Friday, October 28, 2011

Celebrating Halloween candida-style

Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays even though environmental and food allergies (and now candida) prevent me from enjoying some of the traditional festivities, such as hayrides, corn mazes and eating lots of goodies. The trick to having a good Halloween and other holidays, despite your issues, is to stick to foods you can eat and create new traditions.

Replace traditions that won’t work with new ones. The past few years I have been growing a huge pumpkin patch. When the pumpkins are ready, I invite friends with their kids over to pick a pumpkin or two for their Halloween jack-‘o-lanterns. The extra pumpkins are donated to the Salvation Army for families in need.


Some others Halloween activities I’ve tried are a scary movie night with “safe” snacks and goodies, going out to a favorite restaurant and movie, and hosting a gathering at my home (this can be with or without costumes). For a child with food allergies, plan a Halloween scavenger hunt instead of trick or treating.

Don’t wait until the last minute to make "safe" treats, or plan a Halloween menu if you or family members have food concerns. This year, I've already tried out a few "spooktacular" recipes.


Sunflower-seed encrusted apples
For a healthier take on candied apples, I made sunflower-seed encrusted apples. If nuts work for you, try almonds in place of the sunflower seeds.

Ingredients:
1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds
1 tsp. apple pie spice
1/4 cup coconut sugar
2 gala apples, halved and cored
1 T. coconut oil
1 cup water

Directions:
Grind the sunflower seeds in a coffee grinder. Combine the ground seeds with spices and sugar in a small dish. Wet the apples lightly and press into the spice mixture.

Heat the coconut oil in a heavy skillet. Brown the cut sides of the apples in the oil for 1-2 minutes. Turn the apples over, and add the water and extra spice mixture. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 45 minutes, or until the apples are tender and sauce is thick.

Place an apple half in a small dessert dish and top with extra sauce and vegan yogurt.




Vegan pumpkin squares


I also tried Vegan pumpkin squares.

Ingredients:
1 cup amaranth or quinoa flour
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup coconut kefir milk
1 T. chia seeds with 4 T. of water
1 1/2 tsp. gluten-free baking power
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 T. coconut oil, melted
1/2 cup coconut sugar

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8 X 8-inch baking pan. Mix all ingredients in food processor. Pour into the prepared pan and bake 20 minutes or until fork inserted comes out clean. Cool slightly and serve with dollop of vegan coconut yogurt.


Pretty spooky: a dog with a cone head

3 more days with hood

My pup, Misha, will be celebrating Halloween in an extra special way---cone-free after 15 long days. It's been a long period of confinement for not just Misha, but all of us. You can see from the pix above that Kona will appreciate the cone-less Misha more as well. We were thinking of dressing Misha up as a megaphone for Halloween but somehow I don't think he would appreciate it!


More great recipe ideas at: http://www.dietdessertndogs.com/2011/10/27/wellness-weekend-october-27-31-2011/

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