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2015-08-28 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

Pretty wildflowers

Pretty wildflowers

So. Was this week really long for anyone else? I don’t know where it all went, but I couldn’t remember what day it was most of the time, and I’m not sure what got done. Not laundry.

But. I do have some potatoes from Denise’s garden, and I was saving the purple ones for when I had time to do something amazing with them. I’m thinking that maybe gluten-free vegan gnocchi might be worth a try?

I also think I really need to try this chickpea omlette. Probably for dinner — when there is time to make a fancy breakfast, why would you make anything other than pancakes?

It’s heading towards fall and I (Denise) have some pumpkins in the garden and apples on the trees. So maybe this Ginger-Apple Pumpkin Soup recipe will come in handy. I’ll have to sub out the coconut milk though. 

Also, I’m dying to get a cider press. Thinking about this one because it’s sort of affordable, even if it doesn’t make much at a time. It’s on my someday wishlist. 

Hope you all have a great week!


2015-08-21 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

Graffitti on the World's Tallest Filing Cabinet

Graffitti on the “World’s Tallest Filing Cabinet,” Burlington, VT (Note: probably not actually the world’s tallest)

This “awsome face” is here for you, man. It’s here. On a Friday.

This week, I’m kind of obsessed with veggie burgers. I (Mary Kate) love veggie burgers, so long as you don’t expect them to be like meat burgers. Veggie burgers, for their own sake, and in their own right, are kind of awesome. I enjoyed V8Mile’s review of veggie burgers, but none of these brands are things I’ve seen here in New Hampshire. I’ll definitely look again if it’s cool enough next time I make it to Whole Foods. But The Kitchn posted a recipe today that I think could be easily enough adapted for allergy-friendliness: Sweet Potato Veggie burger. This one has seeds (pumpkin or sunflower) and an egg, but I might try messing with it to see what I can manage. Do you have a favorite veggie burger recipe or brand? If so, share it in the comments.

Many of you know that I (Denise) do a fair bit of fermenting so I can have things like homemade Sriracha, other hot sauces, sauerkraut, dill pickles and so on. I also do it because there are no safe probiotics for me, and there’s some vitamins that are made more bio-available by fermentation, since there really aren’t any safe options for multi-vitamin supplements for me.  If you’re in the Northeast, and you’re into fermenting, check out the Boston Ferments’ third annual Fermentation Festival which will be held on Sunday, October 4th from 10am-4pm at the Boston Public Market

And since it’s summer, and there’s lots of salads out there, here’s a Creamy Avocado Lime Salad Dressing that sounds pretty awesome. Bet it’d be great as a dipping sauce for fried stuff too. 

Hope you all have a great week!

2015-08-14 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

Scrap Robot Mac Steel

Scrap Robot Mac Steel

Ah, Vermont, so full of weird! Last weekend, I (Mary Kate) went to Vermont to experience all the weirdness it had to offer. While on the road, I had a great plate of salmon with an apple-fennel slaw. I think the original plate had an additional side, and the gluten-free option just removed it, but I felt comfortable at the restaurant, and the slaw was amazing. I found this recipe for a celery, apple, fennel slaw that sounds a bit similar — I’m sure the one I had didn’t have celery, but everything is better with celery. I will be trying something like this soon.

I also made the questionable decision to eat from a buffet where I think I may have encountered a tiniest bit of gluten. I wasn’t very sick, but I was messing up words the whole next day. Sometimes, I am not sure what’s just an “off” day, and what is a possible allergy/intolerance/maybe celiac reaction, but I’ve learned so much about allergy-related reactions from sites like Gluten Dude and other allergy sites where people share their own lived experiences with food allergies.  How do you learn about living with food allergies? Do you want to tell some researchers where you get your information? Mount Sinai’s Jaffe Food Allergy Institute is doing a survey about where food allergy patients get their information. Want to participate?

I’m (Denise) still struggling with breakfast ideas that aren’t my current standard rotation of oatmeal with brown sugar and water and nuked, or fresh fruit. This still has oatmeal, but it’s kinda different, Apple Pie Breakfast Pizza. There’s still a few things I’d have to sub out, and I’d skip the dairy free yogurt part as there’s no corn safe dairy free commercial yogurt, but it’d be relatively simple for me otherwise. 

Because I don’t have many options for easy desserts, I admit that sometimes I might eat half an 8 ounce jar of my home canned jam. But maybe this recipe for Vegan Mexican Sweet Chocolate Sweet Potato Pudding might push me to make a larger effort. I’ll have to sub out the coconut ingredients, but it sounds like it could be really good. 

Have a great weekend everyone. We are working on some upgrades to the blog, so be alert for something new, coming soon.

2015-08-07 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

Scenic View from the Kancamangus Highway in the White Mountains

Scenic View from the Kancamangus Highway in the White Mountains

Hey, hi, how are you? Has it been a really weird week for anyone else? Are you thrilled it’s Friday? I am thrilled it’s Friday. I like Friday. Because it’s Friday, it is time to bring you links of things that you can see around the internets — our goal is to help YOU waste time online today. Shall we get started?

I (Mary Kate) was inspired by this post from oh she glows about packing food for a weekend away. It didn’t sound too bad! I am making some plans like this for a trip, so I think I’ll do a post on this later.

I am not sure where I found the link to this tomato, chickpea, and coconut soup, but I really enjoyed it. It also let me use herbs I grew myself (thyme). All the way to August and still not dead.

So I (Denise) tried dehydrating raw zucchini into chips because there’s a lot of zucchini here. Um, let’s just say I won’t be doing that again. Eeww. So I went looking for more recipes, and when I get the 12 pounds of pork belly I just bought cured into bacon, I’ll be making this bacon wrapped zucchini dish.  And to further convert zucchini to comfort food, maybe I’ll try these Salt & Vinegar Zucchini Chips.

Also, later if I get any butternut squash in the garden, I want to try this Butternut Squash Gnocchi, which is gluten-free and vegan and doesn’t look that hard. 

Have a great weekend everyone!

2015-07-31 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

Arethusa Falls, White Mountains NH

Arethusa Falls, White Mountains NH

Welcome to Friday. Another week survived, right? And I (Mary Kate) did survive the hike to this waterfall. Barely. I should get out and hike or walk more.

This week, I’m armchair-traveling to Warsaw, Poland with V8Mile. I’m an excellent armchair traveler. All reviewed meals are vegan and gluten-free, too, so that’s a great bonus.

Thinking about traveling and easy food to travel with, I’ve needed an on-the-go meal three times this week, and this kind of grain-veggie-bean dish, with a tasty dressing, is my go-to. I like the extra touches in oh she glow’s quinoa and black beans. It keeps well in a lunch bag, and doesn’t need to be heated to eat.

I (Denise) will likely soon be over-run by zucchini from the garden, so this recipe for Garlic Marinated Zucchini from The Kitchn will probably prove useful very soon.

Also, I finally decided to order a medical alert bracelet, actually two, one for work, and a more casual and durable one for the weekend. In the same vein of trying to be prepared, I found this article on preparing for natural disasters  with food allergies. It’s geared toward kiddos but as adults we can extrapolate. 

Enjoy the weekend!

2015-07-24 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

Awesome Railroad Trestle in the White Mountains of New Hampshire

Awesome Railroad Trestle in the White Mountains of New Hampshire


I know we usually do recipe links and food allergy news, but this is sort of related, as you do need plates to eat things, if you’re polite. I love the Blue Willow china pattern, but these Calamityware versions of it with flying monkeys, robots (ROBOTS MARY KATE!!), volcanoes, pirates, UFO invasions, and sea monsters are so cool. If anyone wants to buy me presents, seriously, these are awesome. (I have seen these, but they are wicked spendy. I love the UFO one best. -MK)

I found this recipe for an aquafaba vegan butter. I can’t use it as is because of the coconut, but I might trying having another go at my margarine recipe using the aquafaba as an emulsifier. If you can have coconut, check out the recipe.

So, more in the aquafaba vein (I know we posted about this months ago, but aquafaba is Latin for “bean water” and is the stuff you drain out of a can of beans. It’s an amazing egg replacer and I can’t believe it took me so long to start playing with it. It makes excellent egg-free meringues, and if you want more, go join the Vegan Meringues group on FB. It IS a vegan group, so be respectful if you are not vegan, but a more enthusiastic group of bakers and experiments is hard to fidn online). Anyway, these almond-lemon cookies sound simple and amazing and perfect to make tonight. Well, maybe not exactly perfect, as I really want to try them with orange to pair with a chocolate mousse, also an aquafaba experiment.

I’ve been cleaning, and I’ve discovered a cache of grains I bought without a clear idea of what to do with them. One thing I might try is this cold sorghum salad with fruit and nuts (does contain walnuts). I might alter things a bit to use what I have, but kale and apples would be great in the fall. I was thinking maybe berries and spinach right now in the summer.

Have a great weekend everyone!

2015-07-17 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

Purple cayenne peppers, because what could be better than a purple chile?

Purple cayenne peppers, because what could be better than a purple chili?


In food allergy medical news, it looks like the peanut allergy patch, Viaskin®Peanut,  is entering Phase III in the clinical trial process during which it will be given to a larger group of people to confirm its effectiveness and collect information that will allow it to be used safely. Still not sure how I (Denise) feel about this without long term data. 

And in further food allergy news, here’s an interesting article on the effect that the molecular structure of some milk proteins (the ones which lacks iron and siderophores) has on activating Th2 lymphocytes in your immune system, which stimulates the production of IgE antibodies against the milk protein. Apparently the same thing is possible with birch pollen. 

Apparently this is the week for allergen news — a recent article discussed a study (that I could not find in a quick search) that showed that at least some doctors are starting to recognize that blood and skin prick tests do not actually capture all the allergic reactions that children have. As adults, we’re both well aware of this. It’s good to see that maybe doctors are starting to pay attention. (Though if anyone has more time to search and finds that study, post the link.)

To give you one bit on a lighter note, here’s a homemade cherry vanilla syrup that is apparently based on a drink at a restaurant in Maine, Denise’s home state. This is pretty allergen-friendly, and I LOVE cherry sodas, so I think I’m going to have to try it.

Go forth and learn something. Or not — it is almost the weekend, after all.


2015-07-10 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

A bush in Denise's back yard that needs identifying - Anyone know what it is?

A bush in Denise’s back yard that needs identifying – Anyone know what it is?

Why is the week after a holiday always a nightmare? In any case, I’m pretty glad it’s Friday. 

I (Denise) found an article about a study that’s in process for a patch to treat milk allergies by desensitizing the person by introducing increasing levels of allergen over time. I have mixed feelings about this. I’d love to have a cure to my food allergies, but continuing to eat my allergen for years after diagnosis (see my page) made me worse, and I suspect overwhelmed my immune system in conjunction with other factors to result in my current level of 15 food allergies (I haven’t updated my page to include my newest food allergy, eggplant, which resulted in anaphylaxis and a ride to the ER in an ambulance). Honestly, I’d probably need 20 to 30 years of long term data to show that there’s no ill effects (same reason I haven’t had Lasik eye surgery), and I just don’t have enough time left on the planet probably. Unless I become a cyborg when they invent that in 20 years. (I am first in line to go cyborg. — MK)

I’m starting to see purslane weeds in my garden, and supposedly it’s edible, and a really good source of Omega-3, and Vitamins E and C. Since most grocery store produce is either waxed, sprayed or gassed, and is usually corn contaminated…I keep thinking about eating it. Serious Eats had an article on foraging it. I’ll let you know if I bite the bullet and try it. Also, I’m thinking it would make really easy cheap ground cover near my patio. So what if it’s a weed? (There is not a recipe for it in my “Wild Plants to Eat: Workbook Number One,” but there is a lovely line drawing that I colored back in 6th grade when we did this workbook. You need to borrow this! — MK)

I am intrigued by this raw tart involving a seed-based crust (instead of nuts, which is typical), a coconut creme, and ripe peaches. I’m new to liking peaches (which I hated all the years I lived in Georgia), but they are in season now, and these tarts are so pretty.

I am heartened (yet not hopeful) that there is a push within the community of doctors to make sure that there is SOME training in diet and nutrition during medical school. Every little bit helps, right?

Because it’s Friday, and as Denise said, it’s been a week, here’s a bonus: some ridiculous photos of baby animals pushing grocery carts. Hey, it’s sort of food-related, right?

Have a great week everyone!

2015-07-3 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

Denise's dumb vacation project, building the bar and patio where the above ground pool and deck used to be

Denise’s dumb vacation project, building the bar and patio where the above ground pool and deck used to be

Well, I’m sure that one of my links will be no surprise to anyone, because it’s got chiles in it. This recipe for Green Harissa looks pretty awesome. 

Because I’m in the market for a smoker, well in the next couple of months’ anyway, I thought this article from Serious Eats on The Best Smokers Under $500, 2015 Edition was interesting. I’m probably going to go with the Weber Smokey Mountain 18.5-Inch given advice I’ve received from a local friend who is into competitions, and based on the killer Amazon reviews. I need to smoke bacon, and eventually ham, once I get my curing recipe sorted out. 

I know Denise posted about Anti-Grain Foods flours a few weeks ago, but I got the sample pack as a gift from my friend Laurie, which is awesome. We’re planning to try out this recipe for squash flour potstickers (with a few modifications) later today.

Last recipe for the day: I have never heard of moong dal chilla, but my friend Deb had pinned this, and it looks really good. I’m probably still eating potatoes for breakfast most days, but I’m definitely trying these bean-and-veg pancakes soon.

I realize, looking over this list, that we’ve not been very holiday themed, but you can always check out the All-American Chicken Ranch burgers or the  homemade hot dogs for weekend grilling. Don’t blow your fingers off, everyone.


2015-06-19 Fabulous Food Allergy Friday

Abe Lincoln, Chicago

Abe Lincoln, hanging out in his own park, with his protected bird species.

It just felt like a good time for President Lincoln, from Chicago.

So. What did you read this week?

Mary Kate got excited by the idea that Ben and Jerry’s might enter the vegan ice cream market next year. I say “might” because, despite the announcement, they don’t even know what the base will be, so, who knows? They are looking at coconut and almond, I gather. If you like coconut ice cream and want it now, see if you can find Steve’s in your area. They’ve recently made it to New Hampshire (or, rather, my friend Jodi told me about this and a hunt ensued), but the non-dairy flavors are hard to find. If dairy isn’t your issue, I hear the regular flavors are good (and many are gluten-free and/or egg-free).

These vegetable spring rolls are gorgeous. I think I need to make them soon. I might mix up the veggies, though — two different bell peppers seems like too much pepper; I’m not sure you’d taste anything else.

So I finally figured out that the blisters that show up on my feet after an exposure to corn actually has a name, Dyshidrosis. My reactions are not as extreme as those depicted, but at least I feel like I know what it is, and that I’m not the only one that gets it.  If you get weirdo little fluid filled blisters on your hands or feet after an allergy exposure, check out the link. 

So I just saw this recipe for 4 Ingredient AIP Flatbread Recipe, which was paleo and vegan, and I clicked reluctantly, because nine times out of ten, if it’s paleo, it has coconut in it and I’m allergic to coconut.  But the main ingredient was butternut squash flour.  Apparently there’s a company called Anti-Grain which sells butternut squash, sweet potato, and apple flour. I need to check this out. 

Have a great weekend everyone!

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