Gluten Free Zuchinni Noodles - Using a spiralizer to make gluten free noodles

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So last week I decided to do something different with our meal.  We typically have a carb with our meal.  Usually some sort of rice or potato.  If we are having pasta, we usually struggle to get in a veggie.

So I decided to try something different from a spiralizer cook book we borrowed from the library. We made zuchinni noodles!  I knew it was risky with kids, but I know they love the green pea pasta from Costco.  So I thought to try and trick them with another veggie pasta.  


To be kid friendly, I peeled the skin, so the zucchini looked more like a noodle.  Then I used the noodle insert to create long twisty noodles.  I then heated up some oil with garlic and sauteed the noodles for a minute before adding the sauce to cook it more until el dante. I can tell you hiding the fact this was a vegetable did not work as well as the pea pasta, but the kids still liked it.  They knew it wasn't real pasta, but powered through it.  I made sure to have a tasty sauce with it, and served it with a veal parmesan.




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Does Subway Subs have a gluten free bun? Yes!

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We heard a whisper last week of a Subway Subs in Edmonton serving up a gluten free bun.  Well, when we shared that whisper, it turned into a roar, as people began to report which locations they saw the gluten free buns at.

So, we came to the conclusion that we had to try the gluten free bun at Subway ourselves.



Like every restaurant there is high risk of cross contamination. So we took a few steps, to try and reduce, and they took a few steps to try and reduce the risk of cross contamination.
  • The buns are pre baked offsite, and pre packaged and brought into the store
  • We had them change their gloves and cutting knife.
  • We checked the allergen chart on their website to determine what toppings are gluten free
Tip:
You can always ask if the sandwich maker is able to get veggies from new container that maybe has not been exposed to other ingredients or buns.

So about the bun!  It is $1 extra for a 6" sub, which to me isn't that bad, although we all obviously wish there were no extra surcharges for gluten free right?  We had them microwave the bun instead of toasting the bun.  That got the bun warm and soft.


The bun itself was the perfect thickness and had a nice sweet tone to it. The location we went to at Tera Losa, tried to keep the buns fresh, by dating the bun and putting in the fridge to naturally thaw.  The buns are tossed after a certain date to keep freshness.

We also noticed that have a pre packaged gluten brownie, but Amanda had the gluten free chips. 

When I reached out to Subway Canada on Facebook, they informed me by June 1, 2017 all locations will have the gf bun.  They also let me know of their protocols, see below... so you can help yourself by ensuring they follow!


Subway Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Gluten Sensitive Menu at Smitty's in Edmonton

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Smitty's in Edmonton is going beyond the Smitty's gluten sensitive menu.  In a recent tweet they let it be known that they have added gluten free dessets from Wow Desserts in Sherwood Park!

Ontop of of that they have gluten free soup and gluten free toast.

Our typical go to breakfast diner is Denny's, but we may now just have to check out Smitty's.  Check out Smitty's gluten sensitive menu and let us know what you think.




Smitty's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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2017 Edmonton Gluten Free Festival - Conference and Vendor Fair

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We have the Edmonton Chapter of the Canadian Celiac Association to thank for this event.  On June 10, 2017 the Edmonton Chapter will be hosting a Edmonton Gluten Free Festival which will include a conference and vendor fair.

See the poster below for Conference and Vendor Fair pricing.


Click here to learn more about the speakers and vendors attending the event!


Bonus for registered guests to the conference! To celebrate their 25th Anniversary, Kinnikinnick is offering conference delegates a free tour of their production facility on Friday, June 9th. Spaces limited, so book now to make sure you get a spot!

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What to do when you don't have gluten free breadcrumbs for your dinner?

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It happens sometimes right?  You run out of gluten free bread crumbs, then what?  Or maybe, you just don't want to use the gf breadcrumbs because, well, it is kind of expensive compared to regular breadcrumbs and you just want to find something else to coat your fish.

Well, if you were stuck like us when we made this fish, it is time to get creative.  With what you do have!  Your cupboards or pantry might be full of gf goodies that can be ground up until a crust. 

Initially for this recipe I was going to use the gf Chex cereal.  A whole box of cereal probably cost as much as a small box of gf breadcrumbs, so quite the deal!  But when I went into the cupboard we only had the Chocolate stuff, and I DID NOT want chocolate covered cod.

Next step, snack shelf and BINGO!  I spotted the Quaker Crispy Minis, with smack dab on it labeled gluten free!  And cheesy minis too.  So I grabbed some handfuls of them, and crushed them up to make a breadcrumb.  And these are really inexpensive too.

I dredged the fish in the Johnny's Dill Ranch dressing and then coated in the crushed minis. 

Heated a pan with oil and fried.  This was one TASTY dinner.  We have two kiddo's that just devoured it too.  It was win win all around.  Cheap, tasty and kid friendly!


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Just before bed 3 minute gluten free oats using an Instant Pot.

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We have written in the past about ready to go overnight apple cinnamon gf oats.  Well this week we tried the exact opposite, with what I call just before bed 3 minute oats.

We got a new toy for the kitchen!  We didn't really know what to try first with our new Instant Pot. We heard so many great things about it, especially all the safety features put in place for the pressure cooker function.


We have a young family so didn't want to risk messing up dinner while trying how to figure things out, so we tried simply adapting a 3 minute oatmeal recipe that comes with the Instant Pot by crossing it with our ready to go apple cinnamon gf oats.

Ingredients:
2 cups coconut milk
1 cup water
1 cup uncontaminated gluten free steel cut oats (We use Only Oats found at Bulk Barn)
1 cinnamon stick
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp butter
2-3 apples peeled and cubed
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 raisins (optional)

Only Oats gluten free oats

Directions
Put everything in the instant pot and seal
Use manual setting, set for 3 minutes
After 3 minutes use natural depressurize method by hitting cancel and letting sit for 20 or so minutes before safely opening the lid using the Instant Pot guide.

You can basically mess around with the recipe and put what you want.  What I liked about the Instant Pot method is that it was more moist than the slow cooker recipe we had.  When the recipe was complete, we put a container of it in the fridge and had it for breakfast in the morning.  I didn't need to add any extra water for warming up.

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If you haven't tried Earth's General Store Downtown or original Whyte Ave location, you should!

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Like the title says, if you haven't been to Earth's General Store Downtown or original Whyte location, you should!

A couple great things about Earth's General Store.

ONE

They carry gluten free products!  And lots of great products!

TWO

They support local small Edmonton businesses.  After all they are one themselves!  Check out this recent tweet about bringing in Alisha's breads from La Oliva Gluten Free Bakery.


THREE

The downtown location serves lunches!  And often gluten free lunches.  Check out this recent post about a gluten free lunch they served.  Looks yum eh?


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Chef Lorne Soles @ the Royal Coach Dining Room

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I will try not to ramble on to much here but we FINALLY made it to the Royal Coach Dining Room at the Chateau Louis Hotel for the Saturday night gluten free prime rib buffet.

Yes, if you haven't heard, currently (as of Feb 2017),  Chef Lorne Soles makes his prime rib buffet 100% gluten free.  Everything from gluten free croutons for a ceasar salad to the most amazing gluten free dessert table.  I took some pictures, and even did a Facebook Live video because I was so excited to share with everyone.

The star of the show, the prime rib, cooked to a perfect medium
So, why a special gluten free buffet day?  Chef Lorne Soles saw the demand and tried it out for one Saturday.  It was successful.  Afterall a gluten free dessert table like this is worth the price of admission:
The co-star a full gluten free dessert table, cakes, tarts, puddings
and everything else you would expect.
After he had his first successful gluten free buffet he decided to make the last Saturday of each month his gluten free prime rub buffet.  I was more than happy to help him promote this!  But too busy to try it out.
Lemon grass and ginger pork medallions
The gluten free buffet was so successful in 2016, that at the beginning of 2017, Chef Lorne decided to make every Saturday the gluten free prime rib buffet night!
Honey dijon roasted chicken
Chef Lorne Soles was kind enough to send us an invite because of all the help we have done promoting the Saturday evenings.  We finally were able to take him up on his offer.  We really didn't know what to expect, however we knew we weren't going to be disappointed because we only have heard good thing from others on Facebook.
Veggies, cheese tray, and salads.  not in the picture, soup of the
day and a cesaer salad station.
Our experience was beyond expectations.  We couldn't believe the level of details Chef put into the gluten free buffet and how much of the he made in house that I thought may have been brought in.  When I looked at the dessert bar, I was sure he brought it in from Wow Factor or maybe one of the boutique gf shops, but he told me he made the whole dessert table.  Which was amazing on it own and worth every penny.

Shrimp and lobster risotto
Below (although hard to see), is a plate I put together with the prime rib au ju and in house made horse raddish with some olives, mushroom salad and tasty mash potatoes.  So basically what I'm trying to say, is you need to go Saturday evening to be sure that Chef Lorne Soles doesn't stop making Saturdays gluten free.
My full entree plate put together.
The other best part is that Chef doesn't keep a static menu week after week, the buffet changes every Saturday!  The only thing that stays the same is the prime rib!  So you can return many times over and possibly experience something different.

Royal Coach Dining Room Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Gluten Free Soy and Teriyaki Sauces

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This week on Facebook, there were a couple shared posts about gluten free soy sauces and teriyaki sauces.  We usually stick with VH  sauces.  We love it, and we know all of VH's sauces are gluten free!

But we also know VH is not for everyone.  I think sometimes it can have a strong taste, especially their soya sauce.  But I think I balance their flavours well.

The first post was a Lee Kum Lee soy sauce available.  Deisis was the one who shared this on our Facebook page.


Second, check out the Kikkoman Teriyaki sauce that is available. Lisa posted about the Kikkoman product.  They also do have a gf soya sauce.

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The best home made gluten free potato wedges

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I don't often share original recipes.  Usually, I've adapted a recipe from another blogger, or a cook book like America's Test Kitchen.

But this, proud to say original and is in the best!  And by the best, I mean, the only ones I've ever made :-)  I kind of made these on the fly, and they were easy to make and I would probably recommend a couple changes from how I originally made them.


Wedges in restaurants are typically not gluten free because they are dredged in flour and seasoning salt.

So I thought, why not use another starch, and try this out at home myself.  

Ingredients 
  • Club House gluten free potato starch
  • seasoning salt
  • few potatoes
  • a roasting pan
  • vegetable oil
  • large zip lock bag 

Directions

Amanda cut the potatoes into wedges for me, and then ran them under water to try and get some of the starchy nice out of them, so they don't get too moist.  She learned that from watching the Food Network.

Toss the wedges in vegetable oil

In a ziplock I mixed in 1/2 cup of the starch and a couple table spoons of the seasoning salt.  This was tough to get a good ratio.  I could have gone a little lighter on the seasoning salt.

Place small batches of the wedges in the ziplock bag and shake to coat.  Place wedges on roasting pan.

I sprayed the wedges with an oil mist can just to ensure they got a little more crispy.  You can see in the photo where the mist didn't hit because the starch was still a little loose.

Bake in an oven at 425 for 45 to 60 minutes or until golden brown.  Poke with a fork to ensure the potato is cooked.


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Gluten Free Noodless Butternut Sausage Lasagna

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I don't know what else to do but steal this recipe from www.skinnytaste.com. During a recent trip to Toronto to visit family, Amanda's sister had us over for dinner. She made us the most amazing gluten free lasagna with butternut squash instead of noodles. Like come one, look at this!

I couldn't get enough of it!  It was delicious, from the butternut squash noodles to the sauce she prepared to go with it.  I had seconds!  And in some hurried rush with the kids, I probably had thirds forgetting I had seconds! :-)

Visit Skinny Taste for their full recipe for the Noodless Butternut Squash Lasagna.  In the meantime here is the gist of it:

INGREDIENTS:

14 oz Italian chicken sausage, casing removed
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (28 oz can) crushed tomatoes
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
black pepper, to taste
1 large butternut, peeled (3 lbs)
1 cup part-skim ricotta
1/4 cup Parmigiano Reggiano
2 tbsp chopped parsley
1 large egg
16 oz (4 cups) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

DIRECTIONS:

In a large deep nonstick skillet, brown the sausage breaking the meat up with a wooden spoon until cooked, about 5 minutes. Add onions and garlic and cook until soft, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes, basil, and black pepper. Simmer on low, covered 15 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, slice butternut into 1/8″ thick rounds with a good quality spiralizer such as the Inspiralizer with Blade A. To do this, you have to slice the butternut lengthwise halfway through to the center, careful not to cut deeper than that. You can also use a mandolin (be careful) or a sharp knife.
Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a medium bowl combine ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, parsley and egg, mix.
In a deep 9×12 casserole dish spread 3/4 cup of sauce on the bottom and layer 12 rounds of butternut slices to cover. Spread 3/4 cup of the ricotta cheese mixture, then top with 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese and 1 cup sauce. Second Layer: Lay 12 more rounds of butternut, 3/4 cup ricotta mixture, 1 cup mozzarella and 1 cup sauce. Third Layer: 12 slices butternut, 1 1/2 cups sauce and cover with foil.
Bake covered 30 minutes.
Remove foil, cook uncovered 30 minutes (this helps dry out excess moisture). Top with remaining cheese and bake until the cheese is melted and bubbling, 5 minutes.
Let stand about 5 – 10 minutes before serving.


Once again read more at http://www.skinnytaste.com/noodle-less-butternut-sausage-lasagna


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Gluten Free Nut Free Candy from Dare

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Licorice is probably one of the hardest candies to find gluten free.  As an alternative, I suggest checking out candy from Dare.  Dare seems to be sensitive to all sorts of allergies and has pretty good labeling on their packages.


We recently went on a trip to Toronto to visit family.  We have two young kids that really don't know how to chew gum to help with the air pressure at take off and landing, so I thought to seek out some candy.  One of our daughters has a nut allergy, and nut free candy is REALLY hard to find.  Probably harder to find than candy made without gluten.  I wanted something chewy that they wouldn't be able to go through quickly, so I picked up these Jubes made by Dare clearly labelled peanut free, no artificial flavours, and gluten free.

I know candy is not ideal for everyone, but heck, I have such a sweet tooth, I am happy to have these in the house knowing they are safe both for Amanda and her Celiac, and my daughters nut allergy.

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Soft and Chewy Gluten Free Brownies

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I shared this on on Facebook last week, but I thought I would share the recipe on the blog too because it was so tasty!

My mother n law is always baking amazing treats. When Amanda was diagnosed Celiac, she just took that on as a challenge to experiment even more. Not only has she converted some of her family favourites like honey cake to be gluten free, but she is always look for new gluten free treats to bake.

Check out this recipe she adapted from food.com


Ingredients
  • 2 cups almond butter or sun flower seed butter
  • 2 eggs 
  • 1 1/4 cups agave nectar 
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract 
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
Directions
  • Blend butter until smooth
  • Blend in eggs and then nectar and vanilla 
  • Blend in cocoa, salt and baking soda then fold in chocolate chips
  • Grease a 9c13 baking dish
  • Pour batter into dish
  • Bake at 325 for 35-40 minutes

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Celiac Medical Expenses for Tax Deductions in Canada

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Don't forget your Celiac Expense for the 2017 tax year!

Happy New Year everyone!  With the end of one year, simply (and yes I know obviously), is the beginning of another.  Which means, if you have not in the past (because it is probably too late for the 2016 tax year), start collecting your receipts for purchases of gluten free products.


The Canada Revenue Agency allows you claim incremental costs associated with the purchases of gluten free products.  What does this mean?  It means when doing your taxes, you can claim the difference in cost between what you paid for a loaf of gluten free bread to eat vs. what a non-celiac would pay for a loaf of bread.

What you need to know to make the Celiac Medical Expense claim:
  • A doctors note listing your Celiac Diagnosis and the fact you require a gluten free diet
  • Receipt for each gluten free product purchase
  • A summary showing your calculation for the tax year.
Here is Revenue Canada's Example

1. Item: bread
2. Number of items purchased: 52
3. Average cost of non-GF product: $3.49
4. Average cost of GF product: $6.99
5. Incremental cost (line 4 minus line 3): $6.99 - $3.49 = $3.50
6. Amount to claim (line 5 multiplied by line 2): $3.50 x 52 = $182.00

So why go through this?  Because afterall, it does require some work right?  Well, for me, it is simple, not even really about having Celiac Disease, it is about getting everything you can back from the government.  You work, you pay taxes, and you can get some of that money back.  Why not get as much of that money back as possible!  Am I right?

Check out the Canada Revenue Agency's gluten free section of the website for more details and updates

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