Monday, March 30, 2015

Sanaa's Gluten Free Naan Bread Recipe

Sanaa, which is located in Kidani Village at Disney's Animal Kingdom Villas, is one of my favorite table service restaurants at Walt Disney World for both lunch and dinner.  Last year, a pastry chef at Sanaa developed a recipe for gluten free naan, which is an Indian-style flatbread.  

We love to eat Sanaa's naan with our favorite accompaniments - coriander chutney, mango chutney, and roasted red bell pepper hummus.  My daughters also love to dip it in their butter chicken sauce.  In addition to serving naan with the Indian-style bread service, Sanaa also serves their Tandoori shrimp and their grilled Angus chuck burger on naan for gluten free diners.  They can even use it to make a kids' gluten free cheese pizza.

Gluten Free Naan Bread - makes 8


3 C (420 g) Cup4Cup Original Flour Blend
1/2 C powdered milk
1 1/2 T sugar
1 1/2 tsp instant yeast
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1/3 C Greek yogurt - room temperature
3 T ghee or clarified butter + additional for serving
3/4 C + 2T warm water


Combine the flour, powdered milk, sugar, yeast, salt and cream of tartar in the bowl of an electric mixer, and whisk to combine

Add the yogurt, ghee or clarified butter, and water to the bowl.  Using a dough hook attachment, knead on low speed until well combined.  Raise mixer speed to medium-high and knead dough until smooth, about 5 to 8 minutes.

Spray a silicone spoon or spatula with nonstick spray and scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl large enough to allow the dough to double in size.  Cover with an oiled piece of plastic wrap, and refrigerate the dough for at least 12 hours, and up to 3 days.

When ready to bake, line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper, and spray the parchment paper lightly with nonstick spray.  Set aside.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator, and knead until completely smooth.  Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces.

On a flat work surface dusted with gluten free flour, roll each piece of dough into an oval about 1/4" thick.  Place each piece of shaped dough 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.  Cover with a damp towel and set aside in a warm, draft-free location to rise until nearly doubled in size, about one hour.

Place a pizza stone on an oven rack set about 3 to 4 inches from the heat source.  When dough is almost done rising, heat the oven to 550 degrees.

Working with one piece at a time, place dough on pizza stone and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until golden brown.  Transfer finished naan to a paper towel, and repeat with the remaining dough.

Brush with melted ghee or unsalted butter, and serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

If you don't have access to Cup4Cup flour, you can check out Gluten Free on a Shoestring's post about making mock Cup4Cup here.  I purchase Cup4Cup flour from The Fresh Market, Williams-Sonoma, or

This recipe is similar to the naan bread recipe in Nicole Hunn's Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread, which I heard was the inspiration for the recipe developed at Sanaa.  Nicole doesn't bake her naan though.  She fries it in ghee in a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat until golden brown on both sides.  You can view her cooking technique in an older recipe she has for naan on her blog here.

The naan at Sanaa is my favorite gluten free bread in Orlando.  A big thank you to blog reader Elizabeth for asking the chefs at Sanaa for the recipe,  and for sharing it in my private Facebook group Gluten Free in Orlando.

This recipe for gluten free naan bread was created by the chefs at Sanaa at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge.

You can view Sanaa's recipe for gluten free vegan naan here.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Chefs de France - Epcot

Friday night, we dined at Chefs de France in the France Pavilion at Epcot for the very first time.  I was able to get advance dining reservations for dinner just one day before before we wanted to dine there.  

We had reservations for 5:00, but were seated when they opened for dinner at 4:30, having arrived early in an attempt to avoid the rain.  

Chefs de France is a beautiful place to dine, and I loved the enclosed sun room we sat in on the side of the restaurant.

I did not talk to a chef before ordering, and there is no gluten free menu, but our server was incredibly knowledgeable about gluten free options.  

While my family enjoyed a loaf of French bread, I took a few bites of my tapioca roll, which was heated well, but a little dry.  

My husband and I shared two entrees, which arrived with the allergy sticks that many Disney restaurants use.  The first was the beef short ribs served with polenta and carrots.  This dish is usually served with Cabernet sauce, but because it was not gluten free, we were given an alternative sauce on the side.  I wasn't too impressed with the presentation, but once I poured the sauce over the short ribs, and removed the allergy stick, our meal looked a lot better.  Polenta can be pretty tasteless, but my husband and I both enjoyed the polenta served with this dish.  The short ribs were nice and tender, and well complimented by the tomato based sauce they were served with.  The carrots were beautiful, but not being a fan of carrots, I left those for my husband to eat.  

For our second entree, my husband and I ordered the salmon with braised lentils and bacon.  Our fish was cooked well, and I enjoyed what appeared to be a pesto drizzle on top.  The braised lentils were a huge hit with everyone at the table.  Because there were so many lentils, my husband and I were able to share them with our daughters, who fought over the last couple of bites.  

For dessert, we ordered two of the gluten free options, creme brulee and chocolate mousse.  Both were good, but not as good as the creme brulee and chocolate mousse at other Disney restaurants.  I was hoping for a more intense vanilla flavor and a fruit garnish for the creme brulee, and the chocolate mousse tasted a bit like chocolate pudding.  Chefs de France also had three flavors of sorbet that were gluten free.  

For $40, we could have ordered the Prix-fixe meal that included an appetizer, entree, and dessert, but we didn't want that much food.  The French onion soup and house salad are options that can be made gluten free for the appetizer course.  Both of our entrees were on the price fixed menu along with a third option that can be made gluten free, the half-roasted chicken with potatoes and broccoli.  Both the French onion soup and chicken were highly recommended by one of my blog readers.  

My gluten-eating daughters shared an adult order of macaroni baked with cream and Gruyere cheese.  I can't remember the last time I saw Emma eat so much food in a restaurant.  My girls loved their entree, which was certainly big enough to feed both of them (the picture shows a little less than half of the pasta they received).

For its French bistro theming and service, I give Chefs de France an A+.  As far as the food goes, we liked everything, and enjoyed trying something new at Disney, but we prefer other restaurants at Epcot, like Coral Reef, La Hacienda de San Angel, Tutto Gusto Wine Cellar, and San Angel Inn.  

Chefs de France, which is not a Disney-run restaurant, has had a spotty reputation when it comes to accommodating special diets in the past, but all the recent reviews I read online, and feedback from my blog readers were very positive.

You can read more about Les Chefs de France, view their menus, and make advance dining reservations on Disney's website here.  Tables in Wonderland can only be used for lunch, so we were not able to get a 20% discount on our meal.  All of the dishes we ordered are on both the lunch and dinner menus, so I suggest going for lunch if you have a Tables in Wonderland card or are an annual passholder.  Chefs de France offers a 10% discount to annual passholders Monday through Friday during lunch hours.

What are your favorite gluten free dishes at Chefs de France?  

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Wheat Berry Cafe & Raw Juice Bar

Yesterday, I had breakfast at Wheat Berry Cafe & Raw Juice Bar in Altamonte Springs.  Don't let the name scare you, because everything at Wheat Berry is gluten free, as well as vegan, raw, and organic.  

I decided to start my day with an elixir, but had a hard time deciding which one I wanted to order, because so many of them sounded incredible.  The coco cacao, which contains cocoa, almond butter, almond milk, banana, maca and honey, is the most popular, but I wasn't in the mood for chocolate this early in the morning.  

I ended up choosing a 16 oz Vanilla Beany, which contains cinnamon, nutmeg, flaxseed, bananas, almond milk, and honey.  It was so delicious, and the perfect choice for an early morning drink.  

I couldn't resist purchasing a package of raw peanut butter cookies made with organic cashews, almond flour, honey, vanilla, sea salt, and peanut butter.  I also couldn't resist eating them as soon as I was done with my elixir.  I thought I would just take a bite or two, but they were so good, I ate them both.  These raw cookies are one of the best peanut butter cookies I have ever had.

While at Wheat Berry Cafe, I ordered a 3 day juice cleanse for next week.  I will update this post with more information about the cleanse after I finish it.  

In addition to cold pressed juices and elixirs, Wheat Berry offers a lunch menu with raw organic salads, and dishes like soft tacos, spinach manicotti, falafel, zucchini hummus and chips, and guacamole and nacho chips.

March 27, 2015 Update

I stopped in to Wheat Berry Cafe this morning to have breakfast.  I ordered a coco cacao elixir and managed to snag the last bag of raw peanut butter cookies, which were just as good as I remembered.  I really enjoyed the coco cacao elixir, but would have preferred it for lunch instead of breakfast.

April 2, 2015 Update

On Monday, I started a 3 day juice cleanse from Wheat Berry Cafe.  You might be wondering why I decided to do this.  The main reason is that I have been eating too much lately and lacking my usual self-control with food, so I wanted to take a break from food and start a new chapter of healthier eating.  

Over the course of three days, I drank 18 bottles of juice and did not eat any solid food.  In between each bottle, I drank 16 ounces of water.  Shockingly, I did not crave solid food at all during this time, and when my stomach started to growl, it was usually time to drink my next bottle of juice, which took away my hunger.  Every day, I drank the following bottles of juice around 7:30, 10:30, 1:00, 3:30, 6:30 and 8:30:  

Juice 1 (today is your day) - kale, cucumber, celery, romaine, parsley, lemon, apple

Juice 2 (you have brains in your head) - carrot, ginger, apple, cinnamon (I don't even like carrots, but I loved this juice and would buy it again when visiting Wheat Berry Cafe)

Juice 3 (why fit in) - beet, cucumber, celery, pear, lime

Juice 4 (smile because it happened) - lemon, purified water, stevia, cayenne, turmeric (This juice had such an amazing spicy kick, which I loved)

Juice 5 (will you succeed?) - kale, cucumber, celery, romaine, cilantro, ginger, apple

Juice 6 (answers are simple) - almond milk, date, lucuma, vanilla, sea salt

Juices 1, 3, and 5 were not my favorites because I don't like the taste of celery.  They weren't hard to drink, but I would not buy them when stopping in at Wheat Berry Cafe.  I loved juice 2 and 4, and looked forward to drinking them every day.  Juice 6 was a nice way to end the day, except on the last night of my cleanse, when it seemed to throw my intestinal tract into chaos.  I felt incredibly good on the juice cleanse, except the last night.  I was able to exercise two hours every day, but it was light exercise - walking, pilates, and arm exercises with light hand weights.  Last night, everything seemed to be rumbling and grumbling on my insides after drinking my final bottle of almond milk, which tasted a little bit off to me when I started drinking it.  Who knows, maybe it was a little off and my body didn't like it, or maybe my intestines had had enough of the juice cleanse.  Because I was worried about getting sick, I took a probiotic pill, and drank a very small glass of kefir, which is packed with probiotics, before I went to bed.  

Would I do it again?  I am not sure, but I do know that I would not do more than a 3 day cleanse.  I lost 3 pounds in the process, and have come off the cleanse committed to eating healthier.  You can read more about juice cleanses on Wheat Berry Cafe's website here.  I did a whole lot of research on juice cleanses, and Wheat Berry seems to be doing it the right way with a mix of vegetable and fruit juices, and almond milk.

June 5, 2015 Update

Earlier this week, my girls and I stopped at Wheat Berry Cafe for a liquid lunch.  We had a huge breakfast at Trail's End Restaurant, so we just needed a little something to tide us over until dinner.  I decided to try the You Make My Heart Glow juice, which is a combination of lemon, apple, and ginger.  It was refreshing and delicious, and just what I needed after a very heavy breakfast.

You can read more about Wheat Berry Cafe on their website here, and on Jennifer's blog Celiac in Orlando.

Wheat Berry Cafe & Juice Bar is open Monday to Friday from 7 am to 5 pm, and Saturday from 8 am to 4 pm.

What are your favorite gluten free menu items at Wheat Berry Cafe?

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Beaches & Cream Soda Shop - Disney's Beach Club Resort

Today, I had lunch at Beaches & Cream Soda Shop at Disney's Beach Club Resort with friend and fellow celiac Jennifer.  

I love the theming of Beaches & Cream, which is made to look like an old-fashioned boardwalk-style ice cream shop on the Atlantic seashore.  

Our server told us that almost any entree could be made gluten free, and that safe sides included french fries and fresh fruit.  

I decided to order the roasted turkey sandwich with smoked gouda, Craisin jalapeno jam, and a side of french fries.  I liked the combination of ingredients, and really enjoyed the sweetness of the Craisin jalapeno jam.  My sandwich had a generous amount of turkey, sliced thick, and was served with a lot of fries, so I could have easily shared this meal with someone else.  I only ate half of it, because I was saving room for a sundae.  I liked my sandwich, but didn't love it, so next time, I will probably order a burger, which was recommended to me by several blog readers and our server.  

Jennifer ordered the Cuban sandwich with ham, pork belly, swiss, dill pickle relish, and grain mustard.  She liked it, but probably wouldn't order it again.  She wanted it to be pressed flat and more crisp.  Both sandwiches were served on GNI buns.

For dessert, we both ordered the No Way Jose Sundae, which includes chocolate and vanilla ice cream, peanut butter and chocolate sauce, peanut butter and chocolate morsels, whipped cream and a cherry.  Our sundaes were prepared in the back, with ice cream scooped from a new container.  

Jennifer loved the sundae and said she would eat it a thousand times!  I loved it as well, and will have to bring my family back for burgers and sundaes.  Beaches & Cream has gluten free brownies and chocolate chip cookies, so the fudge mud slide and the brownie a la mode sundaes can be made gluten free.  The Kitchen Sink, which serves 4, can be prepared gluten free as well.

August 6, 2015

I stopped by Beaches & Cream Soda Shop today to see if they had adopted one of the new allergy-friendly menus being introduced at Disney World this year.

Their new menu does not list the roasted turkey sandwich or the No Way Jose Sundae as gluten/wheat friendly options, but I am sure that if you talked to a manager, those dishes could still be prepared gluten free.

Gluten/wheat friendly entrees listed on the menu include the Angus beef burger, Beaches chef salad, Beaches seafood salad sandwich, chicken sandwich, and chili.  Gluten free Sweet Endings include the brownie a la mode and a sundae with choice of toppings.

I love that Beaches & Cream also has an allergy-friendly menu for their To Go counter.  Gluten/wheat friendly choices for takeaway include a single or double scoop cone, root beer float, and an ice cream sandwich.

You can read more about Beaches & Cream Soda Shop, view their menu, and make advance dining reservations on Disney's website here.

My friend Sarah recently posted a review of the No Way Jose on her blog Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free at WDW, which you can view here.

What are your favorite gluten free dishes at Beaches & Cream?  

Monday, March 23, 2015

Cocina 214 Guacamole

In honor of National Chip and Dip Day, Cocina 214 in Winter Park invited me to sample their gluten free chip and dip options, and shared their guacamole recipes with me.  

We have dined at Cocina 214 many times, but until last week, I had not tried their Guacamole Trio.  

My new favorite dip at Cocina is definitely the mango pineapple guacamole, which combines two of my favorite fruits with their guacamole recipe.

The guacamole trio also includes habanero and blue cheese guacamoles.  The blue cheese guacamole is the only one I didn't sample, because I have never like blue cheese.

My family has always enjoyed the complimentary house made chips and salsas served at Cocina.  One is mild, and one is a little bit spicy.

I also sampled the trio of 214 salsas for the first time last week.  

I really liked the mild fire-roasted salsa, which had a lot of flavor, but didn't leave me breathing fire.  

If you love hot and spicy food, you need to try the salsa verde, which looks so innocent, but packs a powerful punch.  

The habanero salsa had a bit of a smoky taste like some barbeque sauces, and was quite hot as well.  

Thankfully, I had a bowl of Cocina's gluten free queso blanco to cool down my mouth after eating the spicy salsas.  This dip is my daughters' favorite, and we order it every time we dine at Cocina 214.  

Guacamole Recipe


6 avocados - halved, seeded and peeled
1/4 medium red onion - diced
2 T cilantro - chopped
1 tsp black pepper
1 jalapeno - seeded and diced
1 roma tomato - seeded and diced
1 tsp kosher salt
1 lime - juiced

Method of Preparation

Scoop the avocados in a large stainless steel mixing bowl.  Add the squeezed lime juice and coat the avocados.  Fold in the remaining ingredients and mash them all together.

Let the guacamole sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.

Garnish with a chip and/or lime wedge.

Guacamole Trio Recipe


6 oz guacamole
1/2 oz habanero - thinly sliced
1/2 oz blue cheese - crumbled
1/4 oz mango - finely diced
1/4 oz pineapple - finely diced

Method of Preparation

Portion out 2 oz of guacamole into three bowls.  In each bowl, stir in each ingredient separately - habaneros in one, blue cheese in another, and mango and pineapple in the third.  Plate with a garnish of the appropriate mix on top - one habanero slice, 1 small piece of blue cheese, 1 piece of each fruit.

A big thank you to Cocina 214 for sharing their guacamole recipes, and inviting me to sample their chips and dips.

You can read my review of Cocina 214 in Winter Park here.

I was invited to dine at Cocina 214 last week to sample all of their gluten free chips and dips.  Our meals were provided to us, compliments of Cocina, but the opinions in this review are entirely my own.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Be Our Guest Breakfast - Magic Kingdom

Yesterday, we dined at Be Our Guest Restaurant in the Magic Kingdom on the first day of their new breakfast service, which is in a testing phase from March 20th to July 18th.  (Update - breakfast at Be Our Guest is now a permanent offering)  Breakfast, like lunch, is a quick service meal.  Advance dining reservations can be made for Be Our Guest for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, which is a table service meal.  

For breakfast and lunch, you order at a kiosk or with a cast member.  When I entered wheat as my allergy, I was left with 6 adult entrees:  cured meats and cheese with millet bread, open-face bacon and egg sandwich on millet bread, eggs florentine with millet bread, scrambled egg whites with millet bread, waffles, and french toast sticks.  I didn't take a picture of the kids' meals, but I remember seeing choices like scrambled eggs, waffles, and french toast sticks.  Adult entrees are all $19.99, and kids' meals for guests ages 9 and under are $11.99.  This price includes breakfast pastries and non-alcoholic drinks like milk, orange juice, and fountain beverages.  

After ordering, we took our rose to our table so cast members would know where to deliver our meal.  

I decided on the open-face bacon and egg sandwich on millet bread with poached eggs, applewood bacon, brie cheese, arugula and tomatoes.  I really enjoyed the bread, eggs, and thick-cut bacon, but would have preferred my sandwich without the brie.  Unfortunately, changes could not be made to any dishes yesterday, but hopefully in the near future, there will be an option at the kiosks to leave off items like cheese.  

The bowl of fruit that came with my entree included grapes, strawberries, cantaloupe, and honeydew.  

A large plate of pastries, including croissants, muffins, and danishes was delivered to our table, but of course, I couldn't eat any of them, so I asked a cast member if gluten free options were available.  After a couple of minutes, he came back with what appeared to be an Udi's gluten free blueberry muffin.  It was heated perfectly and tasted great, so it was a welcome addition to my meal.

Overall, I really enjoyed my meal except for the brie on my sandwich, which I was able to remove on my own.  I liked that Be Our Guest had so many gluten free options, but right now, the dishes can not be customized to leave off unwanted ingredients.  Customization is available at lunch, so I am sure that it will be available at breakfast soon.  I was also disappointed that frozen waffles are the only option for gluten free diners.  I asked a cast member if the waffles were house made, which she assured me they were, but when our kids' meal arrived, it was one waffle with powdered sugar and a bowl of fruit.  Because the waffle was not house made, I asked for a refund, which they gladly gave me.  I hope that gluten free Mickey or Disney-themed waffles will be available at one of the Magic Kingdom restaurants in the future, which I am sure it will, because Disney does such an amazing job with special diets.  Beauty and the Beast themed waffles would be so much fun at Be Our Guest.  

As far as theming goes, Be Our Guest is one of my favorite restaurants at Disney World, so I was happy we were able to get advance dining reservations for the first day of breakfast service.  All three dining areas of the Beast's royal castle are open in the morning, and you can choose where you would like to sit. 

I am sure that breakfast, like lunch and dinner, will be difficult to book, so make your advance dining reservations 180 days ahead of time, if possible.   You can read more about Be Our Guest Restaurant and view their menus on Disney's website here.  Quick service breakfast is available from 8 am to 10 am.  

Having dined at Be Our Guest Restaurant for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, I would have to say that lunch is my favorite meal there.  It is a less expensive option than breakfast and dinner, and we really enjoy a lot of their lunch options.

You can read a guest review of Be Our Guest for breakfast from King Gluten Free here.

August 4, 2015 Update - Breakfast at Be Our Guest will now be a permanent offering, and reservations for October 4, 2015 and beyond can be made starting August 5th.  I have recently heard that Erin McKenna's Bakery quick breads (toasties) are available at BOG for breakfast.

What are your favorite gluten free options for breakfast at Be Our Guest Restaurant?