Thursday, August 28, 2014

Allergy-Friendly Southwest Pasta and Quinoa Salad

I can't believe summer is almost over! It's still really hot here and I love cold pasta salads when it's hot out.

This this healthy and delicious pasta salad makes a great side or main dish. And it's something you can prepare ahead to put in your child's lunch box for a healthy lunch.


This recipe is free of the top 8 allergens (egg-free, dairy-free, wheat-free, peanut-free, tree nut-free, soy-free, fish-free and shellfish-free) and vegan.

Southwest pasta salad

1 box rice, or other allergy-friendly fusilli or penne pasta 
1/2 cup quinoa
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup frozen corn, thawed
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
3 - 4 green onions, white and light green parts chopped

Honey Lime Dressing

1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon chile powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

* You may want to double this if you like more dressing on your salad, or if you will have leftovers. I find that rice pasta tends to dry out a bit more, so you can add more dressing when you serve it later.

Prepare the pasta and quinoa according to the package directions. Toss them together in a little olive oil in a large bowl to keep the pasta from sticking.
Stir in the beans, corn, pepper and onions.
In a small mixing bowl whisk together the dressing ingredients.
Pour over the salad and toss to combine well.
You can eat it warm, or let it chill in the refrigerator for an hour. 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Cody's First Day of School!

Yesterday was Cody's first day of school ever. He loved it and I'm so happy for him! We spent a lot of time preparing him and ourselves for this and I was completely exhausted last night. We are extremely lucky to have found a school that is very food allergy knowledgeable and friendly and they don't do lunch which is good for us at this point. At least we don't have to worry about that until he's a little older and more able to manage his food allergies.

I thought I would be terrified when this day came and I'm just so grateful that I could relax and enjoy this big, exciting new chapter in Cody's life. It was a happy day for all of us.

Yesterday morning I made Cody his favorite strawberry and lemon pancakes.


This recipe is free of the top 8 allergens (egg-free, dairy-free, wheat-free, peanut-free, tree nut-free, soy-free, fish-free and shellfish-free) and vegan.

Lemon and strawberry pancakes 

Makes about 8 pancakes

5-6 large strawberries
1 1/2 cup oat flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup oat milk
1/2 cup applesauce
1/4 vegetable oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
Zest from 1 small lemon
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla

Purée the strawberries in a blender or food processor.
In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, bakng powder and salt.
In another bowl combine the strawberry purée and the remaining ingredients.
Combine the wet and dry ingredients.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or skillet over medium heat.
Use a ladle or measuring cup to pour about 1/4 cup batter on the skillet or griddle.
Cook until bubbles appear and the bottom is golden brown, about 2 minutes.
Flip using a spatula and cook until the other side is golden brown, about 2 minutes.
Place on a plate and keep warm in a 200 degree oven.
Repeat until the batter is gone.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Allergy-Friendly Gazpacho

My plan was to post a dairy-free, allergy-friendly recipe for my Grandma's apricot ice cream. As sometimes happens with experimental cooking, it didn't work at all! But I learned something new. Apparently maple syrup doesn't freeze well. Oops! I'll try again next week.

So today I'm sharing one of my favorite summer recipes from my mom. She doesn't like when I share her recipes, but this is so good and refreshing I had to do it. Hopefully she'll forgive me for sharing it here. I didn't even have to change it to make it allergy-friendly. Thanks Mom!


This recipe is free of the top 8 allergens (egg-free, dairy-free, wheat-free, peanut-free, tree nut-free, soy-free, fish-free and shellfish-free) and vegan.


2 lbs. fresh tomatoes 
1 cucumber, peeled
1 small red onion, chopped and rinsed (to mellow the flavor)
1 green or red bell pepper, remove stem and seeds
1 garlic clove
1/4 cup chopped green chile, or 1 jalapeño, remove stem and seeds (optional)
2 cups tomato juice
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

I leave the tomato skin on, but if you want to remove the skin you can do that by blanching them in boiling water for 10 seconds. This will loosen the skin and make it easy to remove.
Chop the vegetables into large chunks and place them in a blender or food processor (you may have to divide into batches if they don't all fit).
Add the remaining ingredients.
Blend until smooth.
Pour into a large bowl and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Chill in the refrigerator for at least a hour before serving.
I like to garnish with fresh avocado.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Allergy-Friendly Lemon and Garlic Pasta Primavera

This dish is a great and tasty way to use summer vegetables. Feel free to add your favorites.

Have I mentioned how much I love lemons, especially in summer recipes? Last year we planted a lemon tree in our yard and it's just starting to grow fruit. I'm really excited to have my own, homegrown lemons. I'll put them in everything!

This recipe is free of the top 8 allergens (egg-free, dairy-free, wheat-free, peanut-free, tree nut-free, soy-free, fish-free and shellfish-free) and vegan.


Pasta Primavera

1 package rice pasta of your choice
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium zucchini, diced
1 medium yellow squash, diced
1cup broccoli (or asparagus, or green beans), cut into bite size pieces
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1 cup fresh spinach or kale, chopped
Juice from 1/2 a lemon
1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
12 grape or cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
3 scallions, thinly sliced. (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Cook the pasta according to package directions, drain and set aside.
In a large pan heat the olive oil over medium heat. 
Add garlic and sauté for about 30 seconds until fragrant.
Add squash, broccoli and kale and sauté until slightly softened, about 3 minutes.
Add broth and lemon juice. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 4-5 minutes until veggies are soft and sauce is reduced by about 1/2.
Add peas during the last 2 minutes of cooking.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Remove from heat.
Add the pasta, lemon zest, parsley and scallions to the sauce and toss.
Adjust seasoning and serve.
I added some crushed red pepper flakes to add a bit of a kick!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Happy Birthday to Josh!

Happy Birthday to my awesome husband and Cody's daddy, Josh! Cody and I made him this birthday cookie and I'm pretty proud of it even though my decorating skills are not that great. I am practicing for Cody's birthday in September. I plan to make him a Mickey Mouse chocolate chip birthday cookie. He likes the cookies more than cake, so I thought he'd enjoy that more. I made a mini-version for him today.

I used my allergy-friendly chocolate chip cookie recipe and my favorite icing recipe.
I added cocoa powder to make brown (you'll have to add a bit more water also until you get the right consistency for decorating) and Color Garden natural food dye for the red(ish) icing. It looks more pink in the photo.