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Holiday Successes And Failures
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Those of you that had to deal with the annual figuring out how you're going to handle food for Christmas/Hannukah/Solstice/etc, how did it go this year?

My family is awesome. They were very careful with the food this year. Wasn't a gourmet masterpiece, but it was certainly adequate to celebrate. At the actual meal, the subject of what I can/can't eat was only brought up once, but then quickly dropped.

I did have one break down in the afternoon for a couple hours that was either from not eating enough/soon enough OR possibly a little CC off of a gluteny kid. Not sure about that one.

How 'bout you??

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We had a quiet day at home. I ate leftover stir fry for breakfast and I made the husband and boys waffles and sausage. We ate late and snacked all day so we really didn't have lunch. For supper we had fried shrimp, baked potato and steamed whole green beens.

I made a second meal to bring to work and share with a coworker since it is Christmas. I tried out my new pressure cooker and made a chuck roast in it.I had sides of mashed potatoes/gravy and steamed carrots. I made fruit dip to go with strawberries and apples my coworker brought. She was tickled pink. I offered some to the ER crew I work with, but no takers. Oh well, that just means I don't have to cook supper tonight! They don't know what they are missing. I think this is the best gravy I've made yet. :P

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We've been doing holidays gluten free for years now, even though I'm the only one who needs it. It's really quite easy to find naturally gluten free things to eat! Christmas dinner this year was king salmon (grilled, seasoned with herbs), sweet potato fries with cinnamon, saluted green beans, broccoli with ginger/tamari/sesame oil/rice wine, rice, and a green salad with pomegranate seeds. Dessert was angel food cake (homemade, gluten free - tastes just like a regular one) with boysenberry compote. Not a huge ordeal, though certainly more work than every day dinner. ;)

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This was my first gluten-free Christmas which we spent at home by ourselves. I experimented by using gluten-free buckwheat flour in my pie crust which turned out real well. Husband made a stuffing out of cornbread I made earlier in th week that turned out really nice. I used cornstarch to thicken the scalloped potatoes which were awesome! Could not tell it was a gluten-free meal, it was delicious!

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I had a fabulous day. I made a turkey stuffed with cornbread stuffing, it had cherries, apples, raisins,cranberries, onions, celery, sausage and walnuts in it. The turkey was so tender and juicy, even the breast meat was unbelievable. My In-Laws gorged and stuffed themselves. My Father in law ate 5 plates of food. I got big hugs from everyone for the good food. Besides the turkey, I made mashed potatoes, peas, cranberry sauce, candied sweet potatoes and gravy. nobody missed wheat and gluten, the meal was great without it. I am the only one who has to be gluten free, but they were all happy with my food. This is my second holiday season gluten free. This year I am so much more comfortable in the kitchen and I can cook gluten free with no problem. :D

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I had a great past couple of days. There was only one incident where we thought something would be safe, but found out it wasn't, so I just didn't have a sandwich one night, but it was no big deal! I just had extra chili. :)

I have made the discovery this holiday season to not call things "gluten-free." Instead, I call them "homemade."

I made homemade cinnamon rolls on Christmas Eve for us to bake and eat on Christmas morning. If anyone thought gluten-free sounded bad, my gluten-eating children would have been glad to have their portion. :)

Christmas2011381-1.jpg

I also made homemade Peppermint Bark and homemade double-chocolate toffee. It's actually funny how you can call something "gluten-free" that is already usually gluten-free anyways and people will avoid it. My husband found this out and, since he loved the toffee, would tell people it was "gluten-free toffee" at the family gathering, hoping they would avoid it so we'd have lots of leftovers to take home. :)

Christmas2011077-1.jpg

I made homemade Peppermint Patties that were probably my biggest hit! Everyone kept asking me for the recipe (they taste just like - or even better than - York Peppermint Patties) and only a half-bitten one was left by the end of the night.

Christmas2011078-1.jpg

Finally, I made a homemade Yule Log with homemade meringue mushrooms. I've never made one before and was surprised by how easy everything was. The butter-cream filling wrapped up in the chocolate sponge cake was great! I'm not an artist with cake icing by any stretch of the imagination, but it tasted good!

Christmas2011135-1.jpg

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Katrala, your foods look absolutely delicious!!

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Hi K!

Glad to hear you are doing well! :)

This was my first Christmas totally gluten-free and post-DX and was able to don my chef's cap again for the first time since taking seriously ill in 2007.

It was miraculous to be able to eat and drink whatever I wanted once again.

To be able to enjoy food again without pain!!

I actually have tears in my eyes as I write this.

Cocktails, shrimp, Filet mignon roast with port mushroom sauce, whipped potatoes, asparagus, cheesecake, muffins, mince pie...I made them all, adapting my favorite recipes to gluten-free. It was the most food I have eaten in YEARS. It was pure joy!

I am full, content, happy and beyond grateful for a husband who stood by me when things went so awry and we made quite merry. I may not be "there" yet, but I am on the way. Life is good!

I hope all of you continue to get well and enjoy a Happy and HEALTHY New Year.

All the best,

IH

P.S. AVR started a similar thread yesterday and some people chimed in on there, if you want to see more successes! :)

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I have made the discovery this holiday season to not call things "gluten-free." Instead, I call them "homemade."

That's what I do, too! I just say homemade! No one cares what's in it. It tastes yummy, that's all that matters.

Hon, your goodies look AMAZING!! Kuddos to you!! :) That toffee looks so good!

(I thought my mince pie, pumpkin muffins and cheescake looked fab) :lol:

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I did bad on Christmas eve and Christmas. Not a lot but enough to be considered bad. Paid for it Sunday. Ironically I was perfect over Thanksgiving and felt worse; however, i think the issue there was that i did not avoid dairy.

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I had ham, scalloped potatoes (crockpot), green beans with almonds, broccoli, a relish plate (olives, raw veggies, etc.), cranberry sauce for my two must-have-cranberries-at-every-holiday-meal people, brownies with chocolate chips in them and with chocolate frosting, apple pie, and cherry pie. Every single thing was gluten free and they didn't even know it! woot! lol... I made the pie crust myself (used canned pie filling because I am NOT a cook). I let them start eating their pieces before I took some for myself. heehee...

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I was lucky enough to be invited to a home where the people are understanding and they truly care. When Wendy asked me what she could cook special for me, I told her that I didn't want to insult her, but it would be easier to just bring my own. So I brought a plate with roast chicken, baked potato and broccoli. I even brought my own silverware, glass, and bottled water. Wendy had heard all about how I got sick one night from drinking a glass of iced tea at a local pizza joint from some flour dust that must have found its way into my glass. She heard about the time the plastic bottle got me when I picked up a bottle of water at the convienience store - it was made with that new corn based plastic. So it was no problem at all.

Every year, I bring the dinner rolls and pies. The local bakery makes WONDERFUL blueberry and apple pies. I had planned to bring ice cream for dessert for myself but never made it to the store in time. That was OK. We were all too full for dessert anyway.

And afterward we had a jam session. It doesn't get any better than that.

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The meal at my twin bro's house went well. We had ham, scalloped potatoes (my SIL just uses potatoes, bacon and cheese), and green beans. They also had gluten-y rolls, that I avoided. My SIL and other family members are used to me avoiding both wheat and corn syrup, so she had some 'naked' green beans in a separate corning ware container for me before she put mushroom soup on the rest of them. Though I discovered Red Bridge beer has corn syrup, ugh! My niece's husband saw that on the label which I didn't even look for... Oh well, corn doesn't seem to be as big an issue for me since I've been gluten-free.

A little while after dinner we had the Betty Crocker gluten-free yellow cake w/ chocolate frosting I brought, and it was the first time I've made that cake. It was a bit dry, I'll have to work on that for future use. But everyone really liked the frosting -- which was just powdered sugar and the butter cream recipe with powdered cocoa, from the recipe on the bag of powdered sugar (using cream instead of milk), and I had to add a couple of extra tablespoons of butter because it was too stiff.

And all of the homemade goodies in the thread looked really delicious!

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It sounds like most folks had a pretty good holiday. Those pictures of that food look wonderful. Especially the peppermint patties.

I made a roast with potatoes and veggies yesterday. Unfortunately I over cooked it cause I got involved on the phone with my kids. If they were here they would have said I always overcook beef though. I finished dinner off with chocolates and anise pizelles. My favorite cookie. Since my kids weren't able to make it home this year I really relaxed this Christmas. Usually I wear myself out trying to make everything perfect for everyone but this year I didn't even do any extra vacuuming. :ph34r: I got to ignore the dust bunnies and just sit and enjoy watching Harry Potter between phone calls to and from loved ones and watch my fur family chase around the light from the mouse laser pointer I got for them.

Today's dinner with the leftovers was great though. I took that overcooked beef and cut it up and boiled it in some broth. When it was so tender it fell apart I added potatoes and some other veggies. After everything was cooked I drained and stirred in some Pacific Beef Gravy and ate a couple huge bowls. Tommorrow it will reappear again in a crust with mashed potatoes on top. I see raspberry thumbprint cookies in the near future also since I found a new cookie mix at Wegmans today.

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday and a happy and healthy new year.

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so she had some 'naked' green beans in a separate corning ware container for me before she put mushroom soup on the rest of them.

My mom's family does "little" things like this and it makes me realize how awesome they are - to remember something like this and set aside a dish for me so I will have everything possible to eat.

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My mom's family does "little" things like this and it makes me realize how awesome they are - to remember something like this and set aside a dish for me so I will have everything possible to eat.

Indeed, it's pretty awesome. I think I said thanks 2 or 3 times. :) My brother makes snide remarks now & then (like 'pretty soon you'll only be able to eat tree bark!'), so it's great his wife is good about it, since she's doing most of the cooking!

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We had a good christmas. I made honey glazed ham, mashed potatoes, green beans, and deviled eggs.

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Katrala your treats look amazing. You went all out!

This Christmas was the first time we've stayed home in years. Our house is too small to host many people but my mom, stepdad, and brother came over and we had lunch together. I made my (grain free nut free dairy free gaps legal) chestnut stuffing and this time it turned out great! The recipe and a photo of our dinner is on the blog linked from my profile on the "chestnut stuffing" post. It was really nice not to have to be paranoid about getting my kids served first and protecting their plates and whatnot! As a Christmas treat Santa gave the kids a maple candy in their stockings. (Maple is not gaps legal and we normally have fruit or just a bit of honey in sweets) my son was in absolute heaven over it. For thanksgiving we brought all our own food to dinner and it went fine but was a lot of work. I have a post with pictures from it on the blog entry called "the holidays."

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Hi, don't want to bring anyone down, it sounds like you all had a wonderful and safe christmas but I had a Major Fail! It was the first time in years that I did not have to work and was able to visit family (as well as my first gluten-free christmas). Well I put too much faith in them. I don't want to go into the details but needless to say that even though my better half was trying to look out for me at his family's get together, it didn't really work as planned-cross contamination everywhere. At my family's Christmas dinner, I assumed they would be very careful but didn't realize that they really don't have a clue, I think everything had gluten in some form or another! my step mother did make the effort to use cornstarch to thicken the gravy-kudos for that! but long story short I definitely got glutened and am paying the price. :blink: I don't know why I took the chance-I guess I gave them more credit than I should have! I'm kinda kicking myself for not being prepared with my own alternatives, it's just with my work schedule, budget and lack of time leading up to the holiday I really dropped the ball!

All I have to say is I am glad that my son and better half are away this week, if they were here they would be crop-dusted like crazy :P

At least I have the house to myself and can recover in peace with out any comments! ;)

Live and Learn!

At least I know I'll have a safe(gluten-free)NYE!

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Hi, don't want to bring anyone down, it sounds like you all had a wonderful and safe christmas but I had a Major Fail! It was the first time in years that I did not have to work and was able to visit family (as well as my first gluten-free christmas). Well I put too much faith in them. I don't want to go into the details but needless to say that even though my better half was trying to look out for me at his family's get together, it didn't really work as planned-cross contamination everywhere. At my family's Christmas dinner, I assumed they would be very careful but didn't realize that they really don't have a clue, I think everything had gluten in some form or another! my step mother did make the effort to use cornstarch to thicken the gravy-kudos for that! but long story short I definitely got glutened and am paying the price. :blink: I don't know why I took the chance-I guess I gave them more credit than I should have! I'm kinda kicking myself for not being prepared with my own alternatives, it's just with my work schedule, budget and lack of time leading up to the holiday I really dropped the ball!

All I have to say is I am glad that my son and better half are away this week, if they were here they would be crop-dusted like crazy :P

At least I have the house to myself and can recover in peace with out any comments! ;)

Live and Learn!

At least I know I'll have a safe(gluten-free)NYE!

((HUGS)) sorry hon!! yes, unfortunately, we do keep learning THE HARD WAY sometimes (I had a CC issue a few weeks ago when I trusted a "flourless cake" that was supposed to be gluten-free...um, nope! :(

Hope it passes quickly and that your New Year is happy!!

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Thanks IrishHeart! I hope you have a Happy New Year also!

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Christmas dinner was at my house. I'm the only one that needs to eat gluten free, but there were certainly no complaints about the food. Roast lamb with roasted potatoes, vegetables, salad and a homemade flourless chocolate cake. My family has been very supportive about that changes I've made in my diet, so I am really thankful for that.

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My family was so amazing about making everything gluten free. They washed everything down, used separate cloths for anything floury etc. I feel so blessed to be so well taken care of.

Unfortunately, I accidentally drank out of the wrong cup on Friday and it turned out my sister had eaten a sandwich while she drank out of that cup....so I spent Christmas Eve in serious pain. It built during the day and by the time we got to the sitdown prime rib dinner I couldn't eat. :( Oh well! I learned my lesson about grabbing a drink off the counter and not making sure it's mine!

Sounds like a bunch of people had great success though! Good times!

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Okay, all this gluten-free make-it-yourself stuff can go a bit far. I went to make the apricot glaze for my ham, and discovered that hub had scarfed all the apricot preserves. Thinking cap??? Hmmm, got dried apricots.... no, wait, even though I could soak them in the sherry, too long...got canned apricots. One hamload of apricot preserves coming up - along with some dry sherry, cinnamon, brown sugar, bit of grainy mustard, etc., and perfecto. :D Gluten free does teach you to improvise.

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I am happy with my first gluten-free Christmas efforts -- turkey, stuffing (finally found a way to use up that Ener-G bread I bought when first diagnosed and didn't know better!), veggies, mashed potatoes and gravy, and cornbread. Only the dessert was store-bought and gluten-filled for my husband and daughter; I had made gluten-free brownies but was full of all the other food so didn't even have one!

I do have to say I ate more replacement foods than I have in one sitting since diagnosis and my system was a little wonky yesterday but it wasn't from being glutened! Yay! Plus my husband and daughter both admitted that if they didn't know better they'd think it was a 'normal' Christmas dinner. Success!

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