As a blogger, I often get emails from companies or people who offer to send me free gluten-free products to review on my blog. Many of the food products I’m offered for review are food products I would not choose to buy; thus, I decline the offers. Recently, however, I received an offer to try Tyrrell’s Hand Cooked English Potato Chips, which I accepted. Although I do not eat potato chips on a daily basis, I do eat them often enough to be interested in trying this gluten-free brand, with which I was unfamiliar. I actually eat more potato chips since my diagnosis for Celiac than I did the years before my diagnosis. Chips, as I quickly learned, can be a Celiac’s best friend in a time of need and scarcity. Many times I’ve attended a party at which the only food I could safely eat was potato chips, the brand of which I knew to be gluten-free. Many times I’ve been on road trips from Texas to some other state, and the only gluten-free food I could find at one of those gas stations (at the cross roads out in the middle of nowhere, you know the kind – gas pumps + fast food restaurants + convenience store, fully stocked mostly with snacks and foods for those people who can eat gluten) to satiate my hunger after my personal snack supply had run out was a bag of gluten-free chips. Yes, potato and tortilla chips quickly took their place as my gluten-free- safe-food-in-an-emergency.
I was eager to try Tyrrell’s chips. They are gluten-free and natural, and cooked in small batches. They also come in a variety of interesting flavors. I accepted the offer to try the chips, and for some reason I was expecting to receive one, or maybe two, bags of the chips. I was extremely surprised when the package arrived in the mail and I opened it to see this:
The Tyrrell company sent me a bag of every available chip flavor! Wow. Talk about carb loading! No problem, though. We have a couple of races scheduled in the next few weeks. We can use some carbs . . . . Training aside, I decided Phillip and I should probably share the chips (and the carbs), so I took the veg and Worcestershire Sauce / sundried tomato flavors to my daughter and son-in-law to try. Phillip and I, always willing to take one for team gluten-free, valiantly and courageously made our way through the other flavors (sea salt and cider vinegar, sweet chili and red pepper, lightly sea salted, mature cheddar and chives, sea salt and cracked black pepper). We went through them pretty quickly, until we had two bags left and I suddenly realized I could get creative with the chips! With my first bite of the mature cheddar and chives chips, I knew it would make a super topping for some sort of vegetable or casserole. Before I even opened the lightly sea salted chips, I thought: chocolate. Yes, these chips would lend themselves to some sort of chocolate-ty sweet / salty deliciousness.
Before I share the gluten-free recipes in which I used these latter two flavors of chips, I must explain something special about these chips. The Tyrrell chips actually taste like the flavors they claim to taste like. No kidding. Usually flavored chips and such have only a slight semblance of the flavors they claim to emulate. One detects a hint of the artificial in flavored foods, and simply passes it off as the industry norm. I had that same expectation as I opened the first bag of chips after they arrived: sweet chili and red pepper. I kept the chip in my mouth, lingering over it, in order to give the chips their complete due. I found, to my surprise, that the chip actually tasted like sweet chili and red pepper: so much so that it tastes distinctly like pad Thai. I love pad Thai. Phillip walked into the room shortly after I opened the chips. I had him taste one and without telling him what I thought, asked him what he thought of the chips. He said he liked them, of course, but then he paused a minute and said, “They taste just like pad Thai.” Yeah, well, I’ll tell it like it is. Between the two of us, that bag of chips did NOT last long. The other flavors are true to their flavor claims, as well. Elizabeth has found the same characteristic with the flavors she tried. She also reported that (three year old) B and (two year old) H ate the parsnip chips, but rejected the beet and carrot chips. Those parsnip chips must be pretty tasty. In fact, all the Tyrrell chips are pretty tasty.
I finally decided to use the mature cheddar and chive chips as a topping for oven roasted cauliflower. It worked wonderfully, and tasted delicious. The flavor of cheddar and chive complemented the flavor of the cauliflower, and the crunchy chip topping added a pleasant contrast of texture to the tenderness of the roasted cauliflower. I did not, however, get a picture of the dish. I’ve already detailed my on-going issue / problem with the photography responsibilities of food bloggers these days, so I’ll fore-go more whining and excusing, and simply apologize for providing a recipe without an accompanying photograph.
Gluten-Free Oven Roasted Cauliflower With Tyrrell Mature Cheddar and Chive Hand Cooked English Potato Chips
1 medium cauliflower, broken into florettes
4 tbls butter, cut into small pieces
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup Tyrrell’s Mature Cheddar and Chive potato chips, food processed into crumbs
-Preheat oven to 425
-Place cauliflower florets in a single layer in a shallow baking dish (or 13 x 9 inch pan)
-Cot the cauliflower evenly with pieces of butter
-Cover the pan with foil and bake for about twenty or twenty-five minutes (until cauliflower feels tender
when pricked with a fork).
-Remove the foil from the cauliflower, sprinkle the Tyrrell’s Mature Cheddar and Chive English Potato
chip crumbs evenly over the cauliflower and return to the oven, uncovered.
-Bake until potato chip crumbs begin to brown
I decided to bake the Tyrrell’s lightly sea salted flavored chips into brownies. To make these brownies, I simply adapted my general go-to brownie recipe. I warn you, though. If you bake these brownies, you WILL not be able to eat just one. The contrast of textures created by the crunchy chip topping with chewy brownie combines with the salty – sweet – dark chocolate fusion of flavors to create a delectably irresistible dessert. I did remember to take a picture! Yes! I saw my phone nearby and it sparked my memory! When my brownies were finished, I looked online to find inspiration for creative brownie photographs. I quickly surmised that brownies apparently lack the power to inspire food artistry; food photographers pose brownies in the same two or three positions! Not to be deterred from providing a photograph when I actually remembered to take one, I made my creative decision. Here is my obligatory food photograph, with the obligatory stacked-brownie pose:
Gluten-Free Double Chocolate Sea Salted Potato Chip Brownies
8 tbls butter
150 g coconut sugar
62.5 g Cashew flour
40 g Valrhona cocoa
1 tsp aluminum free baking powder
¼ tsp guar gum (optional)
3 eggs, beaten
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
75 g Guittard extra dark chocolate (63% cacao mass) chips
25 g coarsely crushed Tyrrell’s Lightly Sea Salted English potato chips
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees
-butter the bottom and sides of an 8×8 pan
-In a medium bowl, mix together the melted butter and coconut sugar.
-Stir in the cashew flour, cocoa, baking powder, guar gum, eggs, and vanilla. Mix well.
-Sprinkle the chocolate chips evenly over the top of the brownie batter
-Place the sea salted potato chips in a sandwich bag. Seal the bag. Roll a rolling pin over the chips to
coarsely crush them.
-Sprinkle the crushed chips evenly over the chocolate chips and brownie batter.
-Bake in a 350 degree oven until done, about twenty minutes.