Review: Hansen's Cakes

So, I'm getting married in October in Los Angeles (exciting!). But, along with the excitement comes the stress of planning a gluten free wedding. Everyone has told me that you won't really eat at your wedding, you are always SO busy. I don't care! I want my wedding to be gluten free! :D

The biggest worry is the cake! So, I contact the only GF bakery in Los Angeles, The Sensitive Baker. I love these guys. Their stuff is amazing. Really, it's the best stuff I've found that I haven't made from stratch myself. Granted, the price tag is a little high, but the food is awesome. I've had cakes from here before for birthdays, etc. So I know that this place is great.

I go and talk to the Sensitive Baker. Apparently, they don't really feel comfortable decorating elaborate cakes. They also don't do tiered cakes. Sadness. But, the woman told me that they bake cakes and then send them over to this bakery called Hansen's Cakes. They try to sell me on it by saying that movie stars shop there (which is the most common thing said about ANY store in LA... this is LA people, you can't impress me with movie stars... they are everywhere).

So I made an appointment there at their main showroom, explained that I had Celiac's, and off I went with my fiance.

THE EXPERIENCE WAS COMPLETELY TERRIBLE!!! Do NOT go to this bakery. I have probably never had as bad of an experience with a company in my life!

When I show up, the woman that I met with was insulting. Every idea I had she looked at me like I had said something offensive. I ask for was a two-tiered white wedding cake with a blue ribbon around each tier (I bring a picture from Martha Stewart Wedding, I want something simple). "You want your cake to be white?!?" "You want your cake to have blue on it?" Every time she gave me this horrible face that basically said, "Well, if you want to ruin your wedding, go right ahead!"

Then comes the cake tasting. They bring me a plate that has white cake and chocolate cake (even though their website says that they offer more varieties, as did the Sensitive Baker). I look at the guy who brought me the cake test pieces and ask, "These are the gluten free ones, right?!?" He looks at me and says, "Oh, I don't know. I just got it from the kitchen." I look at him and say, "Well, can you please check because if I eat this and it's not then I will be very sick for three days." The saleswoman tries to get me to go ahead and eat the pieces he brought. Hum... NO?!? I get sick if I eat a piece of lettuce that touched a cruton, there is NO way I'm flat out eating that much flour!

After the guy returns and assures me the cake he gave was GF, we taste it. The cake they served was NOT the Sensitive Bakers. The cake was dry, terrible tasting, and falling apart. I've had cakes and cupcakes from the Sensitive Baker many times and this was not that! A GF cake mix you get from a store is WAY better!

No one could tell me what of the fillings was gluten free and each person I talked to told me something different. I finally talked to one person who actually seemed to know what was going on and he grabbed me a printout of the ingredients for the cakes. I tell him that the cake ingredients don't look like something that the Sensitive Baker would make and that it sure didn't taste like their recipe. He said that they say that they take the cakes from the Sensitive Baker, but apparently they have started making their own recipe!?!

I went and complained to The Sensitive Baker. The saleswoman woman there told me that this was the first that they had heard of this and they were shocked that Hansen's was selling gluten free cake that wasn't theirs (in violation of their contract... opps!). From the sound of it, doesn't look like Hansen's will have the Sensitive Baker's business for much longer. I'm not sad at all.

So I'm currently trying to work out something. My caterer is seeing if he can find someone else decorate a Sensitive Baker cake for. He said that he uses Cake Divas to decorate vegan cakes from a vegan bakery all the time so we are currently talking with them to see if we could work something out.

In conclusion, DON'T go to Hansen's. The terrible reviews they have online are COMPLETELY true! Don't risked getting glutened (and terrible cake) from this place!!!


Recipe Review: Tom Ka Gai

I LOVE LOVE coconut milk. I've been craving it a lot lately. So when I saw lemongrass in the grocery store on sale, I just had to make this Tom Ka Gai recipe. Yummy!

Like most Thai food, this recipe is naturally gluten-free, so there really isn't adjusting you have to do. Finding fish sauce isn't the easiest thing in the world, though (unless you live near an Asian market). Thai Kitchen Fish Sauce is gluten-free and is the one I've always used. Now, I specifically recommend this brand because if you are a true American-born gal like me you don't want to buy any sort of sauce with little fish heads staring back at you. Ew.

Best way to get the most out of the lemongrass flavor is to throw it either in a food processor chopping it slightly or to grind it in a morter & pestle. The food processor is easier, so that's what I did. ;) Makes tiny little pieces of the lemongrass, but since lemongrass is calming on your stomach no big deal. When you cook the lemongrass, the smell will be significant, so make sure to turn on your vent on the stove before you start.

Note to sensitive stomachs: Two things you might have to do to adjust the recipe. Crushed red pepper isn't great on stomachs recently healing from the a new gluten free diet, so I recommend removing that if you are in that boat. Also, bok choy is a member of the cabbage family and therefore can cause significant bloating. So, if that is ever a problem with you, I would replace the bok choy with slivered carrots, snow peas, and/or bamboo.

Note to non-Gluten free peeps: If you are making this for a gluten-free person, make sure that don't have cross-contamination by using new seasonings. If you've used a measuring spoon in a spice container after you've measured out flour with the same spoon, then you will make the person sick. This usually isn't a problem with the seasonings in this recipe, because you normally don't use flour and cumin in the same recipe so the likelihood of you've ever getting flour in the seasoning is small, it's just important to note. Also, never chop the food on the same cutting board you've used to slice bread products on. Make sure all your cooking utensils are thoroughly washed.

Overall, it's a great naturally gluten free recipe to try. Something a little different. :)


Found this website "Gluten free Drinks" that gives recipes for Gluten-free cocktails. Not too bad!


Recipe Review: California Chicken

California Chicken - All Recipes . com

Tonight was the second time I've made this recipe. The first time I made it with Pepper Jack cheese instead of the Monterey Jack cheese that the recipe calls for. This time I used Provolone. Honestly, I like the Pepper Jack the best... but I like food with a kick, so there you go. Also, this time I added garlic, and for as much as I love garlic, I don't think it really added. Many people recommended lime juice, but I'm out.

The recipe is naturally gluten free, so you don't have to worry about changing anything.

Note to newbies: If you have onion powder, make sure that you've never dipped a teaspoon that you might have just dipped into flour in a previous recipe. If you are worried, I think you could totally replace the onion powder with chopped onions that you discard.

Tip: If you have avocado left over, make sure to store it with the avocado pit. The pit keeps the avocado from turning brown.



Sorry for the long time in between posts. I've had a lot going on lately: getting engaged, traveling, and working on two demanding productions... so needless to say, life has gotten in the way of the blog posts.

One thing that I've noticed lately is that friends and family of mine have been asking me for good naturally gluten free recipes for them to cook when I'm coming over (with the engagement and all). I realize that I don't know what to tell them! I try so many recipes, but I hardly do them more than once, so I forget about them.

Now, I can cook, but I don't claim to be a chef. There are a TON of wonderful gluten free blogs out there that have original recipes on them.

This is NOT one of those blogs.

Instead, I've come up with the idea of posting recipes that I find online that I liked and telling you how I modified them to be gluten free. Honestly, some of the best meals I've made were recipes that contained gluten where I replaced a few ingredients. It's normally easier than trying out a gluten free recipe that no one but the blog poster has ever made.

So, I hope this helps!



I called the Heniz company a few days ago to inquire about one of their products and they said that they could email me a list of all of their products that don't contain gluten. So, here it is! Enjoy!

April 6, 2009

Dear Valued Consumer,

Thank you for your interest in Heinz Products. We certainly understand how difficult it can be to find foods that meet the requirements of a restricted diet.

As you requested, the following is a listing of all of our products that do NOT have gluten containing ingredients. If the product you asked about is not on this list, then it may contain gluten containing ingredients. Also, please note that recipes can change without notice. Therefore, we recommend you always check the ingredient statement on the label.

Heinz BBQ Sauces (Original, Chicken & Rib, Garlic, Honey Garlic Only)
Heinz Chili Sauce
Heinz Cocktail Sauce
Heinz Horseradish Sauce
Heinz Ketchup
Heinz Organic Ketchup
Heinz Reduced Sugar Ketchup
Heinz One-Carb Ketchup
Heinz No-Sodium Added Ketchup
Heinz Hot and Spicy Ketchup Kick'rs
Heinz Mustard (All Varieties)
Heinz Pickles (All Varieties)
Heinz Peppers (All Varieties)
Heinz Relish (All Varieties)
Heinz Sloppy Joe Sauce
Heinz Tartar Sauce
Heinz Traditional Steak Sauce
Heinz Vegetarian Beans
Heinz Distilled White Vinegar
Heinz Red Wine Vinegar
Heinz Apple Cider Vinegar
Heinz Apple Cider Flavored Vinegar
Heinz Red Wine Vinegar
Heinz Garlic Wine Vinegar

Jack Daniel's BBQ Sauces (Original #7, Honey Smokehouse, Hickory Brown Sugar, Spicy BBQ Only)
Jack Daniel's EZ Marinader -- Teriyaki Variety
Jack Daniel's EZ Marinader -- Garlic & Herb Variety
Jack Daniel's Steak Sauce (Both Varieties)
Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce
Lea & Perrins Traditional Steak Sauce
TGI Fridays Salsa (All Varieties)

Classico Red Sauces (All Varieties)
Classico Alfredo Sauces (All Varieties)
Classico Pesto Sauces (All Varieties)
Classico Bruschetta (All Varieties)

769600012 Taquitos, 36 ct. Delimex Chicken
1769600018 Tamales, 12 ct. Delimex Beef
1769600019 Tamales, 12 ct. Delimex Chicken & Cheese
1769600024 Tamales, 6 ct. Delimex Beef
1769600028 Taquitos, 25 ct. Delimex Beef
1769600029 Taquitos, 25 ct. Delimex Chicken
1769600048 Taquitos, 36 ct. Delimex Beef
1769600095 Taquitos, 12 ct. Delimex Beef
1769600096 Taquitos, 12 ct. Delimex Chicken
1769600155 Tamales, 15 ct. Costco Beef
1769600159 Tamales, 20 ct. Delimex Beef, Costco
1769600180 Taquitos, 60 ct. Delimex Beef
1769600186 Taquitos, 60 ct. Sam's Club Beef
1769600214 Taquitos, 25 ct. Delimex 3-Cheese
1769600565 Tamales, 20 ct. Beef, Sam's Club
1769600684 Taquitos, 66 ct. Costco Beef
1769600685 Taquitos, 66 ct. Costco Chicken

13120XXXXX- ALL VARIETIES of Ore-Ida® Tater Tots®
1312001879 Ore-Ida® ABC Tater Tots®
1312000080 Ore-Ida Golden Patties® (9 ct.)
1312000258 Ore-Ida® Golden Fries® (32 oz.)
1312000278 Ore-Ida® Golden Fries® (5 lb.)
1312000286 Ore-Ida® Golden Crinkles® (32 oz.)
1312000291 Ore-Ida® Golden Crinkles® (5 lb.)
1312000296 Ore-Ida® Pixie Crinkles (26 oz.)
1312000377 Ore-Ida® Cottage Fries (32 oz.)
1312000392 Ore-Ida® Southern Style Hash Browns (32 oz.)
1312000428 Ore-Ida® Country Style Steak Fries (28 oz.)
1312000455 Ore-Ida® Zesty Twirls (28 oz.)
1312000469 Ore-Ida® Potatoes O'Brien (28 oz.)
1312000647 Ore-Ida® French Fries (8 lb.)
1312000654 Ore-Ida® Country Style Hashbrowns (6 lb.)
1312000784 Ore-Ida® Steam N' Mash Cut Russets®
1312000785 Ore-Ida® Steam N' Mash Cut Sweet Potatoes®
1312000786 Ore-Ida® Steam N' Mash Three Cheese Potatoes®
1312000787 Ore-Ida® Steam N' Mash Garlic Seasoned Potatoes®
1312000483 Ore-Ida® Golden Twirls® (28 oz.)
1312000484 Ore-Ida® Zesties® (2 lb.)
1312000800 Ore-Ida® Steak Fries® (28 oz.)
1312000801 Ore-Ida® Shoestrings® (5 lb)
1312000828 Ore-Ida® Shoestrings® (28 oz.)
1312000829 Ore-Ida® Shoestrings® (40 oz.)
1312000833 Ore-Ida® Country Style Hashbrowns (30 oz.)
1312000854 Ore-Ida® Hash Browns (5 lb.)
1312000862 Ore-Ida® Country Style Hashbrowns (6 lb.)
1312001012 Ore-Ida® Potato Wedges with Skins (24 oz.)
1312001036 Ore-Ida® Crispers® (20 oz.)
1312001176 Ore-Ida® Waffle Fries® (22 oz.)
1312001190 Ore-Ida® Steak Fries® (3.75 lb.)
1312001260 Ore-Ida® Extra Crispy Crinkle Cut (26 oz.)
1312001280 Ore-Ida® Extra Crispy Seasoned Crinkle Cut® (26 oz.)
1312001417 Ore-Ida® Extra Crispy Fast Food Fries (26 oz.)
1312001461 Ore-Ida® Country Fries (30 oz.)
1312001492 Ore-Ida® Fast Food Fries (4 lb.)
1312008564 Ore-Ida® Golden Crinkles® (8 lb.)
1312008572 Ore-Ida® Golden Crinkles® (8 lb.)

2580002011 Smart Ones Broccoli & Cheddar Potatoes
2580002247 Smart Ones Lemon Herb Chicken Piccata
2580002254 Smart Ones Fiesta Chicken
2580002360 Smart Ones Santa Fe Rice & Beans
2580002904 Smart Ones Creamy Tuscan Chicken
2580002907 Smart Ones Grilled Chicken in Garlic Herb Sauce
2580002915 Smart Ones Home-Style Chicken
2580002918 Smart Ones Chicken Santa Fe

Again, we appreciate you taking the time to contact us. If you need further information, feel free to call us at this toll-free number (1-800-255-5750). Our offices are open Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM until 6:00 PM, Eastern Time.
Heinz Consumer Resource CenterHeinzconsumeraffairs@us.hjheinz.com

P.S. - For your convenience, here's a recipe for a barbecue sauce without gluten-containing ingredients:
Heinz Ketchup Basic Barbecue Sauce
½ cup Heinz Tomato Ketchup
¼ cup water
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons Heinz Apple Cider Vinegar
2 tablespoons Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce
1 teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon celery seed
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon hot pepper sauce
In saucepan, combine all ingredients.Simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes.Brush ribs or chicken with sauce during last 10 minutes of grilling or broiling.
Makes about ¾ cup of sauce.


$5 Triumph Dining Guide today only

Letting everyone know that Triumph Dining Guide is only $5 today only! Go and check it out!

Saw this deal on their Twitter account. If you aren't following them on Twitter, you should be!