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Gluten Free Meals and Snacks

This last bit of my schooling has take a lot out of me but I wanted to post some of the meals I have been eating and what I have thought of them:

Meal 1: Frozen mac & cheese  with Ranch Nut Thins, raspberries and grapes. The nut thins are pretty good but they don’t taste like crackers should taste. That’s the first lesson of eating gluten free: nothing tastes as it should. The rice noodles in the mac & cheese were okay but they weren’t the pasta I’m used to. I think once I get used to this diet I won’t care so much that nothing tastes like it should but for now it is annoying.

Meal 2:   Salad. I have been eating a lot of salads. The good thing about this diet is that I like fresh veggies and fruit. My mom loves to tell stories of me eating a head of lettuce and watching TV.  I used to eat it plain but that was when I had the choice. I do miss some of my favorite dressings but you have to do what you have to do and this diet is working so I just go with it.                                                                                             This salad has 1 peach, 1 fuji or gala apple, pomegranate seeds, and raspberries and of course a raspberry vinaigrette. 

Salads are easy. This salad is a chicken and gala apple salad. I loved this one. You get a skillet and put olive oil in it and then you add some garlic powder. Then you add the chicken and brown. While the chicken is browning you cut up the apple and get the bed of spinach ready. Then when the chicken is done you put it on the lettuce and pour the left over oil on top and then add your favorite dressing, mine is a raspberry vinaigrette.

You can really make any kind of salad you like. I usually like a bit of cheese on mine as well. I added a variation to the chicken garlic chicken salad the other day by adding pepper jack cheese. It was amazing!!! 🙂 Be brave. If you like certain kinds of food try adding them to each other and see if they are good. If they aren’t then you have learned your lesson.

Meal 3: A second try at the cauliflower pizza. It was okay. Still nothing like regular pizza and the toppings I chose this time didn’t really go together. I like summer squash but it’s best when other people prepare it ;). I just can’t get it sweet enough. And the artichokes just didn’t taste so great. So see. Sometimes you try something and realize you don’t really like it.

Snack 1: Sweet Potato Chips. I pinned this recipe from my pinterest board. It is originally from a Martha Stewart page. Again they were pretty good but tasted nothing like chips and didn’t look anything like Martha’s. I might try them again to see if I can get the kinks out of the process.

Snack 2:The end resultIngredients for the patties Peppermint Patties. I got these from my pinterest board as well. They are originally from Elana’s Pantry. They weren’t too bad either but you can’t eat them thinking that they will taste like the York kind or that they will look like that or that they will have the same texture. Eating gluten free is about changing your perceptions and your taste buds. Which is probably why I like all the salads. A strawberry is still a strawberry and an apple still tastes like an apple. Eating gluten free is eating in a whole different realm.

Bread: After buying one loaf of gluten free bread I decided to try one of the baking boxes. Store bought gluten free bread tastes a bit like English muffins but worse. I like English muffins once every 3 or 4 years. The bread from the store was rock hard before I put it into the toaster and didn’t improve much once it was toasted. So I bought the box and baked bread on Sunday. It looks like bread, it tastes like bread and it smells amazing. This is what bread should be like. Now it’s not what gluten full bread tastes like but it’s still pretty great. It doesn’t toast very well and I wouldn’t recommend grilling it (I tried to make a grilled peanut butter) but it does pretty great with butter and peanut butter.  And it was pretty awesome today when I toasted it (it toasts but not fully) spread pizza sauce on top, added mozzarella cheese and put it in the microwave for 1 minute. It was like mini pizza and it tasted like the bagel pizza’s mom used to make for us when we were kids.

So that’s all the experimenting I have been doing lately. I have found it is like doing an experiment and have learned to not really care what it’s supposed to taste like and pay more attention to how it actually tastes 🙂

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Gluten-Free Cooking Meal 2

Tonight I tried a recipe that my gluten-free friend Lisa sent me. It’s actually a Paula Dean Recipe 😉

It’s called Sweet Chicken Bacon Wraps. It’s supposed to be an appetizer but I called it dinner.

Needed:

Broiling pan and rack

Nonstick spray (I used coconut)

You need 4 chicken breasts (cut into 1 inch cubes)

1 pound package of bacon (cut into 3rds). I used Turkey Bacon

2/3 cup of Brown Sugar (although I think 1/3 cup would be okay. I had plenty of the mixture left over. If you change it to 1/3 also change the amount of Chili powder you use.)

2 tablespoons of Chili Powder

Mixture: Combine brown sugar and chili powder in bowl and stir

Wrap bacon around the cubed chicken and stick with a toothpick

Dredge (run the picked chicken and bacon through mixture. I also sprinkled the rest on top.) through mixture.

Preheat oven to 350 F

Spray pan and rack with nonstick spray

Put chicken wraps on pan (optional sprinkle mixture on top)

Put in oven for 30-35 min or whenever bacon is crisp. I checked after 20 minutes.

My thoughts:

Amazing goodness! They were so good! They had just enough sweetness with the smallest bit of kick. I think that even my spicy intolerant sister could handle these.

Go ahead and give them a try for yourself. I bet you are gonna love them 😉

My first Gluten-Free Meal that wasn’t a salad

Today I planned out some meals and then went to Trader Joes to get the stuff.

They had almost everything I was looking for but I got frustrated because there wasn’t a Gluten Free section and from what I could tell the Gluten Free stuff was not clearly labeled. I got one loaf of bread (a brand my cousin Tim told me about). I couldn’t find any of the flours I was looking for and all their broth had wheat in it. The most upsetting thing was my favorite liquorice  (in fact my friends and I call it crack liquorice because it is so good) has malt in it so I can’t have it any more :(.

But I got lots of fruits and veggies and I found almost everything on my list with a few exceptions like chocolate chips for baking and paprika (which I was really surprised they didn’t have) and peppermint oil and coconut oil. I have been told that Trader Joes is really good for these things so maybe I was shopping at the wrong Trader Joes.

Anyway, my shopping woes aside. I did get a lot of stuff.

I decided for dinner tonight I would make the Cauliflower Pizza Crust. I found the recipe on this site: http://www.eat-drink-smile.com/2011/04/cauliflower-crust-pizza.html .

It was really easy. The hardest part was shredding the cauliflower. If you have a food processor use it!

It was pretty good. I might make a few adjustments though. Make the round on the cookie sheet smaller if you want a thicker crust and bigger if you want a thinner crust. Also expect it to be like a personal pizza and not something you can share with others.

It was good, not really like the real deal but not too bad. My toppings were: chicken, green peppers, and red peppers. I thought about adding the summer squash I bought but didn’t know how that would go with the pizza sauce. Maybe next time I will make artichoke heart and chicken or some other variation that will be good with a red pizza sauce.

Also the recipe calls for cooking spray. I didn’t have any so I used butter. Don’t do that! It made it stickier which is funny because you use butter for other things. Also I didn’t use the garlic salt (because I didn’t have any) and it was still good.

So my first forte into Gluten-free cooking (and my first pizza that I didn’t make at school or with my mom and that I didn’t by frozen) was a success. I didn’t give myself food poisoning and I know some changes I would like to make for next time.
And it actually tastes pretty good.

I encourage you to give this a try and let me know how it goes for you!

No Milk

I was talking with my good friend, Vicky earlier this week and she said I should try to go dairy free for a month or so. I decided to try it because I have gone dairy free for a week or so but not a whole month. Plus she is a doctor so I decided to give it a shot.

I have been dairy free for 2 days and I’m bored. I miss cheese. I miss butter. I miss bread.

I have salads, chicken and rice. The end.

I have made a pretty good salad

1 fuji apple

3 strawberries (feel free to add more. I’m slightly allergic so more than 3 or 4 strawberries is out of the question for me.)

1 handful of banana chips

5 or 6 black berries

1 handful of dried cranberries

sliced chicken or ham

lettuce/spinach of your choosing

Raspberry vinaigrette

I’m beginning to wonder how many salads I can eat. I have noticed in my ventures to remove food from my diet that pasta and creamy sauces are deadly to my system. So there might be something to the no dairy, no gluten thing. So I’m giving this an honest try.

I have Kaiser trying to find a GI for me to see which must be difficult because I haven’t heard from them since Monday and since they didn’t leave me with a phone number I’m pretty much sitting around waiting for them to get back to me.

So I’m  no dairy and no gluten for as long as I can hold out. If you have recipe ideas I would be happy to hear them.

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