Gluten Free Foodies

Celebrate the foods that you can eat!

Mott Green, Founder of Grenada Chocolate Company Tragic Accident

June 3rd, 2013 at 11:00 am by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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I was shocked and saddened to hear the news this morning of Mott Green, founder of Grenada Chocolate Company tragic accident on June 1, 2013. Grenada Chocolate Company creates pure Organic Chocolate in a factory that is located in the lush cocoa groves of the rainforest in Grenada. Grenada Chocolate Company is an Organic Cocoa Farmers and Chocolate-Makers’ Cooperative.

Mott Green Grenada Chocolate

I met Mott Green at the Northwest Chocolate Festival in Seattle, WA last year. During the presentation I remember hearing Mott say that they are a small scale, small batch chocolate maker concerned for the environment.  They have over 200 acres and grow their cocoa without pesticides, fertilizers or herbicides. Grenada Chocolate Company uses their own cocoa butter to process their chocolate.  Additionally to protect the environment they made their own equipment to process the chocolate.  As soon as the cacao is picked from the farmers, it is processed on site.  This helps to keep the entire business process within the chocolate-farming community so that everyone benefits financially.  The machines they used were also refurbished antiques some of which  they converted to use solar-electric power.  Mott was repairing some equipment at the Belmont Estate, St. Patrick,  storehouse at the time of the accident according to police. 

Grenada Chocolate Company

Mott’s wish and legacy to allow the cocoa farmers to benefit together with the Chocolate-makers will hopefully continue to live on as Grenada Chocolate Company.

To learn more about Grenada Chocolate Company and where you can buy their purely decadent chocolate, website -

Listen to Mott on the video below as he describes his vision and why he started Grenada Chocolate Company

Mott Green, Grenada Chocolate Company and farmers are featured in the award winning film – Nothing Like Chocolate. 

I feel very lucky to have met Mott last year at the Seattle Chocolate Festival.  We watched the award winning film- Nothing Like Chocolate, that he was featured in.  We sat in the back of the room as he gave me little bits and bites of commentary while it was showing.  We had a nice long chat about chocolate. He told me that he saw the future of Organic chocolate growing as more people become educated about the sustainability practices of companies like his. Mott was a very hard working man that had never ending energy and pure Organic passion for his craft of bringing quality chocolate to the people around the world. He had such a light in his eyes when he spoke about his company, his friends and farmers. Click here to see Mott’s last blog post talking about shipping 18,000 bars to Holland, delivered by bicyclist, that would have included Mott, to stores all over Holland. I will cherish his stories and will honor and remember him with every melting square of Grenada Chocolate that touches my palate.

Rest in peace Mott …



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Gluten Free Spicy Breakfast Tacos

May 26th, 2013 at 11:00 pm by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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This is a childhood favorite! Gluten Free Spicy Breakfast Tacos.
Hearty, spicy chorizo, potatoes, eggs and my homemade Gluten Free Tortillas!
I about cried with joy when I took my first bite in the picture. This is
so easy to make and well worth the effort! The aroma wafting through the kitchen will make everyone super hungry and wake anyone trying to sleep!
Follow my recipe for the
this recipe makes 8 tortillas
Ingredients for the Breakfast Taco filling
2 links of Uli’s Spanish Chorizo – soft
4 Yukon Gold potatoes
5 eggs
sea salt
Aji Amarillo dried spice
Smoked Paprika
Cook the chorizo and potatoes with the garlic, sea salt and spices.   Add the eggs and mix it all together as the eggs cook.  Serve with fresh homemade Gluten Free and buttery spread.  Add a little hot sauce if you like an extra kick!
Gluten Free Foodies you will love Gluten Free Spicy Breakfast Tacos!

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Gluten Free Poblano Passion Soup

May 24th, 2013 at 11:00 pm by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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I am in love … hot and spicy love … the kind that you crave and just can’t seem to get enough of … I will let you in on my secret
Gluten Free Poblano Passion Soup!

The other night I just had this deep craving for something different and hot. Something that just wasn’t the ordinary daily flavors. The rainy season has kicked in around the Pacific NW and there is nothing better than a great big bowl of steaming hot soup. I wanted something easy so this is what I came up with.

Gluten Free Poblano Passion Soup
Pacific Gluten Free Broth 1 box
1 large yellow onion
3-4 large cloves of garlic
1-2 lbs. Chicken legs, wings or thighs with or without bones. I chose legs without the bones for ease.
olive oil
sea salt & fresh ground black pepper
chili pepper
1-2 limes
1-2 ripe avocados
1 large Poblano pepper
Jalapeno slices or green chillies
fresh cilantro
Corn tortillas for dipping

I roasted the Poblano pepper over the grill for about 15 minutes and kept turning it to roast all sides. You can also broil them by putting the pepper on a baking pan in the oven, top rack close to the coil and turn every few minutes. When all sides are done, put the Poblano pepper in a brown paper bag and roll up the bag tightly to create steam from the pepper. This will make it sweat and allow for easier removal of the skin. Leave it for about 10-15 minutes.

In a large pot, cover the bottom with olive oil and heat on medium. Dice up the onion and garlic and add to the pot with the oil. Sprinkle some sea salt, cover for a few minutes and let it simmer. Once the onions are translucent, add the chicken. Cover for a few minutes and then turn to cook through. Add the broth, sea salt, pepper, paprika and chili pepper and let simmer on medium covered for another few minutes while you cut up the Poblano.

Open the bag and take out the Poblano. Cut the stem off and slice down the middle. Brush off the outer skin with your hands. Remove the seeds and veins from the inside of the pepper. Cut into slices and the dice. Add to the pot with the chicken. Add the Jalapenos and or green chilies to taste or heat preference. Chop up the cilantro, add it to the pot and cover once again for about 15 minutes. Add the juice of one lime to the pot. Serve in bowls with more freshly chopped cilantro and Avocado slices. Warm up the Corn tortillas and eat. Total cooking time is about 30-45 minutes.

After just one spoonful of this soup I fell in love with the flavor of the Poblano pepper. It is slightly spicy but mellowed or well rounded. It is not the kind of pepper that kicks you! Tip – if you have soup left over for the next day … it is even better! So if you are making it for a gathering, make extra for yourself and make it a day ahead!


Created originally by Lisa Garza 10.30.2009

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Gluten Free Grilled Chop Chop Salad

May 23rd, 2013 at 11:00 pm by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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Let the grilling season begin!

Grilled ChopChop Salad w Hamburger
I had to share this again with you because it is the best salad I have ever made, Gluten Free Grilled Chop Chop Salad. I love to grill everything and this salad is the perfect blend of cold, crisp to smoky sweet and hot! Grilling the vegetables allows for the sweetness to come out while absorbing the smokiness from the grill. Notice how the vegetables change in texture and color. The aroma of the vegetables grilling and smoking is so intoxicating; you will quickly build an appetite.  Blackhorse BBQ sauce is GF, heart healthy and low in sugar and tastes really great on the burgers.  I like the Lighthouse Ranch dressing on top of the meat too, just a little if I don’t have time tp make my own.

Gluten Free Grilled Chop Chop Salad 
Serves 8 – 10 people

Ingredients to be grilled

1 Poblano pepper
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
1 orange pepper
3 young sweet Walla-Walla onions, with stalks
1 large head of broccoli
2 corn on the cob
1 lb hamburger
4 chicken breasts (some people don’t like the skin)
2 – 4 large breasts with the bone and skin (more flavor and tender)

Grapeseed oil – great for grilling and has a high burning point

Salad Ingredients

1 medium bunch of radishes
1 medium red/purple onion
1 head of Iceberg lettuce
1 head of Romaine lettuce
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar
1 lime, freshly juiced and zested
Smoked Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Wash all of the vegetables, leave them whole and do not cut them before grilling.

Completely remove the silk and husks from the corn.

Heat the outdoor grill to medium-high.

Brush all sides of all the vegetables to be grilled – peppers, corn and broccoli, with grapeseed oil. Place the oil coated vegetables on the barbeque grill when it reaches a temp of 250-300 degrees. Let the vegetables cook, with the grill closed, on each side for 5-10 minutes or until you begin to see the black marks appear. Use long tongs to turn the vegetables over. When all sides have black marks the vegetables are done. Place on a cooling rack to cool, 10-15 minutes.

Use grapeseed oil on the chicken, both sides. Season the hamburger and chicken with your favorite seasonings. I like dried Zócalo Gourmet Aji Limo and Aji Amarillo because the flavors are smoky and peppery but not too hot. Grill on both sides. The burgers are ready when the internal temperatures reach 160 degrees. The chicken is ready when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Please take the meat off of the grill and use a thermometer to check the temperature.

Chop the lettuce, red onion, and radishes into small pieces, all approximately ½ inch and put it all into an extra large bowl. When the peppers, broccoli and corn have cooled to the touch, cut and remove all of the stems and seeds from the peppers. Cut into ½ inch pieces and put it into the bowl. Use a knife or tool to remove the kernels of corn and add to the bowl. Chop the broccoli into extra small bits and add to the bowl. Mix well with your hands or salad tongs. Sprinkle approximately 2 tsp. of smoked sea salt, grind some fresh ground pepper and add approximately 3-4 Tbs. of extra virgin olive oil, 1 Tbs. of balsamic vinegar, lime juice and zest. Mix well. Serve on plate, top with meat and enjoy with friends.

I made a little extra and had some leftover the next day.  I made sure to put it in a tight sealing container and in the fridge as soon as I plated all the dishes for my guests.  I was so happy to have it the next day for lunch! It was just as perfect as the night before and maybe even more flavor because it had a chance to meld.  I love love love this Grilled Chop Chop Salad with or without meat! Oh! Maybe Grilled Salmon … next time!
Have a safe and Happy Grilling Season! Be sure to let me know what you think about my favorite - Gluten Free Grilled Chop Chop Salad.  I am sure you, your family and friends will love it! 



This was originally posted on 5.28.11 and a few faithful readers asked that I repost it! Thanks! 

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Creamy Broccoli Gluten Free Beer Cheese Soup

May 21st, 2013 at 7:00 pm by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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Creamy Celery Broccoli GF Beer Soup in a bowl!

How does a hot … steamy … creamy … cheesy soup sound right about now?
Cool rainy weather, snow or just a festive weekend puts me in the mood for my favorite Creamy Celery Broccoli Gluten Free Beer Cheese Soup! 

I would like to give a big shout out to my Gluten Free Foodies in Minnesota for my inspiration.  I lived through three of the harshest, snowiest winters in St. Paul, Minnesota many moons ago.  Believe it or not, there were many things I loved about Minneapolis-St. Paul – food was one of them! One of the things that I fell head over heels for was beer cheese soup.  

I just had to create this Gluten Free version of beer cheese soup after being so chilled and hungry for some real feel good comfort food today.  I had such a craving for some steamy goodness. This soup is even better than I remember!

Creamy Celery Broccoli Gluten Free Beer Soup

1 – 12 oz Organic Cream of Celery Condensed Soup – Pacific Natural Foods - NEW
1 medium head of broccoli
1 medium yellow onion
2 Tbs olive oil
sea salt
black pepper
2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 bottle Red Bridge Gluten Free Beer – optional
1 1/2 cups Tillamook Vintage White Medium Cheddar Cheese, shredded

Heat the soup in the slow cooker on medium. Cover and let it slowly heat while you prepare the rest of the soup.

Chop the broccoli into small pieces using a little bit of the stem. Chop the onion into small pieces.
Add olive oil to a pan and heat on medium.  Add the broccoli and onion to the pan and gently toss to coat all of the pieces with the oil.  Let simmer for 2-3 minutes.  Add 2 generous pinches of sea salt and coarse black pepper.  Chop and add the garlic, mix well.  Turn off the heat and add the broccoli, onion and garlic to the soup in the slow cooker.  Add the gluten free beer … 3/4 of the bottle and save the rest for the cook! (Just to make sure that everything else goes well) Mix well, cover and heat on high for 30 minutes.

Shred the Tillamook Vintage Medium White Cheddar Cheese  to equal approximately 1 1/2 cups.  After the soup has heated for 30 minutes, add 1 cup of the shredded white cheddar cheese to the soup.  Mix well, cover and let heat or melt for at least 10 minutes. I love love love this velvety smooth bold cheese! It goes really well with apples, pears and nut crackers!

Serve hot in your favorite bowls with a little extra Vintage White Cheddar Cheese and some fresh black pepper!  Total time to make this is approximately 1 hour.  Serves 4 – 1 cup servings as an appetizer or 2 good size bowls for a meal with some crusty Gluten Free rolls!
More about the Gluten Free rolls soon …

Thank you to Pacific Natural Foods for sending me some samples of their new Organic condensed soups.  You could use the condensed creamy chicken or mushroom soup in place of the celery.  All of them would add great flavor to this soup. I can’t wait to make more with Pacific Natural Foods.

I purchased the other ingredients at my favorite neighborhood grocery store – Town and Country Market on Bainbridge Island! When you go in to T and C say “Hi” to Jeremy, the manager in the beer and wine department and thank him for getting more GF beer selections!  


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Hello Dollies Gluten Free Cookie Bars

May 20th, 2013 at 11:00 pm by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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Well Hellooooo Dolly! 
It’s so nice to see and enjoy you again! 
My, you look new and improved - 
Hello Dollies Gluten Free Treats
I have no idea as to why these are called “Hello Dollies” but growing up in Texas, it was something I just made all the time.  My family strongly requested that I make them regularly.  My brother’s friends would walk into the house and straight into the kitchen looking for the Hello Dollies.  One particular friend, that I call “Brother Ted” used to grab the
milk carton and the tin of Hello Dollies and polish them off in a flash!
When my brother and sister went to college I used to send them care packages of “Hello Dollies” in a tightly sealed tin.  When they would get them, they would immediately ask for more because they mysteriously disappeared!  It seems as though “new friends” and roommates were discovering …
“Hello Dollies” - Texas-sized sweet, chocolate, coconut, 
buttery graham cracker crust treats made with pecans, almonds and walnuts - 
the ultimate sticky deliciousness!
Let me just say that this recipe is in my DNA.
I just know how to make it and just know that it is the cure-all for everything and anything.
Well, a Gluten Free friend of mine needed some cheering up,
so of course I immediately thought of
Hello Dollies Gluten Free Treats to the rescue!
I went into auto pilot and preheated the oven to
350 degrees
Just so you know, I always have these ingredients on hand for emergencies like this!
1 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cup coconut flakes
1 1/2 cup – chopped nuts of choice – I use almonds and walnuts because my friend can’t have pecans
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 stick plus 2 Tbs. melted butter 
1 1/2 cup Gluten Free Graham Cracker Crumbs – I made and froze my own but you can buy Kinnikinnick Graham Cracker Crumbs or S’morable Crackers and grind them.
9 inch square baking pan
and a little butter to coat the sides and bottom of the pan
I highly recommend if you have a 
“pre-slice starter” 
to use it because this can get sticky to pull out the first slice.
Spread the GF graham crumbs on the bottom of the pan.
Mix in melted butter and evenly flatten out on the bottom of the pan.
Bake for 12-15 minutes.
Let cool for 5 minutes.
Add the coconut …
nuts, chocolate and gently mix together.
Add the sweetened condensed milk on top and spread out evenly.
Bake for 25 – 30 minutes until it gets a light golden brown.
 Cut along the edges and cool on a baking rack for at least 30 minutes. 
Store in a tight container, if you have leftovers ….
GF Hello Dollies Treat Chocolate coconut gooey yum
Serving suggestions - 
Pre-chilled glass with iced cold milk or coconut milk
Hot strong coffee

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May 19th, 2013 at 10:00 pm by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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What Does Gluten Free Mean? is the latest company to get into the Gluten Free game by adding a new commercial this Spring.  Two Cowboys in a classic showdown and the big question … What Does Gluten Free Mean?

People who have Celiac Disease and Gluten Intolerance have a reaction to the protein found in wheat, barley and rye.  The only thing that can be done is to avoid this reaction and adhere to a strict Gluten Free diet. Although oats are naturally Gluten Free, most are grown or processed with wheat.  Please read the label to make sure that your product says Certified Gluten Free oats, or that this is a Certified Gluten Free product. 

certified GF symbol

Products that have the Certified Gluten Free symbol have the highest standard of safety. Some products may claim to be Gluten Free but are processed in a factory containing wheat. For people with Celiac Disease, Gluten Intolerance, Wheat Allergies, please be aware and be cautious of consuming those products.

I love seeing fun, positive commercials highlighting living Gluten Free.  It helps to get people talking and create more awareness. Happy Celiac Awareness Month!





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Gluten Free Baked Potatoes Stuffed with Spicy Chorizo and Peppers

May 18th, 2013 at 11:00 pm by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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GF Din Baked Potato ChorizoThe Spring rain is falling and we want warm and spicy comfort food! This is an easy recipe to make for a family or group of hungry friends any day of the week.  Gluten Free Baked Potatoes Stuffed with Chorizo can be served alone as a hearty meal with a side salad. If you have a really hungry group serve with your favorite fire grilled steak!

Gluten Free Baked Potatoes Stuffed with Chorizo

3-4 medium size Idaho Russet Potatoes

2 1/4 cups Tillamook 4 Cheese Mexican shredded

2 yellow peppers

2 orange peppers

2 red peppers

2 yellow onions

2 Tbs roasted garlic chopped

3 Tbs butter

3 Tbs olive oil

sea salt

black pepper

Aji Amarillo pepper dried

1 package Uli’s Famous Sausage – Spanish Chorizo or Chorizo Picante

Wash and pierce the potatoes and bake them in the oven at 425 degrees for 45 minutes to one hour.  When the potatoes are done, place the potatoes on a rack to cool for 5 minutes.  While wearing hot pads or gloves, carefully slice the potatoes in half lengthwise and place them in a baking pan.

peppers onions saute

While the potatoes are baking, sauté the onions and peppers with some olive oil in a pan over medium heat.  Set aside when done.  Cook the chorizo in the pan

Use a spoon to scoop out the potato and place it into a medium size bowl. Add butter, sea salt, black pepper, Aji Amarillo pepper, garlic, 1/4 cup of cheese and mix together.

To make this recipe use non-dairy Earth Balance butter and Daiya Non Dairy Pepperjack and Cheddar Cheese.

Scoop out the seasoned potato mixture and place it back into the skins.  Add the cooked Spanish Chorizo on top and add the peppers and onions just before serving.  I like to make extra and freeze them in self sealing freezer bags.  They heat back up perfectly in the microwave or oven fast and delicious! Make some Gluten Free Baked Potatoes Stuffed with Chorizo, you will be glad you did! 

I like to use Tillamook products because they are a local company from Tillamook, Oregon.  Over 100 years they have been making the freshest, best tasting natural cheeses in the USA. Tillamook has great company values, working with farmers and cleaning up the communities they work within.  For more information about Tillamook products that are Gluten Free, please go to their website.

I copied the information posted on the Tillamook site, asking about specific Gluten Free products.

Do any of your dairy products contain gluten?

Just a few of our products contain gluten. All of our cheese, yogurt, sour cream and butter products are gluten-free (hooray!).

Most Tillamook Ice Cream is gluten-free, too. HOWEVER, flavors that include ingredients like pie, dough, or cake are NOT GLUTEN FREE. Specifically, THESE TILLAMOOK FLAVORS CONTAIN GLUTEN – Caramel Toffee Crunch, Cookies and Cream, Cookie Dough, German Chocolate Cake, Sweet Centennial, Marionberry Pie, Sticky Bun, and Grandma’s Cake Batter. 


I hope you enjoy this easy Gluten Free comfort food recipe for Celiac Awareness Month!

Please share this recipe to show how easy it is to make a delicious food that just happens to be Gluten Free.



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Purple Sunrise Gluten Free Organic Hot Cereal

May 18th, 2013 at 9:39 am by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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Purple Sunrise Cereal bowl


Do you miss a warm bowl of oatmeal?  I hear ya’! I am allergic to oats and miss them terribly. No worries my Gluten Free Foodies friends, Purple Sunrise is a healthy and flavorful way to start your day!

Camano Island Mills makes the dried cereal that you make at home.  It is fast and easy to make a bowl of just add water to make it on your stove top or microwave.  Warm Purple Sunrise Gluten Free Organic cereal made with almonds, forbidden rice, buckwheat, canahua (baby cousin to quinoa), millet, brown rice, amaranth, chia seeds and flax seeds.  All Gluten Free, No GMO’s , Kosher and so easy to make in just a few minutes. This warm bowl of Purple Sunrise is very satisfying and packed with energy making whole grains to get your day started the healthy way.

I made mine on the stove with water. The directions say you can also make it with your favorite non-dairy or dairy milk. All it takes is a few minutes of stirring, letting it rest and it is done!  I added a drizzle of my favorite Ginger Syrup by Morris Kitchen with dried cranberries.   I made another bowl with a drizzle of Preserved Lemon Syrup and dried blueberries.  It would also be lovely with fresh fruit but I wanted to make this and share this as soon as I could.  I keep dried fruit in my pantry for this very reason when I am out of fresh fruit!

CIM Purple Sunrise bag

The texture of the cereal is so great, you can really taste the almond flavor.  I like it without the syrup but just a little really enhances the whole grains. I also tried it with a little Coconut Cream and that just made it even more decadent!  Whichever way you try it, I like them all! Keep it natural, try maple syrup or a little of your favorite preserves.  My guests really like it too!

Barbara Swartz created her company Camano Island Mills and Purple Sunrise cereal for her daughter that had reactions to wheat.  Her family has benefited from eating and enjoying the cereal as well. Read more about Barbara, her family and company on their website. Camano Island Mills is completely wheat free, oat free and vegan. You can order Purple Sunrise directly from their website. You can also purchase it at a few locations in Washington state.  They are adding stores a quickly as they can.  Barbara says she her core values are to care for her family, community and environment.  She has created partnerships with suppliers and is excited about sharing healthy education practices.

I highly recommend buying a few bags from them online.  I found that one bag serves 3 bowls. Bring the empty bag into your favorite grocery store. Ask the manager to start selling Purple Sunrise at their store so you can buy it from them.  This way you to can share your favorite breakfast – Warm Purple Sunrise Gluten Free Organic Cereal with you community.

Happy Celiac Awareness Month!




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Secret Spring Farm Field Trip

May 17th, 2013 at 12:31 pm by Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie
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Today is Food Revolution Day, a day that is committed to learning about where our food is sourced. I thought it was a perfect day to share a recent visit to my new favorite farm on Bainbridge Island, Secret Spring Farm.  It was a great day to get together for a Secret Spring Farm Field Trip for all ages. This small farming family has been back on their homestead for almost 2 years working hard revamping this land that their Great Grandfather, Frank Williams,  purchased in 1912. Erik and Felix are cousins and this is where their family history started on Bainbridge Island.  Erik is married to Maia and they met at Felix’s wedding to Sola, Maia’s sister. So Erik, Maia, Felix, Sola and their baby Aine all live on the farm. Did you get that?!?!

maia and erik

I met Erik and Maia a few months ago at a community meeting.  When I told them about my blog, I asked if it would be ok to visit them with some friends at their farm.  So last week, we decided that we needed a field trip to see what this small farm life is all about.  I asked a friend of mine, Shealeen Stabelfeldt (owner of Building Blocks NW) and her 2 adorable children – Maia and Luke to join us for the field trip.  Shealeen home schools her children, so this was a perfect lesson on the farm.   I invited my mother, Ginger as well. So we put our boots on, grabbed our cameras and went out for our little farm adventure a few miles down the road.

chickens wood pile climb

We were greeted by the roosters crowing as they played king of the hill.

Secret Spring Farm has approximately 50 hens and 30 baby chickens. Their flock is a variety of Golden Stars, Black Stars, Rhode Island Red, Astralorpe, Ameraucana.  They also have horses and mules to help plow the land.  Maia says, “the animals are more environmentally friendly than tractors. She said, “I know how to handle a horse or mule.  I don’t know how to run or fix a tractor.” The farm cats don’t get to nap all day.  They work on the farm as the special task force on rodent “re-direction” work.

Secret Spring Farm Orchard

Secret Spring Farm is 6 acres of cleared land where their Great Grandfather planted a dozen apple trees in 1920.  They have terraced garden beds where they grow a variety of kale, potatoes, lettuce, fenugreek, asparagus and more.  They kept some of the raspberry bushes and grapevines growing nearby.  Additionally they have young and old Apple, Cherry and Pear trees. Their hope is that their pear trees will grow tall in 3-5 years so they can make some cider. They are also hoping that the BARN Commercial Kitchen will be built and ready to share the space and equipment with other farmers and artisans to make their cider.

SSF t garden beehives

The beehive was buzzing in the distance, perfect for natural pollination of the farm and making honey.

Erik talking about pear plantings

Erik was telling us that their great grandparents lived on the farm and orchard in 1920.  They live in the same house. Erik is now in the room that his Grandmother grew up in while she lived in the house.  He says that he is amazed to think about it when he has time to go in the room to rest. They recently updated the house to allow for current wiring and technology.  Felix works from home and is also the webmaster for their beautiful web site. When he is done with the computer work for the day he steps outside and helps out on the farm.

While we were talking it was quite fun to hear all of the animals in the area.  It was a melody of coyotes howling in the forest nearby, the roosters crowing every few minutes and the birds and eagles swooshing by from above.  I asked them about unwanted visitors and  if they have problems with the animals taking freebies.  They said that the coyotes will try to get a “free lunch” when they take a break to go inside.  The farmers have installed electric fencing to help deter prey but it is usually on at night time while they are not working.  The deer roam and take nibbles or samples and are a bit easier to scare away. The eagles are perched high in the trees surrounding, keeping an eye on the perfect moment to swoop in and grab a feast to bring back to their nest.  I asked them, “how do you stop that?” Maia said, “you run about, make tons of noise and move your arms about.  It’s a group effort but that is about the most you can do.  It is farm life!”


I guess I never really thought about having to protect and secure the goods in that way.  Today we talk so much about technology security that this just really brings it back to nature and protecting their life’s work and investment.

As we toured the farm the hens, chickens and roosters were all around us.  I couldn’t believe how beautiful they were, so many beautiful colors. The golden and black ones are Ameraucana.  The black and white striped ones are Barred. They also have some Astralorpe, which lay their eggs the fastest.


Maia with chickens hens roosters with Maia and Erik

Maia Stabelfeldt holding a chicken while farmers Erik and Maia teach us about their farm.

Maia rooster kids

I asked, how many eggs will the hens lay? On average the 3 hens will give you 2 eggs every a day.  Roosters just eat, eat, eat!

Maia, grew up with chickens in Rosemeade, CA until she was 8 years old.  Her family has had a flock of chickens all their life.  When they moved to Arcadia, CA ,they lived on a farm with roosters.  Maia’s sister, Sola also learned about chickens from a young age.  They brought the Ameraucana from their mom’s flock in California.  I was very curious, I had to ask how they all met. Secret Spring Farm is the perfect small family farm.  They all work very well together and each of them have their strengths and special knowledge that make it the perfect mix.

They feed the chickens Organic food.  Their plans are to grow Quinoa and other GF grains to feed the chickens to produce GF eggs.  You can tell by the color of the earlobes in general. A white lobed hen will lay white eggs, while a red lobed hen will lay brown eggs.  Ameraucana lay eggs with colors ranging from khaki green to sky blue. Maia was so great in teaching the children about the animals and how to communicate with them safely. The kids had a chance to hold the chickens, pet the horses and mules.

2 Maias and a mule

Luke holding chicken w Maia

Eventually the farmers would like to get the farm in better shape to have more people visit the farm. They want to connect with the community by having Secret Spring Farm Field Trip for all ages, so that people can see, learn and experience how their food is grown.

The farm was covered in blackberries when they moved in.  They said it took a ton of work to  clear it. Their great grandparents had a farm and orchard with big trees that are still there and are 50-80 years old. When they had kids, they stopped the farm and let it grow over.  The trees grew big and tall while they raised their family. They would clear cut the trees to sell for lumber. Now that the great grandchildren are back on the homestead, the family roots continue to grow with the farm and some of the original trees.

Secret Spring Farm horses

For now you can find Secret Spring Farm produce, eggs and honey (soon), at the Bainbridge Island Farmers Market and at the Farm Stand at Bay Hay and Feed.  For more information about Secret Spring Farm, please go to

Later that day I received a very nice treat! An email with the project that little Maia Stabelfeldt wrote about her day on the farm.  She also drew a picture. Lovely! 

Maia Stabelfeldt's story and drawing



The post Secret Spring Farm Field Trip appeared first on Gluten Free Foodies.

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About Lisa - Gluten Free Foodie

Learning to live Gluten Free is a challenge. Gathering with like minded people while exchanging ideas, life experiences and gluten free food is more interesting! So I created, Gluten Free Foodies, to support people with Celiac Disease, Gluten Intolerant and other Food Sensitive people by gathering at events and celebrating the foods that we can eat! Do you have a Gluten Free question you want the answer to? Feel free to send me an email at Original blog - After all, didn't Erma Bombeck once say ... "I am not a glutton, I am an explorer of food."

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