My co-worker asked me twice if I had seen the news about a drug for Celiac’s before I remembered to look online.

The short story is that a new drug, Lazarati will apparently allow those with Celiac’s to eat gluten without having any reaction, by preventing the intestine from getting damaged.  The article notes that Lazarati is not meant as a cure, but rather as a means to “ingest small amounts of gluten without fear of falling ill.”

I would be skeptical of a so-called cure, but since I already use digestive enzymes, which seems to help when I eat suspect foods, the idea of a drug that allows for small indiscretions actually sounds like a pretty nice deal to me.  What do you think?

Read the full article here.

I have a lot of things to write about – a lot of meals I have made and a lot of meals I have eaten.  I have traveled to Asia with minimal stomach issues and I enjoyed a delicious Christmas Dinner, including gluten-free stuffing the entire family enjoyed and gluten-free desserts.

Right now however, time is precious.  My husband is giving our son a bottle and hoping to coerce him back to sleep, but I may be called up at any moment.

This Christmas I was thrilled to recieve Gluten Free Betty Crocker mixes for both cookies and brownies.  Though I know there are many mixes out there (which I rarely use), I am excited to hear that a mainstream company like Betty Crocker is now producing Gluten-Free products.  I have yet to try the mixes (I’ve only had them a day), but when I do I will let you know how they fare.

I always wonder how why these huge companies don’t jump on the gluten-free bandwagon, they surely have enough money to be able to chance it on a new product in a niche market.  I guess these issues need to hit close to home; right on the side of the box it explains why they decide to try out gluten-free.

Not long ago, two of our co-workers found themselves in the gluten free world. Linc was diagnosed with Celiac disease, and Colleen’s family switched to the diet for her son’s well-being.

Their experiences opened our eyes to the challenges families face following the diet. It’s hard to be different, especially when it affects sweet moments with friends and family. No one wants to miss sharing a birthday cake or see their child have to turn down a homemade cookie from a buddy after a game.

We hope we can help by bringing you these mixes for gluten free desserts that look and taste like the treats you’ve been longing to share. Finally, Betty Crocker® Gluten Free!

-The Betty Crocker Baking Team

My mother-in-law bought me these mixes on a recent trip to the states, and I have yet to seem them here in Canada though I am hopeful they will appear soon.  Anyone else tried them? Or seen them in Canada?

Being a new Mom means that pretty much everything in my life has changed; my world is no longer solely focued on me, and I absolutley love it.  My little man is the centre of my world and I just can’t get enough of him.  Of course there are days where I want to tear my hair out, but those days are few and far between.

As a gluten-free Momma, I have of course been researching, reading and contemplating the introduction of wheat and gluten to my son.  I have spoken to the doctor, I’ve read books and I’ve searched the internet, although my doctor recommended I go gluten-free I have not formally been diagnosed with an allergy to gluten or with Celiac’s, so of course that does complicate things slightly.  All that being said, we have decided to wait until my bubba is a year before introducing any wheat products.

To a non-gluten-free Momma that probably sounds extremley difficult, but for me its totally reasonable.  When its time to have toast, he can have Mom’s potato bread, when its time for pasta he can have rice pasta, when it came to baby cereal we stuck with just rice instead of jumping on the barely and wheat train.  Now that he’s over 6 months however, I was a little worried that perhaps rice cereal for breakfast everyday was getting a little mundane.

So after a little research, (Wholesomebabyfood was very helpful) I decided to introduce some Millet to my little man.  It is a natural source of iron, protien and potassium to name a few.  I discovered (like the other grains) you can make your own cereal by simply grinding millet down and cooking it on the stove.  Since I didn’t have any millet grain on hand, I decided to use millet flour.  The first batch was lumpy to say the least, but after  few attempts I had a pretty good system.

Gluten-Free Baby Millet Cereal

Ingredients:

  • generous cup of water
  • scant 1/4 cup of millet flour
  • fruit puree

Directions:

  • Mix together water and millet flour (this worked best in a shaker for protein shakes or a cup with a lid).
  • Put mixture into a pot and heat over medium-high heat, stirring often with a whisk.
  • Once the mixture becomes hot, reduce heat to low-medium and continue to cook, stirring often for approx 7 minutes until the cereal has thickened and doesn’t taste too grainy.
  • Scoop one portion into a dish for your baby to eat right away and mix in some fruit puree if desired.  My little man loves to eat his cereal with pears!
  • The cereal will thicken as it sits, so if you don’t add fruit, you may need to thin with a little additional water, breast milk or formula once it cools enough for baby to eat.
  • Put extra cereal in a container in the fridge or in ice cube trays to be frozen.  The cereal defrosts and reheats well, however it takes longer to heat back up than fruit puree, so I recommend microwaving the cereal briefly (10-15 seconds) before adding the fruit and reheating to the desired temperature.

My baby loves his millet and pears for breakfast, but I was eager to introduce oats as well, so I’ve been keeping my eye out for wheat-free oats at my local health stores.  I can always get some at Choices, I just haven’t made a trip there in a while.  Just this week I excitedly found some Bob’s Red Mill Wheat-Free Steel Cut Oats and although I’ve never had steel cut oats, I read that since they are less processed, they are actually better for making baby food.

September 09 - 281I also picked up some millet grain, my Mom donated an extra coffee grinder that she had and suddenly I was ready to make a healthy whole grain cereal that both the baby and I could enjoy.  I have a food processor, but the coffee grinder is just so much easier for the small quantities that this cereal calls for.  I found this recipe for a millet and oatmeal cereal (akin to cream of wheat) and happily began to create.  We’ve had millet/oatmeal cereal for breakfast the last three days; the bubba had his with pears and Momma had hers with raspberries, flax and honey.  Mmm, Mmm Good!

GF millet/oatmeal cerealnote: the pear puree is just softening up, I do of course mix it all up for him to enjoy!

As and aside, I’ve found that I like to use 2 cups of water (rather than the 1-3/4 cups the recipes calls for) and that more stirring/whisking is required than the recipe alludes to.  All in all an easy and nutritious breakfast!

Millet Porridge on Foodista
Oatmeal Porridge on Foodista

Now that my son is getting a little bit more independent and doesn’t need Mom every single second, I think that I am slowly finding my inspiration to cook again.  Cooking GOOD gluten-free meals takes a little bit of thought and effort, and in truth for the last 6 months, I really haven’t had time for much of either.  Last weekend waffles struck my fancy; I’ve used Bob’s Red Mill GF Biscuit mix and it makes great waffles, and I’ve also tried Ginger Lemon Girl’s Belgian Waffle Recipe.  They were also delicious, but they were a little crispy throughout and not quite as soft in the middle as I would like.  So not only did I decide I wanted to have waffles I decided I wanted to adapt my family pancake recipe to be gluten-free and waffle worthy.

This recipe turned out amazing; my husband gobbled them up uttering compliments all the while telling me I should make a recipe book.  These were absolutely the best waffles I’ve had in ages.  Of course we ate them with bacon and fresh blueberry sauce, the only thing that could have made them better was fresh whipped cream!

As my eczema has been bad lately, and my milk consumption seems to affect my son’s eczema, I have been limiting my dairy products and drinking rice milk.  I made this recipe using half rice milk and half 1% milk with great results – I therefore assume that you could use any non-dairy substitute.  Similarly, you could likely replace my flour mixture with 2 cups of gluten-free flour mix with similar results, but personally I like to custom blend quantities for each individual recipe.  If you try it out with a different non-dairy product or gluten-free flour, let me know how it works out for you.

GF Waffles

Gluten-Free Waffles

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Sorghum flour
  • 1/2 cup Millet flour
  • 1/4 cup Brown Rice flour
  • 1/4 cup Sweet Rice flour
  • 1/4 cup Potato starch
  • 1/4 cup Tapioca starch
  • 1/2 tsp Xantham gum
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
  • 3 eggs, seperated
  • 1-3/4 cups milk or non-dairy substitute
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil

Directions:

  • Preheat your waffle iron.
  • Mix (I like to use a hand whisk) flours, xantham gum, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt together in a medium bowl and set aside.
  • Whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form (this only takes a few minutes in a stand mixer), set aside.
  • Mix egg yolk, milk and oil together.
  • Add dry ingredients to the milk mixture and mix.
  • Using a rubber spatula, fold the egg whites into your batter, adding about a third of the egg whites at a time.  Egg whites do not need to be totally uniform in the batter, we are trying to add extra “fluff” to the batter.
  • Spray your waffle iron as necessary, pour the batter by heaping 1/4 cups and cook according to your waffle iron directions.  These waffles do not puff as much as regular waffles, so you need to add MORE batter than you are used to if you want to get the nice full crispy waffle wells that hold the butter and syrup so well.  Trust me having a tiny bit of spillover while you figure out the exact quantity for your iron is totally worth it.
  • Enjoy!

Gluten-Free Waffles on Foodista

I’ve been saying for ages that I would get back on my horse and starting posting again…it really should be easy.  This blog is about gluten-free food and I eat food every day – so there should always be something to write about, shouldn’t there?

I don’t want this to become a boring list of the foods I ate, but at the same time, when you are starting off a gluten-free diet, it can be infinitley useful to get meal ideas from someone who is living the life.

I am firm believer that a good breakfast is essential to a successful day; that being said now that my little bubba has arrived there’s a lot less time for leisurely meals.  But I always eat breakfast.

Although I’ve given up milk again (except for cream in my coffee) to help ease my sons eczema, I often find a hearty hemp shake made with rice milk a good start to the day.  I am definite fan of the nutiva chocolate hemp shake – made with organic fair trade cocoa, this shake has a rich flavour and a thick consistency.

I have also been enjoying the smorgasboard of jam my Mom and I made this summer, atop gluten-free potato flax bread and peanut butter.  We made strawberry, tayberry, raspberry, blueberry and blackberry freezer jam this summer and if I may say so, it is all delicious!  My top 3 are definitely tayberry, blackberry and raspberry!!

When I was younger cereal NEVER held me – I needed more protein and substance for breakfast.  Now I just have two small breakfasts; one at 6am when I get up with the baby, and a second one when he goes down for his nap around 8/8:30 am.  And when it comes to cereal, my absolute favourite are Nature’s Path Peanut Butter Puffs, but  I also like the Chocolate Koala crisp and Mesa Sunrise Flakes.

Of course I still enjoy a nice hot egg breakfast (when I can sneak one in or on the weekend).  My meal of choice is a fried egg sandwich with cheese and a smear of ketchup on potato-flax bread.  If we are having an “eggs & bakey” kind of morning, I also love some nice crispy bacon or some Lilydale Daystarters chicken or turkey breakfast sausage.  Totally gluten-free, low in fat and absolutley delicious, I always buy a few packages of daystarters for the freezer when they are on sale!

I have always been a fan of oatmeal, and was disappointed to say the least when I discovered gluten-free practically meant oat-free.  Enter Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free oats and Lara’s Gluten-Free Oats (both are available at Choices Markets), however I hated having to make my oatmeal the old fashioned way with a pot of water, constantly concerned that my expensive GF oats were going to burn to the bottom of the pan. I also found the that oats were not ask silky and soft as the instant oatmeal I had become accustomed to.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered that you can cook oatmeal in your rice cooker;  its quick and delicious and fills your kitchen with the warm aroma of fresh oatmeal without the effort.  I followed the quantity instructions on my rice cooker and was amazed at the perfect texture of the resulting oatmeal.  I did worry that the flavours might somehow ruin subsequent batches of rice, but it doesn’t seem to be the case.  The cinnamon flavour does linger a little bit, but when rice is eaten with an Asian dish (as it most often is), the flavour is completely negligible.

Check your own instruction booklet to see if it has a different liquid ratio, or try my recipe below.  Also feel free to adjust the add-ins to suit your tastes: raisins, orange or lemon zest, berries, peaches, nuts, spices, the options are endless.  I quite like adding chunks of peeled apple and mixing them in instead of using the craisins (but it takes more time, and time is a hot commodity for me these days). I’m pretty sure however, that I could get it all setup the night before and then just have to hit “cook” in the morning…

Note: I am out of GF oatmeal right now, but will take a picture just as soon as I get to the store and buy some!

Rice Cooker Gluten-Free Oatmeal

(2 generous servings)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup gluten-free oats
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1.5 cups water
  • handful of craisins

Directions:

  1. Mix oats, cinnamon and salt in the rice cooker bowl (this helps to minimize having all the cinnamon floating on the top).
  2. Add the water and mix well.
  3. Sprinkle craisins on top.
  4. Turn on your rice cooker.
  5. When the rice cooker switches over to warm, your breakfast is ready.
  6. ENJOY! (I like mine with brown sugar and rice milk…mmm!)

I had never had blondies until a few years ago – I never realized that they were basically caramely brownies.  I’m sure if I had known that I would have tried them and definitely made them much earlier in my baking  life.  Since it was one of the last things that I learned to make before going gluten-free, it was something that I definitely wanted to add to my repetoire of gluten-free baking skills.

If you, like myself, have a bit of a chocolate addiction these Blondies are for you.  Although the delightful caramel richness of blondies should be enough on their own, the truth is I needed the chocolate too.  You could mix things up and replace some of the chocolate chips – the original recipe ALSO called for walnuts, pecans and peanut butter chips, but I voted for all semi-sweet chocolate chips.   I would like to note however, this particular recipe is NOT for you if you are watching your waistline…its full of butter, sugar and all the things that make baked goods so mmm mmm good!

GF chocolate chip blondies

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Blondies
(Adapted from 500 Best Cookies, Bars & Squares by Esther Brody)

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup sorghum flour
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/4 cup millet flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/4 cup potato starch
  • 1 tsp xantham gum
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2/3 cup butter
  • 2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups of semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and lightly grease a 9×13 pan.
  2. Whisk the first 8 ingredients together and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl beat the butter and brown sugar until smooth and creamy.
  4. Add eggs, one at a time, to wet ingredients, beating until incorporated.
  5. Stir vanilla into the wet ingredients.
  6. Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix.
  7. Stir chocolate chips into batter – it will be quite thick.
  8. Spread batter evenly into prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes, until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  9. Allow pan to cool completley on a wire rack before cutting.
  10. Enjoy – and try not to eat too much at once!

My doctor instructed me to try a Gluten free diet today.

Gluten is in wheat.

Wheat is in nearly everything.

AWESOME! *sarcasm intended*