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Member Since 21 Sep 2010
Offline Last Active Mar 26 2011 08:12 AM

Topics I've Started

Blender Advice

13 March 2011 - 03:07 PM

I want to buy a blender or food processor. I think at this point I want a blender. I want to make things like tabbouleh, hummus, guacamole, etc. I want to be able to blend items together.

Every blender I look at online has zillions of negative reviews and I'm starting to just get confused. What blenders do you guys have that are dependable and will blend, chop, and just plain be awesome?

Any insight is appreciated.


10 March 2011 - 07:30 PM

I am dealing with a sick kitty over here, and part of his therapy is giving him Petromalt to help him pass a hairball. Imagine my surprise when I looked at the tube and saw that the #1 inactive ingredient is BARLEY MALT SYRUP.

Please be careful and wash your hands thoroughly if you have cats and Celiac and use this product.

Ore Ida

20 February 2011 - 05:15 AM

Ore Ida has a gluten-free product list that is very long. I decided to try these tasty products, and after some careful testing I'm pretty sure the product list is both long and inaccurate. With the current severity of my symptoms I'm thinking it's more of a minor ingredient issue, maybe even cross-contamination due to same machinery or something similar. My guts definitely do NOT think Ore Ida is gluten-free, though. I am definitely responding to something.

The products I have tried and had trouble with: tater tots, zesty fries, fast food-style fries (the super skinny, crunchy ones).


04 February 2011 - 02:13 PM

Here's the thing. My school has a fancy dance with a catered dinner once a year. I contacted the organizers to ask for the caterer's contact info so that I could request a gluten- and dairy-free meal. The organizers did not give me the caterer's info but said there was another Celiac guest who was getting a gluten-free dinner, and the caterer had already said it'd be no problem to accommodate special dietary needs.

So now the caterer is going to make me a gluten- and dairy-free meal. Supposedly. I have no idea how much to trust this person with whom I've never spoken, knowing that I'm going through at least two intermediaries.

My symptoms usually start about 30 minutes after eating, so I could potentially eat a couple bites of my food and then wait and see if I feel abnormally full or get stomach pains. If I only eat a couple bites I'll have some symptoms for a week but not much pain. If I eat the full plate and it's contaminated with only a shared pan, I'll get stomach pain but symptoms for only a couple hours. If I eat the full plate and it's badly contaminated, I will be MISERABLE for some hours that night and then have continued symptoms for a week, maybe longer.

So here I stand with a dilemma! I guess it's only a dilemma because I feel bad for the chef having gone out of his way (maybe) to make my food and I hate to waste food. But I also hate to get sick.

I think right now I'm leaning toward being happier to stay safe and not sick and not in pain and not having symptoms. Please share your wisdom!

Las Vegas Experience

28 November 2010 - 07:21 AM

My (brand-new) husband and I just spent almost a week in Las Vegas. I wanted to give you a heads-up about successes and problems I faced while being gluten-free, casein-free in Las Vegas without the benefit of my own kitchen or cookware.

We stayed in Luxor. I do not recommend that anyone else who is gluten-free do that, and we won't do it again. The kitchens in the Pyramid Cafe, which is the Luxor restaurant (and the same kitchen that does room service) uses only non-stick pans and seems incapable of understanding that this could be a problem. We walked in, realized the problem, and never ate there. But this made breakfast more inconvenient. I wouldn't trust the buffet in either Luxor or Excalibur (owned by the same company) because even after multiple attempts, we were unable to get someone on the phone to speak with us - even with the help of the concierge. With customer service like that, I just don't trust them.

BUT that was the only really bad experience we had. My breakfasts were Lara bars and Trio bars, with some gluten-free/CF potato chips and popcorn tossed in (I'll eat ANYTHING when I'm hungry enough). We basically went for one meal a day in a restaurant, and my husband went for breakfast (fast food) by himself in the mornings.

Our successful restaurants:

Delmonico in the Venetian - I explained my dietary restrictions and the manager came out to speak with me, double-checked everything I was eating, modified menu items, and acted like it was totally normal. Expensive, but AMAZING food.

Rainforest Cafe in the MGM Grand - already known by this forum as a Celiac-friendly restaurant, their gluten-free menu contains lots of casein-filled items and they are inflexible with their garlic mashed potatoes (wouldn't let me substitute them out for something I could eat, so they went to my husband the whole time). I had the Maya Mahi with roasted veggies one time and the steak with chicken and grilled shrimp, adding roasted veggies on the side. Moderately priced, especially for Vegas casino restaurants.

Harrah's buffet (called Flavor) - EXCELLENT SERVICE. The head chef came out and walked me through the whole buffet, specifying which items were safe and which weren't and why. There were lots of options, but I mostly ended up eating crab legs and shrimp because I had a craving. This was how we spent Thanksgiving.

Sushi Roku at Caesar's Palace - Wonderful experience, but it's really the best if you like sushi or sashimi because most other dishes contain some soy sauce or soy marinade and are unsafe. When it comes to their sushi, only the eel is unsafe (it's marinated in soy). They have tamari (gluten-free soy sauce) to bring to your table on request, and I was able to eat normally. I double-checked their wasabi and sushi rice in advance, and they do not add flour to the rolls or rice and their wasabi is gluten-free. Tasty food and reasonably priced for a Japanese restaurant in a casino (read: more expensive than in a normal place, but not crazy). I had the chef's special sushi combo, which had no eel in it.

Eiffel Tower Restaurant at the Paris - This was probably the single most amazing experience I had because the chef said he would make anything I wanted from the menu because they're a scratch kitchen and he would modify as required. We were celebrating our 3-day anniversary and they actually took my wine off the bill, too. They definitely bought my loyalty. I ended up having duck with mustard greens and lentils, and it was amazing. We ran into the man who oversees the whole restaurant accidentally on the way out and were able to raise a bit of Celiac awareness with him, too. So that was a double-win.

Burger Bar in Mandalay Bay - They use a grill so this is probably not the safest for the super-sensitive, but I did fine with a normal burger ordered without the bun. I just got a buffalo burger with extra lettuce and grilled onions and portobello mushrooms and it was delicious. I made sure to not get french fries because I noticed they also make onion rings and other breaded items. My buffalo burger was wonderful, and this was quite reasonably priced.

I hope this was helpful! Next time we'll call ahead before booking to be able to stay at a Celiac-friendly place, but otherwise it was quite a success!

Let me know if there are any other questions I can answer for anybody about the trip. I managed to avoid being glutened at all. I'm not the most sensitive Celiac in the world, but I do get symptoms when I get glutened, so I am a semi-reliable glutenometer. ;-)


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