Lauren’s Favorites

Season’s Greetings on Christmas Eve!

New Fantastic Food:

I found a fabulous new line of nut cheezes that are made from cashews and coconut oil! I was so delighted to find vegan cheeses that have healthy, familiar ingredients! I have tried the shredded Mozzarella, Cheddar and Pepper Jack and they have worked very well in my recipes including: Quiche, French Onion Soup, Enchiladas, Lasagna, Pizza, Grilled Cheeze on SRSLY Sourdough and much more. They have hard and soft cheeses in a variety of  fabulous flavors.

Parmela Cashew Cheeze-Our nut milk cheeses are made using traditional cheese making techniques.  Rich nut milks made from blending cashews and almonds with filtered water form the base.  These are much thicker than the nut milks you would drink, and amazingly have more flavor potential than dairy milks.

It took over 2 years and 2,000 iterations to get the cultures to grow properly in the thick cashew milks and unlock true cheese flavors for the Creamy Treenut Cheese.  In crafting our new aged cheeses we up over 4000 iterations of cultures grown.

The nutmilk cheeses can be found in Whole Foods, New Leaf Markets and other natural food stores or ordered directly  http://www.parmelacreamery.com 

 

SRSL Bread-Gluten-free, Dairy-free San Francisco Sourdough Bread and Rolls! 

SRSLY Bread

http://www.breadsrsly.com

OMG, I thought I’d never be able to eat Sourdough again…until now! I did the happy dance when I found this amazing bread. I am a traditionalist so I like the classic best, but the seeded is very good and my husband loves the Kale(me too). The sandwich rolls are made out of just Sorghum flour so its great for people who have multiple grain sensitivities. She also makes a huge Pullman Loaf that you can special order!

WHY SOURDOUGH?

Bread SRSLY is committed to making nourishing bread. Each loaf is leavened with wild yeast, cultivated from the air and grain. Unlike commercial yeast, wild yeast helps to break down the grains, making them easier to digest, and adding a pleasant tang that we call sourdough.

WHY SERIOUSLY?

We created our bread only after months of research, applying traditional sourdough techniques to our gluten-free recipes. We learned that good bread takes its time to rise. Each Bread SRSLY loaf rises for more than 12 hours, making it SERIOUSLY good for you. In addition to being gluten-free, all Bread SRSLY products are free of dairy, egg, soy, nut, potato, tapioca, and garbanzo.

Available at Health Food Stores including New Leaf Market, Staff of Life, Bi-Rite Markets or Order at: http://bread-srsly.myshopify.com

 

Want to bake your own Bread?

Manini’s Bread Mix & Fresh Pasta

These pastas and breads are so nutritious and have great texture! I’ve enjoyed Manini’s Spaghetti, Lemon-Thyme Linguine and Lasagna Noodles(not the ravioli b/c they contain diary) and bread mixes which are easy and nutritious. Even my Italian friends are now loving this pasta!

At the heart of our commitment to quality is our dedication to making all of our fresh pastas, breads & bakery products and flours from naturally Gluten Free Ancient Grains. Our Ancient Grains include Amaranth, Teff, Sorghum, and Millet, plants that are essentially unchanged from hundreds of years ago. The result is a nutritious, fiber-rich, great-textured food that is delicious and superior in taste, texture and nutrition to the vast majority of typical rice and corn based Gluten Free foods.

http://www.maninis.com

Want less carbs and more protein in your pasta go for: Tolerant Red Lentil or Black Bean Pasta which have great texture and tons of protein and nutrition! Available at Health food Stores and online.

Tolerant Pasta

Sonoma Pasta SauceSonoma Mushroom Pasta Sauce. I had to stop eating tomatoes due to arthritis and was so happy to find this tomato-free sauce! They have many flavors, but not all are dairy-free. I do still make my own with wild mushrooms and sherry, but nice to have a jar in the pantry in a pinch. Available at Health food Stores and online.

 

Paleo-Cake-Therapy-Paleo-Chocolate-Cake-Mix.jpg

Cake Therapy  Paleo Cake Mix: offers gluten free and paleo baking mixes, made from quality natural ingredients, without preservatives or additives. Cake Therapy’s products are always free of gluten, dairy, soy and corn, with grain free options.

Paleo Chocolate Cake Mix Ingredients: Organic coconut flour, arrowroot, almond meal, organic coconut sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla powder, salt, baking soda, baking powder.

I’ve tried all three flavors: chocolate, vanilla and spice, and love them all! They make a moist and tasty cake or cupcakes. I used my Chocolate Ganache Frosting  with Lily’s Stevia Sweetened Chocolate Chips and Cashew Cream Frosting with them. They have recipes and adaptations on their website too! I used the Spice Cake Mix to make a Carrot Cake and it was so delicious.

Teas to go with your dessert or just enjoy anytime:

Art of Tea: Chocolate Mint Tea which is so rich and tasty it does not need anything else. Great way to avoid sweets, drink this tea instead!  www.artoftea.com 

Numi Turmeric Teas are anti-inflammatory and very tasty especially when I add some local raw honey, ginger and homemade cashew milk! Available at health food stores or http://www.Numitea.com

Steven Smith Lord Bergamot Earl Grey Tea

A few other goodies I’ve fallen in love with this year:

Lily’s Fair Trade Stevia Sweetened Chocolate Chips

We love premium dark chocolate. We don’t like sugar. The addition of stevia to premium dark chocolate is a perfect fit. It makes our favorite food even better. Click to learn more about why we love stevia.http://lilyssweets.com

 

 

Chai-I

Vixen Kitchen Premium Vegan Gelato!  So creamy and delicious you will think you are in Italy!  The first time I tasted this luscious Gelato I was in San Francisco on a cold windy day, but had to have it as my teeth chattered! OMG, I was in Heaven and forgot about the cold the first lick! I love that they sweeten with real maple syrup and use cashews as the base! Again, nutritious and delicious and guilt-free! It is expensive b/c they use the highest quality ingredients and it is worth it! Available at health food stores, including Staff of Life. Flavors: Chocolate, Vanilla, Chai, Coffee, Mint,Blueberry.  http://vixenkitchen.co

Xyloburst Chewing Gum, stays soft, sweetened with xylitol which is great for teeth and tastes good! Available at health food stores,  iherb.com and Amazon.com

My new favorite website to buy all the aforementioned goodies and many more at a 25%-75% discount/usually 25% is at http://www.ThriveMarket.com

 

Kitchen Tools:

  • Kitchen Aid 7 Quart Mixer is the largest capacity home mixer and I love my new one in Candy Apple Red! I also bought the:
  • Spiralizer Attachment that also slices and peels fruit and vegetables!

Body Care Products: Many skincare products contain gluten and dairy which go into your bloodstream within 30 seconds! Yes, it will cause you just as much trouble as eating it!

  • Nubian Heritage Soaps and Lotions
  • Evoli Body Butter & Lip Balm, made from all organic healthy oils
  • Zoya Nail Polish, free of formaldehyde and other bad chemicals available at Whole Foods
  • DoTerra essential oils: I do not travel without the OnGuard and put it on my feet every night! DoTerra.com
  • For the Bathroom: Poo Pourri toilet spray. This is so Brilliant! You spray your favorite essential oil based Poo Pourri into the toilet before you go and it acts as a barrier to help keep your bathroom smelling good! It really works, honest! I keep one in my purse and in our bathroom.

Healthcare/Natural Medicine:

  • Alpha CF Homeopathic liquid is lactose free and is what I use at the first sign of a cold or flu and it usually gets rid of it right away or at least shortens the duration to a few days instead of a few weeks. Available at health food stores, you may have to special order the liquid form.
  • Occiliccocinum homeopathic cold and flu, Walgreens, CVS and healthfood store. Pellets contain lactose so either dilute a dose in water and only take a teaspoon or find the Alpha CF liquid.
  • Deep Lung is great for respiratory infections.
  • Chestal Homeopathic Cough Medicine with honey, health food stores and CVS and Walgreens.
  • Yin Chao Chinese Medicine for colds that start with a sore throat is great.
  • High Dose Vitamin C Meyers Cocktail Infusion through an IV drip or push by a naturopathic doctor. http://www.naturopathic.org or wwwCalND.com in CA. This saves me every Christmas/Winter, including this week!

Books:

  • Can’t go to Italy this year read, Dolce di Love By Lynch
  • for Humor and belly laughs read Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris
  • go to http://www.hayhouse.com for many inspirational and spiritual books, audio books and DVD’s for adults and children
  • Listen to shows on:
  • http://www.HayHouseRadio.com

Games:

  • Kids and Adults: Simon, an electronic game that lights up and tests your memory. Can be played with 2-4 people
  • Adults: Rummikub, a game with tiles and numbers. Good mental challenge and fun.

 

Clothing:

  • Nomads Organic Clothing, this Canadian company uses all organic fabrics made from hemp, soy, bamboo and cotton. It feels so good on and will not disrupt your hormones or endocrine system and it’s great for the environment. A win-win-win! Just wish they did not make them in China. Sometimes you have to compromise. These clothes feel really soft and warm; and look stylish.                                   Available at https://nomadshempwear.com
  • Synergy Organic Clothing, mostly cotton, made in Nepal. Stores in Santa Cruz and San Francisco and available online http://synergyclothing.com
  • Smart Wool Socks, wool that doesn’t itch and keeps your toes and feet warm in the coldest weather! They also make runners socks-breathable and cushiony! Available at The Sock Shop and online http://www.smartwool.com

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a Healthy, Happy New Year filled with wonderful food, friends, family and goodies that improve your health and life! Love and Blessings to all! Please Comment and share with us your favorite  Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Vegan, Organic food, things & products.

Be Well and Thrive into your Dreams! 

Fermented Foods(Saurkraut, Coconut Yogurt, Kombucha)

Fermenting Foods

I have been having so much fun making sauerkraut, kombucha, water keifer, non-dairy coconut  yogurt and brined Bison Brisket for us and private chef clients!
I just had an opening for 2 more private clients, so if you would like a break from cooking, call me! I can work with any budget, diet and customize it all just for you with love.

I am amazed at how easy it is to make fermented food, once you know a few tricks, and how much money you can save! I love customizing my food to my own liking, don’t you? 

The benefits of enjoying fermented foods are that they contain lots of healthy bacteria like you find in probiotics! 

Fermented foods are foods that have been through a process of lactofermentation in which natural bacteria feed on the sugar and starch in the food creating lactic acid. This process preserves the food, and creates beneficial enzymes, b-vitamins, Omega-3 fatty acids, and various strains of probiotics. This can be helpful in improving digestion and overall health. 

Although the fermented foods have probiotics, we are not sure how many survive the acid of the stomach and digestion. So, keep taking a good quality probiotic as well. I also suggest you start slowly to avoid any digestive discomfort. Start with 1 TBSP. of sauerkraut which is a great garnish on top of food or 1/4 cup Kombucha/Keifer/Yogurt, and slowly increase the amount each week until you are eating the amounts that you desire. 

Did you know that 80% of our immune system is in the intestines(gut)? Yep, it’s true. So, keeping the gut healthy is always a perfect place to start  improving overall health as well as digestion. 

I love Naturopathic Medicine because it is really good at healing people’s guts. It also looks at the whole body as a unit and the philosophy is to get to the root cause and heal it, not to block a pathway with drugs and ignore the cause.

 I encourage you to eat fermented foods daily, and to have a good Naturopathic Doctor, who has been to 4 yrs. of medical school, on your team because it is important to have a doctor that is educated and experienced. 

To find a licenced ND in California go to: http://www.CalND.org, and anywhere else in the US go to: http://www.Naturopathic.org or check out the list of the one’s I know and trust at http://www.NoWheatNoDairyNoProblem.com 

Do you want to learn to make your own Fermented Foods; and save money?

 

Fermented Foods Workshop!
If you would like to learn how to make your own, I will be teaching a workshop on many of these items between Los Gatos and Santa Cruz on Saturday August 2nd from 10am-12noon! You will get to take home a big jar of sauerkraut  that you choose from a variety to things to add in! Limited space so Email me now to reserve your place laurenskitchen1@gmail.com

If you don’t like to cook, call me and I’ll make/cook customized meals for you and deliver them!

I wish each one of you beautiful souls, a wonderful, safe summer! May you enjoy sunshine, eating, cooking and being with loved ones without worrying or suffering. I look forward to seeing you soon in a cooking class or my Fermentation and Skin Care Workshops! See all the classes and workshops I am offering this summer below.

Be Well & Thrive into your Dreams, 

Lauren

New Page!

Hi Everyone! Check out my new page on this blog where I can personally assist you on your journey to better health and happiness. I’m now offering new services for people who live afar via Skype and those who live in the SF/SJ Bay area! Please feel free to share. This is a great gift too.

https://nowheatnodairynoproblem.com/menu-options-chef-service/

I have a new 6 week cooking series in January at New Leaf in Santa Cruz! Check it out and sign up at

http://www.eventbrite.com/o/new-leaf-community-markets-westside-2725205834

Let’s all have a Happy, Healthy 2014!

Be Well and Thrive, Chef Lauren

Gluten-free, Delicious Thanksgiving Recipes and Menu Planning Guide

Have family or friends or maybe yourself who are coming for Thanksgiving who are on a special diet or have health issues and concerns and you don’t know how to manage? Whether you just want to eat healthy and delicious food or have a food/health issue…you don’t have to spend the whole day cooking and cleaning in the kitchen this Thanksgiving! Below I’ll give you a week long planning guide along with recipes to make a deliciously healthful Thanksgiving that everyone can eat.

Everyone that has eaten my Thanksgiving recipes all said they are as good or better than traditional gluten recipes, and they did not miss the gluten, dairy or refined sugar! Wow, this is so wonderful and many heartfelt thanks!

Here is an easy guide to help you prepare things ahead of time you so you can enjoy your holiday and guests. Trust me after 20 years of doing this…it is so much easier than trying to be the Superhero on Thanksgiving…especially if something goes wrong-very embarrassing. Don’t be afraid to send the recipe to one of your guests/relatives and ask them to make it and bring it-delegate and gratefully accept the help. I know it is not easy, especially for people who like to be in control/charge! Remember, we allow others to grow and feel needed and be blessed by their contribution too. This is what helped me to realize micro-managing was stunting the growth of my employees! Let go, ah, it feels so good! There is still plenty for you to do.

I am listing all the goodies you can prepare ahead of time by day from my cookbook, No Wheat No Dairy No Problem-order it now on this site!

Up to one week ahead: Pie Crust (see Recipe of the Week-15 minutes), dairy-free and Gluten Free, Cranberry Sauce(refined sugar free and way better than anything that is store bought-15 minutes)

Up to three days ahead: Candied Yams( adapted from Paul Prudhomme)-40 minutes, Mashed Potatoes 30 minutes, Sweet Potatoe Pie Filling 10 minutes

Up to two days ahead: Brine 5 minutes and soak/refrigerate Turkey(fresh or frozen)-will be the juiciest ever! See my directions for thawing turkey according to weight-must be done in the refrigerator. You can now buy a Brined or Kosher Turkey and skip this step. clean your house or have it cleaned, do laundry etc..!;)

The day before:  make salad dressing/vinaigrette, chill wine, cook Turkey neck in broth and chill or gravy, Pecan Pie Filling, Cornbread for stuffing, chop vegetables(onion, celery etc…), Assemble and bake pie-Sweet Potato Pecan, Pecan, Pumpkin. I highly recommend the Sweet Potato Pecan-it’s a sure winner! See my utube video for rolling pie crust and dicing an onion at http://www.youtube.com search under LaurenHooverAuthor and laugh out loud!;) You try being videotaped and then laugh at yourself…I did! Take a hot bath and get a good night sleep, you’ll need it. Spend quality time with those you love, play a game together, go for a walk etc… because Thanksgiving is so busy that you may not get a quality conversation in that day. It so important to remember to be thankful and tell our loved one’s how grateful we are for them-especially children…they really are not mind readers!;)

Go to the grocery store for anything you still need.

Thanksgiving day: Eat Breakfast so you are not ravenous all day and then get a stomach ache from not eating for hours-you will be so much happier and your family will be very thankful. This is a lovely time to have quality time with whomever is in your home before all the rest of the guests arrive.

Begin with a Clean Kitchen-which will keep you organized and calm. Set out ingredients, measure them out and follow the recipes. Have fun! I like relaxing or upbeat music playing while I cook.

Get the kids/husband/family/friends to set the table, build a fire,  decorate-it will keep them busy and out of your kitchen-unless they like to cook! Kids love to make the name tags for the place settings-great project to keep them entertained.

Prepare stuffing(cornbread or regular or Gluten Free) and chop herbs, Stuff Turkey and bake (see my recipe that was even good enough for a US Senator)! The secret…cooking it at a very high temperature will create  crispy skin and juicy meat- not to mention-save time and energy! Yum! Reheat Mashed Potatoes, Candied Yams in a double boiler(or glass bowl above boiling water)  or the oven or microwave if absolutely necessary, cook and chop vegetables and wash/spin salad greens-toss at the table. Teenagers who like to cook will love to make salad or this is a good item to ask some else to bring. Pour wine and enjoy!

I do not put out a lot of snacks…just a few to tide people’s appetite, but not spoil it for a huge dinner. Choose 2: bowl of nuts,   hummus(put in a bowl of ice to keep cold) & raw vegetables, olives, deviled eggs all of which can be made the day ahead or store bought(of course I make them myself)!

Important tips: See Professional Secrets and Tips section of my cookbook-it will help to ensure YOUR success.

Use  oven and digital read thermometers-temperature is key. See my guide for cooking times according to the weight of the Turkey. Enlist help, people love to help.

Clean(with hot water and soap) all surfaces, sinks, counters, cutting boards, utensils and hands that touch raw Turkey to prevent spreading salmonella-food poisioning.

Keep Turkey refrigerated at 38 degrees until ready to stuff and bake.

Stuff the Turkey just before baking so bacteria will not grow.

Do NOT and I repeat, DO NOT leave food out at room temperature for longer than 2 hours. It is best to put out smaller batches. Optimal Bacteria growth temperatures are between 40-140 degrees…yep, room temperature! It grows extremely rapidly by the hour after four hours throw it out. I hate waste…so I put out smaller portions or serve everything at once and put it away or send it home with guests just after eating. Only follow this advice if you want to avoid food poisoning or a big tummy ache-really you will be so much happier and healthier.

Final Tip/Preference: To baste or not to baste? I like to soak a large piece of cheesecloth in grapeseed oil, fold it in half and in half again to fit over the Turkey. Cover the Turkey with it and I do not baste if you  like a crispy skin. The high temperature will crisp the skin and seal in the juices. Resting the Turkey for 20-30 minutes is the ONLY way to have the juice stay in the meat. If you cut into the Turkey right away or before 20 minutes, watch all the juice run away and there is nothing to get it back into the meat…it will be dry, I promise. While Turkey is resting, make gravy.

Let someone else, especially the teenagers, do the dishes!

BTW, I did all of this in a cooking class last week in 3 1/2 hours – I slept very well that night!  So, You can do it too. Just follow my recipes carefully-read them first. I like to read them the night before I make them. and again just before making them. Buy my cookbook even if you only use the Thanksgiving recipes!

Take a deep breath, have a glass of  organic wine, relax and have a very Happy Thanksgiving. From my heart to yours…may you have much to be grateful for this year. I am so grateful for many things/people  including everyone who have been so supportive of my mission in helping you change your life  with delicious, healthy food. Thank you.

FOR ALL RECIPES GO TO THE RECIPES PAGE ON THIS BLOG.

Be Well and Thrive with Blessings,

Happy Thanksgiving, Chef Lauren Hoover-West

Announcing Lauren’s Kitchen Biscotti Company and New DVD Cooking Class!

I promised you a Big announcement and surprise, so here it is just in time for the Holiday’s! I started a Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Low Glycemic Biscotti/Cookie company this year and they are now available to purchase on this site.

They come in two flavors: Cherry Orange and Double Chocolate Chip and have 5 grams of protein and a low Glycemic Load/Index of 18-29!

They differ from all other cookies and Biscotti in two ways; they are a little softer than traditional Biscotti, and they use healthy ingredients that are heart healthy and low glycemic. There is NO XANTHAN GUM/GUAR GUM or corn. 🙂

Most importantly, they are made with love in a GLUTEN-FREE FACILITY! No cross-contamination.

The main ingredients are Gluten-free Oat Flour(high protein/high fiber/heart healthy), Coconut Palm Sugar(low glycemic index) and YUMMY! Most ingredients are organic too.

I love it when I go to the coffee houses that carry my Biscotti and the employees ask me, at the check out, if I’ve had the “delicious” Gluten-free Biscotti! The employees love them even if they are not Gluten-free! So, they are for everyone. I had one employee buy them for her children’s lunches as a healthier choice for a treat! 🙂 Yeah!

New DVD: Chocolate Cooking Class with Chef Lauren!

The other big news is that I have just released a DVD Cooking Class on chocolate! It includes learning to make Chocolate Ganache, Frosting, Fondue and Truffles! They are all Gluten-free and Dairy-free and low glycemic index/load! So, you can finally have a cooking class with Chef Lauren in the comfort of your own home on your time schedule. Don’t know what to buy as a gift for the Holidays or a birthday for someone who is Gluten-free, Dairy-free or reducing their sugar intake? It is also for everyone who loves Chocolate. The Truffles are the perfect, inexpensive gift. Just make the Truffles and put them in cute Chinese take out containers or bags and tie a beautiful bow and you will have a great gift.

I wish you all happy and healthy holidays. Remember to just do what brings you peace and joy.  Go to the Buy Cookbook/Lauren’s Biscotti/DVD page to make your purchases. Thank you for your support. Many Blessings.

Updates for all previous posts

Happy New Year Everyone! I have lots of updated and new information I am excited to share with you. Hope you all had a great holiday season and a have begun a very healthy 2011.

May you have a Valentine’s filled with love and chocolate. No Wheat No Dairy No Problem has an abundance of chocolate recipes for you just in time for Valentine’s Day, but who needs to wait for that? I’ll be making Chocolate Truffles this week and hot chocolate for this rainy Sunday. Those of you who don’t cook or bake can even handle the Hot Chocolate recipe! For those who love to bake; the Molten Chocolate Cake and Chocolate Decadence Cake are a little peice of Heaven, especially with Raspberry Sauce.

Substitutions in No Wheat No Dairy No Problem Cookbook: Yes, you can use low glycemic index Coconut Palm Sugar in my cookbook in all the recipes that call for sucanat, date sugar, maple sugar-just use the same measurement 1 to 1. It is now available at the Beehive and Asian supermarkets and health food stores. Agave has not been proven unsafe, but be sure you use raw blue agave for the least amount of processing. And, make sure to read ingredients and that high fructose/corn syrup has not been added in. The Maple Agave at Trader Joe’s has corn syrup-so, do not use this-buy the blue agave there instead.

Stores: Staff of Life in Santa Cruz is moving across the street on Soquel and is much bigger! I love this store for all the unique and familiar healthy food and the best prices around. It is worth a trip even if you live “over the hill”!

Jones and Bones in Capitola has brought in a line of gluten-free flours-such as sweet potato and mesquite. They have a german line of the healthiest non-stick cookware pots/pans-it has ground diamonds. They are so amazing and don’t scratch. They’re worth the price-not inexpensive but an investment. Jennifer always has one of a kind gifts and gourmet goodies that are fantastic gifts. You can order at www.jonesandbones.com and she will pack and ship it for you. She still has rare olive oils and vinegars too.

Product News: Bob’s Red Mill now has a Gluten Free line-including GF Oats. Well, I have been waiting and now it is here-GF Bisquick! Some Costco locations are now carrying Bison(Buffalo) ground and steaks and roasts for the best price! I found a delicious GF/DF  Chocolate or Carrot Cake, with a fine crumb texture, at Sprouts in Arizona by O’Doughs a Canadian company- It will be carried at Sprouts and the Beehive in San Jose, CA.

Warning: Green and Black’s Chocolate has added Milk Powder to their dark chocolate bars! They have reformulated, too bad. ;(

Bread: You can finally have a baguette that will transport you to France, but it is made in Italy of course!;) It has a crispy crust and soft inside. Makes a great hot dog roll, baguette slices, bruscetta and sandwich roll. It is called Schar and they also have dinner rolls and sliced bread. Yes, it has brown rice flour and psyllium. I don’t suggest you eat it all the time, but it will definately satisfy your yearning without a need to cheat! You just heat it up in a toaster oven or regular oven at 400 degress for 5 minutes.  It is available at the Beehive in San Jose, one of the best gluten free independant health food stores.

Dariy Alternative: Mimicreme has release their Dairy-free/Vegan Whipping “Cream” made with nuts! Yeah, we can have fluffy whipped “cream” again. Try it on top of any of my desserts and my Hot Chocolate recipe-mmm. You can also make the Meringue in my cookbook for a great alternative.

Sad things: Clementine’s Kitchen store in Monterey closed. We wish David and Drew all the best and thank them for providing us with one of the most beautiful cooking stores ever. Lots of Love and best wishes.

New Gluten Testing Lab: Cyrex Labs finally opened! They specialize in the most comprehensive and up to date saliva and blood testing for gluten sensitivity/celiac’s disease  etc…No more endoscopies-that is no longer the gold standard-thank you Cyrex! See the page on this site for Naturopathic Doctors(Dr. Bradley West) who use Cyrex.

Personal News/Blessings & Coming Soon: I will be posting a few of my television apperances on ABC Live in Sacramento and Chicago for you to watch.

Coming Soon: This year I will be filming DVD’s of cooking classes for you to enjoy at your convenience and you can watch them more than once, pause, rewind and fast forward all you like! They will be sold on this site and at my classes/events.

New Page Coming Soon: Dr. Bradley West, a Naturopathic Doctor will be writing a page on this blog for all of you on various subjects-stay tuned for that within the next month.

On a personal note: I’m engaged to be married to a man worth waiting  43 years to share this life together! 🙂

Be Well and share this site with all you know that can benefit from it. “May you live the life you’ve always imagined” by Henry David Thoreau

Gluten/Dairy free Thanksgiving Leftovers Ideas!

What can I make with leftover Turkey from the Holidays? Tired of eating plain turkey the same old way? Here are some ideas and recipe referrals from my cookbook, No Wheat No Dairy No Problem:

Creamed Turkey(see “cream” sauce and creamed Tuna/Vegetable recipes)-make cream sauce and add diced Turkey, green peas, poultry seasoning and serve over rice, quinoa or rice pasta.

Turkey Pot Pie-use Chicken Pot Pie recipe and substitute Turkey for Chicken! Yum!

Turkey Stroganoff-recipe in my cookbook.

BBQ Turkey Sandwich-shred Turkey and pour your favorite GF BBQ Sauce over it(I like Bone Suckin Sauce from JonesandBones.com). Heat in a pot until it is simmering. Toast your GF bun(I love Schar baugettes or rolls  made in Italy sold at the Beehive in San Jose, CA). Slice the bun in half and pour the BBQ Turkey over it, roll up those sleeves and have lots of paper towels!

Turkey Salad/Sandwich: add organic mayonnaise to diced Turkey, chopped pecans or walnuts, diced celery, diced organic apple, chiffonade(finely sliced) fresh basil, dried cranberries. Serve on a bed of lettuce or use romaine lettuce and make a wrap or gluten free bread with mayonnaise and cranberry sauce.

Turkey Burritos: Fill Udi’s GF flour tortillas with Turkey and refried or black beans-top with guacamole and fresh/refrigerated salsa.

Turkey Tacos: Fill organic corn tortillas or Gluten-free  Cassava or Almond tortillas, that have been heated in a pan, with diced or shredded Turkey,  organic baby tomatoes halved, organic baby greens: arugala, mache, micro-greens. Top with guacamole and fresh/refrigerated salsa (no preservatives please!).

Ultimate Turkey Sandwich: Gluten-Free  bread, cranberry sauce, Kite Hill(almond cream cheese, plain or chive) or organic mayonnaise. This was served in a Victorian House Restaurant I worked at as a teenager-originally with regular cream cheese on Brioche bread! Yummy!

The not so classic Hot Turkey Sandwich: Gluten-free bread(toasted), hot mashed potatoes, hot sliced Turkey, hot Gravy and cold cranberry sauce! Now that is what I call comfort food!

Thai Curry: Red Curry Paste, coconut milk, turkey, thai basil, broccoli florets or veggie of choice-serve over brown rice. I like Mae Ploy brand curry paste-no preservatives. Quick, easy, flavorful and delicious.

Turkey Stock: Put Turkey carcass into a large stock pot, add celery hearts/stalks, carrots, onion, bouquet garni(thyme, parsley, peppercorns) tied in cheesecloth or loose. Bring to a boil, scoop  foam off the top with laddie. Turn down to a simmer and cook uncovered for 1 hour. Season with sea salt and pepper to taste. Strain and store stock in mason jars in the refrigerator for a few days or freeze(leave 1/2 inch of room at top to expand). Use within one day to make Turkey Soup. Scrape off all meat for Turkey soup etc…discard all bones and vegetables and bouquet garni.

Turkey Soup: Bring stock to a boil and add sliced carrots and any vegetables you like(cooking times will vary-softer vegetables cook faster). Turn down to a simmer and cook until vegetables are fork tender, not mushy. Add Turkey, top with fresh chopped parley or herbs and serve immediately. You can also add cooked rice or cooked quinoa/rice pasta such as penne or fussilli. Do not attempt to cook the rice or pasta in the stock as it will be too starchy.

Variations on Soup:

Mexican-add tortilla chips, avocado chunks, diced jalapeno, chopped cilantro instead of parsley

Asian- add Tamari(wheat free soy sauce), rice noodles, cilantro, grated ginger, sliced scallions and a thai chile or chili sauce/flakes for heat if desired.

Gobble, Gobble, who knew there were so many things you can do with Turkey? Hope you love these ideas and have fun with them. Many thanks to all of you who continue to support me and read my blog…please pass the word. Remember my cookbook is now available on my blog through Pay Pal-makes a great holiday gift.

Ham Leftovers: Ham & Broccoli Quiche, Ham & Eggs, Eggs Benedict(dairy-free Hollandaise in my cookbook), BBQ Ham on GF Hot Dog Buns, Ham & Green Bean Pot Pie, Mac n Cheeze w/Ham-make my “Cream” Sauce w/1/2 stock and 1/2 alternative milk and add 1 cup of Parmela or Daiya Cheddar or Mozzarella Shreds w/GF elbow macaroni, Ham & Scalloped Potatoes. See my cookbook and the Free Recipes Page on this blog for recipes.

MY FAVORITE GLUTEN-FREE BREADS: Bread SRSLY Sourdough Rolls & Bread(sorghum sourdough made in San Francisco! Toast well), Schar Baguettes, Arise Bakery Baguettes(Light Sorghum & Millet or Dark Seeded Teff ) made in Humbolt, CA, Canyon Bakehouse Foccacia(toasted) or sliced breads, Silver Hills Sorghum sliced(must toast and is dense). I bake all of the above bread that are not sliced in the oven at 350 for 10 minutes, cool and slice. I use a dedicated gluten-free toaster for sliced bread and rolls. Enjoy and let us know your favorites! 

SURPRISE: I have developed a yeast-free Savory Quick Bread recipe & a raw dehydrated nut or seed bread in my upcoming ecookbook, No Gluten, No Dairy, No Sugar, No Problem!

Enjoy your time off and remember to take care of your body, mind and spirit. Wishing you many blessings, love, joy, peace and good food in 2017. I have been working hard on a NEW COOKBOOK that I aim to release in early 2017! It’s an ecookbook with videos!!!!!! 

Butter Alternatives

I am one of those people who grew up with margarine for daily use and butter was for special occasions and holidays only. When I moved out on my own, I decided that I would never eat margarine again! Well, that was true until I was diagnosed with a dairy allergy.

My new love became olive oil and grapeseed oil, which you can read a long article on this site to learn more. Sometimes, especially when baking, I was looking for something with a mild taste and the same consistency as butter. I tried lots of “healthy” alternatives. One of the things that was most important to me was zero trans-fats and no hydrogenated oils and no preservatives or artificial additives.

After lots of tasting and baking, I fell in love with Earth Balance.  It has a smooth, creamy texture and tastes sweet and salty-very satisfying-you’ll never miss the butter! It is a vegetable spread that is vegan, non-dairy, no trans-fat and no hydrogenated oil. So, it is heart-healthy and will not clog your arteries. It has 100 calories per Tablespoon which is the same as butter, but it has half the saturated fat as butter. Butter has cholesterol and Earth Balance does not.

It comes in sticks and tubs. It is made with oils from olive, canola, soybean and palm fruit. It now comes in soy free too. They also make shortening sticks. I like to bake with the sticks and use the tubs for spreading onto food-great on veggies-especially yams/potatoes or bread, biscuits, scones, cornbread etc… The tub does not bake the same at the sticks. I use Earth Balance in my cookbook, No Wheat No Dairy No Problem-personally signed copies may be purchased through Pay Pal on this site.

Earth Balance may be purchased at health food stores  in the refrigerated section. As of now, Trader Joe’s carries the tubs, not the sticks. Give it a try, I think you will love it too.  Even my friends who can eat butter, choose to eat Earth Balance once they try it! Try the Recipe of the Week-Irish Soda Bread with Honey spread(uses Earth Balance)-YUM.

Milk Alternatives-Hemp,nuts, rice etc…

In my cookbook, No Wheat No Dairy No Problem, the recipes contain milk alternatives such as  Almond Milk. I decided to try all the various milk alternatives such as Hemp, quinoa/millet/amaranth, soy, rice, various nuts, and I found that I really like most of them, but some I like better than others.

I am not a big fan of soy for many reasons-mostly because we get too much of it. If you do choose soy, it is best in its natural form-Organic Edamame beans. Be sure that you purchase Non-GMO or Organic soy. If you want to know more see the film Food Inc.

My new favorite milk alternative is Hemp byTempt Living Harvest. Why? It tastes good and is very high in Omega 3 and 6. Hemp has no known allergens, and is a valuable source of calcium(40%),  protein, magnesium, phosphorus, vitamin E, iron and zinc. It is FREE of dairy,nuts, soy, gluten and cholesterol. It has no trans fats, is low in sodium and is vegan, Kosher and Non-GMO! I buy the Unsweetened Original, but it also comes in vanilla and chocolate. It is not inexpensive, so I buy it on sale and stock up. You can find it in health food stores.

Tempt now makes Ice “Cream”-a non-dairy frozen dessert, but I have yet to try it. I am parital to my Ice “Cream” recipes because I have found the texture of my recipes to be closer to that of the real thing than other alternatives. I do buy Coconut Bliss when I don’t have time to make my own. Yesterday, I made a batch of Vanilla Ice “Cream” and it only took me 1 hour and 4-8hours to set-well worth it!

I alternate each week with a different alternative for economic reasons and health reasons. I developed my wheat allergy due to overexposure, and the last thing I want to do is become allergic/sensitive to any of my alternatives! So I alternate between Almond, Hemp, and Hazelnut. Occasionally I will drink rice milk or non-GMO soy milk when nothing else is available when I am out.

Hazelnut is so delicious plain or chocolate! Try it in my Hot Chocolate recipe for an Italian version-Che buono! Hazelnuts are very anti-inflammatory-Dr. Perricone and many others recommend them. Hazelnut milk is high in calcium(30%), vitamin D, riboflavin and vitamin E. You can make your own Hazelnut or Almond Milk from my cookbook too-use organic nuts to avoid pesticides. Pacific Natural Foods makes it and it is Kosher and Gluten Free.

You can find these alternatives in boxes on the store shelves. They do not need to be refrigerated until opened, and last 7-10 days once opened and kept in the refrigerator. I take the individual ones on the road-great for vacation or when I only need a small amount in a recipe. I have been using these alternatives in my breakfast smoothies with a small amount of coconut milk for the creamy mouth feel. A sure way to loose weight is to drink an 8 oz smoothie in place of breakfast or lunch with the soy lecithin(see blog post) which breaks down stored fat-especially in the belly!

Do not use these alternatives for infants because their is not enough of the proper balance of nutrition for them, but it’s great for kids and adults. So, go buy some boxes of these Unsweetened versions of milk alternatives and find your own favorites-chill them and do a taste comparison both alone and in smoothies. See Recipe of the Week for my smoothie. Come back next week to read about my favorite new cream alternative!

Have fun and Be Well,  Chef Lauren