Happy Fathers’ Day

Since my Dad and I are living together and I, like most college students, am perpetually broke I decided to honor Fathers’ Day in the only way I know how: through food. I’m still a stranger in this kitchen and we have very few dishes, pots and pans, but I intended to be creative and try some new (and completely gluten-free) recipes regardless. Here’s what we ended up with:

Cauliflower Macaroni and Cheese

1 head cauliflower
1 cup milk (I used skim)
1/4 cup cream cheese
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (I combined whatever cheeses we had in the refrigerator, so we ended up with swiss and cheddar)
1/4 cup light sour cream
1/4 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste
melted butter
2/3 cup crushed rice Chex (they’re a wonderful, gluten-free stand in for bread crumbs)
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup fresh grated parmesan

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Cut cauliflower into small pieces (florets and stems) and place in a pan.
Roast cauliflower for 15-20 minutes, until the edges are golden and it is easily pierced with a fork.
While cauliflower is roasting, fill a saucepan with the milk, cream cheese and shredded cheddar. Heat on low heat.
Slowly whisk the cheese as it melts until sauce is well mixed. Add sour cream to thicken. Stir in garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste.
Remove roasted cauliflower from oven and pour cheese sauce over cauliflower. Mix evenly.
Combine melted butter, breadcrumbs, parsley and parmesan. Spread over the cauliflower.
Roast uncovered in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until crumbs are golden brown and cheese is bubbling.

Gluten-Free Cherry Pound Cake

2 ¼ cups gluten-free flour, use divided* (I used Hodgson Mill Baking Flour, it worked very well)
½ teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt?
1½ teaspoons baking powder
?1½ cups granulated sugar?
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
?8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature?
1½ teaspoons vanilla?4 large eggs, at room temperature?
¾ cup maraschino cherries, drained (juice reserved), chopped and dried?

1½ cups confectioner’s sugar
?2 tablespoons reserved maraschino cherry juice?
1-2 tablespoons milk

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a 10 inch bundt pan well with gluten-free non-stick cooking spray.
In a mixing bowl whisk together 2 cups flour, the baking powder and the salt until well combined.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the sugar, butter, cream cheese and vanilla together on medium high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Turn the mixer to low and gradually add the flour mixture, mix just until combined. Combine the cherries with the remaining ¼ cup flour and toss to coat. Add the cherries and flour to the batter and fold in with a spatula. Slowly put the batter in the prepared pan and smooth the top.
Bake for 1 hour 20 – 30 minutes or until the cake is lightly browned, springy to the touch and a tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes then remove to a wire rack to finish cooling.
Combine the confectioner’s sugar with the maraschino cherry juice. Add the milk, a little at a time until it reaches a thick but pour able consistency. Spoon the glaze over the cooled cake.

Makes 10 – 12 gluten-free servings.

My stomach has been doing really poorly lately, so a few bites of our celebratory dinner and dessert were all I could manage. What I had was excellent though – this may be the best cake I have ever made, gluten-free of other wise.

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