Friday, August 28, 2009

Giveaway - Senna Cosmetics

I am hosting a giveaway for Senna Cosmetics Lip Lacquer "Lip Pics" kits on my Freebie Fairy website! They are GLUTEN FREE, come in gorgeous colors, and are not tested on animals.

To Enter:

Visit my Freebie Fairy website and follow the easy entry instructions.

*Giveaway open to US readers only

*Giveaway ends on September 4, 2009 at 10:00 PST. I will select (2) winners at random and announce the winners by September 6, 2009. Winners will be notified by e-mail and will have 48 hours to respond before new winners are selected.

Best of luck!

Giveaway Winner - Ice Cream Maker

The winner of the Deni 5205 Automatic Ice Cream Maker with a Candy Crusher is:

*Shooting Stars Mag (Lauren)*

Congratulations Lauren! I am e-mailing you now. Please respond within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen.

Special thanks to and CSN Stores for sponsoring this giveaway.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Cinde's Gluten Free Spotlight - ZredT

I've been on an iced tea kick lately. It seems to be the only thing that hits the spot, especially on a hot day. I like making it myself, but I don't always have time. I tried the yummiest bottled ice tea recently called ZT. I hate to admit it, but I like ZT better than my homemade ice tea! What makes it even better is that it is actually good for me.

Let's de-code the name:

Z=Zero (Zero caffeine and zero sugar)

T=Tea (O.K., this one is pretty obvious)

Put it together and you have ZT... a gluten free, organic, unique tasting, ice tea that supports health and wellness without compromising flavor.

ZT is made from roobios, a rare herb that only grows in South Africa. Roobios is anti-oxidant rich and gives ZT it's smooth, complex flavor. Each bottle offers a good amount of magnesium and fiber, and is low on the glycemic index. All of these benefits, plus it contains zero caffeine or sugar (without the use of artificial sweetener!). That means guilt free ice tea drinking... all day long!

The company who produces this fabulous tea is called ZredT and was founded by 3 southern women who know their tea. ZredT only implements fair trade practices in their company. They say "Our mission is to enhance the lives of everyone ZredT depends on for its success - from the workers who grow and harvest the roobios we use to the customers who drink and enjoy every bottle of the ZT they buy from us."

ZT comes in 4 delicious flavors: Unsweetened, Lemon, Vanilla, and Ginseng & Honey. Each flavor is made from all natural ingredients (my favorite flavors are the Lemon and Vanilla... so refreshing and not overly sweet!).

Check out these impressive ingredients:

Purified water, organic inulin, brewed organic roobios tea, organic clarified brown rice syrup, and natural flavors.

I highly recommend this delightful, gluten free tea. You can find ZT at select grocery and natural food stores throughout the US. Let me know what your favorite flavors are after you try it!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Giveaway - Automatic Ice Cream Maker from

As much as I try not to think about it, I can't deny the fact that the warm and wonderful days of summer are quickly fading. All winter long we wait for summer, and once it is here we try to grasp its magic in every way possible. Barbeques, vacations, gardening, kids playing in sprinklers, outdoor dining with a good bottle of wine, and numerous other activities that define summer are savored in an attempt to preserve the summer season.

One tradition that my family observes every summer is making homemade ice cream. My mother made homemade ice cream for me during my childhood summers, and now I make it for my family. What better way to bask in the final days of sunshine than with a creamy, delicious bowl of homemade ice cream? Not only is the flavor and texture wonderful, it is made with only a few simple ingredients and no added preservatives. In the past making homemade ice cream was a real undertaking involving hours of cranking, and requiring loads of salt and ice. Luckily ice cream makers have come a long way since then, now automatic ice cream makers do all the work for you in no time!

Now, for the Giveaway! The kind people at have generously allowed me to giveaway a Deni 5205 Automatic Ice Cream Maker with a Candy Crusher to one of my lucky readers. is part of a large family of fantastic internet stores under the name of CSN Stores. In addition to some of my favorite CSN stores are:, and
Now you can prolong the remaining days of summer, whether it be by enjoying homemade ice cream by day or choosing a bottle of wine from your wine racks to share with your favorite person by night. I hope this fun giveaway will make your farewell to summer a little easier!

To Enter:

Visit my newest website The Freebie Fairy and follow the easy entry instructions.


*Giveaway ends on August 27, 2009 at 10:00 pm PST. I will select a winner at random and announce the winner by August 29, 2009. Winner will be notified by e-mail and will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is selected.

Best of luck!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Creamy Broccoli Cheese Soup - Gluten Free

Do you ever have those nights when the only dinner that sounds good is a homemade bowl of soup? We have those nights often in my house, and not just in the winter. One of our favorite comfort soups any time of year is this super Creamy Broccoli Cheese soup. Broccoli and cheese are meant to go together (think peanut butter and chocolate, or Burt and Ernie). When I am preparing this soup I can barely wait until it's done so I can taste it. It is a quick, easy to prepare meal that everyone (including my veggie phobic children) love. I have the ingredients on hand for this at all times and make it at least once a month. Try it... you'll love it!

Creamy Broccoli Cheese Soup - Gluten Free

1 quart vegetable broth (I used Swanson's)

14 oz package frozen chopped broccoli

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (I use sharp cheddar)

3 tablespoons sweet rice flour

1 - 12 oz. can evaporated milk

salt & pepper to taste

Heat vegetable broth in a very large saucepan or a small stockpot. Add the frozen broccoli and cook until tender. Use a stick blender to puree this mixture (if you don't have a stick blender a regular blender can be used if you CAREFULLY puree the hot soup in SMALL batches; be sure to cover blender tightly!). If you have pureed the soup in a regular blender, return it to the cooking pot heating over medium heat. Add the rice flour to the cheese and mix well. Add the cheese mixture to the soup and stir constantly until the cheese is melted and the mixture starts to thicken. Add the evaporated milk and heat through. Salt and pepper to taste. Yield: 4-6 servings.
*Recipe adapted from

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Blog Award!

I was honored to receive the "One Lovely Blog Award" today from Jen at Feeling Better Gluten Free, which I am now proudly displaying on my website. :) Thanks Jen! Jen herself was the recipient of the same award, and it was well deserved. Jen shares not only gluten free recipes but her heart-felt thoughts on living life without gluten. It is always refreshing to read her posts.

I would now like to award the "One Lovely Blog Award" to Cain from The Celiac Maniac. I recently had the pleasure of meeting Cain on the Gluten Free Faces website and reading his unique, informative, and meticulously well written website. I was impressed with the personal feeling that was infused into Cain's obvious dedication to the gluten free lifestyle.

Congratulations Cain!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Cinde's Gluten Free Spotlight - EnviroKidz

Today Cinde's Gluten Free Spotlight is shining on:EnviroKidz: Gluten Free Cereals, Cookies, and Crispy Rice Bars.

If there is one brand of gluten free food I can count on to put a smile on my children's faces it is EnviroKidz by Nature's Path Foods. The cereals, cookies, and crispy rice bars taste fantastic (which makes my children happy) and they are gluten free, vegetarian, and organic (which makes me happy).

My youngest child loves the Koala Crisp Cereal for it's chocolaty flavor and it's ability to stay crispy in milk. Another favorite for my youngest are the Vanilla Animal Cookies, she enjoys taking them for a snack at school or in the car. It is entirely possible that I love the Vanilla Animal Cookies even more that my children because I use the cookies as the main ingredient in my Gluten Free Cookie Crust recipe (and in many other dessert recipes as well). I currently have 8 boxes in my pantry so I will never be out of them when the urge to bake strikes me! My oldest child is crazy about peanut butter and chocolate so naturally his favorite EnviroKidz choices are The Leapin' Lemurs cereal with crispy balls of chocolate and peanut butter and the Choco-Peanut Drizzle or Peanut Butter Crispy Rice Bars. He loves to throw the crispy rice bars in his backpack to eat at school as a snack each day. My middle child isn't picky and loves all of the EnviroKidz products, although she is rather fond of the chewy fruity bits in each bite of the Fruity Burst Crispy Rice Bar. She has also taken to eating the Leapin' Lemurs Cereal dry as a quick on the go snack.

All of my kids appreciate the kid friendly packaging on the cereal boxes and enjoy the trivia, games, and mazes. I admire the fact that EnviroKidz is an eco-conscious grass roots company, and that 1% of the profits from their products are donated to species and habitat conservation or education programs for kids. EnviroKidz states that "Every time you buy one of our boxes with a cute endangered species on it, a portion of the price you pay goes to help. To date, 1MM dollars has helped our partnering organizations with their educational and protection efforts!" Gotta love that!
As a Mom I feel satisfied knowing that when my kids eat EnviroKidz foods that in addition to being organic, gluten free, and vegetarian, most are also made of whole grains and do not contain any trans fat. Since I follow a budget I really appreciate that EnviroKidz foods are reasonably priced and most items are easy to find in regular grocery stores.

By the way... in our house, Mom eats just as much Envirokidz as the children. My favorite is the Leapin' Lemurs Cereal (they make a great low fat late-night snack)!

Stop by the Nature's Path Foods website to learn more about these delicious, healthy gluten free foods and read how this company goes out of their way to protect the environment.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Cherry Chocolate Cookie Tart - Gluten Free

Don't you just love those dessert recipes that make people think you worked for hours to prepare them when really it was a snap to pull together? My gluten free Cherry Chocolate Cookie Tart is precisely such a recipe. No one will ever know you used pantry staples such as Pamela's Ultimate Baking & Pancake Mix, canned cherry pie filling and chocolate chips to create this impressive mouth watering dessert. The cookie-like crust is soft and moist and holds together perfectly for cutting without crumbling. Leftovers store beautifully for days when covered and refrigerated. You can't go wrong with this gluten free delight my friends... try it for yourself and see!

Cherry Chocolate Cookie Tart - Gluten Free

2/3 cup powdered sugar

1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1 egg

1 3/4 cups Pamela's Wheat Free Baking & Pancake Mix (I buy large bags from to save money)

2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 can (21 ounces) cherry pie filling OR equivalent amount of homemade cherry pie filling

4 oz white baking chocolate

2 teaspoons shortening

Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Stir together powdered sugar, cream cheese, almond extract and egg. Stir in Pamela's Ultimate Wheat Free Baking and Pancake Mix. Pat dough into 12-inch circle on an ungreased 12 inch pizza pan (place a sheet of waxed paper on top of dough for easy patting; remove waxed paper when finished patting).

Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until light golden brown. Sprinkle chocolate chips over hot crust. Bake 1 minute longer or until chips are melted; spread evenly. Cool 5 minutes.

Spread pie filling over crust. Heat white baking chocolate and shortening over low heat stirring constantly until smooth; drizzle over pie filling using a teaspoon and long quick motions to create a design (see photos for example of design). Slice into wedges and serve. Cover unused portions and store in the refrigerator. Yield: 8 servings.

*For more great menu ideas visit The Gluten Free Homemaker and click on the "What Can I Eat That's Gluten Free?" feature.

*Recipe adapted from

Monday, August 3, 2009

Cinde's Gluten Free Spotlight - Zeer Select: Online Consumer Gluten Free Grocery Information Resource

Flashback to 2007: My daughter has been newly diagnosed with Celiac Disease. I am clueless as to what foods are safe to buy. Children's Hospital provides me with a humongous 3 ring binder full of ingredients and product listings. I drag this massive book with me every time I go to the grocery store, attempting to look up the status of each product we buy amidst hundreds of pages of information. Shopping now takes 3 hours! I grow to despise shopping.

Return to 2009: I no longer need the "big book" to shop! I have memorized the status of many ingredients and foods. Shopping only takes an hour (hooray!). Once in a while there is still a product that I am uncertain about. I do not buy it. If I remember the name of the product in question I do an internet search to attempt to find company contact information when I get home. I contact the company in regards to the gluten free status of the product. Many such e-mails have gone unanswered. Other companies reply but won't directly answer my question (thanks a lot!). Sometimes I am lucky and get a straight forward reply within a few days. Phone calls to most companies leave me hanging on hold for ages. So much of my time has been wasted!

I wish Zeer Select (an online gluten free grocery information resource) was around in 2007 when our family first went gluten free! I could have ditched the "big book" and instantly found the gluten free status of over 30,000 products in Zeer Select's ever growing database. How stress free my shopping trips would have been if I could have logged on to the Zeer Select website and in seconds found the answers we were seeking. Zeer Select even saves people time by automatically offering a list of safe gluten free alternatives to the products they are researching! Over 500 products are added or updated on the Zeer Select website every week so you are always receiving current information.

Zeer Select's philosophy is smart and simple:


SAVE TIME: Zeer Select saves you time by automatically offering a list of safe gluten free alternatives to the product you are researching.

STAY SAFE: Zeer Select assigns a safety status to every product in their database. You will never need to "guess" if a product is safe for you.

LEARN THE GLUTEN FREE DIET: Labels are read for you! All problem ingredients have detailed descriptions to help you to truly learn how to understand them.

Oh yes... I would have signed up for Zeer Select in a second when I was new to the gluten free diet, and I highly recommend that if you find shopping for gluten free food overwhelming or confusing that you join Zeer Select. The nominal monthly fee is worth the reassurance you will feel and the time you will save. I use Zeer Select when I am curious about a product that I don't have in my home but am interested in purchasing. A quick visit to the Zeer Select site and my questions are instantly answered.

Zeer Select has generously offered my Gluten Free Taste of Home readers a one month FREE membership (offer expires August 31st 2009). This is a great way to check out the many benefits of Zeer Select for yourself. Click here to sign up for your FREE one month trial; you will need this case sensitive code when signing up: GFTaste.

Enjoy Zeer Select... I do!
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