Monday, July 28, 2014

Grazing

Today was a grazing day through gluten-free eating, and being prepared was critical. My lunch buddies were all otherwise occupied, so I grazed rather than having a proper meal today.

Grapes, almonds, granola, Progresso chicken and rice soup, banana, yogurt with blueberries, popcorn (finished!), and bacon and Swiss sandwich sans bread.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Cinnamon roll fail

I tried the Udi's cinnamon rolls this morning. I followed the directions for preparing them from frozen, but they were too dry and I didn't like them. There are two more in the freezer so I will try them soon after thawing them first and following the thawed instructions. I don't expect them to be much better.

Breakfast: oatmeal with milk

Lunch: Peppers Mexican. Chicken fajitas without tortillas and chips brought from home.

Dinner: Corn chex with blueberries and milk

Snacks: cola cake with light vanilla ice cream, popcorn

I will be glad when I finish the popcorn because it is so good that I need it out of my house!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Cake

My friend reminded me last week that I would never be able to have the Coca-cola Cake that the Cracker Barrel makes. While that's true, I have a recipe from the side of an old Betty Crocker's Devils Food cake mix that I've made occasionally.

I bought a gluten free cake mix this week so I tried the recipe today. It turned out pretty well. Definitely not the same as a regular one, but if you picked this dessert off a buffet with no preconceived idea of how it would taste, you would not be disappointed.

To make it, I followed the directions on the package except I substituted 1 cup Pepsi for the 1 cup of water.  While the cake baked, I made the icing.  In a small sauce pan, bring 1/2 c. Butter, 1/3 cup cola, and 1/4 cup cocoa to a slight boil.  Pour over 2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar, stirring until smoothe. Add 1/4 tsp. almond extract if desired. You can also add 1/2 cup of chopped nuts.  Let cool to lukewarm, about 20 minutes.  When the cake is done, pour the icing over the cake and let cool for about an hour before serving.

The lumps in picture are powdered sugar that didn't get smoothed out.  No nuts on ours because one of the boys don't like nuts and I wanted him to try the cake.  We also think it would be better with vanilla ice cream!

Breakfast: Van's gluten free waffles, orange juice

Dinner: rice, carrots

Snacks: cake! And popcorn.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Lunch Outback

With no specific plans for lunch, I packed a can of Progresso chicken and rice soup, some yogurt with frozen blueberries, and a few other snacks so I would have safe food on hand for the day. So when my lunch buddies wanted to go out, I told them to pick the place because in knew if there wasn't safe food for me there, I could always crack open the soup when we got back.

Because I am still so early in, they decided to go somewhere I could eat, so off we went to the Outback which happens to be where I went for my 50th birthday lunch. They have a soup and salad for $6.99 but none of the soups are gluten free, and a salad / small entree combination for $7.99. We all got salad and cheeseburgers. Mine came with no croutons and no bun, and when they hesitated to get the bread for the table, I ordered it for them. If I were dieting, that would have been hard to watch the others eating the bread, but today it didn't bother me.

So I had a delicious lunch and now have an emergency can of soup on the shelf at work.

Breakfast: egg white omelet and OJ

Lunch: salad and cheeseburger, no bun

Dinner: yogurt and blueberries, rice crackers

Snacks: Udi's cookies and popcorn

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Self advocating

I had a dream last night that reminded me that last week when we went to Moe's, the salad I had was at risk for cross contamination. You see, the person who puts the lettuce in the bowl is also the person handling the tortillas and salad shells, and they grab a handful of lettuce to make a bed for the rest of the salad. Last Thursday was my first day of eating gluten free and I thought I was being so careful by reading the menu online and knowing not to get the chips because of other things cooked in the same oil.

So when we decided to go back today, I knew I would need to say something to have the person change their gloves before handling my lettuce. I rehearsed a few different ways to say it.

"I need to eat gluten free. Could you please use new gloves for my salad?"

"I can't have gluten, so can you please change your gloves?"

I don't want to be the educator, and I don't want to hold up the line, but I do want to advocate for myself and not unnecessarily expose myself to gluten. After all, I am trying to get my insides healed and working properly. I mentioned to my lunch companions that I needed to address this, so please bear with me.

"Welcome to Moe's!"

There was only one person ahead of us in line and no one immediately behind us. Relieved that I would have a little time, I placed my order for the Close Talker, no shell, and then said, "I have Celiac's." Before I could even speak another word, the wonderful young man said, "ah! Let me change my gloves!" I was thrilled that he knew exactly how to handle, literally, my order. He took my order all the way down the line since he had the clean gloves on, and he mentioned to me that while the chips don't have gluten in them themselves, they are cooked in the same oil that other things are. I appreciated his knowledge of the limitations of Celiac's and his accommodation of my needs.

I only wish more places were as informed, but I know there are many initiatives that are educating food services on how to keep their customers who suddenly find themselves with a need to adjust their diet so drastically.

Breakfast: Chex corn cereal with blueberries and milk. OJ.

Lunch: salad at Moe's and gf tortilla chips brought from home.

Snacks: granola, cherries, almonds

Dinner: to be decided

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Gluten free oatmeal

I was surprised when I first started reading about what foods are gluten-free to find that oatmeal is not considered gluten-free. Well, technically oatmeal is gluten-free but is often processed around wheat and other grains that have gluten in them. Because of the high risk of cross-contamination, most oatmeal is not considered gluten-free.

I have a giant sized box of Quaker quick cooking oats. While I don't make oatmeal very often during the summer, oatmeal is a staple for breakfast during the cooler months. Thankfully I was able to find eggs gluten free quick cooking oatmeal. Bob's Red Mill brand has gluten-free oats. They also have non-gluten-free oats, so if you are shopping for gluten-free oats specifically, be sure to read the labels.



Breakfast: gluten-free oatmeal. It took a few seconds longer to cook in the microwave than the Quaker oatmeal does. The consistency is good and the oatmeal tastes just fine. I had milk and orange juice as well.

Lunch: we dined with the old people at Ruby Tuesday's today. I had the same lunch as last week; sliced sirloin, steamed broccoli, mashed potatoes. All listed as gluten-free on their menu.

Dinner: reheated gluten-free pizza from Uncle Maddio's from yesterday.

Snacks: almonds, grapes, a few gluten-free white cheddar rice crackers. I am not crazy about these crackers, so only a few at a time will do. I will not buy this flavor again.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Uncle Maddio's (gluten free) Pizza Joint

Tuesday is pizza night around our house which means DH brings home Domino's pizza for the boys. I rarely have any because they have eaten most of it before I even get home from work. As it turns out, this has been a positive thing because it's that much less gluten I was eating before I knew what it was doing to my body.

But it is still Tuesday, and while I know eating GF means changes, I am determined to not let it dictate everything. Uncle Maddio's Pizza Joint is a perfect solution! We haven't been in a while, but they offer GF pizza crusts and their pizza prep avoids cross contamination. Don't believe it? You get to watch them assemble your pizza using separate ingredients including sauce and toppings than those on the main bar. Just be sure to tell them you need the GF pizza and watch them go to work.

The pizza costs $2 more for GF but is quite tasty and an individual size is really too much. The crust is crisp and doesn't taste like cardboard. In fact, it was delicious. But once the pizza cools off, it's not quite as good, but a quick heat at home will fix things if you have leftovers.

Breakfast: egg whites with cheese, orange juice

Lunch: because we were going out for dinner, I brought food to graze throughout the day. Cherries, almonds, frozen blueberries with vanilla yogurt, and granola.

Dinner: pizza

Snacks: S'mores dip, gf graham cracker, popcorn