Friday, September 25, 2009

Gluten Free Gadabout September

Coffee Creamer Update below

Heinz - Gluten Free This sight is a bit frustrating. They don't really say you can trust us to clearly label gluten in our products, but they do say "Product formulations can change so consumers should carefully read product labels to ensure that their favorite Heinz products remain gluten free." They list the countries each gluten free product is sold in, so pay attention to those. It makes me wonder if Australia, Canada, China, Poland, and the UK have stricter gf standards than the U.S does.

I was trying to find out if DeliMex Taquitos are gluten free, and I am drawing the conclusion that they are not.

International Delight Creamers do not contain gluten or soy (which will make my momma happy).

I chatted with someone on the Coffee-Mate website through their Live Help feature and was told that the LIQUID CREAMERS DO NOT contain gluten, but the POWDERS DO. Nice to get an instant answer. :)

Ocean Spray, scroll down; it is the third question from the bottom.

Rice is naturally gluten free, but here is an article about rice you should read at Gluten Free Kitchen. Also, keep in mind that puffed rice used in candies and such are often coated with a barley syrup. This is what the Chex company changed to make their Rice Chex cereal gluten free.

The Gluten-Free Checklist is a site that requires registration (free) but is a nice resource: they have an extensive list of products that are gluten free, with a HUGE variety of categories from which to choose; they list some important and helpful resources for the gluten endangered; What's For Dinner is packed with recipes; there is a forum available; a place to request that a specific product be tested for gluten; and even links to a few manufacturer coupons.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Discovered: Yet another great website!

Another resource: The Gluten Free Homemaker
This place is a hub of activity. Linda has recipes, research, information, even a weekly "carnival" where people can share ideas. She also has a store where she sells gluten free cookbooks. Enjoy the ride!

(Thanks to Kimberly for sleuthing this place!)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

A couple of products have been recommended. The first is called Ultra Gel (this is made from corn) and comes from a company in Utah. The company calls it duct tape for the kitchen. It is supposed to work great for soups, gravies and fruit.

The second product is a gluten-free, all-purpose flour from a company called Domata Living Flour. It's ingredients are rice flour, corn starch, tapioca dextrin and xanthan gum. They also have a seasoned flour and a pizza crust mix.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Gluten Free Caramel Cinnamon Rolls


My friend Sarah, who makes occasional guest appearances via her amazing recipes has struck again. I haven't tasted these, but her sweet little girl Clara, who has Celiac Disease enjoyed them very much (as well as the rest of the family). Her recipe:

Sarah's GF Caramel Cinnamon Rolls
No Gluten, No Soy, No Kidding
1 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons white corn syrup
1 stick butter

Melt together in saucepan and boil 1 minute. Pour into a 9x13 glass baking dish; sprinkle with chopped pecans if desired. Set aside.

2 1/2 cups brown rice flour
2/3 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup corn meal
1/3 cup powdered milk
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup sugar
3 teaspoons xanthan gum

Mix with whisk in large mixing bowl.

2 large eggs
1 1/2 cup warm water (about 110 degrees)
1/3 cup oil
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast

Proof yeast in water for 5 minutes. Beat in eggs and oil. Add to dry ingredients, stirring until dough forms a ball (Sarah used a wooden spoon.) Turn onto generously floured surface and knead for 5 minutes, until not quite so sticky. Clean dough residue from counter and grease it with butter. Butter your rolling pin and hands. Roll dough into rectangle shape, about 12 inches by 14 inches, should be about 1/2 inch thick. Spread with softened butter (about 1/4 cup) and sprinkle with 1/3 cup brown sugar and cinnamon to taste (1 1/2 teaspoons). Can add raisins if desired. Roll carefully from shorter end, seal. Even out the thickness of the roll, and slice into 12 rolls. Lay cut side down on caramel in pan. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 30 minutes. Preheat oven for at least 15 minutes. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes, til tops are browned nicely. Turn out onto cookie sheet immediately.

To turn out: I bake mine in a glass 9x13 pan. Place a cookie sheet that has sides over the pan. Mine is big enough it fits completely over it. Wearing oven mitts has been the easiest way for me, then hold the handles of the glass pan and around the edge of the cookie sheet and turn the whole business over. Lift off the glass pan. Wait a few minutes for the rolls to cool a bit -- it helps the caramel stick on the roll -- we like them best warm. Enjoy!

Variation: Omit caramel in pan. Grease pan and add rolls, baking as directed. Instead of turning out onto cookie sheet, allow to cool slightly and spread with icing.
UPDATE: Sweet little Clara and her family brought in a few cinnamon rolls today for those of us who suffer from glutenitis and I have to say: they are AMAZING. Very light, very glutenish, very delicious. I can't wait to make these for my husband (who is glutenable, but his wife doesn't bake with the stuff anymore). He was just saying how much he misses fresh cinnamon rolls. His momma used to make them from scratch all the time and they were the best ever. These will make him happy I think.

Shepherd's Pot Pie

One of the foods I miss since gluten became my enemy is really truly honest to goodness pie crust. I haven't tasted anything gf that comes close. But, I also miss Chicken Pot Pie and decided that I would figure out a way to have it without a crust. Enter the Shepherd's Pie.

I worked out this recipe some time ago, but hadn't gotten around to sharing it, which is good as this particular blend is very good. My peeps raved about it. My honey, who is gone for the weekend, decided he must have tonight's leftover portion last night too. He was full and happy. As usual, I put it together with the Aunt Lorena method (follow the label trail) and so these quantities are estimated. Really, when putting together a dish like this, approximations and preferences rule.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
I believe this recipe would feed 5-6 people, depending on appetites.

Under the spuds
3 skinless, boneless, chicken breasts - cut up into bite-size pieces (I use scissors I keep in my kitchen, but not kitchen scissors, I hate those things)
1 small red onion fresh from our garden, sliced very thin
a cup or so of frozen peas
3 large organic carrots, cubed and pre-cooked in a little water for about 5 minutes
1/4-1/3 cup Argo cornstarch*
Grated Parmesan cheese to sprinkle (the boxed Kraft-style)
Shredded Mozzarella

Laying the foundation
Place the chicken pieces in the bottom of an ungreased casserole dish (I used a Corning Ware 10x10x2 inch one).
Spread the peas, carrots and onions evenly over the chicken.
Put the cornstarch in the bottom of a small mixing bowl and keep adding small amounts of the chicken broth to it, mixing well until you have added all of it. Pour this over the chicken and vegetables.
Season with a generous amount of garlic powder and then salt and pepper to taste (I used fresh-ground of both).
Sprinkle a layer of Parmesan and a layer of cheese (both of these to taste).

The upper crust
This time I used a pound and a half of garlic mashed potatoes that my mom picked up from Costco, but your favorite loaded mashed potato recipe will be great. Spoon them onto the foundation until the top is well covered. Then you can gently spread the potatoes together so that they are a smooth crust. Sprinkle additional mozzarella cheese across the top.

Turn up the heat
Bake @ 350 for 1 hour until the yummy gravy bubbles up through the potatoes and the cheese is delightfully browned. Remove from oven and let it rest a few minutes. Serve with a tossed salad. Expect comfort food.

* ...because they are gluten free, that's why

What I Did to the Squash (AKA Confessions of a Satisfied Cook)

Finely slice a couple of onions and start to sauté them in about a tablespoon of butter. Squish a couple of garlic cloves through a garlic press, add them to the onions and let them cook on a low heat while you prepare the rest of the vegetables. As each vegetable is prepared, add it to the skillet as well.

3-4 tablespoons green pepper
1 medium summer squash, quartered lengthwise and sliced very thin
2 medium tomatoes, chopped

Sprinkle over the vegetables:
Freshly ground salt and pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon each dried basil and oregano
1/4-1/3 cup Parmesan cheese (more or less, to taste)

Allow this to simmer until the squash is tender, maybe 10 minutes. Very tasty. My husband barbecued burgers to go with it and he said it was the best meal he had ever had!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

This and That

I haven't tried all of the products I link to, I just find them and post them...both for you and for me, for future reference. I search my blog a lot.

Klondike Bars Type gluten in the Ask bubble in the upper right and see what comes up. What a great format for dealing with FAQ's. Kudos to Klondike.

Questions answered about all things Xanthan Gum.

I so appreciate the variety of flour alternatives available to us through Bob's Red Mill.

The Dippy Chick Company These dips are FREE. Not free as in no cost to you, silly; they are clearly labeled if they are gluten free, dairy free, sugar free, sodium free, and etc.

Here are some gluten free cosmetic options: A list you have to pay to get, and a blog devoted to this, but there hasn't been a post since May. If you have found a good list of products you would like to share, please leave a comment and I will add updates as they come in.

Junket Desserts Lots of gluten free options for the sugarly inclined. For those that don't say gluten free at the outset, like the first product on the page, ALL NATURAL GLUTEN FREE Dutch Chocolate Ice Cream Mix, if you click on the individual dessert mixes, it says right under the list of ingredients whether or not it contains gluten. Very nice of them!

Another blogger
That blog links to The Gluten Free Post and I plan to do some serious looking around. This blog seems to be more about what is happening and available in the gluten free world than what to make for dinner tonight, but it is packed with information.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Donuts for Breakfast!!!

(Because anything this lovely deserves to have its picture taken with Ping. Plus, they match.)

Comment: They taste like real doughnuts.
Question: How do they manage that?
Opinion: Yummy!!!

Though I have hypoglycemia, for the most part it doesn't bother me, but white rice flour tends trigger a shaky spell. Because of this, I will only eat one of these at a time (which means I can have this treat six times!) and have some fruit and nuts with it to counter the sweetness.

I love the box! It is just how a donut box should look.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

New Yellow Bricks and an exciting find.

Two new bloggers in my list of followers: Betsy from Chicago, who has been gluten free for ten years (you can bet I will be tapping her blog for that wisdom you can only gain through experience)
Elizabeth the collegiate, who is a wee babe on the blog scene. Since school is probably already in session for her, she may not be able to post too often, but I love the name of her blog!
Welcome aboard, ladies!

A number of my friends use this lady's blog as a resource for meal planning and I had been told she has some gluten free recipes, but I have been making menus and as I was looking through her site as various recipes, she does them all gluten free.

Nummy Snack Bars

I have a friend who is one of those peeps who wears gloves and hands out samples for Costco. The last time I was in there, she was doing a demo of these lovely bars. They have 3 kinds of fruits, three kinds of nuts and three kinds of seeds.

There are four varieties and I am not sure which one I tried, but they are really tasty.

This is the price for 20 bars, which breaks down to 80 cents a piece. Not far from the price of a standard candy bar (in fact I have seen candy bars for that price and more). And yes, they are gluten free. :)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

On the Border... Boise. Mexican food. Allergen menus. Gluten free option. Really good food. Take your own tortilla chips.

A ray of sunshine in your gluten-free life.

Pork Carnita Fajitas with grilled veggies. They were supposed to come with portabello mushrooms, but for some reason the onions are taboo, and apparently the mushrooms are in league with the onions, so they put mine on a bed of chopped, fresh tomatoes. It was good, but I was looking forward to those mushrooms.

The fajitas came with rice and beans, guacamole and the softest, nicest, warm corn tortillas I have ever eaten. Their sour cream has gluten in it, but I didn't miss it. When the waitress brought the plate she said, "you should be fine with everything here but the pico de gallo; it has onions in it" (which was on top of a bed of lettuce on the plate, where the fork is in the picture below). I don't know if all of their onions have gluten or just some, but I will be looking into that. I had no pain after. I really doubt that their gluteny onions are in the pico de gallo, but I wasn't going to overrule her judgment.

She also said there is some gluten free dessert, but I see nothing on the online gluten free menu that fits that description. No matter. This is a really nice restaurant and the food was delicious. For the glutendeathers in your life, they have a lot of lovely choices. Mine had a lovely, beasty-gluten burrito.