Light and fresh smoothie

I love the plethora of fresh fruit options this time of year. If you like a think and chunky smoothie, freeze them first. This one was light and refreshing with fresh fruit. 

1 nectarine

2 slices watermelon chunked

1T honey

1scoop protein powder

1C water (or juice for additional sweetness)

This was really light and fresh and didn’t taste like protein at all. Enjoy!

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Hearty gluten free smoothie

I need something filling in the morning or I will resort to carbs every time. In my desire to get fit, I’m trying to make healthier allergy friendly food choices. 

This is a smoothie recipe I put together with some of my favorite foods. It blends better than you think and the avocado wouldn’t even be detective by people who avoid eating green things that aren’t a lifesaver.

1 Avocado

1 C frozen berries

1T Honey

1 Scoop Greek Yogurtein Coconut Flavor protein powder

1T Lemon juice

2C water

Blend in magic bullet and drink immediately!

Gluten free meals, fast

I’m convinced that if my life were in TV it would be a timed cooking show. You know… here’s eight random ingredients, two hungry kids and thirty minutes until bedtime… now go!

That’s why it’s always a good idea for me to have gluten free corn dogs, chicken nuggets and frozen burgers on hand.

I’d love to say that I could think of something palatable to make out of avocado, apples, frozen hamburger meat, eggs and almond milk. Chances are pretty good, even if I were to whip it up, I would receive a big, fat “eww gross” from my mini audience.

I’ve vowed to try and take some of my kids favorite restaurant meals and replicate them in house. This will save time, money and the entertainment factor of our traveling road show, at bedtime.

Considering my narrow window for meal consumption, the prep time needs to be virtually non-existent. That’s why most of my meals can be completed in thirty minutes.

A couple of things I avoid when cooking are large prep times and mixing blends of flours. No thank you. I will be utilizing mixes whenever possible.

Check out some of my easy recipes for families on the go!

A hint… my favorite appliance is the
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Gluten free beef and broccoli 

I love Chinese food!

Unfortunately, 98% of the restaurants seem to use gluten filled soy sauce. I usually limit my orders to either mei fun (for the kids) or moo goo gai pan (or other non breaded dishes with white sauce).

Thus, I was inspired to whip up some beef and broccoli with gluten free soy sauce. Like most of my recipes… it’s super easy.

4lb ribeye steaks (if fresh, cut into strips)

4 stalks broccoli (fresh)

1.5c water (or beef broth)

1/4C La Choy Soy Sauce

1/4C Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce

2C frozen onions

Cook in the “magic pot” or //ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=tf_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=gftifshealtht-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B001A62O1G&asins=B001A62O1G&linkId=1b4e4c2fb1dd2fce64c05d79954757e5&show_border=true&link_opens_in_new_window=true&price_color=e629dd&title_color=e633c8&bg_color=faf5fa Fagor Electric Pressure Cooker for 10 minutes. Put sauce in last, over entire mixture. If frozen meat is used, cut into strips after cooking.

Dip veggies and sauce over the meat in bowls.

Chow.

The Gluten Free Pizza debacle

Being lied to is not on the top of my Christmas list. I understand the concept of proprietary information and I appreciate restaurants being cutting edge but come on, people! Do not lie to me.

When it comes to how restaurant staff answer a question about ingredients, products, prep area, contamination and the like, I expect them to take me seriously. Very seriously.

I went into Giordanos, Indianapolis location for lunch. It was the first time since the nationally recognized, Chicago pizza chain moved in and having popped in once while in chi-town, I figured it would be a pleasant experience. 

I called them to verify the brand of pizza crust to ensure it was both gluten and rice free. On the phone I was told they make it there, yet they threw away the packaging and I’d have to call Chicago if I wanted any further info. 

Uh, wait… what? If you make it there, why would there be packaging to throw away? Ok. So, I called Chicago. They too had, surprisingly, thrown away the packaging and were unable to verify the brand of crust but alas, somehow they managed to have all the ingredients available. Hmmm…

Fortunately, she was able to give me the ingredients and indeed, it was rice free as well. Oh, and side note, they are pre-made frozen crusts. I guess the other girl wasn’t there on that training day.

I was also informed they have dedicated pans for gluten free cooking but use the same prep space as their flour filled, dough flinging step brother. Great.

The kids and I emerged unscathed from this one but I have to admit, I’d love a tour and a chat with someone transparent enough to share how the process, product and prep is really handled for future visits and the health of other celiacs. 

May the sauce be with you.

Gluten free travel – GO!

Most celiac’s have anxiety when traveling. The thought of having to find a place to eat that is safe, is overwhelming. In fact, it often distracts from the joy that the adventure can bring. 

I have tried to take on a completely different perspective when traveling. In fact, one of the most exciting parts of traveling to new places is discovering what types of gluten-free food they have it in those areas. 

Granted, I tend to take back-up supplies with me such as think thin peanut butter bars, beef jerky and packets of gluten free instant oatmeal, as well as a few other nonperishables, but in most cases I don’t need them.

With the exception of Mexico, and other countries without clean water sources, I can always rely on fresh fruits and vegetables to supplement my diet as well.

However, I have found there to be a plethora of options in most cities that are exciting, enjoyable and safe to consume.

My favorite places to travel to have been:

Seattle, WA

Columbus, OH

Chicago, IL

San Juan, Puerto Rico

London, England

Keep an open mind, download the “find me gluten free” app, do a bit of online research before you go and pack a few resources just in case. But don’t be afraid to travel, instead be excited to find the next big thing in gluten free! 

Coffee: Gluten Free or Not?

As a purveyor of the gluten free diet, I like to read up on research, ideas and points of view on what others view as gluten free, naturally gluten free and totally unsafe territory.

It’s often difficult to determine, at first glance, if a food is truly gluten safe. In fact, some people choose to view all things as unsafe, until proven otherwise. I get it. Once you have been poisoned, you tend not to take these things for granted.

Recently, I was reading some posts about the controversy of coffee. Hot or cold, pour over or cold brew, the writers perspective was that most coffee was not gluten free. This got me to wondering… is it?

I sat down for a quick cuppa and chat with Tony and Debbie Zancanaro, Owners of The Well Coffeehouse in Fishers, IN and asked them some questions about the nature of coffee and what would make it gluten free… or not.

As physicians, they were both familiar with celiac disease and the application of a gluten free diet. They even explained how they make available gluten free pastries in their coffeehouse, outsourced by a baker who exclusively makes gluten free treats and delivers them in plastic containers, only housing gluten free goods.

They shared that their beans come from a single source, grown at high altitude (where growing cross-contamination is not an issue) on a bush, are harvested from the pit of the cherry (which would be protected by it’s outer shell). Then the pits are laid out and dried, stored in plastic bins (that only house these beans) and shipped in bags. Their beans do not have anything sprinkled on them either.

Like anything, all coffee beans are not created equal. I’m going to continue searching and will be posting more as I discover processes, sourcing, roasting and flavor norms. Keep an eye out for more info and in the mean time, feel free to stop in at The Well Coffeehouse for a gluten free cup of coffee and scone!