I Survived My First Week Gluten-Free!

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So…I made it! This was my first full week of going gluten-free! I have to say, I definitely feel a difference. I’m not sure whether it’s a placebo effect or what, but I definitely feel better. I’m not having as many issues with my stomach, and the typical “brain fog” I’ve been experiencing lately also seems to have disappeared. I know it takes a while for everything to settle down, but if this week is any indication, this was definitely the right way to go.

I’ve found plenty of things I can eat – and have been really surprised by the number of things I can’t! My in-laws (the other ones) were here for the weekend and my mother-in-law (hubby’s mom) LOVES Special K. She brought a box with her for breakfast since I didn’t have any last time, and I took a look at the ingredients. Wheat gluten – right there in the ingredients! There goes another cereal… I had to explain to her why I couldn’t have it – and that touched off the “What is gluten?” and the “What else can’t you have?” conversation. I find it really hard to explain – since I’m not so sure yet myself. I gave her the big picture – no wheat, rye, or barley, and I have to read the labels of everything pretty carefully. She was so funny – I listed so many things I can’t have that she loves – she said she didn’t think she could do it. I told her I am just learning how to do without, and how to make substitutions.

In fact, that brings me to what I wanted to share with you. Whenever we have company on a Sunday morning, I like to have some kind of a nice breakfast or brunch. Today I made a crustless quiche type of thing (eggs with scallions, tomatoes, cheese, and turkey bacon), and I tried making gluten-free muffins for the first time. I was really nervous that they would turn out like hockey pucks and I would have nothing to serve with the eggs – all of my other GF stuff is frozen! Little did I know that my muffins would be morsels of yumminess, and that they would get rave reviews from everyone! To quote my dear MIL, “If you didn’t tell me, I would never have known these were gluten-free!” SCORE!!

Here’s how I made them…

Gluten-Free Mixed Berry Muffins

1 1/2 cups King Arthur Flour Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour

3/4 cup organic cane sugar

1/2 tsp. salt

2 tsp. baking powder

1/3 cup canola oil (maybe melted coconut oil…will definitely try that next time)

1 egg

1 tsp. vanilla

1/3 cup milk (I’m sure you could use almond milk)

1 cup frozen mixed berries (I used the Welch’s Frozen Berry mix but took out the strawberries – leaving blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries)

 

Preheat the oven to 400F. Either spray 12 cup muffin tin with nonstick spray or line with paper liners. Whisk together dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add wet ingredients, mixing well. Fold in berries (I used them just frozen). Fill muffin tins about 2/3 of the way. Bake for 20-25 minutes (will depend on your oven) until they are golden brown on the top.

Here is what they looked like:

YUM!!

YUM!!

So glad that my first attempt at making gluten-free muffins was a success! I’m sure I will mess up at other points along the way – there will certainly be a lot of experimentation. At least I know I have one recipe I can fall back on now!

Hope you all had a great weekend – and had a chance to relax and recharge! Time to start another week already…

What’s your favorite Sunday brunch food??

 

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My First GF What I Ate Wednesday!

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Welcome to my first gluten-free WIAW! Thanks to Jenn over at Peas and Crayons for hosting – as always!

I’ve made it most of the way through my first week of eating gluten-free. It has been challenging, but not impossible. I’ve definitely been able to find plenty of things that I can eat – and even found a few things that I like better than their regular counterparts! I’m sure as I continue on this new part of my journey, I’ll find plenty of hits and lots of misses!

I forgot to take pictures of everything I had today, but I can definitely tell you what I had – and post some pictures with links where you can find out more about what I ate today!

Breakfast was an Udi’s multigrain bagel. Bagel?? Yes, bagel. I have to admit, these are not like what I’m used to at all – I grew up in New York, so bagels are typically chewy and dense. These bagels are kind of fluffy, and a little crumbly. Definitely best toasted. Worked great for an egg sandwich yesterday. Today I had one with some veggie cream cheese from my favorite bagel shop. My counter guy looked at me a little funny when I just ordered coffee and cream cheese…but once I told him why, he totally understood. Here’s what the package looks like – and I have to say, they’re not bad. Not real New York bagels, but they will do in a pinch.

Learn more about Udi’s products by clicking on this picture of their yummy bagels!

I had a hard boiled egg with a little sea salt and pepper for a snack mid-morning. For lunch, I’ve been taking a break from my usual salads. When it gets cold out, I like to have something hot for lunch. I’ve found some really great frozen entrees from Amy’s. One of my favorites – and what I had for lunch today – is their Light & Lean Roasted Polenta with Swiss Chard. It’s really delicious, gluten-free, and has only 140 calories!

Click on this picture to learn more about Amy’s Kitchen and their awesome products!

I had a couple of small clementines along with my polenta, and it was quite a satisfying lunch! Mid-afternoon, I got the munchies and had a couple of sharp cheddar cracker cuts (square slices of cheese!) with Crunchmaster Multi-Seed crackers. They’re super crunchy, and definitely stand up to cheese! They are rice based with sesame, quinoa, flax, and amaranth. They have a hint of tamari flavor. Yummy!

Click here for more information about Crunchmaster products!

 

I was craving pizza for dinner, which is a definite GF no-no…unless you happen to have one of these babies on hand!

Click here for more info about Against the Grain Gourmet!

So…I decided to get together some of my favorite pizza toppings…

Click here for more info about that delicious Applegate Farms sausage!!

Loaded and ready to go into the oven…

Out of the oven and ready to eat!!

 

YUM! It was delicious! The crust was crispy, and the toppings were cooked just enough. It took about 15 minutes in my oven – starting from frozen and cooking the pizza directly on the oven rack. I’ll definitely be trying this again with different toppings!

Finally, time for dessert. Brownies. Think good gluten-free brownies can’t possibly exist? Think again! Try this awesome mix!

Click here for info about King Arthur Flour’s gluten-free products!

I added some Ghirardelli dark chocolate chips to the batter and topped it with some chopped pecans before baking. I think these brownies are better than most of the regular commercial mixes out there. They came out fudgy, chewy, and super chocolatey. In fact, I don’t think I’ll be making them again anytime soon…not because I don’t like them, but because I like them too much!!

Well – that’s my first official gluten-free WIAW! Hope this is helpful to any of you who are starting out with GF like I am!

Do you have any favorite GF products?