Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Training Wheels. Gluten-free Shepherd's Pie

Random noises in Plague-time: Training wheels.
Michael Sedano

I don't look up at strange noises any longer. Living behind glass for months now, I've come to identify and distinguish between recycle garbage trucks and garbage garbage trucks, a pool cleaning pick up from hot-rodders with bad mufflers. Quotidian noise fades away. Today one long, agonized sound of hard friction, of metal wearing against a mechanical device. It's the sound of despair.

The little girl works her bike pedals, her helmet secured under a chin, the training wheels protesting a mishap, or a poor installation, or a dad who doesn't work at being daddy, lets the child's bike just go through the motions. Behind the little girl, a man follows a toddler exploring independent mobility. Dad’s got his hands full, and his face unmasked.

He's not unique nowadays, not anymore. Lots of faces like his pass my window in Plague-time. Their masklessness screams out loud like poorly installed training wheels. We're falling off gente, and we can't get up.

The Gluten-free Chicano Cooks
And the Plague-time Cupboard Was Bare
Michael Sedano

Compromised people do not venture into public for essential supplies like food. For us, the Gig Economy steps in for a $15 fee and an optional 5% tip. What sin vergüenzas of the employers. As usual, labor provides all the productivity and some programmer gets all the money. "All tip money goes to the schlepper," so I sweeten the pot. 

This is the information age. I sit at home on the computer and create information. All the money gets loaded onto the info- element and a trickle comes to minimum wage labor.

Our household food dynamic shifted from just-in-time stocking to bringing inventory and managing its outflow. I muck up a lot, expecting one content only to have ordered the wrong package and that's what the order-puller delivers.

What you get is what you ordered, unless the shopper substitutes. Tortillas are tortillas, que no? So when the corn is out of stock, here's a dozen tortillas de harina--wheat--for the gluten-free Chicano. 

No Grapefruit Juice, instead, here's Ruby Red drink with no high fructose corn syrup! Just a shitload of sugar. The Gig Economy turned these people into servants of the computer, they do not make pulling errors. When you clicked on the screen that was what is in the plastic bag on your front porch. Kinda. 

Shortages happen. Milk sours. So it goes, the Mother Hubbard look on the Gluten-free Chicano, who stared at the empty places between unwanted jello, ghost chile sauces, two jars of sweet pickle relish? I have rice noodles, red quinoa, gf lasagne noodles from a year ago, a two-thirds used box of instant mashed potatoes.

The freezer has a slice of ground beef chub and frozen mixed vegetables. Ideas begin to spin, meat and potatoes.

Mrs. Hubbard finds a piece of bell pepper, carrot, and brown onion. There's always yellow cheddar in the Gluten-free Chicano's refrigerator. The spice rack is well stocked, garlic powder, salt, peppercorns.

Shepherd Pie: Gluten-free By Design. Carb-cautious.

Reading ingredients matters, the ingredients in your hand, not in a recipe. The Gluten-free Chicano doesn't expect any of these ingredients to contain wheat, barley, or rye products, hence "by design." Any Shepherd's Pie should start out an inherently gluten-free preparation. But read the labels.

Mashed potatoes with still-frozen mixed vegetables

Shepherd pie carbs. Source link.

Mashed potato flakes, milk, butter. 30 g / cup. 2 cups = 60 g
Frozen mixed vegetables. 12 g / cup
Cheddar cheese. 1.45 g / shredded loose-pack cup
Onion, raw. 11 g / medium
Carrot, small. 6 g / each
Beef. 0 g
90 g in this Shepherd pie.

Six servings provides some 15 grams of carbohydrates per serving. That's not bad for diabetics like the Gluten-free Chicano who holds to a 50 g per meal limit.

I would add a thinly sliced serrano chile to the beef. Sra. Gluten-free Chicano lives with a hyper-sensitive palate, so the chile goes on the side. But chile. A day without enchilando yourself is like a day without sunshine.

Meat and savory vegetable layer
"Shepherd Pie" calls for rustic preparation, so I rough-cut/chop the carrot and hunk of bell pepper. 

In a cast iron pan over high heat, I wilt the onion then crust the  small portion of beef. Add the vegetables, break up the beef and create a good mix over medium flame.

Non-stick spray a loaf pan. Sprinkle a pinch of cheese on the bottom.

Using the potato flakes available, I make a scant two cups. I keep them dry to give the mashed potatoes some texture. Smaller amount would be better.

Flatten a couple of spoonfuls of potato-frozen veggie mix as a bottom crust.

Make a meat layer, the rest of the mashed potato layer, cover with all the remaining grated cheese. This is extra sharp brick cheese. Sprinkle the top with good Paprika.

Bake at 350º 30 minutes. If your oven burns hot, check to ensure the crust doesn't overbrown.

This is the cross-section with two servings removed. There's a breakfast, a lunch, a dinner, another lunch, and chicken feed here.

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