Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Great Gluten-Free Meals!

This past Sunday we ventured out to Udi's Cafe in Old Town Arvada to check it out. I was interested because they offer gluten-free bread and pizza. My husband was interested because they have a Cuban sandwich - one of his favorites.

I am happy to report it was a great experience! I ordered the grilled cheese with caramelized onion and avocado instead of bacon, on gluten-free bread. the sandwich was huge and yummy. As another nice surprise was the option to get a spring green salad with the sandwich instead of chips (you have several side dish choices) and the orange balsamic dressing was the best. Oh yeah, my husband also really enjoyed his Cuban sandwich.

On the way out of the cafe, I stopped and bought fresh pizza crusts. I hadn't tried Udi's crusts yet even though King Soopers sells them frozen. That night we had pizza for dinner. I am not kidding when I say it was the best gluten-free pizza that I have ever had. And I may be correct when I say it was the best homemade pizza of any kind that I have ever made. It was delish! What a treat. I am so happy the world of gluten-free is opening up for me.

Next, I will be making gluten-free lemon cupcakes for Easter. Betty Crocker sent me a recipe to use with their new yellow cake mixes. Don't lemon cupcakes sound yummy!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Slippery Slope of Gluten-Free

I feel like I am on that slippery slope of falling back into gluten-filled days. I am fortunate in that I am only gluten-intolerant so occasional gluten/wheat doesn't bother me. But that also means that sometimes when I get a taste of it, I want more.

For me, it started last weekend at a wedding rehearsal dinner. The Italian dinner was lovingly made by an Italian. And I couldn't resist. Initially I tried. I made my husband drive me around this small town in Northern Wisconsin we were visiting to find me something to eat for my dinner. I was then going to just have salad at the actual dinner. The only thing we could find that was gluten-free and vegetarian and fast was a fried potato and cheese concoction from Taco John's. I said that I would eat the pasta. And boy did I! It was so good -- garlic bread and all.

I actually did quite well the rest of the weekend, finding a grilled shrimp entree for lunch one day and a grilled vegetable sandwich (but I didn't eat the bun) on another. At the wedding, I ate mashed potatoes and canned corn -- my only options. I even skipped the wedding cake as my hubby told me it really wasn't worth it.

But now that I am home, I want to eat gluten. I am so sick of gluten-free breads. I can't stand that funky taste they all seem to have. And the little things, like Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup. I want it. I have several recipes that use it but because it has wheat, I shouldn't have it. I crave crackers. I found some from Out of the Bread Box that are okay -- but they aren't that same crispy, flaky cracker I so enjoy.

I made a boxed rice mix that had wheat in it the other day. And last night I ate homemade pizza that had wheat in the crust. I didn't realize until the pizzas were already made and in the oven that they were made with corn AND wheat. This discovery was made when I was looking at the cooking instructions. I made a dumb mistake and didn't read the label at Vitamin Cottage. The frozen crusts were in the gluten-free area so I just assumed they were gluten-free because the label said they were corn meal crusts.

Luckily for me, my husband is stopping at Le Central today to get me my favorite gluten-free bread. Maybe that will make it easier to get back on track this weekend! That and some Mexican food. Wish me luck.