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Hard Time Coping


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27 replies to this topic

#1 clanning

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 11:57 AM

:( I am having a VERY hard time staying on a strict gluten-free diet. I'm 34 yrs old and cook for 7. Most of the foods I have tasted are not very good. I HATE shopping for foods that I can eat, it takes way too long to shop. Not to metion preparing meals for my family a night is just as bad. I feel that I can not deprive them because of me and can not justify cooking a seperate meal for myself.

We eat out A LOT and have many get together w/ friends. Once again, I am the only one w/ a special diet and do not like to inconvience them.

By not being on the gluten-free diet I have paid the price. It not longer makes me physically sick because my stomach and intestines are shot. Totally gone. I take so many meds that I hate taking them but do, but not on a regular basis. I do get strick w/ those when I'm miserable from things NOT working. I was told in Feb. 04 that I would not be around in 3 yrs. if I keep this up.

Can anyone offer something? I live in Kansas City, MO. I know of 2 resturants that are gluten-free (PF Changs & Out Back) Hy-Vee grocery store h as given me a gluten-free book of products but that seems to be more of a hassle to take the time to look for the certain product. I don't know of any good recipes that are good and it makes it very hard. Not to mention, I'm not a very good cook to begin with.

I don't like or want things like breads, pasta's, cookies, cakes, etc. It's the things I use to cook w/ that makes it imposs. to cook or eat right. It's the additives that are killing me.

Any information is appreciative.

Charlotte
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#2 crc0622

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 12:16 PM

Charlotte,
You have got to take the time to take care of yourself! Who is going to cook for your family if you are gone in three years?? Take the time to do it now while you still can. You are too young to be so miserable! My first recommendation is to check out this website: http://forums.delphi...om/celiac/start
It is another forum similar to this one but one of the moderators is a chef/owns her own restaurant and posts lots and lots of recipes every day. You can go back through the archives and look at them. Most are not hard to do at all and it may give you some ideas for food you haven't thought of. Scroll down the home page and you'll see links for product lists (the best list I've seen), recipes, lots of useful information. This is a great site for support, but not much on recipes!
We cook for friends all the time and stay mostly with grilling meat, fresh veggies, potato salad, etc. There are so many good things to eat that don't come from a box! The processed foods will kill you even if they don't have gluten! If you can plan ahead and make more than one meal at a time, it really is easy. Cook a lot of meat one day and use leftovers for salads or casseroles another day. Make twice as much veggies, etc. Cook on weekends for the week.
If you can give me some ideas of what you used to make that you're having trouble with, maybe I can help you to convert it. Don't give up. It will get easier!
Celeste
Jacksonville,FL
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#3 tarnalberry

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 12:27 PM

The good news is that you CAN cook all kinds of healthy, tasty foods (that will feed seven people!) and have it all be gluten-free and not take ages and ages. The bad news is that you're going to have to learn how to cook. :-)

Check out this post from a few days ago talking about the different types of foods that some of us eat on a regular basis. It might give you some ideas.

For me, I was already doing a fair amount of cooking, and used whole foods (not packaged stuff) anyway, so it wasn't nearly as big of a transition for me to go gluten-free as many other people. So could you give us an idea of what it is that you usually do cook and eat at home that you are having a hard time getting away from. It might make it easier for us to suggest some things that are similar, but easy to make gluten-free.

For instance, some of the things I like to eat, that are nice and fast, are bean salads (canned beans, onion, vegetables if you like (grated carrots or zucchini, chopped cauliflower, corn if you tolerate it, chopped cooked beets, etc.), cumin, garlic salt, ancho chili powder), stir fries (vegetables (a combo I like is bell peppers, onions, and snow peas) with chicken or beef and some gluten-free tarmari) served over rice, sweet potatoe oven-fries, veggie pieces (bell pepper, zucchini, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, tomatoes) served with bean dip or hummus, homemade ground turkey pasta sauce served over rice or rice pasta, and homemade chili. None of these is terribly involved, and most are one-dirty-dish meals ('cause I HATE cleaning dishes!). The produce department and spice aisle is what provides the majority of the flavor in my food!
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Tiffany aka "Have I Mentioned Chocolate Lately?"
Inconclusive Blood Tests, Positive Dietary Results, No Endoscopy
G.F. - September 2003; C.F. - July 2004
Hiker, Yoga Teacher, Engineer, Painter, Be-er of Me
Bellevue, WA

#4 j9n

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 02:18 PM

What types of foods are you having trouble with? I find we can eat alot of the foods we ate before with slight modifications. I love to cook and so maybe I can help you with some new recipes? I go to costco and buy alot of staples in bulk so I don't have to shop so often. I am sure there are others who have good food suggestions too.
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#5 clanning

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 02:54 PM

I make a lot of mexican food, taco's & enchilada's. Anything to spice up dull/boring chicken (mainly for me), I need ideals of marinades, soups to cook w/ for thickening. I use a lot cream of chicken, mushroom, etc.) stir fry's can't find anything like teriyaki (soy sauce's not sure of but doesn't give the same taste or effect) My family love's pasta's so there for when I make pasta something I can't eat it (haven't found a good gluten-free pasta) Rice, how do you spruce up rice. My family loves Lipton's rice packages.

I try to make casseroles, cheesy potatos (family loves)

I bake a lot for my family. They love sweets and now that I've been told this is a do or die situatin for me, I WANT those cookies, brownies etc.. I've never had that problem before!!!

I question the following items:

Williams Chili seasoning, Taco seasoning,

Here's a quick list that I went through my pantry to see what I use and I can't eat but would like to figure out some alternative to.

Enchilada sauce, pasta, gravies, marinades, soups, stir fry sauce, seaoning pouches, veggie dips.

Where do you all find your gluten-free items?

I eat A LOT of salads!!! I'm tired of salads, veggies, fruit.

I guess my BIGGEST problem of all is that I feel so guilty of making my family suffer due to me. I have a mixed family, step children and my own. I have a half support spouse. He's like eat what ever you want, stop complaining and then the next day he's your not to be eating that.

I've got breakfast down and lunch is mostly salads.

I almost feel like I need a sponsor for an adict. Today I've very upset about this. I've just recently had to have surgery and it hasn't gone well. And I know it's because of not being on a strict gluten-free diet. I could go on forever what I've gone through since February of this year.

I've had this for 9 yrs and lost a lot of weight. I'm gaining weight and that is my other problem. I DON'T want too. I've gained 20 lbs. since trying to stay gluten free.

I think I need this informative/chat room more than I realized. Just through me some recipe's to my email address clanning5@comcast.net and I guess I'll start trying new things.

Charlotte
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#6 catfish

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 03:51 PM

I think most of your seasonings and such can be substituted fairly well. I would suggest reading general cook books, both gluten-free and regular. Check your library for cook books with Mexican foods, you will find that most dishes like tacos, enchiladas, and such are very easy to make from scratch with basic ingredients and no seasoning mixes, and are naturally gluten free!

When I make tacos, I chop an onion and sautee it with or without garlic, add ground beef and brown it and then season it with a bit of ground chili powder and cumin with a little salt. It's better than any mix you can buy and since the ingredients are all scratch you won't be so worried about whether you are eating gluten-free.

For enchilada sauce you can buy some dried chilis and soak them in a little hot water for an hour, blend them in the blender with the water and a can of tomato sauce, season it with salt, garlic and cumin and there you have it.

For salad dressing I usually use vinegar (balsamic, wine or apple cider vinegar) and olive oil. If I'm feeling more adventurous I'll add some onion powder, garlic powder, crushed red pepper, salt, black pepper and some dried herbs like basil and thyme; let it soak overnight before using and you have a great Italian dressing.

There is a recipe for creamy soup mix somewhere around here, I've never used it but it looks fairly simple.

For Teryaki, simply mix 1 part Tamari wheat-free soy sauce with 1/2 part pineapple juice, add a little crushed or grated ginger, some garlic, and if you like you can add a bit of sesame oil.

Most of these things I prepare more than I'll need and store them in empty bottles or jars that I lable with a sharpie marker; be sure to add the date so you know how old they are. Things like Teryaki sauce and salad dressing can store for a long time in the refridgerator. Others, like the enchilada sauce, you can pour into a freezer bag (or make a big batch and pour it into several single-use bags) and freeze it until you need it.

For pasta, most people on this forum seem to really like Tinkyada rice pasta. I use this for convenience, but I don't really like it very much so i make my own from scratch. It is a lot of work, but if you're interested I can send you the recipe I use. I make a double batch, roll and cut the noodles and freeze them in individual portions so that they just need to be dropped in boiling water. I usually make my own pasta seperate from my family's but make sauce we can all eat together.

For sweets, try Pamela's chocolate Chunk cookies. There are also a lot of recipes that you can make yourself, but I'm not a big sweets eater so I haven't made these as much.

If you want more specific information on any of this stuff let me know! I'd be happy to share what I've learned so far, although I'm still learning a lot!
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#7 GFdoc

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 04:06 PM

Hi Charlotte-
I'm a mom of 3 and the only celiac in my house...
My advice...is make your dinners all gluten free...believe me, you're not depriving your family at all...gluten-free meals can be and usually are delicious and indistinguishable from nonGF meals. If you want to add something nonGF, then serve some rolls on the side (you can make your own gluten-free rolls, or just skip it). I find dinners the most complicated meal...so just make one for everyone.

Breakfast seems to me the meal that is most different (gluten-free vs. nonGF) so make breakfast the meal to serve all the gluten-type foods (waffles, pancakes,sweetbreads, danish, donuts, etc .) Also lunches can be made nonGF - especially if you pack lunchboxes for school age kids.

Back to dinner....make a calandar of meals for the week ahead, make sure you have the ingredients you need and premake some of the stuff to make it go faster on the day you cook. Teriacki and other sauces can be made gluten-free - make a bigger batch and store the extra in a bottle/jar in the fridge for next time. (look for recipes in any cookbook or online www.cooks.com but convert to gluten-free). For dry spice mixes, again make abunch ahead of time and store in ziploc bags.
Dinners at our house are meat/chicken/fish and a veggie and/or starch. One night is chili, one night stir-fry, one night fish, one night chicken breasts, one night pasta (OK, I make my own gluten-free pasta and they eat regular pasta)Easy enough. There are incredible desserts (choc. chip cookies, brownies, etc. that my kids BEG for - they don't even know or care that they are gluten-free)

Resources for gluten-free products and premade mixes:
Gluten free pantry www.gluten free.com **the best brownie mix by far!!
Gluten free mall www.celiac.com
Whole Foods stores (ask at desk for gluten-free food list)
Trader Joes foodstores
Gluten Free Market www.glutenfreemarket.com

Good gluten-free cookbooks (celiac.com sells them, or check at library)
The Gluten Free Kitchen by Roben Ryberg
The Gluten Free Gourmet-Living Well Without Wheat by Bette Hagman

I'll email you some of my basic recipes.
Stick with it...it gets easier, I promise. Plus, you'll feel better and that helps a ton!
Sara, Chicago
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Sara gluten-free since 9/03

#8 Canadian Karen

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 04:17 PM

Charlotte,

First of all, welcome to the forum - you will find an abundant supply of support here....

Please reconsider your position on not taking the gluten-free diet, it is not as daunting as it looks, really.......

I really terrified me at first, I thought "There is no way I can stick to this...." But after a while, I realized, "Hey, I'm a meat and potatoes kinda gal, I CAN DO THIS!!!!" We bbq quite a lot, lots of red meat for protein, salads, baked potatoes, rice...... After 1 1/2 years, I really don't miss the cakes, cookes, breads, anymore, I don't even think of them.... For breakfast, I do have toast with gluten-free rice almond bread, or carrot muffins (I don't have time to bake with four small kids including 3 yr old twin boys!! - this is my one luxury - I go to the health food store and buy those items along with my gluten-free vegetable stock and gluten-free chicken boullion...)
Also, I work full time so baking would have to be done at midnight if I was going to do it - NOT!!!!

You have to remember that your family needs you - you are not giving yourself and your health the priority it deserves...... Sure, it might be easy now to just be non-chalant about the strict gluten-free diet, but you will pay dearly in the long run.... Besides, don't you think your family would rather adopt to your gluten-free lifestyle and support you in this now - rather than having to live through you being diagnosed with bowel cancer, and slowly deteriorating, putting your family through hell? If I had to choose between the two, the gluten-free lifestyle would be my first choice!!!

Please research on the internet "Refractory Celiac Disease" - print out an article about it and show it to your family - TELL them you need their assistance and support as your willpower doesn't seem to get you through it..... I don't think either you or your family is taking the consequences very seriously.....

My prayers are with you that you will find the strength to succeed with this diet....

Hugs.
Karen
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Karen

positive bloodwork, positive biopsy
Celiac, collagenous colitis, hypothyroidism
endometriosis (at age 20)
spinal stenosis (early 20's)

Biopsy August 2006 confirmed complete villous atrophy despite being gluten-free for years and bloodwork within range showing compliance with diet. Doctor has confirmed diagnosis of Refractory Celiac Sprue.
Endoscopy also showed numerous stomach ulcers, have started taking Losec.

Mother to Eileen 13 yrs
Rhiannon 8 yrs
Daniel & Connor 6 yr twin boys......

"Joyfulness keeps the heart and face young. A good laugh makes us better friends with ourselves and everybody around us."
Orison Swett Marden


Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.
-- Victor Borge



"An optimist laughs to forget. A pessimist forgets to laugh."
Tom Nansbury


"Doctor to patient: I have good news and bad news. The good news is that you are not a hypochondriac."
Unknown

#9 Canadian Karen

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 04:20 PM

Also, forgot to mention, Kraft is an amazing company when it comes to listing their gluten.....

Go to their website, they have a complete list of gluten-free products, I use it all the time. I use their bbq sauces, the salad dressings, etc. There is an amazing selection we can choose from.....

Good Luck!
Karen
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Karen

positive bloodwork, positive biopsy
Celiac, collagenous colitis, hypothyroidism
endometriosis (at age 20)
spinal stenosis (early 20's)

Biopsy August 2006 confirmed complete villous atrophy despite being gluten-free for years and bloodwork within range showing compliance with diet. Doctor has confirmed diagnosis of Refractory Celiac Sprue.
Endoscopy also showed numerous stomach ulcers, have started taking Losec.

Mother to Eileen 13 yrs
Rhiannon 8 yrs
Daniel & Connor 6 yr twin boys......

"Joyfulness keeps the heart and face young. A good laugh makes us better friends with ourselves and everybody around us."
Orison Swett Marden


Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.
-- Victor Borge



"An optimist laughs to forget. A pessimist forgets to laugh."
Tom Nansbury


"Doctor to patient: I have good news and bad news. The good news is that you are not a hypochondriac."
Unknown

#10 GEF

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 05:51 PM

Charlotte,

Have you consided or are a part of a local support group? I don't know if they're close to you or not, but they might be worth checking out:

Missouri
Tri Lakes Celiac Support Group (Kimberling City)
B. Hicks, Contact
417.739.2703
honedu@mchsi.com


Hang in there. Any inconvenience to your family is certainly less of a price than losing the health of their mother. Your first priority is to take care of your body so you can take care of them, right? Even in a airplane they first tell you to put the O2 mask on yourself, right? We'll be here to support you.

Gretchen
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#11 tarnalberry

 
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Posted 23 August 2004 - 05:51 PM

clanning - most of those packaged things you rely on you can make yourself - and make them gluten free. it will end up being a bit more time consuming if you want to make cream of mushroom soup to thicken things instead of just using mushrooms, cream, and potato or rice flour. but you can go either way.

mexican food is probably the easiest thing to make gluten free - so much of it is naturally gluten free already. you'll probably have to make your own enchiliada sauce - but it's very simple. (tomato sauce, chicken broth or stock, spices (I use a touch of cumin, some cayanne, some salt, and a bunch of chili power); cooked down until it's the consistency you want (about 30 minutes for me).) and, of course, the rest of the enchiladas are naturally gluten free. (for chicken ones, I just use cooked onions and shredded cooked chicken, with plenty of the same spices that went into the enchilada sauce - and a touch of the enchilada sauce. for vegetarian ones, I usually use a combination of shredded carrots and zucchini, beans, onions, and sometimes cheese. all rolled in corn tortillas, of course.)

tacos also are very easy, though I often rely on Spice Hunter's fajita seasoning instead of making my own mix of paprika, oregano, cumin, ancho or chili powder, and garlic. (I always use ground turkey, a touch of olive oil, and onions that I make sure don't get cooked too far, plenty of spice, and then into corn tortillas. served with red onions, tomatoes, lettuce, cheese, sour cream, guacamole, or whatever you want...)

for some stir fries, soy sauce is sufficient, but you need to use very flavorful vegetables in it, and it's just a very simple stir fry. if you want to do a teriyaki stir-fry (like chicken or salmon), you'll probably have to make your own teriyaki sauce, but that too is easy. (my version of teriyaki sauce is equal parts soy sauce and pineapple juice, a touch less mirin (japanese rice wine), 3-4 tablespoons sugar per cup of liquid, and 1-2 tsp fresh ginger per cup of liquid, simmered down for quite a while - about an hour for me. this makes quite a bit, and you can save it in the fridge.)

as for how to spruce up rice... there are so many ways. you can make it with broth and a gluten-free boullion cube instead of water. you can always serve it with the stir fry, and use the veggies (and meat) to spruce it up. you can do a pilaf, with various veggies. you can use curry powder for an indian flavor. you can do brown/wild rice mixes that have more flavor on their own. you can do fried rice with leftover white rice (egg, pre-cooked meat, soy sauce, whatever veggies you like). you might try searching online recipes sites for more ideas... I've got a whole cookbook that's nothing but rice recipes! ;-)

for pasta, I tend to use Tinkyada's, like everyone else, but Ancient Harvest's quinoa pasta is also good. If nothing else, you can definitely get thai rice noodles at almost every supermarket. (And they're perfect for pad thai - and Thai Kitchen's pad thai sauce is gluten-free, as is much of their product line.) and once you find a store that has the supplies you need, you can get noodles, shells, spirals, elbows, and lasagna sheets too. then there's nothing you can't make! (of course, there are some gluten-free pasta sauces, but I find making my own to work best since they can be so versatile - though I often do stick to the meat and tomato based sauces - and they only take about 20 minutes to make from uncooked ground turkey and tomato cans to finished sauce.)

as for salads - don't forget that salads don't have to have nothing but veggies. add meat (works great in a bean salad!), add nuts or avocado, do totally different dressings and different qualities of vegetables. use rice, use rice noodles, use potatoes, canned tuna, fruits, anything. (I'll bet two thirds of my salads don't have lettuce - I just mean "salad" in the 'conglomerate of small pieces of stuff' sense.) you might also try looking through cookbooks for various types of salads that are different from what you might be used to. (I've got a vegetarian cookbook that has some salads I hadn't seen (and I've done a lot of cooking!) until I got it.)

as for baked goods, once you get some gluten-free cookbooks, and find a source for gluten free baking mixes or your own gluten free flours, you'll be able to get back to baking. no, it's not entirely the same, but you can still make tasty things - including banana bread and cookies and blueberry muffins. it will just take some time and practice. please be patient with yourself, and your family, as you make this adjustment. you know now that you really do have to, and it can be tough at first, so you just have to set a goal - like getting through two months, or figuring out how to make good blueberry muffins, or something like that to work towards.

I hope some of these ideas (though I know some are just repeats of what other people have posted) help, but do write back with other things that you're having trouble with in the kitchen!
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Tiffany aka "Have I Mentioned Chocolate Lately?"
Inconclusive Blood Tests, Positive Dietary Results, No Endoscopy
G.F. - September 2003; C.F. - July 2004
Hiker, Yoga Teacher, Engineer, Painter, Be-er of Me
Bellevue, WA

#12 terri

 
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Posted 24 August 2004 - 04:53 AM

Pace mild enchilada sauce is gluten free. The recipe on the back is simple and very tasty! Buy mission corn tortillas. I agree that you should just cook gluten-free for everyone. I do and have never had a complaint yet!
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Terri
Northern Virginia

gluten-free since March 27, 2004

#13 sunflower

 
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Posted 24 August 2004 - 06:21 AM

Charlotte,

I agree with everything above. Your health is most important and you cannot risk it for the short-term benefit of others. After all, it's you who do the cooking, so it's you who decide about ingredients. You should not feel guilty about it, because it's not your fault that you have celiac disease!

On top of everything that was said above, I can tell you that I am gluten-free from the time I was born and I have a few years younger sister who is also gluten-free. My mom told me once that when I was very small, she used to cook ALL dishes separate for me (gluten-free) and for herself and my father (non gluten-free). Then my sister was born and she had to do 3 separate kinds of food: gluten-free, non-gluten-free and baby food. At this point she said stop! She knew she'll go insane if she continues like this, so she decided that she doesn't mind eating gluten-free, and as for my father, either he gets used to eating gluten-free, or he can go and eat out. This way MOST of dishes cooked at my home became gluten-free, with the exception of bread, pasta, and pancakes. Even cake was gluten-free for everyone, and if larger amount was necessary, non-gluten-free one was bought. This worked perfectly well and I don't remember anybody complaining. Sauces for everyone were thickened with gluten-free flour, soups were not thickened at all, etc.

I live now with my fiance (non-gluten-free) and we stick to this pattern with no problems. When I make pasta, I make gluten-free sauce from scratch in one pan, then I use 2 separate small pots for cooking gluten-free and non-gluten-free pasta (being careful to stir with different spoons etc.) and then I put each one's pasta to a separate plate and pour the sauce over. A bit complicated (considering there is just 2 of us), but doable. Then we only have to be careful about washing up separately.

As for pancakes, this is about the one and only dish I cannot make, hate to make and refuse to make especially that my fiance is soo good at making it! :D So this time it's him who has to worry about making 2 separate kinds of pancakes in 2 separate mixing bowls and frying them separately, etc.

Sandwiches for breakfast can be easily made in 2 versions: on gluten-free and non-gluten-free bread. For a big family like yours, you can make it even easier by putting a separate big plate with gluten-free bread, another one with non-gluten-free bread (both kinds possibly firstly spread with butter, or serve 2 separate butter dishes and knives for gluten-free and non-gluten-free), and all the stuff to put on bread (I personally love many kinds of veggies, like tomatoes, radishes etc, sliced) separately, so that everyone can choose whatever they like and put on their bread themselves. Although, this option would probably require a dishwasher or making other members of the family wash up (after all, why not? ;) ).

I've decided that the only way of survival in a mixed (gluten-free/non-gluten-free) household is to learn the art of making simple dishes that everyone can have, preferably with lots of fresh veggies and herbs and spices for the taste - and it does taste better than using the instant sauces / mixes that you can buy at regular shops! I skip any recipes that require long and complicated cooking, as I also work full time. My recent greatest discovery is Greek cuisine - they have many dishes that are easy to make, and many of them can easily be prepared gluten-free. You can search the Web for recipes you like and save them to a separate folder, to use whenever you have no idea what to cook for dinner :) I also do the planning of meals for one week ahead, to be able to go to a supermarket just once a week and save time for shopping. I think the planning part is the hardest, once you decide and write it down it's easy.

BTW, guys, thanks for the Mexican spices recipes - this was something I was just trying recently to figure out after I learned that the regular mixes you can buy have doubtful ingredients! :) I'm so happy I found it here!

Thanks again,

Anna
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#14 sunflower

 
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Posted 24 August 2004 - 07:06 AM

An afterthought - I don't think that you deprive your family of anything by starting to cook from scratch and stopping to use many processed food seasonings/sauces. Firstly, fresh ingredients taste a lot better. Secondly, they are a whole lot healthier. (if you want some scary reading, try this site: http://www.foodag.com/en/ It lists many possible side effects of all the "E" stuff that is added to processed food. To be honest, I never investigated this matter until I recently learned about possibility of hidden ingredients in spice mixes.
I think that your family can only benefit from eating less of food additives, no matter if they have celiac disease or not.

Take care!

Anna
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#15 GEF

 
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Posted 24 August 2004 - 07:14 AM

(if you want some scary reading, try this site: http://www.foodag.com/en/ It lists many possible side effects of all the "E" stuff that is added to processed food. To be honest, I never investigated this matter until I recently learned about possibility of hidden ingredients in spice mixes.

Anna,

Thanks for the site info! Whoa on the "E" stuff! When I have a few minutes, I really need to read all of that!

Gretchen
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