The Holiday season includes not only one gift-giving occasion for my family, but three. Alex’s birthday falls at the end of November and my birthday is the first day of Winter, December, 21. You don’t have to remind me that this is also four days before Christmas. I know. My family was always good about separating the two, but inevitably, my birthday has always become wrapped up in the Christmas frenzy. That’s okay with me. I enjoy seeing lights on houses and having a tree and getting those warm, fuzzy, feelings that are associated with this time of year on my birthday, it’s special.
I cherish the tradition of gift giving. It is something I look forward to every year. While I relish in thinking of the perfect present for my sister, mom, dad, husband, dog etc, I realize that some people dread it and may leave it to the last minute. To ease their pain, I’ve come up with a gift guide for the celiac or gluten-intolerant person in their life.
2012 Gluten Free Gift Guide
Gluten free cookbooks – This is especially good for the newly diagnosed because they aren’t able to rely on some of their go-to meals anymore but they are still great for experienced people because everyone needs a little inspiration in the kitchen. Two of my favorites are:
Gluten Free Girl and the Chef by Shauna James Ahern and Daniel Ahern
Gluten-Free Baking by Rebecca Reilly
Baking Supplies – Gluten free baking is touchier than baking with wheat flour and this requires some potentially knew kitchen equipment such as:
A Food Scale for measuring precisely (I like this one because it’s red and festive).
A Silicone Baking Mat to keep dough from sticking.
Toaster/toaster oven – Toasters and their cousins, toaster ovens, are some of the worst culprits for cross contamination. If the whole family isn’t gluten free all of the time, gluten in the form of bread crumbs get stuck in these devices and contaminates the gluten free items. Also, gluten free sandwich bread tends to taste better toasted. You don’t have to get fancy here either, just make sure its dedicated to be gluten free.
Gluten free cooking/baking class – This is a fun way to do something that’s necessary, learn to eat gluten free. Rosario Pino’s in East Rochester has a class in March, Wegmans usually has them, and hopefully I’ll be hosting another one soon! If you want to make a weekend out of it, check out New York City, the Natural Gourmet Institute has classes coming up.
Gluten free restaurant gift certificate – Being gluten free often means eating at home. Take your loved one on a night on the town at their favorite, trusted, GF spot. Make sure though, that the restaurant knows you are coming when you do go, so that they are prepared.
Good luck gifting and Happy Holidays!