Chicken Tenders (W/ Betty Crocker GF Bisquick)

I’ve heard some mixed reviews over Betty Crocker’s Gluten Free Bisquick mix and have been on the look out for it since it hit the stores.  However, I’m not exactly sure if it is the state of Rhode Island or just the part we live in that seems to have extremely limited gluten-free options.  I’m not just talking about restaurants either…our grocery stores are weird.  At the main chain stores (Shaws, Stop & Shop) they see to not carry the Betty Crocker mixes, or if they do it is very hit or miss. Then you go to Ocean State Job Lot (which is kind of a last chance type of store) and they have the largest selection of Bob’s Red Mill products I’ve ever seen in a store – its HUGE!! (I know I just said this place is kind of like a last chance store, but the expiration dates on the packages are for 2011 and so on!!!) and they also carry my favorite gluten-free pasta for cheap (I think I’ll do a give away soon of that pasta – so stay tuned).

In Portsmouth we have four grocery stores, the two I mentioned above; Shaws and Stop & Shop, and we also have a local store called Clements which carries a bit more gluten-free (or as they call it “natural”) foods and then there is The Green Grocer.  The Green Grocer has the largest selection of gluten-free products in the area however they are so expensive I can’t bring myself to shop there…more than Whole Foods!  With having no job and Bryan being in school full-time, it just isn’t realistic.  It drives me crazy how expensive some of these gluten-free products are.  I do my best to make things at home, but right now what I really want is some bread…a nice loaf of bread! The recipe I had used in the past just keeps failing on my and I don’t own a bread machine so I have been searching for a gluten-free bread recipe that doesn’t require a bread machine (If anyone has one please o please pass it along).

A few weeks ago my dad came down for the day to hang out with Bryan and I and we went to Clements to pick up a few things for lunch.  While there I finally found the Betty Crocker Gluten-Free Bisquick mix!  I picked it up and then put it right back down.  Here’s why:  It is right next to the regular Bisquick mixes which are about double in size – this box is all of 16oz and cost more than double the regular mix.  I always do this in grocery stores, I find something GF and get all excited then debate over it for a few minutes and it drives Bryan crazy so he usually just throws in the our basket which is exactly what happened with the Bisquick mix.  I have put off trying this for a few weeks because I was annoyed to spend that much money on something that I feared I would only get one maybe two uses out of (depending on the recipe).  I gave in tonight and used it to make the “Ultimate Chicken Fingers” recipe that is on the box.  Overall the recipe turned out great and I would make it again for sure.  Even Bryan really liked it. I think next time I will try a different recipe, maybe the pizza crust or even the biscuits…hmmmm

Betty Crocker’s Ultimate Chicken Fingers (W/ Gluten-Free Bisquick)

3/4 cup Bisquick Gluten Free mix

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp salt or garlic salt (I did 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder)

3 boneless skinless chicken breasts (1 lb, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch strips)

2 eggs, slightly beaten

3 tbsp butter or margarine, melted (I used some olive oil)

Heat oven to 450 degrees.  Line cookie sheet with foil; spray with cooking spray (I used parchment paper with no spray)

Stir Bisquick mix, cheese, paprika, salt and garlic in shallow baking dish.  Dip chicken strips into eggs then Bisquick mixture; repeat dipping in eggs and Bisquick mixture.  Place chicken on cookie sheet. Drizzle butter over chicken (Or olive oil).

Bake 12-14 minutes turning after 6 minutes, until no longer pink in center

These chicken tenders came out moist and crispy.  We served them with some home-made sweet potato fries and dipped them in honey (kind of like McDonald’s – but WAY better)

Sweet Potato Fries

1-2 lbs of sweet potatoes

1/2 tspn salt (Kosher)

1/2 tspn Hungarian paprika

12 tspn ground cinnamon

1/4 cup olive oil

1/8 tspn black pepper (optional)

Peel sweet potatoes and cut off the pointy ends (the pointy ends burn quicker when they are baking and the burnt parts don’t taste very well).  Slice potatoes in 1/2 inch strips so your pieces are as close to even as possible.

In a zip lock bag combine the salt, paprika, cinnamon, oil and pepper (if you choose to add it), mix at the bottom of the bag then add the potato sticks.  Mix well so each piece is evenly coated with the mixture.

Bake in a single layer (this should take up on complete large baking sheet) on a baking sheet that has been lined with either parchment paper or a silpat. Bake for 30 minutes (or until there is a light crisp to the fries) turning twice (after ten minutes and then again after twenty minutes).

Blueberry and Raspberry Galette

Fall is almost here. The air is chilly and crisp.  I’m ready to go apple picking in the next few weeks and of course can’t wait to go to the pumpkin patch so Bryan and I can carve them.  This time of year also means lots and lots of baking.  I love having the oven on to help balance out the chill in the house.

Last night I made Bryan some blueberry muffins and today I woke up in the baking mood again.  Seeing as I am still unemployed, what else am I to do besides cook and bake tasty things for Bryan.  Last week I made him a gluten filled apple pie and posted a photo of it on Facebook.  Everyone got all excited because it looked sooo yummy and I sadly had to post under the photo that it wasn’t gluten-free.  Oh but how I wish it was because that pie crust looked so good.  I decided that I would start trying other pie crust recipes and I hope to create a nice flaky one at some point.  I did some searching around for an easy gluten-free pie crust recipe.  I found some recipes with horrible reviews so I stayed clear of those.  I did find one little gem in my searching today – Carrie of Ginger Lemon Girl has a fantastic Easy Gluten Free Pie Crust Recipe on her blog.   Not too many ingredients and I just so happened to have them all on hand.

Even though I was searching for a gluten-free pie crust recipe I had in my head that I wanted to make a galette – a bit more rustic than a pie.  So I made her super simple recipe and decided to cut the dough in half and freeze the other half for another day.  Like I said this was super simple to make and pretty easy to work with.  She even put a disclaimer under the recipe.  When I first rolled it out and tried to lift it on to my baking sheet it all fell apart so I just wrapped it tightly in plastic wrap and put in the freezer for a few minutes to harden just a bit.

*** Please be aware that because the dough does not contain gluten it may STILL tear while you are transferring it to the pie tin. That is OKAY!! This dough is very forgiving and you can simply press the dough back together in the pie tin and even “patch” the dough if necessary with leftover crust! It will “mesh” together beautifully and is very, very forgiving!! ***

I’ve been asked several times today “What is a Galette?”  In simple terms it is a free form pie, but here is an official definition:

Galette is a general term used in French to designate various types of flat, round or freeform crusty cakes. One notable type is the galette des Rois (King cake) eaten on the day of Epiphany. It is frequently garnished with egg, meat, fish, cheese, cut vegetables, apple slices, berries, or similar ingredients.

Ginger Lemon Girl’s Easy Gluten Free Pie Crust

4 ounces cream cheese **
4 ounces (1/2 cup, or 1 stick) butter**
3/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1/2 cup white rice flour
1/4 cup sorghum flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar


*30 minutes before making pie crust, remove butter and cream cheese from fridge and set on counter to soften.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Mix together softened cream cheese and butter. Mix remaining dry ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together. Add dry mixture slowly to cream cheese mixture. If you use a stand mixer this will be easy, and you can slowly combine the ingredients on medium speed for 2-3 minutes until dough forms a stiff ball. If mixing by hand, this may take 5-8 minutes to combine well enough to form into a stiff ball.

You can chill dough if you like, but you can also use this dough immediately. When ready to use dough, place two sheets of a good quality plastic wrap on your counter or table. Place the sheets of plastic wrap side by side, slightly overlapping, to give you enough space to roll out a 9″or 10″ crust. Sprinkle white rice flour on the plastic wrap and place the dough in the center.

Sprinkle additional white rice flour on top of the ball of dough. Then, place a new sheet of plastic wrap on top of the ball of dough (so it won’t stick to the roller) and start to roll out your pie crust starting from the center. Roll out the crust to 1/4″ thickness, or however thick you desire. I actually had enough dough to make a large 10″ pie crust along with a smaller 8″ pie crust. So you could probably make 2 (9″) crusts with this dough if you desired.

Gently place crust in pie or tart shell and bake as directed in your recipe of choice.

I prepared the crust per her instructions.  Then I rolled out half of the dough into a 8 inch circle, sprinkled the dough with a cinnamon and sugar mixture.  Added my berries (1/2 cup of small blueberries and 3/4 cup of raspberries) to the center of the dough and gently started to fold up the sides.  This is a rustic free form pie, so it doesn’t have to be perfect.  If you need to use cold water to seal the dough folds together.  I didn’t need to use water, but did need to patch my dough a little bit.  Once it was all together, I sprinkled the top lightly with sugar and baked at 400 degrees for 40 minutes (if you making a larger galette, you may need to cook it a bit longer).

My Journey

“Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all.”~Harriet van Horne

Today is National Celiac Awareness Day – so what better way to celebrate and spread awareness then to share my own story of my gluten-free journey.

I have always been a food lover.  I love cooking, trying new foods, recipes and even enjoy baking.  I’m much more comfortable with cooking than baking though.  The  reason is, you don’t have to be extremely precise when cooking, but with baking – you better follow those directions and measure accordingly.  Growing up and learning to cook with my Grandmother it was always “a pinch of this” or “a dash of that” – no real measuring going on, plus you could taste along the way where baking you have to (for the most part) wait until you have the finished product out of the oven and keep your fingers crossed that it tastes good. And I was one of those people who would always say – “Thank God I don’t have a food allergy, I have no idea what I would do if I couldn’t eat…”

In June 2008 I was finally diagnosed with having Celiac Disease.  Ever since I was little I had digestion issues and was told I was lactose intolerant and had irritable bowel syndrome so I did my best to avoid cheese.  Mind you I love cheese so my best wasn’t really that great – I continued to eat lasagna, cheese sticks, mozzarella sticks, cheese and crackers, pizza and cheesecake.  Is anyone else seeing a pattern here?  Well it is something that my doctors have missed all of those years – it wasn’t the cheese that was making me have these issues, it was everything I was eating with the cheese!

I had all the symptoms of a person with lactose intolerance and irritable bowel syndrome – which is what I think clouded my doctors diagnoses.  I was very much on the sever end of the symptoms for both of these.  I was always tired (also diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome), and at the age of 15 I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia.  I am now 28 so 13 years ago, it was very uncommon for someone my age to be diagnosed with such a thing. I went to at least five different doctors and it was always the same result “Oh, she is just looking for attention” or “There is nothing wrong with you, it is just in your head”.  I don’t know what 15-year-old would want to be in that much pain, and trust me if you don’t have this, I hope you never are diagnosed with it.  There were many days that I couldn’t get out of bed.  Being in high school, that isn’t a good thing – I missed way beyond the max days of school both my junior and senior year.  I have been on and off of muscle relaxers ever since.  I do my best to stay healthy, exercise and maintain a healthy diet to avoid taking these as much as possible.

Over the past two years since being diagnosed with Celiac Disease I have done quite a bit of reading on the connection of all my previous diagnoses with Celiac Disease – it is pretty amazing that they are all tied together some how.  It made me wonder for quite a while how my doctors over the years could have missed this connection.  But I am not here to dwell on that, I’m just here to share my journey with you.

So what is Celiac Disease?

Definition By Mayo Clinic staff

Celiac disease is a digestive condition triggered by consumption of the protein gluten, which is found in bread, pasta, cookies, pizza crust and many other foods containing wheat, barley or rye. If you have celiac disease and eat foods containing gluten, an immune reaction occurs in your small intestine, causing damage to the surface of your small intestine and an inability to absorb certain nutrients.

Eventually, the decreased absorption of nutrients (malabsorption) that occurs with celiac disease can cause vitamin deficiencies that deprive your brain, peripheral nervous system, bones, liver and other organs of vital nourishment. This can lead to other illnesses and stunted growth in children.

No treatment can cure celiac disease. However, you can effectively manage celiac disease through changing your diet.

Symptoms By Mayo Clinic staff

There are no typical signs and symptoms of celiac disease. Most people with the disease have general complaints, such as:

  • Intermittent diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Bloating

Sometimes people with celiac disease may have no gastrointestinal symptoms at all. Celiac disease symptoms can also mimic those of other conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome, gastric ulcers, Crohn’s disease, parasite infections, anemia, skin disorders or a nervous condition.

Celiac disease may also present itself in less obvious ways, including:

  • Irritability or depression
  • Anemia
  • Stomach upset
  • Joint pain
  • Muscle cramps
  • Skin rash
  • Mouth sores
  • Dental and bone disorders (such as osteoporosis)
  • Tingling in the legs and feet (neuropathy)

Some indications of malabsorption that may result from celiac disease include:

  • Weight loss
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal cramps, gas and bloating
  • General weakness and fatigue
  • Foul-smelling or grayish stools that may be fatty or oily
  • Stunted growth (in children)
  • Osteoporosis
  • Anemia

Another gluten-related condition
Dermatitis herpetiformis is an itchy, blistering skin disease that also stems from gluten intolerance. The rash usually occurs on the elbows, knees and buttocks. Dermatitis herpetiformis can cause significant intestinal damage identical to that of celiac disease. However, it may not produce noticeable digestive symptoms. This disease is treated with a gluten-free diet, in addition to medication to control the rash.

When to see a doctor
If you notice or experience any of the signs or symptoms common to celiac disease, see your doctor. If someone in your family is known to have celiac disease, you may need to be tested.

Seek medical attention for a child who is pale, irritable, fails to grow, and who has a potbelly, flat buttocks and malodorous, bulky stools. Other conditions can cause these same signs and symptoms, so it’s important to talk to your doctor before trying a gluten-free diet.

So with no medicines to try (which I was very excited about, I hate taking pills!) I changed my diet.  It wasn’t the easiest of things to do.  Like I said before I love food and at first I got really nervous that things wouldn’t taste good.  I cleaned out all of my gluten containing food items and brought them to work to give away.  When I came back home I realized I had nothing left!  It was mind-blowing to me where gluten was actually hiding in these food items. Soy Sauce!? Really!! I went to whole foods and about had a panic attack right in the store when I ever saw the prices of everything.  I picked up a few of the basic things and decided that for now I would just eat fresh foods (veggies, fruits, non-marinated meat) and will eventually teach myself how to bake gluten-free.  I searched and searched the web to find blogs, articles, recipes etc.  The first one I came across and is still one of my favorites is Elana’s Pantry.  Reading her site and trying her recipes helped me realized that this isn’t so bad.  You can bake and cook gluten-free and it still look, smell and taste wonderful.

I started this blog shortly after being diagnosed for several reasons.  To keep track of my journey, my recipes (both created by myself and those that I have adapted to be gluten-free), my experiences and to potentially help others that were in the same boat as myself.  It has been an amazing two years.  I have learned so much, yet there is so much more I have to learn (for example how to blend flours to bake with).  Changing my diet and lifestyle to be gluten-free wasn’t nearly as bad as I was first expecting it to be.  I realized I just needed to be creative with my cooking (hence my blog name).  There are so many wonderful recipes out there that are naturally gluten-free or are easily adaptable to become gluten-free, you just need to think outside the box a little bit, be creative and realize that somethings aren’t going to look, smell or tastes exactly the same.  I love it – even if I could eat gluten again, I don’t think I really would (maybe some french bread though).  I have found many great recipes to replace my favorite gluten containing foods. I’m happy, healthy and feel great.  Since eating gluten-free my fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and ibs have been under control.  I rarely get flare ups and it is such a wonderful feeling.  I’m not saying that this works for everyone but for me this diet has helped in so many wonderful ways!!  I don’t have to take my muscle relaxers as much, and for the most part only the weather has affected my fibromyalgia -ahhhhh relief.

I love the huge gluten-free (dairy-free, soy-free, egg-free etc.) community that I have found.  Granted I have yet to meet any of them in person their blogs, wisdom, recipes, funny stories, generosity, and kind hearts have helped me on this amazing journey that I am on. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for being the wonderful people who you are, for sharing your experiences and always sending encouragement along to others.

Along with all of the wonderful gluten-free bloggers out there I have to thank Bryan for being my wonderful taste-tester!  Even though he isn’t gluten-free he eats all the gluten-free meals, snacks and baked goods I put in front of him.  He is truly amazing and the most wonderful man in the world.  I have no idea where I would be without him, he truly is my best friend. (and I am slowly turning him into a foodie).

If you haven’t been tested for Celiac Disease please do so, especially if someone in your family has Celiac Disease!

Here are a few of my favorite recipes over the last two years:

Garlic Basil Shrimp

Baked Shrimp with Tomatoes and Feta

Sweet and Spicy Chicken

Honey Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Mashed Cauliflower

Thai Chicken Soup (Elana’s Pantry)

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Apple Crisp

Bacon Cheddar Scones


Happy Celiac Awareness Day – What are you doing to spread awareness??

Leo’s Ristorante (Bristol, RI) Offers A Gluten Free Pizza Option!

I couldn’t believe it but I actually found a local restaurant (NOT a chain) that not only listed on their website that they have a gluten-free option but they are actually reasonable in price!! If you have Celiac Disease or Gluten Intolerance and are looking for a gluten-free pizza option, go and check out Leo’s Ristorante. Leo’s is located at 365 Hope Street in Bristol, right down the road from Roger Williams University (according to their website, students if you show your school ID you get 5% off!! – wish we saw that before last night). Their over all menu is pretty extensive – starters, soups and salads, entrees, paninis, sandwiches, and of course pizza!  Now this is where the gluten-free option comes in!  You can order a medium size pie (pizza) for an extra .99 which is AMAZING I have seen some places (never went in due to price) that charged up to $20.00 for the same size pizza.  So if you get a one topping pizza at Leo’s you are looking at spending around $9.98!! Bryan and I ate there last night – he had an extremely good-looking burger and in his words “probably the best fries I have had in a long time” and I had my pepperoni pizza for under $20.00. I will be honest it took everything inside of me not to reach over and grab one of those fries!  I did ask in advance if they were fried separately or with other breaded items, and sadly the fryer is shared.

Seeing as we are still new around here, I called ahead and made a reservation for the two of us.  The place is cute, right down town on the main road in Bristol (If you haven’t been there, you should check it out.  Bristol was voted the most patriotic town in the US not that long ago).  We got a window seat (they also have out-door seating), and for people watchers like ourselves, it was a great place to be seated.  The staff was attentive, friendly and well-informed of their products.  Our waitress was great, very friendly and answered all of my many questions and if she didn’t know the answer she asked and came back to us.  We started talking about celiac disease and I handed her one of my business cards, which she gave to the proprietor of Leo’s.

Like I mentioned before Bryan really enjoyed his meal.  My pizza was great too.  The crust was nice and thin with a good crunch to it.  It even held up to the sauce, cheese and pepperoni…so soggy crust – which I think is some times hard to find with gluten-free pizzas. Now that you have all seen the photo above, I will shamefully admit that I ate that entire thing myself!  Eeeek!  But like I said last night, the crust is so thin that really it was like eating three sizes of “normal” pizza.  Needless to say we’ll be eating there again for sure.  Amazingly I didn’t have that “ooh I ate way too much feeling”.

On our way out I actually got to speak with Paul the proprietor for a little bit about gluten fee options.  As of right now they only have two gluten-free options – the pizza that I had (with a ton of topping choices!) and their Polenta with Rabe (Leo’s Polenta fried til crisp and topped with fresh rabe and grilled Italian sausage).  However, Paul is really considering offering some more gluten-free options on their menu.  He was very excited about off of this – eager to learn and grown this customer base.  Like I said before they are the only reasonable priced option around me.  There are a few places in Newport but all very expensive.  I was explaining to him that there are so many dishes out there that are naturally gluten-free (given they are prepared in a “safe” environment).  Most salads could be gluten-free with out croutons and a gluten-free dressing.  I am very excited to see what comes of this.  I would love to see some more options, maybe a Friday Night Gluten Free Special!  I also think it would be great for their business being the only ones around offering such a thing…so keep your fingers crossed!

Another very exciting part about Leo’s is they are using locally grown and seasonal produce – which is so great to see especially around here where there are so many great local products.  We try to go to the farmer’s markets around here as much as possible.  I’m loving our selections of fresh produce, veggies, cheese and even grass fed beef.

Thank you Paul and the rest of the Leo’s staff for a great dining experience!

Betty Crocker – Asian Chicken Helper Gluten Free (Review)

I have always been a big fan of Betty Crocker, especially the cake mixes.  I think my oldest cookbook and the first one I bought myself is my Betty Crocker cookbook.  I still use it and adapt recipes to become gluten free.  I don’t really recall buying the Betty Crocker hamburger helpers or anything really even when I was eating gluten, however I have to say I was pleasantly surprised with the Asian Chicken Helper – Chicken Fried Rice GLUTEN FREE! Both Bryan and I were impressed with the flavor and consistency of it.  We found this at our local grocery store a few weeks ago and it was on sale so we decided to give it a shot – and we both decided tonight that we would buy it again.  I’ll also have to keep an eye out for any others that might be gluten-free to try.  The season packet that comes with it has a great flavor to it and it was almost gravy like which we both really enjoyed.

This made a great week night meal – done in about twenty minutes and requires very minimum ingredients and if you would like you could even add some additional frozen veggies to the mix (add a cup of whatever veggie you might like – thawed, 5 minutes before the end of simmer time):

What you need:

1 lb uncooked boneless skinless chicken breast

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 2/3 cups HOT water (not boiling)

2 eggs

1- Cu the chicken into 1/2 inch pieces.  Heat 1 tablespoon oil in 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat.  Add chicken; cook about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until outsides turn white.  In a small bowl, lightly beat eggs and set aside).

2 – Stir in HOT water, seasoning mix and uncooked rice.  Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally.

3 – Reduce heat.  Cover; simmer about 20 minutes, stirring once, until rice is tender and liquid is mostly absorbed. If not absorbed, increase heat to medium and cook uncovered 2 minutes longer until absorbed.

4 – Increase heat to medium. Push rice and chicken to side of skillet.  Heat 1 tablespoon oil in other side of skillet.  Add lightly beaten eggs and scramble eggs in oil until cooked; remove from heat.  Stir eggs into rice and chicken.  Refrigerate leftovers (if you have any).

Ellie’s Honey-Roasted Sweet Potatoes

One of my favorite chefs on the Food Network (and now The Cooking Channel) is Ellie Krieger.  She is fantastic and her food is healthy!  If you don’t know who Ellie is you should try to catch one of her shows on the previous mentioned channels.  Here is a small blurb about her from Wikipedia:

Ellie Krieger is the host of a show on the Food Network called Healthy Appetite. She is also an author and has written several books on healthy eating.

Krieger was a fashion model during her late teens and early 20s for the Wilhelmina Models agency.[1] As a model she became conscientious of what she was eating, so during this time, she changed her eating habits to be healthier.[2].

Krieger has a bachelor’s degree in clinical nutrition from Cornell University,[3] and has a master’s in nutrition from Columbia University.[4]Krieger is a registered dietitian and nutritionist[5] and was an adjunct professor at New York University in the Department of Nutrition, Food Studies, and Public Health.[1]

Krieger contributes to magazines such as Cooking LightFood Network Magazine and Women’s Health Magazine.[6] Additionally she maintains her own blog.

Back in November a really good friend of mine who works at a Barnes and Noble in New Jersey met Ellie at her store and had one of her cookbooks, So Easy signed for me!  It was such a surprise when I got it in the mail…I use this cookbook very often and have loved every single dish I have made from it.  All I have to say is healthy food and be extremely tasty!  What is even better is I have had no problems making any of her dishes gluten free🙂

I also have an edition of Fine Cooking from June 2009 – Eat Smart with Ellie Krieger (Featuring recipes from her best seller, The Food You Crave).  This magazine is jam packed with her amazing recipes and the other night I made her Honey Roasted Sweet Potatoes.  Normally I boil my sweet potatoes and mash/whip them up with a bit of cinnamon but I wanted to try something new, and I am happy I did.  (You can also watch a video on this super simple, yet extremely tasty recipe here)

Ellie’s Honey-Roasted Sweet Potatoes

– Roasting sweet potatoes concentrates their flavor and leaves them caramelized outside and tender inside.  Coating them with a touch of lemon and honey before cooking makes them all the more flavorful.

3 large sweet potatoes (about 2 pounds), peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the potatoes in a 9×13-inch baking dish.  In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, honey, and lemon juice.  Pour the mixture over the potatoes and toss to coat.  Sprinkle with the salt and bake, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are tender, about 1 hour.  Season with more salt to taste and serve.

(Also these are great re-heated).  I think these will be on our table for Thanksgiving this year. Not to sweet but perfectly flavored and tender.


Hello Everyone

No, I am not currently doing a giveaway on my site however I wanted to take a second to share a few great giveaways that are currently going on.  Click on the links below to read the posts and enter one or all of these great giveaways!

Adventures of a Gluten Free Mom ENDS TODAY!!!! So Enter NOW

Summer of Easy Gourmet Entertaining with Chavrie Goat Cheese

Summer of Gourmet Entertaining with Chavrie (Estimated Value $100):

  • Vintage Wood Chip & Dip from Pottery Barn (valued at $50)
  • Chavrie Fresh Goat Cheese coupons
  • Chavrie’s “For the Love of Goat Cheese “ Cookbook

Cook It Allergy Free – Ends 8/26/0

A copy of Erin Elberson, of Gluten Free Fitness and Wellness, new E-Book  “7 Quick Start Tips for Living a Healthy Gluten Free Fit Life – Without Making Yourself Nuts in the Process”.

Leslie Loves Veggies – Leslie has several great giveaways going on please see some below:

Cuisinart 6-Slice Traditional Waffle Maker – Ends 8/25


  • Bakes six traditional-style waffles
  • Six-setting browning control
  • Red “power on” indicator light and OFF setting
  • Green “ready to bake/ready to eat” indicator light
  • Audible tone
  • Nonstick baking plates
  • Lock-down lid
  • Brushed stainless steel housing
  • Cool-touch side handles
  • Cord wrap
  • Unit stands on end for storage
  • Instruction/Recipe book

Chex Gluten Free Cereal PackageEnds Tomorrow 8/20!!

  • Limited 3-year warranty
  • Chavrie recipes
  • Gluten Free Churros

    First off this is not my recipe it belongs to the wonderful Heidi of Adventures of a Gluten Free Mom (aka Super Mom – in my mind!).

    I can’t remember exactly how we started talking about Churros last night but Bryan was saying how much he loved them but hated that you could really only get them at amusement parks and such.  A light bulb went off in my head and remembered that Heidi had posted a Churro recipe not that long ago.  I went to her page, found the recipe and realized I had everything I needed to make them.  Well I had everything I needed ingredients wise, but the tools, not so much.  I don’t own any pastry bags and or tips but I figured I could do it anyway.  So here I go with my flour blend my sister sent me from Australia (The mixture already has guar gum in it and it worked pretty darn well!! – Thanks Sara).  I followed the directions per Heidi’s blog (see below).  However, instead of using a pastry bag and star tip I used a large freezer zip lock bag and just cut one of the corners.  The first cut was a bit small so I just made it a little bit bigger…better to cut a smaller hole first instead of a bigger one and realizing it was too big and having to use another zip lock bag all together.

    I piped my little Churros onto a silplat lined baking sheet (I didn’t have any wax paper). Heated my oil over medium-high heat (I also don’t have a thermometer!). Mixed my cinnamon and sugar mixture in a shallow dish, placed my first batch of Churros into the pan with the hot oil and watched them carefully (again didn’t know the temp with out a thermometer) and turned them once they became a nice deep golden brown on the first side, about two minutes.  When the Churros were completely cooked, I removed them from the oil and drained them slightly on a paper towel lined baking sheet then added them to the cinnamon sugar mixture to be coated – surprisingly the mixture stuck very well even though the Churros weren’t piped out with the star tip!  I continued this process until all the Churros were fried and coated.

    Gluten Free Churros – Recipe from Heidi of Adventures of a Gluten Free Mom

    1 cup Water

    1/3 cup Butter (I used Smart Balance, so dairy-free Earth Balance will work just as well)

    2 Tbs. packed Brown Sugar

    1/2 tsp. Salt

    1 cup Better Batter Gluten Free Flour (if you use a different GF flour blend, be sure to include Xanthan Gum)

    1 Egg

    1/2 tsp. Vanilla

    Oil for Frying

    Cinnamon Sugar Topping

    1/4 cup Granulated Sugar

    3/4 tsp. ground Cinnamon

    • In a medium saucepan, combine water, butter, brown sugar, and salt. Bring to boiling over medium heat
    • Add flour all at once, stirring vigorously with a wooden spoon. Cook and stir until mixture forms a ball and pulls away from the sides of the pan.
    • Remove from heat. Cool for 10 minutes.
    • Add egg and vanilla, beating well with a wooden spoon.
    • Transfer mixture to a decorating bag fitted with a large star tip. (Note: I first tried this with a disposable pastry bag and the thick dough blew a hole in the side of the bag.  I would recommend using a real pastry bag or even a Freezer Ziploc bag.  For the Star Tip, I used a 1M Star Tip, these can also be found at craft stores).
    • Line a baking sheet waxed paper.
    • Pipe 4×1-inch logs onto prepared baking sheet.
    • Heat 3 inches of oil in a deep saucepan to 375 degrees F.
    • Fry a few logs at a time in deep hot oil about 2 minutes or until golden brown on both sides, turning once.
    • Drain on paper towels.
    • Keep warm in a 300 degree F oven while cooking remaining churros.
    • In a medium bowl, combine granulated sugar and cinnamon.
    • Roll warm churros in cinnamon-sugar mixture to coat.
    • Serve warm.

    Makes about 20 churros.

    This recipe is great…really easy to make and the taste is awesome!!  Thanks again Heidi for posting this recipe (along with everything else on your blog).

    San-J’s Gluten Free Szechuan Sauce (Review)

    My favorite gluten-free soy sauce is San-J’s.  You seriously can’t tell the difference from regular soy sauce and this one, but the best part is they also have a low sodium option.  Here is what their website has to say about their gluten-free reduced sodium tamari sauce:

    Enjoy all the benefits of Organic Gluten Free Tamari with 25% less sodium. Organic Gluten Free Reduced Sodium Tamari is certified by Quality Assurance International (QAI). It is made with 100% soybeans and no wheat. Organic Gluten Free Reduced Sodium Tamari is naturally fermented for up to 6 months. We add no MSG or artificial preservatives. Organic Gluten Free Reduced Sodium Tamari’s fermentation process is different than ordinary soy sauce, giving it unique flavor enhancing properties. Add Tamari to gravies, sauces and casseroles. Use it as a marinade and in stir-fry dishes. Certified gluten free by the Gluten-Free Certification Organization.

    We came across a few of their other gluten-free selections at a store in New Jersey and we picked up the Gluten-Free Szecuan Sauce because we both really enjoy spicy things.  Here is what their website has to say about this Szecuan sauce:

    This hot and spicy sauce will tingle your palate. The complex combination of wheat-free Tamari, spices, ginger, plum and sesame gives San-J’s Szechuan Sauce a balanced heat. This certified gluten-free sauce is perfect for putting a new twist on your favorite chili recipe or stir-fry. For a tasty party snack, coat Buffalo wings with Szechuan Sauce and bake or grill. Even morning meals can be more exciting – add a drizzle of Szechuan to your scrambled eggs for a spicy kick. Look for the Certified Gluten Free logo on the label.

    You can do so much with this sauce.  You can marinade chicken, steak or even some shrimp to grill, saute, stir-fry or even broil.  Yesterday I marinade two good size steaks in this sauce for about five hours or so.  You don’t have to marinade it that long, you can always baste the meat while you are cooking or grilling it.  My dad has let us borrow one of his old hunting grills so I cleaned it all up, washed and scraped the grates (just to be on the safe side!) and decided that we should put it to use.  I am the type of person who will grill in the snow.  I love grilled food, meat, veggies, seafood – you name it!

    Grilled Steak with San-J Szechuan Sauce

    2 medium-sized steaks

    1/2 cup of San-J Szechuan Sauce

    Marinade steaks in the Szechuan sauce either in large zip lock back or in a shallow baking dish (make sure to cover it if you do the second option). Marinade as long as you like.  I prefer to marinade my meats for several hours, or over night for a more intense flavor.  Be sure to turn meat several times during the marinade process to make sure both sides get covered equally.

    Grill depending on thickness and how you prefer your meat to be done (well, medium well etc.).  I prefer mine to be medium rare so I grilled my steaks for about four minutes on the first side and about three to four on the second side because they were quite thick.

    We also had two ears of corn and two sweet potatoes to use up so I grilled the corn (the husks were already off but I would normally have kept the husks on for grilling). I boiled the sweet potatoes up with a half a stick of cinnamon (Bryan loves his sweet potatoes mashed with ground cinnamon) then whipped them up with a little bit of butter, soy milk and some freshly grated cinnamon.

    The best part of this sauce is you really don’t need to add anything to it.  It is perfect just as it is!  Great flavor and spice…we even put some in a little bowl to dip our steak in we loved it that much.  I look forward to trying some of their other gluten-free sauces, marinades and dressings.

    P.F. Chang’s: A Gluten-Free Experience (Review)

    When P.F. Chang’s first released their Gluten-Free menu it was a bit limited, but who was about to complain – those suffering from Celiac Disease actually had options!  I got all excited the first time I went, I could actually look at an entrée instead of a salad with oil and vinegar dressing. If you know me at all I love food but my all time weakness is Chinese food!  I love it so much that when I moved back to the U.S. from living in China one of my first meals was, that’s right…Chinese food!! Now their menu has about 28 items!!! These items range from appetizers, main dishes, sides and even dessert.  And the verity of options is outstanding, chicken, vegetarian, beef, seafood…a little bit of everything.

    I think of all the foods that I have had to “give up” Chinese food is the hardest.  Don’t get me wrong being Italian I love my bread products, I’m a carb girl but in my mind Chinese food-to get those deep, authentic flavors are much harder than Italian food. I try making a few dishes but nothing seems to compare to living in China or even going out to a local Chinese restaurant.  When living in Monterey I found the best family run Chinese restaurant named Full Moon.  These ladies became part of my extended family, I literally at there at least once a week and when they found out I had Celiac they said if I bring in my own soy sauce they cook all my food with that and even go to the extent of making sure the pans they use for my food are cleaned first.  Oh how I miss those wonderful ladies.

    Now that I don’t live there and can’t eat at Full Moon whenever I want the next best thing is P.F. Chang’s but sadly they are about 25 minutes away from us.  I know it’s not really that far and maybe its a good thing that they are in Providence and not in Portsmouth that way we don’t eat there too much.  Bryan and I love P.F. Chang’s gluten-free menu…he even orders off of it so we can share the dishes…now that is true love.  Plus he says you can’t even taste the difference from the regular options. When we go we normally get the same three things (our favorites):

    Gluten Free Shanghai Cucumbers (for our appetizer) – “Sliced, cold cucumbers sprinkled in gluten-free soy sauce and sesame seeds.”

    We loved these and get a large order every time.  These are cool, crisp and very refreshing.  The sauce tastes like a mixture of gluten-free soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar and of course has some black and white sesame seeds on them…so good, give them a try next time!

    Gluten Free Beef A La Sichuan (Bryan’s favorite) – “Crispy beef strips with julienne celery and carrots. Our spiciest beef dish.”

    Yummmy! Since they added this to their gluten-free menu Bryan orders it every time.  It has such a great flavor and the perfect amount of spice which goes great with the cool crisp julienne celery and carrots.

    Gluten Free Chang’s Spicy Chicken (My favorite) – “Lightly dusted and stir-fried in a sweet Sichuan sauce.  Our version of General Tso’s and always a favorite.”

    Normally we order this but like I said above I mixed it up a bit.  It is really hard for me to order something else know that this dish is so good.  I love the spice in the Chang’s Spicy Chicken.  The chicken is very tender and very lightly coated.  I have never been disappointed with this choice.

    (Sorry there is no picture for my favorite dish…but next time for sure!)

    But this time around I decided to mix it up a bit and order a different chicken dish (Bryan was not about to give up that Sichuan Beef).  So I ordered the following dish.

    Gluten Free Ginger Chicken With Broccoli – “Served Cantonese style on a bed of fresh steamed broccoli.”

    Wow…I was impressed with the flavors of this one.  The chicken is beyond tender and good-sized pieces, surrounded by steamed and still lightly crunchy broccoli florets.  The ginger definitely stands out in this dish and we both said it would make a great sauce over other steamed veggies for a vegetarian dish.  And I have to say my favorite part of the dish was the sauce and broccoli.

    They also offer you two different options for rice, either steamed white rice or brown rice.  I know brown rice is great and supposed to be better for you, however I personally feel that Asian food in general should be enjoyed with some white rice, so I always order that with my meal.

    If you have a P. F. Chang’s near you go and try it out and check out their gluten-free menu!!

    Business Cards – A Great Resource

    Yes I am that weird annoying person who takes photos of my food…all the time! At first Bryan would shake his head about me but he has gotten used to it. Not only do I bring my little point and shoot camera with me to the restaurants, I also bring one of my favorite little note books…the moleskines! So whenever we are traveling we are constantly on the search for new places to try, especially cupcakes places.  In the past month or so we’ve been to quite a few places and several of the waiters have seen me writing in my notebooks and hearing Bryan and I talk about the different dishes we’ve ordered etc.  They asked what I plan to do with these notes, and I simply explain that I have my own Gluten-Free blog that not only has recipes on there but when I try new places I write about them.  That last part seems to get their attention real good!  Once they hear that they ask if I have a business card…which I didn’t but now I do!

    Bryan helped design these for me and I think it is a great resource for all gluten-free, allergy-free bloggers to have! Now I carry them with me and hand them to the waiter if they ask or leave it with our signed check.  We also looked up facts about Celiac Disease on The National Foundation For Celiac Awareness’ website to include on the reverse side of the card along with their website.  So here they are:

    Front Side

    Reverse Side

    D.C. Getaway, Hello Cupcake! and Austin Grill (REVIEWS)

    Bryan and I spent last week exploring D.C.  We’ve got a lot going on right now with me moving across the country, us packing up his things so that way we can move to Rhode Island for his law school.  On top of that we’ve got about a million other things going on that have been wearing us down a bit.  We thought a little break might do us so good before we move this weekend and he starts school in two weeks.  This was probably our last opportunity to do something like this for at least a year – if not more.

    We tried to see as much as we could in our four and a half days there and we think we did a pretty darn good job.  We went to the Capital Building, Supreme Court, Library of Congress, George Washington Masonic Memorial, WWII Memorial, National Mall, Lincoln Memorial, Reflecting Pool, White House, Scottish Rite Temple, and as many Smithsonian Museums as we possibly could.  I even got to see Julia Child’s kitchen (you should all go!).   One day was all museums because it was just so dang hot outside we couldn’t stand it any longer.  I think when we left last Friday it was well into the 100’s.  Not my ideal thing especially since I came from 60 degree weather only a week before.  Put the heat aside, we had an awesome time.  I think if we do a trip like that again, it would happen in the fall!!

    We were fortunate enough to get an amazing hotel room with a kitchen in it outside of the city and only a mile from the metro stop.  We cooked a few meals at the hotel just to save money and to have the ease of knowing there wouldn’t be any cross contamination issues.  However for lunch and a few dinners we ate out and found some great places and some that we had been to already and really enjoy like Chipolte (everything but the flour tortillas are gluten-free) and Five Guys Burgers (where everything but the buns are gluten-free).

    I of course was determined to find a cupcake place in DC that had some gluten-free options…sadly I only found one place in all of my searching.  I emailed a few places but they either didn’t get back to me, had nothing on their website or responded and said “sorry, we don’t offer specialty cupcakes”.  I wish that I could have found at least one more place to try, because sadly the one I found was a bit of a let down.  Please read below.

    Hello Cupcake! (Review)

    Hello Cupcake! is just a block or so away from the Dupont Circle Metro Stop, which is very convenient and we found it with no problems.  Cute little place but I feel like I have seen it before…many of the cupcake places around now are starting to look the same with the pink and white chandeliers, either having a pink/brown/white or light blue/brown/white combination.  I hope the next one I find is a bit more different.

    We went inside, looked at the display of yummy looking cupcakes and realized that sadly there was only one gluten-free option, which just so happened to be the same and only option for vegans.  My only choice was a lemon cake with lemon cream cheese frosting.  It sounded light and fluffy and delicious so I ordered my cupcake to eat there, paid my three dollars and was handed my cupcake on a paper doily.  I found that a bit odd…no plate??  I brought it to the table, grabbed a knife to cut it in half so I could see how fluffy it really was.  When I cut it,  fell over on to the table and I lost half of the frosting-extremely messy.  The cupcake was moist but not as fluffy as I was expecting, with a good lemon flavor.  The frosting was way to much…too much lemon, too sweet and too much frosting in general.  The frosting over powered the cupcake completely. I could see this cupcake being served as a cake for a baby shower with a frosting that was a bit less sweet and a little less lemon.

    Needless to say it wasn’t a great visit.  I think if they were to offer at least two gluten-free options and serve their cupcakes on plates instead of paper doilies it would have been a better review.  I had really high hopes for Hello Cupcake! and I am sad to say I was very let down.  I think I talked about it on and off for about two days with Bryan.  Poor guy puts up with so much with me and my cupcakes.

    Austin Grill (Review)

    On this trip I made sure to bring my Triumph Dining Book and there were quite a few great sounding places, but we wanted to try to save some money so we looked at the options that served lunch and dinner instead of just dinner and had either one to two $’s instead of three $’s.  I found this one place called Austin Grill a tex-mex place not far from the Gallery PI-Chinatown Metro stop.  Let’s just say, we liked this place so much…we went back the next day for lunch again!  They offer a complete gluten-free menu that you can find on their website.

    Both days we had fantastic servers, Juan Carols and Erich B. Very knowledgeable about the menus, gluten-free options and even double checked with the chef about onions being in certain things for Bryan.  The service was quick even during the busy lunch hour.  When you are seated they bring over a large basket of warm corn chips with just the right about of salt along with the best salsa I have ever had!! (no lie, its amazing!)

    The first day we went I ordered the Tacos al Carbon – this is probably some of the best steak tacos I have ever had.  Extremely flavorful, moist, juicy and tender.   There are two tacos served with white rice, black beans and sour cream on the side with a little bit of shredded lettuce.  I couldn’t even finish my plate.  On the second day I decided to try some different tacos (even though I didn’t want to, the steak ones were that good).  I ordered the Grilled Chicken Tacos and they were just as tasty.  Nice and moist chicken with great flavor again, served with rice and beans.  The serving sizes are a very decent/generous size for $10.00 and their sweet tea was the perfect sweetness.  We couldn’t get enough of the tea. Bryan loved his gluten-containing items as well! It was really great to see such a large gluten-free menu.  I am craving those tacos al carbon and salsa!

    With a very friendly staff, great portions, amazing flavors, the best salsa, reasonable prices, I would say this place is a must go if there is one around you!  It’s fantastic! Next time we are in DC we’ll be heading there for sure.  Thanks again to Juan Carlos and a very big thank you to Erich B!

    Friedman’s Lunch (REVIEW)

    If you are in NYC and are either gluten-free or not….you really need to try Friedman’s Lunch!!  In my many searches for gluten-free dining options in NYC this place always comes up as having gluten-free options, however today was the first time we tried it.  It’s located inside of Chelsea Market, cute little place with a great atmosphere!  I walked in thinking “this is my kind of place”.  The staff was very friendly and extremely helpful, and the menu-wow!  Talk about options – anything on the menu with an * can be made gluten free…which is almost the entire menu!

    Bryan, his friend Mike and myself spent the day in the City yesterday just wandering around with no real plans and ended up making a complete day of it.  Went to Ground Zero, which is an extremely humbling place.  I wasn’t fortunate enough to have seen the towers while they were still standing but so badly wish I could have.  Then it was off to Battery Park to see the Statue of Liberty at a distance because, little did I know tickets were sold out months in advance. I also got to experience Canal Street for the first time yesterday, no I didn’t buy anything.  It was way to hot to be on a street that crowded so we finally starting making out way to get some food. By the time we arrived at Friedman’s the three of us were starving.

    Some times it can be a bit uncomfortable searching for a place to eat online and then convince who ever you are with to come and try it with you, especially if you have never been there before AND they are gluten-free.  It’s along the lines of telling someone how amazing a movie or book is and they go and watch it and end up hating it. But, I love trying new places with Bryan because he gets to try the non gluten-free items (if available) and give me his opinion on them.  He has gotten really good at this and offers up some great opinions especially if he is trying the gluten-free version of something. Bryan is really great about trying all these new places and new products with me.

    I was so hungry I could have eaten the entire menu and it was nice to see that I had options other than salad. Bryan and I ended up getting the same thing, a B.L.A.T – Bacon.Lettuce.Avocado.Tomato sandwich, his on normal bread, mine on Udi’s gluten-free bread with a side of gluten-free french fries.  Mike ended up ordering the Southwestern Turkey Burger that came with french fries and also ordered a side of their mac-n-cheese (which looked AMAZING).  Both of our B.L.A.T.’s were very good.  The bacon was thick cut (who doesn’t love that?!), the avocado was nice and creamy, not over ripe and again the Udi’s bread held up amazingly.  It was placed in a panini and never got soggy even with the herbed aioli.  Just like Tu-Lu’s each sandwich came with a side of mixed greens that were lightly dressed and a half of a pickle.  The French Fries were perfect.  Thickly cut and crunch but still soft in the middle.  There was no ketchup needed for these.  They were tossed with a little bit of sea salt and some crushed rosemary and sage.  Mike really enjoyed his Southwest Turkey Burger and said the mac-n-cheese was great (sadly couldn’t have tried either).  The staff was so careful there about gluten-free that they originally made his burger with a gluten-free bun (they changed it out for him before even bringing it to the table) but that was very impressive to see.

    When our delicious meal was over I went up to the register to ask them a few questions and the answers and help were beyond what I was expecting.  The staff there is kind and extremely knowledgeable. I asked which bread they used for my sandwich (so I could get it right on here) and the proceeded to tell me what gluten-free bread products they use for all of their meals (see list below).  They also have a print out of where all of their gluten-free products come from. They suggested I come back for breakfast at some point because not only do they offer sandwiches with gluten-free bread (I should note that for gluten-free bread, bagels etc.  they do charge an additional $2.25 but it is well worth it) they also offer bagels, baguettes and pancakes!!

    Here is some information from their website:

    The inviting open kitchen, dark wood tabletops, exposed filament bulbs; chalkboard menus, large mirrors and vintage wallpaper create a rustic setting and a welcoming atmosphere at Friedman’s Lunch. Tryg offers exciting daily specials such as a fresh squeezed juice of the day and an assortment of market sides. Some other menu favorites includes the pastrami reuben, two bean turkey chili, spicy mac n’ jack and 100% ground beef brisket burger.

    Most of the items on the menu are also available gluten-free, an element that was particularly important to Vanessa when establishing Friedman’s Lunch. Having been diagnosed with a gluten intolerance as a teenager, an ailment that requires the elimination of all gluten products from one’s diet, Vanessa needs to be on a life-long gluten-free diet. When Vanessa and Tryg met, they began to experiment with ways of eliminating gluten from various dishes. Tryg discovered that he was able to re-create many classic dishes into delicious gluten-free options. Now they are very excited to offer these gluten-free creations to the community.

    Friedman’s Lunch is open for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner seven days a week. Take-out, dine-in and full service catering are available.

    List of Products

    Everybody Eats Inc – NYC – Baguetts

    Katz Gluten Free – Challah Rolls (used as burger buns)

    Joan’s – Bagels

    Udi’s – Bread for sandwiches

    Next time you are in NYC head on over to Chelsea Market and give Friedman’s a try, I honestly don’t think you will be disappointed.  I hope when you try it you enjoy it as much as we did.  Thank you to their staff for all of their help and information.

    Tu-Lu’s Gluten Free Bakery (REVIEW)

    Tu-Lu’s Gluten Free Bakery is located at 338 East 11th Street (between 1st and 2nd ave) in NYC.  Tu-Lu’s is a cute little shop with a few seats and cute decor to sit and enjoy your tasty treats. We ventured in to the city on Thursday to give it a try.  My main interest in going there was to try their very delicious sounding cupcakes.  While looking at their website a bit I noticed that they also some panini’s on the menu.  Most items on the menu had prices associated with them, however the panini’s didn’t, so we weren’t 100% sure if we were going to actually have lunch there or not.  Once arriving and seeing the selections and prices we decided to do so instead of having dessert first.  Once I read that they use Udi’s bread I got really excited because I haven’t tried any of their products yet and have been wanting to.

    I ended up ordering the “Sliced Roasted Turkey with Provolone & Herb Mayo” panini and Bryan ordered the “Ham and Melted Muenster with Whole Grain Mustard” panini.  Both came with a side of lightly dressed mixed greens and were very delicious.  The bread is amazing-it held up extremely well.  This has been a big thing for me lately when trying new gluten-free bread products is “how well do they hold up in a sandwich” and some of them fail miserably!  But between the Canyon Bakehouse Breads and Udi’s I have been pleasantly surprised.  Both hold up extremely well especially in a panini.

    Next up was what we came for…the cupcake!  I love them (and very picky about them). I ordered the Vanilla Cupcake with  Strawberry Cream Cheese icing and Bryan ordered the Chocolate Cupcake with Vanilla Cream Cheese Icing.  They were very tasty with a good texture.  Not as fluffy as I was expecting, more of a denser cupcake but over all great flavor.

    However, and I hate to write this, but not long after leaving we both had very intense stomach pains.  I’m not sure exactly what it was from but here is my guess.  It has been extremely hot around here and when we arrived and ordered our cupcakes the frosting was melting off.  I was almost hesitant to try it, but when you put a cupcake in front of me, I can’t really resist.  Not because they cupcakes were just out of the oven and not cooled completely but because it was so warm in there and I don’t think their little display case was cool enough or at all.  Many of the cupcakes you could see the frosting sliding off and if they are a cream based frosting…that doesn’t go very well with the heat.  We were both sick for a few hours which was very upsetting because I had very high hopes for this place.  I have ruled it out just yet of this one time so I think when its a bit cooler out, I’ll have to give it another shot.  If anyone else has tried it I would love to hear your review also.

    Gluten Free Gloriously (REVIEW)

    As mentioned in my previous post “Oh the places we’ll go” I kind of mapped out some of the Gluten Free places I wanted to try this summer on our little adventures and after being back east for only a week, we’ve gone to three of them.  The first place we went was Gluten Free Gloriously.  It is a small little place in Central New Jersey that offers gluten-free, wheat free and some dairy free baked goods.  Here is a little blurb from their “about section”

    “I’m a very lucky woman. I am gluten intolerant. Yep, lucky.

    With all the serious illness in the world that requires pills, shots or invasive procedures, all I have to do is eat the delicious foods I prepare to stay healthy.
    Eight years ago I didn’t feel so fortunate when I was told I had Celiac Disease. All I could focus on was what I couldn’t eat, and the substitutes amounted to Styrofoam with an aftertaste. I grieved and cried and then I cooked. I cooked and cooked and cooked some more until I perfected my favorite foods gluten free.
    My tastebuds weren’t the only thing loving my new diet, so were my legs and other muscles. I was able to put my cane aside and walk without, and actually exercise a little. Even after I found I did not carry the Celiac gene, I found gluten was like a toxin to my body hurting my digestive system, my muscles and my nerves so I remained on my delicious path of health. I shared my treats with friends and before I knew it our customer base outgrew our home and we opened our shop at 267 Main Ave in Stirling.
    Our food is designed to taste wonderful to those who only worry about gluten. We use eggs, nuts and butter. We never use artficial sweeteners and rarely use soy. We have developed a few products that are dairy free and those may contain soy, but in general we try not to use it. We simply want people who can’t eat gluten to enjoy eating again! Friends and family who don’t need to eat gluten-free will happily eat with you. We see it time and again.
    Our customers are literally dancing about the store after sampling our goodies and telling us this is the best pizza, bread, carrot cake, apple pie, and so on that they have ever tasted.
    So please, come in, take a bite and join us in living your life “Gluten Free Gloriously!”


    The drive was about twenty minutes, and I would have to say it was well worth it (not like twenty minutes is a long drive) and I’m sure we’ll be going back before we move.  I checked out their website when doing research on places to possibly visit.  It is a bit hard to judge the size of some of their products based on the website (which includes prices for their products!!) so I thought I would just go and see what they had in stock and purchase from there.

    When we arrived we were greeted by their friendly staff and offered samples of different products…I tried the Italian bread and ended up walking out with a loaf!  It was the closest I have tasted to Italian bread so far.  The loaf was a decent size…think small/medium baguette for $6.00.  Normally I wouldn’t spend $6.00 on a loaf of bread, however when living gluten-free you have to come to terms and expect that you will pay more for these items.

    I made two meals with this one loaf of bread.  The first was a hot Italian sausage sandwich with sauce and mozzarella cheese.  I followed the directions on the package of letting it thaw at room temp for one hour…then I lightly warmed it in the oven, added the sausage, sauce and cheese and it was mighty tasty!  The bread held up very well to the sauce, didn’t become too soggy.  The second half of the loaf was then made into garlic bread- this bread is perfect for garlic bread!!!

    If you live in New Jersey I would suggest making your way to Gluten Free Gloriously in Stirling and trying it out for yourself.  I think next time we go another loaf of bread is defiantly coming home with us along with a few other things.  I’m wanting to try their pizza and also their ravioli!! yummm