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Nuala

How Can The Cook Not Taste Her Own Food While Cooking On Thanksgiving?

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I have ony been gluten-free for a few weeks. I realized at some point after I started the gluten-free diet, that I should not taste my non gluten-free dishes I make for other members of the family. This has not really been a problem so far. However, I am the cook on Thanksgiving, and I just can't figure out how I can cook properly without tasting the dishes I am making.

I could ask otheres in the household, but they really don't have a good sense for flavor and seaonsing etc. So, I am worrying about serving things I have not tasted and seasoned etc properly. :( I was/am a really good cook.

Any solutions?

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ANYTHING you can think of to make on Thanksgiving can be easily made gluten-free--and nobody will be able to tell the difference.

Tell us what you are planning on making, and we'll tell you how to make it gluten-free! Then you not only get to taste it, you get to EAT it!

Even the traditional green-bean casserole (a Thanksgiving MUST at our house) is easy to alter. And stuffing is a no-brainer--simply make cornbread (not from a mix--use a gluten-free recipe, there are many and they take maybe 3 minutes longer than using a mix), let it cool, cut it into cubes, and toast in the oven for 15 minutes and you've got stuffing cubes! Or you can make a quick-bread--we usually make pumpkin bread, and I just substitute gluten-free flour (about 25-30% less than the amount called for in the recipe), add a teaspoon of xanthan gum (if it's not already in the mix), and dry out the same way (if you don't scarf it down first--better make 2 or 3 loaves :) ) I'm not kidding--NOBODY can tell the difference.

You might even try googling the name of your recipe along with the words gluten-free and I bet somebody's already figured out the recipe and posted it.

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Well, as far as I am concerned, that is rather simple. Do what I did and cook the whole meal gluten-free! That way you won't gluten yourself while cooking, and get to eat everything yourself as well.

I am the only one gluten-free in this household (plus my granddaughter is, who was here on Thanksgiving). But everybody loved the food!

We made stuffing with gluten-free bread and thickened the gravy with light buckwheat flour. Nobody would ever know the difference.

You can easily make gluten-free pies, too. Seriously, if you do it right, everybody will rave about the food and won't even know it is gluten-free unless you tell them.

When I wanted some stuffing the next day, I was out of luck, because somebody had sneaked it out of the fridge and ate it (and I guarantee you, it wasn't somebody who has celiac disease).

My meal was a great success, and I was perfectly safe to eat it. And for the most part, I didn't even cook it, my kids and their spouses did. And they didn't mind cooking gluten-free at all. Not that they had a choice, since I refuse to have regular flour in this house anyway!

In case you wonder about me having had Thanksgiving already, I am in Canada.


I am a German citizen, married to a Canadian 29 years, four daughters, one son, seven granddaughters and four grandsons, with one more grandchild on the way in July 2009.

Intolerant to all lectins (including gluten), nightshades (potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant) and salicylates.

Asperger Syndrome, Tourette Syndrome, Addison's disease (adrenal insufficiency), hypothyroidism, fatigue syndrome, asthma

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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I really don't believe that on Thanksgiving you should be cooking for people when you can't eat the food. If you are the cook, make it gluten free! If someone else is cooking then you should probably bring things that you can't eat because it can cause a lot of controversy to try and make everyone around you change. (Celiac Disease is very hard for the people around you to understand, especially if you are new to it also. I am 3 months in and still convincing some people it is real.

This year I decided to opt out traveling for the huge family meal and I invited any of my family who wanted to come to my house and we will be having a great gluten free meal. So my parents and siblings are going to eat with the extended family on Thursday and then travel up to have a meal with my boyfriend and I because I just knew my first Thanksgiving would be too hard to cope with at this point.

So I say make it gluten free or make someone else make it ;) Best of luck with your decision though!


10-06 Diagnosed Urinary Tract Infection (Allergic to Cipro, Bactrim, Macrobid, Doxycycline, Monocycline, Penicillin) - This UTI is still present with no symptoms.

10-06 Diagnosed "Acid Reflux" (Nexium didn't work)

12-06 Endoscopy diagnosed Gastritis (Negative Bioposy)

12-06 Negative bloodwork for Celiac Disease, Diagnosed "Gastroparesis" - Started Zelnorm

1-07 Diagnosed "IBS-C" - Still taking Zelnorm

3-07 HIDA scan to check gallbladder which was fully functional.

3-07 Zelnorm taken off market, started Domperidone

4-21-07 Emergency Appendectomy (FUUUNN!)

7-24-07 Enterolab results came back positive

Gluten Free since that night....

...Still not feeling great.

"Don't expect constant success, but strive for constant growth."

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You are STILL a great cook. You've just got to adapt to using some different ingredients.

That, and if they're no good with a sense for flavor and seasoning, they won't really care if you forget the oregano, will they?


If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill

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Thanks for all your very informative suggestions. :) I guess I am worrying too much about the perfection of my food. You are right - I will try to come up with as gluten-free a menu as I can. I guess I am worrried about the "second star" of the dinner - the stuffing - I haven't found a suitable bread I think will be a decent substitute for the traditional white bread cubes, etc. I was also worried about the gravy... as I usually thiken with flour. I will use corn starch instead.

We are big veggie eaters, so that will not be too much of a problem, aside from the creamed onions - but here, I guess I can try a substitue gluten-free flour to thicken the white sauce ....

Unfortunately, I am alone in my gluten-free venture, some support, but not enough to tolerate a gluten-free meal for everyone else... and of course the mother-in-law would not be very amenable. So, I will do as gluten-free as possible, but no announcement. After the trials and tribulations I went through with my thyroid (getting treatment and then finally getting Armour thyroid :) ), I have used up most of my significant other's patience in these matters. I think he is finally convinced that many of my significant symtoms - extreme fatigue, anxiety, depression, brain fog, are connected to the thyroid. Now he really has little patience for the stories of other autoimmune diseases...I am sure some of you know what I am talking about. I feel alot clearer since I went gluten-free - I wish some drs had recognised a connection btwn my low ferritin and b12 despite my very healthy diet.

I was wishing we had a Whole Foods around here. I understand they have a gluten-free bakery in-store. It would make life so much easier for special occasions and the occasional treat!

I know I'll still be a good cook, but I guess I am just still struggling to adjust to the change in ingredients. Thanks for the compliment. :)

:lol:

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Tell your significant other that your thyroid problems are most likely due to the gluten!

The way it works is, the gluten triggers your immune system to attack the thyroid. You will very likely notice that you can decrease your dose of Armour within a couple of months (but don't worry if that doesn't change --as long as you are feeling well, that is the most important thing!).

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Just a few suggestions. Use sweet rice flour to thicken the gravy and white sauce and no one will ever know. It doesn't lump like regular flour, so it's actually easier. For stuffing, try Ener-G Foods Light Tapioca bread. Cut into cubes and dry in the oven. Again, I bet no one will notice. I make stuffing from either the light tapioca or brown rice bread and homemade cornbread and it gets slurped right up. The first time I made it I was kind of nervous and explained to everyone that I made the stuffing gluten-free and I hoped it was okay and my sister told me to quit worrying because it was the best stuffing she had ever had. It's my favorite part of the meal, so it was a big deal for me to find a recipe that everyone likes. You'll be able to adapt your cooking just fine, and you'll enjoy the holiday much more if you can eat everything.

Also - there are a couple other Thanksgiving threads running. You might get some good ideas from those. Just look at the baking and cooking tips section and you'll find them.


Liz

Started Specific Carbohydrate Diet on 8-16-09 because son was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis and want to give him moral support.

Diagnosed with Minimal Change Nephrotic Syndrome in 2003. Discovered that going completely gluten-free put me in remission.

I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Psalms 27:13

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Thanks for all your very informative suggestions. :) I guess I am worrying too much about the perfection of my food. You are right - I will try to come up with as gluten-free a menu as I can. I guess I am worrried about the "second star" of the dinner - the stuffing - I haven't found a suitable bread I think will be a decent substitute for the traditional white bread cubes, etc. I was also worried about the gravy... as I usually thiken with flour. I will use corn starch instead.

We are big veggie eaters, so that will not be too much of a problem, aside from the creamed onions - but here, I guess I can try a substitue gluten-free flour to thicken the white sauce ....

Unfortunately, I am alone in my gluten-free venture, some support, but not enough to tolerate a gluten-free meal for everyone else... and of course the mother-in-law would not be very amenable. So, I will do as gluten-free as possible, but no announcement. After the trials and tribulations I went through with my thyroid (getting treatment and then finally getting Armour thyroid :) ), I have used up most of my significant other's patience in these matters. I think he is finally convinced that many of my significant symtoms - extreme fatigue, anxiety, depression, brain fog, are connected to the thyroid. Now he really has little patience for the stories of other autoimmune diseases...I am sure some of you know what I am talking about. I feel alot clearer since I went gluten-free - I wish some drs had recognised a connection btwn my low ferritin and b12 despite my very healthy diet.

I was wishing we had a Whole Foods around here. I understand they have a gluten-free bakery in-store. It would make life so much easier for special occasions and the occasional treat!

I know I'll still be a good cook, but I guess I am just still struggling to adjust to the change in ingredients. Thanks for the compliment. :)

:lol:

I know where you're at. Unless it's tossing salad, I can't cook without tasting...a touch of something makes all the difference sometimes. I even used to taste bread dough, to check the salt in it before I kneaded it!

Good suggestions, lonewolf!

And since Thanksgiving dinner is such a special occasion, here's something that used to drive me nutso when I was married, because my husband was such a perfectionist he would insist on doing it EVERY time we had people over:

Do dry runs...start about now and test out a non-gluten stuffing by stuffing a chicken with it, like lonewolfs. That way you can taste AND get the hang of the stuffing. :lol: :lol: :lol: How about a row of test cornish hens, one gluten free stuffing recipe per bird? I joke...who has the time...but a dry run some how with a gluten free stuffing might be good

By the way, to gluten-free stuffing people, do your stuffings take more liquid to moisten, if you do that extra pot of stuffing in the oven alongside the turkey?

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By the way, to gluten-free stuffing people, do your stuffings take more liquid to moisten, if you do that extra pot of stuffing in the oven alongside the turkey?

I don't add any extra liquid. I just follow the basic recipe in my cookbook and go by "feel" too. Once the bread is dry, it seems to act just like other dry bread cubes. If you put too much liquid in it gets a little too mushy.


Liz

Started Specific Carbohydrate Diet on 8-16-09 because son was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis and want to give him moral support.

Diagnosed with Minimal Change Nephrotic Syndrome in 2003. Discovered that going completely gluten-free put me in remission.

I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Psalms 27:13

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I had one of my son's (the one that doesn't seem to have a problem with gluten, I have one who seems sensitive to it so he rarely eats anything with gluten - the test for celiac disease came back negative) taste the regular dressing/stuffing. Everything else is gluten free but since I am also yeast intolerant, my dressing/stuffing really just won't cut it for other people, that is a whole new ball game.

The kids do the bread, I add ingredients then back away when stirring and wait for a while before going back in to re-adjust.


-Kate

gluten-free since July 2004

Other Intolerances:

Strawberries and Banannas (2007)

Nitrates (April 2006)

Yeast (which includes all vinegar so no condiments) (Oct. 2004)

Peanuts (Nov. 2004)

Soy (Oct. 2004)

Almonds (Sept. 2004)

Corn (Sept. 2004)

Lactose/Casein (1999)

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Do dry runs...start about now and test out a non-gluten stuffing by stuffing a chicken with it, like lonewolfs. That way you can taste AND get the hang of the stuffing. :lol: :lol: :lol: How about a row of test cornish hens, one gluten free stuffing recipe per bird? I joke...who has the time...but a dry run some how with a gluten free stuffing might be good

I was going to suggest this, that you try each of the recipes you're worried about beforehand and make sure thye're good. And I sincerely hope that your family straightens up and starts caring about your health! These are the people who are supposed to love you most in the world. I fortunately haven't had anyone ever give me a hard time about being gluten free, and my entire family is wonderful, so I wish I could share! But if anyone HAD given me a problem, I'd tell them they can either love me or get out of the house.


If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill

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If I cook, it is gluten free. This applies to all meals.

One of the things I make for Thanksgiving are Crustless Pumpkin tarts. Just follow the recipe on the back of the pumpkin can minus the pie crust , pour into individual foil tart pans and bake, add Cool Whip.


Phyllis

Gluten Free - 30 years

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I'll add my voice to the masses: cook Gluten-Free, and don't tell anyone. It'll be a healthier meal, and probably better tasting too! If someone voices an objection after the fact, it sounds like *they* just volunteered to cook next year (and then you get to provide your dietary requirements for the menu... they wouldn't make a vegetarian eat meat would they?)

And remember, stuffing doesn't HAVE to be made with bread. I usually make a wild rice stuffing that brings people back for seconds, thirds, etc. Far more healthy than white bread too.

The key to coping with this diet is to NEVER be apologetic about it and never make concessions. It's a requirement for your survival, and you sure as hell didn't ask for it, any more than you asked for your eye color.

-P


celiac disease diagnosed in 1980 by experimental biopsy procedure

gluten-free ever since!

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I'd like to second the motion... If you don't tell them, you they wont' know. Cornbread stuffing is amazing.

Annalise Roberts has the best pie crust recipes I've ever made. I'm not celiac (my dh and ds are)and I prefer the gluten-free crusts.

If you have flour in your kitchen, you risk contaminating everything you make that is supposed to be safe. It just gets everywhere.

Just have a basket of regular pre-made dinner rolls on the table and nobody will be any the wiser.

Really... Make a roast chicken with gluten-free stuffing this week to practice. It will be awesome.

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