Category Archives: Restaurants

CSA and Local Food Shopping: Before I hit the kitchen

Since my last post I have been feeling like spring really is going to come. My indoor seedling starts sprouted with all this sun we have had. I brought in the first blooms from my yard to my kitchen counter for inspiration…this was the first time I really dug the pink countertop in my rental house.

Before I could begin with this challenge this afternoon (yes…the first recipe is coming) I had to do some shopping. Normally I shop in the produce section by first selecting things that are in season and then organic if I can. Sometimes I have a certain recipe in mind. Eating as a “locavore” though proved to be a challenge, because many of these items are not labeled with their origin, only if they are organic or not. Some do say “Grown in the USA”, but that doesn’t help.

I hit the internet and found out about some CSA subscriptions, but I wasn’t sure if I was ready yet to commit to a 6-9 month subscription.  Then in the Eugene Weekly I stumbled upon an editorial with a write-up about, a service that allows you to order produce online and pick it up at the Hideaway Cafe down the street from me! I gave it a try and for $15.00 I picked up a whole bag of fresh smelling carrots, leek, kale, cilantro, and spinach. Not only did it take 5 minutes to click on the veggies I wanted from my computer screen, but the pick-up was efficient and festive. The employees from Hideaway Cafe were setting up for their “outdoor pizza night” in the parking lot; complete with heat lamps, white linens and a large clay oven. On my receipt it even told me the names of the farms where each product originated.

Thanks to the Willamette Farm and Food Coalition, I now have a complete magazine on my table with lists of local farms where I can purchase many more of my groceries like eggs, cheese and meat. I can shop online for produce, and Cafe Yumm is working on finding local legumes and grains. I’m off to the kitchen now….

Here are some of the prices for the CSA farms I found so far:

Groundworks Farm: Junction City $21.00 per week for 26 weeks

Winter Green Farms: Noti, OR $24.00 per week for 19 weeks (with option to extend until Nov.)

Sweetwater Farm: Creswell, OR $20.oo for small/week, $33 for medium, $44 for large (option to subscribe month to month)



Filed under News and Media, Restaurants

“Yumm Bowls” for Holiday Company

One of my favorite restaurants in Oregon is Cafe Yumm, one of the best spots for gluten-free vegetarian cuisine. This local buisness that has been around for 30 years now sells their sauce in the grocery store. Using the sauce makes a perfect quick meal for when you host company during the holidays.  My mom and I recently made our own “Yumm Bowls” while hosting family, which consists of a bowl filled with rice, beans, the sauce and all the fixings pictured here.

If you aren’t here in the Northwest and can’t find the sauce, my mom’s friend, Lisa, gave her the recipe to try the sauce at home. I have not tried this recipe yet, so let me know if it works for you.

Build the bowl with layers starting with:

  • brown rice or jasmine rice (we added in wild rice too)
  • black beans
  • soy beans (edamame)
  • grated cheese
  • olives
  • tomatoes
  • avocado
  • sour cream
  • “Yumm Sauce”
  • Nori (we left this out and it was fine)

Recipe for “Pretty Close” Yumm Sauce

Shopping Cart:

  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1/4 cup soybeans
  • 1/3 cup drained garbanzo beans

Blend these ingredients in a food processor. (I guess I’ll use my blender because I don’t have one). Add:

  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 heaping tsp. curry
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Then blend and add 1/3 cup of nutritional yeast. Hadd a 1/2 cup of lemon juice and up to a half cup of water until desired consistency. Puree until smooth.

Thank you to the owners of this wonderful franchise for a great way to eat healthy when you are pressed for time! Check out their blog here: Cafe Yumm’s Blog


Filed under Dinner Menu: Cena, Lunch Menu: Almuerzo, Restaurants

Hideaway Cafe and Rediscovering Eugene

I am feeling a bit guilty that I didn’t have a bunch of recipes posted for the Thanksgiving holiday, but most of my free time has been focused on our recent move to Eugene.  Yes, we are moving from the big city back to my hometown! It’s funny though, it still feels like a new place, since a lot has changed since I lived here in high school. One of the best discoveries in my first week in this city is a newer cafe that was started by an old high school acquaintance, Mazzi.

I had a wonderful gluten-free scone at the Hideaway Bakery and I was inspired to do a little gluten-free baking this weekend. (More to come later on my success with a Millet Honey bread). I also had the best soy hot-chocolate I’ve indulged in for a long time. My friends and I chatted while Saturday morning shoppers browsed the small market next to the outdoor patio hosting 5 stands from local farms. Even though the majority of the breakfast menu featured their artisan breads, I was still impressed that they had two gluten-free options. If you are ever passing through this fun college town, check out this great, hidden bakery. Looks like they have a good number of restaurants who offer gluten-free menus too!

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Filed under Breakfast Menu: Desayuno, Restaurants

Eugene’s Gluten-Free Restaurants and Markets Hit the News

One can only wish that your family members will jump on board when you make the switch to a gluten-free diet. I have experienced a wide array of familial responses to my new diet over the past 9 years, but I must give the “Most Accepting of My Difficult Diet Award” to my mother. She of all people has embraced the new way of thinking with the most interest and curiosity that makes me gawk each time I go home and open her cabinets. Every time I look, she has introduced new ingredients into her own pantry: flaxseed, a steady supply of nuts, corn chips (instead of Triscuits), and even my favorite Lära Bars! She has even ventured into the amazing bulk section of Market of Choice to try dried lentils and split peas.

Today she called to tell me about an article related to Celiacs Disease and gluten intolerance in the news. The Eugene Register Guard published this article today that highlights a few places in town that are open to gluten-intolerant customers. I didn’t realize that Papa John’s even makes a gluten-free pizza. Thanks, Mom, my biggest fan!

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Filed under News and Media, Restaurants

Dining Out: A Map Resource

Last weekend we hosted some friends from Seattle and we feasted on my gluten-free pizza Friday night. (I’ll post the recipe next time I make it since I forgot to take a photo). When we came back to Portland exhausted on Saturday after a long bike ride we decided to go out to dinner at a Peruvian Restaurant called “Andina”.

I usually eat a little bit before I go out to make it easier to forego the bread appetizer. To my delight, this waiter noticed I wasn’t eating yet and asked me if I was gluten-free. I was shocked that he even knew what that was, and then I was elated when he told me he would go to the kitchen and get me a complimentary order of fried yucca, a root vegetable used in Caribbean and South American cuisine.

I realized right then that I needed to start listing some restaurants on this blog, (starting with Andina) and ask all of you to contribute your favorite places too. Perhaps you have been to a place that offers a special menu. Or maybe you have found a place that uses wheat-free soy sauce? I’d love to find that!

Just click on “View Larger Map” below my Google Map below to add a restaurant where you have had a pleasant experience. When dining out can sometimes be a hassle for people with food restrictions, this resource might provide some relief and enjoyable evenings out! 

Here is another map that the Urban Spoon has put together with some of their top Gluten-Free restaurants!

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Filed under Restaurants