Monday, January 26, 2009

Cowboy Star

My husband and I went to Cowboy Star for a special occasion. Typically steak restaurants are pretty safe and the higher-end places usually are pretty good about educating their staff about food allergies. However, when I told the waitress that I could not eat gluten, she had no idea what I was talking about. She had not even heard the word gluten before, and I thought I was talking about glucose! I tried to explain to her that I could not eat wheat, and clearly this was beyond her comprehension as she brought both me and husband individual bread portions. Overall, the food was okay. I liked the atmosphere since it was more relaxed than some other steak restaurants, however, their inability to educate their servers leaves me doubting I will go back.

Healthy Creations Organic Meals

I tried Healthy Creations after hearing the owner speak at the January meeting of Gluten Free in San Diego Support Group. The owner is also gluten free so she understands the dietary restrictions completely. Healthy Creations offers a monthly menu and you can either go to their location and assemble your own meals from their menu and take them home and put them in your freezer, or you can have the foods prepared for you and pick them up or have them delivered. Since I am not a big cook, I had my meals prepared and delivered to my door. In addition to my gluten allergy, I also have a nut allergy, so I just mentioned those in my online order and everything was made safe for me to eat. I ordered several meals, sides and desserts. Most of the ingredients are organic and locally produced so the food is good for you and good for the environment. So far, I have sampled the Mexican lasagna which is very good but very rich - I definitely recommend mixing a healthy serving of veggies with each portion. The maple roasted butternut squash is good but a little too sweet for me. The raw chocolate mousse is also good but very rich and good in small servings. Overall this is a wonderful business to have near to San Diego! The portion size is good and I can get about 5 servings out of a 3 serving lasagna. The prices are also reasonable and works out to $5 or less per meal. What is better than healthy meals that I can eat without allergy worry? I intend to keep ordering from Healthy Creations and am excited to see their February menu. Just make sure you mention that you are gluten free when ordering!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Glutino Duo Mushroom

I tried Glutino's Gluten Free Penne Duo Mushroom frozen entree because I wanted a quick and easy meal. The only part of it that was good was the quick. It took 5 minutes to cook in the microwave. However, it was not easy to eat. I have to agree with someone else's review that calls this entree crapino. After following the directions to the letter, the pasta came out undercooked and the sauce was bland at best and it looked pretty gross. This was definitely not worth the $5+ I paid for it at Whole Foods. The spaghetti sauce in a jar does a much better job than Glutino in the flavor department. Not buying this again.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Arrivederci Restorante in Hillcrest

My husband and I went here for dinner one night. They have a set menu plus a daily menu and there were two kinds of risotto on the menu the night we went. I got the mushroom risotto and it was very yummy. We also got an appetizer that had spinach, prosciutto, asiago cheese and some goodies. The serving sizes were generous so there was some left over for the next day. The service was excellent! And for dessert I had the creme brulee. They also have a good wine list. Parking is a pain but that's Hillcrest. Prices were between $11 and $20 for a main entree. I did not talk to the chef about the exact ingredients of my food but I didn't have any problems. However, since they don't advertise anything as being gluten free, I would recommend that someone is very sensitive, to call ahead and ask.

Barolo Ristorante Italiano in La Jolla

I went to this restaurant with a gluten-free dining out group. One of the chefs has a child who is gluten-free so he understands the diet restrictions. I ordered the Rigatoni Salmone and it was delicious. The portion size was good and I had some left over to take home for the next day. The house wine was good and inexpensive. Italian has always been my favorite food and I have missed being able to go Italian restaurants so I am glad I have found this one. Parking is easy because it is a few blocks away from UTC. If you want to go here for a gluten-free meal - call a couple hours ahead because they have to buy the pasta.

Whole Foods Brownie Mix = OK

I made these brownies after having a major chocolate craving. Instead of the recommended butter, I used half olive oil and half apple sauce to reduce the fat content. I was disappointed when these brownies came out of the oven - they didn't seem very chocolately even though they contain little chocolate chips. However, after the brownies cooled, they tasted better. They were still lacking some chocolately flavor that I wanted, but they weren't bad. I think I will try a different mix next time. This mix was from Whole Foods' 365 brand and was about 3.99 per box.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

I'm in heaven over a protein bar

As someone with a NUT and a GLUTEN allergy, it is next to impossible to find an energy or a protein bar. So I was super excited when I saw the Comfort Bars in Whole Foods and they didn't have a peanut flavor, which always means all flavors may contain peanuts. Although the name is a little weird, and reminds me of laxatives, these bars are delicious!! I had the white chocolate Cherry Chip flavor and omigosh, they taste so good!!! I'm going to buy them by the box next time. They are a little pricey, approx. $2.35 each at Whole Foods but they are worth it for me since they are the ONLY bars I can eat that actually taste good!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Corn Thins - cracker substitute?

Corn thins are a cracker substitute - sort of! They have the taste and texture of rice cakes but they are about a quarter of the thickness, thereby, making them a more viable cracker substitute. They have a pretty mild flavor that won't interfere with any topping. They are certified gluten-free and are high in fiber so they are good for you. Overall, they are pretty good, not as good as a buttery wheat cracker, but much healthier!

Gluten-Free Market!!!

I just heard about this market that is all gluten-free!! It sounds like heaven. I hope to check it out soon!

108 South El Camino Real
San Clemente, CA 92672
(949) 542-4631

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Terra Restaurant in Hillcrest

I have not actually tried this restaurant but I am excited to go there because they feature gluten-free selections on their menu. They are located next to Trader Joe's in Hillcrest. I am supposed to attend a work function there this week so I will definitely review the food soon.

Yummy Pancake Mix

I tried Trader Joe's Gluten Free Pancake Mix for breakfast this morning. The directions call for adding eggs, oil and water to the mix. To reduce the fat content, I used one egg and some nonfat milk and added just enough mix to give the batter a good consistency. I just used some Pan to spray the pan. The pancake was delicious and not at all grainy, which was what I used to get when I used rice flour to make pancakes. These pancakes remind me of what pancakes are supposed to taste like!