I’m so happy to announce that Season II of Ask The Gluten Free Chef podcast premieres this Friday October 9th. Putting together this season has truly been a labor of love. Episodes in season II are in a one hour long format where I continue to bring you more information on how to live a happy, safe, and healthy gluten free lifestyle. This season I decided to add a revolving panel of guest co-hosts to the mix. In a very conversational and organic style I share hosting duties with people far and near who live with celiac disease and chronic illness. Gaining other perspectives and making positive connections is what it’s all about.

I’m so happy to start the new season with guest co host, Hannah Ross Crane. Hannah is a celiac guru and the Assistant Director of the NYU Law Institute for Executive Education. I won’t spoil all the surprises but Hannah also happens to be a blogger for the Huffington Post. I can’t wait until you hear her story of endurance, validation, and acceptance. To keep you busy in the meantime, check out Hannah’s blogger page here and read her thought provoking think pieces on all things gluten free. Her writing style is gracious, encouraging, and timely for any one dealing with celiac disease and gluten sensitivity.

Photo credit: Ariane Hunter

Intro to Gluten Free Cooking & Baking

Last night I held the first night of my new Intro to Gluten Free Cooking and Baking class in Irodequoit, NY. I was thrilled to be teaching food in a real kitchen with a very intimate group of people. I baked and they watched along as I prepared and taught them the basics of baking gluten free. Last night’s class was the first of a three night series that will happen on Thursday nights on October 15, and 29th. On the menu were my Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookie & Honey Vanilla Granola. Education, cooking, and connecting are my passions and I am thrilled to continue to inspire and inform young and old alike on how simple and easy gluten free living can be. Check out the pictures from last night’s class.



The Celiac Mom’s Guide to Prepping for Back to School, Celiac Style Part III: Snack Attack

10 am. 3pm. 8 pm. A snack attack strikes at those in between times when you just need a little something, and that little something is usually crunchy, salty or sweet, or a little of all three. Kids especially are big on snacks, and when celiac takes gluten out of the picture, the variety of snack choices seems to disappear as well.

I am here to tell you to fear not! because there are loads of snack options for your little ones (and you, too, because who doesn’t like crunchy, salty and sweet?). Get those ziplocks ready to fill. May the name-dropping commence: Continue reading

H.O.P.E| Hold On Pain Ends by Alicia

I’m going to be serious. I don’t like being serious, but this is a serious matter and one I feel very passionately about. September is Suicide Awareness Month. According to the American Association of Suicidology one person in the United States commits suicide every 13 minutes. It’s in the top 10 leading causes of death in this country. That’s NOT okay. And, it’s something no one wants to talk about. It’s not that people want to talk about other leading killers like cancer, but they’re easier to talk about. A disease of the body is something we can all understand, something we can quantify. A disease of the mind is more difficult for people who haven’t experienced it to relate to or empathize with. It’s also more difficult to combat, because it isn’t always easy to spot. It’s often hidden and silent. We as sufferers of auto-immune illnesses can understand that all too well. How many of you have gotten the “you don’t look sick” comment? My guess is that all of you have. But, did you know that celiac disease and major depressive disorder (or clinical depression) and anxiety disorders go hand in hand? Continue reading

Weekend Roundup| Southern Comfort

With summer like temperatures dominating most of September, it has certainly felt like the south these last few weeks. This weekend was no exception. With gorgeous blue skies and the perfect mix of warmth and breeze, this September’s weather has been record breaking as far as Upstate NY is concerned. It was the perfect weekend for a picnic as well as for my second Gluten Free Meet and Mingle Luncheon which went off without a hitch on Saturday. We enjoyed good food, good company and perfect weather. I was glad too, since weekday drama threatened to derail my plans. I am so happy I persevered and weathered the storm of life. Good things come to those who have faith. Check out the photos from our amazing event and if you are in the Rochester area be sure to register for next month’s luncheon. How was your weekend?


Summer Roundup | 2015 Edition

Hello Fall. Farewell Summer. In place of a menu plan this week, I’ve rounded up my summer of 2015 in photos. May through September is a long time. Summer 2015 was a crazy mix of fun, sun, business, work, pleasure, pain, and a whole lot in between. Cheers to an amazing summer. Continue reading

The Celiac Mom’s Guide to Prepping for Back to School, Celiac Style Part II: Rockin’ the Gluten Free Lunchbox

Packing lunches. Two small words that fill parents everywhere with dread. It is not an easy job to fill a lunchbox with healthy food that is fun and appealing to little people. It’s an even tougher job when you can’t just make the obligatory pb&j sandwich, because a lot of the gluten free bread out there? No thanks.

I try to think outside the box, so to speak, when packing my daughter’s gluten free lunches. You have to get creative to keep it fun, fresh and healthy. My approach? Bento. Bento boxes originated in Japan, with lots of small choices in little compartments all packed in a cute little box. Bento boxes are sold everywhere from Target to Pottery Barn Kids. Some popular brands online are PlanetBox and Yumbox. The concept has taken the lunch crowd by storm.

Bento boxes make it easy to throw a little of this and a little of that in the lunchbox. This provides great variety in your gluten free child’s diet, but it also means needing to have a wide variety of choices on hand. There are so many delicious, gluten free products out there, however their steep price tags make it too expensive to experiment and buy out the gluten free aisle. So, I’ll do lots of “name dropping” here so you can buy with confidence that every last crumb will get eaten.

Every lunch box generally contains a main dish, a side item, a fruit/veggie, something crunchy, and a dessert. Pick one from each category and get packin’! Continue reading

Thwart Nature’s Evil Plans…Take Your Zinc | Part II by Alicia

Zinc is a pretty important little mineral. Who doesn’t like to taste things and not be sick? Because Mother Nature is a jerk, it’s almost impossible to get zinc without being very intentional with your diet. You need a measly 11 milligrams per day. It’s not a lot, but most food sources only have small amounts of zinc. Continue reading

Love Your Enemy.

Finding the humanity in people is one of the hardest things to do. Taking a closer look and attempting to understand the reasons behind bitterness, wickedness, jealousy and hate is challenging but not impossible. So often these traits are the symptoms of deeper issues. Brokenness. Insecurity. Pain. Unhappiness with oneself. Displaying understanding and empathy for those of whom you loves comes easy. The challenge is demonstrating these same qualities to persons that cause us harm or injury. Usually people who bully, hurt, or harm others are in more need of understanding and a prayer than retaliation. Stopping, pausing, and thinking about how broken someone has to be to cause deliberate harm to another person for no other reason than to cause frustration and headache is easy to say, but so hard to practice. However, it is necessary if one wishes to keep a peaceful spirit. We can’t control what someone else does to us. But we can control how we respond.

Finding love and forgiveness in your heart for those that wish to inflict harm takes perseverance, endurance, and courage. Love will always win over hate. Fire should not be fought with fire. Fire is fought with love, patience, and understanding. Restraint is needed to Be still and let GOD fight your battles. Adding gasoline to fire can only cause an explosion. Therefore, mindful meditation and prayer for those that bully, slander, and lie is necessary and vital to maintain a peaceful and balanced body, mind, and soul.

Loving our enemies, doing good to those that hurt us, and praying for those that mistreat us demonstrates great strength of character. Turning the other cheek is the ultimate display of bravery.

Letting go and letting GOD is essential. The enemy may oppress but only we can allow them to gain victory over our spirit. Wish them well. Be still and let GOD fight your battles.