Affairs of Living

Gluten-free, allergy-friendly, whole foods recipes

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Unless otherwise noted, all recipes on this blog are free of gluten, peanuts, soy, corn, tomatoes, potatoes, shellfish, cane sugar, oranges, and yeast. Most recipes are also free of egg, dairy, and tree nuts (if used, reliable substitutions will be provided for these when possible). Check out my recipe index for a full list of recipes by category. 

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Entries from April 1, 2010 - April 30, 2010


Insalata di Pollo con Carciofi - Chicken Salad with Artichokes (gluten free, ACD)

Artichokes are this week's Blogger Secret Ingredient! Since I'm hosting this week's event, I need to post something artichoke-alicious, right?  I have had this post waiting in my drafts section, and since I have been crazy busy this week, and needed an artichoke recipe, it was perfect timing to use it!  Before the BSI deadline on Sunday night, I plan to whip out the fresh artichokes and try something, but this will do for now.

So, here's another vacation meal, like my Fave Fresche, Finocchi, and Piselli Brasate al "Latte" (Fresh Favas, Fennel, and Peas Braised in "Milk").   I was inspired by the River Café cookbooks once again, and decided to transport myself to Italy through my kitchen.  I just can't help it. Italy has invaded my brain!  

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April SOS Kitchen Challenge Recipe Round-Up: Beets

Back in the late 1990s, I was in love with the neo-hippie jam band Rusted Root. One of my my favorite lines from the band's blissed out and drum-filled ouevre is as follows: "All I want is food and creative love."  The line was repeated over wild, primal drumming.   This is the kind of song that sweaty, nappy-haired people in patchwork outfits like to dance to (a description that used to fit me to a "t").  I loved this song and listened to it repeatedly. Thinking back on it, I take pity on roommates, neighbors, my friends...

Although that many bongo drums may drive me into seizures or something these days, I still appreciate the carnal, indulgent message of the song. Really, what better is there on Earth than food and creative love?  Isn't that what we all want?  That what I want anyway, I know that much.  Hmn, are my decadent Taurean tendencies are showing?
What does all that have to do with you?  Well, the response you had to the first SOS Kitchen Challenge was the perfect fusion of food, creativity, and love.   Ricki (my challenge co-host and author of Diet, Dessert, and Dogs) and I were absolutely thrilled and astounded at the creativity and love you all showed for beets. We received a whopping 24 submissions from readers all over the globe!  In fact, I think you created a new genre of foodie-ism: creativebeetlove

Thank you to everyone who participated, and I hope it was as much fun for you as it was for me.  I loved seeing your recipes and getting introduced to so many great bloggers.  Ricki and I are discussing plans for the SOS Kitchen Challenge, so stay tuned - Ricki is hosting next month's challenge, and will announce it next week!

And now, without further adieu, here is a round-up of the incredible recipe submissions.  Get a bib, because you are going to drool.

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Blogger Secret Ingredient Reveal: Artichokes!

Alisa from One Frugal Foodie asked me to host this week's Blogger Secret Ingredient (BSI) event!  I couldn't refuse; this event is always a lot of fun to watch.  Don't get confused, this is a different challenge than the SOS Kitchen Challenge that Ricki and I host!  May's SOS challenge will be posted next week, and our roundup from April's beet challenge will be posted tomorrow!  So, here we go with the BSI.

What's this week's ingredient?

ARTICHOKES!  Artichokes are a healthy, versatile vegetable that provide a lot of nutrition, have a wonderfully unique flavor, and are best in the Spring. They are full of antioxidants, vitamin C, potassium, folate, magnesium, and fiber.  I am a huge artichoke fan, and I always seem to have some around my kitchen somewhere, whether they are canned, frozen or fresh.  Lately I've been on a huge Mediterranean kick, so artichokes seemed like a natural choice.

Show me your recipes!

To participate please submit a recipe featuring artichokes before midnight CST Sunday, May 2nd by emailing Kim at The winner and next host will be announced Monday, May 3rd.

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Happy Birthday to Me: Sugar-Free Chocolate Cherry Berry Cake (gluten free, vegan, ACD)

Happy birthday to me!  Yesterday I turned 28 years old. Wow.  28.

I took the day off work and had a wonderful birthday.  My parents came to town, and we had lunch at one of my favorite restaurants. I took them to my garden and I tilled between my young peas and arugula; I dug my hands in the Earth and felt the cool, damp soil under my palms. Later on, we walked through a local city garden, relishing in the beauty of an unusually early spring bloom. Our warmer than usual April temperatures have made everything burst, and Minneapolis is filled with the sweet scent of flowers, the sidewalks sprinkled with a confetti of fallen blooms.  Walking through the gardens today, I had a revelation. I've been wrong about myself all these years - I always thought I was a Fall person, but that is decidedly not true. I am a Spring person; it makes me feel alive, excited, renewed.  I see hope and promise in Spring that is unlike any other time of year.

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Tuscan Chicken Liver Paté and Paté, Cucumber & Radish "Sliders" (gluten free, ACD)

You know those recipes that knock around in the back of your mind, tormenting and tempting you, but you just never quite get around to tackling them?  I have many.  Olive oil-packed homemade canned tuna.  Potato-free, gluten-free gnocchi.  Really good chocolate cake.  Chicken liver paté.

Yes.  You read that correctly. Chicken liver paté.

I have been dreaming of making my own chicken liver paté for about about two years. I got hooked on paté in France in 2007.  In 2008 I ate amazing paté at a fancy holiday party at my manager's house and almost died from pleasure.  I haven't had liver paté since; store-bought liver paté just has too many things I can't eat.  I've looked up recipes, I've sourced out organic chicken livers at my local co-op, and I've scribbled down ideas. But I just haven't done the deed.

This week the time finally time. Upon seeing this recipe for Tuscan Chicken Liver Paté on Food 52, I knew I had to make it. Anything that includes garlic, onions, anchovies, and capers sounds good to me.  It sounded simple to make and easy to adapt to my needs.  I was a woman on a mission. 

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