Saturday, August 21, 2010

7 Best Basics- Gluten Free Starter Pantry Items

Stock your pantry with these basic items that can transform into a number of dishes. These Best Basics are the best tasting Gluten Free foods to help ease your transition to living Gluten Free.

1- Udi's Bread (White or Whole Grain)-
If you've just recently been diagnosed with Celiac, you don't know how truly lucky you are that there is now great tasting gluten free bread available. Ten to fifteen years ago there were very few options and tough crumbly rice cakes for sandwich bread. This is a must have item and keeps very well in the freezer. Zap it in the microwave for 10 secs then flip and another 10 secs. (For two slices I do 20-25 secs, flip and 20-25 secs more.) It is soft, fluffy, chewy and delicious.

2- Tinkyada Pasta-
This pasta has great texture and flavor. Though it can be cooked longer than corn pasta, it tastes best when you take it off the heat a little more on the al dente side (translation: take it off the heat and strain it when it is still just a bit under cooked.) It cooks up nicely and it is so good even the non-gluten free eaters in my home eat this willingly. It comes in a variety of shapes, including noodles for lasagna3- Health Valley Cream of Chicken Soup-
Many quick and easy meals/casseroles call for Cream of Chicken soup (which contains plenty of gluten) so keep this on hand. Something to consider is that this soup is not as thick as the condensed even the non-condensed Campbell's Cream of Chicken soup so be sure to either add less moisture in the other ingredients or mix in a half bar of cream cheese so give it more fullness.

4- Authentic Foods Gluten Free Flour Mixture-
Unless you are big into cooking from scratch and have lots of space for 5 gal. food storage buckets, this is a great go-to flour mix. It is created from a variety of flours and condtioners to help it react closer to tradional All Purpose flour. Add this in cup for cup for traditional flour for your favorite recipes. Try out the Biscuit recipe and replace this flour for the GF Flour and Cornstarch.

5- Udi's Pizza Crusts-
Keep these pizza crusts in your freezer for those nights your craving pizza. If you are all out of pizza sauce and mozzerella, top with some olive oil or butter, italian seasonings, garlic powder, salt and parmesean cheese, bake for 8-10 mins. and you will have some great bread sticks.
Gluten Free BBQ Chicken Pizza- Use BBQ sauce in place of traditional marinara sauce. Top with chicken (canned or other) and cheese, bake and enjoy.

6- Gluten Freeda Cookie Dough-
This frozen cookie dough is a great go to item. It makes it nice if you are the only GF person in your home, though you might find it disappearing because even Non-GFs will be wanting a bite.
7- Kinnikinnick Pancake&Waffle Mix-
Keep this mix on your shelves and you will not be missing a trip to IHOP. The pancakes come out soft and delicious. There is no worries of dry, crumbly cakes because this mix provides a great texture to both waffles and pancakes.

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