All posts filed under: Special Diet

Tales of Woe – Those Sunbutter Cookies

FANTASTIC!!!!!!! AMAZING!!!!!!! STUPENDOUS!!!!!!!! 3 INGREDIENT SUNBUTTER COOKIES!!!!!!!!!! … the internetowebbyverse screamed at me as I searched for a peanut-free cookie recipe. All of the recipes.. and I mean ALL… were simply an even swap (Sunbutter for peanut) in a standard peanut cookie formula. I threw caution to the wind, and blindly followed their advice.. wildly inappropriate punctuation. Here’s the hitch… Peanuts and sunflower seeds aren’t the same thing. Peanuts work so well for nut butters because they are homogenized easily. Oil seeds (like sunflower) resist blending… they naturally separate and continue to separate even after incorporation into a dough. Is that a big deal? Certainly.  Butters that want to be oil will be inherently greasy… meaning, the Sunbutter cookies are going to be overly oily on the exterior as the oil migrates to the surface, while the interior becomes dry as a powder keg. And all that oil is going to turn to laquer, creating an odd plastic texture to your finished cookie. There’s also something green going on. Sunflower seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds and the …

One from Column ‘A’ – Five Spice Caramel Pork

To be fair, I’ve never seen this on any Chinese take-out menu. I have only been able to get it in Bangkok…. or at my favorite Chinese fare haunt in the city. So, dont hate me there. In fact, if you are going to hate me at all – its because I’ve monkeyed around with the traditional recipe a goodly amount… I’m not using pork belly, Jane is deathly allergic to soy, neither of us like our head blown off with heat….. and (God forbid), I’m not using a wok, it’s a Dutch oven. Five spice pork is an old Cantonese recipe that has cousins and distant relatives across most of Asia. And, unlike most take-out oferings, is more of a stew rather than a quick wok fried dish (hence, the dutch oven.) It is smoky, spicy, slightly sweet and terribly flavor packed. Short of Char Sui, it is my absolute favorite way to enjoy pork. Alrighty then… on with the changes we’ve made. Chinese Five Spice Powder – If you wanted to go through …

Tahini Grilled Chicken

  Yes, yes… it does day “eating allergy free” up there in the picture. But, before you go all cat lady crazy on me – let me explain. First off, I’m not calling it “All Encompassing Allergy Free” because frankly if you go that far, you’re just living off air… that’s been scrubbed… and hasn’t been anywhere near people… or farms… We, unfortunately, have a very specific set of allergens that I have to navigate in order to provide food that is tasty, appealing, and somewhat resembles foods we used to enjoy. And instead of dredging all that back up here.. just go back to The Long, Slow Train to Crazytown and catch up. The thing is.. we like peanut satays. Scratch that – we love anything with peanuts. But like the train ride tells you, it’s just another of the things I’ve had to scour out of our diet. Among the substitutions I’ve been testing in our diet, I’ve found that Jane has absolutely no issue with sesame… in any form. Lately, she’s even …

Test Kitchen – Fake Soy Sauce – Round 2

The last time I did this, I was convinced I could make a fake soy sauce out of browned mushrooms. And to be painfully honest, it was just okay. It worked like I needed it to for the handful of recipes I utilized it in… but, it still didn’t taste quite enough like soy to make me happy…. in other words – it still tasted like mushrooms. So, I’ve decided to go back the beginning and see if I could bolster those existing fake soy recipes out there and give them what they are all lacking – body / richness / stainable color / umami (god, I hate that word.) First things First ONE – ALL non-soy recipes are essentially the same. Boullion, Vinegar, Spices, Water. – so I’m not listing the original recipe from any particular source… (google “fake soy” and the window fills up with recipes)… I picked one at random just to get the general proportions. TWO – I’ve used good to excellent quality ingredients. Meaning, it isn’t going to be cheap to buy …

Old Buttermilk Sky

Buttermilk Skies – In my mind’s eye, I can see my Dad looking up at those clabbered clouds. And, in that weird lilting falsetto singing voice he reserved for commercial jingles and pre-1960’s radio songs, belting out the first line of that old Hoagy Carmicheal classic. Never any more than that… just the first line. It’s kind of like the way he’d sing the old, old OLD jingle for Lay’s Potato Chips… “I crackle ’cause I’m crisp. I taste better because I’m fresh. I’m a treat. I’m full of zip – I’m a Lay’s Potato Chip” … every single time a fresh bag of chips got opened up for lunch. Or – his retelling of “The night Before Christmas” where he never got more than the  very beginning  out before Jane went into panic mode. “T’was the night before Christmas…” “Charles!“ “… and all through the…” “CHARLES!  I mean it!“ Apparently… Dad’s version was terribly vulgar. I’ll never know, I never heard it. * * * … but I can’t look up at the skies …

Peanut Butter Cookies

In a perfect world, we’d all be able to eat any type of food out there – enjoy it for what it is, and suffer no consequences. But this ain’t that kind of story. You know, it’s really a marvel that I can even function in the food world given the laundry list of problems that plague our family. My dad was allergic to mushrooms, avocados,  pitted fruit, tree nuts, peanuts… and well, corn just made him a crazy man… Really, one mis-step in a corn based product, and he symptomed as though he had early onset Alzheimer’s. You think gluten free is difficult? Try removing every trace of corn out of your diet. Jane has no tolerance for alcohol,  is freakishly lactose intolerant and she is allergic to chocolate… as in anaphylaxis… the “call 911.. and you better hurry kind.” And the one thing that would stem a normal reaction – those little epi- pens loaded with epidrine? Yeah.. they just run her faster down that light at the end of the tunnel. But, Jane craves chocolate.. …

Simple Dinner Sunday – Soup Throwback and a **Give-away**

Overheard at a small laboratory in Anaheim…  “Sherman, my boy…”   “Yes, creepy smarty dog with no pants?” “Hmm…” “Kick the Way Back Machine to 1967, I’m jonzin’ for some Cream of Mushroom Soup!”   “But Mr. Peabody… you’re lactose intolerant.”  “Right you are, Boy. We’ll just have to make it ourselves.  Go snag a couple of beakers from those idiot rats…” The truth is… I’ve been jonzin’ for some canned Cream of Mushroom soup. But, having a lactose intolerant family member in the house, I just don’t buy it. It’s too big of a temptation to toss it in something when you need that little extra mushroom-y creaminess. But – with the cooler weather starting, I was really starting to get that craving. Cream of Portabella Soup Makes 2 Bowls Ingredients 2 Medium Portabella Caps – Diced 3 Shallots – Minced 2 Cups Lactose Free Milk 1 Cup Chicken (or Vegetable) Stock 1 Tablespoon Cream Sherry 2 (to 3) Tablespoons Tapioca Starch 1 Teaspoon Sea Salt Black Pepper to taste 1 Teaspoon Parsley – Minced 2 Tablespoons Pecan (or Olive) Oil …