Bridal Shower Menu

One of my best friends that I’ve known since sophomore year of high school is getting married in August. Her theme is the Avengers and Mumika is working on my Iron Man themed dress.

When Kim asked me to ask Mumika to host the Houston bridal shower, I knew Mumika would be quite happy to do so. That and because we come from the world of engineers, we know how to host parties that her mom and friends are used. That and I love party planning. It soothes me somehow.

My goal is to make this bridal shower epic and more a modern tea party minus the tea. Something classic with elegant food.

BRIDAL PARTY MENU

Savory
Bruschetta
Asian meatballs
Greek hummus dip
Cucumber bites
Cranberry Pecan brie crostini
Chicken salad in lettuce cups

Sweet
Lemon brownies
Fruit and nutella crepes
Tri melon skewers

Beverages
White peach sangria
Citrus water
Tea of somekind

I have figured out if we will do strawberry tea, regular sweet tea, or raspberry tea.

It took me about an hour to put it all together with the games, prizes, and favors.

Not bad at all.

I was having problems with the chicken component but thanks to Pinterest, I found an idea that could work. My hair stylist introduced me to Pinterest and this whole gluten free thing made me realize that I definitely needed to give in to it.

And everything will be gluten free so that I can eat it

Glutino Decadent Chocolate Cake

You know how you try a product and it’s really good, so you try another product of the same brand.

What you don’t realize is that the high expectations you gained from trying the first product influences your feelings when you try a second product. And, in all honesty, it dooms the new product to fail from the start.

A long time ago, Mumika and I tried a gluten free chocolate cake box mix. Why? I don’t know. Probably to try something different. This was before gluten free became all the rage that it is today. It was one of those, it’s supposedly healthy, why not try it? What’s the worse that can happen?

It was the most god awful tasting chocolate cardboard posing as cake I had ever had. Flash foward a good few years, technology, and the time to create a better method of gluten free flower blending, and one would think there would be a better tasting cake.

One would think.

I ended up making cupcakes instead. The thought process was chocolate cake with a strawberry mascarpone cheese frosting, but that totally didn’t happen.

First and foremost, when making this box mix, the batter was extremely runny to the point that I feared it would end up being a hot soupy mess. Also, it had to be baked longer causing the cake to dry out. On top of that, the cake was extremely dense and not that fluffy awesomeness we all know and love of cake.

In a nutshell, it failed on so many levels that when it came to taste, I didn’t really care that much. It tasted better than chocolate cardboard but not by much.

Which means, I’ll have to experiment with different flours or flour blends before finding the perfect cake.

Grrrr……

I would try to make this again but I fear it would end the same causing me to waste money on it. Maybe I’ll try a different cake box mix next time.

Martha White Gluten Free Blueberry Muffin Pouch

As I was walking down the baking aisle at HEB, looking for anything gluten free, I came across Martha White Gluten Free Blueberry Muffin mix pouch thing.

I hate muffin pouches. They are as pointless as cookie pouch mixes. But I was like, you know what, what the hell, lets try it. It was only $1.50, how could I say no.

When I got home and looked at the ingredients, much to my horror, I realized my mistake. On the list of ingredients, I found artificial blueberry bits. What.the.FUCK does that mean?

Seriously?

I don’t get it. Why claim there’s blueberry, if there aren’t blueberries in the bloddy thing.

But I made it anyway, because this is all about trying new things and gaining a better understanding and what have you. Although, part of my understanding now is that homemade where you physically had fresh blueberries to a muffin mix is the way to go. This way you know that there is actual blueberries in it and artificial, imitation, blueberry bits, pieces or whatever it claims. These so called blueberries is nothing but dye, high fructose corn syrup and sugar. So basically, they are adding extra sugar and calling it blueberries. I don’t know how that works, or even how on earth they get it to remotely smell like blueberries. Must be that artificial flavor or in this case smell.

So yeah.

Um, no. No no no no no. No. NO. NO. no. Did I say no? Because I mean no. No. NO. no. No. Just no.

Don’t do it. Don’t ever do it.

And if someone offers you blueberry muffins and the bits look oddly round and small and questionable and bubbly blue colored melted sugar, kindly say no thank you. Because it’s a facade, a horrible blueberry muffin facade. It’s not real. It never was real. I never will be real. Boycott it. Yes, boycott it.

Sadness.

Glutino Double Chocolate Brownie Mix

As Bryan and I were looking at protien powder, a few weeks ago, I found myself staring at gluten free box mixes. The gluten free area shares an aisle with the fitness health and homeopathic stuff.

Before this journey, I was dead set again the whole box mix crap. But, I had an epiphany as I looked at brownie, white cake, chocolate cake, yellow cake, chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal raisin cookies, banana bread, pizza crust, and pie crust box mixes.

I have no idea what I’ve truly gotten myself into.

I needed to try these box mixes to see if the baked goods of the gluten free lifestyle were even remotely edible. And, there was a coupon. Most gluten free box mixes are an absurd $3.99 and up. The $1.50 off coupon sort of made it remotely worth it.

So I made it.

AND.

Oh.My.God. Most amazing brownie ever created. It’s gooey, collapse in your hand and shape it into what ever yummy of awesomeness. Almost every part of the brownie was the awesome middle part people everywhere fight for and rejoice over.

Screw brownies with wheat in it. They never come out this perfect.

So moist. So chocolatey. You can actually see the chocolate chips in the mix.

Bryan ended up eating pretty much the whole pan in one sitting. He claimed he was saving me from the evil brownies. But I knew better.

What in it? SUGAR, CHOCOLATE CHIPS, COCOA POWDER PROCESSED WITH ALKALI, WHITE RICE FLOUR, POTATO STARCH, CORN STARCH, XANTHAN GUM, SALT.

Hmmmmm. Maybe I can figure how to make this on my own and cut the sugar down. Yep, definitely need to figure out how to do that.

Despite being on a gluten free diet, I’m still trying to figure out how to tweak things. There is always room for tweaking. Always.

But until then, if you have $4 on you and want to make the best brownies in the universe (thus far), go ahead and get a box. You won’t regret it.

Gluten Free pasta round 2

Bryan and I are huge pasta lovers. We could eat spaghetti everyday. Literally.

After the first attempt of pasta, Bryan brought home a different brand to try.

Ronzoni.

This gluten free pasta is amazing. And it tastes better than regular pasta.  The flour blend used is quinoa, white, and brown rice.

I think the biggest thing is that it cooks correctly.

And it works great in pasta based casseroles.

I wouldn’t mind trying Barilla gluten free pasta, but until I can find it Ronzoni works perfectly for me.

Gluten free pasta round 1

Something I definitely was no where close to giving up in the gluten free live I found myself in was pasta.

Luckily, despite living in a small town, I found gluten free pasta. The downside is it cost roughly twice as much.

I already knew this was going to be an issue because healthy food always cost more the junk food. Hence the whole fast food trillion dollars industry. Junk sells because of deflated costs and what will most people pick: a dollar cheeseburger or a seven dollar sit down meal. The cheeseburger because it’s cheap, mobile, and fast to make.

So we get the pasta. The HEB brand and I read the directions. Boil water, put pasta in water, and boil for 11 minutes. Previous to this adventure, I had been warned of the gumminess gluten free pasta possessed.

However, now I know why. The bloody pasta was no where close to being cooked. Therefore, it comes out gummy.

So I cooked it for a total of 20 minutes and ended up overcooking the dammit thing.

Maybe this pasta thing isn’t worth the hassle.  I don’t know. Maybe I got the wrong pasta? Either way,  HEB gluten free pasta is a no go in this journey.