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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I’ll Never Hike the Appalachian Trail

gluten-free bad newsAnd I don’t mean that as a euphemism. This fact just hit me the other day, and I was shockingly despondent for oh, let’s say, 45 minutes.

I was listening to the NPR, as I do, and this segment came on about hikers on the Pacific Crest Trail being pleasantly surprised by some “trail magic” along their 5-month journey. This trail magic comes in the form of a dude who hits Costco and supplies these hardcore hikers with some much needed sustenance as they make their way into Canada, feet swelling up and toenails falling off.

There is nothing about any of what I just described that I can even kind of relate to. Still, the realization that I could never do any type of endurance activity that required me to be more than 5 miles away from a Whole Foods was kind of a bummer.

These hikers who stumbled across the “Sonora Pass Cafe” were positively orgasmic about the chocolate cake and other goodies a man provides out of the goodness of his heart and his love for hiking. Some hikers were on their last bit of dried foods when they came across the booty, and others simply hadn’t seen normal food for some time. There is no getting around the fact that I would die, right there on that trail.

And it made me start thinking about other limits on my activities given my need for gluten-free food. Because, you guys, if I were starving to death and someone offered me a bagel, it would be the final nail in the coffin. I do not want to poop myself to death because I thought it would be a good idea to “get some exercise” and “be in nature.”

I also realized that I could never be cast on a reality show where you have to band together and make food and stuff for survival. I know you haven’t been watching Utopia, because no one is, but they’ve got a bit of a food problem there. They don’t have a homemade hillbilly raisin wine problem, but they do spend their limited funds on foods that have a load of gluten. I mean, I would go on that show and announce that MY version of Utopia was gluten-free and I would be locked in the chicken pen. But again, no one would watch a reality show where one contestant was locked in the bathroom the entire season. Probably.

You know what else I can never, ever, never do? Let me tell you. In list form. 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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A Celiac Walks Into a Bakery . . .

gluten-free la brea bakeryOh yes, I did.

Look, I know it’s dumb to a) walk into a bakery, and b) expect that one of the most famous bakeries in America would be all, “Oh, you bet. EVERYTHING is gluten-free.” But I was waiting on my kid to finish her Saturday morning class and right down that very street was the incredibly delicious La Brea Bakery. And all up in it’s new digs!

Not unlike that time I was craving burritos and so I went to the burrito place knowing I could not have them, I just walked on into La Brea Bakery like I owned the place. Which I do not. Perhaps I was buoyed by my last trip into the bakery when it was just a lil’ ol’ bakery and they offered gluten-free macaroons. I thought, well, at least they have one thing I can eat. I was also assuming that even if he laughed at me, the waiter would know what had gluten and what did not. This, I was wrong about.

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Gluten-Free New York City: Brooklyn, Beacon & The BEST GF JOINT IN MANHATTAN!!!

gluten-free new york cityWell hello blog readers! You’ve probably noticed a lack of regular posting which (again) I can blame on the book writin’ and a trip to New York that was long and EPIC. I miss that town, and the wonderful people who inhabit it, and it was so much fun to be back for an extended stay. SO MUCH. And one of the best things in the world about my trip is that I did not get gluten’d. Not even once! That, my friends, was waiting for me when I ordered Indian food once I got back to LA. Never stray from your “safe” foods on a menu, people. Never. 

But while I was in New York I ate like a GF Queen (if there was one) and I FINALLY visited the holiest of holy spots, The Risotteria in the West Village. Oh my breadsticks, you guys. You weren’t kidding when you said, “You have to go there. I mean, why haven’t you been there? What is your gluten-free problem???”  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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7 Layer Tamale Dip From Del Real = #RealFlavor

7 layer tamale dipI just hashtag-ed a headline! There is a first time for everything and that was it. Also, a first time for me working with Del Real and creating the most insane party food OF ALL TIME. Yep, this 7 layer tamale dip is coming back during holidays, office parties and anytime I want to shove some amazing down anyone’s throat. And it’s naturally gluten-free, BAM.

But the real deal? SO EASY. This is how you do it with your friends from Del Real. It’s chow time. Continue reading

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