Thanksgiving is a big deal at our house.  Typically we invite over two dozen friends and family members to join us for an extremely ambitious feast, all of which is gluten free and vegan.  Our house is not that big, and our dining area, a subset of the kitchen/living room space, is modest.  So we move the couch and coffee table to someone's bedroom and bring up assorted card tables from the basement and set a large peice of drywall connnecting the various tables to our dining table, and then cover the hole thing with several tablecloths, while orientating the entire structure to run from corner to corner in the room, and presto -- we can seat about 25 people all at one very long table!

My planning for this event actually starts in the summer.  I have already picked, washed and frozen spinach to use in the spinach triangles I plan to serve as an appetizer.  I picked sliced, breaded my large summer zucchinis, baked them and then froze them for the layered zucchini bake (page 45 in my book).    When my tomatoes were abundent, I used them to make a huge amount of marinara sauce also for the  layered zucchini bake and it too is safely frozen awaiting the big day.  I have planted my fall/winter lettuce and it is now getting large and lovely -- and all securely covered in plastic sheeting to assure that I can harvest some for a huge salad on Thanksgiving, (and through the winter too!) which I will serve with my Great Garlic Dressing (page 8) Caesar Dressing (page 9) and Goddess Dressing (page 5) 

A few weeks ago, I dug up a bumper crop of sweet potatoes -- and they are now as my daughter so eloquently put it, "camping out in the basement." where I set up my two person tent, covered it in pillows and blankets and placed and arranged the sweet potatoes on shelves inside with a small heater and a wet towel hanging from the ceiling of the tent and dipping down into a tub of water for humidity.  Sweet potatoes are supposed to cure at 85 degrees and 85% humidity for a few weeks before storing them.

Swiss chard is growing in the garden and I will use it to make my fat free dolmas.  which I also plan to serve as an appetizer, along with my mild white cheeze and rice crackers.

So here is my plan for YOU dear reader of this blog.  Below, I will post my planned menu, and as I create the recipes for it, I will provide post those too -- unless it is a recipe already published in my book, then I will provide the page number.  If it is a recipe already posted on this site, then I will provide the link right here as well too.

I can't guarantee that I will get this project (of posting all the recipes) entirely completed before this thanksgiving.  Also my menu is subject to change as life challenges emerge.  :  ) So do expect this page to evolve, but here goes my current plans for Thanksgiving.


Mild White Cheeze and Rice Crackers
Spinach Triangles
Fat Free Dolmas
Lettuce Lentil Pate Wraps
Sliced vegetables and Tofu Dill Dip

Thanksgiving Buffet:

Tossed Salad with choice of Caesar, Goddess or Great Garlic Dressings
Giant Stuffed Tofu
Shitake Mushroom Gravey
Brown and Wild Rice
Broiled Sweet Potatoes
Layared Zucchini bake p. 46
Cabbage and Kale p. 29
Shepherd's Pie p. 58
Oil Free Cranberry Muffins
Sourdough Bread
Walnut Pate


Chocolate Silk Pie p.64 (this is the full -fat version)
Pumpkin Pie p. 65
Cashew Cream p. 68

About 60% of Americans have the genes that predispose them to becoming gluten sensitive.

Recent research (By Dr. Kenneth Fine) suggests that about half of these people have detectable immunological reactions to gluten, and the majority will NEVER meet the classic definition of celiac disease -- even though gluten IS triggering an autoimmune reaction in their body which may affect many organs or tissues other then the small intestine.

Recipe for these GFCF Penguins is in my book!

Are You Educated on Genetic Engineering?

Biotechnology is the new frontier. Yet, few people in our country right now, have any idea, just how dramatically Genetic Engineering is poised to change our lives. Proponents believe biotech holds the possibility of doing some great things, and I believe it might have some great applications, but there is also evidence that this technology if misapplied or allowed out of the lab/hospital setting, could have significant and even disasterous consequences for our health, and well being. The problem is, there is so much money to be made right now in biotech, and so little required in terms of safety testing, and no requirement for product labeling, that human hubris and capitalism being what they are, I think we are headed for some difficult lessons -- before appropriate safeguards are put in place. I believe at the very least, people should have the option of taking the risk of exposure or avoiding this risk if they so choose. (But that is currently NOT the case.) Please watch the video below (it is less then 20 minutes long) of how one mother (who just happened to be a wall street food analyst) woke up to this issue. Then go explore this site: Seeds of Deception to learn the facts so that you can protect yourself and your family.

Should you avoid Genetically Engineered Foods?

Check this out -- Vitamin D

Many of us probably have suboptimal levels of vitamin D, which can be a contributing factor to the development of many of the related conditions and symptoms more common in those who are gluten sensitive. Watch this video -- It's worth the investment of thirty minutes of your time. I should mention however, that while some authorities consider D3 superior to D2, there is good data that if D2 is taken in reasonable amounts (like 1000-2000 iu daily -- not the huge megadoses that some doctors recommend taking on a weekly basis) that D2 is very effective. (And for someone like me who prefers to minimize any possible exposure to prions which may contaminate animal derrived substances -- of which D3 is one -- this is very good news.)

Dietition Jack Norris has great info on Vitamin D here. Be sure also to read Vitamin D Researcher/MD Michael Hollick's book, The UV Advantage.

Recurrent Abdominal Pain (R.A.P.)

Pre Celiac Disease?

As soon as my daughter could talk she began to report to me that her tummy almost always hurt. Although it didn't become really bad until she was about 8 years old -- this I believe was due to long term exclusive breastfeeding. Throughout her early years, I raised the issue of her chronic abdominal pain with our family doctor on many occaisions, and he would assure me that nothing was wrong, that RAP was very common in children and usually due to emotional issues. When it increased in severity we went to see another doctor -- he thought she might have ulcers -- but that test came back negative and the other tests he ran showed that she was in good health. He thought she was fine too. Eventually I learned about gluten from a friend and well you can read the rest of this story by clicking on the links to articles at the top of this page. However the main point I wish to make here is this: In looking back, it is clear to me now that my daughter -- probably from birth was reacting to gluten. Her fussiness, her greenish stools, her starting to nurse and then pulling off and crying, and then years of tummy aches -- all suggest that gluten was causing her issues from the very beginning. On many occaisions I suspected that wheat might be affecting her -- but its withdrawal never entirely resolved her issues. Now of course I know that gluten is not just in wheat, but also barley, spelt, rye, oats and lots of things made from these. RAP is very common and most the time, it's cause is never found. I would urge anyone who's child is suffering, to explore the possibility that gluten might be the cause of their distress.

Why is Gluten so Problematic?

August of 2009 Scientific American published this very in-depth article on Celiac Disease:

With this quote in it:

"Gluten, however, has a peculiar structure: it is unusually rich in the amino acids glutamine and proline. This property renders part of the molecule impervious to our protein-chopping machinery, leaving small protein fragments, or peptides, intact."

However one thing the article left unanswered. I want to know what is the scientific basis for so many doctors believing that antigliadin antibodies are non-specific and are not (by themselves) indicitive of a problem? The article said that anti-gliadin antibodies are NOT considered specific to celiac disease because they are often found in people who do not have celiac disease. But given that it has only been about 65 years that the medical profession has even made the connection between celiac disease and gluten, and only SIX years since the medical profession realized the incidence was at least TEN TIMES more common then they previously thought....why are they still assuming that anti-gliadin antibodies are nonspecific?

Could it be that all those people who do have antigliadin antibodies in their systems, but don't show damage to the villi are still having a dangerous reaction to gluten? Should the definition of celiac disease be altered...or else dropped altogether and simply be part of a condition called gluten sensitivity which may or may not create visible damage to the villi of the small intestine?

Taxonomic Relationship Amongst Grains

Taxonomic Relationship Amongst Grains
Only the Hordeae tribe make their own gluten -- but oats can absorb gluten if they are grown or stored near gluten containing grains.