DEAL $15 for $25 at THE MEAT HOUSE

I LOVE buying my meat here! And the groupon makes it even better! Today the deal is $15 for $25 worth of meats and seafood. Click here to see the deal.

I like buying meat from a local butcherie rather than the grocery store. The Meat House offers a wide selection of expertly butchered premium meats, poultry, veal, lamb, and pork, prepared proteins, fine cheeses, fresh produce, hearty breads, prepared side dishes, Boar’s Head Deli products, and other gourmet grocery items, wines and beers (not sure about gluten free though).

My favorite are the marinated meats. Most of the marinades are gluten free, each one is labeled too! Two that pop into my head, that I’ve had recently are the Lemon Pepper Chicken, and the Sundried Tomato Chicken. My absolute favorite are the Meat House and Sweet BBQ marinated steak tips. The Burgundy Wine Steak Tips are also gluten free, among many others. Salmon burgers, lamb meat, everything I’ve had has been wonderful!

Check out this deal, it’s good for all 16 locations!

http://www.groupon.com/deals/the-meat-house-stratham-1?utm_campaign=UserReferral_dp&utm_medium=email&utm_source=uu6714204

Kale Salad with Roasted Acorn Squash

After having a delicious kale and butternut squash salad last week at Audubon Circle I was inspired to make one myself. The first item on my grocery list was kale, and I actually picked up some fresh Kale at the Sowa Farmer’s Market yesterday and since I had an acorn squash from the garden to use, I decided to sub that for the butternut squash. The salad I had last week has sliced almonds, onions and Parmesan cheese. I don’t like raw onions nor am I a big fan of Parmesan but I do wish that I had had almonds in the house, I think that would have added a nice touch to the salad. Instead, to give it a little sweetness, I added craisins.

My version of Audubon’s Kale Salad

This salad is super healthy and loaded with nutrients. If you are looking for a delicious – and healthy – side dish to go with dinner tonight, or I’, thinking this would be a great alternative to green bean casserole at Thanksgiving, you’ve got to try this recipe. It’s quick and easy to prepare (if you microwave the squash)

Ingredients (serves 2)

5-6 Kale leaves, washed well
1 acorn squash (or sub butternut squash)
3 teaspoons Olive Oil
3 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
pinch of Salt
pepper
handful of craiains
3 tablespoons sliced almonds (optional)

How to cook Acorn Squash:

1. Cut the squash in half lengthwise
2. Scoop out the seeds and stringing part in the middle of the squash

Bake: Place both halves cut side up in a baking dish filled with 1/2 – 1 inch water, this will keep the skin from burning to the pan and the squash from drying out. Bake at 400F for 40-60 minutes, until soft. Timing will vary depending on the size of the squash, and the oven. Let cool and the skin will easily peel off

or

Microwave: Lay cut side down on a piece of microwave safe plastic wrap placed directly on a plate. Cook on high in 3 minute intervals until completely softened and cooked through, about 5 to 7 minutes. Again, cooking times will vary upon size.

I added cinnamon and nutmeg to one side – wish I had added it to both sides; it gives it a little extra something!

In the meanwhile…
Cut the stems off of the kale and slice leaves into thin slices. Place slices in a bowl and add half the lemon juice, 2 teaspoons olive oil and salt. “Massage” the kale with your hands, as my friend Meg explained it to me, until it begins to soften and wilt a little, this will take about 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside for another 10-15 minutes.

In a smaller bowl mix together the remaining lemon juice, 1 teaspoon olive oil, and pepper. This will be the dressing. You can use more olive oil if desired, I like to keep it on the lighter side.

Toss the dressing with the kale, then add in craisins and cooled chopped squash. Toss once more so the squash gets a little bit of the dressing too! To make this a meal add sliced almonds and shredded Parmesan cheese …and eat the entire bowl. Or serve this as a side with pork, chicken, steak, or tofu!

Baked Eggplant Tomato and Mozzarella

This recipe is courtesy of my sister Katie. We went to Sowa Market today and bought fresh vegetables, and more gluten free spinach fettuccine, my new obsession. We spent the majority of our walk home talking about what she should make for dinner using the eggplant she just bought. She lives in the North End and has the luxury of fresh cheese and Italian spices right at her finger tips – yes we should all be jealous. So when she got home she picked up a few more ingredients and made a layered baked eggplant dish with tomatoes, spinach and mozzarella, our take on eggplant Parmesan without breadcrumbs, and then put it on top of fettuccine to make the meal complete.

Ingredients:
1 eggplant, sliced into 1/4 inch thick pieces
1 large tomato, sliced thinly
Mozzarella Cheese ( or whatever kind of cheese you prefer)
Fresh Spinach
Spices: Basil, Oregano, Garlic
Your favorite marinara or pasta sauce
Olive oil
Gluten Free Spinach fettuccine

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix garlic, basil and oregano with the pasta sauce.
Spread pasta sauce on the bottom of a baking pan. Layer eggplant, more sauce, cheese, spinach, and tomato. Drizzle olive oil and spices over the top of each eggplant stack.

Cook for about 25 minutes or until the eggplant is soft and starts to brown.

Use the leftover pasta sauce in the pan to mix with the spaghetti, then place the eggplant layers on the pasta and enjoy!  

Gluten Free [Friendly] Food Trucks?

Food trucks are all the rage right now in Boston. Everywhere I look there seems to be a new food truck popping up. I see them parked on street corners everywhere – Kendall Square, Copley, Cleveland Circle, Sowa Market, etc.

Everyday during my lunch break I pass by at least a half a dozen food trucks offering all different types of cuisine – Mexican, BBQ, Middle Eastern, Vietnamese, American, Korean. Everything looks, and smells delicious, but I have been very hesitant about trying anything. You all know how worrisome, scary, stressful, terrifying, anxious it can be to be put in a situation and not know what is safe to eat. Did I capture all the emotions? I for one have definitely felt all of that a few too many times.

No truck is 100% safe; the cooking space is small and cross contamination is inevitable. But there are many gluten free friendly options for those of us lucky enough not to have such a severe allergy or intolerance. With that said, it can still be quite scary ordering from a truck. Do they know what gluten is? Do they know every ingredient in their food? Are they aware of how every single item is prepared and handled? I mean, this list of questions and concerns is endless, no matter where we eat. But don’t fear, I have eaten at a few different trucks and have been just fine. I have an intolerance and can eat foods prepared and fried in the same surfaces as gluten. So, PLEASE always use caution and let the servers know you have a gluten allergy. Many of the trucks use the same fryers for everything so keep this in mind too. I was pleasantly surprised how much more knowledgeable the food truck staff is than servers at restaurants.

My favorite truck is Bon Me (check out my review here), which offers gluten free rice noodle bowls and rice bowls, and the truck is always stocked with gluten free soy sauce! 

I have also tried a salad from Clover and I’ve eaten from The Taco Truck. I really enjoyed the tacos, they were so flavorful, and it was easy to tell all the ingredients were fresh. But, it was a little too spicy for me to be #1 on my list. But I do love their commitment to sustainability; all the meets are hormone and antibiotic-free, and all the to-go packaging is biodegradable and compostable.


BBQ Smith There is gluten in the sauces and rolls. Everything else is safe. They can do any of the food without sauce so meats are safe.

Bon Me Foods
Rice noodle salad with Vietnamese vinaigrette dressing, and rice bowls are gluten free.  If you order the rice bowl, make sure you specify gluten free because they typically put a soy drizzle on it.  They have a bottle of soy drizzle made with tamari to use instead.  Of the standard fillings, only the chicken is gluten free (the tofu and pork have soy sauce in the marinades).  Some of the rotating specials including edamame,  three-alarm chicken and cilantro-peppercorn chicken are gluten free. 


Boston Speed Dog hot dogs are gluten free and you are welcome to bring your own bun.

Clover menu changes daily; sometimes there are gluten free options

Go Fish
The Caesar Salmon as a salad rather than a wrap without the onion crisps is gluten free. The Catfish Taco is on a corn tortilla and 100% gluten free. They have two fryers but use them interchangeably. 


Kickass Cupcakes Gluten free cupcakes are available on the truck. Always a good idea to tweet first to see what flavor(s) they have (and if any are left!)
 

Lefty’s Silver Cart Base menu is not gluten free. Everything is on Iggy’s bread but can offer most of the sandwich fillings on a bed of mixed greens. They also try to make weekly specials gluten free. In the past they’ve had: Watermelon Gazpacho, Corn Cakes with Roasted Corn and Tomato Salsa, Chipotle Maple Syrup, and Vegetarian Chili

Mei Mei Street Kitchen  Menu changes but kale salad, torched corn and peach tomato soup are current gluten free options. Always feel free to tweet ahead to ask!

Momo Goose
Fresh rolls and viet pho soup are the only two gluten free options currently. They hope to offer gluten free rice and salad bowls soon. 

Paris Creperie Usually have gluten free buckwheat flour for crepes  

Pennypackers all sandwiches are available as salads or lettuce wraps

Roxy’s Gourmet Grilled Cheese Fries are gluten free, but cooked on same grill as wheat/gluten.

Silk Road BBQ  Grilled meats and salads are gluten-free. All sandwiches we can make as a salad. Homemade sauces are gluten-free. The white bean chili has gluten-free cornmeal in it, and the short rib has corn starch in the gravy.

Staff Meal Taco tortillas are 100% corn. All of the fillings except the Chinese sausage are gluten free. A couple of the crispy garnishes (fried garlic, French’s onions and Fritos) contain flour. If you order food from at the truck, make sure to let the staff know that you have an intolerance and they’ll let you know all of this and prepare your food accordingly.


The Cupcakory has Gluten free cupcakes available on the truck, but they don’t always have them. They use twitter and facebook to post the daily flavors and will let people know if gluten-free is also available. They offer both vegan and gluten-free options upon request for pick-up on the truck, request at least 48 hours in advance. <!– /* Font Definitions */ @font-face {font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-font-charset:78; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:1 134676480 16 0 131072 0;} @font-face {font-family:"Cambria Math"; panose-1:2 4 5 3 5 4 6 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:3 0 0 0 1 0;} @font-face {font-family:Cambria; panose-1:2 4 5 3 5 4 6 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:auto; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:-536870145 1073743103 0 0 415 0;} /* Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-unhide:no; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} .MsoChpDefault {mso-style-type:export-only; mso-default-props:yes; font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"MS 明朝"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} @page WordSection1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.25in 1.0in 1.25in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.WordSection1 {page:WordSection1;}

 The Dining Car The crispy cauliflower is gluten free. The Mediterranean, Honey Truffle Goat Cheese, Grilled Chicken, and Caprese sandwiches can be offered as salads.

The Taco Truck
All of tacos except the pescado and aquacate are gluten free. All tacos are 100% corn.

I know my list is not 100% complete, there are over 20 trucks in Boston and I was not able to get responses from the ones not listed – or they do not have anything gluten free to offer and are therefore excluded from this list. If you have any tips or information to add please e-mail me at jessica.dennis2@gmail.com.

Spinach fettuccine with tomatoes, chickpeas, spinach, garlic and basil pesto

Last Sunday at Sowa Market my sister and I bought spinach fettuccine from Valicenti Organico .

They had so many gluten free options I couldn’t get over it! Dave kept pulling different kinds out of the fridge – all labeled gluten free – for us to check out. He also told us we could call or e-mail ahead of time and place an order we could pick up at the market (They are located in Hollis, NH so this beats driving all the way there just to buy noodles) . I love this because he didn’t have any gluten free ravioli the day I went so I am going t place an order and cannot wait to try it! Ravioli is one food I do truly miss.

The spinach fettuccine is one of the best gluten free noodles I’ve had. The texture was so smooth and took about 2 minutes to cook and had a great flavor.

Recipe:

8 oz Spinach Fettuccine
1 tomato, chopped
3 cups baby spinach
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh minced garlic
2-3 tablespoons basil pesto
1/2 cup canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed

Bring water to a boil and boil noodles for 2-3 minutes. Drain.

Heat oil over medium high heat. Add garlic and saute for 2-3 minutes, until it begins to brown. Add in baby spinach and tomatoes and cook 4 minutes. Add in chickpeas and 1 more minute to allow chickpeas to get warm. Remove from heat.

Add fettuccine to vegetable mixture and stir. Add in basil pesto 1 tablespoon at a time until the desired amount and taste is acheived.

Enjoy!

Great Deal Today – Estragon Tapas & Gluten Free Menu Options!

Check out this deal at Estragon Tapas Bar in the South End.

I Love Love Love that the menu is marked to let their customers know which items contain gluten, dairy or nuts, and which are vegan or vegetarian. Don’t you wish more restaurants did this? I DO!

VG: Vegan      V: Vegetarian      G: Contains Gluten      N: Contains Nuts      D: Contains Dairy

I have been wanting to try this place for a while, I love Tapas and Spanish food, something I miss so much from studying abroad and living in Spain. So you don’t know how excited I was to see this on Bloomspot today!

Bloomspot is offering three deals for Estragon:

$20 for $40 worth of food
$35 for tapas dinner for two ($69 dollar value)
$69 for tapas dinner for four ($138 dollar value)

I’ve bolded all menu items that do not contain gluten. So many options!!

PINTXOS (TAPAS ON TOAST)
Not sure why this doesn’t have a (G) – maybe they have gluten free bread? Maybe they just figure we’ll skip this whole section?

Pan Tumaca con Jamón
Serrano Ham, Tomato-Garlic  7

Queso de Cabra con Tomate (V)
Warm Goats Cheese, Tomato  6

Chorizo
Grilled Spanish Sausage 7

Pato Confitado
House Duck Confit, House Fig-
Balsamic Jam, Marcona Almonds 8

Falda de Buey con Cabrales
Grilled Skirt Steak, Cabrales (Asturian Blue Cheese) Cream 9

Lengua con Mojo Verde
Beef Tongue, Mojo Verde 6.5

Pringá
Beef Shank, Pork Belly, Chorizo,
Bone Marrow 8

Boquerones con Manchego y Tomate
White Anchovies, Manchego Cheese,
Tomato 7

Salmon Ahumado
Smoked Salmon, White Asparagus,
Alioli, Roasted Red Pepper 8

Higaditos de Pollo Salteados (D)
Sautéed Chicken Livers, Golden
Raisins, Sherry, Crème Fraîche 8

Brandada de Judias Blancas y Beicon
Salt Cod –White Bean Purée,
Crispy Bacon 7



VERDURAS (VEGETABLES)

Aceitunas Marinadas (VG)
House-Marinated Olives  6

Tortilla Española (V)
Traditional Spanish Tortilla  6

Garbanzos Fritos (VG)
Crispy Paprika Chickpeas  5

Ensalada con Huevo y Panceta
Artisanal Lettuce, Crispy Pork
Belly, Poached Egg, Dijon
Vinaigrette 10

Patatas Bravas (VG)
Feisty Fried Potatoes  5
   
Ensalada a la Parilla
Charred Romaine Heart, Pickled
Beets, Crispy Serrano Ham,
House Cesar Dressing 10

Coles de Bruselas (D)
Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Chorizo,
Golden Raisins  9.5

Papas Arrugadas con Mojo Picon (VG)
Salt-Wrinkled Creamer Potatoes,
Canary Island Smoked Paprika
Vinaigrette 9


Puerros con Romesco (VG) (N) (G)
Grilled Leeks, Romesco  8
Berenjenas Fritas (V) (G)
Eggplant Fries, Salsa Brava 8

Pimientos Shishito (VG)
Blistered Shishito Peppers, Sea Salt 7

Ensalada con Queso a la Plancha (V) (D)
Arugula Salad, Walnuts, Pomegranate,
Seared Spanish Goat Cheese  12   

Espinacas a la Catalana (VG) (N)
Sautéed Spinach, Pine Nuts,
Golden Raisins  8


Alcachofas Fritas (V) (G)
Crispy Fried Artichoke Hearts,
Alioli  9

Esparragos Verdes (VG)
Grilled Green Asparagus, Lemon Oil,
Sea Salt  9.5

Potaje Andaluz (VG) (N)
Sautéed Rainbow Chard, Butternut
Squash, Chickpeas, Almonds,
Golden Raisins 9.5

Patatas Fritas (V)
French Fries, Alioli, Salsa Brava  7

Pisto (V)
Braised Eggplant, Tomato, Peppers, Poached Egg 10




PESCADOS (SEAFOOD)

Gambas al Ajillo
Sautéed Garlic Shrimp  11.5

Vieiras con Albariño y Azafrán (D)
Seared Scallops, Saffron-Albariño
Cream, Fried Leeks      14.5

Pulpito a la Parilla
Marinated, Grilled Baby Octopus     9.5


Mejillones (G)
Steamed Mussels, Chorizo, Tomato,
Tarragon, Spanish White Wine  12
I bet they could omit the flour if you ask

Albondigas de Bacalao
Salt Cod, Potato, Saffron Fritters 10

Calamares Fritos (G)
Fried Calamari, Alioli, Salsa Brava 12

Pez Espada a la Vasca
Basque-Style Seared Swordfish
French Fries  15


Bienmesabe-Pescado en Adobo (G)
Crispy Adobo Marinated Fish of the
Day 11

Almejas a la Sidra
Little Neck Clams, Serrano Ham,
Caramelized Onion, Cider  12

Arroz Negro
Black Rice, Squid, Alioli  22

Paella Mixta
Seafood, Chicken & Vegetable Paella 29

Paella Vegetariana (VG)
Vegetable Paella  22

 


CARNES (MEAT)

Huevos Rotos con Txistorra
Crispy Potatoes, Two Fried Eggs,
Basque Sausage  9


Pollo en Pepitoria (G) (N)
Braised Chicken, Almond-Saffron-Sherry
Cream, Serrano Ham, Hard-Boiled Egg 12

Flamenquines (G)
Rolled, Fried Pork Loin, Jamón Serrano,
Manchego Cheese  11

Albondigas de Buey (G) (D)
Beef Meatballs, Herbed Brandy Cream  10

Pechuga Villeroy (G) (D)
Goat Cheese stuffed Chicken Breast,
Bechamel, Chili-Peach Coulis  14

Conejo a la Cazadora
Braised Rabbit, “Hunter’s” Stew 14

Revuelto de Morcilla
Scrambled Eggs, Blood Sausage 8

Rabo de Toro
Braised Oxtail, Rioja Reduction  13


Enpanada de Cordero (G)
Lamb Empanada  12

*Hamburguesa de la Casa (G)
8oz Kobe Burger, Manchego, Fried Onion,
French Fries  14 Add Bacon/Fried Egg/
Serrano Ham 1/1/2

*Pincho Moruno (G)
Grilled Moorish Lamb Skewers  14

*Chuletillas de Cordero
4 Grilled Baby Lamb Chops, Garlicky
Cauliflower Mash  21


Croquetas de Jamón o Paella (G)
Choice of Serrano Ham (D) or Paella
Croquettes  10/2.5 each

Panceta (D)
Seared Pork Belly, Calvados Cream  12

Piquillos Rellenos
Braised Goat-Stuffed Piquillo Peppers  12




QUESOS Y EMBUTIDOS (CURED MEATS & CHEESES)

Surtido de Quesos (N) (D)
                         Assorted Artisanal Spanish Cheeses  14                

Jamón Serrano
Serrano Ham  12

Jamón Serrano y Manchego (D)
Serrano Ham & Manchego Cheese  12

Jamón Iberico
Iberian Ham  20
They also have a $1 tapas menu offered at the bar Monday – Thursday (5-7pm), but none of these items are labeled – I will let you know once I go and find out! 
Enjoy and I already bought my deal here: Estragon Deal Hurry because it ends next week!

 

Gluten Free Expo New England – October 21st

I’m so excited for the Gluten Free Expo next month!!
The Gluten Free Expo will be a day-long event for shopping, sampling and savoring GF goodies from more than 85 vendors! I can’t wait to stock up some of my favorite gluten free foods and to discover tasty new items. Check out the list of vendors here: List of Vendors

Click here to register now.