Blogger Spotlight: “Gluten-Flee”

by Katie Schlientz
meredith keltz

It’s no secret I’m a huge foodie, and I love to share my experiences via pictures and videos all over social media. Hashtagging along the way, these online platforms have made it easy to connect with fellow foodies. Although I first met Meredith Keltz in person (and the Golden Knives Challenge more than a year ago), her images pop into my newsfeed and always make me salivate—zucchini and corn fritters, tomato beet watermelon salad stacks, and (I can’t WAIT to try) Panko crusted zucchini flowers. Previously known as The Food Yenta, Keltz recently changed her focus to “Gluten-Flee” based on her new lifestyle.

{IntoxiKate} What inspired you to start blogging about food?
{Keltz} I’ve always loved food and cooking has been a passion, since…well, forever.

When the opportunity came for me to stay home after my first son was born, I became a bit obsessed with dinner and our local cuisine. In between feedings, naps and diaper changes, I would scour the web for recipes. He would sit in his bouncy seat and I would put on shows for him. He loved it. I explained everything I was doing in-between funny faces and singing nursery rhymes.

As time went on, he started eating real food and my daughter was born. I started writing recipes down. Before I knew it I had a huge collection. My husband and I one day were joking around and out of nowhere he said, “you should start a blog.” And that’s where it started.

You recently transitioned from Food Yenta, to a focus on a gluten-free lifestyle. How did that come about?
The food yenta was our original idea. It was a place for me to document my food adventures and I had a ton of fun doing it, however I have been sick on and off for years with a lot of GI issues and autoimmune problems. After seeing a ton of doctors and lots of testing, I was recently diagnosed with a gluten intolerance -possible celiac (since I refuse to eat gluten again, I will probably never test positive).

You test a lot of recipes with your children. What is one way moms can get their children more involved in the kitchen?
My children taste everything that comes out of our kitchen; they also participate in almost everything we cook. From what pairs well with this or that, to picking a lot of our ingredients in our garden and shopping at our local farmer’s markets.

They don’t like everything I cook but they will try it, my daughter in particular is a very picky eater, but my son will eat and try almost everything. Maybe it was all those cooking shows I performed for them when they were little? I include them in everything I do in the kitchen though. Sometimes they are not interested and ignore me, but for the most part, if I ask them to join me, they will. Which always leads to trying new foods, and getting them interested in ingredients.

What are you currently testing in your kitchen?
We just spent over 2 weeks testing out fried chicken recipes. Mainly the mixture of flours and what gave us the perfect crunch. It was a lot of fun, and my kids, well, they loved it, especially since I also tested out the recipe with chicken cutlets. This week I think we are concentrating on zucchini. We just got home and found we had an abundance in the garden!

What’s one food you could never give up?

Sweet, salty or sour?
Can I pick all three?

What’s your favorite kitchen gadget?
My scale. My grandmother recently gave me one of her old scales that I just adore. I am pretty sure at this point I am over using it.

What are some of your favorite restaurants in Westchester?
We eat very local. Chutney Masala, Mima, Mint… Can’t wait for the Roost to open!

Where do you grocery shop?
During the summer I mostly shop at farmers markets. Off-season you can find me strolling through Mrs. Greens, Whole Foods and DeCicco’s.

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