Monday, May 3, 2010

Grilled Mini Portabella Burgers

Bryan's sister is a vegetarian, and lately we've been talking about recipes and cooking together this summer, so I've been trying to think of some vegetarian recipes to try out and make together.  I honestly don't know if I could ever be a vegetarian - I would miss chicken and fish way to much with the occasional read meat consumption.  I give people who are all the credit in the world But I tell you what, I could defiantly do it for a little bit especially if I ate a lot more portabella mushrooms.  They are so meaty and juicy that when I made my grilled portabella mushroom burgers I don't even miss the hamburger aspect of it.  When grocery shopping today I grabbed a pack of mini (stuffing) portabella mushroom caps instead of the big ones.  Grab some romaine lettuce and some mozzarella cheese and made some mini portabella burgers tonight.  They were so good!  Plus you can't really beat meal that takes 20-25 minutes to make (including marinade time)

Grilled Mini Portabella Burgers (you can do this with the large caps also)

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 table spoon chili oil

3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

1/2 teaspoon minced garlic

2 large portabella caps or four small caps - remove stems

In a shallow dish mix together the first six ingredients until well combined.  Add the mushroom caps and coat well.  Let them sit in the marinade for about 15-20 minutes, turning once or twice.  Heat grill or grill pan to medium, medium-high heat.  Oil the grates of the grill or grill pan to prevent sticking.  Place mushroom caps step side up for 4 minutes (for large caps, and 2 minutes for the smaller caps), turn and repeat on the other side.  Once cooked, top with mozzarella cheese and slices of tomatoes.  Instead of a bun I use romaine lettuce leaves.  Served with a yummy salad instead of fries! Enjoy

Leigha .... this recipe is for you!

Faces of Celiac Disease

Another Gluten Free Blogger - Heidi of Adventures of A Gluten Free Mom posted this on Facebook yesterday...when you have a chance please check out this video and her blog!

I was diagnosed almost two years ago now with Celiac Disease. "Celiac disease is a digestive condition triggered by consumption of the protein gluten, which is found in bread, pasta, cookies, pizza crust and many other foods containing wheat, barley or rye. If you have celiac disease and eat foods containing gluten, an immune reaction occurs in your small intestine, causing damage to the surface of your small intestine and an inability to absorb certain nutrients."  "The exact cause of celiac disease is unknown, but it's often inherited. If someone in your immediate family has it, chances are 5 to 15 percent that you may as well."

Since I was about ten years old (if not younger) I always had problems with being sick especially after eating.  Around that time I was diagnosed with being lactose intolerant.  For many years I went dairy free but still was getting sick...ALL THE TIME.  Little did I or my doctors realize that it wasn't the dairy making me sick, it was everything I would eat with it.   At fifteen years old I was diagnosed with both IBS and Fibromyalgia.  The Fibromyalgia was very uncommon for someone my age at the time and still is.  The IBS was no surprise because many of my family member either have that or  Crohn's Disease.

After twenty six years of eating pretty much anything I wanted: Pasta, Breads, Pizza, Chinese Food, Soy Sauce etc it was a hard change for me to switch my lifestyle to be completely gluten free.  I'm not going to lie its a challenge, but honestly having a good attitude about it, a great support system of friends (none of which are gluten free but made every effort to cook/bake gluten free so I can enjoy it also) and being forced to be creative with my cooking (hence my blog name) it hasn't been that bad.  There are a few days where I miss the texture of real Italian/French bread but besides that, the joy and feeling of not being sick all the time is truly amazing.  I can enjoy almost all the food I truly love with out fear of getting sick.  I cook at home most of the time and have learned to recreate my favorite gluten filled meals to be gluten free with all the taste that one could hope for.  These past two years have been a journey for sure and I'm sure all the years to come will be even better.  I have an amazing boyfriend who is willing to eat gluten free meals (he can go out and get real food, but at home it will be all gluten free).  He is extremely well at looking out for me and reading labels on products.   I'm very thankful for him.

May is Celiac Awareness Month and I would strongly encourage you to get tested if you have symptoms of Celiac Disease (especially if someone in your family has Celiac!-hint hint to my family members)

Thanks Heidi for posting this.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Almond Joy Chocolate Bark - Elana's Pantry

I truly love all of the recipes I have tried from Elana's Pantry.  This woman is amazing!!  Her recipes are simple yet filled with flavor.  She posted this recipe not that long ago and today was the second time I made it.  Actually today I made a double batch of it!!  Everyone that has tried it loves it.  Best part...its only 3 ingredients!!  Who does that not appeal to??

Almond Joy Chocolate Bark - Elana's Pantry

1 ½ cups dark chocolate 73%
½ cup almonds, toasted
¼ cup shredded coconut, unsweetened (toasted at 350° for 6-8 minutes)

  1. Melt chocolate over very low heat

  2. Pour chocolate into a parchment lined 8x8 inch baking dish

  3. Scatter almonds and 3 tablespoons of coconut over chocolate

  4. Using a spatula spread the mixture evenly back and forth to  ½ inch thickness

  5. Sprinkle remaining tablespoon of coconut on top of mixture

  6. Place bark in fridge for 2 hours to set

  7. Break into square bars

  8. Serve

Friday, April 30, 2010

Raise Awareness

I have plenty of T-Shirts and many of which raise some type of awareness.  From Invisible Children to TWLOHA, it stops and makes people think and ask questions.   Those are two great organizations and if you have a second I highly recommend talking a look at their sites and seeing what they are all about.

So, if we wear shirts for organizations, why not wear one for Celiac Awareness?  Check out these links from Cafe Press for your Celiac, Gluten Free, Wheat Free etc t-shirts, bumper stickers, aprons, bags/totes etc!!  Spread the word this month!

Cafe Press : Celiac

Cafe Press: Gluten Free Stuff

Cafe Press : Celiac Chicks

Cafe Press: Gluten Free