Friday, April 18, 2008

'Go Ahead Honey its Gluten Free!" - April - Finger Food



This post is my submission for the gluten free food event, 'Go Ahead Honey its Gluten Free!', hosted this month by the inimitable Sheltie Girl of Gluten a Go Go. Her theme for the month is finger food and I felt rather excited, when she told me because it felt so open and inclusive - we can all eat with our fingers right?

Now some ungenerous folks might be tempted to mention that most food is finger food to me. See, I like to feel my food, lick my fingers - I like little morsels that you can pick up and pop in without too much fuss. This is partially the result of being raised by someone who only eats with a fork. I really don't bother too much with a knife myself as a result and prefer to return my fork to its comfortable place in my right hand after cutting only the toughest foods up. Sounds slightly backward? Actually, I would say I have developed a kind of skill that renders it just, well, me-ish (yes I know that's not a word - look I didn't go to school ok?). Yes, I do sometimes feel uncomfortable at fancy dinners with rows of cutlery that disappear in to the horizon. But I usually let that go pretty quick and just get on with being me.

One time, in my previous life as a children's wear designer, I was sat at the huge communal lunch table, surrounded by skinny girls making short work of their single rice cake smeared with marmite. I of course was eating something home made and wholesome, with a fork. The director who had condescended to sit and eat with us turned to me after a while and remarked on how fashionable my single utensil approach to eating was. She went on to remark on the fact that in some of the more agonisingly hip restaurants you were only offered a fork and a frosty smile and left to get on with it as best you could. I simply smiled knowingly as though my knifeless-ness was entirely due to having my finger so directly on the pulse.

Unfortunately, I got pregnant soon after that and she found me drooling unconscious over my desk during the first exhausting trimester and my brief sojourn at the top was over.

Finley is also a huge fan of finger foods, and the licking of plates - which we do when Nick is not here (sorry Nick). Yes, Fin is so achingly hip that he is testing the limits of our capacity to eat food unaided by utensil in a selfless attempt to bring us new heights to aspire to in the modish world of cutlery.

This is not a fancy recipe, and indeed it came originally from the inspiring and just gosh darn huge hearted, Carol of Simply Gluten Free. What I love about it, is that I can get up in the morning, whack a few crepes in a pan, stick whatever we have in the fridge inside them and Fin has lunch. Because, let me tell you, finding a lunch item that is free from any of the traditional grain rich staples we usually turn to, is no mean feat. And of course, these are eaten with the fingers - any attempt to use cutlery will leave you with an unrolled mess on your hands.

The crepes are simple. I do them mostly just like Carol.


Egg Crepes

1 large organic egg
1 tbs water
1 pinch sea salt

Whisk it all together and pour in a very thin layer into a heated smallish, oiled, crepe pan. Mine is 8in. It's best to do the pouring from one side of the pan as you tilt it, swirl the egg round and dribble in a little more to fill any holes. When it starts to look golden brown around the edges (a minute tops), peel one up and either just flip with your fingers, or a spatula and cook for another 30 seconds.

I large egg makes three small crepes if you are careful.

The only alteration I make to the original recipe is that sometimes I stir in a table spoon or so of finely ground nuts and another teaspoon of water. My favourite is hazelnut - it's really nice with avocado or tuna and some rocket. You could use any nut flour you like though - I've even used coconut flour to eat with banana slices and hot honey sauce. Still makes about 3 pancakes although you can stretch it to four.

For fillings, well use your imagination. Anything you would put in a tortilla flour wrap, or a pancake roll would work here. The key is to keep the quantity small, so you don't break the more fragile egg crepe as you roll it. Then just roll it up however you like.



Here are some of our favourites,


Prawns, carrot shreds and homemade pesto.

Tuna mayonnaise, cucumber shreds and gem lettuce.

Egg mayonnaise, cherry tomatoes and gem lettuce.

Roast chicken, avocado and rocket with mayo.

Banana and nut butter or honey and sometimes homemade yogurt.

Mini meatballs with homemade pesto and gem lettuce......

Really, the sky is the limit - I guess the hazelnut ones would be pretty amazing smeared with chocolate spread too, but we're not treading that path just now and the other stuff tastes so full of life that it's hard to regret anything really.



If you'd like to take part in this event, post your submission on your own blog before the 25th April, send a link and photo to Sheltie Girl by following this link to Gluten a Go Go and check out her site for the round up at the end of the month. Anyone who would like to host a month let me know.