Glutenfreeda Original Gluten-free Flour Tortillas/Wraps

I found some Glutenfreeda gluten-free flour tortillas.  I am a sucker for a burrito.   If you go back to my earliest posts you will probably see that for the first two years after being diagnosed Celiac,  any time I drove past a Taco Bell I would break down and bawl.   Not just little tears but literally cry my eyes out.  This is how addicted to basic bean burritos I was and frankly it has been a quest ever since to find one that is comparable.  So I was so very excited to see a new product I have never tasted.

I went on Glutenfreeda’s site however did not find any information on this at all about the tortilla.  So either it is so bad they took it off the market or its so new they don’t have it on their website.  I am going to bet by my taste test its the first posibility, it is off the market.   If I am wrong I am sorry you have to taste this.

After I sat down and taste tested this, I thought to myself wasn’t there other products from this company I didn’t like.  Well yes there was.   I test each product individually as a company in my opinion can really hit gold on one product and still flop on another.  So I didn’t even go look or think about other reviews until it was all over and just so you have the info too here is my other review of the Glutenfreeda Hotpockets.

I always go into a review with the highest of hopes and perhaps that is my problem.  however these were non-GMO, dairy free, gluten free, no trans fat and well they looked good.  The ingredients were simple and minimal and only 100 calories for 1 tortilla.   Sounds good right?

first off I found these in the frozen section, and so I brought them home and let them defrost naturally and slowly in the fridge.   However unfrozen they were still out of shape, hard as brick and unbend-able. (perhaps I am picky but a tortilla should be able to wrap around the food its going to hold.)

Thinking perhaps maybe they dried out a bit in shipping (we do live in Alaska and it has a long ride to go) I put it in the microwave wrapped in a wet paper towel and put it on 10 -20 seconds.  It got warm and softer but not bendable and so I dealt with the fact that I would have a  broken tortilla in which everything would fall out.  But at this point I am going for the taste because I can deal with the mess.  OH NO.  Sorry  let me gulp some coffee because this tortilla was the equivalent of eating plastic wrap.  Very thick plastic wrap.  No flavor, not tortilla like texture, no nothing, I did not even get the slightest feeling of eating a tortilla.  No tortilla in it at all.

You know the saying if it quacks its a duck.   Sorry it looked like a tortilla but it wasn’t a tortilla!  No way no how and the remainder went into the trash.   No one would eat it, and trust me I have some taste testers in my family that would eat just about anything however these went straight to the garbage.   $10 in the trash!   trash, trash, trash.

Big Sigh…………I just don’t enjoy the flavor, texture, product this company puts out.   Not sure why its so hard, so many companies do a good job.  It may not be the same as the gluten product but at least its edible and enjoyable.    I don’t want an exact copy of something, I just want something I can enjoy.   Sadly this was something I can’t, won’t and will never enjoy.

Very disappointing………….two thumbs down and a belly ache to go with it.

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Review: Creamy Chicken & Wild Rice soup Mix by Laurie’s Kitchen

During a stint of illness my darling husband found and brought home some Creamy Chicken & Wild Rice Soup Mix.   The thought was very nice but since I have not had this brand before I wanted to save it until I felt better so I could give it a proper review.   Several times I looked at it in my pantry and read the recipe on the back for gluten free biscuits and drooled a little.   But first I wanted to do the soup.    Biscuits will be next.

I never have seen this brand but after looking on line she has a few things that are gluten free and I applaud anyone who will take the time for those of us who have no choice but to eat this way.   I always give a Kudos to those companies regardless of if I like the product or not

So lets get right down to it.   There are two packages which make two cups of soup each.   I left one package for biscuits later and made one pouch for my lunch today.   Directions say use water and I will admit you might want to do that to get more of a soup consistency.  I used almond milk because I always mix my cream soups with milk vs water.  It was just the way my momma did it and I have always done it that way.  What I got was a very thick creamy soup.  more of a dipping soup actually.   Oh this would be very good with a warm soft gluten free french bread.

One issue I had with this is the soy, I normally don’t do soy at all but I was so proud of my husband for finding this and thinking of me I decided what the heck.   Also I was looking at the nutritional facts and I am seeing 140 calories and 670 sodium, not all that bad for a processed food until I saw that there are 5 servings per the 2 cups per package so I am consuming 700 calories and 3350 mg of sodium if I eat the whole bowl and yes you can taste that sodium. I love my salt, oh how I love my salt (I have been accused of salting salt when I cook I am that bad) but this is a salty soup which makes me think it would do so much better in a biscuit or as a dip.

Moving on I love wild rice however even after cooking according to directions (remember I used milk instead of water so this may have something to do with it) they did not cook.   I was excited to see wild rice, then I was sad as there was hardly any wild rice in the package then I was happy again as the wild rice never cooked so I bit into hard pieces of rice in each bite.  Not very appealing and I thought I wonder what they will taste like in the biscuit, but that’s another post.

So Basically lets get right down to the over all taste, was it good?  well it was a thick creamy salty chicken soup. First bites were awesome but one would want to eat in moderation with the sodium and really after about 10 bites you feel like you have swallowed an ocean.  I am Sorry #Laurie’s Kitchen but perhaps you should really cut down and by cut down I mean at least 1/2 the amount of sodium you add.  I think minus all the salt it would be an awesome soup/sauce or whatever you would like to do with it.

Before I write them off all together because I won’t be eating this as a soup again I want to try the biscuits.  I really can imagine these in a biscuit.  it would be like a dumpling my momma would cook in her chicken noodle soup. That is what I am picturing in my mind when I am tasting this soup anyway.

what are your thoughts, have you tried this soup or another one of her products?  I would love to get some opinions.

Kudos again for making a gluten free product………now lets cut the sodium just a bit please because unless the biscuits are amazing this product will not be in my pantry for future use.

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Krusteaz Honey Cornbread Review

I found the new Krusteaz Honey cornbread at the store this weekend.    I have heard great reviews on their pancakes so I thought this has to be good too.   Although good  I was not impressed nor am I willing to put this in my pantry for back up cornbread.

It is very simple to make homemade cornbread and it’s fast and a good dish to make in little to no time at all. But on with the review………..

The Krusteaz cornbread mixed well, poured well and baked up very nice and I was so very hopeful this would be good.  I just couldn’t get past the after taste.   Food should not have an aftertaste, it should continue to taste like what it first did as it entered your mouth.   I am thinking its the blend of flours they use, I am not sure but it wasn’t pleasant.   So I put it to two tests.

Test 1:  Honey!  Honey makes everything better right?   well yes but not in this case, the aftertaste was to pungent that I literally ate half and threw the rest away.

Test 2:  Smothered it in chili dog.   This worked for about 3/4 of the meal until that after taste started showing through.   Up until then it was perfect pair of sweet, salty, spicy, meaty, corn bready goodness.  That made me sad that the after taste showed up.

So over all, I am very sorry but I will not be buying this product again. Would I eat it again, yes maybe if it were free.   I am still trying the other items though, I like the brand and I think they have potential and I would love to try them down the line perhaps if things change in their cornbread formulation.

I am not writing off the other products, I just haven’t tried them yet.

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Allergy free

Corned beef has been in the slow cooker all day, (two slow cookers since we are serving 6) the cabbage softened in the corned beef juices and potatoes and carrots have been pressured cooked in juices.  I have my Irish Soda Bread, and my green cookies already to go.  Bring on the celebrations!

Corned beef is simple you just open the package from the store and plop in your slow cooker and cover with water and let sit on low all day long!

After the corned beef is done you take it out and keep warm while your cabbage stews in the juices until done.

Take veggies (our favorite is red potatoes and carrots) and place in pressure cooker with some corned beef juice and cook until done.

My Irish Soda bread is an old favorite and you can find it here: Irish Soda Bread Recipe.

My cookies are the basic Chocolate chip cookie recipe (use your favorite) with an added box of Pistachio pudding for a green color.   The pudding makes it moist and the flavors are terrific.

We are going to be eating good tonight!

Contains NO gluten, dairy or soy!

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QuestBar Review

My mouth has died and gone to heaven!  

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I am enjoying this little beauty right now!  My mouth is exploding with flavors and the gluten free graham crackers in this are just divine.   Today was my first day trying the smores and I have  cookies and cream for my next taste adventure. I am one happy person right now literally, these make me smile!

I discovered these quest bars in January however my daughter liked the cookie dough so I just started buying those by the box and then ventured out to some other flavors recently.  Although I do not like them all (just not my taste but they may be your favorite) I love most of them.

First off they are filling and most the times when I need a bar it is because I am on the go for a meal and need something to replace that.  At 180 calories I have to remember to go back and eat more but honestly I forget sometimes as I am 100% satisfied until its time for my next meal.

They have 20 grams of protein.   My body personally thrives on protein and the more the better so sometimes when I am lacking my protein intake I grab one of these as a snack to help boost my intake.   Getting my protein has never tasted so good.

13 grams of fiber which is why I suppose they are so filling however I don’t keep track of my fiber but if you are then this is good.

I don’t do sugar, no honey, no corn syrup no tapioca syrup, high fructose what ever you want to call sugar that isn’t natural.   If I do a sugar, I use stevia, erythitol or Xylitol.  All other sugar subs cause extreme issues with me not to mention weight gain, and awful side effects so when I saw this I was excited.   it has sucralose which made me hesitate for a little, I actually waited over a month before I got brave enough to try it.   But the sucralose is so minimal that I have not had any side effects whatsoever and I haven’t gained a single pound  (okay I lost some but that’s okay, that comes from when I forget to add more to my meal than just a bar).  So I am okay with the sweeteners in this product.

The taste in these little things are simply divine to put it simply!   I eat it very slowly with a cup of coffee and I feel like I have cheated in the worst way by indulging in such sweet chewy flavorful goodness.   My mouth is watering just thinking about the bar that was sitting before me when I started writing this post.  I could easily go grab another but that would be an over kill on pure joy on my body’s senses.

What about the other products? Quest products

I have only tried the bars, but they have protein powders, (really thinking they should put the peanut butter and chocolate one together as a swirl mix), they have chips, they have pasta, they also have peanut butter cups.    Why haven’t I tried these?   Well all my store carries is the protein bars and protein powder so I am limited on just grabbing something to try.   Soon I hope to try everything!

I would love to try everything and let you know how it is but for now all I can vouch for is the bars but oh what a review that is!    I am not kidding when I say if I were stranded on an island I would want to be stranded with a life time supply of these bars in a variety of all their flavors!   Now If I knew I was never going to get off that island and I would die there then of course I would say give me unlimited pastries and donuts (after all why be healthy at that point right?).   Oh and don’t forget the coffee that would be my beverage of choice for either one.

If you haven’t tried one – Go do so right now.  My gym carries the bars, and my local GNC.  You can also find them on Amazon and right from Quest nutrition.    There is no excuse not to get one.

Oh there is one word of warning:   they are sooooooooooooo addictive!  Sorry that is the downside.

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Shrimp Soup

I love finding soup recipes in magazines; my problem is I can never follow the direction. They are either lacking on ingredients or lacking on the taste. After tweaking I usually find a recipe I really like, the shrimp soup for example. This turned out wonderful, but after serving it to the family paired with a grilled cheese (because you can’t eat a tomato based soup without a grilled cheese, just can’t be done) I was wishing I had not as this would have been a nice lunch for me all week long. Now I have to go to the store and buy all the ingredients again.

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Ingredients:
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion diced
1 bell pepper diced
4 cloves garlic minced
1 cup instant brown rice
Pinch or two of red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups of water*
1 can creamed coconut milk
2 bouillon cubes, vegetable (or 4 if using small cubes)*
8oz tomato paste*
2 lbs. baby cocktail shrimp
2 tbsp. lemon juice (real lemon juice or juice your own)

In a large soup pan put the olive oil, onion, pepper, garlic and sauté. Cook until the veggies are soft. Add all other ingredients except shrimp and let simmer adjusting seasoning to taste. Add in shrimp and cook until done about 3-5 minutes. Do not overcook or shrimp will get rubbery.
*Instead of water you can replace with vegetable stock (I added water then didn’t like taste so added bouillon)
*if you like chunks of tomato add 15 oz. crushed tomatoes instead of paste (I have a non-tomato chuck eater)
I will be making this again and again. Tomatoes and shrimp are two of my favorite things in soups.  This time however the large pan will be all mine.

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Gluten Free Star Bread

I am sure you all have seen the you-tube videos and recipes how to make the Nutella Star Bread, if you have not here is a link: Star Bread

Two problems, We cannot have gluten nor Nutella due to food allergies and auto immune disease (Celiac)  but we really wanted this Star bread.

Well I guess that means we make our own!

Finding a pizza dough that would be sturdy enough to roll out and roll thin (no elastic in gluten-free bread) was rough but we managed by adding a little more flour to the Bob Red Mill gluten-free pizza mix and I will tell you it was not as thin as what they did so ours turned out a little denser and a little harder to twist.

For the Nutella we replaced that with a chocolate peanut butter called Dark Chocolate Dreams.

Was it good?   well it may not have looked as pretty as the video but it tasted great!  And since its St. Patrick’s day next week I had to try to make a 4 leaf clover using the same technique.  I free-handed that one so it’s not as neat looking but still tasted great!

If I can make this, anyone can make this, it was really very simple.    It took my daughter and I no time at all rolling it all out spreading and twisting.    It may look intimidating but it really isn’t at all.

You should try your own.

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Gluten/Dairy Free Shamrock Shake

thwho doesn’t love the shamrock shake from McDonald’s?    I love them but I don’t love the ingredients!   I read this recently and it really made me think about what I was buying.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/15/shamrock-shake-calories-nutrition-ingredients-mcdonalds-st-patricks-day_n_2885415.html

Mostly I have made these at home and have done it with several different recipes:

put all in the blender and mix

1.   use 1 cup of milk, 1 cup of vanilla ice cream, 1-2 drops peppermint essential oil, 2 drops of green food coloring.  Top with whipped cream and a cherry. (add more milk or more ice cream for your favorite consistency)

2. Chocolate chip mint ice cream, milk and mix.  top with whipped cream and cherry if desired.  If your mint ice cream isn’t already green you can add food coloring.

3.  Dairy free, Oh so delicious vanilla or mint ice cream, small amount of coconut milk and mix.  if using vanilla add in some peppermint essential oil or flavoring and green food dye or leave it dye free.  Its the flavor not the green that makes it good.

4.  Want to get really creative?  make your own ice cream for the base of this dessert.   Can’t beat the flavor on that!

Now you don’t have to drive all the way down to McDonald’s or other fast food just to have your St. Patrick’s Day Shake.

Enjoy.

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Chocolate Covered Gluten Free Oreos

Ever see those chocolate covered oreos at bake sales and thought to yourself “wow I would love to try one of those”   its sort of like deep fried Twinkies at state fairs; you know they are so bad for you but you want to try them but you can’t ever try the good things because you can’t eat stupid gluten!   ARGH as my pirate grandpa use to say.

So my son and I bored over spring break decided to do something about the oreo situation with ingredients we had in the house and whipped up in a matter of minutes the cutest little treats.   Seeing that it was close to St. Patrick’s Day we decided to make a few of them Holiday themed.

It was so easy I could have let him (9 years old) do it all by himself.

Ingredients:   Enjoy life Chocolate chips, Gluten Free oreo type cookies, Popsicle sticks (makes for easy dipping), some leftover green candy melts used for my pretzel Christmas tree project, and green m&m’s from my son’s recent dairy reintroduction challenge and parchment paper.

1. Place a  Popsicle stick in between the GF oreo type cookies 2. Place chocolate chips in a small bowl and microwave 30 seconds at a time stirring in between to get the right consistency.   3.  dip your cookies and let the excess drip off.  4. place on parchment paper and put a green m&m in the center or what ever color theme you are going for. 5. place in the fridge to harden. 6. melt a small amount of colored candy melts to drizzle over the top of each. 7.  Enjoy!

It could not have been more simple.  If it was complicated in anyway you would not see me posting here.  This is literally something I can whip up in 10 minutes time on any occasion.   I feel bad I waited as long as I did to do this but I was honestly thinking it would be more difficult and time consuming and messy.

Mess was a breeze I simply gave the dipping dish to my son who licked it clean and all was good.   To see his face when I told him he could have the rest of the chocolate made my whole day.

Now on to the twinkies…………..nah just kidding that I know would be time consuming and really not worth the trouble.

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Irish Soda Bread – Gluten Free

Irish Soda bread is a St. Patrick’s Day favorite but I am going to let you in on a little secret.  9 years ago when I started my Gluten Free journey  I couldn’t make bread to save my life.   I had so many flops that I was dubbed queen of the failed loaves.  however We had one heck of a thanksgiving our first year because I turned all those failed loaves into stuffing cubes.

Months down the line I gave up cooking your traditional yeast, I have to rise type breads and found a recipe for an Irish soda bread.   It looked good so I tried it minus the raisins/currents and for the next year or so this was our staple for breads.  Since we loved a french bread type bread anyway this was a great sub. (you can add cinnamon and raisins for a cinnamon bread which was also good)

So If you are not Bread Savvy yet with the yeast breads give this a go  or enjoy the traditional way for your St. Patrick’s Day feast this year.
3 cups gluten free flour blend (I use Tom Sawyer of course)
3 tablespoons sugar
1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
1⁄2 teaspoon baking powder
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1 cup dry currants or raisins (if you are making it traditional style, omit if you just want bread)
1 1⁄3 cups buttermilk (for milk sub use almond/coconut milk and add 1/2 tsp lemon juice)
Directions

Sift flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
Stir in currants/raisins and milk of choice.
Combine until well blended.
Dough will be sticky. Use GF flour to make it easier to work with
Shape into an 8″ round loaf.
Place on un-greased cookie sheet.

Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes

Note:   Shape into a french bread loaf for french bread, or put into a bread pan for a traditional loaf of bread.  You can also make mini rounds for sandwich rolls.  

Now you have a bread to enjoy.

Let me know how it turns out for you.

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