Thursday, February 27, 2014

Review: bionaturae Gluten Free Pasta

Years ago, when I moved into my first place, my Auntie took the time to put together a family recipe cookbook for me—handwritten! It was the most amazing gift. In her perfect penmanship, she carefully hand wrote recipe cards of the dishes I grew up eating. Auntie included recipes from my mother, her sisters, my grandmother, and my great-grandmother. Each recipe card included attribution to the chef. 

All these years later, my recipe book is looking a little worse for the wear. It is tattered. The spine is bent out of shape. There are splashes and smudges covering the most used recipe pages. These include chicken parmigiana, baked ziti, meatballs, pancakes, brownies, and apple pie. 

You see where I'm going with this?

I will admit that when Celiac son was first diagnosed, I felt guilty at how emotional I was, and I was trying to be so strong for him. And then another Celiac mother said to me "It's okay to be sad about this." So I was. I allowed myself a couple of really good cries. I cried that my son was never again going to get to eat Oreos, or Bertucci's bread, or "real" pizza, or my grandmother's whoopie pies or so many of the foods that I grew up with. 

But when I was done crying, it was time to get to work. I am, after all, his mother. And one of my primary jobs is to feed and to nourish him. Time to start learning a new way to cook, and finding substitutions to make some of those favorite family recipes work.

Celiac son was always a huge pasta fan. Funny—because when I look back to the couple of undiagnosed years BEFORE, he never gave up his pasta. He would shy away from McDonald's and Dairy Queen, and from sandwiches and cereal. I never noticed the pattern, though. I just thought he didn't like junk food. But he never backed down from a good bowl of pasta. 

And this is the reason for my post.

Trying to find the right pasta to satisfy him and to help him to embrace his new diet took a few tries, but we hit the jackpot early on.

The BEST gluten free pasta we have found is bionaturae Organic Gluten Free pasta.

gluten free pasta

I make it with everything! My grandmother's chicken parmigiana over linguini, my Auntie's gulash, my mother's spaghetti and meatballs (all with gluten free breadcrumbs of course), and another Auntie's baked ziti.

Our entire family devours this pasta like we did in the non-gluten free days. Even peanut-allergy brother, who is the pickiest eater in the house, doesn't even notice that he is eating gluten free pasta when I serve bionaturae. 

I have found bionaturae at Shaw's and Whole Foods. And unfortunately, it is pricey—about $3.99 for 12 ounces. But I promise you, it is worth every penny. We have tried about a half-dozen gluten free pastas and none of them even came close to bionaturae. 

How about you? Have you had any luck with gluten free pastas? I'd love to hear from you!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Welcome to my blog: New Celiac Mom!

Hello! Welcome to my very first post on my new blog: New Celiac Mom.

If you haven't read my About page, be sure to check it out. I am the mother of a 10 year old child who was diagnosed about 6 months ago with Celiac Disease. This diagnosis has changed the way our family functions (to say the least). We are in the very early stages of educating ourselves about Celiac, enduring trials and tribulations, and jubilating over the fact that my son's constant tummy aches are—for the most part—gone.

Celiac son has a peanut allergy brother, so food allergies are not brand new to us. Peanut allergy brother has traveled with an Epi-pen his entire life and does not know what a peanut (or peanut butter or Reese's Peanut Butter Cups or peanut M&Ms) taste like. Peanut allergy brother could go into anaphylactic shock if he accidentally comes in contact with a peanut. Scary stuff.

Although Celiac son's symptoms do not seem as severe on the outside, we know that what is going on in the inside is just as scary. As a family, we want to do everything we can to keep him safe. Since his diagnosis came later in life, he knows what he's "missing." Pizza. Pasta. Bagels. Muffins. Baked Goods.

If you're reading this, I'm sure you can relate. 

So, if you are also on a new Celiac journey, or even if your journey is not so new, I'd love to hear from you. I will be sharing tips and tricks that have worked for us, how-to's, yummy recipes we love, reviews, and probably most of all, reflections of our Celiac journey.