Gluten Free

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5 Delicious Deserts: Non Addictive, Gluten Free, White Sugar Free

By |April 16th, 2015|

Why postpone true happiness and radiant health? You you can have your cake and eat it too. Eating delicious desserts without feeding your sugar addiction is easy–it just involved purchasing the right ingredients. Once you taste unprocessed dessert, you won’t look back.

White sugar, white flour, and fats, often contribute to making certain foods highly addictive.  This is why I do not use any of that white stuff in my baking and only use smaller amounts of healthy oils in place of those unhealthy fats.

I can truly say I used to be a “Sugar Addict.” Thankfully, those so-called yummy, sugary treats have no attraction to me anymore. I do not have to control myself. I simply have no interest in them after making a switch to whole foods.

It literally took me years to totally get past my addiction. One of my main strategies was to never keep any “treats” at home. Otherwise I would eat them. The second step I made was creating my own healthy, white-ingredient-free dessert recipes.

These five healthy treats aren’t just non-addictive. They are all extremely tasty, gluten-free, white sugar-free, and white flour-free. They have small amounts of healthy fats and small amounts of healthy sugars.

Millet Pudding. As delicious as it looks.

1. Millet Pudding: Sugarless, Gluten Free

This is a simple and very nourishing alkaline pudding, and it is vegan, too.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cup cooked millet
  • 2/3 cup sultanas
  • 2 cup coconut milk or almond milk
  • 1/3 cup pecans or almonds, left whole
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut (unsweetened)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2/3 tsp light liquid stevia
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • dash of nutmeg
  • dash of cardamom
  • pinch of salt

Directions:

1. Mix all above ingredients together except for the pecans or almonds.
2. Pat in baking dish.
3. Place pecans or almonds on top of mixture.
4. Bake at 350 for 50 min – 1 hour

To read all the health benefits of this alkaline, gluten free grain, click here.

DSC00174

2. Cherry Pecan Chocolate Bar

Chocolate as we know is very addictive.  It is the high amount of sugar and unhealthy oils that cause the trouble. I never buy chocolate bars anymore. I make my own, and they are yummier for me. Try this one.

Ingredients

  • 4 squares (approx 112 gm) unsweetened chocolate*
  • 3 tbsp organic virgin coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp unpasteurized honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon liquid stevia
  • 1/4 cup pecans, roasted and chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried unsweetened cherries chopped in half.

Directions:

1. Dry roast pecans in a toaster oven or in frying pan (stir frequently so they do not burn).
2. Melt chocolate in a double boiler or very carefully in saucepan.
3. Oil with coconut oil, a small pan of approximately 8 inches square.**
4. Evenly sprinkle the cherries and pecans in the pan.
5. When chocolate is melted; remove from heat.
6. Mix in coconut oil and stevia.
7. Then mix in honey.
8. Pour melted chocolate mixture over the cherries and pecans.
9. Let cool in refrigerator or freezer.
10. Once set, cut into squares.
11. Store in covered container in refrigerator or freezer, if desired.

*Not all chocolate comes in the same dimensions. For example:

Organic Camino Chocolate is in a 200 gm package with 36 rectangles.
200 gm divided by 36 = 5.55 gms X 20 rectangles = 111 gms.
What you need to do is use approximately 112 gms.

This recipe is just one of the many recipes in the Healthy Chocolate Project.

Raw Carob Pudding

3. Raw Carob Pudding

Sometimes we need a break from chocolate–even healthy chocolate.  Carob, although it does not really taste like chocolate, fills the chocolate […]

Best Ingredient for Gluten Free Cooking

By |April 4th, 2015|

Arrowroot and kudzu are high quality starches that will add amazing texture and taste to your gluten-free cooking. I’m happy I discovered them in my macrobiotic (grain-based diet) days. I used to bake with cornstarch like most people — which is not a healthy ingredient.

Don’t Use Cornstarch If You Can Help It

Most commercial products and recipes use cornstarch because it is inexpensive and readily available. The problem with cornstarch is:

  • It is often difficult to digest and can irritate the digestive system.
  • Corn is one of the most genetically modified foods.
  • Cornstarch is very highly processed carbohydrate with no protein, vitamins or minerals. It is made from the tiny white endosperm at the center of a corn kernel. The corn kernels are processed utilizing chemicals and high heat to remove outside shells to get it into a fine white powder.

Think about the other white foods like white rice, white flour, and white sugar; they are often highly processed, with little nutrition or health benefits. They are wonderful food staples around the world, providing easy and tasty calories. But, if you’re seeking a diet lower in calories and higher in nutrition, these ingredients are not your best bet.

Read my article on The 9 Dangers of Common Gluten-Free Recipes And Products

Arrowroot and kudzu are produced in a simple, natural process unlike the way cornstarch and potato starch are highly processed.

Raw Arrowroot

Arrowroot — Even Better Than Kudzu
Arrowroot is a fine powder — an odorless, granular starch used in the food industry as thickener and as a stabilizing agent.

I use arrowroot in everything from my puddings and gravies to cakes and cookies because:

  • Arrowroot is closer to a whole food because less processing is involved.
  • Arrowroot is easily digested and even helps settle an upset stomach.
  • Once cooked it is clear, shiny and translucent instead of cloudy.

Arrowroot Nutrition

  • Very low in calories; less than that of potato or yam
  • Contains good levels of B-complex (niacin, thiamin, pyridoxine, pantothenic acid and riboflavin).
  • Contains moderate levels of some minerals (copper, iron, manganese, phosphorous, magnesium, and zinc).
  • Excellent source of potassium (454 mg per 100g or 10% of RDA).

Arrowroot as Medicine

  • Arrowroot got its name because it was originally used by Caribbean Indians to treat the wounds from poison arrows.
  • They grew it for food and for its healing properties as far back as 1600. Later the Europeans learned of this and continued this practice.
  • Historically it was fed to children and people with fragile digestive systems.

Arrowroot is made from the roots of a tropical plant called arrowroot (Maranta arundinacea). The arrowroot plant is a close cousin of the kudzu plant. Both grow naturally in the Southern United States and Asia and are used in similar ways for cooking.

Unprocessed root of kudzu vine.

Kudzu Also Better

Kudzu, also known as kuzu, is made from the root of the kudzu plant that grows wild in the mountains of Japan and in the southern U.S. Kudzu strengthens the digestive tract.

It is native to Japan and China where it has been used for over 2,000 years medicinally and as a starchy food.

Kudzu Nutrition

  • Only 33 calories in 1 tablespoon (0.4 oz) of Kudzu Root Starch, dry.
  • Rich in organic iron, calcium and phosphorus.
  • Has a significantly high flavonoid content.

Kudzu as Medicine
According to research in Beijing, China:

  • Reduces high blood pressure and risk of blood clots.
  • Relieves chronic migraine headaches
  • Eases tension in the shoulders, neck and head
  • Used for more than 1,000 years by Asian herbalists for alcoholism and to curb alcohol cravings.

Macrobiotic founder, […]

Gluten Free and Vegan Cornmeal Pancakes

By |February 19th, 2015|

This recipe is my version of pancakes without the milk or eggs. Good news is that if you are honoring Lent you can still eat them. Whenever I make these pancakes no one seems to notice the lack of those two ingredients.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 3/4 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/4 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/4 cup potato flour
  • 2 tbsp Flax meal
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 5 tsp baking powder
  • 2 1/4 cups water
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil or melted coconut oil

Directions:

1. Mix dry ingredients together.
2. Make a well in the center of dry ingredients.
3. Pour water and oil into center.
4. Mix together with a large wooden spoon.
5. Mix only until moistened – taking care not to over-mix (small lumps are normal).
6. Pour 1/3 to 1/2 cup of the batter into a hot oiled frying pan.
7. Fry on medium heat.
8. Turn when bubbles form on top and brown other side.

Try the Orange Syrup on this Pancakes.

Also:    Honey Syrup

Cardamom/Coconut Rice Pulao

By |September 11th, 2014|

I made this for a potluck birthday party a few years ago; it was a favourite.
I took all of my favourite pulao ideas and put them together into this one recipe and am happy to say it is the best one I have come up with so far!!!!!

This pulao has a unique flavour because of the cardamom and fried cashew and sultanas.  Coconut is added to give a nutty flavour to the pulao.  It is important to use ghee instead of vegetable oil as this also gives it a wonderful flavour.

Ingredients:

1 cup brown Basmati rice
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cardamom seeds (fresh from the pods)
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
4 Tbsp desiccated coconut (unsweetened) or fresh grated coconut
1 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 – 1 tsp cayenne pepper* (optional)
2 Tbsp ghee
3  Tbsp cashews or peanuts
3  Tbsp sultanas or raisins
2 1/4 cups water

Directions:

  1. Wash the rice under flowing water to remove any dust etc.
  2. In a heavy skillet, add 1 Tbsp ghee.
  3. When the ghee becomes hot, add cashews and raisins.
  4. Fry until the cashews are lightly-browned turn.
  5. Remove from the pan and put them on a paper towel so that the ghee is absorbed.
  6. Again, keep the pan on heat, add 1 Tbsp ghee.
  7. When the ghee becomes hot, add mustard seeds.
  8. Then add cinnamon, pepper, cardamom seeds and coconut and fry until the coconut turns golden brown.
  9. Add rice and turmeric, stir-fry for a few minutes.
  10. Add water, salt and mix well.
  11. Bring to the boil and reduce the heat to low.
  12. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook for 50 – 55 minutes until the rice is tender and fluffy.
  13. Remove from heat, transfer to a serving bowl and sprinkle fried cashews and raisins on top and serve hot.

* I never put the pepper in but I know many people like their Indian food spicy.

Millet Porridge – Vegan & Gluten Free

By |July 1st, 2014|

Ingredients:

 1/2 C cooked Millet
2 Tbsps Sultanas
1/2 C Almond Milk
7 Almonds (soaked)
Few Prunes and dried Apricots
1 Tbsp Coconut Oil
1/4 tsp Stevia (liquid)
1/2 – 1 tsp. Cinnamon
Pinch of salt
1 tsp Brown Rice Syrup (optional)

Directions:

  1. The night before: Put all except soaked almonds and rice syrup into a pot.
  2. In the morning: Simmer for 10 minutes.
  3. Pour into a bowl and mix in almonds.
  4. Put syrup on top. Personally I do not need it as the fruit makes it sweet enough.
  5. Now eat and enjoy the dessert breakfast.

Note:  All the tasty recipes at Real Food For Life are vegetarian, gluten-free and white sugar-free.  We invite you to check more of them out by browsing the recipe category section on the right sidebar and above.

I also teach you how to plan and prepare healthy gluten free meals with my 2-5-30 Healthy Diet and Detoxes.

 

Date Walnut Cornmeal Muffins -Gluten free-Vegan

By |June 30th, 2014|

These simple, yummy muffins are full of healthy ingredients.
They are also gluten free.
You will be amazed how sweet they are, since there is no added sugar!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup cornmeal
1 cup brown rice flour
¼ cup soya flour or chickpea flour
¼ cup arrowroot or potato
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
¼ cup oil
½ tsp light stevia (Sunny Dew)
1½ cups almond, rice or cocnut milk
½ lemon juiced
1 tsp lemon rind
¼ cup walnuts, chopped
1 cup dates, chopped

Directions:

  1. Mix dry ingredients together and make a well in the center.
  2. Mix in walnuts and dates
  3. Add oil, milk and lemon juice.
  4. Mix just until all the liquid is absorbed – do not over mix. Mixture may be a bit lumpy which is okay.
  5. Let sit for 5 minutes.
  6. Pour into oiled muffin tins.
  7. Bake in a preheated 400º oven for 20 – 25 minutes.

Note:  All the tasty recipes at Real Food For Life are vegetarian, gluten-free and white sugar-free.  We invite you to check more of them out by browsing the recipe category section on the right sidebar and above.  I teach you how to make healthy desserts like the muffins in my Healthy Baking Class.

I also teach you how to plan and prepare healthy gluten free meals with my 2-5-30 Healthy Diet and Detoxes.

Gomashio Seasoning

By |May 22nd, 2014|

This is a Traditional Japanese Macrobiotic Seasoning that I learned to make in my macrobiotic days in the 70’s.

 Ingredients:

 1 cup raw unhulled Sesame Seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons Himalayan salt or Sea Salt
1 sheet of toasted nori seaweed, torn into pieces

Directions:

  1. Dry roast sesame seeds with salt in a frying pan over medium heat until golden brown.
  2. Let cool.
  3. Add sesame seeds, nori and salt to the grinder. (Traditionally a mortar and pestle is used to lightly grind toasted seeds with, I use a coffee-grinder or now my new magic bullet!)
  4. Gently grind to just crack the seeds leaving the mixture mealy, Do not grind to a powder. I know from experience that it is very easy when using an electrical appliance to do grind it too much.
  5. Store in a jar.

Creamy Chickpea and Rice Pie

By |April 1st, 2014|

Creamy Chickpea Pie Filling

Ingredients:

1 onion, chopped
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. coriander
1/4 tsp. cardamom
1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas
4 Tbsp. Tahini (light)
1/2 tsp Himalayan salt

Directions:

1. Saute onion, cumin, coriander, and cardamom in a little vegetable oil.
2. Add chickpeas, salt and Tahini.
3. Mix together, adding more water if necessary for a creamy sauce.
4. Set aside.
5. Add salt to taste.
6. Pour into Rice Pie Shell.
Bake at 450º for 25 – 35 minutes.

Rice Pie Shell

Ingredients:

1 cup cooked short grain brown rice
2 Tbsp. Chick Pea flour
2 Tbsp Sesame Seeds
1/2 to 2/3 cup water

Directions:

1. Oil pie pan well.
2. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
3. Add a little water to rice and chickpea flour to form a sticky dough-like mixture.
4. Press rice into pan to form a pie shell.
5. Pour in Creamy Chickpea Pie Filling.
6. Bake at 450 F for 25 35 minutes.

This recipe is from a collection of Diana’s favorite gluten free recipes called:  Gluten-Free All Day: Tasty Recipes for Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Why Is A Gluten Free Diet So Expensive…And Fattening?

By |March 6th, 2014|

Do you eat gluten free because you have celiac disease or have gluten sensitivity or perhaps you choose to eat gluten free to be healthier?

If you eat gluten free than like many, you may be stressed by the high cost of gluten free products.

 “It can be twice as expensive to eat gluten-free. Our surveys tell us this is the number-one stressor for celiac patients.” says Alice Bast, president of the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness.

On average, gluten-free products are 242% more expensive than regular products. Canada’s Dalhousie Medical School compared prices of 56 gluten free items with ordinary grocery items containing gluten.

  • The average unit cost of the gluten-free product – $1.71
  • The average unit cost of the gluten containing products – $.61

Examples: Betty Crocker gluten-free chocolate brownie mix costs 38¢ per ounce and regular fudge-brownie mix is 16¢ per ounce. Gluten-free crackers are 467% more than a Ritz for every 100g.

Why do Gluten Free Products Cost More?

  • One reason that gluten free products cost more is that every ingredient must be free from contamination from the field to the processing -to the packaging plant.
  • Manufacturers have costs to implement strict guidelines for certifying and labeling GF.
  • A gluten-free loaf will have over 20 ingredients in its recipe, mostly to compensate for the lack of wheat. These ingredients cost about two to three times that of an equivalent conventional loaf.  – National Association of British and Irish Millers Flour Milling 2012
  • The big money to be made selling gluten free to those who need it or want it may be a main reason.

Big Money to be Made Selling Gluten Free Products!

  • It is estimated that $7 billion will be spent by Americans this year on foods labeled gluten free. – Consumer research firm Mintel.
  • 55% spend 30% or more on their grocery budget for gluten-free foods. (2008 Understanding Gluten-Free Shoppers’ Survey)
  • 57% have tried ten or more new gluten-free products in the last year.
  • Between 2005 and 2010 gluten free products grew by nearly 80 per cent.

With those facts, there is motivation to cash in on this gluten free trend. This is big business for food manufacturers to produce more gluten free products. General Mills now offers more than 300 gluten-free lines including Pillsbury dough.

We Pay For These Products Because We Fear Being Deprived:

No one wants to have to do without their usual wheat toast, or cereal or cookies or sandwich or pie.   Eating wheat 3-5 times a day is not unusual. Eating all that wheat is not healthy for anyone.

A healthy balanced diet consists of a wide range of foods not one food a number of time a times a day.  Dr. William Davis, author of “Wheat Belly” popularized the idea that the current mass-produced wheat causes problems ranging from arthritis to schizophrenia to weight gain.

7 Ways to Save Money Being Gluten Free

  1. Stop Buying Packaged Products – instead of whole grains.
    Some of the poorest populations in the world live quite happily on gluten free  rice and millet. Try other gluten free grains like quinoa and buckwheat.

  2. Make Your Own Flour Mixtures:
    The flours I use in my baking are: brown rice, potato, chick pea and a little arrowroot. I DON’T waste my money buying starches since they are almost like buying sugar (see below)
  3. Eat fresh whole foods. All Fresh fruits, vegetables, […]

Curried Popcorn

By |January 9th, 2014|

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This has become my current favourite popcorn recipe!
I like the curry flavour in my vegetables so I thought why not in popcorn.  It is so yummy that I can easily eat a large bowl full all by my self!

Ingredients:
Popcorn (organic)
Curry Powder
Turmeric
Coconut Oil or Ghee (clarified butter)
Vege salt

Directions:

  1. Make popcorn in preferred method.
  2. In a saucepan put in some coconut oil or ghee.
  3. When hot add curry powder, turmeric and salt.
  4. Heat for only a minute, then remove.
  5. Then sprinkle on popcorn

Note:  This snack is an alternative the typical microwave popcorn.  Butter flavored microwave popcorn is one of the Five Top Foods to Avoid.

Sweet Plum Cake – Vegan Gluten Free

By |December 5th, 2013|

 plum cake 300

I love this healthy gluten free, dairy free and egg free cake. For me it is also important that there are no unhealthy sugars and any healthy sugars be  in small quantities. Being vegan is important to me. This is why I create recipes like the one below.  Enjoy!

Ingredients:

 2 cups fresh prune plums + 1/2 cup sliced plums for top
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup rice syrup
1 tsp stevia
4 Tbsp chick pea flour
1 cup brown rice flour
3/4 cup Potato flour
1/4 cup arrowroot starch
5 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp sea salt
2/3 cup water or 1/2 cup if you like a drier cake.

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375º F.

2. Oil and lightly flour 8” X 8”cake pan.

3. Chop 2 cups of plums into one inch pieces.

4. Sprinkle plums with ginger.

5. Slice 1/2 cup plums into slices to decorate the top of the cake.

6. Blend oil, rice syrup, and water in blender.

7. Mix flours, baking powder and sea salt in a separate bowl.

8. Add chopped plums to dry flour mixture.

9. Pour liquid mixture into dry ingredients.

10. Mix quickly.

11. Immediately pour batter into cake pan.

12. Decorate top of cake with plums.

13. Bake at 375º F. oven for 35 To 40 minutes.

Note: If you are considering going gluten free

  1. Read: Can a Gluten Free Diet Help You Lose Weight?

  2. Listen to a Healthy & Gluten Free Baking Radio Interview with Diana

  3. Learn how to make sinfully delicious gluten free treats and desserts that are still healthy for you. Health GF Baking Training 

  4. Read 11 Gluten Free Grains to learn some of the alternatives and their many benefits.
  5. Check out: Diana’s Gluten Free Recipes Make sure you are subscribed to the newsletters for the latest recipes.
  6. Consider doing one of my Healthy Online Courses. All of the recipes for the courses are gluten free.

Can a Gluten Free Diet Help You Lose Weight?

By |September 14th, 2013|

Celebrities world wide are raving about weight loss benefits of gluten free, but does it really work?

Oprah Winfrey, Miley Cyrus and diagnosed celiac Elisabeth Hasselbeck all said they lost weight going gluten free. Victoria Beckham, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jenny McCarthy, Kim Kardashian and Emmy Rossum have also joined the crowd.

“Everyone should try no gluten for a week! The change in your skin, (physical) and mental health is amazing! U won’t go back!” tweeted Miley Cyrus.

BUT….. there is no real research validating  that people will lose weight eating gluten free. In fact there are studies showing  going gluten free has no effect on weight loss.

Mayo Clinic’s gluten expert, Joseph Murray MD says there is no evidence that a gluten free diet will affect weight loss.  The study conducted on celiac patients on a gluten free diet found some gained weight, some lost weight, and some did not change. AM J CLIN NUTR 79: 669, 2004 SOURCE: NUTRITION ACTION. JAN/FEB 2013. GUT MYTHS

BUT …… what I have seen and what our testing shows is that most people are not doing well with gluten in their diet and are sensitive to gluten.

Why are so many gluten sensitive?

Gluten protein is difficult for many people to digest, often passing through the stomach undigested.  This undigested gluten then enters the small intestine and  irritates the intestines wall, causing inflammation and other problems.  Irritated intestines will leak undigested foods and toxins into the blood and lymph on the outside of the intestinal wall.

 

Fact: 3 million people in the United States (adults and children) have celiac disease. – U.S. National Institute of Health estimates. There is no treatment for celiac disease. The only thing to do is a gluten-free diet which eliminates most of the symptoms. Goldie Hawn and Juliette Lewis are just a few celebrities who have Celiac’s disease.

Going gluten-free isn’t easy.  Gluten is a protein found in many foods not just in wheat products, it is in other grains, beers, imitation meats and even things like soy sauce, pickles and hot dogs.

gluten free decision

Why is it that many people lose weight going gluten free?

They eat less starchy foods that are full of gluten.  All that bread, pasta, pizza, bagels, muffins, cakes and many snack foods do not work for a gluten free diet.  Guess what?  They lose weight. Anyone would lose weight eliminating all those carbohydrates and unhealthy foods.

So what do they eat?  They eat more veggies and lean meat, which may also be responsible for the weight loss.

 Why is it that many people GAIN WEIGHT going gluten free?

Answer: They start buying  gluten free substitutes.

BUT…. those gluten free breads, cookies, cakes and cereals are usually higher in calories than the wheat based products.  They are filled with starchy ingredients such as tapioca starch, potato starch, or corn starch and even lots of sugar to make them taste good.

Some  smart innovative people make their own gluten free substitutes.

Unfortunately….. most of the gluten free recipe books and the ones online have the same problem.  They are full of starch and even sugar!

Store bought, and home-made gluten free goodies taste so good that it is easy to eat lots and lots. There are so many other Dangers of Common Gluten Free Products.

Stop buying your gluten free products at supermarkets or even health food stores and making them with those unhealthy starches.

Make your own food with whole grains. Ok, that is not easy because as I said most gluten recipes have 30% to 70% starch!  I have spent years creating healthy gluten free […]