August 3, 2013

Adventures in Gluten Free Cooking Part I

So I stumbled across a little gem on a video blog that I follow called Reluctantly Healthy.  It's hosted by Judy Greer and I really enjoy some of the topics she covers.  I came across this one this past week about the "gluten free fad".  I've always thought that going gluten free was a really silly idea unless you have something serious like Celiac Disease.  However, in this video the nutrition expert on the show suggested going off gluten for seven days as an experiment.  You can watch the short video to see what she said, but basically she said that a lot of people can have an intolerance without knowing it.  By cutting out gluten, cravings can be curbed.  It can aid in weight loss, as well as just make you feel better!  I've noticed lately that I've felt very sluggish and tired, even whilst working out (which is supposed to give you more energy!).  I have even heard that in reality, our bodies were not really meant to process a lot of gluten.  Personally, I have hit a plateau in weight loss.  I know that I struggle with binge eating and cravings.

So... I'm experimenting.  It's not convenient, let me tell you.  Gluten free breads, pastas, and things like quinoa or millet are EXPENSIVE!!  Definitely not in my budget.  Very frustrating.  But, if this works, I will have to find a way to adapt.  I bought some ancient grain bread and gluten free pasta.  Rice is cheap fortunately.

I'm going to be experimenting with recipes this week and will be posting them here!  Tonight?  Brown rice with veggies and chicken.

brown rice
2 chicken tenderloins or 1 chicken breast
olive oil
1 cup thawed frozen peas
1/4 red pepper
1/4 yellow pepper
green onion
herbes de provence (if you've never cooked with this stuff... do it!  It's a mix that contains chervil, basil, rosemary, tarragon, garlic, lavender, marjoram, savory, thyme, and parsley.  I imagine it's what France tastes like... that and butter!)
garlic powder (not garlic salt!!)

 1. Prepare 1 cup of dry brown rice according to instructions on the package.  I used 2 cups of water, a tsp of butter, 1/2 tsp of salt and 1 cup of rice.
2. While your rice is cooking  put your chicken in a ziplock bag.  Add about a tbsp of herbes de provence, 1 tsp of garlic powder, salt and pepper.  "Mush" it with your hands and let sit until you're ready to cook it.
3. Once your rice has about 15 minutes left to cook, start cooking your chicken.  I sauteed the chicken in a pan with a tsp of butter and tsp of olive oil.
4. Once your chicken is browned on both sides add your veggies.  I sliced up all my green onions, a red and yellow pepper.  Since I only needed 1/4 of each pepper, and a little green onion, I froze the rest to use another day.  I chopped up the pepper I needed and added these and a small handful of peas to the chicken to saute.

 (freeze fruits and veggies spread out on a cookie sheet to avoid freezer burn)
5. Once your rice is near done, add the rest of the peas, a little garlic powder, and a little herbs de provence to the rice. Stir and replace the lid.
6. While your rice finishes cooking, chop up your cooked chicken.
7.  Once your rice is done, add your chicken and sauteed veggies.
 8. Enjoy!  This recipe easily makes enough for 2-3 meals. (depending on how hungry you are)
 This is a picture of the leftover yummies.  Ready for lunch tomorrow!

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