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Festival Foods

Gluten-Free Holiday
If you are serving a group of people during the holidays, chances are you will have a guest or two with a special needs diet.  Gluten free, low-sodium, low-fat, lactose intolerant, shellfish and other food allergies are just a few challenges that the host/hostess might want to consider when menu planning.  In addition you might also have vegans, vegetarians, or low carb eaters! We know this seems overwhelming but luckily Festival Foods can help, especially with our variety of gluten-free foods.  In fact, you can check out several of our deli and signature meat items from the comfort of your own home-just click here.  If you haven’t visited our Eat Well section at you are in for a surprise as we have lots of great information about all types of health/diet concerns. In addition to our website, all of our stores have printed lists of gluten free items; just ask for it at the service desk.   Better yet, give us a call and ask to speak with the Natural Foods Department Manager.  They can help you over the phone or would be more than happy to make an appointment to meet you at the store to show you what we have to offer.  Not finding what you are looking for?  Simply ask any Festival Associate or fill out a want card.  We will make it a priority to locate the item for you in a timely manner. Here are some recipes provide by the Fox Valley Celiac Group. There are many great options like pies, cookies, bars, dips, soups, casseroles and more to help make your holiday entertaining a success!


Several FVC members have asked for a collection of gluten-free holiday recipes. Bernie and Helen are sharing some of their favorites with you. HOLIDAY SMOKIE LINKS 4 pounds smokie links 2 apples, peeled, seeded, and sliced 3 medium onions, sliced 1 cup brown sugar Place all ingredients into a greased baking dish. Cover tightly; bake at 250° for 4 hours. (This can be made in a crock pot.) REUBEN DIP 1/2 cup mayonnaise 1/2 cup sour cream 8 ounces cream cheese 1/4 cup onion, finely chopped 3 cups Swiss cheese, shredded, divided 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish 1cup sliced corned beef, chopped fine 1 cup sauerkraut, drained Preheat oven to 350°. Mix together all ingredients except one cup cheese. Pour into small greased baking dish. Sprinkle top with remaining cup of cheese. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Serve warm out of the oven with cocktail size GF Rye bread, bagel chips, or crackers. CHEF JEFF’S MEATBALLS WITH CREAMY SAUERKRAUT SAUCE 1 pound ground pork 2 eggs, fresh, large 1/4 cup onions, minced 1 tablespoon seasoned salt 1 tablespoon pepper, coarse or table grind 2 tablespoons oil 1 1/2 cups heavy cream 1 cup sauerkraut, chopped Pinch caraway seed, optional Prepare meatballs by combining ground pork, eggs, onion, seasoned salt and pepper. Form into approximately 3/4 – 1-inch size balls. Brown the meatballs in the oil until thoroughly browned. Add the cream and bring to a simmer. Allow the cream to reduce to form the cream sauce. Drain the sauerkraut until relatively dry. Season the sauce with the sauerkraut (and caraway if desired). Allow the sauce to return to simmer. Serve. CARAMEL-COATED SPICED NUTS 1 cup brown sugar, packed 3 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice 2 egg whites 1 teaspoon water 1 1/2 cups roasted almonds 1 1/2 cups pecan halves 1 cup whole cashews Mix together the sugar and spice. Set aside. Beat egg whites until foamy. Add all nuts and stir to coat. Add sugar/spice mixture and stir. Spread onto greased baking sheet and bake at 325° for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Store the nuts in an airtight container. Yield: 5 cups TASTY NUT CLUSTERS 1 pound Ambrosia Dark or White Confectionery Coating, cut into small pieces or 12 ounces Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate Chips 1 pound peanuts or cashews, or amount to your taste Melt chocolate or chips over hot water, stirring until completely melted. Remove from heat and stir in nuts. Drop by the teaspoonful onto waxed or parchment paper. Allow to cool (will set faster if put into the refrigerator). Store the nuts in an airtight container. PEANUT BRITTLE 1 cup sugar 1/2 cup light corn syrup 1 cup roasted peanuts, salted 1 teaspoon butter 1 teaspoon GF vanilla 1 teaspoon baking soda In 1 1/2-quart casserole, combine sugar and syrup. Microwave the mixture on HIGH (10) for 3 minutes. Stir in peanuts. Microwave the mixture on HIGH (10) for an additional 5 to 7 minutes, until peanuts are light brown, stirring every 2 minutes. Remove from microwave; add butter and vanilla; stir well. Add baking soda and gently stir until light and foamy. Pour mixture onto lightly greased cookie sheet and spread out. Let cool 30 minutes to 1 hour. When cool, break into small pieces. TOMATO SOUP 1 quart stewed tomatoes 2 slices onion 1 bay leaf 1 teaspoon sugar 1 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon coarse ground pepper 2 tablespoon butter 2 tablespoons GF flour 1 1/2 cups milk Put the tomatoes, onion, bay leaf, sugar, salt, and pepper into a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into a saucepan and simmer 10-20 minutes. Make a white sauce with the butter, flour and milk. Slowly add to hot tomato mixture, stirring constantly. Soup will curdle if allowed to boil. Yield: 5 cups BROCCOLI SOUP 1/2 cup coarsely chopped onion 1 1/4 teaspoons curry powder 1/4 cup butter 1 tablespoon cornstarch 3 cups milk 1 cup boiling water 1 quart chopped fresh broccoli or 20 ounces frozen 1/2 teaspoon oregano Salt and pepper to taste Thinly sliced lemon Place the onion and curry powder in the butter and sauté until crisp-tender. Blend in cornstarch. Add 2 cups of the milk and cook, stirring constantly until mixture boils 1-2 minutes. Pour into blender jar and let cool a few minutes then blend until smooth. Add boiling water to broccoli and cook until just tender. Put broccoli, one-half at a time, in blender jar and blend with remaining milk until not quite smooth. Combine blended broccoli and onion mixtures in soup pot. Add oregano, salt, and pepper to taste. Heat the soup to serving temperature. Serve garnished with lemon slices. Yield: 6 cups NEW YEARS DAY SOUP Southerners believe that Black-Eyed Peas give good luck all year if eaten on New Years day. 1 cup smoked ham, diced . 2 ribs celery, chopped 1 medium onion, chopped 2 carrots, chopped 2 cans Black-Eyed Peas, undrained 2 cans chicken broth 2 cans diced tomatoes 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce 1 1/2 cups fresh spinach, chopped 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped 1/2 teaspoon back pepper Sauté ham and raw vegetables in large soup pot for 5 minutes. Add peas, broth, tomatoes and tomato sauce. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1/2 hour. Stir in spinach, parsley, and pepper. Servings: 6 CRANBERRY SALAD 1 pound cranberries 1 orange 1 1/2 cups sugar 1 cup seeded grapes 1/2 cup chopped walnuts 1/2 pound miniature marshmallows 1 cup whipped cream Grind cranberries and orange (with rind) fine. Add sugar and let stand overnight. Add grapes, nuts, and marshmallows. Fold in whipped cream just before serving. Servings: 10-12 TWENTY-FOUR HOUR SALAD Salad 2 cups grapes, drained 2 cups pineapple chunks, drained 1 can mandarin oranges, drained 2 cups miniature marshmallows (add just before serving) Dressing 2 eggs, beaten 2 tablespoons sugar Pinch salt 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1 tablespoon butter 1 cup whipping cream, whipped Combine the dressing ingredients and cook in a double boiler, stirring constantly, until thickened. Cool. Fold the whipped cream into the cooled dressing. Pour the dressing over the fruit. Let stand 24 hours in the refrigerator. Just before serving, fold in the marshmallows. CASSEROLE OF VEGETABLES 5 medium carrots, sliced (1 1/2 cups) 1 medium onion, sliced 1 10-ounce package frozen leaf spinach 3 tablespoons butter or margarine 3 tablespoons sweet rice flour or cornstarch 1 1/2 cups milk 1 cup shredded process cheese 1/4 teaspoon salt and dash pepper 1/2 cup buttered soft bread crumbs Cook carrots and onion covered in small amount boiling salted water until almost tender, about 8 minutes. Drain. Cook spinach following package directions. Drain. For sauce, melt butter; blend in flour; gradually stir in milk. Cook and stir till thick; remove from heat. Add cheese, salt, and pepper, stirring till cheese melts. Place half the spinach in ungreased 1-quart casserole. Cover with half the carrots and onions; top with half the cheese sauce. Repeat. Top with crumbs. Bake at 350° for 15-20 minutes. Serves: 6 SQUASH AND APPLE BAKE 2 pounds butternut or buttercup squash 1 tablespoon GF flour mix 1/2 cup packed brown sugar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup margarine or butter, melted 1/2 teaspoon ground mace 2 large baking apples, cored, cut into 1/2-inch slices Cut squash in half; remove seeds and fibers. Pare. Cut into 1/2-inch slices or pieces. Arrange squash in ungreased 7 1/2 x 2 x 12-inch oblong baking dish. Arrange apple slices over the squash. Mix together the flour, brown sugar, salt, butter and mace. Dribble sugar mixture over the apples. Cover and bake in 350° oven until squash is tender, 50-60 minutes. Optional: Lightly sprinkle cinnamon over all before baking. Servings: 6 HOLIDAY WHOLE BEEF TENDERLOIN (CHATEAUBRIAND) 3-5 pound whole beef tenderloin 3 tablespoons butter 6 slices bacon 1 large onion, chopped 1 clove minced garlic 8 ounces sliced mushrooms, drained 2 tablespoons chili sauce 1/4 teaspoon marjoram 1/4 teaspoon leaf thyme 4 drops Tabasco® sauce 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 1 envelope Herb-Ox® beef granules 2 cups red wine (Cella Lambrusco) Cornstarch, if desired, for thickening Preheat oven to 450°. Place whole tenderloin into greased, shallow baking pan. Set aside. Fry bacon to crisp, drain well, and crumble into pieces. Add butter, onions, and garlic; sauté for 2 minutes. Add 1 cup wine and reduce by half. Add chili sauce, spices, Worcestershire, and remaining wine. Simmer for 20 minutes. Pour half of the sauce over meat. Let stand 10 for minutes. Cover meat pan with foil; bake 35 minutes for rare, 45 minutes for medium, or longer for well done. Meanwhile, thicken (if desired) the remaining sauce with small amount of cornstarch dissolved in cold water. Cook in small saucepan to desired degree of thickness. Pour over meat before serving. Note: double the quantity of sauce if you like a lot of gravy over your meat. This is an excellent sauce for a very tender cut of meat. Serves: 8-10 PEANUT BUTTER CRISPY BARS 1 cup Karo Light Corn Syrup 1 cup sugar 1 1/2 cups Skippy creamy peanut butter 2 cups Hershey’s Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips 6 cups Erewhon’s Gluten-Free Crispy Brown Rice Cereal Combine syrup and sugar. Bring to boil; remove from heat. Add peanut butter. Mix until smooth. Pour over cereal. Mix lightly. Press lightly into buttered 9 x 13-inch pan. Melt chips in a microwave-safe bowl. Spread on top of bars. (These also can be dropped by the spoonful and omit the chips to reduce calories.) Note: Erewhon‘s Gluten-Free Crispy Brown Rice cereal can be found in the health food section of the grocery store. Make sure to get the box that says "gluten free," not just "wheat free." PECAN PIE BARS CSA Chapter 46 Crust 1 1/2 cups tapioca flour 1 1/2 cups almond flour 1/2 cup sugar 2 sticks butter, softened 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum Blend together in large mixing bowl the flour, sugar, butter, salt, and xanthan gum until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press firmly and evenly into a parchment lined 10x15x1-inch baking pan. (An oiled pan causes sticking.) Bake crust at 350° for 25 minutes. Filling 4 eggs, slightly beaten 1 1/2 cup dark corn syrup 1 1/2 cups sugar 3 tablespoons butter, melted 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla 2 1/2 cups pecans, chopped fine Mix together in large bowl eggs, corn syrup, sugar, butter, and vanilla until blended. Stir in pecans. Spread evenly over hot crust. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until set. Cool on wire rack. Cut into bars. Yields: 48 GF CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES 2 sticks butter 3/4 cup packed brown sugar 1/4 cup white sugar 2 eggs 1 teaspoon vanilla 2 1/4 cups GF flour blend 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 box (3.4ounce) instant vanilla pudding 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional) Sift together flour blend, baking soda, and pudding mix. Set aside. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, the brown sugar, and the white sugar. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until fluffy. Stir in flour mixture. Mix well. Add chocolate chips and nuts. Mix well. Drop by tablespoons onto parchment papered cookie sheet. Bake at 350° for 12 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes. Remove from pan and continue to cool. Yields: 34 cookies; 151 calories each BERNIE’S CUT-OUT COOKIES 2 1/2 cups GF flour blend 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 cup butter 1 cup sugar 2 eggs 1 tablespoon vanilla Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. In mixer bowl cream together butter and sugar; add eggs and continue beating until light and fluffy. Add vanilla; blend again. Stir in sifted dry ingredients. Blend well. Divide into three parts. Wrap each in plastic wrap. Chill one hour before rolling. Roll to desired thickness between two layers of plastic wrap that has been lightly sprinkled with GF flour to prevent sticking. Cut into shapes. Bake on parchment papered cookie sheet at 375° for approximately 10 minutes. Frost or glaze as desired. Yield: 28; Calories: 130 (before frosting) CHOCOLATE LOVER'S FUDGE COOKIES 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped 1 cup walnuts 2 tablespoons salted butter 2 eggs 2/3 cup sugar 1/3 cup buckwheat flour 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1/4 teaspoon baking powder Preheat oven to 350°. Grease a cookie sheet with unsalted butter. In a medium saucepan, melt 1 cup of the semi-sweet chocolate chips, unsweetened chocolate, and the butter. Remove from heat; add eggs, sugar, buckwheat flour, vanilla, and baking powder. Beat mixture until combined scraping sides of the pan. Stir in chopped bittersweet chocolate, remaining semisweet chocolate chips, and walnuts. Drop teaspoons of dough onto the cookie sheet 2 inches apart. Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes or until the surface of the cookie looks slightly cracked. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Tom Sawyer flour is a unique blend of white rice flour, sweet rice flour, tapioca flour, xanthan gum, and unflavored gelatin. It appears to perform as an excellent “cup for cup” substitution for regular flour in any of your favorite recipes. SHORTBREAD COOKIES 1 stick real butter, softened 1/4 cup, plus 2 tablespoons oil 1/2 cup powdered sugar 1/2 cup granulated sugar 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 egg 2 1/2 cups GF flour blend (Tom Sawyer) 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar Preheat oven 400°. Cream together butter, oil, powdered sugar, and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and continue creaming. In separate bowl, sift together flour, salt, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Add flour mixture to creamed sugar mixture and mix well. Drop by spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet and flatten each slightly. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until lightly brown. Yield: 1 1/2 – 2 dozen; 137 calories each Note: This cookie dough is very versatile. Chocolate chips, nuts or dried fruit pieces may be added in the amount of 1/2 cup. Cream of Tartar is an acid ingredient which, when combined with baking soda, creates the “homemade” version of baking powder. CHOCOLATE HO-HO BARS Brownie Base 1/2 cup butter 2 squares baking chocolate 1 cup white sugar 3 eggs 1/2 cup Tom Sawyer® flour 1 teaspoon vanilla 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped Mix all ingredients together. Spread into a greased baking pan. Bake at 350° for 15-20 minutes. Cool completely. White Filling 1/2 cup butter 8 ounces cream cheese 2 teaspoons vanilla 1 (5-ounce) can evaporated milk 1/2 cup granulated sugar Mix well and beat until fluffy. Spread over cooled brownie base. Refrigerate to help set up. Frosting 2/3 cup brown sugar 1/3 cup cold water 1 1/2 squares baking chocolate 3 tablespoons butter 3 tablespoons half and half 1 cup powdered sugar Combine the brown sugar, water, and baking chocolate in small saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring continuously. Remove from heat and stir in the butter. Cool. Mix in half and half and powdered sugar. Beat to a spreading consistency. Spread over white filling. Keep refrigerated. Cut into squares as desired. HOT FUDGE SAUCE 3 (1-ounce) squares unsweetened chocolate 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk 1/2 cup hot water 1/4 teaspoons salt 1/4 cup sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract In top of double boiler, melt chocolate over hot water. Stir in condensed milk. Cook until very thick; stir constantly. Add hot water, salt, and sugar; continue to cook until mixture is very smooth and of desired thickness. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla extract. Serve hot over ice cream. Top with toasted pecans. Makes: 2 cups
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