Tuesday, November 27, 2012

A Wheat free Thanksgiving with Hawaii Ingredients

Mac-nut Biscuits
This Thanksgiving we made a major change in our favorite holiday foods.  We replaced our bread dressing with wild rice dressing and made a crushed nut crust for our pumpkin pie.  We found alternatives to our favorite cream gravy and buttermilk biscuits using Hawaii ingredients and started a new tradition of wheat-free Thanksgivings. 

We started a wheat-free diet after two recent gout attacks that occurred after eating a lot of bread.  We have not found any studies that show that wheat causes gout.  However, some doctors claim that the modern hybrid dwarf wheat, the primary wheat available today, causes insulin spikes, inflammation, and is responsible for many other health problems.  Though we find it hard to believe that wheat is as toxic as Dr. Davis claims in his book: Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health having a gout attack after eating a lot of bread motivated us to see if a wheat free diet would improve our health.  After only six weeks on a wheat free diet, my feet are less swollen and shoes that were too small a year ago suddenly fit which makes me suspect that bread may indeed be the cause in my most recent gout attacks.   Though we miss bread, we have found healthy replacements for our favorite foods using local products from the Big Island of Hawaii.

Here are two of the recipes we used last week for Thanksgiving. 

Wheat-free Biscuits
2½  cups dry-roasted macadamia meal (we ground Mauna Loa Baking pieces)
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp gluten free baking powder
3 Tbsp coconut oil
3 tsp coconut milk
2 eggs

Mix the baking powder and soda with the macadamia nut meal.  Whisk the eggs, coconut oil, and coconut milk and add to dry ingredients.  The mixture is very wet – you can roll it into flat balls or spoon it on to an oiled flat pan.  Cook in oven (preheated 350 degrees) for about 20 minutes until lightly brown.  This makes about 12 biscuits.

Coconut Cream Gravy
2 Tbsp  rice flour
3 Tbsp  coconut flour
4 Tbsp  coconut oil
1/2 cup broth
1/2 cup coconut milk
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix the flours and oil in a pan and heat the roux.  Slowly stir in the cup of broth and coconut milk until all the roux is absorbed.  Turn up the heat and stir until it boils, then lower the heat. Stir until the gravy thickens – makes 1 cup of gravy.
Coconut Cream Gravy

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