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Vegan Planet: Gluten-Free Meal Roundup

Thursday, June 2, 2011


Gluten-Free Meal Roundup

As I mentioned on FB, we had houseguests last week with various dietary restrictions. As such, our meals needed to be gluten-free, as well as nut-free, bean-free, and mostly soy-free. Thanks to a good selection of alternative ingredients (and a guest chef helping with the cooking!), we enjoyed a wonderful variety of delicious vegan food. Here, then, is a round-up of the meals we had while our friends Carol and Francis, and their daughter Elizabeth, were visiting from Seattle.

Lucky for me, I didn’t have to do much of the cooking, since our friend Francis is a fabulous vegan chef (he’s the former chef-owner of Seattle’s Café Ambrosia) and volunteered to cook many of our meals. (I love it when someone else does the cooking, especially when that someone is a first-class vegan chef!)

For Monday’s lunch I made potato and spinach “quesadillas” using brown rice tortillas accompanied by a fresh tomato and roasted corn salad.

For dinner that night, we invited our neighbors to join us, so we had a houseful and Francis and I split the cooking duties. For an appetizer, I made cornmeal-crusted artichoke hearts. They were devoured almost immediately, so I didn’t get a photo, but here’s a photo of my walnut-crusted artichokes that look similar:

Francis made his signature Caesar salad which was out of this world.

The main dish was his sublime Fettuccine Alfredo (photo is at the top of post) using brown rice fettuccine noodles combined with a creamy sauce and a variety of colorful vegetables. The noodles (Tinkyada brand) had a wonderful flavor and great texture that really held up to the sauce.

For dessert, I made a decadent bananas foster ice cream cake (using Rice Divine vegan ice cream and a gluten-free crust). (I made some with pecans, some without.)

For the next evening’s dinner, Francis made a fabulous vegetable risotto featuring roasted Brussels sprouts, artichokes, mushrooms, and topped with asparagus.

We enjoyed it with a salad dressed with more of that amazing Caesar dressing. For dessert, I made my Fresh Fruit Cake (forgot to take a new pic - link is to a previous post).

Francis also made a wonderful mac and cheese for lunch one day. Served with steamed broccoli, it’s a favorite of his daughter, Elizabeth. The “cheese” sauce for the mac and cheese was a creamy blend of cooked potato, carrot, red bell pepper, garlic, and nutritional yeast with vegetable broth and rice milk. It was as good as any mac and cheese I’ve had. (The ridged elbow noodles were the same Tinkyada brand of brown rice noodles.

On their last night here I made my Crispy Stuffed Filet of Soy over brown rice with vegetables and for dessert, Coconut Custard Pie, made with a gluten-free crust. (forgot to take photos again - links are to previous posts.)

Then it was off to DC where we enjoyed a lovely Thai meal at Thaiphoon, and then off to the airport. We had a wonderful visit with our dear friends and enjoyed a week of delicious gluten-free dining.  Can you tell we ate pretty well?



The next time your company is coming, please invite me. I will scrub floors, wash dishes, run errands and do all of the joe jobs so you can attend to the meals. I'd even make you a quilt. I'd be in 7th heaven. Actually it would be nirvana.
robin, where can we get the mac and cheese recipe and the fettucini recipe? sounds like a delish experience!

Oh yum! At my house we are free of gluten, dairy, soy, meat, and a bunch of other things -- but we eat very well despite that! So your list of menu restrictions sounds very familiar to me. The menu looks fabulous!!
That all looks great! I think a lot of people would say, when they see that list of restrictions, that it is impossible to eat something. But you proved them wrong!

What a spectacular menu! And very creative, given the restrictions you had to honor! Bravi to both chefs!

And once again, the pictures are make-you-wish-you-were-there scrumptious!!
Oh my, Quiltbug, you drive a hard bargain. You had me at "scrub floors" (!)

Sweetpea, I've sent your request (along with several others I've received) for those recipes to Francis. If he sends me his recipes, I'll share them with you!

Valerie, it's interesting that you share many of those same restrictions. I agree, that it's totally possible to eat very well that way. Crazy to think that some people consider a basic vegan diet "restrictive" -- I can imagine what they'd think of these further "restrictions" -- especially after feeding them some of that yummy mac and cheese! ;)

Thanks Sara and Karen for your nice comments about the food!
YUM! Is the recipe for either artichoke dish in any of your cookbooks?

Here's the link to my recipe for Walnut-Crusted Artichokes from my article on

We love them -- hope you do too!
Thanks for the recipes & photos! I'm gluten-free and sometimes vegan and this all looks delicious:)
I can't wait to try out the artichokes and the ma and cheese - yum!!
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