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Need Ideas For A No-Fail Meal For Family Gathering

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This weekend I will be traveling to see my grandparents. I will be in a small town with no options for a gluten-free meal at a restaurant. My grandmother is now in a nursing home and grandpa really doesn't do any cooking so I thought it would be nice for him to have a home-cooked meal. But I'm not sure what to cook....lets just say I'm not a very experienced cook :) It will be my first weekend away from home since being gluten free. So I'm looking for ideas for a meal that wouldn't involve too many ingredients (I'll be traveling to get there and would have to bring ingredients and supplies with me), easy to make, and doesn't require a lot of attention because we may not be at my grandparents' house too much if we are visiting at the nursing home. I also would not have access to a microwave. It would have to feed about 10 people- of which most are not gluten-free.

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for 10 people, even though it's not the holidays, I would roast a turkey (or two chickens), and roast a bunch of vegetables too (potatoes, carrots, onions, beets). then, maybe, saute some green beans. boom - a well rounded meal with minimal cooking. if you want to get fancy, you could serve a salad too. :P

but what kinds of foods does your family like to eat?

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Do you have a crockpot? There is a blog crockpot365.blogspot.com. Stephanie O'dea started this site and all of the recipes are gluten free. This way you could put in the ingredients and the meal would be ready when you got home. She critiques each recipe she has tried. Whatever you decide to cook, enjoy your visit! :)

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Tarnalberry gave you a terrific meal idea with chicken/turkey OR you could do a roast pork -with the roasted root veggies. (if you do not know how to do that, we can help!)

OR a big pot of beef stew and a salad or an antipasto platter ??

Schar makes french loaves and dinner rolls you can heat up in the oven. Easy peasy. I prefer homemade, but these are pretty good!

Some gluten-free brownies from a mix and ice cream for dessert?

All quick and tasty and it does not matter if people are not gluten-free too--these

foods are "normal"... :lol:

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Thanks for the replies! I do have a crockpot, so that's a possibility. My son is going through a picky eating phase lately (seems the terrible twos are beginning) and will not eat chicken, turkey and sometimes beef. Pork/ham is usually good.

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You could get an already cooked ham like Honey Baked. That would make that part easier. You can make up twice baked potatoes ahead, then put them in the oven to re- heat & melt a little cheese on top. Or re- heat mashed potatoes. Salad or veggies with dip are easy to take. Get a couple of corn bread mixes like gluten-free Pantry to make right before dinner. Ice cream with fruit and chocolate fudge sauce for dessert. ( buy the ice cream in thier town)

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Fresh is always the best, that's what I love. You have many suggestions from others, roasted vegetables (red potatoes, carrots, parsnip, brussel sprout, sweet potato) add a little EVOO and seasoning. Add a piece of protein ( ham, beef, pork, lamb). Add a salad with nuts, dried cranberry or cheese. Your all set, stress free and more time to visit. If you use ham you can always make a quick soup as a meal the next day, with toasted gluten-free bread.

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If pork is what the kid will eat then I would make a pork butt roast in the crockpot overnight the day before your leave. Then you can let it cool and make pulled prok from it. Get some barbeque sauce and when you shred the pork, dicard the fat and Wa La!!! Yum. You put it back in the crock pot and then plug it in to warm it when you go to the nursing home and it should be warm when you get back. Just serve it as the meat and I'd make veggie sides like a salad and whatever hot veg you like. If they wanna eat gluten, they can eat it on hamburger buns and you can eat yours on gluten free bread.

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How about pork ribs? You can make a quick and easy dry rub, keep them refrigerated overnight and slather them with a barbecue sauce (I make my own but you can use purchased, of course) and roast at low heat for about three hours. A great side would be oven roast potatoes or sweet potato fries. Maybe a quick coleslaw and brownies for dessert. Sort of summer-y and picnic-y but it is comfort food and easy.

Or a pork loin? You can quickly season, sear and throw into the oven and roast until it is 150 degrees (still blush pink) and make a quick pan sauce that you spoon on top. Great with buttery mashed potatoes and perhaps some braised (don't worry - it is easy) or roasted carrots glazed with a touch of maple syrup. Maybe some meringues for dessert. Again, very simple.

Speaking of pork loin, have you ever made pork braised in milk? Just a few ingredients. You just season and sear then pour whole milk over it and roast. The milk becomes sort of like curd but all you do is toss it into a blender and whiz into a sauce, almost like gravy. Great with roasted or mashed potatoes.

For something fun and involved, how about a fondue? You could borrow a few fondue pots and have fun with meats and veg.

Another fun communal idea is to make spring rolls. You could use pork or some sort of seafood such as shrimp and some veg to go inside. All you do with rice wrappers is soak in hot water and fill 'em up. Just make a very quick and easy Thai sauce (honest - about 3 minutes to make).

ETA: Maybe your grandparents would not appreciate the fondue or spring rolls but the other ideas would be suitable I think.

Maybe make some chili the day before (how easy is that?) and serve over rice. Just reheat in the oven. Would go well over polenta, too, or even gluten-free pasta. Simple boiled peas would be nice with chili, or even corn. You could even make cornbread to go with it - again, very simple but tasty and appreciated. Another idea - you could serve it with corn tortillas and a couple of toppings such as sour cream, scallions or chives, etc.

Meatloaf is another great idea that can be made ahead, too. It is best if you freeform it on a sheet pan (cookie sheet), glaze and bake. There is a fairly recent thread on meatloaf here. Good with mashed potatoes and peas.

Baking potatoes could not be easier and there are such great ideas for fillings besides the ubiquitous sour cream and chives. You can use some bacon and an interesting cheese, for example. Or you can make twice-baked potatoes in advance and freeze. Then all you do is re-heat in the oven.

Meatballs are easy and loved, too. My favourites include Swedish, sweet and sour and honey garlic and lots more.

Just thought of something else for dessert. You could make delicious gluten-free chocolate chip cookies (I have a killer recipe - there is NO WAY anyone could tell they are gluten free) and make ice cream sandwiches out of them.

Edited by love2travel

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Just thought of something else for dessert. You could make delicious gluten-free chocolate chip cookies (I have a killer recipe - there is NO WAY anyone could tell they are gluten free) and make ice cream sandwiches out of them.

How about posting that chocolate chip cookie recipe in the Gluten-Free Recipes section? Who among us doesn't love yummy chocolate chip cookies! :)

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How about posting that chocolate chip cookie recipe in the Gluten-Free Recipes section? Who among us doesn't love yummy chocolate chip cookies! :)

I think I have but will do so here, anyway, in case it was all just a dream. :lol: They are chewy and delicious (and I'm pretty darned picky).

http://leitesculinaria.com/43464/writings-gluten-free-chocolate-chip-cookies.html

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OMG Love2Travel, that little description :blink: of cuisine makes me want to start cooking again. You are amazing. :o

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OMG Love2Travel, that little description :blink: of cuisine makes me want to start cooking again. You are amazing. :o

:lol: As I was typing I kept thinking of more and more meals and before I knew it my post grew longer and longer! I have thousands of ideas floating around in my head but wanted to post simple ones that do not require much work, effort or unusual ingredients.

Your compliment is surely appreciated! :D

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I think I have but will do so here, anyway, in case it was all just a dream. :lol: They are chewy and delicious (and I'm pretty darned picky).

http://leitesculinar...ip-cookies.html

They look absolutely divine! Thanks for the link!!!

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OMG Love2Travel, that little description :blink: of cuisine makes me want to start cooking again. You are amazing. :o

Makes me want her to come live with me!

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They look absolutely divine! Thanks for the link!!!

They are the best I've tried (and I've tried MANY). As it says in the instructions, allowing the dough to rest 36 hours really does make a difference. I've been experimenting! :P

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Makes me want her to come live with me!

A long while ago she said I could come live with her...but I'd have to shovel the snow from the driveway. :( And you know how cold and snowy it is in Alberta!!! :blink:

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If you're going..I'm going too Sylvia! I'll help you shovel. :D

Be prepared to work hard...I'm sure you're a whole lot younger than I am. :lol: But we'll eat well!

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Be prepared to work hard...I'm sure you're a whole lot younger than I am. :lol: But we'll eat well!

I'll get a snow blower!

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I'll get a snow blower!

I doubt I'd be able to handle it.

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I doubt I'd be able to handle it.

Sounds like Sylvia will be inside taste-testing the cookies while the "kids" are out taking care of the walkways.

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I want in, but sadly, I cannot shovel either.

I can pour beverages and set the table, however. :)

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Sounds like Sylvia will be inside taste-testing the cookies while the "kids" are out taking care of the walkways.

She'll probably at least make me keep all the dirty dishes washed while she cooks up a storm. :lol:

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A long while ago she said I could come live with her...but I'd have to shovel the snow from the driveway. :( And you know how cold and snowy it is in Alberta!!! :blink:

I do recall that conversation! The offer is still valid if you like! There is fresh snow just waiting for you to shovel. :P

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