Tag Archives: American

Zucchini Rice (Arroz con Calabacines)

Perfect as a side dish or standalone vegetarian meal, this zucchini rice one-pot dish is easy and delicious. This full-flavor rice can accompany a simple grilled fish or chicken. It is also a great accompaniment to a mix green salad for a vegetarian dinner. The rice is cooked pilaf style, meaning that the raw rice is fried first so that the grains will be soft but stand apart. Do not use pre-cooked, pre-seasoned, or converted rice for this recipe. These types of rice will not absorb the flavors or produce the right texture.

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten-Free
Level: Easy
Prep: 10 mins
Cooking: 20 mins
Total: 30 mins
Yield: 4 servings

Special Equipment

  • Large bowl
  • Fine-mesh strainer
  • 3-quart heavy saucepan or small Dutch oven with tight-fitting lid


  • 1 cup raw long-grain white rice (preferably not converted)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 fresh jalapeno pepper, cored, seeded, and finely chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed, peeled, and finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled (Preferably Dominican, Mexican or Greek oregano)
  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes in puree
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 zucchinis, sliced
  • 2 cups hot water
  • Chopped fresh cilantro (small tender stem and leaves only), to taste


  1. Put the rice in a large bowl and cover with cold water until it reaches 2 inches above the rice. Stir and leave to soak for 10 minutes. Carefully pour off water, leaving rice in bowl. Cover rice with cold water. Using hands gently swish grains to release excess starch. Pour off the starchy water as often as needed until the water runs nearly clear, at least 2 more times. Drain rice in a fine-mesh strainer. Set aside.
  2. In a 3-quart saucepan or small Dutch oven with tight-fitting lid, heat the butter and oil over medium-high heat.
  3. Add the onions and jalapeno pepper. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook until the onions are transparent, about 3 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  5. Add tomatoes, cumin, oregano, and lime juice. Stir to combine and cook for 3 minutes.
  6. Add the rice and stir to coat well with sauté. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring almost continually.
  7. Add the zucchini and cook, scrapping the bottom of the pan to prevent sticking, for 2 minutes.
  8. Add water, 1 teaspoon salt, and cilantro. Stir and mix well. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper, only if needed. Bring to a rapid simmer. Cover (Note: If the lid does not fit tightly, cover the pan tightly with a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil and then replace lid to trap moisture and steam). Reduce heat to the lowest possible setting and cook for 20 minutes. (Note: Do not remove the lid or stir while the rice is cooking. If you remove the lid of your pan during cooking, all that steam will quickly escape from the pan, leaving your rice undercooked in the allocated time as this steam is what cooks the rice.)
  9. To serve, use a large folk to turn rice over carefully from the bottom to distribute the flavors evenly. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve immediately.

Gluten-Free Berry Crumble

This Gluten-Free berry crumble recipe is my favorite summer dessert, with the perfect balance of sweet to tart, tender to crisp, and fruit to crumble. Vanilla ice cream on the side is highly recommended.

Course: Dessert
Diet: Gluten-Free
Level: Easy
Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 35 to 40 mins
Additional: 15 mins
Total: 1 hr 25 mins

Special equipment

  • Stand mixer with a paddle attachment
  • Large mixing bowls
  • 9 by 13-inch baking dish
  • Flour sifter
  • Whisk
  • Cooling wire rack


  • Non-stick cooking spray, for greasing baking pan
  • Vanilla ice cream, for serving


  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup fresh red raspberries
  • 1 cup fresh black raspberries
  • 1 pound fresh strawberries, halved, or quartered if large
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 lemons, zested
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Pinch cayenne pepper


  • 1 cup America’s Test Kitchen gluten-free flour blend, at room temperature, recipe follows
  • ½ cup old-fashioned oats
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature

America’s Test Kitchen Gluten-Free Flour Blend

Yield: 42 ounces (about 9 1/3 cups)


  • 4 ½ cups plus 1/3 cup white rice flour (Bob’s Red Mill strongly recommended)
  • 1 2/3 cups brown rice flour (Bob’s Red Mill strongly recommended)
  • 1 1/3 cups potato Starch (Make sure you use potato Starch, not potato flour)
  • ¾ cup tapioca starch
  • 3 tablespoons instant nonfat dry milk powder


Mixing gluten-free flour blend

In a large bowl, gently whisk all ingredients together until well combined. (Note: Take your time and make sure it all gets turned over well.) Then sift the flour blend. To ensure freshness, transfer blend to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 months. Bring it to room temperature before using in a recipe.

Making the Gluten-Free Berry Crumble

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Lightly coat a 9 by 13-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, make filling by combining the blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, granulated sugar, the cornstarch, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Toss until combine. Pour the berry filling into the prepared dish in an even layer. Set aside while preparing topping.
  4. Make topping by combining the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, oats, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the butter and mix on low speed until the mixture is crumbly. Distribute the topping evenly over the berries, covering the fruit completely. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until the juices are bubbly, and the topping is browned.
  5. When done, remove crumble from oven and let rest on a wire rack for 15 minutes before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature with vanilla ice cream.

My Go-To Swiss Steak

Delicious tender beef cooked to perfection with peppers, onions, and garlic in a flavorful tomato sauce. For the ultimate meal serve over mashed potatoes!

Course: Main Course
Level: Easy
Prep: 30 mins
Cooking: 2 hr
Total: 2 hr 30 mins
Yield: 4 servings

Special equipment


  • 6-quart thick-walled Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid
  • Meat mallet
  • Heavy-Duty plastic wrap
  • Cutting board


  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 pounds (¾ to 1 inch thick) Bottom Round, Chuck or Sirloin Steak
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded, and sliced
  • 1 fresh serrano pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1/2 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 (28-ounce) can good-quality diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed (preferably Mexican or Greek oregano)
  • 1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley (leaves only), for garnish, optional
  • Mashed potatoes, for serving.


  1. Put flour in a shallow dish and season it with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  2. On a cutting board, cut meat into 4 equal size pieces and season on both sides with salt and pepper.
  3. Dredge one of the pieces of meat in the seasoned flour, coating both sides. Put the piece of meat between 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Using a meat mallet, pound it to an even thickness, about 1/2-inch thick. Dredge the meat in the seasoned flour one more time, liberally coating all sides. Then shake to remove off any excess. Arrange meat in a single layer in a shallow dish and repeat process with the remaining pieces of meat.
  4. In a 6-qt Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat until just smoking. Working in 2 batches, add meat in and cook until browned all over, about 2 minutes per side. As the meat browns, transfer to a plate leaving drippings (fat) in the pot.
  5. After all, 4 pieces of meat are browned, add the peppers, onion and celery to drippings. Season well with salt and pepper. Cook until the vegetables are crisp-tender, about 6 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute.
  6. Add the tomato paste and stir to combine. Sauté for 1 to 2 minutes.
  7. Add the canned tomatoes into the pot along with the juice. Stir well scraping the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon to get all the flavorful bits off the bottom; cook for 3 to 5 minutes stirring often.
  8. Add the oregano and Worcestershire sauce and stir to combine.
  9. Add the browned meat and any juices that collected on the plate into the pot. Make sure that the meat is flat and down in the sauce. Bring to a rapid simmer. Cover and reduce heat to the lowest possible setting. Cook until fork tender and falling apart, about 1 ½ to 2 hours.
  10. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper, only if needed.
  11. Serve over mashed potatoes and garnish with chopped parsley if desire.

Pecan Tassies 

These homemade Pecan Tassies are sweet bite-sized pies with a buttery and flaky crust and a golden caramel-pecan filling. Take one bite and you will see what I am talking about. The dough that surrounds the filling is made out of a simple blend of butter, cream cheese, and flour. Because there is no sugar in the dough it is entirely savory, buttery, nutty, and slightly tangy from the cream cheese and the golden pecan filling is a scrumptious mix of butter, brown sugar, vanilla, and toasted pecans.  

Course: Dessert
Level: Easy
Prep: 25 mins
Chilling: 1 hr
Cooking: 25-30 mins
Cooling: 5-10 mins
Total: 1 hr 65 mins
Yield: 24 tassies

 Special equipment 

  • Simple food chopper or food processor 
  • Hand mixer or stand mixer with a paddle attachment
  • Large baking sheet
  • Silicon spatula
  • offset spatula 
  • Plastic wrap
  • Whisk
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Two 12-cup mini muffin pans or a 24-cup mini muffin pan 
  • A tablespoon-sized cookie scoop
  • Cooling wire racks 



  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature  
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened at room temperature (Do not leave unrefrigerated for more than 2 hours)
  • 1 cup sifted all-purpose flour 


  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature  
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed 
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted 
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  •  1/4 teaspoon fine salt 


 Making Dough for the Crust

  1. In the bowl of the electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together the butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. 
  2. Add the flour gradually to the mixer and mix on low until incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.  
  3. Use your hands to press the dough into a solid mass. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.  

 Making Filling 

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  
  2. To toast Pecans, place chopped pecans in a large baking sheet. Roast in the oven until the pecans have a nutty aroma and are lightly toasted, 5 to 6 minutes. Remove and set aside to cool. 
  3. Once cooled, place pecans in a food processor and process until finely ground or the texture of coarse cornmeal, 15 to 30 seconds. Set aside.  
  4. To make filling, in a large bowl, whisk together egg, sugar, butter, vanilla, and salt until sugar is dissolved and mixture is homogenous. Set aside. 

 Making the Pecan Tassies 

  1. Remove dough from refrigerator.  
  2. Using a tablespoon-sized cookie scoop, scoop 1 tablespoon of dough into each muffin cup. Use your fingers to evenly press dough into the bottom and up the sides of each muffin cup.  
  3. Place 1/2 teaspoon of the toasted ground pecans in each of the muffin cups.  
  4. Carefully spoon or pour filling over pecans to come about two-thirds up the sides of each crust.  
  5. Top each tassie dough shell with toasted ground pecans. 
  6. Bake until the filling has puffed, and the pastry has lightly browned, 25 to 30 minutes.  
  7. Remove the pecan tassies from the oven and allow to cool on wire racks for 10 minutes before removing from pans.
  8. Remove from pans to wire racks using an offset spatula. (Note: You may need to run a knife around the edge of the tassie to loosen it. Sometimes the filling cooks over the top of the dough and make the edges of the pan sticky.)
  9. Once the tassies are completely cooled, they can be stored in an airtight container for up to 10 days, or place in a sealed plastic container, using parchment paper to separate the layers and freeze for up to 2 months. Allow tassies to thaw at room temperature.