Toasted Cumin Dressing

Updated Hamburger Salad

Updated Hamburger Salad

Removing so many things from my diet at one time was a challenge. It still can be some days. I cooked very simply for the first month. Salt and olive oil were my best friends in the kitchen that month with the help of a few other spices and herbs. Once I got used to what I could have and couldn’t have, my creativity took over.

I decided to make my Hamburger Salad with some tweaks to make it yeast-free and egg-free. Instead of mixing egg and the seasoning into the ground beef, I formed plain patties and seasoned the outside with salt and ground cumin. I omitted the mushrooms and sprouts, just using caramelized onions on top. I added diced jicama and a shredded carrot to the romaine heart and tossed. I garnished with the diced tomato and a diced avocado.

The dressing really made the salad for me. I played on my used of cumin for the hamburger and toasted cumin seeds for the dressing. Instead of using a vinegar as my acid, I used fresh lemon juice. I use mostly lemon juice because between the adrenal fatigue and everything else going on in the last few months, lemon seems to be what I can tolerate in small doses. I do use the occasional lime. I used an orange last week for the first time in months.

Dressings are based on a foundation of ratios between acids and oils. Once you have the basics down you can add anything to it to make it interesting and fun. This is one of those times where you absolutely should be playing with your food.Cumin Dressing

Toasted Cumin Dressing

2 teaspoons cumin seeds

juice of half a lemon (approximately 2 tablespoons)

olive oil


Heat a small dry pan over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and dry toast until fragrant. Remove from heat and let cool. Once cool, add to a spice/coffee grinder and grind the seeds coarsely. Juice the lemon into a glass measuring cup and remove the seeds. Add olive oil to the 1/2 cup line. Add toasted cumin and salt (to taste) and whisk until it emulsifies.

This post is linked to Whole Food Fridays at Allergy-Free Alaska. 

Garlicky Sweet Potato Fries

Garlicky Sweet Potato Fries

I fell in love with Sweet Potato Fries years ago when we did the South Beach Diet.  Chaz bought some Alexia brand sweet potato fries one night to go with a veggie burger and it was never the same in our home again.  There are times when I do want good regular gf fries.  Preferably from a restaurant.  It’s hard to find good fries at a restaurant that I can actually eat so it’s rare that I have them.  If I’m making them, it’s always sweet potato fries.  There is just so much more flavor.  And beta carotene.  And complex carbs.  And dietary fiber, Vitamin C, and Vitamin B6.  Wow.  All that packed into a sweet potato!

I was in the middle of cutting the fries on Tuesday and I decided I wanted some garlicky fries.  Have I mentioned I love garlic, too?  The more, the better sometimes.  It was my favorite part of dinner Tuesday, which was also gluten-free hot dogs on Udi’s gf hot dog buns, and raw veg (celery, radishes, and carrots) with a cilantro lime dipping sauce (that needs serious tweaking before sharing with you).

Garlicky Sweet Potato Fries (serves 4)

2 medium to large sweet potatoes, cut into fries

4 garlic cloves

1 teaspoon cumin (or more or less)



grapeseed oil (or other oil of your choice)

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped fine

Lay out the sweet potato fries on a baking sheet and preheat oven to 350.  Press garlic out through a garlic press over the fries and mix together.  If you don’t have a garlic press, mince the garlic well and then mix in with the fries.  Add cumin, salt, pepper, and oil and mix again.  Make sure fries are spread evenly.  Bake for at least 30 minutes.  You might need longer if you like your fries more done.  Let cool for a few minutes and sprinkle cilantro over the fries.  Toss together if needed to distribute the cilantro.

This post is linked to Seasonal Sunday and Slightly Indulgent Tuesday.