Gluten Free Menu Swap- January 28, 2008

menu swap 028 Gluten Free Menu Swap  January 28, 2008
When I first went gluten-free, there was a lot of confusion about which vanilla extracts were in fact gluten-free. My response was to buy a clearly labeled Non-GMO, gluten-free vanilla extract from Whole Foods. However, I wasn’t satisfied with how these vanilla extracts tasted. The allergy-friendly gluten-free vanilla just didn’t scream high-quality to me. And the gluten-free vanilla powdery stuff was completely out of the question. It looked like something you would bring on a space expedition. So I was really happy when that issue was [somewhat] resolved. Most of us have come to agree that grain-based alcohols are safe and therefore, most vanilla extracts should be ok.


Storage: Vanilla beans should be kept in an air-tight container in a dry, dark place. Never keep vanilla beans in the refrigerator because this shortens their shelf life (promotes mold). Vanilla extract should be kept in an air-tight container to prevent loss of flavor and keeps indefinitely.

Selection: Brand of vanilla recommended by foodies is Nielsen Massey Pure Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Extract Gluten-Free Girl mentions this in her post: The Dark-Brown Joys of Vanilla Extract and Joy of Baking mentions it in her Vanilla tutorial. If you are picking vanilla beans, aim for beans that are soft, oily, and have a fragrant vanilla aroma.

Varieties: Bourbon beans, Mexican beans, Tahitian beans (Check out

My Gluten-Free Menu

Monday: Mahi Mahi with Coconut Rice

Tuesday: Gluten Free Goddess’ Chicken Lime Soft Tacos (classic favorite here)

Wednesday: Jaden’s Steamy Kitchen’s Fried Noodles with Garlic Shrimp (first time with this one; see her gluten-free notes)

Thursday: Grand Marnier Chicken with Brown Rice and Green salad

Friday: My Pantry Beef Casserole


Sally’s Gluten Free Menu at Aprovechar- She has some good ideas for making meal-planning seem less overwhelming. She is making a tasty meyer lemon and vanilla bean marmalade this week. Sally will be hosting the swap next week and the ingredient will be turnips.

Melanie’s Gluten Free Menu at The Gluti Girls- She is starting the South Beach diet this week! There is a yummy recipe for Taco soup in her menu post too.

Sea’s Gluten Free Menu at Book of Yum- She has a wonderfully diverse menu planned as always. Her Hot and Sour soup sounds really, really good right now.

Sara’s Gluten Free Menu at Gluten Free Dance- She is also making tacos this week and a Creole Crabmeat Casserole that sounds pretty fantastic.

Carrie’s Gluten-Free Menu at Ginger Lemon Girl- She included a recipe for gluten-free hot chocolate. Yum.

Esther’s Gluten-Free Menu at The Lilac Kitchen- She is working around other allergies these days, but she has some great ideas for getting through the week.

Karen’s Gluten Free Menu at Gluten Free Sox- She is hosting a Super Bowl party this week with a New England theme. What a great idea! She is also planning on making a mushroom lasagna.

Kara’s Gluten Free Menu at Gluten Free in the Greens- Her menu is also impressive. The Potato Chard Gratin sounds great and it sounds like she is trying to make a healthier version to make it even better. She is also undergoing dietary changes and trying to eliminate a lot of the meat in her diet.

Ginger’s Gluten-Free Menu at Fresh Ginger- Her menu is just mouth-watering. Her green chile empanadas would definitely hit the spot!

Monique’s Gluten Free Menu at Gluten Free Pregnancy- She is planning a post for gluten free oatmeal raisin cookies this week.

My Monday Mommy Brag:

Jude parties hard and crashes hard (it took me a minute to find him after he fell asleep in my closet) !

jude 1 27 8 Gluten Free Menu Swap  January 28, 2008judeb 1 27 8 Gluten Free Menu Swap  January 28, 2008

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11 Responses to “Gluten Free Menu Swap- January 28, 2008”

  1. [...] at Gluten Free Mommy is the host for Menu Swap this week.  The ingredient of the week is vanilla.  She has a lot of interesting [...]

  2. That pic of your son sleeping in the closet is so funny. Our third used to fall asleep like that. One time, he fell asleep on the family room floor, then he woke up and walked to the back of the house. I assumed he’d gone to his bed since he was so quiet. Nope, he’d fallen asleep again just short of his goal, right in his doorway. lol.

    Here’s my menu for this week.


  3. Those pictures are just adorable! Your menu sounds yummy as well.

    I admit, I am not not a “foodie” per say, but Iove the aroma and flavor of the Authentic Foods Powdered Vanilla- it seems to work really well in my baking endeavors. I wasn’t sure about it either until I actually used it. I guess I am still a scaredy cat re: alcohol based vanilla- or alcohol or vinegar based anything for that fact. I am soo sensitive it is better to be safe than sorry for me. :)

  4. Sara- Got the menu! Kids do the funniest things. Jude actually wakes up in a better mood after sleeping on my closet floor, so maybe he needs to do it more often. haha

    Karen- I tried the Authentic Foods vanilla and didn’t care for it. Although I have read your review of the vanilla on your blog before and I see your point! I know there are a lot of celiacs who feel the same way! I hear ya about the “safe than sorry” thing. For me, I HATE eating out. And who says you are not a foodie? You have a food review blog ;)

  5. Natalie – here’s my menu for the week. I’m haven’t planned much since my husband will be out of town some, but it’s something.


  6. Yum!! (I meant for your boy, not your menu!!:) Cutie! I love seeing the pics. Menu looks great!!

    I haven’t been on the menu swap; you know it’s not personal, I am trying to spend less time on my computer. I just wanted to remind you why! :)

    have a great day!

  7. Karen- Thanks! My husband doesn’t like mushrooms either ;)

    Slacker Mom- No worries! I understand seasons in life. Right now, I am constantly nursing so I am always on the computer. My husband works at home at night a lot right now too, so my computer time has been super-high lately! But this might change for me too at some point. :)

  8. LOL Natalie!- I guess I do have a food blog, although I am reviewing other people’s creations instead of my own. Blogs like yours give me hope that someday I can be a great gluten free cook and baker “foodie”. I have a lot to learn, it’s a good thing I am patient. :) keep up the great recipes and menus- you do a fabulous job!

  9. I just want to thank you for hosting the menu swaps! It is great for planning and makes me post my photos of what I have been cooking (or drinking) in a timely manner. I love the closet photo!

  10. I love it! (Jude’s pictures of course) Those are both terrific pictures. We have yet to experience the sleeping on the floor, but it’s so cute I hope David will do it.

    Your menu looks yummy. I think we’ll try your coconut rice soon. I did plan a menu this week…it just never made it as far as the computer. Oh well, another time perhaps =)

  11. Ginger- I can’t wait to see some of your dishes come to life to- and I agree, the menu swap keeps me motivated and cooking.

    Mary Frances- Thanks! I am sure David will sleep on the floor, esp. when you are transitioning him into a big bed. Jude has a full size bed and he loves to drive his cars on the flat rails (it used to be his crib). He never did the toddler bed thing, he thought it was uncomfortable. This works better for us anyway. Oh, and the coconut rice is really good. Let me know what you serve it with because I am always looking for ideas.

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