Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Allergy-Friendly Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Last weekend was really fun and full of firsts for us. Last week I posted about the cupcakes I was making to take to the birthday party we were going to. Cody had so much fun and didn't care at all that he couldn't have the cake and other food. He was just really happy to have his cupcake.

At the party I met another mom who's son had just been diagnosed with several food allergies. She was really emotional about it and just totally overwhelmed. I remember feeling exactly the way she did. I hope I helped answer some of the questions she had and told her that it really does get easier. I felt so bad for her. It's so scary, especially at the beginning.

The next day we went to a Halloween party at the aquarium. We have been talking to Cody about trick-or-treating and then trading in our candy for safe treats. He had so much fun collecting candy and was happy to trade in the candy he got for a toy eel from the aquarium store!

I know these things might get harder as he gets older and he will probably feel left out sometimes. We're really trying to create positive and fun experiences now rather than focus on the negative. Hopefully that sticks with him. 

Since Cody loves my chocolate chip cookies so much, I thought I'd try some with pumpkin for Halloween. He loves these too! They're completely different from the regular chocolate chip cookies I make. I wanted to cut the sugar and replace some of it with maple syrup. These are more cakey, but still really good.

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.

Enjoy!


Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes about two dozen cookies

1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 cup pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups oat flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the shortening and brown sugar.
Stir in the maple syrup, pumpkin and vanilla.
In another bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt.
Combine the wet and dry ingredients.
Drop teaspoonfuls of the dough onto a baking sheet.

Flatten with your fingers. These will not flatten on their own.
Bake about 15 - 20 min. minutes or until golden brown.

Want more of a pumpkin spice flavor? Add some pumpkin pie seasoning, or some cinnamon.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Allergy-Friendly Strawberry and Chocolate Cupcakes

I'm off to a late start with my Halloween treats, but I'm on a roll now!

This weekend Cody is going to his first non-family birthday party. I'm not really worried about it, but it will be the first time (of many) he will be in a situation where he can't have what other kids he knows are eating and will have to have his own food from home. I think we've talked enough to him and approached it in a positive way that it will be, as I tell him all the time, "no big deal."

I have to bring a treat for him since he will not be able to eat the cake being served. I decided to make strawberry and chocolate cupcakes. And because it's almost Halloween I had to make ghosts and jack-o-lanterns!

I used my favorite icing recipe, Enjoy Life chocolate chips and Color Garden natural food colors to decorate.

Enjoy!

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.

Strawberry Cupcakes

1 3/4 cups oat flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup pureed strawberries
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350 and grease cake pan or muffin pan.
Combine flour, sugar, baking soda and salt.
In another large bowl combine the strawberry puree, oil, vinegar and vanilla.
Gradually stir in the flour mixture. Be sure to mix well.
Spoon the batter into the cake or muffin pan. Bake for about 30 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

*Note that these will not come out pink because the oat flour browns. I don't want you to be surprised!

Chocolate Cupcakes

1 1/2 cups oat flour
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup oat or rice milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 and grease cake pan or muffin pan.
Combine flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.
In another large bowl combine the oat/rice milk, oil, vinegar and vanilla.
Gradually stir in the flour mixture. Be sure to mix well.
Spoon the batter into the cake or muffin pan. Bake for about 30 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.




Friday, October 17, 2014

Halloween and the Teal Pumpkin Project

I'm sorry I haven't been posting as often. Work seems to be getting in the way of writing new posts! Things will slow down after this month and I can get back to cooking new things and blogging. Halloween is my favorite holiday, so I will be posting a few things including some delicious pumpkin chocolate chip cookies I just made!

Halloween is coming up soon. It can be a difficult holiday for kids with food allergies, but there are lots of ways to make it fun.

This is the first Halloween that Cody really understands the concept of trick-or-treating. I want him to be able to participate and not be left out of this fun tradition. I personally love the idea of "trick-or-trade" where kids trade in the candy they get for safe treats, or for something special they want. That way it's still fun for them and they can safely participate.

There's a book called the No Biggie Bunch Trade-or Treat Halloween about this. I love the No Biggie Bunch books. They address food allergies in a positive way that's educational, but also easy for kids to understand and they can relate to the characters in the books.

Have you heard about the Teal Pumpkin Project? If not, click the link to read about it. The idea is to paint a teal pumpkin to put outside your house to let kids with food allergies know that you have non-food items. I love the idea! I'm really happy to see it getting a lot of attention and that people with and without food allergies are participating. Below is our teal pumpkin.

Hope you all have a happy, safe and fun Halloween!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Allergy-Friendly Zucchini Bread

I can't believe I haven't posted this yet. I thought I did, but looked back and it wasn't there.

This is one of the first things I made for Cody along with sweet potato bread when we found out about his food allergies. We were trying to figure out how to get calories in him and our whole new world of allergen-free cooking. It seems like so long ago.

I think if you are just starting out with food allergies it's helpful to hear that what seems impossible and overwhelming at first will get a lot easier. This is just the way we eat and cook now, I bake about one a week, Cody loves to help me and he enjoys the food we make. Josh has also learned how to make food for Cody. He made blueberry waffles for him the other morning. It really does just become second nature.

Enjoy!

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.

Zucchini Carrot Bread

1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup applesauce
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 small zucchini, finely diced or shredded
1/2 cup carrots, finely diced or shredded
1 1/2 cups oat flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
pinch of salt
(If the batter seems too dry add oat or rice milk a tablespoon at a time. Be careful not to add too much because it can quickly become too gooey.)

I sometime like to add some diced apple to this recipe if I have extra apples around.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and oil a loaf pan.
In a large bowl mix the maple syrup, applesauce, and oil.
Mix in the zucchini and carrots.
In another bowl combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
Slowly blend the flour mix into the zucchini carrot mix.
Pour into a loaf pan and bake 50 – 60 min. or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool completely then slice.