Weekly Menu Plan – February 21, 2010

Last week of February! I say that with such excitement because I am hoping, like a lot of other people, that Spring is closer than our groundhog pal led us to believe. While we do still have significant snow on the ground, the incoming “storm of the week” is predicted to bring rain & not snow. While I am not a huge fan of rain, I will take it over snow right now. The snows of this winter seem to be way too long lasting. They have not been a short-lived snow day here & there & then the ground is clear. They have been full of 8+ inches at a time, multiple school snow days & delays. My kids only went to school 1 full day last week! They had Monday scheduled off, Tuesday was a snow day and Wednesday & Thursday were 2-hour delays. The previous week was no better.

Moving along. While on the treadmill for my 12 mile long run yesterday, I had plenty of time to read my new Vegetarian Times. I am not a vegetarian, but I do enjoy many vegetarian meals & I love this magazine. I love that they have ads for gluten-free foods in the magazine – this month it is Food for Life’s new Gluten-free English Muffins. I can’t wait to get my hands on those. I also like that they have a page each month, called “gluten-free pantry” dedicated to cooking or baking gluten-free. This month amaranth is spotlighted. There are also many recipes that can be easily converted to be gluten-free or already use gluten-free flour. One that caught my eye this month is the one for Maple Pecan Sables. I am giving these a shot today & will make sure to let you know how they turn out.

Manda at Asparagus Thin is hosting this week’s gluten-free menu swap. Her choice ingredient of the week is radish. I don’t use radish for much other than when I make a vegetable or relish tray or cut up in my salads. I am very interested to see some recipes incorporating radishes.

Sunday – Rotisserie Chicken, Parmesan Pea Risotto, green beans & salad

Monday-Salmon, baked potato, asparagus & salad

Tuesday- Spaghetti with roasted eggplant & mariutta, salad

Wednesday-Turkey Burgers, sweet potato french fries, broccoli & salad

Thursday-Grilled BBQ Chix Breast, roasted acorn squash, okra & salad

Friday -Pizza – make your own individual pizzas & salad

Saturday-Breakfast for dinner

Baked Goods

Maple Pecan Sables

Homemade waffles


Don’t forget to check out Orgjunkie for more menu ideas.


Some highlights from the past week in case you may have missed them:

P.F. Chang’s adding several new gluten-free dishes to their menu in March.

Local Columbus people – Holiday Baking Company is now offering gluten-free lasagna.

There was a recall that was expanded this past week. You can read about it here.

I got some exciting news on the writing front. You can check it out here.

I reviewed You Bars – there is also a discount code in the post for all orders!

This is the last week to get your discount on Zing Bars.

I reveiewed Gluten Free Houston’s carrot & coffee cakes.

I made pancakes for Fat Tuesday.

I reviewed some Kinnikinnick products.

I hope you all have a great week!!

Product Review: You Bars

A couple weeks back I received a complimentary pacakge of samples from You Bar. You Bar is a company that allows you to creat your own, personalized bars, shakes, cereals, trail mix & cookies.

You Bar was launched in 2006 after the mother-son founders, Ava Bise and Anthony Flynn, began creating protein bars at home to meet their taste, health and allergy needs. They loved eating their unique bars so much that they thought there would be a huge market for protein bars made freshly to customers’ own taste and nutritional needs. Anthony, who had just graduated from business school (and has always had an irrepressible entrepreneurial spirit), said to his mom: “Let’s launch a nutrition bar company,” and she replied: “Yes, if we can customize them like the ones we make at home.” And so, in a small commercial kitchen in Los Angeles, You Bar was born out of a basic concept-you are what you eat, so choose!®

Our revolutionary You Bar® fresh, customized energy bars are based on the belief that nobody else should decide what tastes good to us or what is good for our bodies. We have been giving our customers a choice with You Bars since 2006.

With You Bar®:
You choose the ingredients and the bar size.
You view the nutrition facts of your energy bar while you are creating it.
Your box of bars is hand made fresh-to-order and shipped to your door with a satisfaction guarantee. If you don’t love your bars, you’ll get a new box free of charge.
Your customized nutrition facts and your chosen bar name are printed on each individual bar package.
Friendly telephone customer support is available to answers questions and provide helpful recommendations.

Here are the products that I recieved:


There were 2 samples I received that were not gluten-free, so I passed them along to Aaron. 🙂

Breakfast Bar– Deglet noor dates, Egg white powder, Honey, Cocoa Powder, Instant Coffee Crystals (caffeinated), Cinnamon. Great flavor, especially with the coffee. Great pre-run fuel. 8 g protein!

Honey Cashew Bar -Cashew Butter, Honey, Whey Protein, Nutty Rice Cereal, Organic Honey. I had this bar for a on-the-go breakfast one morning when I had to fast for a blood test. It was filling (10g protein) and tasted great! Loved the crunch of the Nutty Rice Cereal in it.

Great Date with Chocolate -Organic Dates, Whey Protein Isolate, Organic Honey, Cocoa. I ate this bar this morning before my long run & it was a great choice. Kept me fueled & feeling great. I love that these bars have protein in them! Loved the chocolate flavor!

The Best Trail Mix -Almonds, Organic Cashews, Walnuts, Organic Sunflower Seeds, Dried Sweetened Blueberries, Sweetened Cranberries, Sun Drops Original Chocolate Candies. Hannah loved this and only allowed me a small sampling Great combination.

Vanilla Dream -Soy Protein, Organic Cane Juice, Organic Vanilla Powder. Jon had this shake & he said while the flavor wasn’t bad, it was chalky. He didn’t use a blender, but stirred it up and added ice.

Breakfast Shake – Whey Protein, Egg White Powder, Organic Cane Juice, Cocoa Powder, Organic Bananas. I haven’t tried this shake yet, but hope to get to it soon!

Blended Bliss – Whey Protein, Organic Cane Juice, Organic Strawberries, Organic Bananas, Organic Vanilla. I used a blender with this shake & mixed it with Almond Breeze (unsweetened vanilla). I love the flavor! Great protein – 14 grams! I used this to refuel this AM after my long run. This was not chalky at all. Maybe the blender is the key?


I was very impressed by the flavor & nutritional stats of the You Bar products. My 12 mile run today was fueled before & after by You Bar products. I felt great during the run & feel great now, too. I am always on the lookout for products that I can fuel with that don’t upset my stomach or fill me up too much that I feel too full during my runs. You Bar definitely fits the bill.

Have you tried You Bar products? If not, here is your chance to get a 5% discount off of your order! Just enter the code: GFLife at checkout. You can order your own You Bar products by clicking here.

Product Review- Gluten Free Houston Coffee Cake & Carrot Cake

I was the very lucky recipient of some complimentary samples of some baked goods from Gluten Free Houston. Gluten Free Houston is located in Houston – I bet you didn’t pick up on that one! 😉

Here is some more information on Gluten Free Houston & Randi Markowitz:

Are you in search of gluten-free solutions for yourself or a family
member? Are you in the Houston area? Then, I can help. I have
spent the last six years developing my own hand-made gluten-free
baked goods. When I first started out, all I came up with were
lumps of bricks! It’s not easy to produce really good baked goods
without the gluten protein found only in wheat, barley and rye
flours. It is complicated and time consuming, but I have hit on a
formula that works. Even my non gluten-free friends think everything
is fantastic. As you probably already know, living gluten-free
is somewhat expensive–the ingredients are very pricey, but very
high quality. I decided that if I am going to take the time and effort
to bake things for myself, my family members and friends who do
not eat wheat, it might as well be the best it can be, with the best
ingredients. It’s impossible to produce fresh gluten-free baked
goods on a large scale. Everything has to be frozen and it’s really
not very good. When it’s hand-made and fresh, it is fabulous. If
you are a gluten-free person, you don’t have to have baked items
with weird aftertastes, grainy stuff in your mouth, and that strange,
slightly “off” taste. You can and should have the best. Bear with
me here, because these items are not inexpensive. However, I can
guarantee that they are much better than anything you can buy
that is frozen, and better than any mass-produced fresh items.
That is why I am doing it my way—very small selection of items, in
very small quantities, that are available fresh and delicious. Otherwise,
why bother?

Gluten Free Houston is also on Facebook, Twitter and has a blog.

I had the pleasure of sampling the Cinnamon Coffee Cake & Carrot Cake.


Carrot Cake -Fabulous carrot cake muffin loaf, 12 oz., ingredients: sorghum flour, tapioca flour, cornstarch, baking soda, salt, xanthan gum, cinnamon, sugar, eggs, canola oil, buttermilk, vanilla, carrots, pineapple, coconut. Arrived a little crumbly, but that did not effect the taste. The taste was outstanding – one of the moistest cakes I have ever had. The texture was perfect and you can actually taste the chunks of pineapple in the cake. Jon & Lindsey both loved this cake, too.


Cinnamon Coffee Cake -Our fantastic gluten-free 12 oz. cinnamon coffee cake. Stays delicious and fresh on your counter or in the refrigerator for days. It’s one of our most popular items. Ingredients: sugar, vegetable oil, eggs, sour cream, vanilla, sorghum flour, tapioca flour, potato starch, salt, baking powder, xanthan gum. Wonderful flavor & texture. Jon wouldn’t let many pieces out of his sight. Lindsey also enjoyed this cake.


You can purchase items from Gluten Free Houston on their website or in these locations. Right now there is free shipping in Texas with any order of $24 or more!

I Won!!! WOOHOOO!!

I won a prize from Foodie Blogroll!!! I won a copy of the $5 Dinner Mom Cookbook by Erin Chase! I am so excited!! I love to win things.

If you blog and don’t belong to Foodie Blogroll, you should go sign up! There are contests to enter every week. Lots of fun info, too.

The Foodie Blog Roll Contests: Winner!


I also wanted to share that I did a lot of soul searching about what I wanted to give up for Lent. I had toyed with the idea of meat/fish, but after my physical on Monday and really thinking about it, I thought that giving up meat/fish during marathon training probably wasn’t the greatest idea. I am not saying that people can’t train for a marathon while being vegetarian or vegan, but I have no experience in either area other than an occasional vegetarian day – not 40 days straight. What I have opted to give up is all alchohol. I don’t drink a lot, but I do like to enjoy a glass of wine with dinner a few nights a week. So, now I can be held accountable. 🙂 So far, so good. No desire to even have a glass of wine. Give me a few more days. 😉

Crave Bakery Contest

Hey guys – Happy Friday! I believe that we are in for a heat wave here today. The temp will finally be above freezing for the first time in a long time.

I mainly wanted to tell you about this great contest that Heidi over at Adventures of a Gluten-free Mom is having. Go check it out & you could win a 12-pack of Crave’s Dark Chocolate Brownies! YUM!

Live Gluten Freely & Eggland’s Best

Have you guys checked out the new site by General Mills, Live Gluten Freely? General Mills is one of the most gluten-free-friendly companies out there. They now have over 250 gluten-free products!! You can view the list of the products here. I noticed that they have added some products to the list, such as frostings, Green Giant Steamers, a few more soups and yogurt. The site has so much useful information.

I am thrilled to share with you all that I will be contributing blog entries to Live Gluten Freely beginning with the site’s re-launch in March!  I am so excited about this opportunity!  I love what General Mills has done for the gluten-free/Celiac community.

Live Gluten Freely also has a recipe page that they hope to grow to over 100 recipes. There are some great ideas there. I particularly like the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bars with Chocolate Frosting and the Brownie Ganache Torte with Raspberries.

You can also follow Live Gluten Free on Facebook. This is a great place to interact with others who are also gluten-free.


As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker program, I received a coupon for some Eggland’s Best Eggs. I eat eggs daily for breakfast, so I was excited to give the Eggland’s Best a try.



I usually make a spinach, tomato & egg white frittata for breakfast, so these came in very handy. I did notice a difference in taste from the traditional, white grocery store eggs – in a good way. I have also been enjoying them in the form of fried egg sandwiches on gluten-free bread spread with a little hummus. Perfect lunch!

Here is some more info from Eggland’s Best:

Eggland’s Best Eggs Are Now Even More Nutritious

Eggland’s Best now provides even better nutrition for your family. Compared to ordinary eggs, EBs deliver even higher levels of important nutrients like vitamin A, D, E, B2 and B12, along with lower levels of saturated fat and cholesterol. All this combined with their delicious, farm-fresh taste, is why EB continues to stand for the very best in quality and value for your family.

If you are like me, you are curious as to how the Eggland’s Best egg is more nutritious than other eggs. Here is what Eggland’s Best has to say about that topic:

Special, Unique Hen Feed

It all starts with the special Eggland’s Best hen feed. Eggland’s Best hen feed is a patented all-natural, all-vegetarian feed that contains healthy grains, canola oil, and an all-natural supplement of rice bran, alfalfa, sea kelp and Vitamin E. The Eggland’s Best hen feed contains no animal fat, no animal by-products, and no recycled or processed food. Eggland’s Best never uses hormones, steroids, or antibiotics of any kind. Simply put, because the Eggland’s Best hen diet is superior, Eggland’s Best hens lay nutritionally superior eggs.

Nutritional Benefits

Eggland’s Best eggs contain ten times more Vitamin E than ordinary eggs, 100 mg of Omega 3, shown to be beneficial to cardiac health, 25% less Saturated Fat, and 200 mcg of Lutein, shown to contribute to eye health. In addition, one Eggland’s Best large white egg contains just 175 mg of Cholesterol compared to 215 mg in an ordinary egg. Proven by clinical studies performed at the Medical College of Pennsylvania, and published in the Journal of Nutrition, and the Journal of Applied Nutrition, Eggland’s Best eggs can be part of a cholesterol-reducing diet when eaten in place of more fatty foods.

Very interesting. I had no idea. Do you eat eggs? Do you buy Eggland’s Best?

Fat Tuesday – The Gluten-Free Way

What is Fat Tuesday? Here is a little background for you from Wikipedia –

The terms “Mardi Gras”, “Mardi Gras season”, and “Carnival season”, in English, refer to events of the Carnival celebrations, beginning on or after the Epiphany and ending on the day before Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras is French for “Fat Tuesday” (in ethnic English tradition, Shrove Tuesday), referring to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season, which started on Ash Wednesday. Related popular practices were associated with celebrations before the fasting and religious obligations associated with the penitential season of Lent. Popular practices included wearing masks and costumes, overturning social conventions, dancing, sports competitions, parades, etc. Similar expressions to Mardi Gras appear in other European languages sharing the Christian tradition. In English, the day is called Shrove Tuesday, associated with the religious requirement for confession before Lent begins.

In many areas, the term “Mardi Gras” has come to mean the whole period of activity related to the celebratory events, beyond just the single day. In some US cities, it is now called “Mardi Gras Day” or “Fat Tuesday. The festival season varies from city to city, as some traditions consider Mardi Gras the entire period between Epiphany or Twelfth Night and Ash Wednesday. Others treat the final three-day period before Ash Wednesday as the Mardi Gras. In Mobile, Alabama, Mardi Gras-associated social events begin in November, followed by mystic society balls on Thanksgiving, then New Year’s Eve, followed by parades and balls in January and February, celebrating up to midnight before Ash Wednesday. In earlier times parades were held on New Year’s Day. Other cities famous for Mardi Gras celebrations include Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, Quebec City, Quebec in Canada; Mazatlan in Mexico; and New Orleans, Louisiana in the United States. Many other places have important Mardi Gras celebrations as well.

Carnival is an important celebration in Catholic European nations. In the United Kingdom and Ireland, the week before Ash Wednesday is called “shrovetide”, ending on Shrove Tuesday. It has its popular celebratory aspects as well. Pancakes are a traditional food. Pancakes and related fried breads or pastries made with sugar, fat and eggs are also traditionally consumed at this time in many parts of Latin America and the Caribbean.

When I was growing up, we always called it “Shrove Tuesday”, as I was raised Episcopalian. I remember going to church on Shrove Tuesday for a pancake dinner. Mmmm!! We often spoke of what we would be giving up for Lent at dinner that night.


Now that we are gluten-free, I make our pancakes at home. I usually use Pamela’s Pancake & Baking Mix for our pancakes, but today I decided to use my complimentary sample of Jules Gluten-Free Flour. I quickly found an easy recipe for “Flapjacks” on Jules website. This recipe made 9 pancakes for us. I topped them with butterscotch chips & syrup & Jon had a wonderful, snow day breakfast.

I made a couple changes to the recipe:

  • I used Instant Non-fat Dry Milk (it was all I had) in place of the Dari-Free™ Non-Dairy Milk
    Powder (or dry dairy or soy milk powder)
  • I used skim milk for the milk

While I am a huge fan of Pamela’s Products, I think that these pancakes have got the Pamela’s Pancake Mix beat. They are probably the closest thing I have tried compared to gluten-filled pancakes. I asked Jon which he preferred & he said these, hands down. The texture is key and it is just perfect!


You can purchase Jules Gluten-Free Flour here.  There is also a coupon I posted about yesterday for a free e-Cookbook with 13 of the most requested recipes included!

Will you have pancakes today? How do you celebrate Fat Tuesday/Shrove Tuesday/Mardi Gras?

Product Review: Kinnikinnick Gluten-free Products

I was the lucky recepient of a large box of complimentary samples from Kinnikinnick. I had emailed them inquiring about the newer products in their line – Panko Style Breadcrumbs, Fudge KinniTOOs and Graham Cracker Crumbs and they were more than happy to send samples along. Kinnikinnick has been a company whose products I have been eating since I first went gluten-free over 4 years ago. I remember my first trip to Whole Foods and the nicest young man told me about Kinnikinnick and I bought my first bag of bagels that day. You can read the history of Kinnikinnick here. I especially like their mission statement:

Our Corporate Philosophy
Kinnikinnick Foods is a company focused on our customers. We provide high quality food products to people with special needs. For these people, the choices are limited, often unpalatable and sometimes not available at all. We recognize that for these people the simple act of buying and preparing basic food is difficult at best. The enjoyment of “exotic” foods, like a hamburger, a bagel, a pizza or a donut is sometimes just a fond remembrance. Some children have never tasted a donut until they try one of ours. We take great satisfaction in providing our products to those people with special dietary needs in all regions of North America. Our office receives numerous calls every week simply thanking us for helping them with their conditions and making a difference in their lives.

Kinnikinnick Foods will continue to improve and expand our line of specialty products. We believe that more and more people will enjoy our line of products and view them as healthy and satisfying alternatives to other food lines. We will continue to be one of the leading producers of Alternative Foods in the coming years.

Here is a picture of some of the items that Kinnikinnick sent to me.


They also sent along frozen doughnuts, pizza crusts & English Muffins.

The Chocolate Dipped Doughnuts


English Muffin as a base for a tuna melt.


Cinnamon Sugar Doughnuts


Montana’s Chocolate Chip Cookies & KinniToos Fudge Creme Cookies.


Pizza on the frozen pizza crust.


We are thrilled with Kinnikinnick’s products. There hasn’t been one that we tried that we didn’t love. Jon begs for the doughnuts & pizza crust all the time. The cookies, especially the chocolate chip cookies, were very impressive. They had a nice crunch, texture & flavor. The chocolate chip cookies only have 36 calories per cookie.

We still have a few products to sample, but I wanted to get this stuff shared. I am using the Panko bread crumbs to make chicken parmesan this coming weekend, so watch for a post with the recipe next week.

Kinnikinnick’s products can be found in mainstream grocery stores, though they may only have select items. You can also order right from their website. They have a flat shipping rate of only $10.

Jules Gluten-free Flour – Free e-Cookbook – One Day Left

If you haven’t taken advantage of this fabulous coupon yet, you must do so before the coupon expires! Jules Gluten Free is offering a free copy of Jule’s Baker’s Dozen – a collection of her most requested recipes. All you have to do to get it is click here and enter the coupon code: bakers1 (case sensitive).

If you haven’t tried Jules Gluten Free Flour, you are missing out. I have a review in the process of being written that used her flour & I can’t say enough good things about it.

Product Review: Wow Baking Company Cookies

I received a sample of a Wow Baking Company Chocolate Chip Cookie the other day. The cookie was big, like those I remember buying at the mall in my pre-gluten-free days at Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory or Mrs. Field’s. I quickly split the cookie in half & hid my half because I knew that once Jon set eyes on this cookie I had no chance of getting any.

More about Wow Baking Company:

Our home is in the Pacific Northwest, an environment of inspiration for All-Natural products and an area supporting “green” business practices. In 2007 we grew out of our production kitchen. This year we were excited to move into our new offices and production facility built to meet the growing demand for our products.

Susan Howe, our Director of Product Development is passionate about creating the best tasting WOW baked goods. With a true love for baking, Susan spends countless hours mixing and baking until she has mastered the ultimate blend of ingredients. After the WOW team gets a chance to devour her creations, Susan evaluates the comments and refines the recipie to perfection.

At WOW BAKING we are dedicated to creating the best tasting All Natural Wheat and Gluten-free baked goods found anywhere.
We love to hear people say “WOW” when they try our products. Let us know what flavors have you saying “WOW”.

WOW BAKING COMPANY has re-defined Wheat and Gluten-Free Baked Goods.We make our products in small batches with premium all Natural ingredients creating DELICIOUS tasting Fresh baked Cookies and Brownies.


This picture can’t do this cookie justice. This cookie was amazing. I know that I use that word a lot, but I really can’t stress how good this cookie was. Maybe next time I will go with one of these words that just came up in a thesaurus search for amazing: awesome, fascinating, incredible, marvelous, prodigious, shocking, stunning, surprising, unbelievable, wonderful. I actually had to double & triple check the ingredients to make sure there was no gluten in it. Jon wasn’t home when I tried the cookie, so I called him to get his thoughts & he said the same exact thing that I said. I honestly wasn’t expecting them to be as good as they were. I don’t mean that in a bad way, I don’t know why I even thought it. Perhaps it was because the cookie was so big? I think maybe I thought it would be dry & crumbly? It was anything but. The flavor & texture were just as good as any gluten-filled cookie that I remember. I want to know where these cookies have been hiding for all the time that I have been gluten-free.

You can find Wow Baking Company cookies in these locations or you can purchase them online at Amazon.com. If you would like to try these out for yourself, just go here, tell your story & get a free cookie.

Related Posts with Thumbnails