Friday, July 6, 2018

Nut free, Paleo,Whole 30 flax crackers

1 cup ground flax meal
4 TBL chia seeds
2 TBL apple cider vinegar
2 TBL +/- warm water

1 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

sesame seeds, kosher salt, sunflowers seeds for topping

Mix first 4 ingredients in a small bowl until a ball forms. Let sit 2 hours to overnight.

In a food processor, combine next three ingredients and pulse until seeds are ground. Add remaining ingredients and pulse, adding water slowly if needed to make cohesive.

Preheat oven to 350 and oil a baking sheet with olive oil.

Roll out dough on baking sheet, being sure to oil top as the dough is sticky. Top , then roll over toppings. Bake for 20 minutes, then turn off heat and crack oven door. Allow to cool, then cut into desired shapes.

If you're not doing a Whole 30, you can add about a TBL of honey and they will taste like granola bars!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Green Goddess dressing (dairy free)

Start with a basic blender aoli . Measure out one cup, and save the rest. Return the one cup to the blender.

Add 1 cup fresh parsley, 1/2 cup fresh basil,4 chopped spring onions, and blend. Add 3 TBL fruity vinegar (I used the blackberry vinegar I accidentally made when I left a water bottle with fruity water in a hot car for three days). Blend, and then slowly blend in a 1/2 cup olive oil.

Salt to taste if needed.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

One pan chicken with "stuffing rice"

I call it "stuffing rice" because it has the same flavour profile of my gram's stuffing.

1 whole fryer
1 cup white rice
2 cups water
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
1/2 an onion, finally chopped'
2 carrots, finely chopped

Seasonings: I used paprika, thyme, garlic and olive oil for the pictured dish.


Layer chopped veg, rice, and water in the bottom of a glass baking dish. If you like, skin your chicken, place it on top and then smear on your spices.
Bake 2 hours, stirring rice occasionally.

This dish is a 2 meal deal. The leftovers can be easily turned into soup by making the bones into 3-4 cups of stock, chopping the chicken, and tossing it all into a pan to warm through.

Miso ginger pork noodles (GF, DF, nut and corn free)


2-3 pounds boneless pork ribs
1 TBL sesame oil
1/4 cup tamari
1 TBL miso paste
2 TBL freshly grated ginger
2 tsp minced garlic
1 bunch green onion, sliced
about 2 cups thinly sliced bok choy

1 package rice noodles

Slice the pork into thin disks. In a large pot, brown pork with the sesame oil. When browned, turn down to low and add tamari, garlic, miso, and ginger. Let simmer for about two hours.

When pork is meltingly tender, soak noodles in hot water for 3-5 minutes. Add bok choy to pork, followed by the soaked noodles. Garnish with the green onions, and sriracha and sesame seeds if desired.

Monday, April 6, 2015

What do I want from my Whole 30?

I'm starting my first Whole 30 tomorrow. I've had periods of more or less strict paleo or careful eating over the years, but this will be my most stringent yet. If you asked me, I'd have said I eat a pretty healthy diet...until I started cleaning out my kitchen in prep for my Whole 30. 

What do I hope to happen over the next month?

-Lose at least 10 pounds

- at least some level of relief from headaches, joint pain, abdominal pain, and candida

- reduced craving for sugar

-better mobility

What habits do I want to make sure to NOT return to after the 30 days?

-packaged gluten free products



In addition, to meet my goals I'll need to start measuring my portions and the cooking fats I use, because it's all too easy when eating mostly whole foods to feel like you can eat all you want.
That obviously no longer works for me, as I weighed in at 162 today...only three pounds less than my highest adult, non pregnant weight. Since I can't weigh myself until the Whole 30 is over, I'' entirely rely on how my pants fir: and yes, it's hard not to quantify myself like that for 30 days.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Not everyone eats everything: get over it

It's happened again: I've seen enough of the "never ever go gluten free unless you have a definitive celiac diagnosis!" to want to speak up.
This is the one I saw today:
with this caption:

Unless you have been diagnosed with celiac disease, going gluten free will do *nothing* for your health.
Image via Skepchick.

In my experience, people who get upset over other people not eating things fall into three categories"

People like the woman I responded to in this post , who seem to feel they're special snowflakes and only they get to give up certain foods;
People who can't stand food trends;
And people who think anyone who does something so hippy dippy as an elimination diet is some anti science nut who rejects all research and doesn't vaccinate and take their kids to acupuncture for cancer, because people can never be balanced thinkers who take advantage of modern medicine while eating whole foods.

Given what I've seen of Skepchick , I'd say this falls into the last category.

I won't go too much into the fact that yes, people without a diagnosis of celiac disease can experience benefits of removing gluten from their diet. I'll just share this article from Scientific American . The reason I won't go into it that much really shouldn't matter.
Unless you live in the same home as a person who gives up gluten...or dairy...or pork products, it's not that likely to affect you. , People eliminate particular foods for any number of reasons, including health, religion politics, and plain old aversion. So what? It shouldn't matter why a person doesn't eat a particular type of food. Even if you have no allergies and no religious proscriptions, there's probably something you don't eat. My husband won't eat peas because of the casseroles his mom used to make. A friend's life mate is so repulsed by pickles he won't eat things that have been on the same plate as them. Should they "get over it"?
As far as trendy goes: are we going to start hating on people who eat chia seeds and Greek yogurt? Tapas? Sweet potato fries?

A note about dining out:

If you're the wait staff, it's not your job to discern if someone "really needs" the food accommodation they ask for. It's your job let them know if you can provide it, so they can decide. Nobody needs a note from their rabbi to ask for no bacon. No one needs a doctor's note to get a gluten free meal. Just because you saw someone order a burger last week, does not make this week's request for a vegetarian meal less valid. Be aware that if the person has a real cross contamination issue, or keeps really kosher or halal, they have probably done some research to see if they can eat there in the first place.

And if you're the guest: You did do that research, right? Pretty much every restaurant has a website, and most managers are happy to answer your questions ahead of time. They want your business, but even more than that, they don't want you to get sick and then complain. The most important thing is to make yourself their favourite customer, because you are asking for special consideration. We all know that even if you eat everything in the world happily, you shouldn't go out unless you're willing to be nice to your servers and leave at least an 18% tip. If you have ANY special considerations, you need to take that up a notch. You need to tip at least 20% , and you need to be not just pleasant, but SUPER SWEET! Make your charming personality, not your special food requests, what people remember.

Eat what you want, and let others do the same.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Gluten free: It's not that expensive, really

A friend recently posted this essay the gist of which is that people who eat gluten free without medical cause make life harder for those with Celiac's and other medical issues with gluten. While the author makes some good points about cross-contamination in restaurants, I disagreed with several points in her post (aside from the "poor me" tone); and especially her assertion that gluten free is expensive.

Ms Strauss's closing paragraph states: 

Also, this life is expensive! Literally, on average, 242% more expensive, according to researchers from the Dalhousie Medical School in Canada. Let me break this down for you: pretzels can run $5-$6 a bag, individual sized pizzas around $15-$20 at restaurants and even $11 for crappy tasting ones from the market, and cupcakes and muffins are in the $4 range. I just spent $12 on a whole-grain gluten-free loaf the other day and didn't think twice about it, because this is just my life. But it doesn't have to be yours.

I don't know where Ms Strauss lives, but that's way more than I would pay even full price for such items here. Let's look at one of the more popular brands, Udi's. At my local Fred Meyer, their items run between $4.99-$6.99, with loaves of bread on the low end. I usually only buy them when they hit the clearance rack, so I usually pay about 1/2  that. The week before this essay came out, I hit the jackpot at our Fred Meyer clearance rack and got two loaves of Essential Baking Company gluten free bread, a bag of Udi's hot dog buns, and a 4 pack of Udi's double chocolate muffins for just under $12. Since I'm the only GF eater in my family, all 4 packages are sitting in my freezer, roughly 3/4 full. 

I can only assume with the "242% more expensive statistic", we're looking at people who eat GF baked products as if they could still afford the 99 cent store brand items (which are probably full of crappy ingredients themselves) . No one, gluten eater or gluten avoider, NEEDS that much bread. If you can afford it, and either have a dream metabolism or don't give a damn about your blood sugar levels, go for it. But you don't HAVE to spend that kind of money. I'm not suggesting anyone who eats gluten free should go low-carb or full Paleo; in fact, some of your best best for cheaper gluten free living include the dirt cheap carbs in potatoes (I can usually get a 5 pound bag for $1) and brown rice (Which I can usually get for 69 cents a pound) . As a bonus, they both contain plenty of the fibre that is apparently elusive to us GF folks.

My take? Don't pretend to have a medical ailment you don't. Of course you wouldn't. And maybe , to make cross contamination less of an issue, make your restaurant orders "protein style" rather than gluten free. But yeah, keep buying those gluten free cookies and bagels. Why? Because your demand will help drive the prices down, so that when I do decide to treat myself to one of those things, I can afford to.