Amanda Gershman, an elementary school teacher and a blogger at theglutenfreewifey.com, lives in White Plains but grew up on Long Island and returns often to her childhood home in Baldwin to cook with her family.
What set you on the path to gluten-free cooking?
I was always into watching the Food Network and cooking shows when I was younger, but I definitely got my start cooking when I met my husband. Because he has celiac disease, he was gluten-free. I didn't really know what that was, so I did a lot of research and exploring to learn the craft of gluten-free cooking for him, wanting to cook different recipes every night. I'd take recipes that my parents had cooked for me as a kid and transform them to be gluten-free. When we'd go to a restaurant, I'd try dishes and think of ways to make them at home so he could enjoy gluten-free versions.
What are some of the things you have learned?
I knew that flour and bread products have gluten, but I didn't know that items like soy sauce, broth and soups can have gluten, although they don't always. More and more, however, manufacturers are putting gluten-free labels on their products so we can know for sure. So that's great. In general, the market has changed for the better. You can go into a supermarket now and find so many gluten-free products. I get my gluten-free panko at Whole Foods, but you can find it at Stop & Shop or Waldbaum's. So many things I used to cook with as a non-gluten-free cook, I can find in the gluten-free aisles.
What prompted you to start your blog?
After I had been posting photos on Instagram, friends and family started to urge me to share my recipes online. My style is really simple, easy and quick, but first and foremost it's gluten-free. So people looking for gluten-free recipes know that everything I post is safe for anyone with any kind of gluten allergy or intolerance. I try to make dinners that I think would work for adults, teenagers, kids, food that isn't so elaborate that people will be scared to cook it and everyone will enjoy it.
What would you serve as a side dish with this salmon?
You could make a side of brown rice. A few nights ago, I did it with a side of gluten-free pasta with a light lemon sauce to match the lemon flavor in the salmon dish. A vegetable like green beans would be good.
SALMON IN LEMON BROTH
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
½ shallot, finely chopped
Zest of 1 lemon, divided
Juice of 1 lemon
¾ cup chicken broth (gluten-free, low-sodium canned chicken broth)
½ cup gluten-free panko bread crumbs
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 pound salmon fillet, cut into 2 pieces (skin on)
2 handfuls arugula
1. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a small pot over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add half the lemon zest, lemon juice and broth. Bring to a simmer, cover, and keep warm until ready to serve.
2. Combine the panko, the remaining lemon zest, salt and pepper in a shallow bowl. Coat the skinned sides of the salmon pieces with half the panko mixture.
3. Heat the olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Place the salmon in the pan, skin sides down. When the bottom halves looks cooked through, 7 to 8 minutes, depending on the thickness, flip them over. Peel off the skin and discard. Press the remaining panko onto the tops of the salmon pieces. Cook until bottoms are no longer raw-looking, 3 to 5 minutes more.
4. Pour some of the broth into 2 shallow soup or pasta bowls. Place a piece of salmon on top of the broth. Top with a handful of arugula. Serve immediately. Makes 2 servings.