Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Baked goods

My mom loooooves to bake. (that's an understatement). During previous visits to my parents house I've gotten sick from the wheat flour in the air when my mom bakes with gluten. So this holiday season, she's only baking gluten free. Yay!

Lucky for my two more family members have recently switched to a gluten free diet (and seen significant improvements in their health). that means I'm no longer expected to eat all the baked goods that my mom makes, like the pictured cinnamon rolls.

I think the easiest thing to do if you're new to being gluten free and you want to make holiday sweets is to stick to recipes that don't have flour. Using naturally gluten free recipes is much easier than trying to convert a review to be gluten free. (I'm not speaking from personal experience but I did hear my sister day she made three recipes of gluten free cookies last weekend and they all tasted like sawdust.)

My favorite naturally gluten free sweets? I've definitely had more than my fair share of meringues lately (oops no picture because they all got eaten). Make sure any flavoring you add is gluten free. My mom also makes these date-coconut-walnut balls.

Sorry about the formatting. I'm posting this via email because my android's swyping technology makes it pretty easy to type one handed.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Apple cranberry walnut rum cake

Surprise! A new post. My mom makes a delicious cake the other day, apple cranberry walnut rum cake. She used the Betty Crocker gluten free yellow cake mix and doctored it up. It was perfect with some whipped cream.

In other news, during my bicycle commute one day in July, while stopped at a red light, I got hit by a truck. So blogging hasn't really been high on my priorities. Anyone still reading this other than the baker of this cake? I'm not exactly doing much better yet but I thought maybe I'd do some short posts here and there.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

New Cascadia Traditional (gluten free) Bakery!

My sole reader (hi mom!) is harassing me for a new post, so here you go.

While in Portland back in May with my family, I went to the New Cascadia Traditional Bakery twice. Everything is gluten free and lots of things are vegan. My mom (pictured left) is a cinnamon roll connoisseur, so it's what she gets just about everywhere, although I am pretty sure she likes her own homemade cinnamon rolls the best. I can't remember, but I imagine she gave me a bite of this cinnamon roll, and I imagine I liked it and she thought it was "meh."

Meanwhile...... I ate a toasted cinnamon raisin bagel with cream cheese. I thought it was pretty groovy.
I picked up a morning muffin to go, which seemed like a blueberry muffin with a delicious crumble topping to me. I ate it in the afternoon.
My dad ate a scone. His review was: "it's dry and bland with no flavor." He went back with me to the bakery the next day and ordered it again. He liked it the second time around. Or pretended better.

We got a strawberry rhubarb galette and lemon cupcake to go:

The galette was absolutely incredible. It was hard to resist getting another one when I returned the next day.

Lemon cupcake close-up:

Lemon cupcake has lemon filling too! Delicious and very rich. I kind of wish I'd saved a few bites for the next day.

Overall, I would definitely go back to the New Cascadia Traditional Bakery every single time I'm in Portland. I had a piece of their teff bread with a lunch at a different place (I'll post about it later, I promise) and it was delicious too. Two thumbs up. Five stars.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Deschute's Brewery in Portland

Eating gluten free can be tough while traveling! Eating in Portland though isn't too hard. Lots of the breweries have gluten free beer. I had a really yummy grilled veggie sandwich off the gluten free menu at Deschute's Brewery. They even fry their delicious sweet potato fries in gluten free oil. (I was impressed with the server's knowledge if cross contamination issues and what the restaurant does to avoid problems.) If you are vegetarian the menu is limited, but otherwise there were plenty of things to eat. Just one gf beer, a northwest pale ale, which was described as a mix between pale ale and IPA. I liked it.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

My Coworkers are Awesome

A recent post on another blog pointed out some examples of anti-gluten free sentiment with which celiacs are presented. Some people think our gluten free diets aren't serious. It's really frustrating for those of us who know we'll get sick if we have even the tiniest bit of gluten. When I first had to go gluten free, I was a little shy about it; I didn't tell many people and would just avoid eating in social situations. But then I decided to raise money for the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness in connection with my Ironman Florida race, so I kind of had to start talking about having celiac disease and eating gluten free. My coworkers have been insanely supportive, a lot of them made donations to the NFCA and helped me with my Ironman training by switching days on call. Here are just a few more examples of why I am so thankful to work with these amazing people.

Every month at work, we have a gathering to celebrate birthdays with food. One or two people sign up to bring treats for the month. Every single month this year, the person in charge has brought a gluten free option and I'm the only one out of about 20 people who has to eat gluten free! I generally try to sign up for my own birthday month so that I will have something to eat, but both last year and this year I wasn't able to choose March. Last March my floor supervisor made a very yummy (mostly) flourless chocolate tart (I gave him a few tablespoons of Bob's Red Mill's gluten free flour mix to use). This January my new floor supervisor made a delicious gluten-free dessert bread (I can't remember the flavor now but it was very yummy! and she gave me the leftover gf flour mix, although I still haven't ventured into baking). In February, I brought a gluten free chocolate cake that I bought at Gluten Free Specialty. My coworkers brought my favorite cinnamon rolls for my birthday in March. Today for birthdays there was a Trader Joe's flourless chocolate cake, and the guy in charge of birthdays even popped his head into my office to say "Just so you know, I remembered to cut the gluten free cake first!" (Visit this link for another GF blogger's review of the TJ's cake with pictures.)

Another reason my coworkers rock is that there are really only three restaurants nearby where I can eat, yet people are still willing to go out to eat with me sometimes! One of the restaurants is a brewery and I can only order one item off the menu (a salad, without a lot of the toppings) so that gets kind of old. The other two are a yummy sushi place and PF Changs - both have gluten free menus. A few of us went out today to celebrate the impending arrival of a coworker's baby. Since she's pregnant, the sushi place was not an option. PF Changs it was! It is a bit bizarre having someone else's lunch event planned around where I can eat. It doesn't seem fair to them and I feel incredibly high maintenance, but they are always willing to accommodate me and my gluten free diet! Plus they are always willing to tell me how cute Sierra is. (Don't worry, I don't actually let her drink my wine.)

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Vacation is good!

Vacation is so much healthier than two months straight of sitting on my butt at a desk! I'm on day four of a week vacation and so far I have gotten more exercise than probably the entire last two months put together. That may be a slight exaggeration, but only slight. My hip got worse and worse as the long hours at work got longer, but it is feeling good now. The dog and I have been taking longer and longer walks. While she does like to stop and smell the roses, or in today's case, the daisies, she is happy to maintain a good pace while we're actually moving.

Now try not to laugh at me, but we did 2.87 miles today and I'm happy about that! I definitely could've walked more, and I was very tempted to, but since we just started at about 2.3 miles a few days ago, I think I need to increase my mileage slowly. I'd rather be itching to go farther than wishing I hadn't. We are aiming for 3.0 painfree miles in the next few days  - I think it's going to happen! Lots of stretching happening too. I actually got sore from yoga the other day! 

Yesterday's walk was shorter, probably only a little more than a mile, but I rode a combined 8.4 miles on my bike during the day. My car is not quite as drivable as I would like - or more accurately, it's not quite as parkable as I would like - there is no more reverse! So I've been biking more. (I must admit I find a little bit of irony in riding my bike to my asthma doc's office.) My local gluten free shop definitely gets more of my business because they don't mind if I bring my bike in the shop. It's a lot more convenient to just stop in for a few things if I don't have to worry about locking up my bike. Although I have an ultimate goal of achieving complete relaxation during this vacation, I do need to find myself a new car. (I seriously considered just going car free, but I don't feel safe enough biking anywhere on dark rainy days.) I'm trying to find a triathlete-friendly, dog-friendly, environmentally-friendly car. It is a lot of work for someone on vacation.  

Thursday, February 17, 2011

cinnamon cookie

Sun Flour Baking Company makes a very yummy cinnamon cookie. Reminds me vaguely of my favorite snickerdoodle from my pre-gluten free days. It was from a chinese-mexican restaurant. I miss those cookies. Anyways, Sun Flour does a great job with all of their cookies. Things I like about this cookie: it is vegan and gluten free and yummy and the label says "complete protein, good fiber, and calcium." Things I don't like: the label says it is 440 calories per 3 oz cookie. I broke it in half and put half in the freezer. I ate the other half. Then I waited a moment and went to the freezer.... Definitely not something you want to eat every day. Unless you are training for an ironman and have a tapeworm or something. But it is a good treat every so often.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

A frozen pizza kind of day

Amy's Kitchen cheeze pizza, cooked spinach on the side, and a Wyder's hard pear cider.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

My new BFF: frozen veggies

I am not quite sure I would be eating veggies these days if it weren't for frozen bags of them. I am so busy at work that I feel lucky if I find time to cut a carrot into slices for a snack (I did today and it was so yummy). Today's lunch: black beans and rice (I cooked a bunch of both over the weekend) and half a bag of frozen veggies with a splash of hot sauce. Fairly inexpensive, easy, vegan, gluten free.

I am hoping to get to the farmer's market later this month, but for now I am thankful for the abundance of frozen veggies in my freezer.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Another quickie: polenta, veggies, and beans

Today's lunch: polenta, frozen veggies, black beans, and hot sauce. I've been eating something like this a few times a week all year. It is super super easy. Take 1/2 cup of corn grits (polenta), add 2 cups of water, microwave it for 6 minutes in a large bowl. Add veggies (in the interest of time, I've been using about half a bag of frozen veggies. Today's is the California blend, but I'm fond of the fiesta blend, too). Then add your choice of beans. Either cook it until it's hot, or put it in the fridge for later and then heat when you're ready to eat. Today is the first day I used plain black beans plus some hot sauce for a change, but I have typically been using a can of Amy's Kitchen's chili in this simple meal. This makes about 2-3 servings.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Food! It's what's for dinner.

Since being sidelined for my hip Injury, I've been paying more attention than usual to what I eat. Over the last few years my diet had changed a lot. I went from being mostly omnivorous to now being gluten free, mostly vegan, and on a good day, sugar free.  Maybe I'll write about the evolution some time. For now, here are some pictures of typical meals I've been eating lately! Beans, rice, and frozen veggies (a staple right now as work keeps me very busy), and a potato with earth balance (soy free) and spinach. Oh, and I think I might start blogging more about food and less about triathlons. At least until my hip gets better. So if food bores you, now might be the time to give up on this blog.

Friday, January 28, 2011


I love breakfast! I like to mix hearty Bob's Red Mill Mighty Tasty Hot cereal with creamy smooth Poconos Cream of Buckwheat cereal. I cook it with a banana and add Blue Diamond unsweetened vanilla almond milk plus a dash of cinnamon. Smells like banana bread! Yum. During ironman training I would add protein powder too.

Although I had to switch to these brand when I went gluten free, my breakfast is still just hot cereal with a banana! What's your favorite breakfast?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Seaweed snack!

My new favorite snack, wasabi seaweed! Gluten free of course.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Getting Organized!

I'm sorry I've been such a blogging slacker lately! Most of the gluten free stuff is just habit to me so often doesn't seem worth writing about, and due to my hip injury I haven't been doing much training, so I haven't felt like I've had anything to say! But I know my mom likes to read my blog so I figure I should update it every so often. (If anyone else is still reading, I would like to refer you to RBR's blog, because even though she hasn't been writing much lately either, she is much more entertaining than I am.)

A month or two ago I emailed my fellow members of the local triathlon club and asked for advice on how to organize my triathlon gear. I have it everywhere! People have a lot of different ways of organizing! I found something that works for me, although it is really just step one of a bigger project. I bought a build-it-yourself cubby storage unit. Right now this unit holds ALL of my triathlon clothes, plus a little bit of equipment. The fabric drawer inserts are sold separately (I like the Martha Stewart Fabric Drawers because they have a place for a label) and they hold a lot of stuff. Just one of those fabric drawers holds 5 bike shorts and 5 short-sleeve bike jerseys! All my workout clothes are made with wrinkle-free fabric, so I just toss them in there. I have a drawer for cold weather gear that has my gloves, ear warmers, rain pants, etc. Another drawer has all my running tops - I figure as the weather warms up the long sleeve tops will make their way to the bottom of the pile. A couple of swim suits, goggles, and caps fit in another drawer with my tri tops and tri bottoms. (I would not put my wetsuit into one of these, but I bet it would fit.) I even have a drawer just for socks. Usually my helmet rests on my aero bars, but it could easily fit in a cubby with a pair of bike gloves and sunglasses. Even though I'm not in training right now, I think I really love this setup. It is easy to grab my clothes depending on what sport(s) I'm doing, and it frees up my dresser for my regular clothes! Next I plan to use a separate cubby unit to organize my bike tools and all that other equipment that is piled up in a big rubbermaid container in a disorganized mess.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Cleared to run, but...

I can't remember the last time I updated. Oops. I got cleared to run, but only after I can consistently walk 3 miles without pain. I am not having much luck with that. The second shot that I got in my hip seemed to really help for a few weeks, and I even took the dog on a few brisk 3 mile walks one week - pain free! Then I went for a 3.3 mile walk to look at holiday lights one night and it hasn't quite been happy since. So I am starting with shorter distances and stretching a lot. (I love the Crunch Candlelight Yoga dvd!) This morning sierra and I did 1.5 miles. Wow walking is so boring when we both want to run!