Wednesday, December 05, 2007

MORE gluten free dairy free Walt Disney World

Click here to look inside our gluten and dairy free lunch bag

We are back from vacation number two to the place where we feast like queens on a gluten and dairy free diet! Here is the scoop:

Day 1) I started with the 1900 Park Fare dinner. Bean loved the fresh fruits and veggies. I adored two wonderful salads available and the chicken from the kids station! Now, the chef did offer to make ours separate, but I felt comfortable eating from the buffet after looking it over and talking to her about ingredients.
So, the Narcouse/Neeseau.... I can't remember what it was called, but it was a mouth watering blend of greens, beans, olives, oils, and delight. I loved it! The chicken was just perfect and only seasoned with salt and pepper. Yum yum yum. And for dessert, Toffutti ice or Rice Dream cream was available (we don't eat Toffuti at home, and someone emailed me to let me know there is controversy about if the Vanilla used in Toffuti is actually 100% gluten free, so do check on that before you consume!).
The atmosphere was loud and busy, but it was worth it! Everyone had a great time, and full belly. Sorry no pictures! I was too busy eating!

Day 2) our first full day!
Crystal Palace for Breakfast

Delicious! We loved the food choices here, same as last time! Yummy fruits, fun atmosphere, delicious potatoes! The eggs are dairy free. Great!

The Chef Brought out gluten free dairy free pancakes for Bean. She loved that too!

We ate at Whispering Canyon Cafe that night. Again, loud and crowded, but the food was very good. The chicken was tender and delicious. Dessert was nothing too special (Itzakadoozie pop). But did I mention how good the chicken was (second chicken pictured below...I didn't actually taste the kids grilled chicken)?

more from Whispering Canyon

Day 3) Tusker House for breakfast in the Animal Kingdom.

This was...loud and crowded, yet again, but good. The chef treated us...see next picture

This was our cutest display of gluten free pancakes on the trip! Sadly, they didn't taste very good, but with all that pure maple syrup and cherry topping, they got eaten up! That was a nice surprise.

Artist Point for supper: I had the Market Salad and Salmon. It was delicious. They were very attentive to my restrictions. I did, however, get sick this night. I can't say for certain if it was from the meal or something else. They seemed to be doing a very good job of keeping the allergens out! There were only packaged brownies for dessert. But the atmosphere was my favorite of the trip. Much quieter, beautiful paintings, fun and knowledgeable wait staff! We have been here twice now. I do enjoy it!

Day 4) Brown Derby for supper: The chef here was just great. He brought bean out some veggies she loves as a perfect starter.

He brought us the EngerG rolls, warmed, and a fennel infused olive oil to dip our bread in! YUM!!! What a great idea, by the way!

The chicken was disappointing. It was very dry. The potatoes and sweet dressing on them were very good, though!

Bean had a hot dog and french fries. The bun is gluten free, dairy free.

Brown Derby served my favorite dessert of the trip...a cup of berries with homemade mango sorbet! Delicious! I shared mine with Bean because she loved the mango!

Day 5) Biergarten in Epcot. This surprised me because I didn't expect to like it. I only booked it because I knew my husband would LOVE it. Well, it was my favorite meal of the trip! I adored the salads! The red cabbage salad and the tomato onion salad were my favorites. The fruit gel for dessert was nice. It was a terrific meal. Bean ate mostly hot dogs (although I am sure they had another name). We all ended up stuffed! She also had a packaged brownie for dessert.

Day 6) Kona Cafe for supper: First off, we had the WORST service in the world this night! We checked in at 5pm and then they forgot us. At 5:30 we went back and they said "whoops, sorry!". That was just the beginning...All through dinner, the service was awful. Slow, rude, unprofessional. This was NOT what I expected from the Kona at the Poly! I am hoping we just caught them on an off night. The chef we worked with was not anywhere near as creative or helpful as any other chef we talked to on Disney property. He basically brought us the bare bones. I asked for rolls, and we get a basket of them with nothing to put on them. The salad is torn down to just lettuce, the chicken, while it looks delicious, was terribly dry and bland. The only good thing was the side salad with dinner (on the plate below) and the non dairy ice cream for dessert!

There was one other good thing, Bean liked her rice noodles. She didn't like her chicken, and she didn't eat anything other than the noodles, but at least she liked them!

There is my dish. The salad was very good. The chicken was just dry as a bone.

Other spots we ate:

Cosmic Rays: Long line, long wait, but okay counter service. Not terrible, and best to eat early. We had a salad and a hot dog with no bun. We had to speak to the manager and wait aprox 8 minutes for a fresh batch to ensure no contamination. We had apples that were pre cut and bagged. They had a gross flavor. The fruit flat was good, and the carrots were good.

Pecos Bills: We learned our lesson and went early. Everyone was happy! No wait at 11am. We had burgers and we opted for no bun this time (although they did offer us a gluten free bun). We had carrots and grapes. The grapes tasted weird to me. Kind of like they hadn't been cleaned or something? I don't know. We didn't like them. We also had applesauce, which is good.

Pepper Market in the CSR Hands down the WORST experience of our two trips. We ate there 3-4 times and each time was awful. The manager, hosts, and wait staff just refused to help us with our dietary restrictions, and the chefs were just too busy and uneducated to provide us safe meals (for example, handed me bacon that was sitting in a bowl of bread, went to put the batter in a gluten cooking waffle iron, stuff like that). And the rudeness! You guys wouldn't believe it. I am a soft spoken small woman with my young children, and when I asked for help, I was treated as if I were the worst insult to walk through the door. One woman actually threw her hands up in the air and stormed off, shaking her head, when I asked her where I could find something. The manager barked a rude command at a host, totally ignoring me, when I asked him for help with our allergies. This restaurant is not run by Disney and it shows. I will not go back to this resort again, and it's too bad because it's lovely, beautiful and fun.

The Grand One Yacht CruiseIf you take a cruise, be sure to bring your own drinks. There was no running water, nor were there any beverages to buy, so we had a two hour drive with gluten free cake and nothing to wash it down! Just come prepared and enjoy the luxury.

Main Street BakeryWe got the Rich's brand of gluten free dairy free chocolate chip cookies. They were VERY crumbly! I am amazed they hold their shape on the stand! But the taste is good. We also got the pre packaged Rich's brownies, which several restaurants had served us. They are good. Not as good as the freshly baked brownies that we had on our last trip, but better then Itzakadozee all week long! LOL And we tried to get a Dole Whip, but we failed. It was closed! I had read that there were dairy free, and I was excited to try one, but the Aloha Isle wasn't open at 10:30am, when we went, and we never made it back.

I will come back with tips and tricks, so come back soon!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Gluten Free Dairy Free Walt Disney World

Click here to look inside our gluten and dairy free lunch bag

Click here for more details on the entire trip and gluten free / casein free food at Disney World

First, I must apologize for the poor photos, but I felt a bit like a dork taking pictures of my food! Too funny. We had a great experience with eating gluten free and dairy free in disney. The Chefs were wonderful! Here is our trip (of eating!)

The First was Boma for supper. It was good. There were many choices for myself, but not so much that my daughter loved. Many of the foods were too spicy for her, although I enjoyed that. The coconut salmon, potatoes, and mango vinaigrettes were my favorites here.

At Boma, they brought her a sorbet that tasted a bit like cranberry and mint. It was unique. She enjoyed it.

The Crystal Palace was the favorite for both the girls because of the characters. Bean loved her GF/CF Mickey pancakes! She ate one, and then requested another, which they made for her promptly.

Here is the rest of Bean's plate from Crystal Palace: fruits, egg, potatoes that tasted divine!

We ate at Pecos Bills once. The line was SO LONG that it took almost an hour to get our food, but it was worth it for Bean to have a gluten free dairy free bun with her burger! She loved that! I do think reservations are the way to go with little kids, though.

Artist Point is a fine dining restaurant in Wilderness Lodge. We all loved our food. This is the buffalo with green veggies and sweet potato. We also had gluten free chicken and white potato. It was very good!

Some common found snacks were these yummy rice treats, brownies, and nuts. We were able to get these at Mara as well as at many of the shops

Chef Eddie, at Mara, was wonderful. He made Bean some gluten free dairy free waffles each morning, and he made me dairy free eggs. This was counter service so we purchased drinks and fruit separately. He was so nice, as were all of the chefs. He always came out to talk to Bean and to make sure she enjoyed her meal!

The Rainforest Cafe at Animal Kingdom had gluten free bread on hand, as well as gluten free fries and other items. Here is what Bean chose. We enjoyed this meal as well, although it did take a long time for the food to arrive. It was an enjoyable place to wait.

At Rengetsu in Orlando (not disney) they took special care to bring Bean gluten and dairy free Nigiri. They subbed the sushi rice (which is soaked in a sauce that could contain gluten) with gluten free. They used no sauces. She ate every bite and she loved it.

The Liberty Tree Tavern is another character meal and we had a great time there. The food was delicious Thanksgiving style. They made some GF/CF mashed potatoes and gravy for us, as well as turkey, ham, roast beef. They cooked us separate beans in oil, and they brought out gluten free rolls. Bean said "they sure have a lot of gluten free bread in Florida!" We loved this place!

We celebrated a birthday at the Liberty Tree Tavern, so they brought us GF/CF chocolate cakes and rice dream to eat with the rest of our group. Delicious!

Hollywood and Vine at MGM was fantastic. They had so many great veggie choices and the chef grilled salmon and steak for us too! Plus homemade brownies (made that day). They were so wonderful. This was another character meal with singing and dancing for the kids. The food surprised us. It was wonderful! They also had gluten free rolls, which they brought out promptly. Wonderful!

Monday, December 04, 2006

Pictures from my December gluten free, casein free, egg free class

Click here to look inside our gluten and dairy free lunch bag

I just finished up my last class in partnership with Spinal Corrective Center. It was a series of four classes and it was really a ton of fun. There are so many great people in the area. I hope to spend more time with many of them in the new year. I baked a ton of gluten free, dairy free, egg free, soy free foods for this event. I even managed a few specific carbohydrate safe recipes. My mom came up the day before to help me finish up the baking, and she was a terrific help during the class :)
If you want a recipe, just email me through

Here you see some Pamela's cupckaes made with Flax Seed for egg replacer. They turned out just lovely. Next to them are SCD safe peanut butter cookies made with brazil and pecan flours, as well as local honey. Then there is a basket of muffins, which may be the Kinnickinnick white cake mix or the Gifts of Nature Cranberry Orange. Nut sure which one, but they both turned out good with flax egg replacer. Thumbs up!

Above we start with Laura's Choice Cookies (my favorite sugar free, egg free, gluten free, casein free cookie!) followed by Gifts of Nature Cranberry Orange muffin/cookie mix baked into cookies. These were delicious too! Third is the Kinnickinnick white cake mix with flax egg replacer. It worked wonderfully. The muffins really popped up.

Breads From Anna Pumpkin bread (one of my favorites) and Breads by Anna's banana bread. I also made her Banana bread mix with only one banana and 3/4 cup ground cranberries, and that was a treat. Yum! Next to the breads are some premade Pamela's cookies (which always go over well).

More Pamela's premade cookies, followed by Kinnickinnick chocolate cake. I don't know if I could pick between the Pamela's and Kinnickinnick cake mixes. They were both delicious, and they both worked great as cupcakes with flax seed egg replacer! Next up is the Pamela's brownie. This took forever to cook with the egg replacer, but it turned out delicious. I believe that it was the only product I made that contains soy (from the chocolate chips).

Another shot of the Pamela's brownie followed by two homemade pies. The first is my vanilla coconut pudding pie on a Kinnickinnick graham cracker crust. Every bite was devoured of both pies. They were quite popular. The second is my favorite flavor, which is chocolate, butterscotch coconut pudding pie on Breads from Anna's Pie Crust mix. This is so good!

Finally, a sugar free tart cherry crisp made with honey, maple, and Gifts of Nature all purpose flour and gluten free oats. This was one of my favorites.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

My recent low allergen food classes

Click here to look inside our gluten and dairy free lunch bag

I have been having so much fun with this most recent string of classes I've been teaching. It is all being hosted through our local DAN doctor, who has done so much for the community members here!
This is a series of 4 classes. The first one was a low allergen breads class, where I baked about 8 loaves of different breads from mixes. I used all gluten, dairy (casein) and egg free ingredients. You can check out my reviews of the different brands Here.
In addition to the breads, I also cooked up some gf/cf mac and cheese, pumpkin pie, and brownies, cookies, and other treats to sample. The class focus was on low allergen lunches and the turnout was great. We had about 55 people sign up.
2nd on the list was the breakfast class. We had a smaller venu for this one, and aprox 25 people in attendance. Again, we focused on high protein gluten, dairy, soy, and egg free breakfast ideas (as well as sugar free). It was fun and we ate well. I made the tastiest granola, cashew yogurt, and pancakes (of course!).
The third class was a full blown fall harvest luncheon where 25 of us sat together to dine on allergen free turkey, squash soup, whipped sweet potatoes, salad, pumpkin pudding, punch and truffles. We all took turns telling our story, and I really enjoyed the group. I could have spent all day with these wonderful people! So much to share and learn.
The final class is coming up in December and I am looking forward to it! Comment me if you would like any of my handouts or recipes :)

Hot dog, I won a gluten free recipe contest!

Click here to look inside our gluten and dairy free lunch bag

Well, I didn't really WIN, per se, but my recipe for a chocolate ganache coconut cookie won honorable mention from the Pamela's Products recipe contest. I didn't know I had won anything until I came home to a box full of 5 mixes, 2 bags of cookies, several kitchen utensils, and some Pamela's product clothing items. It was such a treat! We have been enjoying my favorite chocolate cake today, courtesy of Pamela's.

If you're interested in my GF/CF product reviews (for mixes) Click Here

Monday, September 11, 2006

Gluten and Dairy free lunches exposed

Here is a quick look into Bean's GF/CF lunchbag on any given day.

A traditional lunch of peanut butter and jam with carrots, oranges, cookie and juice. The bread is Breads From Anna's yeast free mix made with Flax as egg replacer. The cookie is from a Gluten Free Pantry Mix. This lunch was a hit with Bean.

Sneaking in the fruit! Here I blended organic oranges with a bit of Rice Dream Vanilla ice cream and West Soy brand Rice Milk. This drink contains one large orange. Also served with a Breads From Anna Pumpkin muffin, bacon, Laura's Choice cookie (see baking page), and fresh beans.

A Tuna salad with dill on Anna's Yeast Free bread with EnviroKidz gluten free animal crackers, a tangerine cup and chips (these are corn chips, but quinoa, rice, and potato are other options for the occassional chip snack).

One of Bean's favorite lunches is pasta salad with peas. We use Veganaise for our dressing, but that does contain some soy oil. There are other options for homemade as well as commercial dressings that avoid soy. Served with salted tomatoes, apple, and Laura's Choice cookies.

Is there a kid who doesn't like Franks and Beans? We use dairy, soy, gluten free hot dogs and beans. Banana and parboiled broccoli followed up with a chocolate chip cookie for dessert.

Bean's favorite vegetable and chicken stock soup with EnerG crackers, tangerines, cookie, and finger sandwiches.

Gluten free Spaghetti with red sauce kept warm in the thermos served with green beans, apple, and a chocolate brownie treat (Gifts From Nature Flour mix and recipe).

Breakfast anyone? Bean can eat eggs, so here we have eggs kept warm in the thermos served with bacon, fresch mangos, and a Breads From Anna pumpkin muffin. If you can't use eggs, a nut yogurt would be a good protein source to add to this meal.

So this may not look great, but it is one of Bean's favorites. She ate every bite. This is our taco salad. The butter leaf lettuce has Veganaise on it (contains soy, you could use the cashew yogurt recipe from our 2 week challenge in place of the veganaise). She puts her corn chips on top (millet flat bread, quinoa chips, or a non grain such as avocado would all be good subs for corn chips). Finally, she pours her pasture raised ground beef and tomato mixture on top. Taco Salad. Certified gltuen free oatmeal cookie by Gifts From Nature, and banana.

Gluten and dairy free hot dogs in the thermos served with corn on the cob, oranges, pineapple, and two Laura's Choice cookies with certified gluten free oats from Gifts of Nature.

GF/CF stir fry: rice, chicken, peas mixed together with homemade sauce made for an easy dish served with fruit and a Gluten Free Pantry cookie.

Okay, even gluten free casein free kids need pizza SOMETIMES! This is a KnickKnick pizza crust, corn free katsup and Toffuti cheese. This is a soy product, and we don't generally eat soy, but every now and again we may splurge on a soy cheese or some other such soy concoction. Served with carrots and Veganaise (more soy!), which could easily be replaced for your homemade mayonnaise from Garden of Eating Diet, by Rachel and Don Mastez!

Today Bean only wanted a salad, so there you have it. No frills salad of red leaf lettuce and cucumber slices served with honeydew melon. Our fun food today is the French's potato sticks (which we haven't tried, but they were verified gluten free on the French's site). And OJ. Easy lunch today.

Here are a few "new" products for us. Kinnikinnik makes a cookie called K-Toos that is the best GF/CF cream cookie we have tasted! Hormel has a deli meat out called Natural Choice. It says gluten free right on the label! That is a big treat for the girls, as we haven't purchased deli meat in years. This bread is the Pamela's mix made with eggs in the bread machine. You can see On my Mix Reviews that this mix doesn't work well with egg replacer, but you can see it works great with egg. A bit of fresh fruit and Bean has a happy lunch!