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Friday Eye Candy: Farmers' Market

Friday Eye Candy Farmers' Market Strawberries
Organic strawberries make gluten-free luscious and beautiful.

I have been sitting here in my chair, as bone quiet still as a nun in a pew at midnight, with nary a poetic turn of phrase in sight. I am trying to conjure words for strawberries. And summer. And the newly minted sensation of actually, finally, living by the sea. I keep thinking about breathing- because the ionized ocean air is so sexy gorgeous you could eat it with a spoon. And because for the first time in a long, long time I can feel myself uncoil a bit and allow a long, soft exhale to trail into the stream of salty wind that whistles through the crack of an open window above my bed as I blink awake to the whoop of a sunrise surfer ripping his way down a foamy curl. His joy is infectious. And I smile. And yawn.

The word gratitude comes to mind.

Not to mention, abundance. This week's farmers market was indeed abundant, tumbling wild with the jewels of summer. Boxes and boxes of fragrant strawberries. Buckets of cherries. Crates of plums. Potted herbs and June blooms- peonies and Japanese iris. So I offer you eye candy today. The gift of color. And ten gluten-free strawberry recipes to inspire your weekend and get you in the mood to whoop.

It's summer. Live a little. Get juicy.







Ten gluten-free recipes bursting with strawberries:



Eye candy from Redondo Beach farmers market...

Fresh market summer plums
Plums at the farmers market here in Redondo Beach. Eye candy, indeed.

I love the blue frosted sheen on fresh plums. It makes me want to dig out my paintbrushes and rustle up some toothy primed canvas. Although I usually paint abstracts, I am tempted by such voluptuous summer produce to paint bowls and bunches of berries and stone fruit, and the lively greens of tender garden herbs.


 Redondo Beach strawberries and flowers at the farmers market
Strawberries, iris, and a peek at my daily walking path on Redondo Beach.

The red of California strawberries is astonishing. Ruby shoes red, and sassy. You can almost taste the juicy sweetness just by looking at them.

Blue iris have been a favorite perennial for all of my adult life. From newlywed naïveté, through motherhood, and a second marriage, I have planted iris in every garden I have dug and tilled.

Now I find myself without a garden.

But I do have a camera.

The shot of Redondo Beach shows you my daily walking path (the strand to the right). One morning the sky was almost black to the east, and snaking clouds tumbled toward the water, casting long blue shadows. I took this with my iPhone.




Farmers market cherries
Ripe cherries at the Redondo Beach farmers market.

I am so tempted by these buckets of cherries to try making a gluten-free clafouti. Perhaps next week. Have any of you made a g-free clafouti?


Polish artist Danuta Rothschild shopping at  farmers market and sweet peppers
Sweet baby peppers, my beautiful friend Danuta, and potted herbs.

And last, but never least, three pics I took while shopping the market with my talented gal pal, Denuta. She is an amazing artist from Poland, and I hope to share with you some of her work, soon. Lovely, lovely stuff.

In the upper left, a glimpse into a bag of baby sweet peppers that Danuta bought. We thought they were hot peppers when we first walked by the table, but learned quickly that they were tiny bell peppers, as sweet as could be.

To the right is- you guessed it- my friend Danuta, choosing some organic apples (for a lunchtime salad). Below are flats of herbs for only $1.50 a pot, making me wish I had a garden bed to plant. For now, bags of fresh snipped herbs will have to suffice. Although I am pondering pots. Big clay pots.

Though I need to investigate the salt wind factor. Our apartment balcony faces the water, and it sometimes gets windy. I mean, blow your socks off windy. I learned this the hard way. The first night here, I left chair cushions on the two Ikea chairs perched on the balcony. An aggressive gust of wind sent a cushion airborne, spinning down the street like a kite on Ecstasy. Lucky for me our neighbor below spotted the runaway flying past her window, and retrieved it from the street.

I'll have to bring her some strawberry muffins.


TRENDING

Gluten-Free Shepherd's Pie Two Ways (one vegan)

For today's menu? Gluten-Free Shepherd's Pie Two Ways (one vegan). A frigid wind is rolling through, interrupting our whisper of solar warmth with bracing bursts of frosty cold. But the skies are clear and cobalt blue, nudging out the low wooly gray of yesterday. Still, it's the kind of day that calls for comfort in the form of food. Something baked in a crock. Something piping hot and old fashioned. Something with mashed potatoes. A savory pie, I said out loud, standing at the window watching our pair of cardinals and chickadees take turns at the feeder stocked with black oil sunflower seeds. Don't tease me, said my husband from his corner study, looking up, I imagine, from his latest screenplay effort. I wouldn't joke about a thing like pie, I assured him. I'm thinking- a shepherd's pie, I said. More to myself than him. But not the usual shepherd's pie. No lamb. No beef. No onion. No peas, I murmured. Please, he said. No peas. (His hearing is ex

Gluten-Free Goddess Banana Nut Bread Recipe

Banana bread for the rest of us. No apologies needed.  Out there in the cold cruel world, Darling, some folks apparently (still) view our gluten-free lifestyle through a jaded foodie lens, believing, first of all, that gluten-free anything is never going to taste anything but awful, and second, that this whole gluten-free trend (their word not mine) is a fad not worthy of serious consideration, appreciation and compassion. Apart from the standard (and brief) lip service that non-afflicted food writers, bloggers and journalists pay to celiac disease, adhering to the medical treatment that is a gluten-free diet is degraded- for that sexy topical hook- to a "bandwagon". An eating disorder. A diet by choice. They dub it a controversy. Two food bloggers referenced the gluten-free diet on a social networking site recently, bragging about their "iron stomachs" and their ability to chow down on everything, implying that those of us unable to ingest gluten merely have &

Gluten-Free Fudge Brownies - Our New Favorite Recipe

Our go-to brownie recipe- for years- was this fabulous Dark Chocolate Brownie Recipe , created back in the early, innocent gluten-free days of 2006. And it has never failed us. We must have baked hundreds of these brownies. I'm so not kidding. So why mess around and experiment with success, you might, quite logically, ask? Well. I cannot come up with a definitive philosophy behind my impulse to try something new. All I can say is, It's my nature. And that's good news for brownie lovers everywhere. Because these fudgy-good gems are easy to make. No xanthan gum or weird ingredients. Just rich chocolate goodness. What better way to ring in a New Year? So go. Get fudgy. Peace - Love - Chocolate, Karina xo

Snow Day Cake with Blueberries

Last night's winter storm crept in overnight, waking me in the pitch black dark of 4 AM with its silence, its ten-inch thick blanket of fresh fallen snow. Magic like that can wake you up out of a sound sleep. After padding around to the windows to see if flakes were still drifting down and downy, sticking to the bird-feeders in impossibly high heaps, I couldn't get back to sleep, so I preheated the oven and baked us a tea cake for breakfast.  It's a simple muffin style cake studded on the top with blueberries. I know. I know. Blueberries? In January. Well. Yeah. Because January. Because snowstorm. And honestly, who doesn't crave blueberries all year round? Why should they be relegated only to summer recipes?  That's why The Goddess invented frozen blueberries. For snow days. And recipes like this one.  Stay cozy wherever you are, and stay safe. Bake a cake.  Add a little sweetness to your weekend. Karina xo

New Chocolate Muffins for Winter 2022

Facing the Winter of 2022 takes a dash of courage. A pinch of patience (well, way more than a pinch!). And a hopeful refresh of your favorite treat go-tos. In other words. HERE WE GO AGAIN. Bring on the chocolate. So with that in mind, my beloveds. This is my latest version of a chocolate breakfast treat- a gluten-free muffin with options. If you need a sweet- but not too sweet- lure to start your day, these cocoa infused beauties might be just the ticket. If- like me- you may need a little extra deliciousness, especially on a gloomy day, you can add in (like I did, I confess) extras. Like, dark chocolate chips. And walnuts or pecans. It's up to you how much indulgence you need to get you through. We don't judge. The added bonus? Your kitchen will smell like a bakery. Like a chocolate hug. Like... love, maybe. Because the secret ingredient is always LOVE. Put love in your baking and your day is sure to be brighter. And more delicious. Love yourself. Take care of your Someone Sp

Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas

Fabulous Chicken Enchiladas- worthy of a game day get-together. Yummy. Easy. Chicken enchiladas. I never tire of them. And I'm not alone. My chicken enchilada recipes are among the most popular recipes on the blog. It's understandable. Enchiladas make a perfect make-ahead recipe for a weeknight supper, football Sunday, or a pot luck gathering. And they are (easily) gluten-free.  Make enchiladas earlier in the day- in this handsome ceramic baking pan , if you like. Half time nosh is done. Serve with this longtime family favorite-   Joey's Rockin' Guac   and tortilla chips. As easy as uno, dos, tres. Stay safe out there! Karina xo

Butternut Chili Spicy 'n Sweet

A New Year's bowl of comfort for 2022. Sweet 'n spicy chili with a dash of lime. New Year's Day is almost upon us. Rather than wax nostalgic about the bumpy ride of the year we've had, I'd rather post a simple home cooked recipe I know you'll love.  Making a pot of bean soup or legume heavy chili to welcome in a freshly minted year is a tradition as old as the hills. From Italian Pasta Fagioli to homestyle southern Hoppin' John , beans somehow acquired the favorable reputation of attracting good luck.  Why? I haven't a clue. But I do know this.  Beans paired with cubes of winter squash make for one sweet and tasty chili. That, Dear Reader, you can take to the bank. Wishing you all good luck, good health and lots of love in 2022. Karina xo