Gluten and Dairy Free Easter Menu: Easy and Elegant

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If you haven't already planned your Easter menu, here are some easy and
delicious options for a completely gluten and dairy free Easter meal.
Ham, potatoes, and asparagus are traditional fare, but I've added a
little twist to each for added flavor without much fuss.

The
butter lamb was always a tradition in our household, so not to be
deprived, I simply made my own dairy-free version using Earth Balance
and a lamb butter mold. Voila!

Easter Menu
Spinach Salad with Strawberries and Poppy Seed Dressing
Quinoa "Buttermilk" Biscuits
Ham with Brown Sugar Rum Glaze
Whipped Potatoes with Herbs
Roasted Asparagus
Scalloped Pineapple
Carrot Cake

Spinach Salad with Strawberries and Poppy Seed Dressing

1 10 oz. bag of baby spinach (washed and dried)
1 pint of strawberries (sliced)
Toasted pecans
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp poppy seeds
1 tsp paprika

Toss
spinach with strawberries and toasted pecans in a large bowl. For
dressing, mix olive oil, vinegar, sugar, poppy seeds, and paprika in a
cruet. Shake and refrigerate until ready to serve. 

Quinoa "Buttermilk" Drop Biscuits

Since these biscuits are
dairy free, they do not actually contain buttermilk. Instead, a small
amount of vinegar is added to soy milk, to achieve a taste similar to
buttermilk.

2 cups gluten-free flour (1 cup quinoa, 1/2 cup millet, 1/2 cup sorghum)
1 tbsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup Earth Balance vegan shortening
1 cup soy milk + 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar (let stand 5 minutes before using)

Preheat
oven to 450 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking
soda, and salt. Cut in Earth Balance shortening until mixture is
crumbly. Make a well in the center of the mixture and add in the milk.
Using a fork, stir just until moistened. Drop dough onto greased baking
sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden.

Ham with Brown Sugar Rum Glaze

There are several brands on
the market that make gluten free hams. Hormel, Smithfield, Applegate
Farms, Honeybaked, and Hillshire Farms are just a few. You do need to be
careful with the pre-made glaze packets that come with the ham, since
these may often contain gluten. I prefer to make my own glaze, adding a
little Jamaican Rum for an unexpected kick!

Gluten Free Bone-in or Boneless Ham
1/2 cup brown sugar
Juice of 1 orange
Zest of 1 orange
2 tbsp Appleton Jamaican Rum
1 tbsp French's Spicy Brown Mustard

Follow
package instructions for cooking ham. For glaze, add rum, brown sugar,
and orange juice to a medium saucepan over low heat. Bring to a low
boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Reduce heat and stir in the
mustard. Add orange zest and remove from heat to cool slightly. Drizzle
over cooked ham.

Whipped Potatoes with Herbs

10 large Russet potatoes (washed, peeled, and cut into chunks)
1/3 cup gluten free vegetable stock (Pacific foods is gluten free)
4 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp Hellman's mayonnaise
1 tsp dried parsley
1 clove garlic
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp pepper
few sprigs fresh thyme

Boil
potatoes until fork tender. Drain and return to large stockpot. Add
olive oil, vegetable stock, and mayonnaise to pot with potatoes. Using a
potato masher, mash until ingredients are combined and potatoes are
somewhat creamy. Add parsley, garlic, salt, pepper, and thyme to mashed
potato mixture. Using a hand mixer, whip potato mixture on medium speed
for 30 seconds until fluffy.  Garnish with a few sprigs of fresh thyme.

Roasted Asparagus
1 bunch asparagus
1 tbsp olive oil
sea salt
black pepper

Preheat
oven to 400 degrees. Rinse and pat dry fresh asparagus. Cut off bottom
tips, which can be tough, and place on baking sheet lined with parchment
paper. Drizzle olive oil over asparagus and season with sea salt and
black pepper. Bake 8-10 minutes or until asparagus in slightly crisp
tender.

Scalloped Pineapple

4 cups gluten free bread, broken into chunks (Breadsmith's gluten free white bread is perfect for this dish)
1/2 cup Earth Balance vegan shortening, melted
1 20 oz. can of crushed pineapple
1 cup sugar
3 eggs, beaten
1 cup vanilla flavored almond milk (Soy or Rice milk can be used as well)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Combine bread, sugar, earth balance, and
eggs. Add pineapple and almond milk and pour into greased baking dish.
Bake for 45-50 minutes or until top appears golden.

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