Tuesday, February 22, 2011

New no-stir creamy SunButter and pancakes

No-stir creamy SunButter
I received the most delicious gift in the mail for Valentine's Day. It was a jar of the new No-Stir Creamy SunButter, a free sample for me to try, along with heart-shaped cookie cutters.  They must have read my mind that I love SunButter.

This new SunButter is just as delicious as all the other varieties but has the advantage of not separating like the original flavors. They've added some additional ingredients to prevent separation. Hence, it doesn't require stirring before using.

I like this feature but I was already sold on SunButter. My family members, however, really appreciated this new SunButter because they don't like their butters to separate when they spread it on crackers and bread. In a taste comparison, they said they liked both the old and new SunButters.

I decided to go all out and try something I haven't made for awhile with the new SunButter. I made pancakes but not just any pancakes: Quinoa/Millet Sunbutter Pancakes. Now that's a mouthful.

 I used 1/2 cup each of whole grain quinoa and millet. I ground them to a coarse powder in my coffee gringer. Next, I put the freshly ground flours in my food processor with 1/2 tsp. gluten-free baking powder and dash of salt. To this, I added 2 T. of the new no-stir SunButter, 2 T. ground flax mixed with 2 T. water, and 1/4-1/3 cup unsweetened hempmilk. Pulse to mix to a thin batter.

Cook the pancakes in a well-heated skillet, sprayed and oiled. Cooking pancakes requires you to be very patient as I found out. I spoiled several before learning to wait for the bubbles in the dough to break.

Here's the final product, spread with more SunButter, of course. Mmmm good! Thanks, SunButter, for giving me an excuse to eat more of what I love.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

More Valentine's recipes for the ACD diet

Pomegranate-glazed whole chicken

Tossed salad with shaved parsnips and pomegranate

Dessert is the best part of Valentine's Day dinner but don't forget the entree. I decided on roast chicken with pomegranate glaze. Get dessert ideas at: http://catsinthekitchen.blogspot.com/2011/02/valentines-day-acd-style.html

Pomegranate molasses, mixed with olive oil in a 1:1 ratio, was used to baste and glaze the chicken. The molasses is made by simmering pomegranate juice until it's thick or purchasing it pre-made. Find it in large supermarkets near the vinegar or molasses or in Middle Eastern markets.

The roast chicken came out very moist and tasty but I didn't want to overdo the glaze because pomegranate molasses has about 7 grams of carbs per teaspoon. That's why I mixed it with olive oil. I could get the taste without as many carbs.

Feel free to use your favorite herb/spice mixture to rub the chicken with but I am limited to salt and pepper as I have delayed food allergies to just about any imaginable spice or herb.

Pomegranate-glazed roast chicken

  1. 1 whole chicken
  2. Salt and pepper
  3. 1/4 cup pomegranate molasses
  4. 1/4 cup olive oil
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Remove giblets and neck from chicken. Rinse the chicken with water. Rub all over with salt and pepper.
  3. Spray a roasting pan with pan spray. Place the chicken, breast side up, in the pan. Pour in about 1/2 cup of water to keep the bird moist.
  4. Baste the chicken with some of the pomegranate/olive oil mixture.
  5. Roast the chicken for about 30 minutes. Turn the chicken over, baste again and cook for another 30 minutes.
  6. Turn the chicken over one more time, baste with the remaining glaze and cook until a thermometer inserted into a thigh reaches 165 degrees, about 30 minutes more.
  7. Transfer the chicken to a clean cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes. Carve the chicken. Serve with additional pomegranate molasses if not concerned about carbs.
Tossed green salad with shaved parsnips

  1. Spring mix greens
  2. 1 parsnip, peeled
  3. Pomegranate seeds or substitute cranberries
  4. Dressing of choice. I made a simple oil, lemon dressing.
  1. Put greens on salad plates.
  2. Shave parsnips with a vegetable peeler. Distribute shavings between plates of greens.
  3. Sprinkle on a few pomegranate seeds for garnish.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Chocolate/sunbutter fondue, ACD friendly, for Valentine's

Chocolate/sunbutter fondue sauce

I've got to have chocolate on Valentine's Day. Carob is good too but I found out I am allergic after having my delayed food allergy testing. Carob is a legume and I am intolerant to all things legume.

The only problem with unsweetened chocolate is it does not seem to be compatible with stevia. The chocolate turns out more bitter than it already was when you add stevia. My solution is to add sunbutter which is naturally sweet. Or if carob is your cup of tea, it will be naturally sweet.

Here's my recipe for chocolate/sunbutter fondue sauce.

2 ounces 100 percent cacao chopped, 4+T unsweetened hempmilk, 2 T. brewed espresso, pinch of salt, 1/4 cup unsweetened sunbutter, stevia if desired: microwave for 1-2 minutes, stirring every 20 seconds and adding additional liquid if needed.

Place the sauce in a bowl, surrounded by chunks of fruit on toothpicks. Yummy!

Check out my flax hearts' recipe too here :http://catsinthekitchen.blogspot.com/2011/02/valentines-day-acd-style.html

Get entree and salad recipes here: http://catsinthekitchen.blogspot.com/2011/02/more-valentines-recipes-for-acd-diet.html

Friday, February 11, 2011

Valentine's Day ACD style

Flax hearts

I love Valentine's Day, mainly because it signals that the worst parts of winter are over. This winter has been especially rough on me because of injuries that just won't heal which has made it difficult to do my favorite winter outdoor activities, like snowshoeing, cross-country skiing.

But since I eliminated all those foods/spices/herbs that were interferring with my healing, I am doing much better. I am getting hopeful that I am on the right track by lowering my inflammation caused by those additional food allergens I discovered were sabotaging my efforts. I'm beginning to think that blood testing for delayed food allergies was a worthwhile investment.

I am celebrating by planning a delicious Valentine's Day dinner for my family.Of course, it's all ACD-friendly.  Here's what I have planned:
  1.  Pomegranate-glazed roast chicken
  2. Roasted vegetables
  3. Mixed green salad topped with shaved parsnips and pomegranate seeds
  4. Chocolate fondue and fruit chunks http://catsinthekitchen.blogspot.com/2011/02/chocolatesunbutter-fondue-acd-friendly.html
  5. Flax hearts glazed with chocolate
Get entree and salad recipe here: http://catsinthekitchen.blogspot.com/2011/02/more-valentines-recipes-for-acd-diet.html

Dessert is the best so that's where I will start. I saw a recipe for flax cakes somewhere and loved them. I decided to change them up a bit for Valentine's Day.

Flax hearts
(makes 6 large or 12 small)

  1. 1 1/2 cups ground flax
  2. 2 T. coconut oil
  3. 2-4 T. water
  4. 2 T. shredded, unsweetened coconut
  5. Liquid, alcohol-free stevia to taste
  6. Chocolate glaze for hearts (3 ounces cacao with no sugar, 1 T. coconut oil, stevia if desired; melt in microwave, stirring every 20 seconds)
  1.  Mix flax, shredded coconut, coconut oil, water and stevia in a bowl. Add additional water if needed to get the mixture to stick together.
  2. On a baking sheet, press mixture into a heart-shaped cookie cutter to mold flax hearts.
  3. Place molded flax hearts in the freezer to harden.
  4. In the meantime, prepare the chocolate sauce.
  5. When hardened, remove from freezer and dip into chocolate glaze to coat the tops. Return them to the baking sheet and the freezer to harden the topping.
This is definitely a heart-friendly Valentine's treat but you might want to make small ones if you are not used to flax.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Super Bowl tacos, ACD-friendly

Ground turkey tacos
Spices are banished from my diet after receiving the results of my food allergy blood test. I reacted to all of them. But it is still possible to make flavorful tacos that are ACD-friendly. I know what I will be eating for my Super Bowl party.

My food allelrgy testing also revealed that I am sensitive to oysters and clams, which I seldom eat. The source I discovered was calcium carbonate used as the calcium source in almond milk and the calcium supplements I was using.

My Tempt hempmilk is safe as the source is tricalcium phosphate which is made from calcium salts from rock. But I admit I will be trying to get more of my calcium from greens like kale, spinach, etc. I will mainly use the hempmilk in my tea or hot cocoa.

I also want to applaud Pyrex cookware for their recent safety campaign for their glass bakeware. If you are a blog follower of mine, you know I had a "run-in" with an exploding pyrex glass baking pan about 1 1/2 years ago. I ended up needing stitches on my right foot, getting blood poisoning and being sidelined with this injury for months.

Pyrex is trying to prevent such kitchen mishaps by offering free hot pads that list the four main do's and don'ts of cooking with glass. They are: 1) never place directly on burner or under broiler; 2) add liquid prior to cooking meat or vegetables; 3) preheat oven; 4) place hot glassware on a dry, cloth potholder.

Get a free potholder reminding you of these safety rules at: http://www.pyrexware.com/

Super Bowl Tacos, ACD-friendly

  • Large napa cabbage leaves
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Lime wedges for garnish
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 avocado
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Jicama cut into matchsticks
  • Green onions chopped
  • Shredded red cabbage
  • Sliced black olives

Make the guacamole first. Take the meat of one avocado, 1/2 the chopped red onion, lime juice, salt and pepper, and place in a food processor. Process but leave somewhat chunky. An add-in here for those not avoiding spices would be 1 tsp. cumin. Scoop the guacomole into a container and put in the fridge to chill.

Heat a heavy skillet on medium high heat. Add the other half of the chopped onion and cook until tender. Add the ground turkey and season with salt and pepper. Cook until almost done and squeeze on the juice of one lime. Continue cooking until browned.

While the turkey is cooking, chop up the other veggies (jicama, red cabbage, green onions, olives, lime wedges, etc) for toppings.

Serve on napa cabbage leaves with your choice of toppings. Note: Add spices or herbs of your choices if you are not in my spice/herb predicament.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Creamy tahini dressing for fruit

I have tried several elimination diets where certain foods that are potential food allergens are avoided for two-four weeks and then gradually reintroduced. Certain symptoms disappeared when I eliminated gluten, eggs, dairy and corn but the cause of chronic muscle pain and fatigue continued to be a mystery. The question was could certain foods/additives be causing inflammation that prevented me from healing.

My physical therapist suggested a blood test, one designed to measure IgG and IgE antibodies in my blood.  IgG responses were my concern as my symptoms have always been delayed ones. The results shed new light on the potential causes of my persistent symptoms.

Read more about my test results in "Food Allergy Testing" at http://catsinthekitchen.blogspot.com/p/food-allergy-testing.html

I was surprised to discover that I was reacting to all kinds of spices and herbs, garlic, fish oil found in Fish Oil Tablets and all kinds of legumes.

I've been eliminating all the suspected "villains" for most of this week. For the first 3-4 days, my whole body seemed to be going haywire, apparently a typical response, according to my health care provider.
The first improvement I've noticed is my stomach seems to be feeling better and that's where the healing begins, with the digestive system.

The most difficult part is the waiting to see if my symptoms continue to improve. My therapist believes they will, and I will finally heal from an injury that occured several years ago, the source of my chronic pain.

In the meantime, I am working on changing the way I cook (no more spices), the beverages I drink (no more herbal teas) and the supplements I take. I’m hoping the end result will be lessened muscle pain and fatigue.

I'm always on the lookout for ways to get flavorful food without spices, herbs or sugar. My newest favorite is Creamy Tahini Dressing for Fruit.

Ingredients for 4 servings:
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • liquid stevia to taste
  • 2+ tablespoons water
  • 4 cups sliced fruit such as papaya, strawberries, blueberries, kiwi
  • Optional: unsweetened coconut flakes (I can top mine with coconut if I want. I've always thought I had a sensitivity to coconut but my food allergy testing showed none.)
  • Combine tahini, applesauce, stevia and water in a food processor. Pulse until smooth. Drizzle 1-2 T. dressing on 1/2 or more fruit for an individual serving.
  • Top with coconut flakes, if desired.