Monthly Archives: November 2011

Gluten-Free Chex Mix Two Awesome Ways

All right my foodie friends, I can hear you sniffing at me right now. Chex Mix? Really? Well suckas, Chex Mix happens to be a) delicious, and b) filled with gluten. So put away your organic wine from the Willamette Valley and pay attention. ‘Cuz we made some gluten-free Chex Mix to help ring in the holidays and . . . gluten-free Muddy Buddies. Oh yeah! That’s how we snack.

Since I didn’t want to sully my rep as an amazing chefs-tress (ahem), I decided to employ my family in the making of the holiday Chex snacks. First up, my husband who insists on having Chex Mix starting November 23rd and running all the way into the new year. Look at my man go!

He’s handsome, no? Luckily he didn’t have to ditch his favorite snack this year since Chex went gluten-free, and Glutino makes some amazing gluten-free pretzels and they also just added gluten-free bagel chips which are just as good as the norms. Which is why he was willing to add them into his traditional mix. (This is where I admit my better half begged his mother to bring us a bag of gluten-filled Chex Mix complete with Cheerios. You know, I love that guy but he’s kind of a Benedict Arnold.)

My committment to Muddy Buddies this year was just as simple. Using the gluten-free Corn and Rice Chex in this recipe was so easy a 5-year-old could do it. In fact, I totally made my 5-year-old make these Muddy Buddies for Thanksgiving. This is how she makes sure they’re evenly covered:

This is also where I enlighten you with our enlightened-ness: We’re a mixed religious family. And while I may connect Muddy Buddies with Thanksgiving and Christmas, clearly the Jewish half has other ideas. I mean, Sukkot has been over for like 41 days. Really.

Regardless, I think you can see how you can make rad holiday snacks while still being g-free. Just in case you don’t want to buy the box and get these gluten-free Chex Mix recipes (although you realize you have to buy the box, right?), let me fill you in on how you do it: Continue reading

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Why Starbucks Can Suck It

Delicious Yet Deadly

I’ll admit it. I was on a holiday high last weekend. My adorable family of four was all together. We were going to movies, we were eating tons of good food, we were rolling about on our shag carpet, and just enjoying checking out. Yeah, that’s what we do.

So I was feeling cocky. I blew into Starbucks and ordered up a Gingerbread Latte. Big mistake.

I will say this. I did a perfunctory check with the barista. “Umm, do you have the nutritional information? Or a list of the allergens in this drink?” The banged cuteness responded as weakly as I did, “Ummm, no. I don’t think so.” At that point I knew I was taking my health into my own hands. But damn, I wanted some gingerbread. It’s mother scratching Christmas, you guys. And I wanted some gingerbread up in here.

So I took that calorie-laden bucket of goodness home and started to drink it. But first, I thought I’d check online. As if. Continue reading

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I’m a Gluten-Free Control Freak & So Are You

Hey, there's only a few tablespoons of flour. You'll be okay, right?

Okay, maybe you’re not. And if not, I’m sorry I just totally called you names. But as Thanksgiving arrives, ushering in the full-on holiday season I’m realizing that there’s no way I can enjoy this time without completely controlling every single thing about it. Like, everything. You guys, I traveled to a get together with gluten-free crackers in my purse last night. Yet again. It wasn’t the first time and it sure as heck won’t be the last. What if there’s cheese? And I need to eat it?

There are most certainly amazing Hanukkah get togethers in my future. And unlike last year’s super fun chow down at Canter’s, I’m sure I’ll be making lots of gluten-free latkes and brisket up in here and forcing everyone to come to me. Alternately, I’ll show up at your house with plate of hot oiled potatoes with no flour traces. That’s cool, right? And don’t even get me started on Christmas cookies. Just don’t. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Recipes III: Sweet Potato Fritters

I’ve been having fun with my deep fat fryer this weekend in pursuit of the ultimate in fried food for the celiac. You were hoping someone would do that, right? You don’t have to give up greasy fried food just because you can’t eat wheat. But you do have to make it yourself. Which is why I’m here. To help you, help yourself.

This recipe for gluten-free sweet potato fritters is so incredibly fast and easy. You just need your gluten-free bread crumbs and gluten-free flour. And the rest of these ingredients, all mushed together:

Honestly, I’ll fry anything but these sweet potato fritters seem perfect for the holiday, yes? You can go sweet or savory when you’re making fritters, and this recipe is decidedly sweet. The cinnamon really makes it work (alongside all that sugar, of course). In fact, I think rather than serving it along side Thanksgiving dinner you should consider this a dessert. Although I will try to sneak in some sweet potato to my kids in this donut-like form because I’m tricky like that.

Speaking of donuts (as I always do), I do believe one could tweak this recipe a bit and make actual light and airy donuts. In fact, I’ll get right on that as soon as I’m finished stuffing myself for this particular holiday. Because these fritters are good, you guys. I mean, can’t stop eating them good. But I must, to avoid that heart attack that is surely coming.

You know you want it! Here’s how. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Recipes II: Stuffing ‘N’ Salad

It’s gluten-free Thanksgiving all week long at my house! And I’m certain everyone is really appreciative and not at all getting burned out on traditional Thanksgiving food. I don’t care how many times the request has been made that “Maybe we should just go to Denny’s on Thanksgiving.” I know they LOVE it.

Last night we enjoyed some recipes for a gluten-free cornbread, pecan, and sausage stuffing and a butternut squash salad that I tweaked in many, many, ways; again taken from the New York magazine holiday eating piece. This time I stole from April Bloomfield, which I think is only fair given the amount of time she stole from me as I waited outside The Spotted Pig in hopes of getting a table.

The most labor intensive part of this ordeal is mixing all of the herbs and spices together before you slather them on the squash for roasting. I used a mortar and pestle, even though the instructions in the original recipe are quite different. I just love the satisfaction of grinding up a bunch of crunchy things in a bowl. It makes me feel all primitive and stuff.

As you can see in the first photo above, it’s a pretty simple salad after you’ve grinded the crap out of the marjoram & friends, made even more so since I nixed the pomegranate seeds. I have a thing about fruit in salad. Or fruit in savory main courses. Cooked fruit in pies (unless it’s citrus), and basically anything unless it’s fresh fruit. I realize it’s not okay to be so picky once you’re already eliminating everything from your diet, but I honestly can’t help it. I’m just not a fan of mixing savory and sweet unless it involves chocolate, salt, caramel, and gluten-free pretzels.

Which is why I also cut out the cranberries in this stuffing, but feel free to add. I think it’s perfect just like this –

Doesn’t that look like you just want to dive in and take a nap? Or is that weird?

Be sure when you use this recipe you buy gluten-free cornmeal, or even a gluten-free cornbread mix. Cornbread is not gluten-free, unfortunately, and you must look at labels to avoid the big sick.

By the way, I stuff my turkey with lemons and onions, never with foods I actually want to eat. Do people still do that? Are you wasting perfectly delicious bread products in the cavity of your turkey? I think it’s time to stop that tradition. No one should waste amazing gluten-free cornbread,  pecan and sausage stuffing on the butthole of a bird.

Here’s how you can make these dishes as well! Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Recipes That Will Make You Pee Your Pants

You know, instead of pooping them.

For my first gluten-free Thanksgiving I’ve been practicing on my friends and family. They appreciate it, really. ‘Cuz I’ve found some freaking delicious gluten-free sides, starters, desserts, and anything else you can think of to shove in your (gluten-free) pie hole. Honestly, they won’t even know that you painstakingly scoured the Interwebs and the cook books to convert normal recipes into ones for us freaky types.

But this recipe that appeared in the New York mag’s holiday cooking with celebrity chefs issue is so crazy good — even gluten-free — that you can just make this sweet potato meringue pie with pecan crust and burn the turkey for all they’ll care. And there was only one gluten-free substitution I had to make! Luckily I’ve been practicing the graham cracker crust business with my Kinnikinnik gf graham crackers, so it was no problem. Also I sub’d vanilla for vanilla paste because what the heck is that? Vanilla paste sounds awesome, but I just couldn’t find it after a three grocery tour. (By the way, can we talk about how my Whole Foods isn’t as good as it should be?) But other than that, these are the most important things you need to make this ah-ma-zing Thanksgiving dessert.

That looks delightful, yes?

A toasted pecan, graham cracker, cinnamon, fresh ginger, brown sugar crust is da’ bomb. You guys, this crust is epic. In fact, this whole dang recipe is epic. Even though I was slaving for hours, it was incredibly satisfying to create a masterpiece like this. My husband, however, was like, “Come to bed already!” But look at phase two, which is the bourbon, sweet potato and brown sugar portion of the recipe.

I almost licked it.

Then came the meringue, and it was all over. I totally licked that.

You guys, this is one of the most amazing pies I’ve ever made. You should totally get your g-free graham crackers up in this and go nuts this holiday season. Here’s how!

Continue reading

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Is This a Gluten-Free Girl Scout Cookie????

Girl Scout Cookie time is exactly like Christmas. It comes once a year, you eat so much you get sick, and you wonder how you can make that beautiful yet disgusting feeling last all year ’round. And it’s also something that is potentially devastating for those of us who can’t eat the gluten. But did you see these??

I found these Mrs. Crimble’s gluten-free cookies when I was shopping at a pretty rad store, G-Free NYC on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. I immediately assumed these were gluten-free Samoas and my life was now complete. Alas, they were chocolate macaroons. I say alas, because I was hoping someone was copying the whole dang line: Thin Mints, Tag-a-Longs and especially those lovely Trefoils. What I got instead was a fat chocolate macaroon which was so rich, so decadent, and so gut-expanding that I immediately forgot about my love of the Girl Scout cookie. And, apparently, that cleanse my husband and I were on. What happened to that? Continue reading

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Gluten-Free NYC: The Best Restaurant Celiacs Should Never Go To

I’m on week two of globe-trotting (or United States trotting, to be accurate) and am now all up in New York City. Since you can’t always be in the perfect neighborhood for those gluten-free restaurants that rock, I found myself in search of a restaurant that simply fit the bill of “easy to meet someone whilst in between appointments.” That restaurant happened to be Stuzzi, in the Flatiron District.

I know, I know, Italian restaurants are basically the worst options for celiacs. However, I was standing outside looking at their amazing antipasto menu and thought I could totally make it work. But what happened was even more amazing, and kind of tragic. Continue reading

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Your Emergency Gluten-Free Go Bag, Explained

So basically, I’ve decided that when you’ve got to get out of your safety zone, and fast, this note is what you should have pinned to your chest. It’s nice, no? Add a few almonds and gluten-free crackers and you could probably survive the apocalypse.

It’s been a cuckoo time here at GIMB, and as I was packing up to leave the gluten-free comfort of my own home, I realized my emergency bag needed to be restocked. Just in case you’re reading this because you’re simply cool, you should know that gluten-free peeps have to travel with their own food. I know, it totally sucks. Especially when you’ve grown up on rest stops and drive-throughs. But then I had an Oprah A-Ha moment and thought, hey, wouldn’t people love to know what one should have in a gluten-free go bag? Of course you would. Ding, ding, ding! There’s a post, right there!

So here are what I believe to be the essentials of snack travel when you’re going into potentially unfriendly territory. Which is to say, anywhere outside your own home that does not include Austin, Texas or the Bay area. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Austin: Frank, Guero’s & The Barley Swine

Wow, people in Austin love beer. When I used to live in Austin I also loved beer. In fact I would say I probably drank more beer in Austin, than in any other city in America. But now that I’m gluten-free, beer is a challenge. Unless you’re in Austin, where gluten-free beer kind of hangs out wherever you wander. In fact, every restaurant I dined in offers a gluten-free beer option. For seriouslys. Which just makes me realize that Austin, Texas has a secret beer agenda and will do everything in the city’s power to make sure people drink beer, at all times. It’s just the way Austin is. So I had to give in, it’s totally not my fault.

I’ve talked about Frank before, because the first time I went there post-diagnosis they already had gf hot dog buns and beer. This is my brother and sister-in-law’s restaurant, but they did this before I was even diagnosed. But now? Now it’s ON. Because this is the menu: Continue reading

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