As some of you may remember we started eating gluten free for Sarah’s skin condition back in March. I would love to say we have been exclusively eating gluten free since then, but with Paulie’s birthday, we didn’t do the best. So I guess I should say we’ve been exclusively gluten free for over a month now. I thought I would let you know how things are going for us. 🙂
It has been going better than I expected, and I’m blessed by that. At times it has been an expensive transition, but some of that expensive is my laziness to not want to shop for the best deal. There has been some trial and error, and I know there will be more in the future. The biggest one has been the pasta. We are a huge casserole family since Paul works afternoons and it’s easier for him to take casserole leftovers for lunch. That was one of the hardest changes because of the pasta and cream soups. We do make our own cream soup recipe now, and it tastes pretty good. But the pasta, well that was a bit of a challenge. I have heard good things about Tinkyada brand pasta, but didn’t try it for a while. Finally the other day I made some and this is the first time I can honestly say it didn’t taste gluten free at all.
We have also found a local, family owned business that sells gluten free mixes, spice mixes and other things at a great price. We found them at our local Farmers Market, and they are great people. We bought some of their mixes, but haven’t tried them yet. I plan on using them this week.
I am happy to say we have eaten out twice, completely gluten free, and it was easy to do and very yummy. The first was Red Robin, and honestly I think the waitress knew more about eating GF than we did. 😉 She was so helpful and they made eating GF at a resturant a great first experience. The second restaurant was just Paul and I eating out, and we ate at the Outback Steak house, and they have an exclusive GF menu we could choose food from. The steak was great, and it was so nice to have a lovely evening out, and not worry about what we were eating.
The most stressful time was this past Friday when we invited some friends over for dinner. I was going to do a simple hamburger and hotdog meal, but realized we didn’t have enough for everyone. There was 10 of us all together, with 3 teenage boys and 2 adult men, besides us women. I did my ‘normal’ big crowd meal, and made a pasta bake, using 2 pounds of pasta. It wasn’t until the day they were coming that I realized I had never made a completely gluten free meal for anyone outside of our family. And a pasta meal at that! What was I thinking? It was the first time I was using the Tinkyada brand of pasta too. And though I had heard great things about it, I never like trying new things with company coming over.
I threw together a nice, but GF meal. We had pasta bake, green beans, salad with 3 kinds of dressings, veggies for the salad and homemade chocolate chip cookie bars for dessert. But I was still worried about a non-GF family and what they would think. I didn’t need to worry at all. The pasta went so fast, that I probably should have made more. The cookies only lasted until we all had some, then the teenagers finished off the rest, commenting that they tasted like ‘normal’ cookies. 😉 Even the salad barely had any left when we were all done. This was the first time we’ve had this family over, and it went so much better than I could have imagined. I wanted to take a picture of the yummy pasta dish, but it was gone too quickly. 😉
The other thing we have done is when we visited my parents last week, we packed a GF lunch, and it worked great. We have made a list of GF foods that are easy to pick up at the store for my parents. My dad loves to have food and munchies for us when we visit and he was sad last time that we couldn’t eat any of the cookies he bought for us. So I’ve made a list of the things we can eat, that are easy to find, which I know will be at his house next time we visit. 😉
So all in all I think things are going well. We’ve eaten out twice, completely GF. We’ve had friends over to eat. We’ve traveled a bit. We have found pasta that will work great for us which is sold at WM at a good price. We make a GF all purpose flour blend that works great and can bake just about anything. And we’ve found some treats that we can buy easily at the store for a quick snack (like Hershey bars and Breyers ice cream).
Our next quest is GF flour tortilla shells. We have tried some store bought brands, but we haven’t liked them too much. That local company I mentioned before, sells a pretty cheap GF flour tortilla mix, but I’m not that good at rolling out dough. So our plan is to buy a flour tortilla press. We are trying to decide if we should get the 6 inch one or 8 inch. Sarah and I tend to use the 6″ more, but when Paul makes a taco, he likes the big shells. But either way, when we get one, I’ll definitely take some pictures on how it works.
So over all I am blessed with our GF journey so far. We do have some family plans this summer, but I think we are learning how to pack food that we can eat while with my family. So I anticipate an easy time eating GF with the family. Oh, and if you are wondering if all of this is worth it, yes it is. Sarah’s skin, though not 100% yet, is looking so much better. It is truly and answer from the Lord. Paul and I are also feeling better with some issues that we were having. Now if we can get Paulie to eat gluten free. But that is for another time. 😉