Weekly Menu Plan – January 4, 2010

BRRRR!!!  I am freezing!  I can’t tell you how much I hate being cold.  I currently have on 2 shirts & a fleece, jeans and wool socks.  My toes get numb, specifically my freakishly long 2nd toe on each foot.  Then, once those are numb, the rest of my toes must feel bad for the others because they join right in.  My nose runs.  My skin is dry.  Ick!  It is 14 today and we are going to be in a heat wave close to the end of the week with temps in the high 20s!  Yay! 

Manda from Asparagus Thin is hosting this week’s gluten-free menu swap with “movie themed food” as the theme of the week.  I can’t think of any movie themed foods that I make off the top of my head.  Well, unless you count tossing microwave popcorn into the microwave or opening up a bag of Skittles.  My BIL makes some amazing kettle corn in a pot on the stove that is just oil, popcorn & sugar.  It is seriously like crack.  You can’t stop eating it once you start.  It is never a good idea to start eating Alex’s kettle corn if you have had even a drop of alcohol.  Last time I did, I think I ate a whole bowl myself.  I really need to learn how to make this stuff, or wait, maybe I don’t.  Hmm. 

Here is our menu for the week:

Sunday- Pei Wei Asian Diner with some friends

Monday- Blackened Salmon, baked sweet potatoes, asparagus & salad

Tuesday-Taco Tuesday – soft tacos, corn, refried beans & salad

Wednesday-Spaghetti with roasted veggies & salad

Thursday-Breakfast for dinner – we haven’t done this in a long time & I have missed it!

Friday-Homemade personal pizzas – kids get to make & choose their toppings, broccoli & salad

Saturday – Aaron & I are going out with friends for my birthday (I am turning 29 again on the 9th ;) )

 

Baked Goods

Bread

Sweet Potato Brownies (a mix I was sent to sample)

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Hope you all have a wonderful week!  Do you do anything special to celebrate birthdays?  Aaron & I try to drag our birthdays out for the weekend or week.  LOL!  We try to pawn on things like chores on others because it is our “birthday week/weekend”.  It seems to work better for Aaron than it does for me.  :) 

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Check out this post from Dr. Mark Hyman MD “Gluten: What You Don’t Know Might Kill You“.  It is very eye opening.  I have always believed that gluten intolerance is way bigger than just Celiac Disease.  This is no surprise since wheat has become so prevalent in processed foods.   Barley malt flavoring is also used in many processed foods to add flavor.  There are other, non-gluten substitutes that can be used in place of barley malt.  General Mills is a good example of a company that has removed barely malt in some of their cereals to make them gluten-free.  Molasses was used in place of the barley malt.  Anyway, please read the article.

 

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Favorite Gluten-free Recipes & Products – 2009

I have spent the last few days looking back over the year.  I wanted to put into one post my favorite gluten-free recipes & products of the year.  I hope that you guys enjoy this as much as I did putting it together. 

I love to experiment with food, if you haven’t noticed.  I love to try to recreate old favorites and I love to try new things.  This year I found some products that were so close to their gluten-filled counterparts.  One of these products is La Tortilla Factory Teff Wraps.  These wraps are awesome.  They don’t crack!  I have used them for sandwich wraps, burritos, chimichangas etc.  They hold up.  Another product is Udi’s Gluten-free Bread.  This stuff is the best gluten-free bread I have ever tasted, hands down.  Their other products are amazing as well – love the pizza crust!  I am very excited that my local health food store, Raisin Rack, will be carrying their stuff soon.  Bob’s Red Mill has a great gluten-free pizza mix out now.  It has quickly become one of our favorites here at home.  I especially like it Buffalo Chicken style. 

Some companies are making it increasingly easier to eat gluten-free.  I think main one that comes to my mind is General Mills.  This year they have really expanded the gluten-free cereal market to include a number of Chex cereals.  They also have the new Betty Crocker line of gluten-free baking mixes.  General Mills has started to use “gluten-free” on the back of their labels a lot more, making things even easier.  I just recently noticed the gluten-free Progresso Soups are now labeled as such. 

Gluten-free pizza used to be hard to find.  Not only was it hard to find a good crust to make or buy, but it was virtually impossible to find a restaurant that made gluten-free pizza.  This year there have been huge breakthroughs on this front.  First, there was Uno’s Chicago Grill implementing their gluten-free crust in all of their locations, nationwide.  Then, we discovered Boston’s Gourmet Pizza.  Boston’s has a larger choice of toppings and the crust stands up a little better than Uno’s.  Finally, we hit the jackpot – Z Pizza.  Z Pizza has an amazing selection of gluten-free pizzas & toppings, not to mention salad, gluten-free beer and gluten-free cookies.  I think that is is my favorite place to eat gluten-free pizza out. 

Moving along to recipes.  Below I have listed some of my favorites from 2009.  I have many more favorites posted throughout my blog from years past. 

Some of my favorite recipes are:

Lemon Bundt Cake w/ Lemon Icing

Cheesy Stuffed Shells

Pistachio Cheesecake

Catholic Potatoes

POM Wonderful Cranberry Sauce

Buffalo Chicken Dip

Blueberry Chia Muffins

Cocoa Coconut Chili

Marinutta Sauce

Coconut Baked Brown Rice

Glazed Chocolate Pumpkin Bundt Cake

Baked Ziti

Chocolate Pumpkin Loaf

Pumpkin Cornbread

Chocolate Covered Oreo Cake

Pumpkin Raisin Scones (vegan, too)

Almond Cranberry Bites

 

Now, one last thing.  A reader contacted me with this nice note about the Chocolate Covered Oreo Cake and sent along a picture to show me hers. 

Kimberly,

I made the “oreo” cake for my step-daughter’s birthday last Saturday and OMG it was sooooooooo good!

Thank you thank you thank you for sharing the recipe!

Tracey

christmas season 016 oreo cake 

christmas season 017 oreo cake

Tracey, thank you for sharing!!  I am so glad that you guys enjoyed the cake!  I would love to try this with a carrot cake!  YUM!! 

 

 

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Honeybaked Ham Gluten-free List

As I was opening my email this morning, I came across a list that was shared on a Celiac group that I belong to.  This was shared by Kara O.  Thank you Kara for sharing this list.  I am sharing it with you all since the holiday is just 2 days away now!  Enjoy those hams!  Makes me want to scrap any turkey plans & get a ham!  LOL! 

 

Food Dairy Soy Nuts Gluten
Honeybaked ham no no no no
Turkey Breast – Roasted no no no no
Turkey Breast- Smoked no no no no
Whole Roasted Turkey no no no no
Whole Smoked Turkey no no no no
Whole Cajun Turkey no yes no no
Roasted Herb Chicken yes yes no no
Pot Roast no yes no yes
Prime Rib no no no no
Beef Wellington yes yes no yes
Peppercorn Beef Tenderloin no yes no yes
BBQ Pork Roast no yes no yes
BBQ Pork Ribs no yes no yes
Rack of Pork Loin Chops no no no no
Apple Cranberry Pork Loin no yes no yes
Sliced Beef Brisket no   no no
Honeygrands yes   no yes
Baked Brie yes no yes yes
Cheese Trio yes no no no
Ham Bone Soup Mix no no no no
Tuxedo Mousse Cake yes yes possible yes
New Orleans Bourbon Pecan Cake yes yes yes yes
Carrot Cake yes yes yes yes
Cheesecake Sampler yes yes yes yes
Pecan Pie yes yes yes yes
Red Velvet Cake yes yes yes yes
Black & White Cheesecake yes yes possible yes
Raspberry Pecan Cheesecake yes yes yes yes
Lemon Cream Cake yes yes possible yes
Cinnamon Walnut Cake yes yes yes yes
Garlic Mashed Potatoes yes no possible no
Green Bean Casserole yes yes possible yes
Cinnamon Apples yes   possible yes
Mixed Veggies     possible yes
Turkey Gravy     possible yes
Cornbread Dressing yes yes possible yes
Broccoli Rice Casserole yes yes possible yes
Potatoes Au Gratin yes yes possible yes
Sweet Potato Souffle’ yes yes yes yes
Cookies yes   possible yes
         

 

There are additional notes regarding the “possible” status.  Possible means that cross-contamination is possible due to other products being produced being produced in the same facility that do contain this ingredient.

So, I hope this is helpful to you guys.  I know that I will be referencing it in the near future because I love Honeybaked Ham!

 

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I don’t know about you, but I need to ask Santa for days with more hours in them!  I have way too much to get done in the next 2 days!  I haven’t even started to wrap gifts yet!  ACK!!! 

 

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Review: Ruby Tuesday

While we were on our trip to Jack’s memorial in Atlanta, we had to eat out several times.  On the way back we stopped for lunch at Ruby Tuesday.   I had eaten at a Ruby Tuesday a couple years back & knew that I could eat a burger & steamed veggies & salad at the very least.  Imagine my surprise when I was speaking with the manager & he knew what I was talking about!  I had started to explain and when I asked him if he knew what I was talking about, he said yes & went on to say that he was going to go print me out a menu of things I could eat.  I inquired about cross contamination, especially after my experience at Cracker Barrel a couple days before (long story short……not safe for anyone following a gluten-free diet).  The manager said that the staff is specifically trained on food allergies & the dangers of cross contamination.  Great news!  You can view the gluten-free and other allergen information here.  I ended up ordering a bison burger with havarti cheese, steamed sugar snap peas & sauteed portabella mushrooms.  I also had a huge salad from the salad bar.  I wish my camera wasn’t buried in the back of the car at the time, but I wasn’t expecting this to be a blogging experience.  I checked out the bar before deciding to order it and had my own dressing with me.  All of the items (mostly veggies) I included on my plate were at the end away from the pasta salads, won tons, croutons & dressings.  Though they did have a couple gluten-free dressings, they were dangerously close to gluten-filled items.  If I had not brought my own dressing, I would have asked for dressing from the back or used the EVOO & vinegar that was out. 

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Now, for the news you have all been waiting for……the winner of my giveaway last week. 

Thank you all for playing.  The winner is……………………………………………..

Liz, on November 3rd, 2009 at 5:39 pm Said:

It would be awesome to have the Denby – Serve! 9.5″ Small Divided Dish for parties or even when friends stop by unexpected. Its beautiful and simple!

 

Congrats Liz!!  Please contact me at: kbouldin@insight.rr.com with your contact information so I can get it to CSN. 

 

 

Blogger Lunch

You will all have to excuse my lack of blogging and/or recipes this week.  I have been struggling to keep up with day to day life with this virus.  While I hesitate to say it, I think that now, after 7 days, I have finally turned the corner & my chest no longer feels as if someone is sitting on it.  I hope I don’t jinx myself. 

Last Friday I had the wonderful opportunity to meet up with an amazing woman, Heidi, from Adventures of a Gluten-free Mom.  Heidi lives in New Mexico, but grew up here in Ohio!  When Heidi contacted me to see if I wanted to meet for lunch when she was in town, I was so excited!  We met at Cheeseburger in Paradise for an awesome gluten-free lunch.  Being the chatty bloggers that we are, we managed to have Jon take a picture of us, but we forgot to take pictures of our food?!?!  What is up with that?  LOL!  The kids had school off that day, so they joined us for lunch.  Heidi was able to pick Jon’s brain a bit, but being the extremely cooperative 13 year old boy that he is, he probably wasn’t as forthcoming as Heidi would have liked.  The kids were well behaved for the time that we were there.  :)  Jon ordered the gluten-free cheeseburger & fries and a salad on the side.  He wasn’t happy with the way his burger was cooked, but that was because I won’t let him order it medium-rare.  Geez, Mom, lighten up already! ;)  I ordered the Turkey Burger with mushrooms, Swiss & avocado on top with a side of fries and a salad.  That was the first time I had fries in close to a year!  Carb loading & fries go hand-in-hand.  Heidi had the Cheeseburger in Paradise (I think) and fries.  She was very pleased to see fries on the gluten-free menu.  Want to see a picture of us?

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Heidi, it was so great to meet you!  Thank you so much for the bottle of wine & green salsa.  One of these days I will be able to drink that wine.  Must stop taking cold medicine first. ;)  Please let me know the next time you will be in town.  Maybe I can make you dinner! :) 

 

 

 

Bits & Pieces

There are a few things I wanted to share before I forgot.  So this post will be some short & sweet notes.

First, Campbell’s has updated their gluten-free information on their site.  You can see it here.  They don’t have any gluten-free soups, but some of the broths are gluten-free.  This list does include their Prego sauces & Pace salsas.  Good to keep on hand.

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Udi’s Gluten-Free Bakery now has online ordering for all of those who don’t live close to any stores that carry Udi’s.  You can see my review of Udi’s baked goods here.

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A wonderful reader, Michelle, sent me a link to Ruby Tuesday’s gluten-free menu.  You can view it here.  I will also be placing a link in the right sidebar under “restaurants”.    Thanks for the great email, Michelle! :) 

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And lastly, why I am not allowed to buy anymore cereal or baking supplies:

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Hehe…I have a bit of a problem.  I see a sale & buy.  I better get busy baking, huh? 

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Tomorrow is hump day!  The week is half over.  Is it cold where you live?  We went from A/C last week to needing coats today!  BRR!!!  It was down right blustery out! 

 

Gluten-free Bites

My gluten-free marathoning buddy, Beth, is the new Columbus Running Examiner!  Go Beth!!  Please stop by & say “Hi” to Beth!  She has some great advice & tips.  Also, don’t forget to wish her luck on her 14th marathon, coming up this Sunday, September 26, 2009.  :)  I did an interview with Beth not too long about about gluten-free training.  

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My Mommy got me an early Christmas gift!  She got me a Garmin Forerunner 305!  I am so excited!  What a great tool to have for my training – not only for the half, but for the full marathon I am planning to run in May.  A special thanks to Caitlin over at Healthy Tipping Point for the recommendation on the Garmin & where to get it for the lowest price. 

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Pure Bars.  The wonderful people from Pure Bars sent me a variety box of their bars to sample.  I had reviewed a few over the past year, but hadn’t tasted all of the flavors.  I have now officially tried the other 3 flavors: Cranberry Orange, Wild Blueberry & ChocChip TrailMix.  My verdict?  They all rock!  I honestly love them all!  If you made me pick a favorite, it would be between the Wild Blueberry & Cherry Cashew.  Make sure to check out Veronica’s Blog.  Veronica is the founder of Pure Bar.  :)   You can find Pure Bars at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods. 

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See my review of First Watch on The Examiner.  What an amazing place to dine gluten-free!  Not to be missed! 

Here are some additional pics from my visit.

Check out this menu:

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Egg white omelette w/ turkey, spinach, feta & tomatoes:

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I have several more reviews coming this week….Manna from Anna’s bread, Country Bob’s and Old Bay Seasoning.  :)  Also, pumpkin spice fans, Hershey’s Kisses has a pumpkin spice flavor out and it is TDF!! 

 

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