Unwrapped is Now Accidentally Gluten-Free!

Treatment for my thyroid is still going remarkably well!  Today marks one week since I started my treatment, and I have seen a full turnaround so far.  In fact, the very next day I was fully of energy and my body temperature was up!  Since that first day, I have lost about six of the alarming ten pounds I gained in the last month of thyroid hell.  My body temperature hasn’t gone below 98.0, though it hovers at 98.8 (up by about 1.5 degrees!), and the swelling in my face is completely gone.  Whew.  On my way to normal and so quickly!   Never question what a naturopath can do—these improvements are entirely without lifelong medications like Cytomel and Thyroxin.

This blog is now—unexpectedly—a gluten-free blog.  Just in case you missed it, I was recently diagnosed with celiac disease, and the only known treatment is to avoid gluten for the rest of my life.  Every now and then I think of something I really love that I will never eat again, but for the most part the future looks pretty darn bright.  I mean, pretty much everything I cook is gluten-free, so mostly the change will be to my baked goods.  My goal is to be completely sustained by local organic produce anyway, so it’s not as though this diagnosis came in the middle of a fast-food addiction.  And bodybuilding taught me how to carry meals with me and adapt recipes to meet my nutritional needs—this is nothing compared to a bodybuilding diet!  In fact, as I think back on it, it pretty much was a gluten-free diet.  Chicken, brown rice or sweet potato, and veggies, no condiments…maybe I was onto something.

If you are gluten-free, then I suspect you’ve been doing this a lot longer than I have.  So please bear with my rookie attempts at baking.  Try not to giggle as I get excited about some new product you’ve known about for years.  But also keep in mind that I did not bake from mixes before, and I have no intention of using them now, so we might just learn something together as I try to figure this out.  If you’re not gluten-free, don’t go away just yet!  I consider a recipe successful only when it passes my six-year-old daughter’s taste test, so odds are pretty good that you can still enjoy my recipes.

As an amusing side-note, I want to point out a recent observation I had while at the grocery store yesterday.  Despite the fact that I’m not terribly limited by this change to gluten-free living, suddenly I’m fascinated by any product that is gluten-free certified, even if it’s not something I would have normally eaten.  Such as crackers.  I purchased a box of gluten-free crackers just because I was so excited to see them.  What the hell, I don’t even EAT crackers!  I don’t even buy things in boxes!  But they are now sitting on my pantry shelf like a trophy.  And that’s not all.  Gigi’s cupcakes are gluten-free on Wednesday, and you’d have thought I was waiting on the arrival of Christmas, the way I was counting down the days until I could buy a cupcake!  What’s wrong with me?!  And then I realized that perhaps this is why junk food packaged in small portions, such as 100-calorie snack packs, are so popular: the very notion that one may be deprived in any way seems to jumpstart our inner need to hoard for the impending winter.  But gosh how embarrassing to now be one of the hoarders!  

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Tonight’s dinner was something we would have eaten anyway.  In fact, I had planned to make it before I found out I couldn’t eat gluten!  And while dinner was cooking I made my first attempt at gluten-free blueberry muffins that even passed the kid taste-test!  (I’ll post that recipe in the next one).

Dinner:  vegetable frittata with white cheddar grits

A frittata is probably the simplest quick fix there is!  It’s basically a quiche without a crust.  If you don’t like or can’t eat eggs, this is not for you.  For everyone else, you’ve GOT to add this to your go-to meal list.  It’s high in protein and the fat content can be adjusted to suit your needs.  For instance, someone on a low-carb diet might take full advantage of the egg yolks to keep the calories up, while someone trying to keep the fat down can easily reduce the yolks and add a few extra whites.  You can put anything in it, and it’s a one-dish meal that you can even make ahead and bake when needed.  Some people even eat it cold!  And, as I say about all of my recipes, you can’t mess this up!  I’ll tell you how I made mine tonight, but keep in mind that this recipe is easily adaptable and you should enjoy experimenting on your own. 

Frittata:

8 eggs
½ cup milk
½ cup sharp cheddar cheese
1 green bell pepper (chopped)
1 red bell pepper  (chopped)
1 garlic clove, pressed
1 tsp onion powder  (Mike hates onions, or I’d have used a fresh one instead!)
1/2 (ish) tsp cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste

Whisk the eggs and milk together until it becomes a smooth mixture; add the rest of the ingredients.  Pour into a greased glass baking dish.  Bake at 400 for 30 minutes, or until it’s lightly browned and a fork inserted into the middle comes out clean.

White Cheddar Grits:

2 ½ cup water
½ cup uncooked grits (not instant! And if you’re GF, use grits that you’re confident              are GF, as not all are)
½ cup sharp cheddar cheese
2 tbsp butter (trust me, I find it necessary here.  Nothing worse than grits stuck to your pan)
½ tsp cayenne pepper
salt/pepper

Bring water to a boil; add butter and grits.  Turn heat to “low” and cover for 12 minutes.  Add cheese, salt, pepper, and cayenne and stir.  Remove from heat and cover until you’re ready to serve.

 

 

 

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2 thoughts on “Unwrapped is Now Accidentally Gluten-Free!

  1. I am the same way with GF certified products! Haha! I am officially starting on Monday and yesterday while grocery shopping I was fascinated with all these products that I never paid attention to before. I do not have celiac (we will see after the tests) but my endo and nutritionist have recommended that I go on a GF diet to help with my hypothyroidism. But I love that there is a more mature rookie in blogland that I can follow!

  2. Hi,

    A feeling of deprivation can bring about hoarding, even crackers. I have been gluten-free, at least trying to be, for over three years. It sounds as though you have a jump on most beginners. Good for you. There is lots of information out there, which is great. I was at the local food co-op and they had little stickers with the words gluten free underneath all the gluten free foods they sold and I got tears in my eyes. It was lovely to see.

    Good and healing thoughts to you.

    Kate

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