Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Celiac Awareness

I was reading a post over at about all the hype in the media about eating gluten free. Both good and bad.  You can read her blog post by clicking  HERE.   
I have a firm belief in getting the appropriate diagnosis from a doctor before venturing into a lifetime commitment of gluten free eating.  It's not easy,  or cheap and it can cause a lot of frustration in social situations. 

So many articles pose the question, "Who should eat gluten free?" 
Well, we eat gluten free because of an autoimmune disease called Celiac.  My daughters intestines literally attacked themselves because of her inability to tolerate gluten.  She was constantly running to the bathroom and spent too much time curled up in a ball with tummy aches.  Especially right after she ate. 

In hindsight I truly believe that she was suffering from the Celiac long before her diagnosis with type 1 diabetes.  They are both autoimmune diseases and one could have triggered the other.  The what-if's play through my mind often.  What-if we had figured out the Celiac and started a gluten free diet sooner?  Would that have prevented her body from triggering the diabetes?  I will never know.  So we just deal with it one day at a time. 

I am ever so grateful for all the awareness for Celiac Disease and the variety of products we are now able to find in our local grocery store.  However, it pleases me most when I hear the correct information given about Celiac Disease. 

I am amazed by my daughter every day by her ability to refuse the yummy cookies, donuts and bread that she used to enjoy.  It is not an easy commitment, but she does it out of necessity.  Not choice. 

This is a video with a song written by a newly diagnosed Celiac himself.  The song made me smile:)

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Mexican Lasagna

1 lb ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can refried beans
2 Tablespoons taco seasoning
1 1/2 cups salsa
1 carton 24oz cottage cheese
Shredded cheddar cheese
8 corn tortillas
1 can sliced olives

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Brown ground beef with onion and garlic.  Drain. Add beans, taco seasoning and 1 cup salsa to meat mixture and heat through. 

Line 13x9 baking dish with 4 corn tortillas (tear one in half).  Spread half of meat/bean mixture over tortillas.  Evenly distribute half of cottage cheese over meat.  Than add cheddar cheese.  Repeat, but before adding last layer of cheese, sprinkle 1/2 cup remaining salsa on cottage cheese then top with cheddar cheese.

Bake for 30-45 minutes or until bubbly and cheese is melted. 

Credit for this recipe goes to 
Except for the olives.  Because I thought, why not put olives on top:)

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Oh WOW!!! 
This recipe is Winner!!! 
The cookies baked perfectly and taste delicious. 
The best part...
No flour needed for these cookies. 

1/4 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 cup peanut butter
3 cups rolled oats (be sure to use certified GF oats)
1/2 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine butter, sugar and brown sugar and mix until creamy.  Add eggs, vanilla, and baking soda.  Mix well.  Add peanut butter and oats and mix.  Then add chocolate chips and nuts.  Scoop dough onto a lightly greased baking sheet about 2 inches apart.  Bake 10-12 minutes.

(credit for the original recipe goes to

Peeling Garlic

This how-to video is so cool it deserved a blog post. 
Have you ever need to peel a bunch of garlic at one time. 
It could be done faster and more efficient than you think. 
Just watch...

Friday, February 10, 2012


I wish I had known sooner, that Zatarain's has so many gluten free options.  I have noticed that most of my previous go-to boxed rice mixes contained gluten so perhaps I just gave up looking at ingredient lists, but I have been determined to find a yummy Spanish style rice to go with our mexican dinners.  Last night we had Zatarain's Spanish Rice with our Mexican Lasagna and it was fantastic!!  I give this product two thumbs up all the way around.  Great flavor, (I did choose to add a can of Ro-tel instead of plain crushed tomatoes), the texture was perfect and the convenience factor was exactly what I needed for my busy night.  It did take a full 25 minutes to simmer, so don't put off making the rice until your main dish is ready like I usually do.  HERE is a link to Zatarain's gluten free products.

Thursday, February 9, 2012


So I am surprised that I haven't blogged about Chick-fil-A before now, because we have always had such a good gluten free experience with them. I have always enjoyed being able to order my daughter a kids meal substituting the nuggets for grilled strips.  But on our last visit, we learned that they now offer grilled nuggets.  I appreciate that they know the process for guaranteeing the strips are not contaminated.  Our local store's manager happens to have Celiac in his family, so he is double aware.  And a big shout out for their waffle fries which are also gluten free!  Even the ice cream is on their list of gluten free items.  Click HERE to see the complete list.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Herb Grilled Skirt Steak

In 15 years of marriage, I have never cooked a flank steak.  I am kicking myself because the meat was so tender and my family loved this recipe.  This will definitely be added to our dinner rotation.  My slab of meat must have been bigger than what the recipe calls for because it took longer for it to grill than 5 minutes each side.  Also, I am currently without a food processor so I chopped up the ingredients and whisked them together old fashioned style.  I will have to put in the request for a new food processor for Mother's day this year.  I served this with twice baked potatoes and a salad.  It was delicious!

7 garlic cloves, peeled
1 cup fresh parsley leaves
1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
2 tsp kosher salt
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp black pepper
3/4 cup olive oil
3 pounds skirt steak (flank)

In a food processor, pulse the garlic until minced.  Add the parsley, cilantro, salt, and pepper.  With the motor running, add lemon juice and olive oil in a steady stream.  Pour over skirt steak and marinate in the refrigerator for at least one hour. 

Remove steak from marinate 10 minutes prior to grilling.  Grill for 5 minutes per side or to desired degree of doneness.  Allow steak to rest 5 minutes before slicing against the grain.

Credit for this yummy recipe goes to