Sunday, April 28, 2013

Weekly Menu April 29th

We are back to normal this week with everyone back home.  Hats off to all you single parents out there!  The hubby was gone last week and it kicked my tail - I even had my mom here to help!  

Don't forget to check out the awesome GF products I found at the GFAF Expo in Chicago and enter to win the goodie bag giveaway!

Also I'm heading to Atlanta this weekend for another awesome GFAF expo May 5th at the Gwinnett Center.  If you are in the area come stop by and say hi!

Monday - Chicken Lasagna from Hope's Kitchen.  Met her at the Chicago Expo, she was so sweet!
Tuesday - Mexican Shepherds pie with corn salsa using G-Free Laura's recipe.  Another awesome Chicago Blogger
Wednesday - Slow cooker BBQ Pork Loin using Bone Suckin Sauce.
Thursday - Work dinner - family chicken nuggets, tater tots, green beans
Friday - Pepperoni Bake and salad
Saturday - Dinner in Atlanta - family leftovers

One last thing - if you bought my cookbook could you please stop by Amazon and leave a comment?  Thanks so much!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Gluten Free Bloggers Rock My World

The Gluten Free products in Chicago were awesome but it was the people that rocked my world!  I was humbled to meet so many of my blog readers and hear their stories.  I am so honored that people read this blog and are able to eat these recipes!  One reader said she uses my freezer meals with her disabled clients so they can have a way to cook for themselves!  Wow!

This was the super, fantastic, amazing group of Gluten Free bloggers I spent the weekend with.

There are so many amazing "friends" that I have made through social media but the trip to Chicago allowed me to make them actual real life friends!  This group of woman will be a part of my life for a long time.
Claudine, Lauren, Tanya, Collette, Cindy, Me, Kelly

Denise, Cindy, Franny May, me, Lauren

Here are details about many of the awesome people I have the pleasure of now calling friends.  I have linked to their blogs and listed their twitter names.  Follow them - they rock!

My table buddy at the show was Erica from Celiac and the Beast.  She has awesome t-shirts and sweatshirts for sale!  The cupcake design is my favorite. @CeliacBeast

Cindy from Vegetarian Mamma was super fun to be around.  We are kindred spirits in so many ways except I love bacon.  They avoid meat, gluten, and nuts in their house. @vegetarianMamma
Cindy, me, Claudine

Claudine from Gluten Free Green Bean is a Celiac, has a Celiac daughter and she's a dietician.  She is also super sweet and the most adorable pregnant woman I've ever met! @glutenfreegbean

Keeley from Keeley McGuire makes allergy friendly lunch boxes for her daughter   Keeley is very creative and a blast to be around.  @keeleymcg

Rebecca from Pretty Litte Celiac is beautiful and really cares about the Celiac community.  She had awesome bracelets and headbands for sale at the expo.  @prettylilceliac

Lauren from EpiFamily was so adorable.  She has such a sweet spirit and kind heart.  @epifamily

Amy from The Family Chef was hilarious   She has all the awesome techniques to make tasty and fancy GF food.  She was also my airport buddy. @thefamilychef

Kelly from Raising Jack with Celiac was so fun to be around.  She is the mom of three and one of them has Celiac.  @raisingJack

Colette the author of Learning to Bake Allergen-Free.  This lady knows her stuff and knows how to avoid lots of allergens when cooking.  @colletefmartin

Stephanie is a markup artist who has a blog and works for Red Apple Lipstick.  She was my plane buddy on the way home - so sweet. @skindeepbysteph

Laura from GFree Laura is epic when it comes to Gluten Free blogging.  @gfreelaura

Denise is the Chef and restaurant trainer for Schar.  She was so nice and fun! @ManagingGFree

Mel @GeekilyGF 
Amy The Savvy Celiac @AmyLeger
Betsy Gluten Free Betsy @BetsyBetsyBetsy
Alissa Breaking Up with Captain Crunch @divinemissliss
Tanya Allergy Mentor @allergymentor
Melanie Hope's Kitchen @Hopes_Kitchen
Lizz A Little Bit of This & That @lizznlittlebit
Elyse My Kitchen Shrink @Elyse_Wagner
Rebecca Going Free @goingfreegluten

Thank you GF bloggers for helping the Chicago trip be AWESOME! #GFBFF

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Chicago GFAF Expo 2013 Product Recap

The GFAF Expo in Chicago was WOW!  So many amazing vendors and so many amazing people!  Over 7,000 Gluten Free people came through the doors in only two days.  There were over 150 vendors giving out samples, selling products and providing education.   This was by far the biggest GF expo I had been to.  As a blogger for the event I was even able to set up a table and talk to a lot of people.  It was wonderful to hear everyone's stories!  We all have different journeys that bring us to eating Gluten Free and there is such a bond of understanding between all of us!

There were a number of big Gluten Free brands at the expo like Schar (love this team), Udi's, Enjoy Life, Rudi's and Glutino.  However, there were a lot of smaller and newer companies providing GF products.  It was wonderful to talk to these new companies and learn about their amazing products!  Chicago also has a wealth of good GF bakeries!  People in that area are so spoiled to have good, fresh, GF baked goods.

I will do a second post later this week about the amazing people I meet at the expo but for now here are the yummy GF products....

Top Products of the Show:

Glutenfreeda - Pocket Sandwiches
I tried the Ham & Cheese and the Egg & Bacon.  Both rocked my world!  These will be in my freezer soon!  The crust and filling are tasty and have good texture.

Freedom Foods - Cereal
Good quality Gluten Free cereal in fun kid flavors.  The company is from Australia and they are just entering the US market.  Buy a box if you get a chance!

Red Apple Lipstick - Lip gloss
Gluten Free lipstick, lip gloss and eye shadow.  You can tell these guys know their stuff and care about their products.  All Gluten Free too!

Crave Bake Shop - Cake mixes
Kyra, you know the baker with Celiac who won Cupcake Wars twice!  She has just come out with baking mixes that have the same ingredients she uses in her bakery.  I tried a number of her samples and they were great!

Kiki's - Blueberry cake and Spinach Feta Pocket
The cake was amazing good and the crust of the pocket was so flakey!

Pascha - Chocolate Bars
Nut, dairy, soy, eggs, wheat and gluten free.  Oh and they are so good and smooth!

Cybele - Chocolate Chip Cookies
Love her blog, met her in person and her cookies rocked!

Canyon Oats - Oatmeal cups
This Celiac family cares about making sure their products are safe and good.  The oatmeal cups are super convenient and taste good.  I ate one Sunday morning at the hotel and a granola cup in the airport.

Way Better Snacks - Sweet Potato Chips
They have six tasty chip flavors!  They are healthy with vitamins and Omega 3 and taste great too!

Giveaway Time
We got loaded down at the show with so many amazing GF products so I wanted to share!  I'm giving away a Taste Guru bag loaded down with product samples from the expo.  It even include one of my "Gluten Makes Me Sick" t-shirts!  The giveaway will end on May 4th.  A winner will be drawn at random and emailed.  If I don't hear from the winner within 48 hours a new winner will be chosen.  Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, April 22, 2013

Weekly Menu April 22

The GFAF Expo in Chicago this past weekend was FANTASTIC!  I will do a couple posts this week but to give you a teaser: GF cupcakes, cereal, cookies, hot pockets, makeup and SO much more!

Monday - Chicken Pot Pie (didn't make this last week)- using GF crust from Whole Foods and rotisserie chicken  - One Dish Meal!
Tuesday - Shepherds Pie - One Dish Meal!
Wednesday - Chicken Stir Fry with leftover rotisserie chicken
Thursday - Homemade chicken nuggets, steamed veggies and tater tots
Friday - Greek Yogurt Pancakes 
Saturday - Dinner out :)

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Only 3 days away!

We are only 3 days away from the Gluten Free Expo in Chicago!!! I fly up on Friday and come home late Sunday night.  This means a true mom mini-vacation filled with Gluten Free blog friends and tons of GF food!  And to top it all off the hubby even gets to join me for part of the time.

At the show you can find me in the blogger table area.  I will be selling my new cookbook Family Approved Gluten Free Recipes, t-shirts and sweatshirts.  The shirt design is awesome!  

The expo will take place in Schaumburg, IL.  Here are the details. 

April 20-21, 2013
9am Early Bird Admission $35 for adults $10 for kids
10am-4pm Open to the Public $20 for adults $5 for kids

The Schaumburg Renaissance Convention Center
1551 Thoreau Drive North
Schaumburg, IL 60173

You can purchase tickets online here.  

I will be doing giveaways from the expo for lots of Gluten Free goodies!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Weekly Menu April 15, 2013

This past weekend was great in Charlotte, NC at the Gluten and Allergen Free Wellness event.  You can read the full recap here.  

This week has lots of traveling and excitement.  Hubby is going out of town for a church conference then driving up to Chicago to help me at the Gluten Free Expo!  Over 150 vendors and 7,000 people are expected to come!  As an official blogger I get to set up a table to meet people and sell my new cookbook.  I'm beyond excited about this!

All that to say our menu is pretty basic this week since so much is going on. 

Monday - Chicken Pot Pie - using GF crust from Whole Foods and leftover rotisserie chicken  - One Dish Meal!
Tuesday - Taco Pasta Bake with green beans
Wednesday - Dinner out at Red Robin
Thursday - Pasta Bake pg 43 in my cookbook, served with steamed broccoli 
Friday - Leaving on a jet plane to Chicago!  I'll be eating GF pizza!  The kids will eat whatever MIL makes:)
Saturday - Something awesome in Chicago
Sunday - Airport food :(

Don't forget to check out my NEW GLUTEN FREE COOKBOOK!! 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Gluten and Allergen Free Wellness Event Charlotte 2013 Recap

The 2013 GFAF Wellness Expo in Charlotte, NC was awesome!  It was a blast to see old friends and make new ones.  The number of new products was amazing!  I ate so much fantastic Gluten Free food and brought a ton of samples and coupons home.  The event was held at the Blake Hotel in Charlotte and had a long list of great speakers to include Chef Peter Reinhart, Carol Kicinski, Lisa Stimmer and Chef Peter Pollay.  Udi's, Glutino and Enjoy Life were the main event sponsors. 

My hubby was able to make the show which made it even more special.  We had a whole 24 hours without kids.  It was a great mini-vacation!  He is going to do a guest blog post later about his thoughts and his views on the Gluten Free Beer!

The highlight for me was the people.  I was honored to have the opportunity to sit down with Chef Peter Pollay from Posana Cafe in Asheville, NC and do a one-on-one interview.  He is amazing!  He has the only 100% Gluten Free restaurant in NC.  I will do a separate post on that later.  I also got to meet one of my blog crushes - Carol Kicinski from Simply Gluten Free.  She was so sweet and even gave me some pointers on how to take better food photos!  While walking around I ran into Sahirah from Vigilantly Gluten Free.  She was so sweet and even recognized me from my blog!  I also met a number of newbie Celiacs!  Love welcoming new people to the family of Gluten Free!  Big hug to Hollis!

The food rocked!  It is so freeing to walk into a room and know I can eat anything in there and it won't make me sick!  That alone is the only reason I need to attend Gluten Free expos!  There were so many amazing vendors I can't name them all but here are some of my favorites.

Fuel Pizza - I rave about them all the time but they truly have the BEST GLUTEN FREE PIZZA I've ever had!  The hubby and I had some Friday night for dinner, cold pizza for breakfast before the show and more at the expo.  I heart Fuel Pizza!

Palmetto Farms - Gluten Free Hush Puppies!  I know!  They have amazing cornmeal mixes for hush puppies, pancakes and grits.  I will do a full product review later, but trust me - amazing!

Mod Paleo - They deliver tasty Paleo pre-cooked meals to people around Charlotte.  If you are Paleo and in the area try them!  Their chicken salad was to die for!

Luce's Gluten Free Artisan Bread - Beautiful and tasty bread mixes.  All you have do is add water and bake!  The Italian was my favorite.  

Glutino - I finally found the much talked about Glutino pop tarts!  So excited!

Rudi's - Super tasty grilled cheese sandwiches on their new recipe soft and fluffy bread.

Cupcakistry - Out of this world good cupcakes!  I had the snicker doodle and strawberry.  She makes a huge variety of cupcake flavors and they are light and fluffy!

Virtuous Living - Three different kinds of spice blends.  They smelled great and I can't wait to try them in my recipes!

Tonya's Cookies - Pecan pie in a cookie is all I have to say!

It was a fantastic Gluten Free Expo!  Nikki and her team from Echo Event Solutions did fabulous!  Can't wait for the Raleigh show!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin

I stumbled upon this amazing recipe on Pinterest for brown sugar and balsamic glazed pork loin a while ago.  I have made it a number of times and love how it comes out.  It is one of those recipes that makes you proud that you cooked it!  It seems so decadent and fancy.  However, it is super easy and a slow cooker meal!  This is a great recipe to use for dinner guests.  It will defiantly impress!

What You Need
1 (2 pound) boneless pork tenderloin (or regular pork loin)
1 teaspoon ground sage
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup water

1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons GF soy sauce 

How To Make It:

Combine sage, salt, and pepper. Rub over roast. Place in slow cooker with 1/2 cup water. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. About 1 hour before roast is done, combine ingredients for glaze in small sauce pan. Heat over medium heat and stir until mixture thickens. Brush roast with glaze 2 or 3 times during the last hour of cooking. Serve with remaining glaze on the side.

I find it takes about 8-10 minutes for the glaze to thicken.  I drizzle more glaze on the sliced pork loin when I serve it.  You will want to drizzle the glaze all over your dish - trust me!  It is just amazing!

I have served this with different vegetable dishes but love to make this recipe for summer vegetable tian because it is fancy too!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Easy Cobbler

Fruit cobbler is always a crowd pleaser.  It can easily be made Gluten Free and safe with a few adjustments.  This is also my go to dessert when guests come over. I always keep a bag of frozen fruit in the freezer so I can throw this together when needed.  I normally use strawberries so the toddler calls this "strawberry cake".  She asks for it at least once a week.  

What You Need
1 16oz bag of frozen fruit 
1⁄2 cup of butter melted 
3⁄4 cup of white sugar 
1 cup GF flour
1 cup milk 
2 tsp baking powder 
1⁄4 tsp salt
2 tbsp baking sugar crystals (Large sugar sprinkles) 

How to Make It
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. 
2. Mix together all ingredients but fruit. 
3. Pour fruit in casserole dish and cover with batter. 
4. Cover with sugar crystals and bake for 50 minutes. If you prefer your cobbler to be gooey just cook for 40 minutes. 
5. Serve with ice cream or whip cream.

So easy and good!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Weekly Menu April 8

This week begins the April chaos for us.  The biggest excitement for me this week is the Gluten Free and Allergy Wellness event in Charlotte Saturday April 13th.  I'm leaving Friday afternoon so I can have a mom mini-vacation.  I also have a work event one night this week. 

Monday - Pork Loin in slow cooker with roasted vegetables *dinner guests*
Tuesday - One Dish Wonder - One Dish Meal!
Wednesday - Homemade hamburger helper
ThursdayChicken with white sauce slow cooker
Friday - Hubby in charge!  I'm going to be eating Fuel pizza!
Saturday - Baked chicken with tater tots and steamed vegetables

Don't forget to check out my NEW GLUTEN FREE COOKBOOK!! 

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Family Approved Gluten Free Recipes

This is really happening!!  I wrote a Gluten Free Cookbook and you can actually buy it on Amazon!  

It is filled with over 50 family friendly Gluten Free recipes.  It has appetizer, breakfast, main dish, side dish, and dessert recipes.  

If you are interested please check it out on Amazon and if you happen to like it PLEASE write a review on Amazon.  I'm working on a giveaway for a couple free copies in a week or two.  

I haven't stop smiling since the box arrived!!

Cookbook Reviews
Lauren for EpiFamily
"She also provides a step by step guide to making freezer meals.  This is incredibly helpful, especially for the busy family!    There are many more recipes that I can’t wait to try and so should YOU! "

Erica from Celiac and the Beast

"I like that it’s NOT just a cookbook, but that it gives you real-life cooking suggestions – like freezing meals in advance and crockpot meals – something that is a necessity if you are an on-the-go celiac looking for easy meals and also money-saving solutions."

 Claudine from Gluten Free Green Bean

"It is a great “go to” in our household and the bonus is the ingredients list is usually short and I usually have them on hand! Sweet!"

Cindy from Vegetarian Mamma

"Pam has created a fantastic cookbook that boosts over 80+ pages of glutenfree greatness!  The cookbook is very user friendly!  The recipes are clear cut and use ingredients that you and I would typically have in our pantries! No crazy exotic stuff here!  In this awesome cookbook you can find recipes on breakfast, appetizers, main dishes, slow cooker, freezer meals, side dishes and desserts!  There are recipes for meat lovers and vegetarians alike!"

THANK YOU THANK YOU for all your support!  I wouldn't have been able to do it without you guys!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

5 Layer Magic Bars

I love big family holiday gatherings.  I love the atmosphere of laughter and talking.   I love seeing the cousins running around.  I love catching up with everyone and showing off pictures.  However, since going Gluten Free I do not love the mounds of food brought by everyone.  It is always a land mine for gluten.  An example from Easter this past Sunday: "Pam, the flour is just in the topping of the casserole.  Just dig under it and you'll be fine."  Um no thanks!  

I have talked about holiday eating before.  My game plan is simple - bring food I know I can eat and always have a Gluten Free snack in my purse just in case.  At family holiday gatherings dessert seems to be the hardest to navigate.  So I prefer to make at least one dessert item to share at these events.  This Easter I decided to try something new, enter Gluten Free 5 Layer Magic Bars.  They are an adaptation of the Eagle Brand Magic Cookie Bars.  

What You Need

2 cups GF ginger snap cookie crumbs (put cookies in a sealed plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin)
1/2 cup butter, melted
14 oz can GF sweetened condensed milk 
1/2 cup chopped nuts, I used pecans
1 1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 1/3 cup flaked coconut

How to Make It

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 9x9 casserole dish with GF cooking spray.  Mix together in a bowl the ginger snap crumbs and the butter.  Using a spoon press the mixture firmly down in the casserole dish.  

Then pour the entire can of condensed milk over the crumb mixture.  

Then layer with nuts, chocolate chips and coconut.  Bake for 25 minutes.  

Allow to cool completely and serve.

These came out AMAZING!  Super flavorful and sweet!  They tasted like chocolate fudge with yummy nuts, cookie and coconut.  I could only eat one small square per sitting because they were so sweet.  These were a big hit with the family.  I even had some people take leftovers home to enjoy later!  A pretty big compliment for a Gluten Free dessert sitting among gluten-filled desserts!  This will defiantly be a nice addition to future family gatherings! 

Post linked to Gluten-Free Wednesdays on Gluten-Free Homemaker. 

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Weekly Menu April 1 2013

Happy April All!  This is a busy month for our family.  Lots of traveling for hubby and me.  Some highlights are the Gluten Free and Allergy Wellness event in Charlotte April 13th and the Gluten & Allergen Free Expo in Chicago April 20-21st.   

This is the only week all month where no one is traveling.  

Monday - Grilled chicken and veggies
Tuesday - Beef Lo Mein - One Dish Meal! *recipe coming soon
Wednesday - Chicken Skillet - One Dish Meal!
Thursday - Meatloaf with mashed potatoes and green beans
Friday - Chicken Tater Tot casserole - One Dish Meal! *recipe coming soon
Saturday - leftovers

Monday, April 1, 2013

Rudi's Gluten Free Giveaway Winner Is...

#9 Kim!

Out of 226 entries Kim was randomly chosen as the winner of this awesome Rudi's Prize pack!

2 Rudi's Free Loaf coupons and 2 bags of Enjoy Life Seed mixes.

Thanks to everyone who entered!  I have two other giveaways in the works so maybe you'll be the next big winner!!

Congratulations Kim, check your email!

Happy Monday all!
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