A local branch of Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) of North America providing support for
people with all types of gluten intolerances, in order to live healthy, productive lives.
at The Green Corner Store
1423 Main St., Little Rock
Dr. Lisa Hendrix
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We are on a summer break with no meeting in August. However, we usually meet on the Third (3rd) Monday of each month from 6-8pm in the Annex Building behind the Arkansas Heart Hospital (1701 South Shackleford Rd - click for map) in Little Rock.
* Please feel free to bring in home baked (with recipe) or store bought foods you would like to share with the group.
* Drug Emporium kindly donates GF food for us to try at our meetings.
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For more information, contact:
Sherri Clay, President
Upcoming Events w/ Julianne Bitely, Nutrition Counselor
Thursday, August 15th: 5pm-? During “Happy Hour in the Heights,” I will be teaming up with Eggshells Kitchen Company for a gluten-free cooking demo.
Thursday, August 22nd: 6pm at Whole Foods “Gluten Free Whole Protein Cooking Class.” Purchase your ticket for $15, and you can bring a friend for free! Seating is limited so RSVP at Sara.Massana@wholefoods.com
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For more info, contact
"All of my classes are free of corn,
soy, and gluten."
Gluten Free 101
If you would like more details on living gluten free, please contact Anne or LaDonna to arrange a personal “Gluten-Free 101” session.
Little Rock Area
Hot Springs Area
We Want to Hear
We need your input to make this newsletter great!
Send in your:
* favorite GF recipes
* GF product reviews
* restaurant reviews
* GF book reviews
* Kid's Corner story
* your personal GF story
or anything else you would like to share with the group.(Please indicate whether you want to be anonymous or have your first or last name used.)
Please send it to Beaura at
Every year, we ask our supporters to donate money to help us continue to spread the word about gluten intolerance. As you know, Gluten Intolerance Group of Central Arkansas (GIGCA) is a non-profit organization run by volunteers. Would you consider helping us by making a tax deductible gift of $20 or more?
You can bring your donation to the next GIGCA meeting or mail it to:
4 Willow Oak Cove
Maumelle, AR 72113
(If you mail your donation, please indicate if you would like to be mailed a tax receipt in return, and if we have your permission to list your name in our newsletter as a donor, or if you would like to remain anonymous.)
If you have any questions, you can contact Beaura at:
We would like to thank the following person for his donation!
In This Issue:
~ Thoughts from Our President, Sherri Clay
~ Upcoming Meeting Info
~ YOUR Opinions
~ Recipe Corner: Spaghetti Squash
~ Kid's Corner: Coconut Ice Cream in a Bag
~ Other GIG Groups
Thoughts from Our President,
It was exciting to find a gluten free message in the May 6th People Magazine. There was a picture of little Suri Cruise, Tom Cruise's daughter, bringing flourless cupcakes to her school for her 7th birthday. The caption read: "With kids today, it's gluten-free to be you and me."
Wow! What would it look like if children started out with that as their mantra? Can you imagine the misery and diseases that could be avoided? And children can now be gluten free without missing out on a single treat that their friends enjoy - yummy Katz powdered donuts, and Glutino toaster pastries (similar to pop tarts)... a friend even found Pillsbury GF cookie dough in the freezer section of Kroger! I didn't come up with the saying, but it certainly applies. Life is good!
*No meeting in August. Enjoy your summer!
Monday, September 16th, 6:00-8:00pm:
From Shelley Green: I am looking forward to hosting GIG of Central Arkansas! I will show you what we offer in our soda fountain, food department, home, and personal care items that are gluten free. We'll sample some foods and ice cream, and you can purchase something from the soda fountain that evening, if you want, too!
Monday, October 21st: Dr. Lisa Hendrix
From Emily: Did you know that YaYa's has GF pasta [& pizza] options and the new J. Gumbo's [has gluten-free options] as well?
From Mark: My family & I went to the Regal Theater at McCain Mall to see “The Wolverine.” Awesome show! Standing in line at the concession stand with my family, I wondered what in the world can I eat here?! Trying not to hold up the busy line of hungry people and looking hard to find something to eat, my wife asked if they had anything gluten-free. To my surprise they had 4 different small boxes with gluten free snacks. How cool is that! Great place to go!
From Anne on Facebook: I was nicely surprised when I had lunch with some friends at Panera Bread in the Pleasant Ridge Center on Cantrell. I talked with the manager and he opened a book that showed the GF options. There is also a hidden menu of a few items that are not on the board. I was told there is no bread in the area where salads are made. Had a Power Steak Lettuce Wrap. The only problem was they lettuce was not really good for wrapping so I cut it up instead. http://mypanera.panerabread.com/articlestips/article/access-into-paneras-hidden-menu/
From Sheryl on Facebook: I had a great experience at P.F. Chang’s in Little Rock. The staff went out of their way to make sure I had a safe meal and great experience. Even insisting they whip up some GF sauces... because in their words "it just makes those lettuce wraps taste REALLY good".
From Sherri on Facebook: Speaking of good lunch places, my husband and I ate at Dempsey's Bakery today. He had a club sandwich and I had the chicken pot pie. (He is always happy to pay so he can sneak out with a buttermilk cake.) Paula let us sample her new sugar free cake, made with Swerve sweetener.
From Julianne on Facebook: Finally braved Big Orange again. It was a great experience!
From Marietta on Facebook: PF Chang’s sister restaurant Pei Wei also does a great job with a few Gluten Free menu options. Love the GF Sweet and Sour Chicken there. From Sherri on Facebook: I got (Pei Wei’s) GF spicy chicken last time and asked for no spice and it was a delicious change.
From Anne on Facebook: Had a very nice meal at Ciao Italian Restaurant in LR last night. They are very gluten free friendly. They don't have a GF menu but will work with you. I had the Paleo Salmon. They don't have GF pasta, but some sauces are GF that can be served over a hamburger or chicken. I did not try the gelato but was told it is GF.
From Mandy on Facebook: Last night I visited the Local Lime in the Promenade at Chenal. Thankfully, I did not get sick, but it was a nerve-racking experience. Just a heads up to anyone looking to eat there...their online menu doesn't match up with the menu they provide in the restaurant. I also wasn't comfortable with their level of familiarity with the gluten-free status of their ingredients. I have hopes that with time they will learn to be more careful, but for now I'll probably stay away. Too bad because it's a charming little place! From Maryann on Facebook: We have always eaten at Local Lime without a problem. We went in a couple weeks ago and all of the g's denoting gluten free were gone from their menu. When I spoke with a manager he said that they had new menus printed and there were several typos and that they still offered all of their gf foods.
From Jay on Facebook: I went to Blue Coast Burrito once because they advertise that they have gluten-free ingredients. That was all fine and good until I saw them touching the flour tortillas with the spoons and then putting them back in the beans, meat, etc. Needless to say I didn't eat there.
From Beaura: I was excited to find a gluten-free section in the freezers in Maumelle's Walmart. I bought some Glutino bagels (after toasting, they are like the bagels I remember!) and Udi’s bread. In a different freezer area, I also found the GF Tyson’s chicken strips. They were a little too spicy for my youngest child, but overall were tasty and convenient.
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Please send us your thoughts!!!
We would love to hear from you about GF recipes, restaurants, GF products, etc. Just make a comment on our Facebook page or send an e-mail to Beaura (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Spaghetti Squash w/ Swiss Chard & Arugula
1 spaghetti squash
1 tsp + 1 1/2 tbsp light tasting olive oil
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1 sweet yellow onion, peeled and sliced into thin rounds
8 cups rough chopped baby Swiss chard, large stems removed
1 cup baby arugula
1/2 tsp smoked paprika (pimeton)
1 cup shredded Parmesan, Asiago, Romano cheese mix
Preheat oven to 400º.
Slice spaghetti squash in half, remove seeds, and rub the inside with the tsp of olive oil. Sprinkle with a small portion of the salt and pepper. Place the two halves skin side up on a parchment covered cookie sheet. Roast at 400º for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool while preparing other ingredients.
Heat remaining olive oil in a large skillet. Add onions and sauté until clear. Stir in arugula, then Swiss chard. Salt, pepper, and continue to stir periodically. Cook until lightly wilted. Sprinkle with pimeton and mix in.
Use a spoon to scrape the cooled spaghetti squash from the skin. Place in large bowl and stir so that strands break apart. Top the squash with the contents of the skillet. Add the cheese and mix everything together. Serve hot.
In Thriver Words - Save Time & Conserve Energy:
This becomes a quick and easy side dish when you bake the squash a day or two before. I like to save energy by roasting it when I'm already using, or have just used, the oven for another meal.
Coconut Ice Cream In a Bag
(Easy Gluten Free, Casein Free Dessert)
At some point in every person’s life, they should make ice cream in a bag. Turning a bag of liquids into frozen solids in a matter of minutes is pretty awe-inspiring for anyone who’s familiar with how long ice takes to freeze. The feat reaches the level of miraculous when the end result is a bag full of ice cream that you get to eat on a hot summer day.
This past weekend I was in the mood for an experiment, so I decided that we would try canned coconut milk as the base for our ice cream. After all, those sweet kids on the autism spectrum should get to eat ice cream in a bag too! The coconut flavor is discernible but very mild.
5 Minute Coconut Ice Cream
(Yield: 5 bags)
2 10 oz. cans of coconut milk (GF)
5 tablespoons sugar
1 ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups ice cream salt or kosher salt
20-25 lbs. bag of ice
5 gallon-sized Ziploc bags
5 pint-sized Ziploc bags
Combine the coconut milk, sugar, and vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl. Stir.
Fill each of the large gallon bags to the halfway point with ice.
Have the children hold the pint-sized bags open and pour equal amounts of ice cream base into each one.
Seal the pint-size bags, removing excess air as you do, and place it down inside the ice so that the ice cream bag is surrounded.
Put the ice cream salt in a bowl and have each of the children sprinkle 6 Tbsp of salt onto their ice.
Seal the gallon sized bags and then shake, toss, and throw the bags around for 5 minutes, by which time the ice cream should be frozen.
Take the ice cream bags out and rinse them so that little hands with boo-boos don’t get a salt water bath, and then hand everyone a spoon and dig in.
A Few Notes on the Ingredients:
Traditional ice cream can be made from milk, half and half, or whipping cream and the richness of the ice cream increases with the amount of fat. The same principle applies to coconut ice cream. The canned coconut milk contains quite a bit of saturated fat and makes a very rich ice cream. “Lite” canned coconut milk would be the equivalent of half & half. Coconut milk from the dairy section provides the least fat.
While I’m not in the least bit worried about the fat content of my ice cream, especially when it’s coconut fat, the amount of fat does change the mouth feel of the ice cream. We used the full fat canned coconut this time, but I’ll probably try the “lite” canned coconut milk next time just to see the difference. You can also add any sort of flavorings that you want to the ice cream. We tried almond extract and vanilla extract in ours and the vanilla was my hands-down favorite.
GIG of Harrison
Meetings are on the first Monday of each month in the Ginny Hammerschmidt Room in the Durand Center.
For more information contact:
GIG of Northeast Arkansas - Jonesboro
Meetings are on the second Saturday of each month at Mt. Carmel Methodist Church, 4000 Southwest Drive, in Jonesboro from 10am - noon. Find them on Facebook.
GIG of Northwest Arkansas - Fayetteville
GIG of North America
Gluten Intolerance Group of Central Arkansas (GIGCA)