Gluten-Free Monday #2: Gluten-Free Zone

Welcome back to Gluten-Free Monday!  As usual, please link anything related to living gluten free–including recipes, great deals on gluten-free products, inspiration and stories.  Please link back to this post.

We’re into our third week of eating gluten free.  So far we’ve had only two breakdowns–one Boo’s (she finally shed a few tears over missing some of her favorite treats), and one mine (I made the mistake of attending a gluten-free seminar at a health food store.  I would recommend getting your advice from a nutritionist instead!)

The first thing I had to do to switch to cooking gluten free was change my kitchen.  Since I’m not ready to eliminate gluten for the entire family, I needed to create a place where gluten-filled foods could be prepared, and a place to prepare gluten-free foods without fear of contamination.

New Kitchen with G and GF Zones

Here’s what it looks like now, and here are the changes I had to make to get there!

Spice Cupboard Before

Spice Cupboard After

This cupboard is above the gluten zone, and it really needed some TLC anyway.  The spices were spread over a huge area and difficult to find, and stuff was tossed in and tucked in all over.  In the new cupboard, there is a spot for all of the gluten-contaminated stuff used for making lunches, and the spices are all in one small area.  Rearranging the small shoe boxes underneath the riser and using a larger box on top was the key.  Honestly, in going through all of my cupboards, this cupboard now fits about 50% more than it used to, and I now have other cupboards with space to spare.  It pays to go through things once in a while!  I know that I eventually need to get rid of all of my Walmart spices–since they are not guaranteed gluten free.  For now (and since Boo has not symptoms), I’ll stick to replacing as I go.

Prep Area Before

Kitchen Prep Area Gluten-Free Zone

New Gluten-Prep Zone

I moved the flour (which is now in a container in the freezer), toaster, mixer, and blender to the Gluten Prep Zone.  I’m frustrated that I can’t use my kitchen aid for my non-gluten stuff, but I know it has flour all over inside the gears and things.  I think I’d have to take it apart somehow and clean it.  Otherwise, I feel like it rains gluten into everything as it mixes.  I have a new toaster and waffle maker that are “no gluten allowed!”  The gluten-free snacks, and unopened flours and pasta go in the Gluten-Free Zone.

It’s hard to get used to, but I think prepping in two different areas will help me be aware of when I might have gluten on my hands or utensils, and keep me from accidentally getting it into the gluten-free stuff.  I’m cooking gluten-free for dinner, but breakfast and lunch are still mixed.  I’m sure I’ll eventually go gluten-free completely, but for now, this is working.

Now, if only I could figure out what to do about the fridge and freezer!  I just realized this morning that Boo sits between her sisters at the counter for breakfast.  She’s surrounded by Cheerios on both sides.  I should probably change that!

Now it’s your turn.  Please link up your gluten-free ideas!  Next week, I’ll begin sharing recipes.  I already have a few lined up.  (I’ll be linking up all the recipes I try this week for dinner.)

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  1. You have done a great job! I tried cooking separate meals for a while, but now I find it easier to just cook Gluten Free for everyone.

  2. mary fran | frannycakes says

    Thanks for stopping by my blog last week!

    I am going to give you some advice about the Kitchen Aid. You don’t need to replace it. I am using one I call Old Faithful, and it is the one my parents got as a wedding gift, 30-something years ago.

    You have 2 options – give it a thorough scrubbing, or take it to a place that repairs them (I think Sears might still do that), and have it cleaned. Here is a link to an article with instructions for how to replace a gear, but the info about taking apart the mixer & putting it back together is there. You really can clean it and be safe!

    Welcome to the gluten-free community, and if you have any baking or cooking questions, please don’t ever hesitate to ask!

  3. Good job getting that all set up! And good luck with cooking separate meals for everyone; I’m sure it’s a bit of a hassle, but worth it. :-) Thanks for sharing this at The Fun In Functional!

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