Saturday, November 30, 2013

Our Food Free Advent Calendar

Growing up, I remember having those cute little advent calendars that had a little window that opened for every day of the month, complete with a little chocolate. Unfortunately, most of those calendars don't have gluten free chocolates, so I had to think outside of the box. This is the first year my son has been old enough to really grasp the concept of counting down to Christmas, so I decided to do something different and come up with my own version.

Diabetes Awareness: What Diabetic Bloggers Want You To Know

I've talked before on my blog about the link between Celiac Disease and Type 1 Diabetes, and although we have been fortunate in our family to not be touched by diabetes, some people very close to me have been. This incidence of Type 1 Diabetes in children with Celiac disease is higher than for children without, and I think it's important for all parents of children with Celiac Disease to be aware of this additional risk. I was approached by Dr. Mario Trucillo about sharing this infographic about Life with Diabetes to help bring awareness to diabetes, I couldn't refuse. Created using tips and information supplied by diabetic bloggers, it provides some insight into what those living with diabetes would like the general public to understand about their illness.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Gluten Free Buzz (23)


I hope all my American readers had a wonderful Thanksgiving and for those who are braving the Black Friday crowds, stay safe and be kind!  It's just stuff!

Now that the holiday season is in full swing, I imagine most of the gluten free buzz will be about how to stay safe over the holidays. Here's the latest in research, product development, and headlines about Celiac Disease and Gluten Free. Click the links to read the full articles.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Wordless Wednesday




Batman sweater over Iron Man t-shirt with Captain America socks. Says the Hulk ones make him too angry.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Recipe: Gluten Free Butter Chicken Pasta

I was in the mood for pasta this weekend, but felt like something different. I saw the jar of butter chicken sauce in the cupboard and decided to try something new. I'm glad I did, because I think we have a new family favourite. This pasta has all the rich flavour of butter chicken, but in a pasta! A great way to introduce butter chicken to someone who may not be familiar with it, and a delicious twist on a basic pasta dish. Plus, by using a jarred sauce, this meal comes together quickly.

Monday, November 25, 2013

UNICEF Survival Gifts

The holiday season is upon us, but for some children, gifts are the last thing on their minds. Children around the world are struggling to survive, particularly I areas hard hit by natural disasters, war, poverty, or drought. UNICEF Canada works to help children by providing gifts of survival that can help improve the living conditions of children worldwide. As a parent of two young children, I feel that it's important to teach them about the importance of giving to those in need.

UNICEF has helped make this a little bit easier by coming up with a short 50 second video to explain how we can give gifts even to those we don't know. I've included the video below. I showed it to my 4 year old son and it helped open up a great discussion about how we can help others even from far away. We also spoke about the children in need in our own community, and what we can do to help close to home.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Gluten Free Weekly Menu Plan

This week's menu plan has some new takes on old recipes, but they're all delicious and easy to prepare. I'll be posting some recipes this week. Enjoy!





Monday: Butter Chicken Pasta

Friday, November 22, 2013

Gluten Free Buzz (22)




Welcome to this week's edition of the Gluten Free Buzz! Catch up on the headlines on research into Celiac Disease, new product announcements, controversies, and more. Sit back, relax, and enjoy some weekend reading!







The announcement that the Celiac Sprue Association recognized Omission Beer as being safe for Celiac sufferers caused quite a stir in the GF community this week. Read about the details at CNBC. What do you think?

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Shop Local at the Vaughan Shopaganza!

I always like to support local events and small businesses, so when I was offered the chance to write a post to bring some attention to an event in my area, I jumped at the chance. Just for full disclosure, I am not getting paid or receiving any type of compensation for this. I just think it's a great event for a good cause.



Vaughan Shopaganza is an event that showcases local vendors, with 100% of admission fees going to Hospice Vaughan. Hospice care can be extremely important to those who are terminally ill.

Monday, November 18, 2013

American Medical ID Bracelets & A Contest to Win 1 of 2 $50 Gift Cards

Everyone who visits this site knows that my son can't eat gluten. His school bag, lunch box, and personal items are labelled Gluten Free. Still, I always worried about what might happen when all those labelled items weren't in plain site in an emergency situation?

In addition to my son being gluten free, my husband has a life threatening shellfish allergy, and I am allergic to Penicillin. As adults, we sometimes feel that we can advocate for ourselves. Unfortunately, sometimes there are times when you can't advocate for yourself. A person in anaphylactic shock can't tell others that they're having an allergic reaction,  just as someone who may be unconscious can't let a doctor know that they are allergic to a specific medication. Having a prominent visual reminder can alert someone else to a specific condition or allergy, which can be lifesaving.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Gluten Free Weekly Menu Plan

This week's Menu Plan is going up a little bit later than usual, but I was at the Gluten Free Garage this morning and then watching the Santa Claus Parade this afternoon. Still, dinner got made for the week. Here's what we're eating at our house this week!




Monday: Lentil Soup (Recipe)

Friday, November 15, 2013

Gluten Free Buzz (21)



If you're interested in reading about the latest research, news items, and events in the gluten free and Celiac community, then be sure to check back every Friday for Gluten Free Buzz, where I round up the 5 most interesting and relevant items of the week. Happy Reading!





Thursday, November 14, 2013

GIVEAWAY: Gluten Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread

I announced Nicole Hunn's upcoming book Gluten Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread as November's cookbook of the month a few days ago, and now I'm excited to announce that I have a copy to give away! This book will be released in December, and one lucky reader will be treated to a FREE copy. How's that for an early Christmas gift?

Here's some more info about the book:

Forget everything you’ve heard about baking gluten-free bread. The revolutionary Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread gives you 100 recipes to satiate your crispy, crunchy, and doughy cravings, gluten-freely and on a shoestring budget.

Ours is a bread-obsessed culture. Whether we’re eating it at every meal or refusing to eat it altogether, bread defines almost every diet, especially the gluten-free community that must avoid it completely. But now, thanks to Nicole Hunn, there will be no more settling for the frozen bread in natural food stores or, worse, pretending that a lettuce leaf is an acceptable alternative when making a sandwich. Readers will rejoice to finally enjoy the rolls, muffins, tortillas, naan, pita chips, scones, and breadsticks they’ve been missing—made even sweeter by the price tag.
 

Nicole Hunn is the author of the Gluten-Free on a Shoestring series and blog, which has been featured in the New York Times and MSN Money. She has appeared in Living Without and Easy Eats, and on Sirius/XM Radio and ABC News, among others. She lives in Westchester County, New York.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Summer Fresh Appy Recipe: Holiday Jewel Hummus Stuffed Olive, Tomato & Bocconcini Skewers

 
My Gift Box from Summer Fresh
In October, I was invited to join a group of Ontario food bloggers at the Summer Fresh headquarters to tour the facilities, learn about the history of the company, and try some of their signature and soon to be released products. It's not always easy attending these types of events as a gluten free blogger, because often, there are few options for me to report back on to my readers.

Summer Fresh is different. Gluten free hummus, dips, and salads are a big part of their brand. They also offer a wide selection of lactose free and kosher products. I've been a Summer Fresh fan ever since my son went gluten free and I discovered their line of gluten free products. Their labels are colour-coded and clearly state whether the item is gluten free, lactose free, or Kosher. They also carry a line of organic products.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

November Cookbook of the Month: Gluten Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread

This month's cookbook comes from Nicole Hunn. This is the first cookbook I've reviewed that is entirely dedicated to bread, so we'll see how this goes. I'm a little late getting this post up because last week was a crazy one with my son being hurt, but I've managed to snag myself an advance reader's copy of this title (it comes out in December) and I'm excited to get baking!

Gluten Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread
Nicole Hunn

Forget everything you’ve heard about baking gluten-free bread. The revolutionary Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread gives you 100 recipes to satiate your crispy, crunchy, and doughy cravings, gluten-freely and on a shoestring budget.

Ours is a bread-obsessed culture. Whether we’re eating it at every meal or refusing to eat it altogether, bread defines almost every diet, especially the gluten-free community that must avoid it completely. But now, thanks to Nicole Hunn, there will be no more settling for the frozen bread in natural food stores or, worse, pretending that a lettuce leaf is an acceptable alternative when making a sandwich. Readers will rejoice to finally enjoy the rolls, muffins, tortillas, naan, pita chips, scones, and breadsticks they’ve been missing—made even sweeter by the price tag.

 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Upcoming Event: Gluten Free Garage and an Interview with RonniLyn Pustil

If you live in or around Toronto, there is a great gluten free event taking place this Sunday, November 17th at Artscape Wychwood Barns. The Gluten Free Garage, Toronto's pop-up gluten free marketplace is back for another day. I attended this event in April, and was impressed by all the local vendors and speakers who came out to support the gluten free community. Want to know what my experience was like? You can read about it in my Gluten Free Garage Recap Post .

This event brings together local producers, artisans, and vendors in one place for a day of sampling, learning, and fun. Unlike many of the bigger events, this event focuses on the local, and has more of a farmer's market style feeling, rather than a large convention set-up. It's a chance to get to know where to go locally for gluten free food and information.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Gluten Free Weekly Menu Plan

This past week was a tough one for my family, so I'm looking forward to the new week ahead. This weekend was filled with catching up on all the things I didn't finish during the week, and the menu plan is one of simple comfort foods.

 










Monday: Gluten & Dairy Free Leek & Potato Soup (RECIPE) 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Thursday, November 7, 2013

My Son Has Been Gluten Free for 3 Years. Today I Had My First Meltdown About It

 
 
I hesitated to write this post because I don't want to sound selfish, or callous, or like I'm complaining, but I figure that if I'm feeling this, someone else may be feeling it too.

Gluten Free living has become such a normal part of my life that I somehow completely missed the fact that my son has now been gluten free for 3 years. Quite the milestone, considering he's just over 4 and 1/2 years old. Since the start, I have tried to be positive about his diet because to be honest, I was relieved that we figured out what was making him so sick and that it was something that could be managed. The truth is, yes it required an overhaul of our diets, but natural gluten free food is readily available, so I started meal planning to ensure that my son ate a variety of delicious food. I cleared out the cupboards, researched what it meant to be gluten free, started this blog, and reached out to the GF community for support.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Monday, November 4, 2013

Review: October's Cookbook of the Month Gluten Free Breakfast, Brunch and Beyond

Gluten Free Breakfast, Brunch & Beyond
by Linda J. Amendt

Breakfast is the favorite meal of the day for millions of Americans, but those with a gluten intolerance are out of luck, since many breakfast foods and baked items have been banned from their diet. They must find gluten-free alternatives or go without. For the rising number of Americans who are choosing to follow a gluten-free diet as a healthy lifestyle and for parents experimenting with gluten-free recipes for their families, they, too, are having to do without.
That disappointment will no longer be the case. In Gluten-Free Breakfast, Brunch & Beyond, home cooks will discover a variety of gluten-free recipes for their family’s favorite breakfast foods. From light quick breads, muffins, biscuits and scones to tasty pancakes, waffles, coffee cakes and sweet rolls, this collection of 100 recipes will bring breakfast back to the gluten-free table. A tantalizing array of frittatas, quiches, and breakfast casseroles are perfect for any meal of the day. The recipes in Gluten-Free Breakfast, Brunch & Beyond are quick and easy to make and yield delicious, satisfying results.
Recipes for homemade all-purpose flour, crepe batter, pancake batter, sweet roll dough, and biscuit dough will give every gluten-free cook the basics for creating delicious dishes of their own.
In addition to great recipes, Gluten-Free Breakfast, Brunch & Beyond will provide cooks with the information they need about gluten-free ingredients, including ingredients to include—and avoid--in their diet and preparing and measuring ingredients. Each recipe chapter will begin with tips to help home cooks create great-tasting gluten-free breakfast specialties to serve from morning to night.


Amazon Canada // Amazon U.S.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Gluten Free Weekly Menu Plan

Last week my son fell and knocked a tooth loose, so the doctor prescribed a soft food diet for a while. Not mushy, but just softer on the teeth.  That means that this week's menu plan is full of foods that are easy to eat, but still delicious. This week's recipes are internationally inspired, and full of incredible flavours. I hope you enjoy!







Monday: Thai Curry Vegetable Stir Fry over Rice Noodles 
(I used Summer Fresh's Thai Curry Sauce and poured it over a medley of mixed vegetables. cook the rice noodles separately and add them in at the end.)

Friday, November 1, 2013

Gluten Free Buzz (19)



Welcome to November! I hope everyone's Halloween was great. Mine ended up in the emergency room, but that's a post for tomorrow!

The colder weather has certainly hit where I live, and I'm keeping warm with some hot chocolate. Curl up under a blanket and enjoy the latest headlines, studies, and news related to Celiac Disease and Gluten Free Living.