Adlai Stewed in Coconut and Curry

Adlai Stewed in Coconut and Curry

When your grain options are limited due to gluten sensitivity (goodbye, wheat, barley,  rye and all of their forms), what is there left to eat? Still a lot, if you are really looking, but we have to gain where we have lost, don’t we? Adlai or also known as Job’s tears or pearl barley (because of it’s nice pearly shape) is a gluten-free grain you should add to your shopping list.  It is a family of grasses where wheat and rice also come from but other than being gluten-free, it is also low in the glycemic index, so, better for your blood sugar than white rice.It also has a nice texture that is slightly chewy yet firm and al-dente to the bite–like rice shaped pasta grains.

How do you cook them? You can  try this recipe right here!  You can also add it to your salads, soup  or stews. 🙂 Let’s get started!

INGREDIENTS

3 cups or 15 oz cooked Adlai grains
1 coconut milk from 1 medium sized coconut grated and expeller-pressed)
2 small garlic cloves, chopped
3 medium shallots, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 chile (siling labuyo), de-stemmed, sliced and seeded
2 1/2 teaspoons fine salt
1 tsp curry powder
5 cups water

DIRECTIONS

Start by sauteing the onion until fragrant. Add the garlic, shallots and chile. Saute for another 3 minutes. Add the curry powder and then add the coconut milk. Simmer for 2 minutes and add adlai grains to the pot. Continue to simmer on low heat until tender, around 30 to 40 minutes.

You can choose to soak the adlai grains for at least half an hour before you start cooking to speed up the process.  Once Adlai is tender, that’s it! Add some more sliced chiles on top or toasted coconut to add more interesting twist and crunch to the dish.

Enjoy with a side of meat or on it’s own as a nice vegan dish!

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Sugar-free & Gluten-free Ideas for Halloween!

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In our diet, it’s not always just gluten we’re worried about, right? On Halloween, along with our concern for gluten, we also have  just as important, if not much more pressing health concern during this time of the year: sugar.

Parents out there, tempting as it may be to let loose a bit and let your kids go with all the rainbow colors of candy, we must remember that too much sugar has actual consequences to a child’s health.

It is not just the sugar rush that we’re talking about. Sugar has a much more negative effect on the body that is important for us to know.

image4Dental decay is an obvious one. Sugar is known to speed up breakdown of teeth as it fuels the bad bacteria in the mouth. Though younger kids naturally lose their baby teeth, it is important to take care of them as you would permanent ones as the bacteria on the surface of baby teeth can attack the healthy ones still under the gum surface, which can adversely affect their growth by the time they’re ready to come out.

Study also finds sugar lowers the immune system to up to five hours after consumption. Ever notice that close to midnight or when you’ve been up all night, eating sweets has the effect of making your throat scratchy and making you feel like you’re coming down with something? That’s because sugar curbs immune system cells that attack bad bacteria in our bodies.

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Sugar as fructose  and glucose that are in abundance in Halloween candy also has the effect of make one feel famished. Munching on sweets makes your brain resist leptin, which is the protein that help signal the body that it is full. Anytime sweets are introduced in the diet, it makes it easier to eat too much. Partnered with the fact that sugar is highly addictive, it can lead to complications and diseases such as obesity and diabetes. Though Halloween is just one night a year, letting kids loose on sugar, and having candy in the cookie jar for weeks after, can introduce kids to sugar eating habits and that would be extremely harmful for them in the long run.

Here are a few tips to make this Halloween a little less about the sugar and a bit more about the fun:

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Consider giving out inedible treats like Halloween accessories like glow sticks, colorful bracelets, that they can have fun with while out in the streets at night. Just remember not to give out things that little kids can choke on. You don’t have to worry about  sugar here, and gluten, even.

 

 

Have the tradition of a contest of who can bring home the most candy. That way, kids will have the motivation not to eat any of the candy until they get home, so that you may get a handle on what and how much sweets your kids actually consume.

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Though a bit more out of the way, if you are visiting houses of people you actually know, like friends or relatives, have a deal with them to give out healthier and sugar-free (and gluten-free!) treats to your kids, or prepare something you yourself approve of, and hand them out to house owners before you set out for the night with your kids. It can just be between adults.

Remember that sweets and edibles during Halloween can just be a portion of the fun. Make other fun highlights such as creating costumes, decorating, and storytelling with your kids, that will focus more on the activities rather than the sweets.

Remember, with your kids health on the line it pays to keep the effort to be healthy even on Halloween. 🙂

Mother and Daughter Painting a Pumpkin

 

References:

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Albert Sanchez, J. L. Reeser, H. S. Lau, P. Y. Yahiku, R. E. Willard, P. J. McMillan, S. Y. Cho, A. R. Magie, and U. D. Register. – Role of sugars in human neutrophilic phagocytosis. – The American Society for Clinical Nutrition, Inc. 1973., Copyright © 1973,http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/26/11/1180.abstract\

The Skimy on Obesity – UCTV Prime http://www.uctv.tv/search-details.aspx?showID=23717

 

Quick & Easy Breakfast Ideas

Let’s face it: most of us hardly ever have time for a proper meal in the morning. Whether it is to squeeze in a few extra minutes of shuteye before heading off to our day, or our to-do lists are simply too long  to make room for a pause in the morning. So, we racked up a few practical ideas here that you can try as quick breakfast options sans the need to deal with your gluten allergy, or celiac disease symptoms. It’s important to keep your energy high first thing in the morning to get things done, don’t you agree? And gluten should be one less thing to worry about at this most important meal of the day.

Eggs

gluten free breakfast eggs with asparagus

Sunny side up, scrambled, or made into a nice omelette, you cannot go wrong with this breakfast item. You can mix in your selection of veggies, add basic spices and herbs and you can have a filling meal in a matter of minutes. A quick trick is to boil a couple of eggs, peel them, dice and mix in with tomatoes, asparagus, a pinch of salt and pepper, and you’re good to go. Healthy, quick, and hassle-free.

Fruits

gluten free breakfast fruits

This seems like a no-brainer but if your time is scarce, you can forget a basic gluten-free item like this. Ready to eat fruits are convenient, and the quickest of quick meals. Make a berries mix, or grab a convenient apple, or a couple of bananas, or dalandan (they’re one of the remaining cheap ones you can find around street markets or groceries around Metro Manila), before going out to run your errands. If you’re really pressed for time, you can finish these while on a drive, or at your desk at work.

Gluten-free pancakes and waffles

gluten free pancakes with raspberries

This is great if you have gluten-free flour lying around. If not, you can also do mashed banana, mixed with gluten-free oat flour, and eggs as replacement. Fry these in a bit of oil, add some berries, or pour into your waffle maker and finish with syrup. You can even make a sandwich out of these with nice spread or fruit filling. Pack them in sandwich bags and you’re done!

Gluten Free Sandwich or Toast

gluten free sandwich

Gluten-free breads are now thankfully easier to come by. Drop by your healthy food store or look for gluten-free breads online. We have a selection for you at GERALD.ph and you can get them home delivered. If you’re serious about eliminating gluten,  this should already be a staple item in your pantry.  Spread a nice jelly filling, peanut or other nut butters, or chocolate spreads. 

Why not try these to rev up your day unglutened? Let us know how it works out! 🙂

Gluten-Free Cauliflower Rice

Here is an excellent gluten-free version of our favorite cauliflower rice recipe! If you are also worried about calories, aside from gluten, this is a great meal substitute for your usual gluten-free pasta or rice.  Excellent to pair with meat or seafood. It is a staple for those on a keto diet, but just as excellent if you also can’t have gluten. You can also try it without the egg or meat for a vegan healthy dish! Ready? Let’s get cooking!

INGREDIENTS

2 packs of Cauliflower

1 medium-sized carrot, shredded

1 tsp garlic, minced

1 bunch of spring onions, chopped

2 chicken breasts (optional)

salt & pepper to taste

2 tbsp. sesame oil

1 egg (optional)

2 to 3 tbsp gluten-free seasoning

6 to 10 pieces of broccoli florets

3/4 cup frozen peas

 

DIRECTIONS

Chop cauliflower finely using knife or use a food processor to achieve rice-size pieces.

Season the chicken and fry until cooked through (15 to 20 minutes cooking time.) Let cool, and shred it using a fork or cut into small cubes.

In the same pan, sauté  garlic, and then add the cauliflower. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes on medium heat, making sure to mix to avoid burning. Scramble egg in by directly breaking egg into the pan and mixing.

Mix in the carrots, broccoli, chicken, peas, and spring onions mixing continuously. Cook for about 5 more minutes or until the veggies are soft enough to your liking. Add the gluten free seasoning and sesame oil. Add slices of chili if you want your rice with a bit of a kick. Plate and serve with your favorite side of gluten-free seasoned meat or seafood.

Enjoy!

 

Quick Pasta with Creamy Tomato Sauce

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We’ve got another quick and delicious gluten-free pasta recipe for you. This is great for when time is not your friend, since it only takes minutes to prepare! Using gluten-free canned ready meals like some of the gluten-free items of Amy’s brand of organic food, cuts your meal prep time in half. Try this for your lunch this weekend! Definitely, yummy!

INGREDIENTS

1 can of Amy’s Gluten-Free Tomato Bisque

1 pound dried  Gluten-free Pasta (Fusilli, or Penne should work nicely)

4 tbsp salted butter

3 tbsp gluten-free flour

2 cups whole milk

1 cup shredded cheddar

½ pound sliced button mushrooms

3 medium sliced shallots,

A few stems of fresh thyme, washed and dried

Olive oil

Salt & pepper

DIRECTIONS

Prepare gluten-free pasta as instructed in the pack. While boiling, move on to prepare the sauce.

In a sauce pan, melt butter in low heat and slowly whisk in the flour, and then the milk a little at a time, until fully combined. Adjust heat to medium to simmer, making sure to keep an eye on the mixture to avoid burning, whisking continuously.

Empty the can of gluten-free tomato bisque soup in the sauce pan, and let simmer. Add the cheddar, salt and pepper, and set aside after 1 minute. Cheddar is a gluten-free cheese, lucky us! Only, be careful to use real cheddar and not processed cheddar to avoid any additives that can contain gluten.

In another pan, sauté  shallots until translucent, and then add the mushrooms. You can do a few pieces of mushroom at a time so they have enough space in the pan to get sufficiently browned. You’ll get much more flavor in the dish, this way. Add salt and pepper to your liking.

When the pasta is al dente. Mix in theother ingredients: tomato sauce mixture, shallots and mushrooms. On medium heat, allow to simmer to let the water evaporate, leaving you just enough liquid so that your pasta is creamy but no longer runny.

Serve and enjoy!

 

Recipe from Amy’s, adapted and made gluten-free. 

Fight Hunger Pangs Safely with Gluten Free To-Go Meals

One of the more challenging things to confront when dealing with food intolerance and sensitivities are the moments when your caught unprepared hungry. (You know that feeling when you just have to eat something or you’ll pass out?) This occurrence is pretty common and sad to say, this is also when we’re more susceptible to ingesting gluten, because there simply isn’t time to be picky!

Avoiding this can be done with sufficient meal planning, and always having your go-to food item in your fridge, or in your bag, prepared wherever you may be. Here are some terrific ideas you can try so that the next time your stomach grumbles, you’re covered.

  1. Food Wraps

This is terrifically easy to make in advance. Make 4 to 5 wraps, put them in a lunch pack, or a zip lock bag, and save them in your fridge for later.  Lettuce wraps, with seasoned and sauteed meat, and seafood, with a little gluten-free dressing, is a convenient option.

gluten free wrap
Image: EatingWell.com

 

Here’s a great recipe from Eating Well that you can try out:  Gluten-Free Peanut-Chicken Cabbage Wraps.

  1. Sandwiches

Gluten-free sliced bread is heaven sent for these food grubbing moments. If you have gluten-free spreads on hand, just slather it on your bread and you’re good to go. There are a lot of excellent gluten-free spreads options around, more common are are peanut butter, gluten-free chocolate spreads.

gluten free sandwiches

A great selection of gluten-free breads and spreads ise available here.

 

  1. Gluten-free bite-sized cookies and muffins

glutenfree muffins

Bite-sized snacks are great to take with you wherever you go. You don’t have to worry about them spoiling even days at a time in your bag. Put a jar of cookies on your desk at work, or a bag of muffins in your gym bag. Rice cakes or breads made with almond flour or sorghum flour instead of wheat are great. Delicious for nibbling, and guaranteed won’t make you sick because they are already tried and tested.

  1. Naturally Gluten-free snacks

If you want to minimize processed food, it is a smart thing to go with naturally gluten-free food so that you also don’t consume way more sugar, salt or additives that aren’t really necessary, just to address your hunger pangs. Have a piece of fruit handy in your bag, those that pack easily in your bag like an orange of a piece of apple. Try also bags of unseasoned nuts or seeds.

apple and orange gluten free snacks

  1. Meal Plan

If you know exactly what you are having daily for the next few days, and already have them prepared during the weekend, then you can definitely minimize the risk of untimely hunger. Having complete sets of meals for the day already planned out: breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks in between, will make sure you’re complete satiated for the rest of the day.

The Celiac Disease Foundation has on their site a 7-day gluten-free meal plan that you can use as guide for your own planning.

Excellent! So next time you are feeling hungry, save yourself from another episode of enduring effects of gluten ingestion.

Was this list helpful? If you have your own suggestion from experience of how to safely coast through the day gluten-free, give us a shout out in the comments! 🙂 Have a great weekend, everyone! 

Cholesterol-Free Bolognese

SPAGHETTI-BOLOGNESE-2We’ve heard about Quorn TM, an excellent meat-free protein alternative for vegetarians, and vegans. It tastes just like meat and with it you can make practically any dish that usually comes with meat, but without the cholesterol.  But did you know that it’s also a great ingredient if you are going gluten-free? It’s made of Mycoprotein (part of the fungi family), that is a more sustainable and it only has 2% saturated fat, and it contains no gluten. Here’s a fantastic recipe to try that you can share with your whole family, if you are watching your gluten intake.

INGREDIENTS

200g Quorn TM Meat-Free Grounds
2 tbsp Olive Oil
1 piece Onion, minced
2 cloves Garlic, crushed
200g Mushrooms Porcini
or Chanterelle, diced
1 tbsp Tomato Paste
1 tbsp Tomato Ketchup
400ml Tomato Basil Sauce or crushed tomatoes
1 tbsp Vegetarian Worcestershire Sauce
1 piece Vegetable Bouillon Cube, dissolved in 150ml hot water
1 tsp Dried Oregano
Salt and pepper to taste
300g Spaghetti, cooked
Hard cheese (Parmesan or Grana padano)

DIRECTIONS

In a pan, saute the onions over medium heat until translucent. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, and then add the mushrooms. Cook for another 2-3 minutes. Turn up the heat to high and add the Quorn Grounds, tomato paste, ketchup, tomato sauce, worcestershire sauce, vegetable stock, and Oregano, and season with salt and pepper to your liking. Stir to combine well, cover and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes.

Pour sauce over pasta and serve with grated Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!