Monday, July 30, 2012

Double chocolate cookies, ice cream sandwiches, and S'mores pie

Hi everyone,  I didn't get to do any baking again this week because we are in the middle of moving.  I actually pulled a cookie sheet out tonight, baked chicken, and when the timer went off I realized I had packed the hot pads and towels already!  So we had some chicken for supper, and no dessert, but you don't have to.  Tonight I thought I would share a couple more finds with you.

First up are these amazing double chocolate cookies from the allergic kid.  Libby actually won the Divvies Cookie Contest with this recipe.  

Next, from speed bump kitchen, comes ice cream sandwiches.  The recipe calls for cake flour and the only two boxes we had here said may contain peanuts so I made my own.  To do that, place 2 Tbsp. of cornstarch into the bottom of a one cup measuring scoop.  Fill the rest with flour and sift it twice.  I also have to say, this is the simplest ice cream recipe I have ever seen.  Give it a try.

Finally comes S'mores Pie, because what could be better than chocolate and warm, gooey marshmallows?   We don't have ricemellow cream here, so my plan of action is to just dump a bunch of mini marshmallows on top for the last 5 minutes.  Hope it works.  Looks delicious right?

I'm going to be offline until we get our new cable/internet hooked up.  Hope it's not too long.  Have a great week.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

7 Different Doughnuts!

A local magazine did an article about this super cute doughnut store we have downtown and there were pictures. Tons of them, in all their glorious color and deliciousness.  I was thinking about sneaking out of the house to get some, but then changed my mind.  If the baker in the store can make delicious doughnuts, then so can I!  Mine are going to be so awesome that I won't even miss those silly $4 doughnuts downtown.  Who cares if it is the size of your plate?  Not me!  Anywho... I got to work on my computer to find some safe recipe's to test.  The first one was a bomb, like the worst thing I have ever eaten.  Straight to the trash they went.  Here is the list of all the other safe recipe's I found if you want to give any of them a try as well.

This one is from sexy vegan mama.  It has fake tofu bacon on it that I am skipping.  Ick!  I am thinking about making some chocolate glaze and safe vanilla pudding to fill them.

She also has a jelly stuffed sugar doughnut.  It sounds good to me, hope it tastes good as well.
I'm going to roll the dough a bit thinner than hers. 

You would not believe the beautiful danish pastries I found on maple spice.  The only changes that need to be done here are to omit any nuts, and make vanilla glaze instead of almond glaze.

vegan Danish pastries

On vegan heartland I came across a recipe for vegan krispy kreme's.

This one I am looking forward to!  Strawberry cake doughnuts!  You will have to do some substituting to this recipe.  Soy, Rice or whatev. for milk, dairy free margarine for butter, and egg replacer for one egg.  But if it tastes anything like it looks, this one is going to be worth it.

Found these at the food allergy chronicles and they are milk, egg, peanut, tree nut, and soy free.

dairy,egg,peanut/tree nut free maple, chocolate and strawberry glazed, cinnamon sugar and powdered sugar doughnuts

In the next few weeks, I'm going to be testing these out and deciding on a favorite.  What happens if they all bomb you ask.  Well then I guess we'll be eating these.

Pizza Dough-Nuts

I found this on pinterest last week and was so disappointed in myself.  Why didn't I think of this!?  I grew up on those pop n fresh biscuits.  We would smash them, make a circle cut out with the vanilla lid and fry them.  I knew that the biscuits aren't safe, and I knew that the pizza dough was.  Oh well, even if I didn't invent it, I'm glad it's out there.  Have a great week!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Granola 101

First off, I have to apologize for no pictures.  I was messing around with the settings on my camera and screwed it up.  Now it won't download onto my computer.  Looks like a visit to see my brother is in order.  So be it.

There are two topics I have been hearing a lot about lately.  One is molecular component testing.  Have you heard of it?  Apparently it's been around for a little while now, but I missed it completely.  From what I understand, when you have a typical allergy test done (we'll use peanut for this example) they use the entire peanut.  With the component tests, they actually break the peanut down into its most basic form and test from there.  Your child may not be allergic to every component of the peanut.  I hear that having this test done may help your doctor better understand the potential severity of an allergen and may also indicate the likelihood of your child outgrowing his or her allergy.  I can honestly say, I don't have a great understanding  of this process and am wondering if it is worth the steep price tag.  Here is a link to a peanut test if you are interested in learning about how it works.  I also spoke to Dr. Bodreau-Romano (you may know her as The Allergist Mom) yesterday to ask her opinion on these tests.  She said there are both pro's and con's to this, as with everything, and it is not 100% accurate.  She will be putting an article together about it and I will be looking forward to reading it.

The other conversation I've been having a lot lately is about granola.  Over the last couple months I've been asked for my nut free granola recipe many times.  Homemade granola is so simple.  If you have thirty minutes, it will save you a ton of money to make your own.  The best thing about homemade granola is you can make it to your own taste.  Choose one item from each line ( or combine a couple if you want) and enjoy your own version of granola

Basic Granola
6 cups quick oats
1/2 c. brown sugar or  maple sugar
1/2 c. honey or maple syrup or molasses or brown rice syrup
1/3 c. oil - canola, coconut, whatever
3/4 c. wheat germ if you want.  If not, leave it out
1 c. raisins, or coconut, or dried apples - You can use enjoy life not nuts, but it'll be a bit messy
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, or vanilla

Now, preheat your oven to 350*F and then spread the oats out evenly on the pan and bake for 10 minutes.  While they are baking, combine all your other ingredients into a bowl.  Pull the oats out of the oven and pour them into your bowl.  Mix it until everything is well combined and spread the mixture back out onto the cookie sheets.  Bake for 10 more minutes, stirring halfway through.

Simple right?  I double this recipe and it makes two gallon baggies full.  In our house, we go through about a gallon a week, so for thirty minutes of work I get enough granola for two weeks and don't have to pay the $4 a box for the nut free version at the store.

If you are looking for somewhere to start, I'll share my 2 favorite way to make this granola

Cinnamon Raisin                                                          Coconut
6 c. oat                                                                        6 c. oats
1/2 c. dark brown sugar                                                1/2 c. light brown sugar
1/4 c. maple syrup and 1/4 c. molasses                        1/2 c. honey
1/3 c. canola oil                                                            1/3 c. coconut oil
3/4 c. wheat germ                                                         1 c. shredded coconut
1 c. raisin                                                                       1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

So spend some time in the kitchen, try things out and experiment a bit.  You really can't go wrong.

Monday, July 16, 2012

The best chicken strips ever!

I didn't make any desserts this weekend because my gallbladder is going crazy.  It's pretty much been a diet of jello and toast around here.  I did however make some awesome chicken strips.  These things are perfect in every way. 

 picture from since my camera is refusing to function

Even if you don't try anything else on this blog, you must try these.  Next time I'm going to cut the chicken into chunks and make nuggets instead of strips to appease my daughter.  I found the recipe on Our life uncommon and tweaked it to make it work for us. Here's what you need

2 chicken breasts
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. pepper
1 Tbsp. season all
2 tsp. paprika
1 cup flour
1 qt. baggie
a bowl of soy milk 
4 Tbsp. margarine (I used blue bonnet light)

Preheat your oven to 400*F.  Clean your chicken and cut it into strips or chunks, depending on whether you want strips or nuggets.  Once cut, place the chicken in your bowl of soy milk.  I'm sure any milk substitute would work.  Next, take all the dry ingredients and place them in the baggie.  Seal it shut and give it a good shake to mix everything.  By now your oven is probably preheated, so cut up the margarine into little chunks and space them out in a 9x13 pan and place it in the oven.  Once the margarine is melted, pull the pan out.  Take your chicken strips, one at a time, shake off the extra milk and drop them into the bag and give it a shake.  Place the breaded strip (or nugget) into the pan and continue on until you're finished.  Shove the pan back in the oven and bake for 20 minutes.  Flip the strips over and bake another 20 minutes.  I'm sure the time will be less for nuggets.  Basically, flip them once they are getting crispy.  

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Hi everyone.  I have to tell you I've been very busy rearranging my boards on Pinterest.  You see, I pin any recipes I stumble upon on to my board and it was getting so long that I've decided to add more allergy friendly boards.  I now have separate sections for breakfast, meals, and sweets!  I also have tons of finds to pass along.

The first thing I found this week blew my mind!  Do you know that Enjoy Life has a free e-book.  Yes, you heard me FREE!  How did I miss out on this?  Well, if you are anything like me and had no idea, here's the link.

Enjoy Life Foods

There was a recipe for these little nutella rolls on pinterest, but another allergy mom came up with a fabulous substitution idea.  Here are her instructions.  Take a crescent roll and add a scoop of apple pie filling.  Seal the edges shut and then roll in cinnamon and sugar.  Bake according to directions.
Quick and easy, just what we need sometimes.

picture from things that sparkle

With the heat of summer in full swing, don't strawberries sound good?  Over at gratefulprayerthankfulheart I saw a strawberry pie recipe.  Now I would probably use a pillsbury refrigerated pie crust and either make coconut whipped cream or just leave it without.

To make coconut whipped cream, take a can of full fat (not light) coconut milk and leave it in the fridge for several hours, or overnight.  When you open it, scoop out all the thick stuff at the top and put it in a chilled bowl.  Whip it with an electric mixer until it gets fluffy.  Pretty simple, eh?

Here is a dinner I just couldn't pass up.  Seriously, who doesn't love mushrooms?  Savory sweet life shared a recipe for chicken marsala.  We are having it later this week.  The only changes needed are to use margarine or earth balance for butter and skip the optional cream. 

Looking for a meat free option?  The kitchen life of a navy wife posted a recipe for avocado cream cheese pockets.  This one does take a bit of substituting, but it can definitely be done.  What I plan to do is use pepperidge farm puff pastry sheets (always check labels) and subbing Tofutti sour supreme for the cream cheese.  Also, you can either skip the egg wash or just brush the top with a bit of your milk replacement.  

Hope you all have a great week.  I'm working on some Texas sheet cake for this weekend.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Sometime two wrongs do make a right

How many times have you heard your mother (or yourself) say, "Two wrongs don't make a right"  Well, this afternoon I decided to do a bit of experimenting in the kitchen.  I'm still trying to find the perfect brownie and I'm not going to give up.  Someone told me that banana makes a great egg replacement in brownies.  I had all the ingredients in the house and time to kill, so why not. Well... they weren't exactly gross, but they weren't really brownies either.  This dish had the consistency of lava cake no matter how long I baked it and in the end it tasted like mashed up bananas in chocolate sauce.  I guess my quest for perfect brownies shall continue.  

Here is the picture of those lovely brownies. 

At this point I'm thinking, no worries I'll just make that doughnut recipe I found on pinterest.  Everything looked great!  I followed the directions perfectly and all my pictures matched hers.  

Ok, this is going to be great!  Now I pull them out of the oven and dip them in the glaze, let them cool just enough to eat, and we all dig in. 


That's the reaction I get from my faithful taste testers.  It tasted like my normal bread recipe, only slightly sweeter, dipped in sugar.  They were tough, for doughnuts, and not fluffy at all.  As I'm standing there staring around my well floured kitchen, looking at the mess I have to clean up I'm trying to think of some way to salvage something...  anything for Pete's sake!  Well, I take one of those doughnut holes and dip it in the chocolate frosting from the brownies.  Turns out the frosting is actually pretty tasty!  So I failed at brownies, and I failed at donuts, but at least I have a new frosting recipe!  See mom, two wrongs do make a right!

P.S. Look for the frosting on an upcoming Texas Sheet Cake.

Monday, July 2, 2012

4th of July Finds

Hey all, I know it's getting close, but better late than never right.  The Fourth is just a couple days and I thought I would pass along some "safe" treats that I have found.  Over at a pumpkin and a princess they made star shaped mini pies.  I love the idea, but instead of using that crust, I'll just buy the Pillsbury pie crusts that are in the refrigerated section.   

cute right!

I also found a bomb pop recipe that I can really agree with.  All there is to this recipe is fresh fruit and coconut milk.  I haven't decided if I will use coconut milk or vanilla soy yogurt for the white layer yet.  Check out the recipe.  You can find the recipe at family fresh cooking

July 4th Rocket Pops on Family Fresh Cooking blog IMG-6105

In the idea room I found a recipe for patriotic candied popcorn.  The best part is you already have the ingredients in the pantry.

red white blue popcorn 4

Finally, at 5 minutes for mom I found these super cute rice crispy wands.  The only substitution is margarine for butter.  I'm definitely taking these to our 4th party, and I think it's going to be a hit with the kids.  I mean whats better than a portable treat

Rice Krispies Treat Sparklers

On last thing.  Did you know that if you dip a marshmallow in water, you can then roll it in sprinkles and they will stick?  I saw someone do that tonight and wondered why I never thought of it.  Oh well, at least I know now.  Hope you all have a great holiday.