Friday, August 31, 2012

What does Labor Day mean to you?

What is it about Labor Day that makes me feel like summer is over?

Maybe it’s the last “summer” holiday.

Maybe it’s not being able to wear white anymore…Yeah, I don’t really follow that rule.

Maybe it’s the start of September.

Who knows, but I always feel like it’s the last blow out before fall. Which trust, I don’t mind. I LOVE fall. Plus September has some great occassions! MOH’s birthday, Parrish’s birthday, my FIL Jeff’s birthday, and my wedding anniversary!

I always feel like I want to fill the weekend with summer:

pool time,

 tomato recipes,

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and grilling.

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What about you? How do you spend Labor Day?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Rainy Days, Soupy Nights

Are you guys having dreary weather where you live? I hope that none of you are experiencing the hurricane and have lost power.

Here in Wilmington, we had a day full of steady rain with momentary downpours scattered throughout. Luckily Unluckily, Tuesday is my busiest day of classes and so I had no choice but to brave the rain.

In the end it wasn’t so bad. I pulled on my Wellies and swam to my classes.

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These turned out to be a great idea because UNCW floods very easily…and they’re perfect for splashing in puddles!

By the end of the day all I wanted was to pull on some comfy pants and eat a big bowl of warm soup! MOH and I were on (cutest) baby sitting duty, so a simple soup was perfect.

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And being me, I had to spice it up a bit!

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Roasted Red Pepper Tomato Soup with White Beans and Garlicky Kale

I used the Pacific Brand Roasted Red Pepper Tomato Soup as the base. While that heated in a saucepan, I made the White Beans and Kale.

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In a sauté pan, I heated one tbsp. olive oil over medium heat. I added two cloves of chopped garlic and stirred for one minute. Then I added in one can of White Beans – drained. Stirred and then allowed to cook for 3-5 minutes. Then I added in about 1/4 cup water to the bottom of the pan and one bunch of chopped kale (stems removed). Stirred and then added the lid to let the kale steam and wilt.

I stirred every 5 minutes or so, so that the beans didn’t burn. Once I felt like the kale had wilted, I added the mixture to the soup pot and let the flavors meld on low heat for 15 minutes.

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Served with a side of cheese toast and avocado…

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and Honey Boo Boo.

Don’t judge!

This soup turned out to be really delicious and just what we needed after such a rainy day. I can pretty much guarantee that you will be seeing the above soup a lot this winter! Super warm and cozy!

Speaking of warm and cozy:

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Have you ever seen a cuter more snugglier baby?!?!

So stinkin’ cute. MOH and I were pretty excited about babysitting. We were even able to give her a bath. Pretty much precious.

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Happy Wednesday!!

I made it to the gym this morning! I basically tricked myself while I was still groggy and pulled my workout clothes on first thing. I then gave myself a 5 minute time limit to get out the door. It worked!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

REALLY Homemade Gluten Free Lasagna

I’ve talked about my in-laws many times on GHM, but I still can’t say it enough: I am incredibly lucky.

Not only are they just fun to be around, but they’re letting me live with them during the week for school. AND they have been invaluable steady rocks for Parrish and I since his father passed away. We literally couldn’t have done it without them.

So Sunday night’s meal was really just icing on the cake for MIL Emily. Not only is she an amazing person, but she also makes a kick-ass lasagna.

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Rich sauce, flavorful veggies and meat, ooey-gooey cheese layered with Debole’s gluten free lasagna noodles.

Heaven.

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Bonus: It makes a big pan, so you’ll have plenty for lunch and even supper the next day! Super bonus: It’s even better re-heated.

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I’ll warn you that it can be labor intensive. But when you tell your friends and family that you made the marinara sauce, they’ll be super impressed. I know I was!

Emily’s Gluten Free Lasagna

First the Marinara Sauce! You don’t have to make your own. If not, you’ll need 50 ounces of your favorite jarred sauce. But the recipe below is killer!

You’ll Need:

2 cans (28 ounces) Crushed Tomatoes

3 teaspoons garlic, minced

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

.5 oz anchovy paste

3 tbsp. fresh basil, chopped

1/2 teaspoon fresh oregano, chopped

2 tbsp. Italian parsley, chopped

pinch of sugar, black pepper, red pepper flakes

Start by heating the oil in a large saucepan. Add in the garlic and cook for one minute. Next, add in the anchovy paste, parsely, basil, and oregano. Stir and cook for 5 minutes, letting the anchovy paste combine with the spices. Stir in the crushed tomatoes and Simmer for 45 minutes. Taste the sauce and adjust the pepper and sugar as needed.

Now the lasagna!

You’ll need:

50 ounces of marinara sauce, jarred or the recipe above

2 1/4 cups fresh spinach leaves, chopped

1 1/2 cups mushrooms, sliced

One package ground beef (Emily uses Organic, Grass fed)

One box DeBole’s GF Lasagna Noodles

1 egg, beaten

15 oz. ricotta cheese

2 tbsp. chopped parsley

2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated

Start by browning the ground beef. Drain off excess fat. While the meat is browning, start sauteeing the mushrooms in a separate pan. When the beef is browned, combine it with the mushrooms. Stir and then add the chopped spinach. Take this meat mixture and add it to your large saucepan of marinara sauce. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, chopped parsley, and beaten egg.

Now you’re ready for the layers. In a 13x9x2 inch pan you’ll start the following layers. Start with the first and end with the last in the list:

**NOTE: When using the DeBole’s GF Lasagna noodles, you do not have to precook your noodles! If you use another brand, you may need to precook the lasagna noodles.

1/4 cup marinara

4 DeBole’s GF Lasagna noodles

1/2 cup ricotta mixture

1/4 cup marinara

2/3 cup mozzarella

4 DeBole’s GF Lasagna noodles

remaining ricotta mixture

1/4 cup marinara

2/3 cup mozzarella

4 DeBole’s GF Lasagna noodles

1/4 cup marinara

2/3 cup mozzarella

1/4 cup parmesan

Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Then uncover and bake for another 15 minutes longer or until the top is hot and bubbly and the cheese has begun to brown. I recommend letting the lasagna stand for 10-15 minutes before serving.

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Simple? No.

Worth it? Yes.

Although, I guess that’s easy for me to say since Emily made this batch Smile But I still think it’s worth it!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Cheers to 30 Years–with a Cupcake Booty

You know those suppers out with your friends that you never want to end? This past Saturday was one of those magical suppers, celebrating MOH’s upcoming birthday.

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Our close group of friends chose a newly opened restaurant in Wilmington, Rx, to honor MOH, and we had everything we needed to celebrate a truly best friend.

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Best Drink. (Mojito)

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Best Friends. (Parrish and Mack – surprisingly wearing nearly identical shirts)

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Best Booty. (Miss Josey wore a very special outfit for MOH’s party. She clearly was the best dressed!)

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Her onesie even had a custom ‘30’ rhinestone applique. Not many babies can say that.

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Best Meal. (Rx is really gluten free friendly. Their chef is very knowledgeable and our waitress was great. I enjoyed every bit of this Flank Steak with Bliss Potatoes.)

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Best Clean Plate. (Seriously. I told you. Every bite.)

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Best at Blowing Bubbles.

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Best Dessert. (I bought Alex one of those disgustingly good cakes from the local grocery store that has the whipped icing with 1,000 ingredients. For myself, I stopped by a fairly new bakery in Wilmington called Uprising. I found this beauty ^^^ Gluten Free Red Velvet Cupcake. It was divine.)

Such a fun night.

I wouldn’t say I had the best hangover on Sunday morning….when will I learn to not drink a liquor cocktail and then wine?! BUT who cares because Saturday night was awesome.

An awesome night for an awesome lady.

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Happy Birthday MOH!

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And Happy Monday to you! I’m starting out my morning with a trip to the campus gym…hopefully I won’t be too intimidated.

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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Obsessions: Tacos and Lululemon

Well. Summer’s over.

At least for me.

Maybe it’s been over for you. Maybe you’re still in it. Maybe you never had it. But in my 4 day Summer Vacation from school and OWM, I can say that I took full advantage of having NO responsibility.

Well. Not NO responsibility. I mean I still have Parrish and Max…and Hazel. And bills. BUT it was nice to have nothing on the agenda for this four days.

Last night I celebrated my last night of Summer by making Taco Cups.

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There’s something about eating something in “miniature” that just makes it more fun.

And if you follow me on Instagram then you know that I also made a special trip yesterday to celebrate my last day too.

Oh Lululemon.

Having never been in a Lululemon store, I will admit that I was intimidated.

I assumed that everyone who worked there must be super buff and most likely unfriendly.

OH NO!

Was I ever wrong. Everyone who worked there was so incredibly nice and not intimidating in the least. They made shopping fun…and I of course walked out with the tank top I had seen on Janetha’s facebook earlier.

The Turbo Tank

Turbo Tank

So stinkin’ cute and super flattering to boot. It’s also incredibly soft and will help me wick sweat. What more do I need in a workout tank?!

And it definitely cheered my day, as I tried to think about not leaving my hubby again today.

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Alright friends, by the time you read this I’ll probably be in Wilmington! Or at least on the road…and hopefully NOT making a pit stop at H&M.

Monday, August 20, 2012

A Weekend Treat & Giveaway Winner

Man!

What. A. Weekend.

Friday I finished off my last day at work (I was working at OWM in between semesters) with a few treats:

Alter Eco Dark Coconut Toffee and Sparkling Strawberry Kombucha.

Both: DELICIOUS.

I thought the Quinoa bar was great, but the Coconut Toffee was even better! And the strawberry kombucha…well that goes without saying! Fizzy, Fruity, with a hint of…vinegar? I don’t know what the “flavor” is that comes along with kombucha, but I love it.

I rounded out the afternoon with a big glass of new favorite wine:

Layer Cake – Chardonnay. YUM.

On Saturday Parrish and I spent a good four and half hours whipping our yard into shape. Parrish’s Dad Mike was a self-employed Handyman and he has left us with some fun yard tools to play with. I don’t want to be dramatic…but the leaf blower changed my life!

After working in the yard, we headed to one of our favorite places in Durham:

the Durham Bulls Athletic Park!

We LOVE going to cheer on our favorite minor league baseball team. Being able to sit outside in the middle of August in North Carolina without sweating to death is pretty much unheard of, but the DBAP has these HUGE fans that give off an amazing breeze.

It’s almost chilly!

Sunday morning I woke up to a wonderful surprise on Facebook. My favorite local bakery – Zen Cat Bakery – was coming from Greensboro to sell at a Downtown Market in Durham. Best part? She had made FRESH gluten free cinnamon rolls!

Words can’t properly describe how amazing this roll was! Soft. Sweet. Cinnamon-y. Perfection.

I really had a great weekend…a last weekend before school starts this Wednesday, and this cinnamon roll was icing on the cake!

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WOW. I had so many entries in the Rudi’s GF Tortilla Giveaway. And the winner is:

Katie W. who emailed and said that she would make the taco cups!

Still want to win? Don’t forget that Rudi’s is doing a giveaway every day on their Facebook page through the end of August! Check it out!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

GIVEAWAY: Rudi’s Gluten Free Tortillas!!

So….remember those Taco Cups?

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and that sandwich wrap?!

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Those delicious bites were brought to you courtesy of the new Rudi’s Gluten Free Tortillas!

Y’all know I LOVE those tortillas and today Rudi’s is hosting a KILLER giveaway…right here on Gluten Hates Me!

ENTER TO WIN

One lucky GHM reader can win not only a pack of Rudi’s Gluten Free Fiesta Tortillas, but you will also win all the supplies you need to throw an actual fiesta!

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Included in the Prize Pack:

· Avocado slicer

· Tortilla warmer

· Muir Glen Organic Salsa

· Quesadilla maker

· Table cloth

- Rudi’s Swag & GF Tortillas

Seriously?! AWESOME Giveaway! I am super jealous I can’t enter Smile

How to Enter: Leave me a comment or send me an email by Friday, August 17th telling me the first thing you would make with a Gluten Free Tortilla!

Want more chances to win?

Blog it, Tweet it, Facebook it – then leave me a comment letting me know that you did!

Giveaway closes Friday, August 17th at 6pm.

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Want more chances to win Rudi’s Gluten Free Tortillas AND MORE killer prizes?

Check out Rudi’s Facebook Page HERE.

Each day Rudi’s is giving away a pack of gluten free tortillas and an amazing kitchen accessory! (Yesterday the winner received an Ice Cream Maker!!!)

You can visit their page EVERYDAY for three weeks and guess for your chance to win!

PLUS, just by liking their Facebook page, you receive a $2 off coupon!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Gluten Free Chocolate…with Quinoa!

First -

Thank you guys so much for the amazing comments, emails, tweets, and comments.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: The gluten free community is THE BEST. Supportive. Loving. Caring. Thoughtful.

Second-

Thank you guys for giving me the week off. I needed the time away from the blog and my camera to get through the week.

I can honestly say that I have grown up a lot in the past week.

I’m still full of love and kindness from the people in my life. It’s not that I just realized how blessed I am to have such a great foundation of family and friends, but in a week where I had my legs kicked out from under me, I realized how many people are there to pick me up when I’m down.

Last week definitely wasn’t about the food, but if you follow me on Instagram (glutenhatesme) then you know that I did find some ways to keep it interesting.

Like with a yummy gluten free baked ziti prepared by my MIL Emily!

Ten times yummier than this iPhone picture looks.

My new FAVORITE chocolate bar:

Fair Trade – Gluten Free – Quinoa –> What more do you need?! Alter Eco is my new best friend.

I’m not a kid BUT

I love these smoothies for kids!

I seriously love fresh juices, but my biggest problem with “adult” Odwalla juices is that each bottle is actually two servings and is honestly too big of a serving for me. So these “kids” juices are perfect!

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Happy Monday friends! I’m back at work today and counting down – a little over one week – until I’m back at school!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Losing a Father.

On this blog in the past four years, I have spoke often about how impermanent life can be, and how quickly it can change.

This is one of those posts.

This past Friday night, Parrish’s Dad, Mike, passed away.

It was sudden. Unexpected. And after everything we went through this past spring, the month we spent watching him get stronger in the hospital, it feels confusing.

But if there is one thing that I never question, it is that God knows the plan. He does not make mistakes, and so it is with this truth that I search out my own.

I can easily find shadows of the plan in the past few months, in the way that Mike was able to visit so many family members and dear friends. That Mike wasn’t in the hospital or hooked up to a machine, which I know he wouldn’t want. He was at home; exactly where he would have wanted to be. And that things were not left unsaid. These are the tiny understandings that are helping me build up the foundation for Parrish. 

Watching a loved one lose their parent can be painful, and watching a son lose his father is nearly unbearable.

But Parrish a strong man, and Mike had a big part in that.

And it is in times of sadness, that amazing things can happen.

It is in times of sadness, that you can realize how truly and deeply you are loved.Parrish and I have been overwhelmed by the generosity of family and friends. We have been supported and carried on this path.

But what we have also seen is how deeply loved Mike is, and that is solely because of what a good man he was. Strangers come out of the past, with nothing but fond memories and stories of how Mike helped them through a hard time.

These instances of love. Appreciating those you have and understanding the magnitude of those you now have watching your back in heaven, these are the instances of overwhelming happiness in our time of sorrow.

Writing this post has been the hardest thing I have ever written, but at the same time, it’s important to me, that you – dear reader and friend – know my life. And from my life I hope you can understand the impermanence of life and the importance of knowing you are loved.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Gluten Free Expo in Raleigh, NC

Source: GlutenfreeinNC

Local gluten free friends: the gluten free expo is almost here!

It’s Raleigh’s FIRST Gluten Free Expo, and it will take place:

August 12, 2012
2:30 pm - 7:30 pm

To be held at the

Cobblestone Hall

Located in historic downtown City Market

215 Wolfe Street, Suite 100

Raleigh, NC 27601

You can buy tickets online now or at the door. And you can read more about the expo on their website here.

The latest list of vendors:

 

So local Gluten Free friends, I hope to see you there! I’m so excited!! I can’t even imagine walking into an expo and knowing that I can eat everything inside?!?!

Would anyone be interested in a meet-up before the expo for lunch at a gluten free restaurant in Raleigh? Let me know!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Gluten Free Pasta with Garlic Gravy

My last week in Wilmington (before my break) I went to an amazing Italian restaurant and had a big bowl of gluten free pasta and vegetables in a white wine sauce. This delicious flavorful sauce got me thinking…

what about gravy?

And so -

garlic gravy was born!

Rich, creamy gravy with garlic, basil, and cherry tomatoes.

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Topped with freshly grated parmesan. The gravy sauce coats the pasta and also pools around the edges…

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slurp it up with a spoon!

Bonus: It’s EASY to make and fast too!

Gluten Free Pasta with Garlic Gravy

adapted from Goddess of Scrumptiousness Recipes

You’ll need:

One box of gluten free pasta (I used Schar GF Fusilli)

2 1/2 cups gluten free chicken broth – BE SURE gluten free

1/4 cup salted butter (1/2 the stick)

2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

5 cloves of garlic – minced

2 tbsp. gluten free all purpose flour

handful of basil – chopped

1-2 cups cherry tomatoes – halved or quartered

salt and pepper to taste

parmesan cheese – shredded to top

Optional additions: steamed asparagus or broccoli, grilled chicken, sautéed mushroom

Start by melting the butter and olive oil in a large skillet or sauté pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and stir – let the garlic cook just until soft and fragrant. You don’t want the garlic to brown.

Once the garlic is soft, add in your gluten free flour and stir. Cook for one minute. Grab your whisk, and slowly add in your chicken broth – whisking to combine and break up lumps. Reduce your heat and let the sauce simmer until until the gravy has thickened. Once thickened, add in salt and pepper to taste – but go light on the salt. The parmesan cheese you top with is a bit salty too.

After adding salt and pepper, add in the basil, tomatoes, and any other optional additions. Stir well to combine and turn the heat to low until your pasta is ready.

Dress pasta with gravy – and you’re finished!

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So flavorful and rich – without adding in any heavy cream or milk!

AND it makes GREAT leftovers! My lunch the next day was even more flavorful than the night before!

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Happy Wednesday!

I’ve been back at work at One World this week and I couldn’t be happier! It’s nice to be back, even if it’s just for a few weeks.