Category Archives: Celiac Disease

WTF is Gluten Ataxia?

gluten ataxia

Grandma and Tiny E on the farm, circa 2008

Gluten is an asshole.

Those of us who wind up in the pot after a lunch meeting know this, and those of us who came back from the brink of death after going gluten-free know this as well. And after returning from helping to move my mother into a more secure memory care unit in her assisted living facility, I think those who are unlucky enough to suffer from gluten ataxia, really, really, really, know it.

When I first learned about gluten ataxia and connected it to the strange and devastating decline of my mother, I had hope. I did. I now realize that it was too late for that and unlike me, my mom wasn’t going to have a magical recovery simply by following the gluten-free diet.

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Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Chocolate Coconut Pie is Yum

gluten-free-dairy-free-chocolate-pieI love pie, ya’ll. I don’t love making it so much since that whole crust thing gets in the way. But as I’ve said before, and will say again and again and again, if you buy a pre-made gluten-free pie crust or use a gluten-free mix, you can rock that gf pie. Which is what I just did here with this one. Also, I did it without dairy*. What? I KNOW. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Chuck E. Cheese ‘Cuz It’s Chucktober!

gluten-free-chuck-e-cheese

Okay, so this pizza is not gluten-free. But how cute is this????

Happy Chucktober everybody! Oh, you didn’t know that was a thing? IT IS. And I think my kids might have been the first to celebrate at the Burbank Chuck E. Cheese because they were so excited to see us wander in dressed like crazy people. Or maybe everyone at the Burbank Chuck E. Cheese is just way nicer than the one we used to go to in Brooklyn. 100% possible. Get it together, Atlantic Center.

Either way, when my kids walked into Chuck E. all dressed in costume they were greeted like skee ball champions with unlimited tokens. Which, they kind of were. You see, Chuck E. Cheese reached out to me about this promotion going on all over the nation in October—kids wear costumes, kids get 50 free tickets. Tickets which kids can trade for toys and candy that makes them lose their little minds. But I had another reason for wanting to go and write about Chucktober. A reason beyond going home with a ton of Fun Dip.

I’ve written about gluten-free parties for kids before in both my first book, and I also recommend Chuck E. Cheese as a fun gf spot in my upcoming book as well. It’s because of this – Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Hard Rock Cafe?

gluten_free_hard_rock_cafeFirst of all, no, I have no idea why I just ate the Hard Rock Cafe in Hollywood. Okay, I do.

See, my girl wanted a special day with me because I’ve been working like an insane person and she’s been thrown in every camp from here to the border, so she’s all, “Mom. Pay attention to me.” I decided it might be fun and ridiculous to take one of those bus tours around Los Angeles and while we were on said tour, we got a coupon for the Hard Rock Cafe. Lunch was solved. But first, did you know Brad Pitt used to dress up like a chicken in front of this particular El Pollo Loco to sell their wares?

But I’m also going to tell you about the upside.

gluten_free_hard_rock_cafeThat is a naturally gluten-free pomegranate margarita. They do have the booze there at the Hard Rock, because you know, they rock hard. I figured out pretty quickly why the ladies room reeked of vomit when they plunked down those drink menus where you can get like a French press filled with boozy lemonade and for an extra $3 you get 12 extra ounces and shot . . . of whatever. I felt like I was at LAX and my flight was just delayed. But I stuck with just one giant margarita, because I’m responsible like that.

While the Hard Rock Cafe does not offer a gluten-free menu, they do have gluten-free buns for the burger. And as a bonus, our lovely server was in-the-know about the shared fryer so he knew I couldn’t have French fries. Maybe it was because we switched servers in the middle, but one thing did get lost in translation when I opted for the side salad instead of the gluten fries. If you look really closely in that pic above, you’ll see croutons up in that green salad. Sigh. Although, let’s be honest. I was at the Hard Rock Cafe on Hollywood Boulevard ordering a big ass margarita and cheese burger with triple cheese. I was not there for the side salad. This kid, however, was mucho impressed.

gluten_free_hard_rock_cafeI got to share with her my fave story about that time my boyfriend was working at the London Hard Rock and I sent him a mix tape that was so rad they played it there on heavy rotation. Which led her to asking me why they weren’t playing it in the L.A. Hard Rock if it was so good, and I had to explain to her that The Pixies are not what the kids are listening to these days. Still, she learned a lot about KISS that day, which made it all worth it.

So, yeah, maybe avoid the Hard Rock unless they up their gf game. And maybe other reasons.

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Oh Boy, I’m Going Gluten-Free Camping

gluten-free campingWhy do I do this to myself? I believe I’ve made it clear that camping and I are not the best terms. In fact, I’m pretty sure I have uttered the words, “Like hell,” when asked if I would ever sleep in a tent outdoors ever again. This camping trip, however, does not involve tents, nor sleeping on the ground. Also, it seems I will be surrounded by food writers. Which as we know, are the best kind of writers. BECAUSE THEY FEED YOU.

Yep, I’m headed to the super rad food writing conference, Camp Blogaway this weekend to hang out in the hot tub with my fellow food writers. (It’s not really camping if there’s a hot tub, right?) And while I am very excited, of course I’m a little nervous as well. I mean, most of all I’m afraid of not having dessert, which is why it’s almost midnight and I’m up finishing off a mega batch of gluten-free Monster Cookies.

I’m all set, guys. Of course I can live on gluten-free Monster Cookies all weekend, I mean, duh. But there are a few things I’m still a bit scared of up there in the mountains and cabins. Shall I do a countdown? Oh, I think I shall.

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Top 10 Reasons to Go to Ireland with GIMB

Gluten Free Ireland Hi gang! So I’m going to be filling all of you lovely people in about my super fun gluten-free trip to Ireland over the next month’ish. While I can’t wait to regale you of tales of cooking classes, food tours, and all-around good times, first of all I’m going to illustrate for all of you why, exactly, you absolutely must join me in Ireland this October 1st-7th.

Sure, you want a good gluten-free time on vacation without having to constantly worry, “Is this safe? Is that safe? Is that someone making fun of me in the kitchen?” And Custom Ireland and I will certainly be offering this experience up to you in spades. Spades, my friends. But there may be a few things you haven’t thought about yet, but you should.

Here are the top 10 reasons you have to come to Ireland with me:

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My Gluten-Free Responsibility

gluten-free restaurantHey gang o’ gluten-haters.

I hope your weekend was super duper lovely, filled with gluten-free cake. I really do. Me? Well, I’ve been struggling with whether to write this post or not because I always want to be fair. Sometimes even erring on the side of too fair, and facing consequences at a later date. (Looking at you, Loteria.) So I don’t know if not publishing the name of the restaurant is fair (to them), or unfair (to you). Fairness, it turns out, is complicated.

I was, in fact, all ready to write a glowing post about a new’ish restaurant I tried and how knowledgeable the wait staff was, and how excited I was to eat something other than my beloved steak and Brussels sprouts combo when I dine out. So I started writing it, even with a caveat. The caveat being, since I’m still in the middle of a really bad gluten’ing, I’m still getting sick every day, multiple times a day. (And no, the queso was NOT WORTH IT.) So how can I tell if a restaurant is truly safe, if I’m already sick?

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