Monday, March 30, 2009

Garlic City

Have you ever tried Aleia's brand? They sell it at Whole Foods now.... I had been to their restaurant in CT once, but then they closed down to only manufacture and sell their GF goods, which was a bummer - because the restaurant was great.

Anyway - I'm not a huge fan of their product. I've tried two kinds of cookies and two kinds of bread, not great -- but I like their regular breadcrumbs. I saw this Italian version and decided to try  it out -- I made meatballs with it, and they were OK except that there must be about 20 cloves of garlic in here. It was kinda gross. And I really like garlic, but not that much. Matt ate some and was up at night with heartburn & other issues -- he really can't have much garlic, it angers his insides.

Moral of story: if you love garlic, buy this product.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

DeBoles Multigrain Gluten Free Spaghetti

Found a new kind of gluten free pasta in Whole Foods the other day.... DeBoles Multigrain gluten free pasta!

I was pumped - this pasta had 5g of protein and 3g of fiber (something that a lot of gf food is lacking in), and was hoping this might be a good pasta to keep on hand - although, it was going to be tough to live up to my current favorite, Tinkyada.

So - I took it out of the box and went to boil it -- I noticed it breaking very easily, and when I went back to look into the boiling water, it had all broken apart! Not cool! It looked like this:

Grr -- I was really mad. The entire thing of pasta broke into little bits like this. So -- I guess if you like your pasta like this - this is the pasta for you -- but if you're looking for long spaghetti - stick to Tinkyada.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Traditional Irish Boiled Dinner... Naturally gluten free

We had a small gathering for St. Patty's day at our apartment and did the traditional Corned Beef & Cabbage dinner. This is starting to become a tradition, and I'm fine with it...I LOVE corned beef! 

I was hoping to have leftovers to make hash, but we ate it all, even though I bought almost 6lbs of corned beef. 

If you didn't know already - corned beef is one of the easiest things to cook ever. I usually buy a FLAT cut - not pointed... and here's how I cooked it:

3.5 lb corned beef - not pre-marinated/brined

Fill pot with water and add:

5 peppercorns
2 dashes of allspice
1 onion
6 or more gloves of garlic (whole, not smashed)
5 cloves

I think that's it.... Boil for 3.5-4 hours, and you're done!

You're supposed to boil everything together but 1. I don't have a pot large enough (I needed 4 large pots to cook that dinner) and 2. we had a vegetarian with us that night, so I didn't want the potatoes/carrots/cabbage to be infused with beef fat -- although, it probably would have tasted even better!

I also served on the side three different kinds of mustard -- Country Dijon, regular Grey Poupon, and a mixture of Grey Poupon and 0% Fage yogurt - which is my favorite.

Hope you had a fun St. Patty's!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Friday, March 13, 2009

Celia Cakes

YUM -- How good do those look???

Matt and I went to CeliaCakes and met with Vita to do a tasting for our wedding cake/cupcakes. Prior to our meeting we chose 4 different flavors of cupcakes to try and we went with the following:

In case you can't read that, its:
1. Vanilla cake, strawberry filling, vanilla buttercream icing
2. Vanilla cake, raspberry filling, lemon buttercream icing
3. Chocolate cake, mocha buttercream icing
4. Chocolate cake, almond buttercream icing

Numbers 1 and 3 were the winners -- YUUUUM. We're hopefully going to be having those two flavors at our wedding as a mini cake, cupcakes, and mini-mini cakes. I have an elaborate idea in my head of a dessert table with cakes & treats all spread out - not just one neat & orderly cake.... If you've been on Martha Stewart  Weddings lately,  you'll notice this is the trend right now, and I like it. I also plan on filling apothecary jars with my favorite sweet of all time -- Vanilla Meringues from Trader Joes. It will be a sugary delight.

My macro lens was behaving strangely this day - so all the close-ups I tried to do weren't working out -- but here is one one three of the cupcakes halved. The vanilla with strawberry filling was so good & moist. I didn't love the raspberry filling, which is weird because I usually go for that over strawberry. 

As for frosting --  We both decided the favorites were the vanilla and the mocha, especially the mocha! I liked the lemon frosting, Matt didn't, and neither of us liked the almond - I wanted to try it anyway -- it's such a distinct flavor. I always think I'm going to like it, and I never do. 

I was sure to test just the cake alone without frosting to make sure the cake didn't have that weird gluten free taste - and it didn't - not at all. It was fluffy, light and quite tasty. We liked both the vanilla & chocolate which is why we're going ot have both!

I'm pretty picky about frosting - I HATE frosting on cakes you buy in supermarkets - YUCK - I would only eat the cake -- PRE-CELIAC OF COURSE.  But I did always like the real frosting you would make at home with a pound of confectionary sugar & some milk/water. This frosting tastes more real - a hint of grit which is fine with me - not super super smooth. I thought it was divine.

I ate all of my halves -- Matt was nice enough to only eat 1/4 of his half so that we could take home leftovers to my sister, but he was very happy. We weren't going to do a cake at all (we're not doing a cake cutting ceremony or anything like that) but wanted to check out CeliaCakes and were pleasantly surprised! Definitely highly recommended if you're looking for a cake or cupcakes. 

Monday, March 09, 2009

Friedman's Deli - NYC

I was in NYC last week visiting, and every time I go there I make it a point to stop by at least one gluten free establishment I've read about -- usually on Celiac Chicks or A Gluten Free Guide.

So this time - I HAD to go to Friedman's Deli in Chelsea Market. (I apologize in advance for the crap photos -- I was so mad I forgot my camera, and my friend's camera wasn't working) Anyway.... I knew I was going to get a Reuben Sandwich because I saw someone else get it, and that was my FAVE sandwich pre-diagnosis.  I also started with a potato pancake AND got a side of the rosemary fries. Can we say, CARB OVERLOAD???  

It was SO worth it.

The potato pancake was delish -- served with applesauce and sour cream - it was thick and filling. It was like a mashed potato pancake - not the kind that is more like shredded potatoes -- I like both, so it was excellent to me. It was also very filling! But I brought my appetite so I was ready for more....

Next, the fries came out with my friends salad. OK - these fries were GREAT -- I love these kind of big thick fries, and they were mixed in with rosemary & sea salt - but it wasn't too much, it was just right... 

You also might see in that picture two shot glasses that have some chunky stuff -- they gave everyone samples of the fresh homemade juice of the day -- it was a grapefruit/pineapple concoction of some sort, and it was very good, but it was more like eating a piece of fruit than drinking juice.

NEXT.... The Reuben.

YUUUMMM. It was SO GOOD. Sadly, I took one picture, but it's so awful, I won't post it - it makes the sandwich look terrible. It was on Grainless Baker Mock Rye Bread, and was loaded with meat, russian dressing, and sauerkraut. It also seemed that the bread had been generously spread with butter before being toasted/fried, and was absolutely delicious. I ate the entire thing in about 30 seconds, it was probably a disgusting spectacle.

Also -- the servers were great --- I asked my waitress about the bread since it was so good, she told me it was Grainless Baker, and she sold me a loaf! I don't think I've ever seen it in any of my local grocers - and I wanted to make sure I had more.

SO - at the end of the day, I HIGHLY recommend Friedman's Deli -- and Chelsea Market is pretty cool to walk around in, so definitely visit next time you're in NYC.

Friday, March 06, 2009

Work Travel

travelfood, originally uploaded by AInserra.

As of late I've had to do a bit of travel for work. I don't mind it - but I get slight anxiety about being able to find food to eat. Does this happen to you?

I was rushing around before work yesterday getting clothes together, and I grabbed a package of GF Shar crackers, a half finished bag of rice cakes, and a bag of almonds & raisins... we are seriously low on food in the house - so this was all I had in the way of snacks.

On the Amtrak down last night, I got a bag of chips -- then when I got to the hotel I ordered room service - luckily, there was an omelette on the menu, so I went for that. This morning I figured there wouldn't be anything at the continental breakfast for me.... so I ate the aforementioned rice cakes, and had some crappy hotel coffee.

Lunch is the next big obstacle, but luckily, I am sitting in the cafeteria waiting so decided to stock up on snacks just in case. I REALLY want to eat the oatmeal (i used to looove mushy oatmeal sitting in those warmers, mushy oatmeal is the best to me) but I ended up with some fruit, cottage cheese, chips, tea & water. BORING. But oh well.

I pocketed most of those chips for later, and I still have my crackers... so we'll see what lunch brings - guaranteed they will offer us sandwiches & salads loaded with croutons.

After that - dinner at the airport, which should be easier. Thank god for chips!!

Monday, March 02, 2009

Breakfast..... again.

I feel like I often blog about breakfast... I'm not sure why. I always cook dinner, every night, but do I write about it? Rarely. I am definitely a morning person. I get up extra early to make a nice breakfast, drink my tea, watch the Today Show, and do some household chores. I usually don't get into work until 9:30 or 10, unless I have an early meeting.

At the end of the day I just want to relax. So I tend to have little to no motivation to take pictures of my food. During the day I also mentally plan all of these different productive activities for my evening - gym, wii, tv shows, dinner, dvd guitar lessons, wedding planning, crocheting, reading.... And when it comes down to it - It is usually just a workout (hopefully at the gym, or using the Wii Fit, or doing situps on my living room floor), making dinner, a TV show or three, and reading in bed. I really need to swap a TV show for guitar lessons/playing!

Anyway.... this weekend was an especially good breakfast, because it was made, with love, by 
my lovely friend whom I was visiting in NY. She told me she got some GF Rice tortillas from Trader Joes... and I brought an avocado with me (for fear of it going bad before I got back home) so she made me an egg white, avocado, black bean rollup.

Can I just say - this is really the most delicious combo! I can't believe I've never put these things together. Halfway through it I decided I should take a phone pic so I could document this goodness, and her cute plate:

Egg White/Avocado/Black Bean Rollup

3 egg whites
1/4 cup canned organic black beans (rinsed first)
roasted red peppers
1/2 fresh avocado
bit of salt & pepper

Spray pan - cook onions until soft, add egg whites, beans, red peppers and cook (either scramble or try to keep together in omlette form to fit in tortilla)... place inside tortilla and place avocado slices on top of eggs, roll up, and serve! It actually held together pretty well but it was dripping onto the plate and rather messy, so I eventually had to eat it with a fork & knife... Here's the inside:

Blackberry pics again -- sorry! I forgot my camera!