This coming Monday we honor our fallen troops and gather with friends and family for Memorial Day. And what Memorial Day celebration would be complete without a delicious meal and shared dishes? Barbecues are so much fun with the sunshine, games and abundance of food. But let’s face it – the typical barbecue food can be pretty unhealthy, especially when you start adding in those chips and sides. If you have food allergies or intolerances it can be even harder.
Last weekend I visited my cousin and her husband and their new baby up in the Bay Area. They love to cook, especially healthy and European-inspired foods (he’s French). On Sunday night they made a delicious and healthy meal that he had apparently dreamed about the night before, and when I came home I was inspired to make it. I love this meal because you can make a large quantity of the stuffing ahead of time and use it to stuff veg or just eat on its own. It is a complete meal with meat, vegetables and grains in each bite – and it leaves you completely satisfied. Not to mention it’s gluten-free and goes beautifully with a glass of pinot noir. It is a bit of a complex and multi-step process to make, but well worth it, believe me! And you’ll have leftovers to munch on for the next few days!
Total Fat: 1g / Total Carbs: 46g / Protein: 4g
One potential pitfall of going gluten-free can be to stop getting enough whole grains in your diet. Whole grains play an important part of a balanced diet, and when eaten regularly and in moderation, can be helpful in lowering the risk of heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers due to their disease-fighting phytochemicals, antioxidants and fiber. Once you cut out gluten-filled pasta and bread, it may seem like all hope would be lost for finding other tasty sources of whole grains. But fear not, the grains listed below are all gluten-free and contain way more health benefits than wheat, rye and barley. One of these grains in particular (you guessed it), quinoa, takes the cake for us, but more to come on that below.
Looking for a festive lunch or side dish? Check out this gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan recipe for quinoa and corn pilaf with pine nuts from Veg Kitchen . We here at the Tasteful Pantry love quinoa – it’s an ancient grain that is packed with protein, is low in carbohydrates, and really absorbs the flavor of whatever sauce you prepare it with. Enjoy!