I don't usually blog about gluten-free food, per se, unless the focus is on dining out or traveling gluten-free. But recently I was sent some great gluten-free mixes from a company based in Amarillo, Texas, called Mixes From the Heartland. So far my family and I have sampled the Chicken and Rice Soup, Cajun Pastalaya Soup Mix, gluten-free flour mix, strawberry dip, and "Impossible Coconut Pie" mix. We've thoroughly enjoyed them all and still have a few more to try: Texas Sausage and Bean soup, the Spinach and Chives dip mix, and the Green Chili Veggie Dip Mix.
The mixes are so easy to make (you usually only need to add 1-3 ingredients to the prepared "dry mix"). For example, tonight I made the Cajun Pastalaya Soup mix which came packaged with gluten-free pasta and a large spice packet. You simply add chicken or sausage (I made it with a little of both), crushed tomatoes, and water. It took less than 30 minutes to make -- start to finish -- and was delicious...a hearty, satisfying, and healthy dish. The Chicken and Rice soup was equally as good (it just needed more water than what the recipe called for). But my favorite so far was probably the "Impossible Coconut Pie" mix. Put the mix and a couple more ingredients into a blender, pour into a pie plate (actually two...the mix makes two pies), let sit for about 5 minutes, and bake. It's similar to a Bisquick coconut cream pie I used to make (prior to our son's Celiac diagnosis) in that the flour (with this mix, gluten free flour!) "falls" to the bottom of the pie plate during baking and forms the "crust." It's so easy, and our son loved it. I took the second pie to a baby shower, and it was a hit there as well. No one suspected it was gluten-free, of course.
So, if you (like me!) don't mind "almost homemade" meals, especially when you're pressed for time, I'd highly recommend checking out Mixes From the Heartland's website for wonderful meals, sides, soups, baked goods, and desserts. It's a great thing to keep in mind, too, when you're traveling and will have access to a kitchen (i.e. if you're renting a condo or staying with family) but don't know what gluten-free items the local stores will have. These items can be ordered and sent ahead to your destination (no need for dry ice) or literally packed in your suitcase. We plan on placing an order soon to try out even more of their great-sounding items. Be sure to post your feedback if you order anything yourself...we'd love to hear from you!