As you all know, once you go gluten-free you're forced to throw many of your previous easy mid-week staples out the window. I have found myself falling back often on Mexican and Indian staples now because many of their ingredients are naturally gluten-free. You also all know I fall back on my crock pot a lot ;)
Anyway, my husband I find ourselves eating tacos more often now. Why not when you just have to worry about browning the meat? This dinner kit has also made it even more tasty and easy. One of the hurdles I found myself overcoming in previous Taco nights was finding gluten-free taco seasoning. Or I'd find myself getting the soft corn tortillas that are bland and tasteless. The Garden of Eatin' kit takes care of both these problems for me. For starters, the kit is made with all delicious organic ingredients making the tacos healthy as well as flavorful. And the seasoning is made with rice flour!
It's sold at Whole Foods so I can also pick up organic low-fat meat and then any other toppings I feel like having. Overall, it's an easy, healthy, and delicious meal to add to the rotation. Enjoy!
I recently received a request to post this recipe for the holiday season. If you're a fan of Rice Crispy treats, or other chocolate treats, this may be the recipe for you. These are a tasty combined healthy version of the two.
Carrington Crispy Cocoa Bars are GLUTEN-FREE and packed with superfoods to keep you and your loved ones happy and healthy throughout the holiday season. The bars are perfect to make at home and take on-the-go as a holiday travel snack or can be served as a healthy alternative to brownies or other chocolatey snacks at your holiday gatherings this year.
Carrington Crispy Cocoa Bar
4 cups Crispy Brown Rice cereal
1 cup mini choc chips
1/3 cup Carrington Farms Flax/Chia blend
1/8 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup unsalted tahini
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup blue agave
1 tsp vanilla
· In a large mixing bowl, combine cereal, chips, flax/chia and cocoa. Mix well and set aside.
· In a small saucepan, add tahini, brown sugar, and blue agave. Mix together well. Warm on medium heat, stirring frequently until slight bubbles appear. Remove from heat. Add vanilla to the mixture and stir until mixed well.
· Slowly pour small amounts of the mixture into the mixing bowl with dry ingredients. You must continue to mix the mixtures together to coat the dry ingredients completely. Repeat this step until the saucepan is emptied and the rice cereal mixture is completely coated
· Pour into an aluminum cake pan (9x13 inch) which has been coated with a non-stick spray. Using a wooden spoon or a spatula, pat down the mixture completely. Let it sit until slightly cooled. Cut into 12-16 squares. Refrigerate when cooled. Enjoy!
So I found this article on the internet today that examines if vodka needs to be marketed as gluten-free or not. Apparently many believe it does not need to be because the fermentation process should be enough to get rid of all the gluten in the alcohol. This confused me, because wouldn't that argument then be saying that ALL alcohol should be gluten-free?
I'd have to disagree if that's their argument, because I know I definitely have had reactions to different types of alcohol, including vodka, as have many other gluten-free people I know.
What is also coincidental is the timing of this article for me. I was just out with a gluten-free friend of mine the other day and we found ourselves questioning the different brands of vodka. Many of us mistakenly believe that vodka is safe to drink because it's usually advertised that vodka is made from potatoes. However, in doing some further digging, I found that truth to very seldom be the case actually. Here is a list of vodka base ingredients by brand:
Popular Vodkas & what they’re distilled from:
- Wheat: Stolichnaya (blend), Grey Goose, Ketel One, Snow Queen, Pearl, Van Gogh (blend), La Chance, Vox, Polar Ice, Absolut, Trump, X-Rated (blend), *Three Olives is also Wheat-distilled, but declares itself to be Gluten-Free on the Three Olives website
- Rye: Belvedere
- Barley: Finlandia, Koskenkorva
- Corn: Smirnoff, SF Vodka “Baker Beach”
- Potato: Tito's (This one is actually my new favorite vodka) Chopin, Teton Glacier, Monopolowa, Vikingfjord, Luksosowa, Blue Ice - Grape: Cîroc, Bombora, DiVine, SF Vodka “China Beach”
Sadly, very few of the major brands of vodka are actually safe to drink if this is the case. But what about you? Do any of you have opinions or insights on this topic?
Here is the article by the way: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=vodka-be-marketed-as-gluten-free
Are you looking for tasty, yet healthy meals to serve while entertaining this holiday season? I was recently asked to share this recipe with my readers and think it could definitely fit the bill. The comforting blend of apple cider with pork is perfect to serve guests as this cold weather sets in. So enjoy and Happy Holidays from BistroMD.
BistroMD’s Pork Tenderloin with Apple Cider Reduction
· 2 (1 pound) pork tenderloins cut in 1/2 crosswise
· Extra virgin olive oil
· Salt and freshly ground black pepper
· 1 1/2 cups apple cider
· 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
· 1/4 cup maple syrup
1. Heat oven to 500F and arrange rack in the upper third.
2. Pat pork tenderloins dry with paper towels, brush with oil, and season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add 2 pieces of pork tenderloin and cook until brown on all sides, turning occasionally, about 4 minutes. Set pork aside on a baking sheet and repeat with remaining pieces.
3. Place pork in oven and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the middle of the tenderloin registers at 145 to 150 degrees F°, about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, place pan over high heat, add cider and vinegar and stir, scraping up any browned bits. Cook until mixture is reduced by 2/3, about 8 minutes. Reduce heat to medium, stir in maple syrup and remove from heat until pork is cooked.
4. When pork is ready, rest on cutting board, about 5 minutes. Warm sauce over medium-high heat; add pork and any accumulated juices and spoon sauce over meat to completely coat. When pork is warm, return pork to cutting board and slice thinly. Serve with pan sauce spooned over.
· 4 Fuji Apples cut in wedges
· 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon ground
· 2 Tablespoons of golden raisin
· 1 Tablespoon of olive oil
· In a skillet, heat oil for 1 minute and then add the apples. Cook quickly for 3 minutes until seared lightly brown, add the cinnamon and continue cooking for another 2 minutes, add the raisins and sauté for 1 minute, remove and cool.
Serve with a side of your favorite vegetables.
If you're looking for an easy, but tasty pumpkin pie recipe to make this Thanksgiving, you need to check out my interview with executive chef Justin Swain. Swain has become an expert in cooking for the gluten-free population and was kind enough to share a special pie recipe with me for us to try this holiday season. Click here to read the full interview:
No Bake Pumpkin Pie (Gluten Free)
2 1/4 cup ground raw hazelnuts
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup coconut oil
9 dates, stoned
- Place hazelnuts and cocoa powder in a large bowl and mix well, breaking up any lumps.
- Add coconut oil to powder mixture and mix well.
- Place dates in a small bowl and mash with a fork.
- Add dates to dough-like mixture and combine well with hands.
- Place crust into 9-inch round pie pan.
- Place crust in refrigerator while making filling.
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon molasses
2 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
-Beat cream cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric stand mixer until smooth and creamy. Both fats should be well softened to ensure the filling is lump free.
-Add the powdered sugar to the mixture and beat until smooth and fluffy.
-Add the vanilla extract, molasses, pumpkin pie spice and pumpkin puree and beat until thoroughly combined. If you find that your filling is lumpy, pass it through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl.
-Spoon the filling into the pie shell. Let pie chill in the fridge overnight. (very important that it chills overnight or it won’t setup)
I have heard time and time again that one of the reasons people steer clear of cooking with butternut squash is because it is too difficult to prepare and work with. I even confess that until recently I steered clear of it myself unless I got the pre-cut butternut squash from the grocery store. Then I found the life-saving trick!
I'd heard of roasting it in the oven or microwaving it first to soften it, but then I'd still find myself almost cutting off a finger trying to peel it. But here is the additional secret:
1) Take the squash and prick it with a fork multiple times like you would a potato before putting it in the microwave.
2) Microwave the squash for three minutes.
3) Take it out and chop off the top and bottom of the squash.
4) Then take a potato peeler and peel the skin of the squash.
5) Then scoop out the seeds and dice the squash.
By piercing it with the fork and chopping off the top and bottom you make it dramatically easier to handle and the peeler trick saves you from losing a finger. Hope this trick helps you as much as it did me and now you're more inclined to enjoy the fabulous flavor of butternut squash this fall season.
I just wanted to apologize for things being pretty quiet on the site recently. As many of you know I'm finishing up grad school right now and my thesis deadline is looming. It's a Creative Writing program so for my thesis I'm doing a historical fiction novel about the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire of 1911 in New York City. As you can imagine there's a lot of research and work that's been going into this and I'm a bit overwhelmed at the moment. I actually escaped for a week and I'm down doing a writing retreat in Folly Beach, SC to help me focus on my page count. Just me and the dog in a little cottage three minutes from the beach. It's been great and I have gotten a lot of pages done :) But I wanted to let you all know that this is what's going on, I haven't forgotten about you all. More posts will be coming soon, although they will probably still be sporadic until I finish. Please bear with me and I very much appreciate your patience and understanding.
In the mean time, I have an article out in Gluten Free Living magazine this month. It's about my gluten free eating during my trip to Ireland this past summer. Hopefully some of you have a subscription, otherwise it's in the Nov/Dec issues out in stores right now. Enjoy and thanks for your continued support!
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