Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Event Preview: Washington DC Gluten-Free Expo

For those of us who follow a gluten-free diet, each and every day is an exercise in second-guessing, label reading, and playing a game of 20 questions any time we want to purchase food or eat out. Whether you've been off gluten one week or a decade or more, vigilance is the cornerstone to staying healthy and protecting yourself. 

While what you eat is an important aspect to the gluten-free diet, it can be exhausting and isolating to eat in such a restricted way. That's where the gluten-free community comes in. Through virtual and IRL networks of gluten-free foodies, medical professionals, restauranteurs, and brands, the gluten-free community enables you to expand your gluten-free worldview through the sharing of knowledge, crowdsourcing of best products, and providing general support and encouragement to get through the joys and challenges of being gluten-free. 

If you live in the DMV area (DC, Maryland, Virginia) and are seeking opportunities to connect with the local gluten-free community, you're not going to want to miss the upcoming Washington DC Gluten-Free Expo & Education Day. Taking place on Sunday, October 6th from 9am to 4pm at the Doubletree Hilton in Bethesda, this fantastic event will feature a full day of education sessions and a vendor hall packed with more than 60 restaurants and vendors. 

I'm excited to attend this year's event, and encourage you to stop by if you're in or around the area that day. Tickets are $15 for children and $20 for adults, and include admission to the expo hall and all educational session (featuring cooking, nutrition, and medical advice panels). I look forward to covering the expo and vendors, and am especially excited to check out new-to-me and local vendors.

For more information, check out the event's website, and purchase your tickets today! 

Until then, check out the event's incredible sponsor list and enjoy this look back at an array of the delicious treats I enjoyed at the 2016 event.

Friday, August 9, 2019

Summer 2019 Metropolitan Washington Restaurant Week Gluten-Free Options

I don't know about you, but it really feels like we've hit the dog days of summer. Despite the heat and dramatic rainstorms, summer is actually a quite magical time in DC with farmers markets in full flourish around the area and lots of fun things to do- both inside and outside (including some of my favorite places in the city).

Summer also means the return of Metropolitan Washington Restaurant Week, in which the area's best restaurants offer incredible deals for brunch, lunch, and dinner. Running from the 12th to the 18th of August, it's hard to decide when and where to eat with so many great options. 

As I've been scoping out what's on offer that's gluten-free friendly, I figured I'd put together a list of restaurants with gluten-free options to help you navigate and narrow down where you might want to dine out during this exciting week to visit old favorites and discover new ones.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Celiac Disease Awareness Month 2018 (Giveaway)

May is Celiac Disease Awareness Month, an important annual opportunity to revisit the basics of this autoimmune disease that affects one in 133 people in the United States. As a gluten-free blogger, I am all too aware that despite the advancement of knowledge and awareness about celiac in recent years, there is still so far to go, as this disease is still often misunderstood or worst of all: made fun of. 

The truth is that celiac is very real, and very serious. There's only one known treatment that is effective: eating a strict and consistent gluten-free diet. Where is that gluten found? The grains wheat, rye, and barley.

For those who have been diagnosed with celiac, knowledge is power, because with lifestyle modifications, you can establish a "new normal," albeit one where you are far more intimately acquainted with your food. One of the challenges of celiac however, is that its symptoms are so chameleon-like that they are often misunderstood. According to Beyond Celiac, a leading advocacy organization, it's estimated that 83% of celiac cases are undiagnosed, which translates to thousands who are at risk for complications of the disease: malnourishment, anemia, thyroid disease, and countless stomach-related issues.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

An Ode to Composting

I have my short but shining collegiate journalism career to thank for introducing me to composting and turning me into a hard core composter over the span of a few months. As a staff writer for my university's newspaper, each week was an exercise in covering the random array of lectures, events, and happenings that took place on the busy campus.

One assignment I pulled was to cover a screening of Wasted, a documentary that detailed the massive problem of food waste around the world and offered solutions for this growing problem. In the moment I wasn't moved to make a dramatic shift to composting, but since graduating I moved to Washington DC, where composting has a visible presence at several farmers markets I frequent. The sobering truth about the danger of food waste has stuck with me from writing a story about it, and I have quickly become a fully fledged composting convert. With Earth Day happening tomorrow, I figured it was as good a time as any to share my experience, to show that composting is a little thing you can do to combat the massive problem of food waste.

Saturday, February 10, 2018

2018 Gluten-Free Girl Scout Cookies

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When Girl Scout troops are hawking their irresistible cookies in front of local supermarkets and all-office emails are sent around when a coworker's daughter is selling cookies, you know it's that special season: Girl Scout cookie time! 

For years celiacs and the gluten-adverse have had to skip out on this annual frenzy, but in recent years, gluten-free cookies have been introduced so that everyone can join in on the fun. Made with care to ensure they truly are free from gluten, these gluten-free cookies come with an added bonus of boosting girls' business skills- what more could you ask of a simple cookie? 

The only downside to these gluten-free Girl Scout cookies is that they are not dairy-free, which is why this post is less of a review and more of a PSA. I hope in the future that the Girl Scouts (and the bakeries that create these much sought after cookies) roll out more allergen-free options to continue to expand the number of people who can enjoy the simple pleasure of a safe cookie. 

Saturday, February 3, 2018

5 Easy "Set-and-Forget" Gluten-Free Slow Cooker Meals

Winter is settled in and while the days are short, my workdays are long, which means I'm too mentally and physically tired to cook up a creative meal when I get home from work. 

During times like this my slow cooker has become my best friend, as it patiently cooks a comforting meal over several hours, which is such a wonderful thing to come home to when I'm cold and hungry! 

Slow cooker meals are quite conducive to special diets, as it's easy to choose real ingredients and customize according to restrictions and preferences. 

I am not in the business of creating recipes (restaurant and product reviews are more my beat), so I turn to other blogs and websites for inspiration in the kitchen. This post is a round of recipes I have come to love for their simplicity, and ability to deliver for simple weeknights or weekend gatherings with friends. 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Instacart Review (Promo Code)

Grocery shopping is one of those tasks you have to do day in and day out no matter how busy your week may be or how lengthy your to-do list is. While delivery services like Amazon and Vitacost can help fill the gap for nonperishable foods, there's no escaping going to the store for fresh produce and other perishable products.

Luckily, Instacart is a great way to simplify the grocery shopping process. In fact, you don't even need to leave the house to use it! Simply shop, set the delivery date, then rest easy knowing that you can cross off one more task of your to-do list.