Wednesday, November 28, 2012

A Gluten Free Thanksgiving

I like to think we would make an effort for one person in the family, but since there are five people in my family who eat gluten free, our Thanksgiving dinner was planned so almost everything was gluten free or had an alternative.

Here's how it went down:

Turkey: Used gluten free flour to coat the turkey bag.

Mashed Potatoes: Naturally gluten free.

Gravy: Used gluten free flour or cornstarch as a thickener. Not sure which since I didn't make it, but there are options.

Stuffing: Obviously gluten. There was discussion of making a gluten free one, but most of the gluten free eaters didn't even like stuffing anyway.

Cranberry Sauce: Naturally gluten free.

Sweet Potatoes: Naturally gluten free.

Green Beans: Skipped the traditional creamy sauce w/ french fried onion topping. I wrapped them in bacon and drizzled them with a sweetened garlic soy sauce. I used my sister's soy sauce because many soy sauces have gluten in them. My 11 month old ate the green beans like candy, and even my brother who never eats green beans tried them because they came with bacon.

Veggie Tray: Naturally gluten free. The ranch dip had to be checked to be sure it was gluten free, and for me it was egg free too.

Rolls: Someone made gluten free rolls. A few others brought store bought gluten rolls. If I'd been at home, I'd have made some rolls, but I didn't want to spread gluten flour around my sister's gluten free kitchen. There were separate butters and jams for each and the gluten and gluten free rolls were put on opposites sides of the table.

Pies: Gluten free pies were made. Gluten pies were mostly bought (with one apple pie being made from a store bought crust). There were separate whipped creams and were put on the opposite ends of the tables like the rolls.

All of this planning satisfied my love of organizing things. And I even got to make little labels to keep things clear and separated.

Some might think that this is a lot of work, but even my  limited understanding of celiac disease and gluten intolerance tells me that even if we all had to eat gluten free rolls and pies, it would be worth it. My sister has written a great piece about what it means to have her husband and son eat gluten free (which I'd love to post here, hint, hint). The risks are not worth the possibility of a crumb of contamination. Plus we all ate good food and stuffed ourselves silly without having any component of Thanksgiving dinner that was important to us left out. And isn't that what Thanksgiving's all about? Oh, family was there too.

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