Friday, March 27, 2015

Gluten-Free Easter

As with most holidays, the spring holidays of Easter and Passover can be a delightful time to celebrate with family and friends alike.  Since food will be plentiful, it can be a challenge for us gluten-free folks, but fear not for we have compiled some suggestions. Whether its egg decorating, Easter basket assembling or Passover preparation – spring holiday activities can be fun and festive with the proper preparation.

Easter Eggs
It seems like most Easter Sunday activities involve eggs in one way or another – make them more fun by adding a coat of color to those shells! Dyeing and decorating eggs is one of the most popular Easter pastimes. Although the eggs themselves are gluten-free, we do need to be weary of those color kits, as most of them call for vinegar. As long as you use a g-free vinegar you’re good to go, but you can also create your own colorful concoction if you’re looking for something more natural.

Easter Baskets
Chocolate bunnies, marshmallow chicks and jelly beans, oh my! I think we all know the feeling of candy-temptation all too well, and sweet treats are especially unescapable on Easter – they are tied up in a basket with a bow for crying out loud! Fortunately for us, there are plenty of g-free Easter candies out there to make up a bountiful basket for the kiddos (or to enjoy for yourself). So make like a bunny and hop on over to your grocery store to stock up Dove chocolate bunnies, Jelly Belly jelly beans and Peeps…just to name a few!

Passover Dinner
For most of us, holidays are just a reminder of everything we CAN’T eat, but Passover may be one of the easiest meals for us to celebrate. Many traditional Passover dishes are gluten-free or can be easily converted. I even found a delicious, gluten-free Matzo recipe for my Passover dinner that only takes about 20 minutes from start to finish – how easy is that? 

There are tons of gluten-free Passover recipes out there, here are few that will make your celebration a success:

To all our friends – Happy Spring!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Gluten-Free St. Patrick's Day

Top o’ the mornin’ to ya – St. Patrick’s Day is upon us! It’s one of my favorite holidays, for more than a few reasons. First, it means spring has (almost?) arrived. Second, we all get to don our pinch-proof green attire and head out for a day or night of good times with good friends. And third, it brings with it a bunch of great, holiday-themed food and drink options.

However, as we gluten-free folks know, we’ve got to watch those food and drink options. The good news is, there are a ton of gluten-free meals, snacks and drinks we can prepare and consume to elevate our Irish spirits this St. Patty’s Day, and many more down the road.
Give some of these a shot!

Gluten-free corned beef and cabbage

Ah, a traditional Irish meal! Most corned beef at your local market should be gluten-free to less than 20 parts per million, but junk that spice packet that usually comes with it – it’s loaded with gluten. No worries about the cabbage, though!

Gluten-free shamrock sugar cookies

These gluten-free shamrock sugar cookies will be a hit, no matter if you're sending them with your kiddo to school or featuring them at your Patty party. You'll need a gluten-free flour blend, sugar, vanilla extract, a gluten-free butter substitute and (of course) green food coloring.

Gluten-free beer and whiskey

Hey now, St. Patrick’s day just wouldn’t be the same without some adult beverages. Gluten-free beers are becoming more popular, and most experts view whiskey as safe to drink because distillation removes almost all of the gluten. But be careful, because a large minority of people with Celiac disease and gluten sensitivity report symptoms after drinking it. And that green dye in the beers at the bar? It’s probably not gluten free – why not just bring your own food coloring?

Other cool ideas include thinly slicing green peppers horizontally across the body of the pepper to uncover its cool, internal shamrock shape; preparing cucumber rolls with gluten-free wraps to make a tasty, green treat; and turning a rectangular veggie tray into the Irish flag by loading up the left side with broccoli, middle with cauliflower and right side with carrots. How festive is that?!

Check out our Gluten-Free Holidays board on Pinterest for many more St. Patrick’s Day snack ideas!

And here are a few more links to that will help make your gluten-free St. Patty’s Day a memorable one. Keep those bellies full, spirits high and those Irish eyes a-smiling!

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