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Butternut Squash Lasagna (Gluten-Free)


Butternut Squash Lasagna (photo courtesy of signal the police)

The following recipe is not your average lasagna recipe, but it is gluten-free, vegan, corn-free, sugar-free, soy-free and has the option to be nut-free if you use rice milk or hemp milk instead of almond milk. This is a recipe that can accommodate many dietary restrictions and is a healthy alternative to the standard cheese and meat lasagna. Please be sure that your spices are all gluten-free.

Ingredients:

Butternut Filling

  • 6 cups cubed butternut squash roasted in the oven with a dash of olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • ½  tsp pepper
  • ½  tsp ground sage (optional)
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 Tbsp almond milk -add more if too thick
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
To Make Butternut Filling:
Roast your butternut in the oven at about 400 degrees until soft, approximately 20 minutes. Once it is done, add all of the butternut filling ingredients into your food processor and blend until smooth and creamy (but not too watery). Add more almond milk or olive oil,  for texture if needed. Remove from the food processor and set aside while you make your creamy filling.

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Bechamel (creamy) filling

  • 1 cup pine nuts *soaked for a few hours
  • 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup almond milk (or milk alternative of your choice)
  • ½  cup sweet rice flour
  • ½  tsp pepper
  • 2/3 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
*For details on how to properly soak your pine nuts, go here
Soaking Nuts
Drain your soaked pine nuts and add them to your (clean) food processor along with the nutritional yeast and lemon juice.  Blend until smooth but not runny.

In a small pot on the stove, heat your olive oil over medium-low heat and slowly add the sweet rice flour mixing it with the oil but not allowing it to burn. Stir for a few seconds and then add the almond milk slowly, stirring continuously (a wire whisk works well here). Add the rest of the seasoning and cook for a minute or so to get rid of the floury taste. Add the flour mix to the pine nut mixture in the food processor a little at a time, mixing in between additions. Once it is well blended, taste the seasoning- does it need more of anything? Also, is it too thick? If so, add more almond milk or olive oil.

Assembly:
Start  with a light layer of the bechamel, followed by a noodle layer, butternut layer topped with bechamel, noodle, and then butternut topped with bechamel. Sprinkle some more dried basil and oregano on top as well-to taste. I sprinkled some Daiya chedder vegan, soy-free cheese on top-it was delicious!

Bake uncovered in the oven at 350F degrees until bubbly - approximately 30 minutes.

Enjoy!

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Similarly, I've been vegetarian for 25+ years. A 2015 Nature study connecting emulsifiers with microbiome changes has me wondering about the processed foods that I ate in the past, and I wonder about the wisdom of eating as much seitan as I did. I mostly prefer my post-diagnosis diet since it forces me to consider every ingredient and to cook from scratch more.

LOL, that might put it into perspective if I explain it that way.

I am very interested in this too. My daughter tested negative for celiac, but has terrible primarily neurological symptoms. Because she tested positive for SIBO at the time and was having some GI symptoms, I was told it was just a Fodmap issue. I knew better and we have been gluten free for 2 years. Fast forward to this February. She had a SIBO recurrence that I treated at home with diet and herbal antibiotics because I couldn't get the insurance referral. She was doing great. Then stupid me brought in gluten containing chick feed for the new baby chicks we got. Feed dust everywhere. Total mess. Really, no GI symptoms (she was SIBO free by then)...but the neurological symptoms! my daughter couldn't walk for three days. Burning down one leg, nerve pain in the foot. Also heaviness of limbs, headache and fatigue. Better after three days. But unfortunately she had a TINY gluten exposure at that three day mark and had another severe reaction: loss of balance, loss of feeling in her back and arms, couldn't see for a few seconds, and three days of hand numbness, fatigue, concentration problems. Well, I actually contacted Dr. Hadjivassilou by email and he confirmed that the symptoms are consistent with gluten ataxia but any testing would require a gluten challenge. Even with these exposures, antibodies would not be high enough. His suggestion was maintain vigilance gluten free. I just saw my daughter's GI at U of C and she really only recognizes celiac disease and neurological complications of that. But my impression is that gluten ataxia is another branch in the autoimmune side of things (with celiac and DH being the other two). At this point, I know a diagnosis is important. But I don't know how to get there. We homeschool right now so I can give her time to heal when she is accidentally glutened, I can keep my home safe for her (ugh, that I didn't think of the chicken feed!) But at some point, she is going to be in college, needing to take exams, and totally incapacitated because of an exposure. And doctors state side that are worth seeing? Who is looking at gluten ataxia in the US?

Caro..............monitoring only the TSH to gauge thyroid function is what endo's do who don' t do a good job of managing thyroid disease. They should do the full panel and check the actual thyroid hormone numbers.........T3 and T4. The importance of the TSH comes second to hormone levels. In order to track how severely the thyroid is under attack, you need to track antibody levels.......not the TSH. I did not stay with endocrinologists because I found they did not do a very good job and found much greater help and results with a functional medicine MD. You should not have a goiter if your thyroid is functioning well and your TSH is "normal". Maybe they should do a full panel? Going gluten free can have a profound affect for the better on thyroid function and that is something that is becoming more and more accepted today. Ask most people with Celiac and thyroid disease and they will tell you that. My thyroid never functioned well or was under control under after I discovered I had Celiac and went gluten free. It was the only way I got my antibody numbers back down close to normal and they were around 1200 when it was diagnosed with Celiac. I was diagnosed with Hashi's long before the Celiac diagnosis. I am not sure Vitamin D has anything to do with thyroid antibodies but who knows? Maybe it does have an affect for the better. It is really hard to get Vitmain D levels up, depending on where you live. Mine are going up, slowly, even after 12 years gluten-free but I live in the Northeast in the US and we don't have sun levels like they do in the South. I take 5,000 IU daily and that is a safe level to take, believe it or not. I get no sun on my job so the large dose it is! Having Celiac Disease should not stop you from being able to travel, especially S. America. I travel, although I do agree that some countries might be very difficult to be gluten free in. You can be a foodie and travel with Celiac so no worries on that front. You may not be able to sample from someone else's plate, unless they are eating gluten-free too but I have had awesome experiences with food when traveling so you can too!

I don't know what you drank or where.... so here are a few thoughts. - sure, a dive bar might have dirty glasses and serve a cocktail in a beer glass? But a nice reminder place, with a dishwasher, should be fine. If it's a sketchy place, Stick to wine, then it's served in wine glasses that aren't used for beer or bottled ciders in the bottle. - ciders on tap might, just a slight chance, have an issue. Because of beer on tap, mixed up lines, etc. - you may have a problem with alcohol - you may have issues with The high sugar content of the drink. I know I have similar issues if I drink serveral ciders of extra sugary brands - are you positive it was a gluten-free drink? Not this " redds Apple" pretending to be a cider - it's beer with apple flavor. Or one of those " gluten removed " beers?