Gluten Free Meatball Recipe

vertical kanda in cast iron skillet

This Gluten Free Meatball Recipe is known as Kanda in the Central African Republic. It’s made with ground beef and a special ingredient…. Pumpkin seeds! Serve these up the traditional way (with onion tomato sauce) or on a bed of pasta with pasta sauce! Either way, this Gluten Free Meatball Recipe (kanda) is delicious! 

If you like experimenting with foods, this is a great recipe for you to try! Who doesn’t like a good meatball?? Seriously, no one. Not a soul. 

Meatballs are a good, classic favorite. So if you want to try some global experimentation in your kitchen without TOO big of a risk, this is the recipe for you. 

Kanda is a recipe that, so far, I’ve only seen a variation of from the Central African Republic. This kanda recipe feature pumpkin seeds ground into a powder. In this recipe we mix the pumpkin seeds with beef to make delicious and simple meatballs. 

In the Central African Republic, there’s also another form of kanda called Kanda ti nyma, which, instead of pumpkin seeds, is made with okra and peanuts.

What is in this Recipe for Gluten Free Meatballs?

Ground beef
Pumpkin seeds
Onion
Garlic
Salt 
Black pepper
Cold water 

For full measurements and instructions, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of the page. 

How to Make Kanda 

In a food processor or blender, grind the pumpkin seeds to a powder.

Add the rest of the ingredients into the food processor and grind until fully combined. 

Transfer the mixture to a bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour. 

Heat some olive oil in a cast iron skillet.

Roll the mixture into meatballs about the size of golf balls. Place them in the pan, and use tongs to turn them as they cook, ensuring that they brown on all sides and cook through. It will take about 15 or so minutes. 

You may need to cook them in two batches. 

Serve with whatever sauce you’d like.

How to Serve your Gluten Free Meatball Recipe

The traditional way to make this gluten free meatball recipe is by placing the meatballs in a tomato and onion sauce. You can even serve it with rice! 

The way that we served them in my family was to put them over a bed of spaghetti noodles. The next day, we served them just with a side of pasta sauce, similar to how they’re enjoyed in the Central African Republic. Both days they were deeelicious, and definitely a do-over meal in my house!

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Kanda (Gluten Free Meatballs)

This Gluten Free Meatball Recipe is known as Kanda in the Central African Republic. It’s made with ground beef and a special ingredient…. Pumpkin seeds! Serve these up the traditional way (with onion tomato sauce) or on a bed of pasta with pasta sauce! Either way, this Gluten Free Meatball Recipe (kanda) is delicious! 

Course dinner, Main Course, meat
Cuisine central african republic
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
resting time 1 hour
Servings 36 meatballs

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground beef meat
  • 2 cups pumpkin seeds
  • 1 Onion chopped
  • 1 tsp Garlic
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • ½ cup Cold water

Instructions

  1. In a food processor or blender, grind the pumpkin seeds to a powder.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients into the food processor and grind until fully combined.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  4. Heat some olive oil in a cast iron skillet.
  5. Roll the mixture into meatballs about the size of golf balls. Place them in the pan, and use tongs to turn them as they cook, ensuring that they brown on all sides. It will take about 15 or so minutes.
  6. You may need to cook them in two batches.
  7. Serve with whatever sauce you’d like.

Recipe Notes

Recipe copyright The Foreign Fork. For educational or personal use only. 

Pumpkin Pie Filling Recipe

Pumpkin Pie Filling Recipe

Pumpkin Pie Filling …. A classic.  A tradition. Beloved by many. Thanksgiving is coming up in the United States which you KNOW means pumpkin pie galore… This pumpkin pie is a little twist on a great classic, and features a little bit of dulce de leche! It adds a perfect amount of sweetness and creaminess to the recipe!

Story Time

How many of you watch Friends AKA the very best television show made in the entire universe… (think I’m wrong? Change my mind in the comments.) Anyways, if you know Friends, you know about the Nesele Toulouse incident.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, let me explain. There’s this episode of Friends where Phoebe is trying to give Monica her grandmother’s famous chocolate chip cookie recipe. Phoebe’s grandmother is dead and she only has one singular cookie left, so they work together to create at least 22 batches of cookies to try to guess the recipe.

At the very end, the group is defeated as they haven’t figured out the recipe, and Phoebe mentions that it came from a distant relative… Nesele Toulouse. Or, if you pronounce it differently… Nestle Tollhouse.  

Monica throws Phoebe the bag of chocolate chips they’ve been using and they realize that it has been the Nestle Tollhouse recipe all along. 

Pumpkin pie filling recipe

My Family’s Pumpkin Pie Filling Recipe….

When I was content planning this year, I was going through all of my old recipes…. I found my pumpkin pie filling recipe and decided that it would be perfect to put on the blog! I wouldn’t need to recipe test, because I KNOW it works perfectly. 

My mom gave me the pumpkin pie recipe a looong time ago, so before I decided to post the recipe, I asked her where we had gotten it. I wanted to make sure that it was actually a family recipe and that I wasn’t plagiarizing from anyone else. 

My mom assured me that the pumpkin pie filling recipe belonged to my grandmother and that I could share it without any fear that I was copying it from anyone else. 

 …. Doesn’t Belong to Us

I set out on my merry way to the grocery store, ready to buy all of the ingredients that I need for (what my mother calls) my grandmother’s pumpkin pie recipe. I head over to the baking aisle, pick up a can of pumpkin, and look at the recipe on the back label.

There, plain as daylight on the back of the can, is “my grandmother’s” pumpkin pie recipe. Turns out it’s not my grandma’s after all, and had just been written down from the back of the can years ago. 

What’s In This Pumpkin Pie Filling? 

Thank God I noticed! So, instead of publishing that pumpkin pie filling recipe (I ain’t no copier!), I made up a different one. And this pumpkin pie filling recipe is made with smooth and creamy dulce de leche to add another wonderful level of flavor and texture to the recipe. 

The recipe also includes: 

Canned pumpkin 

Sweetened condensed milk 

Dulce de leche 

Eggs

Flour

Cinnamon

Nutmeg

Cloves

Sugar

Salt 

For full measurements and recipe instructions, see the recipe card at the bottom of the page. 

Pumpkin Pie filling recipe

How to Make this Pumpkin Pie Filling: 

Mix all of your ingredients together and pour into a pre-prepared pie crust of your choice. 

Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes

Reduce heat to 325 and cook for another 35-40 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. 

History of Pumpkin Pie

As much of a shock as this might be, I have to share: pumpkin pie did not originate in America. Long before the first settlers came to America, England was making their own version of pumpkin pie.

The Native American settlers that helped the pilgrims survive their first winter in America at Plymouth colony were also very familiar with pumpkins.

Because of this, it can be assumed that pumpkin pie in some form was served at the three day feast that the pilgrims and the Wampanoag shared. 

It’s hard to believe, but Thanksgiving wasn’t always an American holiday. In fact, Abraham Lincoln only declared Thanksgiving a holiday in 1863.

At the time, many of the abolitionists were also campaigning for the creation of Thanksgiving as a national holiday, so in many of their abolitionist poems, etc pumpkin pie and Thanksgiving are mentioned.

Because of this, many Confederates in the 1860s thought that Abraham Lincoln was trying to push Yankee and abolitionist tradition on the people in the South when he announced the new national holiday.

Info credited to The History Channel

Is Pumpkin Pie Filling Supposed to be Runny Before Baking?

Yes! Your pumpkin pie filling will be pretty runny before it gets baked in the oven. It should pour very easily. Take care not to spill your pumpkin pie filling as you walk to the oven. I always put the pie tin on a cookie sheet while I walk, as a way to catch any spilled filling!

You will know your pumpkin pie is ready when a knife inserted into the filling comes out clean. 

Is This Recipe Gluten Free?

Typically, yes, pumpkin pie filling is gluten free. There is actually 3 tbsp of flour in this recipe, so my filling is not gluten free. However, you can omit the flour if need be and just cook the filling a little longer. This will successfully transform this pumpkin pie filling into a gluten free dessert (As long as it’s paired with a gluten free pie crust). 

Can Pumpkin Pie Filling be Made Ahead of Time?
=

You betcha! This pumpkin pie filling would be very easy to make ahead of time. I would store it in a plastic container in the fridge and only pour it into the pie crust right before baking. Don’t forget to mix up the filling before pouring it into the crust! 

Phew, folks, that was a long one! But hopefully you feel a little more educated and a lot more prepared to make this Pumpkin Pie Filling Recipe. If you liked this, don’t forget to leave a comment letting me know what you thought! 

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Pumpkin Pie Filling Recipe

This pumpkin pie filling recipe is delicious! The recipe contains a delicious twist on a great classic– dulce de leche!

Course baking, Dessert, pie
Cuisine thanksgiving
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Servings 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 can (16 oz) pumpkin
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • ¼ cup + 2 tbsp dulce de leche
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp cloves
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl with an electric mixer. Pour into a pie crust.
  2. Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes
  3. Reduce heat to 325 and cook for another 35-40 minutes, or until knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Recipe Notes

Recipe copyright The Foreign Fork. For educational or personal use only. 

Qutab (Azerbaijan): A Savory, Herb-Filled Crepe

Stack of Qutab crepes

Qutab is a savory crepe from Azerbaijan. The only qualifier to this dish is that the crepe must be filled with herbs. After that, creativity is welcome! Try different meats, cheeses, herbs, or spreads and discover your favorite Qutab combination.

Lookin’ for a little snack? A great appetizer? A light lunch that pairs perfectly with delicious soup? Look no further, my (wo)man! I gotchu covered right here.

These little snackers remind me of crepes, but crunchier. The batter is made of all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, oil and boiling water. It crisps up nicely to make a deliciously textured crust.

Overhead view of qutab on wooden board

Making the Crepe

When making the pancake portion of the Qutab, use a medium pan, and make sure to re-grease it with each new circle of dough added. Place the dough in the pan, and immediately begin filling the crepe with your desired filling. Leave the crepe to cook for about 30 seconds to one minute, until it starts to brown. Using a rubber spatula, fold the dough over to create a half moon shape. Continue cooking the Qutab until both outer sides have browned.

Stack of Qutab with herbs and yogurt dip

Filling Your Qutab

The freedom is yours from there! As long as the Qutab are filled with herbs, they’re considered a traditional Azerbaijani recipe.

I chose to fill my Qutab with mint, dill, cilantro, and chives, but you can also choose from sage, oregano, or any other herbs that catch your eye. Be sure to use a base of spinach! If you’d like meat in your crepe, ground lamb makes a great choice. Mix in paneer or feta for a cheesy addition, or add spreads to the cooked crepe, like pumpkin or molasses.

Get creative in the kitchen and see where it takes you! If you come up with a mind-blowing combo, share it with me!! If you liked this Qutab, I’m sure you’ll also live this Boolawnee from Afghanistan or this Zucchini Slice from Australia!

Qutab (Azerbaijan)

Qutab is a savory crepe from Azerbaijan. The only qualifier to this dish is that the crepe must be filled with herbs. After that, creativity is welcome! Try different meats, cheeses, herbs, or spreads and discover your favorite Qutab combination.

Ingredients

Crepe Dough

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup wheat flour
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1.5-2 cups boiling water as needed

Filling

  • 2 cups spinach 1 bunch
  • ½ cup feta
  • 3 stalks chives
  • 2 tbsp mint
  • 2 tbsp dill
  • 1 tbsp Lemon juice
  • ¼ white onion
  • 2 tbsp cilantro
  • 2 tbsp yogurt
  • ¼-½ cup pumpkin depending on preference
  • 1/4 cup onion chopped

Instructions

Make the Dough

  1. Mix both types of flour together and add the salt. 

  2. Boil the water on the stove. Slowly pour the water into flour until you have a ball of dough that is wet and holds itself together but is not sticky. 

  3. Allow the dough to cool, then add the oil and knead the dough until soft. Cover and leave to rest for about half an hour.

Filling and Assembly

  1. In a medium pan, sauté the chopped onion and the chives together. 

  2. Once translucent, add the spinach and the lemon juice and sauté until wilted. Remove from the heat and add the rest of the filling ingredients except for the pumpkin. Stir to combine.

  3. Separate dough into quarters. Flour a surface and use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a circle, flouring as necessary. 

  4. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Drizzle the skillet with oil and lay the circle of dough on the skillet. 

  5. Spread pumpkin puree on one half of the dough and then layer 2 tbsp of filling on the dough. Fold the dough in half and press the edges together. 

  6. Cook until the dough becomes crispy and browned, then flip and cook the other side. Repeat until ingredients are gone. 

  7. Serve with plain yogurt as a dipping sauce on the side.

Recipe Notes

Recipe copyright The Foreign Fork. For educational or personal use only.