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You'll find over 400 of my favorite recipes here, including ideas for Quick meals, Cooking for 2, Feasting on Leftovers, and cooking with 5 Ingredients or Less. I'm adding new posts regularly; you can subscribe by email or RSS feed if you'd like to receive the latest recipes. Bon appétit!

Instant Pot Chicken Soup

December 4, 2017

By Kath Dedon

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Instant Pot Chicken Soup is so easy. We love it and I’ve made it at least three times.

The recipe is from Coco Morante on Elise Bauer’s Simply Recipes blog. This is chicken soup with no noodles or rice, and we don’t miss them! Coco suggests you could cook some noodles separately to add to the soup, but I don’t think that’s necessary. Instant Pot Chicken Soup is a low carb soup and it’s delicious the way it is!

I have a 6-quart Instant Pot and this recipe fills it up quite a bit, not to the Max line, but probably too much. The Max line is really the maximum for doing non-pressure cooking functions, like slow cooking. Guidelines for pressure cooking in any type of pressure cooker say the pot should only be half full for things that expand and might possibly foam, like dried beans or grains. It should only be 2/3 full for everything else, including soup. With the 6-quart Instant Pot, ½ full would be at the 2.5 Liter mark and 2/3 full would be at about the 3.3 Liter mark.

The first two times I made it, I used a natural release. In other words, I just turned the pot off when it was done and waited until the float valve dropped before opening the pot. It took maybe 30 or 40 minutes to drop. That worked great and I didn’t have to worry about the broth “spitting” out of the valve.

When I made it last week, I decided to try Coco’s suggestion to let it release naturally for 15 minutes and then do a quick release. I learned that my pot was too full to do a quick release. When I released the pressure, there was quite a bit of soup that spit out of the pressure valve making a bit of a mess on the counter. The soup was still as delicious as ever, but if I do the full recipe in my 6-quart pot I’ll use a natural release.

This makes a lot of soup. Coco says it is 4 – 6 servings, but I found that it makes at least 6 servings. I may try cutting the recipe in half for just the two of us. We’ll have plenty of soup for dinner and leftovers and I won’t have the sputtering issue if I use the quick release after a 15-minute rest.

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Instant Pot Chicken Soup

 

Instant Pot Chicken Soup

(Adapted from Coco Morante’s recipe on Simply Recipes)

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(print the recipe)

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Prep time: 20 minutes

Time for the Instant Pot to get up to pressure: 30 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

Natural release time: 30 – 40 minutes

Time for cutting up the cooked chicken: 15 minutes

Total time, start to finish: A little over 2 hours, mostly unattended

(If your pot isn’t over 2/3 full and you do a quick release after a 15-minute natural release, the total time will be about an hour and 45 minutes.

 

 

I used a 6-quart Instant Pot. This will work equally well in an 8-quart Instant Pot. Just follow the same timing and cooking procedure. With the same quantity of soup, the 8-quart pot will not be too full and you should be able to do a quick release after a 15-minute natural release.

 

Generously serves 6

 

1 (3-4 pound) chicken, or an equivalent mix of bone in chicken pieces (I used 3.5 pounds of bone-in skin-on chicken thighs.)

 

4 ribs celery, sliced

4 medium carrots, peeled and sliced

½ large yellow onion, peeled and diced

3 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled

A few sprigs fresh flat leaf (Italian) parsley

3 sprigs fresh thyme

4 teaspoons salt

2 quarts water

 

  1. Put the chicken in the pot skin side up.

Chicken thighs

 

.22. Put all of the other ingredients in the pot.

vegetables added

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My pot is clearly too full. It’s at about 4 Liters and the Max should be 3.3 Liters (2/3 full). I should have used the longer natural release to avoid having some soup sputter out of the release valve.

water added

 

3. Put the lid on the pot, and turn the pressure regulator to Sealing. You can use the “Manual” program or the “Soup” program. Select 25 minutes of cooking time.

soup setting.jpg

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4. When the time is up, turn the pot off and let the pressure release naturally.

5. When the float valve has dropped down, open the pot. Remove the chicken pieces to a cutting board. When they are cool enough to handle, remove the skin and bones. Chop the meat into bite-size pieces and return it to the pot.

6. Serve.

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If you don’t have a pressure cooker, you can make it on the stovetop.

Chicken Soup cooked in a pot on the stove

 

Prep time: 20 minutes

Bring to a boil: 15 minutes

Simmer: 1 hour

Time for cutting up the cooked chicken: 15 minutes

Total time from start to finish: A little under 2 hours

 

Put all of the ingredients in a large Dutch oven (or similar pot). Cover, bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 1 hour. Remove the chicken from the pot. When it’s cool enough to handle, remove the skin and bones and chop the meat into bite-size pieces. Return the chicken to the soup and serve.

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Instant Pot Chicken Soup - Copy

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Perfect Instant Pot Hard-Cooked Eggs

November 12, 2017

By Kath Dedon

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After several attempts at making hard-cooked eggs in my Instant Pot, I finally made Perfect Instant Pot Hard-Cooked Eggs!

There is nothing wrong with J.Kenji Lopez-Alt’s method for steaming eggs; I have made many Perfect Hard Cooked Eggs using his method. If I didn’t have an Instant Pot I would definitely continue to steam them.

However, I do have an Instant Pot! So future hard-cooked eggs at Chez Dedon will probably be produced in my Instant Pot now that I’ve figured it out.

If you search the Internet, you’ll find a surprising number of ways to make hard-cooked eggs in an Instant Pot. I tried some of them. 5 minutes of high pressure with 5 minutes of natural release before doing a quick release did not work for me. The yolks were not fully cooked. 8 minutes of high pressure with 5 minutes of natural release worked a bit better, but the yolks still had a small spot that was not quite done.

I found Amy and Jacky’s blog post about cooking eggs in the Instant Pot. They used low pressure and cooked the eggs for 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, and 14 minutes. They posted photos of all of the eggs to show how they turned out. For hard-cooked eggs, the 12-, 13-, and 14-minute eggs looked like they would suit me the best.

Since 13 minutes is the timing I use for steaming eggs, I decided to try that with the Instant Pot. It worked beautifully! I feel like I’m all ready to make deviled eggs for holiday get-togethers!

Update 11/15/17:  

Yesterday I opened a new carton of large eggs and cooked them in the Instant Pot with Low Pressure for 13 minutes. They had a green ring around the yolk indicating that they were overcooked. (See photo at the end of this blog post.)

Today I cooked some more eggs from the same carton with Low Pressure for 12 minutes and they were perfect. Blogger Ron of Lost in a Pot reported in a comment to this post that he cooked perfect eggs using Low Pressure for 12 minutes as well. From now on I will set the timer for 12 minutes. 😉

 

Perfect hard-cooked egg

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Perfect Instant Pot Hard-Cooked Eggs

(Adapted from Amy and Jacky’s recipe on their blog, Pressure Cook Recipes)

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(print the recipe)

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This method calls for using cold tap water and cold large eggs. Using warm water, room-temperature eggs, or eggs that are a different size could affect your results.

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2 – 8 large eggs, cold from the refrigerator

1 cup cold tap water

  1. Put the steamer rack that came with the Instant Pot in the pot. Put the eggs on the rack and pour in the water. Put the lid on and set the steam release handle to Seal.

Eggs in the IP

 

2. Press the Manual button and then press the Pressure button. Use the “-“ button to select Low Pressure. Set the time for 13 minutes 12 minutes.

3. While the eggs are cooking, prepare a bowl of ice water so it’s ready to cool the eggs.

4. When the 12 minutes under pressure are up and the Instant Pot beeps, press the Keep Warm/Cancel button to turn off the IP. Move the steam release handle to Vent for a quick pressure release.

5. Remove the lid. Put the eggs in the ice water to chill for 5 minutes.

Chilling in ice water.jpg

 

5. Refrigerate for future use.

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Perfect hard-cooked egg - Copy

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Photo for the 11/15/17 Update:

The egg on the left was cooked for 13 minutes. The perfect egg on the right was cooked for 12 minutes.

eggs

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Salted Brown Butter Crispy Treats

October 19, 2017

By Kath Dedon

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Sometimes you just need a treat. Deb Perelman’s recipe for Salted Brown Butter Crispy Treats in Smitten Kitchen certainly fills the bill!

According to Wikipedia, Rice Krispies Treats have been around since 1939. The original recipe has just three ingredients: 3 tablespoons of butter, 10 ounces of marshmallows, and 6 cups of Kellogg’s® Rice Krispies® cereal. The recipe is delicious and has endured to the present day.

Deb made just a couple of minor changes that made big changes with her Salted Brown Butter Crispy Treats. She uses a lot more butter (8 ounces, or one stick), she browns the butter, and she adds course sea salt. Believe me; those little changes make all the difference!

I have long enjoyed Deb’s Smitten Kitchen blog; I highly recommend it if you’re not familiar with it. Her Smitten Kitchen Cookbook is an enjoyable read that inspires me to get in the kitchen to try something new. I’m very much looking forward to getting my hands on her new cookbook, Smitten Kitchen Every Day: Triumphant and Unfussy New Favorites. As you can see, I’m a Deb Perelman “groupie”. If she’s new to you, I recommend checking her out.

We’re headed into “sugar season” when special treats are needed for the various holiday activities and get-togethers. This recipe for Salted Brown Butter Crispy Treats is easy to make and a real crowd-pleaser. Give it a try and see if you don’t agree!

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Salted Brown Butter Crispy Treats.jpg

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Salted Brown Butter Crispy Treats

(Adapted from Deb Perelman’s recipe in Smitten Kitchen)

 

Kellogg’s no longer makes gluten-free Rice Krispies. If you can find a certified gluten-free brand of rice crispies, you can make these treats gluten-free. 

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(print the recipe)

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Makes 16 (2-inch) squares or 24 (2 x 1.3-inch) squares (I like to cut desserts smaller when serving at a party with other desserts. People are more likely to take a smaller taste.)

 

*I found that I did not have unsalted butter when it was time to make the treats. I used Kerrygold salted butter and then cut the added sea salt in half. It worked fine.

 

4 ounces (113 grams, or one stick) unsalted butter, plus extra for the pan* (See note above about the butter.)

1 10-ounce bag marshmallows (I used miniature.)

Heaping ¼ teaspoon coarse sea salt (Use heaping 1/8 teaspoon if you use salted butter.)

6 cups (160 grams) crispy rice cereal (about half a 12-ounce box)

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1 stick Kerrygold butter

 

160 grams

 

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  1. Grease an 8-inch square pan with butter or oil
  2. In a large pot (I used my 8-quart Dutch oven) melt the butter over medium-low heat. It melts, foams, turns clear, and then starts to brown. Stir frequently scraping up the brown bits. Watch carefully so it doesn’t burn.

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Cut the butter into smaller pieces so it melts more quickly

Melting butter

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3. When the butter is browned, turn off the heat and stir in the marshmallows. Stir until the marshmallows are totally melted and blended into the butter. (Turn the heat on low if the marshmallows aren’t melting. I didn’t need to do that with miniature marshmallows.)

4. Add the crispy rice and salt and stir until it’s all blended. Put the mixture in the prepared pan and press down. It’s easiest to use a piece of waxed or parchment paper sprayed with oil to press on the cereal.

Use waxed paper

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Done

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5. After the treats have cooled, but them into the desired size. (I cut them into 12 squares and then cut each one in half to make 24 treats.)

6. Store in an airtight container until ready to serve.

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Rice Crispy Treats

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Rice Crispy Treats 2

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Rice Crispy Treats - Copy

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Warm Spinach and Beet Salad with Bacon Dressing

October 13, 2017

By Kath Dedon

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Warm Spinach and Beet Salad with Bacon Dressing is a winner! I was looking for something different to do with the beautiful yellow beets I bought and found Jasper White’s recipe in Jasper White’s Cooking from New England.

The recipe says it serves 4 – 6. I halved it, and it made 2 generous servings. We also had chorizo sausage, but, honestly, the best part of the meal was this salad. I will definitely make again.

Without further ado, here is my take on Warm Spinach and Beet Salad with Bacon Dressing!

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Warm Spinach and Beet Salad with Bacon Dressing (and sausage)

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Warm Spinach and Beet Salad with Bacon Dressing

(Adapted from a recipe in Jasper White’s Cooking from New England)

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(print the recipe))

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My 3 medium yellow beets weighed about 9 ounces, total, with the greens and roots trimmed.

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Serves 2

2 – 3 medium beets (6 – 9 ounces total)

8 ounces baby spinach

2 slices thick bacon, cut in half lengthwise and then into small pieces

1½ teaspoons oil

½ medium onion, cut into medium (½ inch) dice

1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar

Serve with Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to season to taste

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  1. Peel the beets and cut them into ½-inch sticks. Bring a pot of water to a boil. When it’s boiling, add a spoonful of salt and the beets. Boil until tender, about 8 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water.
  2. Cook the bacon in a large skillet until it’s starting to get crisp.

IMG_1469

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3. Add the oil and the onion and cook for a couple of minutes, just until the onion is starting to get tender.

Onions added

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4. Add the vinegar and the beets and cook, stirring, for just a minute or so.

beets added

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5. Add the spinach and toss it with the other ingredients until it just starts to wilt. (Mr. White says, “Move very fast or you will have a cooked vegetable, not a salad.”)

Spinach added

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6. Serve with salt and black pepper to season to taste.

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Two sausages for Bob 

Warm Spinach and Beet Salad with Bacon Dressing

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Tall Warm Spinach and Beet Salad

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Lemongrass Pork Patties with Vietnamese Dipping Sauce

September 13, 2017

By Kath Dedon

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Laura emailed me this recipe the other day saying that she and Byron had enjoyed it at least a couple of times. It looked terrific, so I wasted no time before giving it a try.

Lemongrass Pork Patties with Vietnamese Dipping Sauce is an epicurious recipe developed by Kristin Donnelly. It’s really easy to make!

I made it exactly as written except I substituted Swerve sweetener for the sugar. Swerve measures the same as sugar so it’s an easy substitution. Bob and I both declared that this recipe is a winner. I can attest that leftover patties are delicious reheated in a microwave oven, even without the dipping sauce.

Laura said they had made it as is, but they subbed Truvia for the sugar. They also made it into a salad one night. They tore up the lettuce, cut the patties into smaller pieces, and used the dipping sauce for the dressing. I love that idea!

Get the amazing flavors of Vietnamese cuisine in your own kitchen with these Lemongrass Pork Patties with Vietnamese Dipping Sauce! Delicious!

 

Wrap a pork patty in a lettuce leaf and dip in the sauce!

Lemongrass Pork Patties with Vietnamese Dipping Sauce

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Lemongrass Pork Patties with Vietnamese Dipping Sauce

(Adapted from an epicurious.com recipe by Kristin Donnelly)

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(print the recipe)

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Serves 3 – 4 (3 patties were enough for me; Bob was happy with 4)

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To me the patties were just a wee bit salty. If you are salt-sensitive, you might want to reduce the kosher salt a bit, but use all of the fish sauce. It’s an important ingredient in Vietnamese cooking and it adds “umami” to the dish. You can substitute Swerve or Truvia for the sugar.

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For the patties

1 pound ground pork

3 large cloves garlic, minced (about 2 tablespoons0

¼ cup thinly sliced green onions (3-4 onions)

1 stalk lemongrass, tough outer layers removed, lower 6 inches of tender bulb finely chopped

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger

1½ teaspoons fish sauce

1½ teaspoons sugar (or Swerve or Truvia)

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

¾ teaspoon kosher salt (don’t use ¾ tsp table salt; substitute ½ tsp.)

 

For serving

12 lettuce leaves, like Boston or iceberg

Herb sprigs, such as mint, cilantro and Thai basil (optional, I didn’t use)

 

 

  1. Put everything for the patties, except the pork, in a bowl and stir.

Ready to mix with pork.jpg

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2. Add the ground pork and mix until well combined. Form the pork into 12 patties (about ¾-inch thick) and put them on a plate or, as I did, on a small foil-lined baking sheet.

3. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, until firm.

Ready to grill

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4. Preheat a grill for 10 minutes. (You know your grill; grease the grill grate if you usually need to do that. I don’t find it necessary with my grill.)

5. Grill the patties for 3-4 minutes on one side. Turn and grill for 4 minutes longer.

6. Serve with lettuce leaves to wrap around the patties and the dipping sauce.

 

Dipping Sauce

1½ tablespoons rice vinegar

1 tablespoon sugar (or Swerve or Truvia)

¼ cup water

1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon fish sauce

Pinch of crushed red pepper

 

  1. Whisk the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl. Pour into 4 small bowls for serving.

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Lemongrass Pork Patties with Vietnamese Dipping Sauce - Copy

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Pork Chops à la Julia with Montreal Steak Seasoning

September 6, 2017

By Kath Dedon

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Pork Chops à la Julia has been my go-to pork chops recipe for years. It’s from Julia Child’s The Way to Cook. I recently tried one small change that took the pork chops to a whole new delicious level.

What did I do? I simply used McCormick Grill Mates 25% Less Sodium Montreal Steak Seasoning instead of salt and pepper. My, oh, my! What a difference! The pork chops were so flavorful and Bob and I both loved them. I prefer to use the reduced sodium version since I give the meat a generous sprinkling of the seasoning.

I highly recommend that you give this a try. Pork Chops à la Julia with Montreal Steak Seasoning is a super entrée for a quick meal.

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Pork Chops served with homegrown green beans

Pork Chops à la Julia with Montreal Steak Seasoning

(Adapted from Julia Child’s recipe in The Way to Cook)

(print the recipe)

 

Serves 2 (easily doubles to serve 4)

pork chops, ¾ – 1 inch thick (either bone-in or boneless)

1 Tablespoon olive oil

McCormick Grill Mates 25% Less Sodium Montreal Steak Seasoning

1/3 cup Vermouth or chicken broth (I used Vermouth.)

  1. If there is a lot of excess fat, trim it off. (My pork chops were already well-trimmed.)

2. Let the pork chops sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes. When ready to cook, pat them dry with paper towels.

3. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a small skillet that is just large enough to hold the chops.

4. Generously sprinkle the Montreal Steak Seasoning on both sides of the pork chops. Put the chops in the hot skillet

5.  Cook for 4 minutes.  Turn the pork chops over.

6. Cook for 3 more minutes.

7. Remove the pork chops to a warm plate and cover with foil.

8. Add the vermouth or chicken broth to the pan. Turn the heat up and cook, stirring, until the sauce reduces and thickens a bit.

9. Serve the pork chops with some of the pan sauce.

Easy Gluten-Free Peach Crisp

August 22, 2017

By Kath Dedon

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This Easy Gluten-Free Peach Crisp is an adaptation of Elana Amsterdam’s Paleo Peach Crisp on her Elana’s Pantry blog. She bakes her crisp in an 8 x 8 inch baking dish.

I cut the recipe in half and baked it in my cute little 6-inch pie dish. It was a perfect little dessert to make for two people. For us, it actually makes 3 – 4 servings so we enjoyed dessert one night and had a bit left over for the next day. (Peach Crisp for breakfast, anyone?)

Elana uses maple syrup, which is an approved sweetener for Paleo desserts, but I wanted to try sweetening it with Swerve. Swerve is an erythritol- and oligosaccharides- based sweetener.  I have only tried it for a couple of things, but I have been pleased with the results. It measures the same as sugar, cup for cup, so it’s easy to substitute it in recipes.

Bob and I both loved this Easy Gluten-Free Peach Crisp! Give it a try while great summer peaches are still in season.

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Peach Crisp cooling

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Easy Gluten-Free Peach Crisp

(Adapted from Elana Amsterdam’s recipe on her Elana’s Pantry blog)

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(print the recipe)

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I used Swerve to sweeten the crisp topping. Swerve measures the same as sugar. Substitute an equal amount of maple syrup if you wish. Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour is available at my Costco.

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Serves 3 – 4    (Can be doubled to serve 6 – 8. See instructions following this recipe.)

1 pound peaches (about 3 medium peaches), peeled and sliced*

½ cup + 2 tablespoons blanched almond flour (not almond meal)

A couple of dashes of salt (if doubling the recipe, use 1/8 teaspoon)

1 tablespoon butter

1½ teaspoons Swerve (or maple syrup)

¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

 

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Put a rimmed baking sheet on a rack in the middle position. (The baking sheet will catch any drips from the peach crisp.)
  2. Arrange the peach slices in a 6-inch pie plate, or another baking dish that has a capacity of about 3 cups.

 

Beautiful peaches from Metropolitan Market’s “Peachorama”

Peaches

Peaches 2 - Copy

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3. Combine the flour and salt in a food processor (My mini food processor worked great.)

4. Add the butter, Swerve, and vanilla and pulse so it’s all blended.

5. Sprinkle the crisp topping over the peaches.

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Ready for the oven

Ready for the oven

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6. Bake for 30 minutes. Set on a wire rack to cool.

Paleo Peach Crisp

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*Peeling the peaches:

I have a serrated peeler that works great on peaches (and tomatoes). Before I got one, I used this method to easily peel peaches:

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the peaches and boil for 1 minute. Remove them from the water immediately. Remove the skin from the peaches, and slice.

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Double the recipe to serve 6 – 8

Bake it in an 8 x 8 inch square dish (or any baking dish that holds about 6 cups) for about 35 – 40 minutes.

Use the same method with these ingredients:

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2 pounds peaches (about 6 medium), peeled and sliced

1¼ cups blanched almond flour (not almond meal)

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon Swerve (or maple syrup)

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

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Peach Crisp cooling - Copy

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