Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Send Me Gluten Free

Sick of spending money on a big box of a new gluten free treat only to find you don't like it? Send me gluten free might be for you! This is a monthly subscription that sends you a box of gluten free samples. I signed up to do a review of the box in exchange for a free monthly box. My baby decided to make her grand entrance in January hence the late review, but now that I have mastered one hand typing, I am finally getting around to it.

Here is what came in my January box!

-Saffron Road Moroccon Tangine simmer sauce
I have never cooked with a product like this but my husband loves it when I try new recipes so I am excited to try this!
-Milton's cheddar cheese baked crackers
I personally wasn't a huge fan of these. They are kind of bland and not sweet at all. But you take what you can get in the gluten free world.
-Tummy Zen heartburn relief
Being subject to heartburn I am very excited about this! It did say to ask your doctor if you are pregnant so I haven't tried it yet but now that I'm not pregnant anymore I will run to this next time I'm having heartburn.
-Wildtree taco seasoning
While I haven't tried this particular one, my mom has always been a big fan of wildtree. They have very natural whole ingredients and until now I didn't know this but they are gluten free! It is tricky to find a gluten free taco seasoning so it will be nice to have this on hand.
-Nurturme nurturmeals baby food
As soon as my little girl is old enough we are breaking this out!
-Free For All Kitchen oil sea salt crackers
Excited to try these, it is always nice to have a cracker to munch on
-Detour Smart oatmeal bar
This was actually pretty tasty. A very dense oatmeal bar with a yummy blueberry flavor! I particularly liked the yogurt drizzle on top
-Ola granola
If you are a fan of plain granola without all the weird grains and crasons in it then this is for you!
-Enjoy Life Sugar Cookie (not pictured... But it was yummy!)
I really like this brand of cookie, I have never been disappointed.

Plus lots of coupons for more products!

Check out Send Me Gluten Free to order your box today!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Morning Sickness and Celiacs, Glutino to the Rescue!

Being pregnant has been a whole new adventure for me. Being pregnant and not being able to eat gluten has been a whole new CHALLENGE! Morning sickness hit me hard in the first trimester so of course I turned to the internet for suggestions. What was everyone eating? Saltines! The plainness of them sang to my heart and I was devastated I couldn't indulge. Then. I discovered Glutino table crackers. Life saver!!! I had yet to find a GF cracker that I loved. Heck, I even tried making my own crackers once. Let's just say it was a classic Pinterest meme: NAILED IT!

They have already been such a great addition to my kitchen. Once I discovered I could eat the Kroger version of bean with bacon soup (a childhood favorite), I had to have crackers to go with it! These did the trick.
Last night my wonderful husband, who tends to my pregnancy needs so well, made a delicious meatloaf. Of course it called for crackers and these worked perfect!
In my opinion, these are the best table crackers on the market. I may or may not be able to eat a whole package in one sitting... :)

Friday, March 1, 2013

Buttermilk Pancakes

I have tried a few different pancake recipes and they all turn out... "gluten free" tasting. Not that that is a bad thing but sometimes it's nice to feel like a normal person ;)
This morning as I was looking through my trusty 1000 Gluten Free Recipes by Carol Fenster recipe book, I found a recipe for buttermilk pancakes. I almost went right past it to the "regular" pancakes because psh, I don't have buttermilk in my bare fridge. I decided to take a look though and it had a recipe to make buttermilk! I didn't know this was even possible and I happened to have the ingredients.

Buttermilk Recipe:
1 T cider vinegar
1 C milk

That's it! Beautiful. The pancake recipe calls for 1/2 C buttermilk so I halved the recipe.
Put the vinegar in a measuring cup then whisk in the milk. Let stand for 10 minutes to thicken slightly.

1 C Carol's sorghum blend (I added another tablespoon at the end to make it thicker)
2 T sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp xanthan gun (I almost forgot this ingredient... I trust you're smarter than me:) )
1/2 C buttermilk
2 T unsalted butter (usually I have the salted kind but my wonderful husband did the grocery shopping this week and didn't know the difference and bought the unsalted kind. Turned out good in the end!)
1 large egg
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

In a mixing bowl, whisk together sorghum blend, sugar, baking powder, salt, and xanthan gum. Then add buttermilk, butter, egg, and vanilla. Mix together until fully blended. Then let the mixture sit for 5 minutes to fully mix. Then check for consistency. This is where I added an extra tablespoon of sorghum blend. If it is too thick, add a little milk. You want it to run a little when poured into pan but not too much.

Pour into pan. I am obviously not all about making my food look beautiful... as long as it tastes good, I'm happy!

You'll want to flip it when it gets little bubbles on the surface. You can also use your spatula to lift a side and see how the bottom looks.

I like mine with butter and warm maple syrup. I'm sure other toppings would also be delicious!

Look how fluffy this is! If you often cook gluten free you know this is not common. 


Told you I always burn things. Word to the wise, don't blog and cook at the same time. :D

I thoroughly enjoyed these pancakes and I hope you will too :)

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Special Pizza and a Special Chick Flick

My cute husband is on the elder's quorum activities comity and he planned a pizza, guy movie night for this month's activity. So here I am home alone and craving pizza. So what do I do? Find a way to make it "special" so I can eat it :)

First I would like to give a shout out to this awesome book I discovered! This is where tonight's yummy pizza crust recipe came from. It is called 1000 Gluten Free Recipes, by Carol Fenster.

I found it on Amazon and I about had a heart attack I was so excited! I couldn't wait for it to come in the mail. However, I soon discovered that she uses sorghum in just about all of her recipes and seeing how my pantry is still small, I had to hurry and get online and order some right away. Then after more waiting, it finally arrived.

Ok now back to the pizza. I'll have you know that as I type I am eating this pizza and it is delish! If you don't believe me take a look at my computer keys... getting a little greasy, oops! I am already picking out flaws in my cooking so maybe I can point them out and you can have a little more success in the kitchen. (This cook book uses a blend of sorghum and other flours so I just have some mixed up ready to go.)

1 T active dry yeast
2 1/2 tsp sugar
2/3 C warm milk
2/3 C potato starch
1/2 C Carol's Sorghum Blend (see below)
2 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp onion powder
3/4 tsp salt
1 T olive oil
2 tsp cider vinegar
Shortening for greasing pizza pan
White rice flour for dusting

Carol's sorghum blend:
1 1/2 C sorghum flour                 35%
1 1/2 C potato starch/cornstarch    35%
             (I use half and half)
1 C tapioca flour                        30%

Seeing how I am a poor newlywed, I don't have all the fancy things like italian seasoning, onion powder or olive oil. I did have some garlic powder though and I sprinkled a little of that in and it was yummy. For the oil I just used vegetable oil, but I am sure that olive oil would be the better option.

The book suggests that if you eat pizza often, you can make a few crusts and freeze them for later. This recipe will make about a 10-12 inch pizza. 
Place the bottom rack of your oven the lowest it can go, and another one in the middle. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
In a small bowl dissolve yeast and sugar in warm milk. Set aside for about 5 minutes. In a mixing bowl, whisk together potato starch, sorghum blend, xantham gum. Italian seasoning , onion powder, and salt. Then pour in yeast mixture, oil and vinegar. Mix until combined. Dough will be very soft.
Generously grease a pizza pan with shortening (I used butter, it's what I had in my fridge). Place dough on prepared pan. Sprinkle white rice flour over dough to prevent it from sticking and press the dough until it is 10-12 inches. Make the edges thicker to create a crust. Mmm I'm a crust girl!

Bake the crust 10 minutes on the bottom rack, until it begins to brown on the bottom, then remove it from the oven. 
Now is the fun part. The toppings!

I am sure a "pizza" sauce would make a delicious topping, however, I use Classico... because it was in my fridge :D. But it was actually pretty good

Then for the cheese! Once again, a pizza blend would be fancy! I'll buy that when I'm rich... For now, it's cheddar baby!

I am also a fan of pineapple and look for any excuse to eat it. This was a pretty good one :)
Yes, I would've loved to put some of the green pepper on it that is in my fridge but that would probably be a little unfair to my husband seeing how he bought it so I would make fajitas.

Bake on the middle rack for 15-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let sit for 5 minutes, then eat up!
Now for my mistakes. I can get really impatient sometimes, especially when I'm hungry, plus I have this fear of burning things (maybe because I do that a lot... *ahem), and I only cooked the pizza for 10 minutes... It was a little doughy. But everyone's oven is different so play with it a little. I think it would also be a lot yummier with the seasonings in it. If you're a plain person, you might just like it without though!

Get creative with your toppings! I hope you enjoy :)

Now I'm going to find a very girly chick flick to watch 

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Cinnamon Rolls!

The other morning I was working and a co-worker of mine came in with the biggest cinnamon roll I have ever seen. My mouth started watering and then he offered it to me. The nerve! It took all my strength to refuse. So when I got home all I could think about was cinnamon rolls. I quickly turned to my trusty friend Google to find a recipe. I ran into an awesome blog! glutenfreerecipebox.com and found the yummiest treat! Check out the recipe. It did take a little while to make them but it was definitely worth it.
I was going to take a picture of mine to post but they did not turn out nearly as beautiful as the ones on this website so I'll just let you pretend mine turned out like hers ;)

Fitting In the Budget

Setting up a gluten free kitchen can get very pricey. Every recipe calls for so many different flours and various ingredients. I have found that the cheapest way to buy ingredients is online. I found this super cute website: Nuts.com It is a family based company and super friendly. Buying in bulk can also get expensive when you have a tiny budget as myself. I have found however, that this is cheaper even if you don't buy the big bulk bags. Plus it comes right to your door! What could be better??

Some ingredients that I have found are essential in my gluten free kitchen are:
White rice flour
Brown rice flour (these are generally interchangeable however some recipes call for a mixture of both so in those cases it's nice to have a little of whichever one you use less on hand)
Tapioca starch (flour and starch are in most cases interchangeable but the starch is cheaper)
Potato starch
Potato flour (potato is the exception, these are different. I buy more of the potato starch because it is used more often. I have a little flour on hand for when needed)
Xanthan gum (pricey up front but recipes will only use a little at a time)
Dry milk powder
Sorghum flour
Apple cider vinegar. This smells nasty but it makes things very yummy!

Then of course the general baking essentials like baking soda, etc.

If there is an ingredient that is only used sometimes in recipes (i.e. millet flour) don't stress about buying everything at once. Get the essentials to make one recipe you use often like bread, then work from there. Every time I make an online purchase to stock my pantry I choose something else like this last order I added potato flour to my kitchen.

Hope this helps!!

Drum Roll...

Last spring I was getting very painful stomach aches. They were so painful I would just lay on the couch all day long. One morning I ate a big bowl of cereal and soon after the stomach ache came on again.
My best friend from high school was diagnosed in junior high, as well as the her mom and siblings, with Celiacs Disease. Her mom had been telling me since I knew them that she thought this is what was wrong with me. So I decided to give it a try. After that one bowl of cereal I knew I couldn't go on like this any longer.
So I cut wheat completely out of my diet. Of course I didn't really know what I was doing so I would often get contaminated. I soon however, noticed quite a difference. My stomach aches left completely. I also noticed that the aches in my legs I had had my whole life had stopped. The doctors always told me it was just growing pains. Told me to take more calcium. But nothing seemed to help until I cut wheat out of my diet. Also my appetite returned. Before, I would spend an hour in the kitchen looking for something to eat and come out with my hands still empty. But now I wanted to eat everything in the fridge! I had energy, I was happier and I felt awesome. I knew I could never go back.

Things were rough at first. I struggled finding things to eat and I struggled with the cost of Gluten Free items. I would be tempted to pick up a burrito or eat a hot roll that the waiter stuck under my nose. I finally feel like I am getting a hold on things but I have needed a little help along the way!

Here I am, a poor newlywed, trying to afford all of the needed ingredients for this diet. So I decided to start a blog. I am not a particularly good cook, I am impatient, blond, and often burn things. But hopefully over time I will improve! Maybe this blog will help me to want to get better :)

Please feel free to comment with your ideas and experiences!!

-Helplessly Trying