginner’s Guide to Easy Gluten-Free Cooking is now available in bookstores, natural food stores, and Amazon.com.

Get your copy today.

Super-Bowl Entertaining with Ease

Whether you are hosting a Super Bowl party next week, or just want a super-easy menu for a cold winter night, this flavorful, gluten-free menu is sure to be a hit. It has simple ingredients and is easy on the budget.

My motto, especially for beginners, is: “Stick to simple gluten-free recipes with gluten-free dishes that everyone recognizes and serve them in a simple way.” Try this easy menu.

Gluten-Free Super Bowl Menu

~Southwestern Chili~

~Plate of fresh vegetables and basket of corn chips~

~Guacamole and Mexican Salsa Dips~

~Cornbread~

~Chocolate Brownies~

~Your favorite beverages~


Southwestern Chili©

by Carol Fenster

You can control the heat in this flavorful chili by how much chili powder you use. It also freezes well, so make a batch and freeze in individual-serving containers for a quick, easy lunch.

1 pound lean ground beef or turkey

1/2 cup finely chopped onions

2 cans (15 ounces) pinto or kidney beans (or both), rinsed and drained

2 cans (15 ounces) canned tomatoes

1 large garlic clove, minced

2 teaspoons chili powder (or to taste)

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)

1/4 teaspoon sugar

1 cup water (or more)

In large Dutch oven or skillet, combine ground beef and onion. Cook over medium heat until meat and onion are gently browned. Add remaining ingredients and bring to boil. Add enough water to reach desired consistency. Cover and simmer on low heat for 2 hours. Refrigerate overnight. Or, prepare morning of party and cook in slow cooker 4 to 6 hours. Serve with shakers of additional spices near slow-cooker for those who want to spice it up. Serves 6 (can double or triple)

Carol’s Tips for Hosting a Super Bowl Party

[1] Choose a simple menu that is also dairy-free, since lactose-intolerance often occurs in people who react to gluten. Stick with high-flavor, straightforward dishes that you know how to prepare and that your guests are familiar with. It’s better to serve a simple, flavorful dish that you have mastered than to attempt a new, complicated dish that might not meet your expectations.

[2] Plan a menu that can be cooked-ahead―preferably the day before the party (or that morning)―and then reheated before the party. I like to cook this chili the day before and refrigerate it overnight to let the flavors meld. It doesn’t need thickening, so there is no conundrum about which gluten-free thickener to use. Reheated on party day and served in a slow-cooker (or cooked in the slow-cooker all day), it stays hot throughout the party.

[3] Serve a simple gluten-free bread that appeals to everyone. One of my favorites is a moist, homey Cornbread which pairs well with chili. Bake it on the morning of the party, cut into serving pieces earlier in the day, and pile high on a platter. Wrap in plastic wrap until party time to avoid drying out.

[4] Choose easily-served desserts. Luscious layer cakes are pretty, but require your full attention when cutting and plating―which takes you away from your guests and the TV. Instead, serve “grab and go” desserts such as gluten-free cookies (store-bought if you’re not a baker) or Brownies served on big platters. That way, guests serve themselves whenever they please, freeing you to focus on your favorite team.

[5] Make it easy for you and your guests. Serve the Southwestern Chili in a slow-cooker which allows guests to help themselves whenever they please. Place hot pepper sauce nearby for those who want to jazz it up a bit. Instead of bowls, use coffee cups so guests can balance food on their laps while watching TV―the cup’s narrow tops reduce spills and the cup’s handles make hot soup easier to hold. Arrange gluten-free cookies or pre-cut brownies on a platter so guests can help themselves―and you won’t have to do any last-minute serving of dessert and possibly miss that game-changing touchdown.

Enjoy the game and may your favorite team win! Personally, I’m rooting for the Denver Broncos!

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