Saturday, July 31, 2010

Lunch on the Go – Take Two!

 

Over the past week, I’ve been trying out a new snack to have at work:

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Vega Shake & Go Smoothies! There were three flavors available at Whole Foods: Vanilla Almond, Berry, and Chocolate. I went for Vanilla, but am thinking next time I’ll go for Chocolate.

The smoothie powder worked perfectly in my Blender Bottle:

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(And yes, I do have three blender bottles…but I love them so much!!!!)

Look at these stats!

Each serving of Vega Shake & Go Smoothie includes:

  • Two servings of veggies
  • 2500 mg Omega-3-6-9
  • 11 g complete protein
  • Only 100 calories
  • 1 billion probiotics cultures

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There really isn’t a lot of grittiness like in other powder drinks, but I will say the Almond flavor is a bit to much for me. It sort of tastes the way almond soap smells. :( But it’s not terrible! And I love having a snack that I know only has 100 calories and packs a nutritional punch!!

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PLUS you just mix it with cold water!!

Yesterday, I shook up a serving and then put it in the fridge for an hour. It was ten times better super cold!!

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Do you guys have powdered smoothies or drink mixes that you recommend?

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Lunch on the Go

 

One of the most common questions I get from readers is “What do you eat for lunch?” And it makes sense that lunch leaves new gluten free folks feeling lost. In my gluten days, I would pack a wrap or a sandwich and follow it up with a small salad or cup of soup.

But once I went gluten free, lunch was tough. I tried packing sandwiches, but at the time I hadn’t discovered Udi’s, and all other GF breads just didn’t appeal to me. They were thick, crumbly, and left me feeling like I had just eaten half a loaf of carbs.

So I started taking items that I would typically eat on a sandwich and topping a salad with it. Sometimes it works…sometimes it doesn’t. Yesterday it worked!

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I had left over chicken and roasted tomatoes from this tasty dish, and served it over fresh spinach.

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The gooshy tomato insides are the perfect dressing.

I washed it all down with my new favorite drink! Say goodbye Diet Coke demons and hello

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refreshing Pacific peach green tea!! I LOOOOOVED this tea. Too bad they’re like $1.75 a pop at Harris Teeter. I’m crossing my fingers they go on sale soon.

It was a super satisfying lunch! Now…if I could just get breakfast figured out!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Back to Breakfast

 

If you follow me on twitter, then you know that I’ve been in a breakfast rut. For over a year, I pretty much ate gluten free oats everyday…but I don’t know why I’m telling you guys that, you’ve seen the pictures :)

But since Parrish and I moved, I haven’t been able to fall back in to my groove. I tried a brief affair with gluten free corn grits, but they just never held me over. I would typically start feeling hungry around 11:30 and I don’t like to take my lunch break until 1pm. I flirted with gluten free pancakes, but I can’t make those on a regular basis.

So this morning, I decided to recommit myself to a relationship with gluten free oats.

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And I’m so glad I did!

Last week Bakery on Main sent me some of their tasty treats to sample, and I was SUPER excited about the Fiber Power granola!! (Actually I sort of begged for it) I’m all about packing in the fiber.

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And it was actually this snack size serving of granola that inspired my oat toppings!

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Triple Berry Granola and

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Stonyfield Strawberry Pomegranate Yogurt. This bowl was BURSTING with berries!

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In the oat mix: 1/3 cup gluten free oats, 1/3 cup water, 1/3 cup skim milk, 1/2 tbsp. Chia powder, and 1/3 banana sliced thin.

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I LOVE the way the yogurt is almost like an icing! If you haven’t tried yogurt in oats yet, I highly recommend it! 

I was super excited about the granola adding a crunch, but then I mixed it all together and got side tracked. By the time I got around to eating my bowl, the granola was saturated :( BUT it still had excellent flavor!!

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What’s your favorite breakfast? I’m thinking about attempting to make some tiny quiches in muffin tins, but I haven’t searched out a recipe yet.

QUESTIONS ANSWERED! A reader asked where I get my Udi’s, and the answer is at Earth Fare in Raleigh, NC. And actually, I should say Parrish gets them there because he drives by the exit for Earth Fare on his way home from work! (And cause he’s a sweetie)

Friday, July 23, 2010

A Be-UDI-ful day

 

My boss let me take today off in addition to my other off days this week. Maybe she saw the fear in my eyes, or maybe there is some invisible clock ticking above my head…counting down the days until the wedding. I’m not sure, but I was grateful for sure! I spent my morning finishing up the embossing. I can’t believe I embossed 100 recycled CD cases.

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I mean, this blog is Gluten Hates Me right?! Not “Marlow Crafts and Practically Kills Herself Before Her Wedding” blog.

After the embossing, I tortured myself further by handcutting 100 invitations.

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And then I rounded off my afternoon by hand stamping half of the tiny favor bags that will contain the watermelon seeds we’re giving away to our guests.

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One wonders if anyone will even notice these tiny details that I insist on doing, but I know myself. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

And while I joke about working myself to death over the details, I did have a wonderful day. And thanks to the kind folks at Udi’s, it was truly a Be-Udi-ful day! (Oh yes I did.)

So I guess my sandwich caught the eye of a hungry marketer at Udi’s and I was asked to review some of their other products. Which YES I of course jumped at. I have pretty much fallen head over heels in love with Udi’s and I couldn’t wait to see what else my new love had to offer!

For breakfast (my first course) I DEVOURED

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ONE gluten free double chocolate muffin.

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It was rich. Dark. Moist. Magical.

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I don’t know how the bakers at Udi’s do it. I mean, you would think that it’s not gluten free. That’s how perfect it is. I will say that I wasn’t overjoyed by the nutrition facts. After being so impressed with the bread, I was a bit sad about these muffins. BUT a DOUBLE CHOCOLATE muffin is what it is. It’s a delicious treat to be enjoyed occasionally. Or…often. :)

For lunch I broke open the FAMOUS Udi’s Whole Grain Bread:

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Friends, if you’re not sitting SIT DOWN.

This bread is not crumbly. It doesn’t weigh a metric ton. It doesn’t have to be toasted. It is heaven crystallized in a loaf of gluten free bread.And the nutrition facts make all other gluten free loaves embarrassed!!

I’ll admit I did dress it up a bit though. I mean, I could have just eaten these two plain slices sans everything. But I decided to use up some of the ingredients left over from pizza night (don’t worry we’ll get there).

I present:

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“That’s Not a Pizza Sandwich”

I mean just look at it. Ooey Gooey 2% Mozzarella with homemade tomato sauce and one slice of pepperoni. Toasted and Melted in to oblivion :)

I dare you to make this sandwich and try not to eat it standing up in the kitchen before you can even make it to a plate. Spread red sauce on each side of the bread, that’s the important part.

SPEAKING OF PIZZA NIGHT

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Have you guys tried these? For frozen pizza I will have to say that I was super impressed.

I had a hard time deciding what type of pizza to make. The crust comes in a pack of two, so Parrish and I each made our own. I thought about making a pizza like the one I had at Mellow Mushroom, or an olive oil base with artichoke and garlic. But I really was craving the basics: Red sauce, Pepperoni, and Asiago to spice it up.

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I topped my crust frozen and then baked in the oven. I did end up baking it a bit longer than the package specified, and I wish the instructions had indicated whether or not I should use a baking sheet. I opted not to use a baking sheet, and I’m not sure if it made a big difference.

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Can you tell I’ve been craving pepperoni? I used two big circles and cut it in to small strips. If I weren’t a blushing bride I would have LOADED it up.

I love the taste of this crust. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but it wasn’t starchy. I didn’t taste tapioca. It was buttery almost.

Parrish also loved the pizza crusts! He’s such a good sport about eating gluten free. Typically we would both share a slice, but when he told me the name of his pizza I decided to pass. He calls it, The Tri-City Squealer:

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Topped with onion, pepper, sausage, pepperoni, and BBQ. YES, three different types of pork. My oh my. Only a man could eat that and not have it show up in cellulite.

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Ok, I’m off to attempt to cut perfect triangles out of fabric. If you follow me on twitter then you know what I’m up to. Any advice?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Gluten Free Bride to Be – How to Emboss

 

Today I enjoyed a last minute day off. At work yesterday I asked my boss if I could switch my schedule around and work this coming Saturday but have Wednesday off. She happily agreed, and I began to make a plan. I had so much to get accomplished today for the wedding. Flowers, favors, invites…and the list goes on and on.

Luckily, I actually was able to accomplish a ton! The more items I can check off my list, the lighter the weight on my chest. Now if I just had a money tree in my backyard :)

So I wish I had a great recipe to share with you today, but I honestly didn’t eat much. Rice Chex for breakfast and a quick sandwich for lunch. Instead, I thought you guys may be interested in my wedding DIY task for the day:

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For the wedding invites, Parrish and I plan to send CD’s of music along with our invitations. I found an awesome supplier for the CD cases, and they’re made with 100% recycled fibers. I love the texture that recycled offers, but the cases themselves were pretty plain.

My original plan was to use the sunflower stamp that I used on the Save the Dates on the cover, but when I was in Michael’s today I ran across an idea that I hadn’t thought of : embossing.

Embossing is a technique applied to stamp ink that creates a plastic-y, shine-y, raised texture that adds some depth.

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And as it turns out, embossing is SUPER SIMPLE! Three easy steps:

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How simple is that?! If you follow me on twitter, then you know that I wasn’t quite sure about where to place the sunflower. Thanks for all your help! I decided on off center and am thinking about adding a “You’re Invited” stamp to the bottom left of the flower.

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And did you notice our new spiffy light reflecting in the table in some of the pictures?

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We hung our Ikea light!! I love it :)

Okay, off to finish the CD cases. And maybe cook something…possibly an Udi’s gluten free pizza?!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Wait…What Weekend? Part 2

 

So when we last *spoke* I was catching you up on this past weekend’s festivities. If you missed Part 1, you can catch up here! So where were we? Yes! Parrish and I had just left Ikea (aka my brand new favorite store ever!!). After an afternoon of shopping, Parrish and I headed over to my bestie sister’s house and settled in for the weekend. We had a quick supper with Lil’ Gluten Loves Me and got to work! The boys went to work preparing the pork:

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Rub-a-dub-dub

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The above are the highly coveted ingredients in to my BIL’s Southern Sop. It’s a tasty dish I assure you! Rub it in and smoke that baby!

While the boys were off in meat land, my bestie and I set to work to prepping the apps and the side dishes for the wedding shower. We made a few great five minute dips, but the best dish we made BY FAR was Hoppin’ Joan Salad:

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I’m not gonna lie. This dish is pretty much incredible. The flavor is perfectly balanced and the black eyed peas give it tons of depth. Love Love Love it. To make it you’ll need:

1/2 c uncooked rice
2 c. frozen black-eyed peas
2 t. salt
1/3 c lemon juice
3 T olive oil
1 jalapeƱo pepper, diced and seeded
2 cloves garlic
a few grinds of fresh pepper


Cook rice according to package directions. Meanwhile, cook the peas in enough water to cover and a t of salt. Cover and cook on medium for an hour or until very soft. Whisk remaining ingredients and stir in rice. Mix well. Add peas and mix.

Super simple! Best served warm. We actually served it cold at the party, but my bestie and I couldn’t keep our spoons out of it the night before! It is AMAZING served warm.

I think I may be in love with black eyed peas.

I wish I had tons of pictures to share with you from the shower, but in all honesty I just wasn’t feeling very paparazzi-y. I more enjoyed spending time with friends I rarely get to see in person, and laughing until my cheeks hurt!! The food was amazing.

I was a smart gluten free cookie and plated myself an assortment of dips to snack on before everyone was told the food table was ready. Good thing, because the first dude on the scene totally tried all FOUR dips (including a salsa) with Whole Wheat Crackers. Really!?! Even the ranch dip for veggies!!! Come on!! Gluten Hates Me, GAH!

Oh in case you’re keeping count, 59 days until the wedding!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Wait…what weekend? Part 1

 

Do you ever have a weekend that’s gone before it even came? When I woke up this morning all I could think was “Wait…what weekend?” Maybe it’s because I’ve been looking forward to this past weekend for months!! It was the weekend of our Co-Ed Just Friends Wedding Shower. PLUS it was our first event as an engaged couple! Since Parrish and I moved a few days after we got engaged, we never had an engagement party. So this wedding shower was super important to me, and I just couldn’t wait!

And this past weekend was filled with SO MUCH fun, that I actually am going to have to break it up in to TWO posts!! Let’s start with Friday:

I woke up Friday morning WAY before the alarm, and was practically itching to get on the road. To speed things up, I packed breakfast to go!

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Naked Juice is such a treat!

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Know what else was a treat?

This sandwich!

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Which Parrish once again gave the thumbs up! Udi’s where have you been for the past two years!?! I am seriously in awe of how delicious their bread is. You know how some gluten free breads have a “smell” when you heat them up? Udi’s has NO smell. And the texture is amazing! Are you guys as crazy about it as I am?

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We finished our sandwiches off with a sweet treat for dessert:

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If you follow me on twitter, then you know why we left super early on Friday.

One Word:

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Yeah baby. It was Parrish and I’s first trip to Ikea and we were pretty excited…and intimidated!

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It’s huge! So huge in fact that halfway through, I had to break out the reserves!

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I love these Amazing Grass GREENS superfood bars. It totally hit the spot, and in less than 2 hours, we were back outside trying to figure out how to fit our goodies into the car.

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Coming up next, PART TWO! And a recipe for this tasty dish:

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