Wednesday, November 24, 2010

What's on your Thanksgiving Menu?

I have become quite the slacker on blogging lately. I apologize for that.

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, my favorite holiday of the year!

My menu this year is simple.


Stuffing (made with Udi's gluten free bread this year)

Mashed Potatoes (from scratch)

Gravy (from scratch)

Cranberry Orange Relish (one of my favorites - I grew up in cranberry country and it just isn't Thanksgiving without cranberries!)

Brussells Sprouts (from my garden)

Veggie Tray

Cranberry Fluff (My son Andy's all time favorite)

Raspberry Pie (My husband Dan's favorite - made with frozen raspberries from my garden)

For those of you who aren't familar with Cranberry Fluff, it is so easy to make. Just mix together one can of drained crushed pineapple (the bigger can, not the flat one), one tub of Tru Whip , one package of mini marshmallows (one of the very few times I allow corn syrup in this household is to make this once a year), and cranberry orange relish. Chill well before serving.

What is on your menu this year? Please leave me a comment and let me know what you are eating.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Saturday, August 07, 2010

$10 off - no min. order at

My friend Sharon alerted me to this deal. I just ordered 2 boxes of Panda Puffs and only paid shipping ($3.99). Great deal.

Go here to start saving. is part of

Just click on the gluten free tab to see what gluten free foods are available. Not a lot to choose from, but $10 off no min. purchase is a really good deal.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Coupon for Udi's bread available!

If you love Udi's bread like I do, you will be excited to know that they have a printable coupon on their website for $1 off any product! This is a bricks coupon so you will only be allowed to print 2 per computer - but every little bit helps.

Prints are usually limited so hurry and print your coupons now before they run out of prints.

If you are new to printing coupons, do not copy them - they each have a unique number on them and the store will not get reimbursed for copies.

The link to the coupon is HERE.

Monday, April 19, 2010

We are losing one of our GF Bakeries in the Twin Cities

I know we are still blessed to have Bittersweet Bakery in Eagan and Madwoman Foods in Minneapolis but I am still sad to hear the Cooqi in St. Paul is closing on April 30, 2010.

It is not all bleak news. It sounds like their new products will be more affordable to those of us struggling to afford gluten free foods.

Here is the info from an email that I received from them yesterday:

April 2010 Cooqi News
Dear Friends
I'm sorry to say this is not my usual upbeat email.
We at Cooqi are very sad to announce that Cooqi Gluten-Free Delights will be closing its doors, as of April 30, 2010.
While it has been a joy to provide fresh baked goods to you for the past three-and-a-half years, our retail bakery business model is simply not sustainable, despite our countless loyal customers and the tireless dedication of my employees.
So, heartbreakingly, the bakery is closing.
Yet... the GOOD NEWS is that the Cooqi mission will live on!
Cooqi 2.0 will now be parlaying its most successful products into high quality, whole-grain gluten-free baking mixes that will be available for purchase online and from area groceries and coops within the next couple of months.
Our initial line of mixes - bread, pizza crust, cakes, pancakes, muffins, and baking flour - reflect the most popular items in our bakery. Not only will Cooqi's baking mixes allow you to continue to have the things you love from Cooqi, but you'll be able to make them easily (and more economically) yourself.
I will even show you how to DIY, as I plan to post demonstration videos on our website, taking you through step-by-step how to achieve bakery-quality results. This is all in keeping with my larger vision of providing access for all to delicious, healthy food.
Please watch for our upcoming line of baking mixes, coming in the late-Spring/early-Summer of 2010. I will certainly keep you updated.
In the meantime, stop by the bakery in the next 2 weeks to say goodbye and stock up on your favorite baked goods one last time. We'll try to keep supplies up for this. In addition, I will be sending out an additional email to alert you to last-week liquidation specials.
My deepest thanks for your support and my deepest regrets for any disruption Cooqi's closing may create in your culinary routines. It has been a gratifying and thrilling three-plus years, and we thank everyone who has made Cooqi a part of their life. We are honored to have served the gluten-free community delicious and nutritious fresh baked goods, and to have helped restore the enjoyment of food to people eating gluten-free.
I wish you all good health and good food - and look forward to staying in touch as Cooqi launches anew.
Love and Peace, Judy

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Bourbon Chicken ala Kathi

This dish is a new favorite in our household. I make it at least once a week.

All of the ladies on a bulletin board that I belong to were raving for weeks about Bourbon Chicken so I had to try it also and I'm so glad I did. The original recipe was gfcf except for the soy sauce - which is easy to substitute wheat free soy sauce for - but like every recipe, I tinkered with it and made it my own.

GFCF Bourbon Chicken

20 ounce package of boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs cut in bite size pieces
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 Clove Garlic, crushed or finely minced
1 Teaspoon fresh ginger root, grated or finely minced
1/4 cup juice (original recipe called for apple juice, but I just use whatever juice I have in the fridge at the time - I have used apple, grape, orange and raspberry - all worked fine)
1/3 cup Raw Sugar or Rapadura (original recipe called for brown sugar and you could certainly use that if you don't have raw sugar)
2 Tablespoons Ketchup
1 Tablespoon Vinegar
1/2 cup Water
1/3 cup Wheat Free Soy Sauce
2 Tablespoons Corn Starch
If you want some heat in this, add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red peppers to sauce.

Heat oil in large skillet.
Add chicken and cook until lightly browned.
Mix remaining ingredients in a jar or measuring cup - shake or stir to combine.
Pour sauce over chicken. When sauce thickens and boils, reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.

For extra crunch add 1/2 cup of peanuts or other nuts to sauce right before serving.

Serve over brown rice with a side of steamed broccoli.

Serves 4

Friday, March 19, 2010

Attune Probiotic Chocolate Bars

Probiotics - I think we all know that they are good for us. Research has shown that probiotics are beneficial and even necessary for good gut health. Just google probiotics and there are tons of articles and studies out showing the importance of them.

But, have you had your probiotics today?

I don't always remember to.

And for those of us with gut issues - which is a big reason that many of us are gluten free - probiotics are more important than ever.

I was recently contacted by Attune Foods and asked if I would review their Probiotic Chocolate Bars. I had never heard of Attune Foods before - so I did some research and asked lots of questions. They also have granola and granola bars in their line - but those are not gluten free. Their only products that are gluten free at this time are the chocolate bars. And the only ones that are casein free as well are the 3 dark chocolate varieties. If you are also soy free - which I know many of my readers are - this product is not for you - all 3 of the bars I tested clearly stated that they contain soy.

They generously sent me a sample of each of their 3 GFCF bars to try.
The 3 GFCF varieties are Dark Chocolate, Raspberry Dark Chocolate, and Coffee Bean Dark Chocolate. Here is a picture of them so you know what they look like when you go looking for them in your store.

Here is the Raspberry Dark Chocolate unwrapped. It is small - just two squares. But there is a ton of nutrition and great taste packed into those 2 tiny squares.

Here is the underside of the Dark Chocolate Raspberry Bar - those little bumps are crunchy bits of real raspberries! Yum!

And here is a fuzzy (sorry - I really need a better camera) picture showing the inside of the Dark Chocolate Raspberry Bar - those red bits are real raspberries.

The bars are small, but that is good. Like most women my age I am forever trying to lose weight and chocolate is a downfall of mine. This gives me my daily chocolate craving without too many calories (80 in the Dark Chocolate, 90 in the Raspberry and Coffee Bean varieties).

Finding these in the stores isn't the easiest thing to do. They do have a store locator on their website. Whole Foods is the closest store to me that carries them. Once you locate a store with them, you need to know that they are kept refrigerated - with the yogurt. While refrigerating them prolongs the life of the probiotics, once you buy them you can store them at room temperature for up to two weeks so they are much more portable than yogurt. I suggest storing them in the fridge and just taking them out when you want to pack them in your lunch or consume them.

You can also order these directly from their website.

The taste was wonderful. I love raspberries so I tried that bar first and was not disappointed. I had the dark chocolate the second day and it was also good. I am not a coffee lover so I saved the coffee bean for the last day - and I was surprised to find it wasn't bad at all. Personally I wouldn't buy it but if it were the only flavor available I would eat it and it would be okay. If you are a coffee lover you may find you love that flavor. Isn't it nice that we all have different tastes?

These bars are also a great source of fiber - not many candy bars can say that.

These bars are to be savored and enjoyed just once a day for probiotic health.

All of the bars contain the statement that they are manufactured on equipment that also processes milk containing products, peanuts, tree nuts and wheat. I asked Annelies about that. Her response was: Our bars are made of gluten-free ingredients and every batch is tested by an independent lab to verify that our bars meet the standard of testing less than 5 parts per million of gluten. What this comes down to is that once a year one product is made in the factory that is not gluten-free, so there is very little risk of cross contamination. We put the manufacturing equipment statement on our bars as a way to not only be transparent about our practices because we know celiacs often have to hunt down the conditions in which food is manufactured, but also to help them and people with gluten intolerances make an informed choice. We are currently being evaluated for gluten-free certification. All of our chocolate bars are gluten-free. All of the equipment used to make our chocolate bars has been totally washed down. The reason we manufacture our bars on shared equipment is exactly as you stated- we are a small company and cannot afford to have multiple lines. I think that’s a great goal for us in the future though!

I feel pretty safe eating these bars with the disclaimer on them - please make your own decision based on your own health needs.

Here is a link to a coupon that you can print out for $1 off 4 bars.

If you are just looking for a chocolate bar to enjoy, these bars may be too expensive for you. If you are looking for a tasty way to enhance your health, then Attune may be the product for you.

I like that they are made from all natural ingredients.

Try them and let me know what you think.

Here's to good digestive health!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

Andy wanted some mini Valentine's cakes to decorate. He must have seen some on TV cause otherwise I have no idea where he got the idea. So, being the good mother that I am, I made him some.

I kept it simple.

I mixed up two Betty Crocker gluten free yellow cake mixes and baked them in a sheet pan.

I lined the bottom of the cake pan with wax paper so it would be easy to remove from the pan.

After the cake was cool I cut out mini cakes using a heart shaped cookie cutter.

I sliced the cakes in half and filled the centers with strawberry jam.

Then I pour icing over them (I had them on a wire rack with wax paper underneath to catch the drips).

And then I let Andy decorate them.

Next time I think I will make them smaller - and cut them into squares so there is no wasted cake.

I put the cut away cake in the freezer. I think I will make it into cake balls.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Finally a really good gluten free bread!

This egg salad sandwich is made with a prepackaged gluten free bread. It is soft and untoasted. It was wonderful. I never thought I would ever eat a sandwich with untoasted bread ever again. Now, it has been six years since I had regular bread, but this is most definitely what I remember it being like.

So, what is this wonderful bread? It is Udi's.

I have been hearing talk for some time now about this wonderful bakery in Denver that makes gluten free bread that tastes just like the real thing but it wasn't available here in my area. My local food co-op just started carrying it so I picked up two loaves yesterday. They sell it frozen, but once thawed you store it at room temperature and it is so much like real bread it is nothing short of amazing. They were out of the white sandwich bread so I got the whole grain. I need to go back and get some more because one loaf is almost gone already.

I may never bake bread again. My loaf pans are going to be used a whole lot less for bread now and more for meat loaf and maybe pumpkin bread. And my life is going to be much easier.

My son Andy couldn't wait to try a sandwich - he was so young when we pulled gluten from his diet that he doesn't remember soft bread. He ate the entire sandwich and didn't leave any crusts like he does when he eats toasted bread.

My husband doesn't believe it is gluten free. He is afraid that we will hear that, like the recent scam in North Carolina, that it was all false and the bread really has gluten in it. I don't believe that is the case at all. This bread is baked in a dedicated gluten free bakery that people can actually visit - not like the one in North Carolina where no one actually had an address for the bakery (he delivered only).

If you haven't tried Udi's yet - you really should. Ask your stores to carry it if they don't. You can also order directly off their website. I can't wait to try some of their other products. I have heard that the pizza crust and muffins are equally as good.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Andy Makes his First Pie!

I just have to share these pictures of my 10 year old son making his first pie!

He keeps bugging me that he wants to actually learn to cook and bake, not just help out. He figures if he is going to survive in a gluten filled world without his mommy, he'd better learn!

Today I asked him if he wanted to make a pie (thinking we'd make something fairly easy like Raspberry) and he very excitedly said yes! But it had to be a lemon meringue pie!

He did a really good job. I had to read the recipe to him and I had to walk him through it - and I took it in and out of the oven - but this pie is 98% all his! I am super proud of him.

Rolling out the dough. I had frozen pie dough in the freezer so that part was pretty easy - no mixing. This is the mix from the gluten free pantry.

Squeezing lemons.

Measuring corn starch

Breaking an egg

Stirring - he was mad that I asked him to turn his head so I could see his face!

Beating the egg whites into meringue.

Putting the meringue on the pie. He really liked that part.

Spreading the meringue all the way to the edges so it doesn't "weep"

And there is my proud baker with his finished pie cooling on the stove top!
I'll post my recipe later - just wanted to share the pictures with you right away!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Erewhon Crispy Brown Rice with Mixed Berries

As many of you know, getting breakfast into my child before school is difficult. Really really difficult. He just does not like to eat before 10am and since school starts at 7:45 that is a problem. I found the best way to get him to eat breakfast is to rotate the different foods that I offer him. This is one of his favorite cereals in our rotation.

Erewhon makes several gluten free cereals. Their cereals are also healthier than most and sweetened with things other than high fructose corn syrup. This cereal is sweetened with brown rice syrup and honey. The dried fruits in it (blueberries, raspberries and strawberries) are REAL fruit! And most importantly, it TASTES GREAT!

For more information on Erewhon cereals, visit their webpage. A list of their gluten free cereals can be found here.

If you can't find Erewhon cereals in your local store, carries them here.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Enjoy Life Crunchy Rice and Crunchy Flax Cereals

I am a huge fan of Enjoy Life Foods. It is so comforting to be able to see their logo and know that I don’t have to read the ingredients – I know when I see their products without a doubt that there is no hidden gluten or dairy – it just isn’t there. People who don’t deal with food allergies or intolerances have no idea how freeing that is. The one time you don’t read the label may be the one time that the formula was changed and a food previously safe is no more.

So I was quite excited when Enjoy Life contacted me a week or so ago and asked me if I would be willing to try their new cereals. All they asked in return was that I personally try the products and to give my unbiased opinion so that is what you are getting here.

I received the two free boxes of cereal yesterday. One box of Crunchy Flax and one box of Crunchy Rice.

As usual, my son Andy was super excited to be getting something new to try. I thought these cereals might be a little too grown up for him but he wanted to try them. We opened both boxes and sampled a little right out of the box.

Andy immediately asked for a bowl of the Crunchy Rice with vanilla almond milk. I just gave him a small bowl of it since I didn’t want to waste any and I thought he might be expecting it to be lighter – more like a crispy rice cereal instead of so crunchy. He finished it and had a second bowl right away!

I know my boy though and I knew the true test would come this morning. He often times eats something new really well the first time he has it but then decides he doesn’t like it after all. And it is almost impossible to get breakfast down him before school! So, this morning I asked him what he wanted for breakfast and without hesitation he asked for the *new* crunchy rice stuff. He finished the entire bowl and went to school with a full tummy – let me tell you that doesn’t happen very often. I hope this continues! I don’t care how expensive it is if he will eat breakfast every day.

I ate the Crunchy Flax sprinkled over my soy yogurt and it was really really good. I was surprised. Regular readers of my blog know that I am not just into things being gluten and dairy free but also very into health and nutrition. Flax is such a good food for you – but not one that I consume regularly because I simply don’t like the taste. I have tried to like it but it has to be hidden in foods for me to enjoy it. This was great – the crunchy flax bits were just the right size for yogurt – I sometimes have granola (Enjoy Life brand of course) over my yogurt and I find the granola pieces a little too large and a little too soft. The Crunchy Flax was perfect. I’m not sure if the rest of my family will eat the Crunchy Flax but I most certainly will.

Enjoy Life sent me a press release with the products and now that I have shared my personal opinion with you, I’ll share some of what they have to say about their new products.

It appears that these cereals are new to Enjoy Life but they are not new cereals. Perky’s Nutty Flax and Perky’s Nutty Rice have been around for 25 years. They are now transitioning under the Enjoy Life brand, becoming Enjoy Life Crunchy Flax and Enjoy Life Crunchy Rice. Personally I think crunchy is a better name since there is no nuts in either of the cereals.

Both products are made in a dedicated nut-free and certified gluten-free facility ensuring the quality, integrity and purity of the products. All Enjoy Life products are certified gluten-free by the Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO) and are allergy-friendly. All Enjoy Life products are free of the eight most common allergens (NO: wheat, dairy, peanuts, tree nuts, egg, soy, fish or shellfish).

Crunchy Flax is 100% natural, sweetened with fruit juice and honey, and has 50g of whole grain, 425 mg of Omega-3’s and 6g of fiber per serving. WOW! Tasty and nutritious!

Crunchy Rice is 100% natural, sweetened with fruit juice and honey and is low fat and low sodium.

I haven’t had the opportunity yet to check my local stores for these cereals, but I do see that does have them.

If you want to ask your local stores to carry these – or any Enjoy Life product, Enjoy Life does have a letter on their website that all you have to do is print, sign and give to your local grocer – just as easy as that.

If you are a coupon shopper like me, Enjoy Life also has a printable coupon on their website for 55 cents off any product.

Try these new products yourself and then post a comment and let me know what you think of them.