Me, A Mom

3 kids and a dog

Archive for the tag “food allergy”

Just say no to CANNED Gravy

Just say NO

Image result for just say no

to canned gravy

here’s how.

get some stock going (chicken or beef depending on what you roasted) I use kitchen basics unsalted

you want it super hot but not boiling

In a fresh pot:

Take several TBS of light flavored olive oil(does just as good as butter )

but if you have drippings(the oil and browned bits in the pan you roasted your turkey or beef in)

you can use those instead

into the pot it goes

brown up 2 TBS flour

add 1 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp lawry’s seasoned pepper

(love this I add it to many casseroles and soups)

1/4 tsp garlic powder

cook this till the flour mixture is browned…watch carefully it can start to burn quick if the heat is too high

once the oil mixture is browned slowly add in the stock a little at a time using a whisk

add the hot liquid slooooooowly

adding just enough till you get to the desired consistency

add salt to taste

then….taste and make sure it’s right

strain if needed though if you whisk carefully there should not be lumps

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prefer a darker color?  add a few tsp of instant espresso powder or

a chunk of safe beef or “non beef” bouillon

again I prefer unsalted products so I can add salt to our tastes not super salted like so many pre-made products

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now who doesn’t love a great homemade gravy

enjoy

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As I open up the betty crocker as an allergy mom…

Yes that is the one I have…but it no longer has its covers attached.

I remember when my second child then my first child were diagnosed with food allergies

My second child was 6 months old or so, and my first was around 4 years.

I wasn’t told “he can’t have dairy” or “NO NUTS” between the two they are allergic to eggs, peanuts, treenuts, and then to boot the second child is allergic to dairy as well.

To say I was overwhelmed would be an understatement

then, as someone who likes to cook I knew I had to figure it out.

and it took awhile

hits and misses

winners and garbage can left overs

it has become manageable

(thankfully they can still have wheat…that would be  a whole nuther ballgame)

1.  We learned that soy sour cream works really good as an egg substitiute(1/4 cup per egg called for in recipe)

2.  We learned that there is nothing that works well as an beaten egg white substitute(think meringue)

3.  We learned that ground flax seed also works ok for egg(better for quick breads and cakes) use 1 tbsp ground flax seed and 3 tablespoons water  stir, do for each egg called for.

4. We learned to read labelsevery product, everytime, you never know when a company may change their formula, or which line they make the food on(cross contamination)

5. We learned it is very difficult to eat out in our town…places often have signs saying they cannot guarantee any food is safe.

6.  We learned that some people get it…and some just don’t  it is only important that we know who we can trust.

7.  As soon as the kids learned to read(even the one without any allergies) that they help double check labels.

8.  We learned homemade picnic lunches are just as good as going out on trips..plus healthier

9.  We learned to check ahead before going to parties, or playtimes, and regardless of what they say, bring food from home just in case.

10. We learned life goes on. Everyone has something to deal with, many times those things are invisible and though not necessarily as potentially deadly as food allergies. Life goes on you live, you adapt, you learn what works and doesn’t work and then if you are cool…you share some of that with those that want/need to know.

Yesterday…I made a roast…and tapioca pudding and…oatmeal cookie bars….whew

I make beef roast a alot…like once a week

its one of the few meals that gets us more than one day.

We prefer the spoon roast, but I’ve also purchased chuck roast as well

Want to know more about cuts of beef?

Now when I was growing up making a roast meant filling the pan with cubed potatoes, carrots, celery , onions, and some salt and pepper. It was scrumtious.

Then the roast after cooking would be carved….some cut off and saved for soup, or pot pie, or stew,

and the rest served for supper.

But…my kids aren’t crazy about cooked veggies, and a roast doesn’t last as long as it used to. I have one meat crazy boy who just can’t stop.

So…whether it is beef tips or beef roast here is what I do.

First I often (though not always…depends on time constraints) seer it quickly in a hot pan with olive oil to give some color.

Then I put into a greased (spray oiled) pan and top with salt pepper, a few onions and then a cup or so of brandy.(brandy and beef can’t be beat!)

and then bake till it falls apart!either slowly at 275 or a little faster at 350 (or if you have a slow cooker you could do it that way.

Well….yesterday I cheated…I sprayed the pan with olive oil, put the roast in fat side up(nooo don’t take all the fat off…it adds so much flavor as it melts into the meat besides you don’t eat it every day right?)

anyway

I had some store bought onion soup mix(store brand even) and it was safe(well…no allergens for my kids) for my family.

I dumped it on the roast, added 1 cup of brandy and 1 cup of water to the pan, put the cover on the roaster and let it cook at 350 for about 3 hours.

and…it falls apart, and tastes yum….

so into the fridge and

then for supper I”ll make pasta or potatos, and a veggie(or fresh veggies) maybe a jello or fruit salad, and

none of it will last as many meals as it used to.

——————————-

now if I had used the slow cooker that would be it.

but since I had the oven at 350 for almost 4 hours I figured I better be a good steward of the energy(gas) we are using and make some other stuff too, {maybe a pingback to my post on redeeming the time would make sense here}

So into the oven went 3 sweet potatoes(washed and with a slice in the top of each to allow for steam to escape(placed on top of a parchment paper covered pan)

and since we were having left overs for supper last night(the roast was for the next day) I then found the left over rolls we had put them on a pan and brushed them with olive oil(that I had mixed with onion powder and garlic powder) go figure no one wants to eat the potato rolls before but put the oil on and they disappear before I get one!

and finally…despite getting our girl scout cookies the other day I decided(since I had some oats in the cupboard) to make oatmeal raisin cookie bars(one kid hates raisins…and said she won’t eat it…oh well…more for me 😉    )

(By the way I made the recipe on the oats container and I substituted soy sour cream for eggs, 1/4 cup per egg called for and I used fleischmanns  no salt margarine as it is dairy free and what I had on hand)

oh and while that was all cooking I made tapioca pudding…..

NO EGGS OR DAIRY

I add 1 tbsp corn starch to the mixture then add vanilla soy milk let sit 6 minutes then bring to boil, turn off and  add the vanilla(I also add a little fake almond extract) put into a container cover with plastic wrap

and done.

whewwwwwwwww…..done cooking….at least till next time.

Baking and Food allergies….and tasty???

You bet!

Ok the taste isn’t always exactly like baked goods with butter/eggs/nuts

 

but the substitutions available make life easy…and…tasty food

If you also need to be gluten free…you’re on your own for that one

 

I am sharing what I have to deal with:

Dairy Allergy

Egg Allergy

Peanut Allergy

Treenut Allergy

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The only thing I’ve yet to find a “real” (ie workable) substitute for is whipped egg whites (for meringue)

beyond that in recipes that call for a whole egg or even two whole eggs you can substitute

1/4 cup of soy product(pureed tofu, soy cream cheese, soy sour cream) for each egg called for in a recipe

or

1/4 cup pureed banana or apple sauce

(if you are substituting fruit for eggs do not substitute fruit for oil as well or your end product will be gummy)

 

for butter I substitute light olive oil or coconut oil(technically coconut is a fruit not a nut at least that’s what the docs at children’s hospital tell us.)

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the other option you have that works especially well for making cakes is to add 1 tsp of baking soda per cup of flour

and for each tsp of baking soda needed add 1 tbsp of lemon juice or white vinegar to the liquid ingredients

 

this can be substituted into any recipe!

by using the following technique

mix together dry ingredients in one bowl

mix together all wet ingredients in another bowl

preheat oven to recipes temperature

get the pans ready(spray with oil)

then mix the two sets of ingredients together and pour into pans and pop into preheated oven

for a great recipe thats been around years check out

wacky cake(also known as depression cake)

If you are not as daring as I am you may want to check out a book from the library on allergy eating or go to one of the many sites available

Baby Cakes

Baby cakes is a awesome store several years ago we visited relatives in NYC and ate there…it was the first time my then 9 and 12 year olds ever had doughnuts from a bakery…I cried(well…I teared up)

I have checked out their recipe book occasionally and most of the recipes are vegan (no dairy or eggs) as well as gluten and nut free! yay!

but if you, like me don’t need to be gluten free the recipes can be a bit cumbersome as many require multiple types of flour and other ingredients you probably don’t have on  hand

So I give then 8 doughnuts out of 10 for ease of use

Then there is Divvies

a bakery that is allergy free…..major YAY

and a cookbook that is easy to follow my kids absolutely love the “Pick your berry Muffins

The magazine “Living Without” also has some great ideas for food allergy eating

and beyond the three above there is always the Food allergy and anaphylaxis network(which I see has now merged and is called FARE) for ideas as well as other websites and books available to you.

always check labels

always be aware of possible cross contamination

Sign up for food allergy alerts(like when manufacturers label food wrong)

and finally

buy less processed, make more whole foods,

a favorite in my house is shredded bbq chicken

I purchase several packets of frozen or fresh boneless skinless chicken thighs

put it in a roasting pan or slow cooker

top with your favorite bbq sauce

and bake at 350 for several hours or until meat easily shreds

take care

stay safe

eat well!

Food allergies (no its not that they just don’t like the food!)

food allergies and food intolerance’s are two different beasts

and intolerance may make you miserable

while

food allergy can kill you

————————————————————

It started simply enough….

decide to have a baby

get lucky enough to get pregnant

then

you  notice blood in their diaper

then head to toe itchy rashes that local doctors are not able to control

the baby rubs his heals so much on the sheets the sheets have streaks of blood on them in the morning

their scalp is covered with dermatitis and that too is itched bloody while they sleep.

you try to nurse, adjust your diet stop eating dairy, eggs, and nuts, but the blood in the diapers continues

so its off to a childrens hospital where your child is finally diagnosed with allerigies

not one but 3 Dairy, Eggs, and nuts(all nuts, peanuts and tree nuts)

it is daunting learning to read labels

it is daunting changing how you cook

my middle child as an infant could only tolerate neocate

at close to 35 dollars a canister that would get us through just over two days it was all he ate.

we did try other foods, sweet potatoes worked, many others he had skin reactions to so we were only doing a tsp. or so of new food a week

and finally after appeals, and letters from doctors insurance covered some of what they were trying to not cover

they said it was a supplement(not when its all they eat we said!)

not long after my middle child was diagnosed his older brother had a reaction while eating a cookie and was subsequently diagnosed with food allergies as well, eggs and all nuts(and several years ago was diagnosed with esosinophilic esophagitus…but thats for another post)

the website that we have found the most helpful

is FAAN, the food allergy and anaphylaxis network

the best thing about it is you can get either download or order

sheets that clearly state the foods to look for when reading a label  for various food allergens

although reading labels has become easier over the years…they are now heading into middle and high school(and the worries change)

companies sometimes change formulas so its best to scan through the ingredient labels every time you purchase a product

and from the time your child can read teach them (not in a fearful way) but teach them to read labels have some foods that are not safe and teach them what to look for.

When you can, when necessary …educate others about the food allergies

food allergies and food intolerance’s are two different beasts

and intolerance may make you miserable

while

food allergy can kill you

more another day on the experiments I’ve done, the food substitutes we love and some that failed. as well as sources for recipes we like, and products we enjoy.

thankfully the kids can still have gluten/wheat cause thats a whole nother beast.

 

the thing is it becomes part of your life, much like how a diabetic watches their blood sugar

yes the first years were stressful but you buck up and deal

and you find ways to make your kids own their allergies and realize life goes on and not to dwell (more on how to keep sane later) 🙂

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