Category Archives: GF Basics

Product Review: Foster Farms Gluten Free Frozen Chicken Options

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NOTE:  I was sent two large packages of items to try and share (Foster Farms GF Chicken Nuggets, Foster Farms GF Chicken Strips, and Foster Farms GF Corn Dogs) in exchange for this review.  And, being the genius I am (ha!), I forgot to take a picture of the GF nuggets or the baked items.  I’m sorry!

FosterFarmsChickenStripsIMG_0049

 

 

 

 

Forever ago and a day, I came home to discover two GIANT boxes on our kitchen table.  They were not hard to see as they honestly covered our entire kitchen table.  It was late (for our girls) and the world was dark outside, but upon opening the boxes, we quickly knew we had to head back out into the night.  You see, the lovely people at Foster Farms had sent the sampler pack that I agreed to try.  Unbeknowest to me, however, was the fact that the sampler pack was actually made up of 4 packages EACH of three items.  FULL size!   We do not have a freezer in our garage and our refrigerator/freezer had just been stocked thanks to payday shopping for the month.

Admittedly, a little panic entered my mind when I tried to figure out how to store/freeze a gross of corn dogs and a dozen packages of nuggets and strips.  Thank goodness my DH was around.  We quickly organized and left the house on “Gluten Free Corn Dog Fairy” runs.  We shared the packages with as many of our gluten free friends as we could find at home.  I even brought some to school to stick in the freezer there for a couple gluten free buddies.

I have to say, I didn’t expect a lot from these gluten free items despite the inviting packaging images.  I’ve tried frozen chicken nuggets or strips before and I didn’t go back.  My daughters – especially the chicken nugget lover – refused to eat the other brands that we’ve tried.  However, the sight of the gluten free corn dog box convinced her that she needed one RIGHT AWAY the next day.  I think she was hoping for breakfast corn dogs, but I capitalized on the 4 year old memory span and put it off until dinner.  (We don’t have much time in the mornings before we have to get out the door.  Breakfast is QUICK!)

After tasting all of the offerings from Foster Farms, I have to say this:  WOW.  We REALLY like these!  Especially the chicken strips.  Even our non-chicken eater in the house will not only request these but she does a happy dance when she hears they are on the menu.  We like them so much that we’ve purchased them a few times since we got this sample package and shared them.  (Dang that no freezer in the garage status…LOL)

I especially want to say something about the breading.  So many gluten free frozen breaded products are either doughy (they don’t crisp up) or they rely heavily on polenta/coarsely ground corn meal to make up the “crunch”.  This breading does NOT do that.  As a result, it is delicious and crunchy – and natural breading like you would make (and like I have made numerous times) at home.

Overall, here are our thoughts about Foster Farms Gluten Free Chicken Strips and Nuggets:

  • delicious, whole chicken.
  • moist and well seasoned.
  • perfect breading
  • super convenient
  • just like mom makes (mom being me here…LOL)
  • versatile

Here are the drawbacks:

  • ummm….my freezer size?

Really – there were no drawbacks for us.  The meat is not chicken paste that has been shaped, etc.  They are great!  So great that I used them for ADULT dinner nights too!  I prepared them as the package required and then have made:

  • chicken parmesan (less baking time as the chicken is precooked)
  • lemon-glazed chicken
  • sweet and sour chicken
  • Thai Sweet Chile glazed chicken in lettuce wraps

 

The corn dogs are yummy too, but a bit on the dry side for me.  My daughter doesn’t think so and I am fairly certain if she could read this, she would be annoyed that I even mentioned it.  (However, she eats everything with a liberal lather of either peanut butter (not these, thank goodness) or ketchup (totally these…LOL).

My friends and colleagues who received sample packages with us have not stopped RAVING about them either.  In fact, a vegetarian friend even commented on how “good and high quality”  the chicken looked.  I had called him to share the product with his daughter who is gluten free.  She and her family – and little person – devoured them as well.

I am certain that a local grocer is now carrying these Foster Farms Gluten Free products because there were so many of us requesting them after this sampling.

If you are a chicken eater, try these if you see them.  I think you won’t be disappointed.

Thank you, Foster Farms, for sharing your delicious product with our friends and family!

-Kate and family

Gluten Free Chinese Almond Cookies

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Gluten Free Chinese Almond Cookies

I’ve made this recipe a few times.  I’ve added almond flour, coconut oil, etc but this is the basic recipe that gets devoured.  The end result is a cookie that is crunchy and melts in your mouth.  Just what I was looking for to enjoy with a cup of coffee in the afternoon.  I’ve even made “mini-cookies” for our afternoon tea party with the girls and their dollies.  The smaller the dough balls reduces the baking time (obviously) but it was fun to have doll-sized cookies for our tea party today.

GF Almond Cookies

 

My Love swears these are not Chinese Almond Cookies as I didn’t include almond flour in the final version.  Although technically, I didn’t use a little almond flour in a blend…but certainly not the amount I had put in the other batches.  And while e the other batches were tasty, this one met with picky-kid approval.  They are thinner than the Chinese almond cookies I remember too but they taste the same.  I’ve been vacillating on the title for this post but meh…..it’s on the photo.  Ah well.  :D

Enjoy!

Gluten Free Chinese Almond Cookies

Serves 12-18 cookies
Cook time 9 minutes
Kate Chan Kate Chan

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter or coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup gluten free flour mix
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup sliced almonds

Directions

Step 1 Cream together butter, sugar and almond extract.
Step 2 Add baking soda, salt, flour and egg. (Reserve sliced almonds). Mix well.
Step 3 Scrap dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled (one hour or overnight).
Step 4 Preheat oven to 300F.
Step 5 Shape dough balls with a teaspoon. Set on parchment paper at least 2 inches apart. (The butter based cookies will spread a little further apart than the coconut oil ones.)
Step 6 Pressed a couple sliced almonds into the top of each ball. There is no need to mash the ball down - it will do so on its own while baking.
Step 7 Bake for 9-12 minutes or until the edges are golden brown.
Step 8 Remove from oven and cool. Cookies will be crispy and melt in your mouth when cool.

Gluten Free Everyday Eats – Day 29 & 30

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day30lunch

What is happening to me?  I have developed the exhausted version of myself in the end of July?  Not good!  Time for some R & R – although I think that might just happen late next week as now we have some more OT/PT appointments this week for Zoe.  The good news is:  We are doing all that we can to make sure she is ready to go for Kindergarten this fall.  She’s so excited!

So excited, in fact, that she’s been announcing that as soon as Kindergarten is over, I should “get ready” because she will be “off for college then, Mom”.  Egad!  Please don’t let time fly that quickly by.  

GFEveryday
Day 29

Doctor appointments and craziness meant dinner out.  My dinner picture includes a shot of the girls Tofu Agadashi (my order came without the broth as they used soy instead of tamari – rats!).  It was still tasty.  And I packed some small portable gluten free soy sauce packets in my purse, I was totally ready!

Breakfast:  Turkey wrapped in a Rudi’s tortilla.  Coffee (aka “life blood”)

Lunch:  Recipe testing!  I made a fresh loaf of a recipe I am working on (Quinoa & Honey – gluten free, of course).  Made a sandwich….and forgot to take picture as we raced out the door to our PT appointment.

Dinner:  Sushi!  (I had tamage, spicy scallop handroll, California handroll and some agadashi todu (minus the agadashi…LOL)  This photo shows the agadashi tofu that the girls ate.  Yum!

day29dinner

Day 30

Breakfast:  Did I eat breakfast?  Ha!  That would explain why I devoured lunch!  No breakfast!

Lunch:  Shared an Udi’s Uncured Pepperoni Pizza.  Water.

day30lunch

Dinner:  Spaghetti (Jovial pasta, Marinara sauce, ground beef), grapes, muskmelon.  Water  

day30dinner

Today is the last day of this adventure.  I’m learning a lot about my own eating patterns.  I can see where I could improve. Overall, doing this has made me seriously curious about what others are eating everyday.  Bloggers tend to post something that strikes us or hits our fancy.  I tend to post when I can – but usually after working on a recipe of sorts.

My current recipe endeavor – the perfect quinoa & honey loaf – is off to a great start.  Now  just need more testers!  I wish you all lived closer.  Save me some calories and give me some input!  :D

-Kate