This post is linked to Gluten-Free Wednesdays.
Okay, once you start reading this post, it will look like far more than five items. Well, you know me … always trying to squeeze in a little bit more, right? I haven’t done a count, but maybe the title of this post should really be 50 Things (Or People) You Need to Know About Right Now. Hmmm, so I “lied.” Speaking of “lying,” did you figure out the required lies and the one truth I posted in response to my Memetastic Award in my last summary post? The truth was that I, Mr. GFE, Son, and Nephew were in a BBC documentary with Michael Palin called Hemingway’s Adventures. It was a very neat experience (and a total lark), but don’t be too jealous … my 5 seconds of fame (no, not minutes) show me mounting my horse (“Sneakers”) at the Montana guest ranch and here’s the kicker … the view is of my posterior. Sigh. Anyway, on with the things you really need to know …
FIRST, it’s probably not news to most of you, but the Gluten-Free, Allergen-Free (GFAF) Expo is happening in less than 6 weeks! This Chicago GFAF Expo is taking place from April 29 through May 1, actually right outside Chicago in Lisle, Illinois. Jen Cafferty is the founder and director of this event. You may know Jen from her blog, Gluten Free Life with Jen, or her role as the Branch Manager for the Gluten Intolerance Group of Greater Chicago. But let’s get to Jen’s brainchild, the Expo itself.
Living Without magazine is the title sponsor for all Expo events. Here are a few excerpts from Living Without’s press release. “We’re thrilled to be uniting with Jen Cafferty to help thousands of people learn more about adapting to an allergen-free way of life, while still enjoying tasty, healthy foods. The Gluten & Allergen Free Expo is home to the Midwest’s largest gluten free vendor fair featuring the tastiest gluten free cuisines and allergy free foods in the marketplace. More than 70 vendors will be showcasing and sampling their products. The vendor fair also features a designated nut-free area, kids’ activities and performers.
This year’s Expo will feature a variety of cooking and baking classes taught by well-respected chefs, nutritionists and cookbook authors, who will offer tips for preparing gluten free/allergen free meals and snacks. There’s also a special cooking class for children, free of the top eight allergens. Participants will enjoy lively presentations, taste the recipes and have the opportunity to ask questions and interact with the experts.”
I am so happy to be participating in the Expo myself, sharing my gfe approach and doing a cooking demo of some popular gfe recipes. I’ll even be emceeing for part of the event. Many other favorites of yours and mine will also be speaking, emceeing, and/or conducting demos and presentations. But wait … it gets better. In addition to the speakers, there will be many of your favorite bloggers and gluten-free advocates who will be either there to offer their apps, cookbooks, or simply attending to enjoy all the gluten-free goodness themselves. The following is just a partial listing:
Stephanie of A Year of Slow Cooking, plus Totally Together Journal and now WebTV (which involves making money at home in your pajamas) and her books: Make It Fast, Cook It Slow (NYT bestseller!) and her more recent budget-friendly cookbook, More Make It Fast Cook It Slow. If you are wondering, Steph is every bit as cute and funny as she appears in her blogs and on network TV. Seeing her always makes my day!
Kim of Cook IT Allergy Free blog and iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch app, “customizing recipes to work with your food allergies” … if you haven’t met Kim yet, you’re in for a treat. That sweet warmth that comes through on her blog is 100% genuine.
Amy of Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free and her new book, Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free: 180 Easy and Delicious Recipes You Can Make in 20 Minutes or Less. Folks are raving over the recipes in Amy’s new book. Read reviews here and here. Don’t forget Amy’s weekly roundup, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, for linking up all your recipes that have been made healthier. Amy and I’ve been talking for a long time on the interwebs, so it’s hard to believe that we’ll actually get to meet finally.
Wendy of Celiacs in the House and her other newly launched gluten-free blog—on a mainstream platform! There’s more on that, and lovely and passionate Wendy in a moment, but I can’t wait to see her again!
Kelly of The Spunky Coconut and her books: The Spunky Coconut Cookbook and The Spunky Coconut Grain-Free Baked Goods and Desserts. Kelly is one of the most creative gluten-free, casein-free, refined sugar-free cooks that I know. Have you tried her chia tortilla wraps? The reviews have been terrific, as they are for both her books. And if you follow Kelly’s blog, she’s as cute as can be, especially with her new mom-to-be glow.
Carol of Simply … Gluten Free and her new book, Simply Gluten Free Desserts (to be released on April 12!). Watch her on QVC on Wednesday, March 23, in the 4:00 to 5:00 pm slot. Other gluten-free products will be featured, too. I just love it when gluten free goes mainstream! Please spread the word. Carol is a sweet dynamo and I can’t wait to see her again.
Heidi of Adventures of a Gluten-Free Mom—Don’t you want to meet Heidi? She’s a hoot, but more importantly, she’s a tireless advocate for celiac/non-celiac gluten sensitivity and can create just about anything in the kitchen. I always look forward to seeing Heidi.
Alisa of the extensive Go Dairy Free website and resource book/cookbook of same name, and her blogs, Alisa Cooks and Dairy Free & Fit. Alisa’s site and blogs offer so much to all and I love that she’s been sharing more and more recipes that are gluten free, too. Looking forward to spending time with her again!
Alexa (“Lexie”) of Lexie’s Kitchen—Lexie helps families navigate the transition to gluten-free, casein-free, refined sugar-free living. I’m addicted to her blog just for her smoothies alone. The most recent one that made me smile was Peter Rabbit’s Smoothie. Her Squashberry Smoothie is also a favorite by color alone, but it’s full of goodness, too. I’ve got some new things coming up on gfe as far as my design and Lexie, who also does lovely graphics design, played a big role in them.
Maggie of She Let Them Eat Cake—Maggie keeps teasing me about starting a new blog together. I think I’ll find out if she’s serious when we meet up in Chicago! Well, that will be after we stop giving each other big hugs. Incidentally, I’m adopting Maggie this month for Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger. I’m looking forward to making at least one of her amazing recipes! Have you adopted anyone yet? You don’t have to be a blogger to participate. Here’s the link to Sea’s (Book of Yum) post where you sign up.
Hallie of Daily Bites–Hallie is such a warm and gentle soul; it will be so lovely meeting her in person. Her spirit shines through in her blog and beautiful gluten-free, dairy-free dishes. She’s a Nutrition Educator, a path she took in reclaiming her own health. Read her latest post on the benefits of coconut oil.
Deanna of The Mommy Bowl–Deanna is known for her endless and amazing vegan cookies recipes, among other things. She’s very creative in the kitchen and she teaches her little guy how to create recipes right along side her!
Ellen of Gluten-Free Diva—If you don’t recognize that blog name, Ellen’s blog was previously known as I Am Gluten Free. Now that we all know she’s gluten free, she’s reinvented herself as the Gluten-Free Diva. Don’t worry though … I’ve hung out with Ellen a few times now and she’s only a diva in the best sense of the word.
Debi of Hunter’s Lyonesse—Knowing Debi is like having a cheerleader in your back pocket. She’s always full of good words and is always there cheering everyone on. Be sure to check out her recent post on menu planning. I’m so excited that I will be meeting Debi and her husband, “Chaz,” at the Expo.
AndreAnna of Life As A Plate—My recent opportunity to meet AndreAnna fell through at the last moment. That’s not happening again. If you don’t know AndreAnna’s blog be sure to check it out. I’m still thinking about her Mexican Pulled Chicken Stuffed Peppers. She’s navigating the gluten-free waters for her whole family now.
Brittany Angell of Real Sustenance–Have you checked out Brittany’s Seasonal Sundays roundup yet? Heads up … Brittany is also hosting April in the Raw—30 days of raw recipes from various bloggers (including me) and an opportunity for everyone to link up their raw recipes. My day to post a recipe for this event will be April 15. Should I make an IRS/tax day-inspired raw dish? Hmmm. Anyyyway, Brittany is a very talented gluten-free cutie and it will be fun to meet her!
Jennifer Harris, the Gwinnet Gluten-Free Food Examiner and Program Chair for Atlanta Metro Celiacs, whose articles are also shared on Gluten-Free Works. After talking for a VERY long time on Twitter, we’ll finally get to meet!
Silvana Nardone of DishTowelDiaries and her book, Cooking for Isaiah—Many have discovered new family favorites in Silvana’s book. I missed out on meeting her at BlogHer Food last year, but that will be remedied soon.
Sloane Miller of her blog, Please Don’t Pass the Nuts!™ (more commonly known as Allergic Girl), and her new book, Allergic Girl. Sloane and I’ve been chatting on Facebook and Twitter; it’s always nice to turn the virtual connections into “real life” ones.
Andrea McCarthy of Rockin’ Gluten Free who also writes for the Chicago area Examiner—Andrea and I met on Twitter and now we also touch base on Facebook. She’s a bright, positive spirit with a big smile. I look forward to seeing her smile in person!
Lauren-Lucille Vassar of The Celiac Diva, which is primarily a vlog (Lauren-Lucille is a kick!), but also a blog.
There are more folks who will be presenting at the info … see all here. Are you a reader who is presenting at or attending the Chicago GFAF Expo? Please let me know in comments if you’re not on my listing so I can update it with your info!
SECOND, if you can’t make the Chicago GFAF Expo, don’t despair. Another GFAF Expo event will be held in Dallas in October … October 1st and 2nd to be exact! That might work better for you folks in that part of the country. I’ll be speaking, doing a cooking demo, and emceeing some there, too. Check out presenters and schedule.
THIRD, a new gluten-free blog, Gluten-Free Food and Recipes, has just been launched as part of the Mother Earth News site. It’s the creation of Wendy Kaho. Yes, she’s our favorite “Celiac” in the House, but she’s getting out of the house much more these days! If you’re in Ohio, you probably also know Wendy as a local and statewide gluten-free activist. She’s out in the community at grocery stores, in the agricultural conferences, on food and wine tours, and more … always ensuring that the gluten-free needs of the community are addressed. Wendy has expanded her presence with participation in national blogger conferences and an appearance on a national radio show and with this new blog is making the gluten free lifestyle accessible to even more people. We so appreciate all you are doing for us, Wendy! You’ll want to read Wendy’s introductory post here because she’s getting a little help from her friends and her readers; this blog will be a great collaborative effort to help those who are gluten free and educate those who may need to be gluten free.
FOURTH, I’ve covered some of the gluten-free cookbooks out or coming out soon above, but not all. Elana’s (Elana’s Pantry) new cupcake cookbook, Gluten-Free Cupcakes: 50 Irresistible Recipes Made Using Almond and Coconut Flour, is due to be released April 26; and another new cupcake cookbook from two more of my favorites, Pete and Kelli Bronski (No Gluten, No Problem), Artisanal Gluten-Free Cupcakes: From Scratch Recipes to Delight Every Cupcake Devotee—Gluten-Free and Otherwise, is due out in June. There are even more gluten-free cookbooks coming out soon, but I’ll wait until I know all the details to announce those.
LAST, for May, which is National Celiac Awareness month, the National Foundation of Celiac Awareness (NFCA) is collecting photos of those with celiac disease/gluten intolerance. The end goal is to have a collage of photos on the NFCA’s Facebook page on May 1—a mosaic that “will put a face on gluten-free needs and bring supporters together in solidarity.” NFCA encourages those who submit photos to tag themselves in the final mosaic to show their pride and draw attention to the cause. To join the effort, email your picture to [email protected] today—you have until April 15th to submit. (Note that photos should be sent as a jpeg attachment.) Please share the word with the rest of the gluten-free community; it’s so very important to spread awareness!