Healthy, Gluten Free Snacking

If you are anything like me, you start feeling a little peckish between lunch and dinner.

I like to change up my snacks and I try to make them as healthy as possible. (Don’t kid yourself, sometimes I just eat junk)

Here is a list of quick easy snacks:

  1. Mix one part salted nuts (any kind you like) with one part unsalted and one part fruit.  The fruit can be raisins (my favourite), dried cranberries, dried blueberries, what ever tickles your taste buds.
  2. Baby carrots, celery, cucumber, broccoli, cauliflower etc.  with goat cheese warmed for the dip.  If you want to take it a little further, mix some dill or other seasoning into the goat cheese.
  3. Apple slices with goat cheese and walnuts.
  4. Cherry tomatoes stuffed with feta and spinach.  (just chop the spinach finely and mix in with the mashed feta.
  5. My summer time favourite is a mixture of goat yogurt and fruit mashed together and frozen in a popsicle mold.
  6. My favourite winter snack is homemade hot chocolate sweetened with coconut palm sugar and a couple of mandarin oranges.

I have many more snack ideas throughout this blog and I am always looking for more.

If you are interested in sharing your healthy gluten free snacks, contact me at freeauntjayne@yahoo.com I would love to learn more recipes.

Well, that’s it for now kids.

Take care of you!

Love Aunt Jayne

 

Home Made or Store Bought?

I know that in today’s world it isn’t always easy to make everything from scratch but later in this article, I will give you tips on how to work it into your heavy schedule.

Firstly, though, I want to talk about the ingredients in store bought gluten free foods and mixes.

Because gluten is the thing that holds everything together, it must be replaced.  That is true for both home made and store bought.  My favourite is Guar gum.  Guar gum adds no strange flavours or texture and it does not upset my tummy.  You can also use Xanthan gum, which is more expensive and it does upset my tummy.

The following is a couple of the less appealing ingredients found in Gluten free foods and mixes from the supermarket:

Soy:  Once hailed as a miraculous health food, “Soy may cause atopic eczema (skin problems), asthma, bad taste, bleeding, bloating, constipation, damage to pancreas, diarrhea, goiters (enlarged neck due to increased thyroid size), growth failure, fatigue, immune changes, increased heart rate, insomnia, intestinal inflammation, loose stool, menstrual changes, …Nov 1, 2013″

Soy (Glycine max) Safety – Mayo Clinic

www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/soy/safety/hrb-20060012

Vegetable Monoglycerides:  These are derived from soy or palm oil (Please do not use anything with palm oil) Livestrong has the best information on VM.

Calcium Propionate:  This stuff even has an MSDS sheet!  Read the PDF from Science Lab and figure out if you want this in your food! 

Keep in mind too, that colours and flavours may be gluten free but many are detrimental to our health.

Preservatives are not required if you make your own foods.

Here is how I do it:

I take one day each week and I try to make at least three different healthy foods.  Bread or buns are made the odd time, but seriously, I rarely eat them.  So I make one pasta dish, one rice dish and something we don’t have very often.

This week, I made brown and wild rice with spiced chicken and vegetables, a pasta casserole and shepherds pie.

Each of these items will do my husband and I at least two meals.  The rice dish will do two dinners for two and a lunch for my hubby.  My pasta casserole will do three meals for two and a lunch for my hubby.  Depending on how much time I am willing to spend in the kitchen, I sometimes make four or five items.

Once all the foods are cooked and cooled, I divide them into meal-sized containers and pop them into the freezer.

It is so nice to come home from work and simply heat up a home made meal.

Hint:

Plan the meals you want to make before you go shopping for the week, pick up all of the necessary ingredients.  Then sit down and figure out a game plan.

For instance, If you are making shepherds pie, you might want to also prepare another meal with the same meat.  and make them at the same time. Organization is key.

I hope this has been helpful.

Have a fabulous day and take care of you,

Love Aunt Jayne

 

 

 

Take Back Your Power!

The opinions I am expressing in this article are conclusions I have drawn from paying attention to people much smarter than myself.

We live in a world where most people just grab the cheapest or most convenient products rather than reading the labels and making a wise choice.

I understand that many people are on a fixed income and we all know how expensive it can be to live gluten free.

Here is what I think – take it or leave it as you see fit:

  1. If you find a product that contains GMO’s, red or yellow food dyes, soy, or anything you can’t pronounce – DON’T BUY IT!  If we stop purchasing these products, the companies will have no alternative than to change their product.
  2. Just because it says manufactured in Canada (or USA) doesn’t mean it is a Canadian product.  I have worked in Canadian factories where ALL of the parts come from places like China or Mexico, and the finished product is merely assembled here.
  3. Some products are marked “Gluten Free” but are not certified gluten free.  Those products could be made in a plant that also uses wheat, rye or barley.  Those who are gluten intolerant might get sick but those of us with Celiac will have damage to our villi. Do not buy these products.  Again, if we don’t buy them, the company will have no choice but to change their manufacturing process.
  4. Microbeads.  They aren’t a gluten issue but they are a huge issue to our environment.  Please check the labels on EVERYTHING to make sure you are not contributing to the problem.  You all know that microbeads can be found in facial scrubs but did you know they are also in toothpastes?

Throughout Aunt Jayne’s blog, you will see this statement time and again:  ALWAYS READ YOUR LABELS.  I have gotten into the habit of reading labels.  My husband rereads them for me, just to be sure.  Products can change without warning.

Take back your power – don’t let the media lull you into a false sense of security.  Be your own advocate.

Until next time, take care of you.

Love Aunt Jayne

Swiss Chalet

Hello dear readers!

It has been a very long time, but I am back!!

I was in Newmarket Ontario at the Swiss Chalet and I ordered my usual meal.  I ordered a 1/4 chicken with baked potato. No roll, no sauce.

Christina (Bless her heart) was our waitress that day and when I told her I have Celiac, she informed me that the baked potatoes and rolls are kept in the same warming drawer!!!

I came home and looked at the pamphlet I got from Swiss Chalet and lo and behold, it says baked potatoes are gluten free.

The next thing I did was send an e-mail to swisschalet.com to ask that they store the potatoes in a separate warming drawer (preferably a new one) or change their pamphlet.

Honestly, I am not sure I will trust Swiss Chalet any more😦

The lesson here…. always, always ask questions and if possible ask to see where your food will be prepared.

Until next time, take care of you,

Love Aunt Jayne

Starting over

As many of you who follow me know, I have changed my diet in the last several months.

This blog will be reflecting those changes.

I no longer do product reviews and have removed those I have done in the past.  (If you find one I have missed, please let me know)

Also, I am changing over my recipes.  They will all be gluten free, dairy free, processed sugar free, soy free and non-GMO.

Please bear with me as I make these changes, but when you come across a recipe you are interested in, contact me for substitutions for the afore-mentioned ingredients.

 

Eat well my friends😀

Love Aunt Jayne

Aunt Jayne’s Gluten Free Honey BBQ Sauce

INGREDIENTS

1 ½ tbs olive oil

1 cup ketchup (check the ingredients)

1 cup white vinegar

¼ cup molasses

¾ cup honey

¼ cup GF Worcestershire sauce ( See recipe  http://wp.me/prAld-aJ)

1 medium onion, minced

½ tsp paprika

1 tsp minced garlic

½ tsp dried marjoram

½ tsp cumin.

DIRECTIONS

In a large saucepan, over medium high heat, warm the oil.

Add the minced onion and garlic cook until lightly browned.

Add remaining ingredients, stir well  and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat and simmer until thickened.

Remove from heat and cool.

Store in the refrigerator in a container with a lid.

Food Colouring Substitutions

Those of you who know me at all, know that I HATE additives, preservatives and artificial colours and flavours.

Anyone who has food allergies or intolerance (Which includes most people with Celiac) should be very careful about things like food colourings. (Store bought Red is made from crushed beetles for example)

I just found a site that gives you the how-to on making your own food colourings.  This site has many other wonderful articles.

I hope you will check them out here:  http://www.buzzle.com/articles/natural-food-coloring.html