Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Go Ahead Honey It's Gluten-Free - Dips and Dippers Recipe Round Up

Welcome to the December 2011 Go Ahead Honey It's Gluten-Free. This is a gluten-free blog carnival that has been going for several years! All recipes are gluten-free and you can see past recipes at Naomi Devlin's Straight Into Bed Cakefree and Dried. This months theme is Dips and Dippers, perfect for New Year's cocktail parties.

The first entree is 7-Layer Mediterranean Dip from Our Gluten-Free Reality. This mother and daughter gluten-free duo tempt us with refreshing and zesty flavors from the sunny Mediterranean:

 Luckily they decided to multi-dip with Grape Salsa, what a great way to make the holiday bright:

And this one, Christmas Salsa, which they described as "a totally different flavor, almost a chutney, but raw, powerful flavor":

Lisa, from Allergy-Free Vintage Cookery, brings her Spicy Red Pepper Dip to the party:

Andy, from The Rice of Life, offers Baked Vegan Taquitos that are also dairy and soy-free:

No party is complete without something crunchy. The fabulous Naomi of Straight Into Bed Cakefree and Dried has a how to for these crispy Cheese Crackers:

Stephanie, the Dairy Free Diva has this new take on the traditiional cheeseball: "Gluten-Free Goats Milk Cheese Ball with Bacon and Olives":

Here's a new way to put carrots at the cocktail table (rather than setting them next to the ranch dip),  my submission is Roasted Carrot Hummus:

I am also double dipping, this is Hawaiian Dip, which is a cinch to throw together:

Here's another take on hummus, Roasted Garlic Lentil Hummus Dip from Amber's The Tasty Alternative. It is also SCD friendly:

Have a wonderful New Year. Be sure to check out She Let Them Eat Cake in January. Maggie is hosting and her theme is Foods That Heal.

Hawaiian Dip (SCD, Nut-Free)

I really don't know if they eat this in Hawaii. I am just paying homage to all of the recipes that call anything with pineapple in it "Hawaiian". This is one of my submissions for "Go Ahead Honey It's Gluten-Free".

Hawaiian Dip

8 oz of Farmers Cheese, or Dry Curd Cottage Cheese, or Dripped Yogurt, or Cream Cheese (cream cheese is not SCD legal)
8 oz can Crushed Pineapple in juice
1/3 cup finely chopped Green Onions, include tender green portion

If you are using cream cheese (not SCD legal), warm it to room temperature. Drain can of pineapple but reserve the juice.

Combine cheese/yogurt, drained pineapple, and green onions. If you need to adjust the taste then add pineapple juice, one teaspoon at a time until flavor is just right. Chill at least 30 minutes before serving.

Dripped Yogurt "Cream Cheese" (SCD)

Yogurt that has been dripped for 24 hours will have the consistency of cream cheese and is great for dips. Dripping removes the liquid, called whey. Dripped yogurt is a cinch to make. If using homemade yogurt has been prepared in an SCD legal manner, it will contain almost no lactose.
You will need a colander or strainer to hold the amount of yogurt you want to drip:

Then you want to have a bowl that will hold the colander and have plenty of room for the whey to drip into. You will be amazed at how much whey will drip out.

Drape two pieces of cheese cloth, each long enough to hang over one inch on either side. Lay the pieces in a cross:

Then add the yogurt and place in the fridge for 24 hours to drip:

Then scrape the "cheese" into a bowl and it should keep in the fridge for up to two weeks. Two quarts of yogurt will make about two and a half cups yogurt cheese.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Books of Year Past (2011) and Year Ahead

Here's a few book I read in 2011, along with my cat Sylvie:
The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch: I was probably the last person to read this too. Once in awhile I get my hands on a mainstream book, but usually long after everyone else has read it.
Why Dirt Is Good by Mary Ruebush: I am trying to learn more about how the immune system works and she writes in an easy to read style.
Blinded by Science by Matthew Silverstone: Very fascinating account of research on magnetic fields and vibrations and how they affect our health. Written in an easy to understand style.
The Autism Book by Dr. Robert Sears: He sums up most of what is available if you have a child on the spectrum, from therapies to biomedical approaches. This is a great starting point for parents. I wish I had it in 2007.
When Your Doctor Is Wrong: Hepatitis B Vaccine & Autism by Judy Converse: This book is mostly autobiographical of her life with an autistic son, and many of their struggles.
Special-Needs Kids Eat Right by Judy Converse: She's not very pro-SCD, but it was still an interesting book. This would be very helpful if you have a child on the GFCF diet.
Small Blessings by Celestine Sibley: I lived for several years in Atlanta Georgia and Celestine Sibley was my favorite columnist at the Atlanta Journal Constitution. This book has short essays on matters of everyday life.
Will Write for Food by Dianne Jacob: A great book on food writing of all types: from blogging about food to cookbooks, etc.
We Band of Mothers: Autism, My Son and the Specific Carbohydrate Diet by Judith Chinitz: I really enjoyed this book. She writes about her experiences with her son and the SCD. Parts of the book are also written by Elaine Gottschall herself and Dr. Sidney Baker. I am hoping to do a review on this book soon.
Herbal Antibiotics by Stephen Harrod Buhner: I wanted to have a couple books like this on hand for reference. I have been able to avoid antibiotics on a couple of occasions.
The Antibiotic Alternative by Cindy L. A. Jones: Another good one.
Why We Get Fat by Gary Taubes: I love Taubes writing. He incorporates a lot of research and is very interesting at the same time.
Making a Good Brain Great by Daniel G. Amen: The author is a doctor that specializes in brain scans. It is fascinating to see the brain scans that go with different disorders and injuries, etc. It gives you a different look at the brain along with tips on sharpening your own brain. Easy to read.
You can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay: I read this to help with stress but it can help with so many issues we have in life. I loved it so much I am giving it for Christmas to many relatives.
The Source Field Investigations: The Hidden Science and Lost Civilizations behind the 2012 Prophecies by David Wilcock: A bit science fiction-ish and maybe even "out there" but it was like reading a really good episode of Stargate.
Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America by Robert Whitaker: I saved the best for last. This was one of those books that was hard to put down. With the explosion of mental illness and roughly forty percent of the population dealing with something mentally related, he asks if modern treatment with psychotropic medicines has resulted in a higher success rate for the patients that take them. The answer is surprising. The book also looks into the psychiatric and pharmaceutical partnership that has changed the way we treat mental illness.

I have a very ambitious reading list for 2012. I happen to be a very slow reader, so this may spill over into 2013...and maybe beyond.

Folks This Ain't Normal by Joel Salatin: Joel is pretty much a hero in the real food circles.
Hotel Bemelmans by Ludwig Bemelmans: About the seedy lives of restaurant and hotel workers. (I spent much of my twenties working in the restaurant industry.)
The Lives of a Cell by Lewis Thomas: Catching up since I didn't pay attention in biology class.
Writing About Your Life by Willian Zinsser: I am currently reading this to try to improve upon my own writing skills. The author writes about his own life and then tells you the mechanics behind why he wrote what he did.
Clean House, Clean Planet by Karen Logan: Determined to get more chemicals out of our home
The Web-Savvy Patient: An Insider's Guide to Navigating the Internet When Facing a Medical Crisis by Andrew Schorr: Having found many answers to our health issues thanks to the Internet, I thought this would be interesting.
The Dollar Meltdown by Charles Goyette: In light of our lovely economy.
When Money Dies by Adam Fergusson: Throwing in a little history. This one is about post World War I Germany when inflation ran out of control.
Celestine Sibley, A Granddaughter's Reminiscence by Celestine Sibley Fleming: This is a re-read. I lost my grandmother in 2010 and have been wanting to read this book again.
Feed Your Genes Right by Jack Challem: Interesting title
Dog On It by Spencer Quinn: In a effort to expand my horizons beyond non-fiction. I love animals and books with a sense of humor. I used to read Janet Evanovich before my son was born, I might try to squeeze in some of hers too.
Wheat Belly by William Davis: Got to see what all the hype is, although he will be preaching to the choir.
Unconditional Parenting by Alfie Kohn: Alfie Kohn writes on education and parenting. He's one of those authors that you may not always agree with but he is always thought provoking. Always picking apart and questioning the status quo.
The Secret Spiritual World of Children by Tobin Hart: Just the title alone has my attention.
The Man Who Couldn't Eat by Jon Reiner: I saw a review for this on My Cranky Gut.
Organizing from the Inside Out by Julie Morgenstern: Will 2012 be the year I am finally organized?
The Antioxidant Miracle by Lester Packer and Carol Coleman: Just wanting to learn more about antioxidants.
Food Politics by Marion Nestle: I have been wanting to read this for awhile.
An Alternative Approach to Allergies by Theron G. Randolph and Ralph W. Moss: This book was published in 1979, but I love books that were years ahead of their time. Here is an excerpt from the inside flap: "An Alternative Approach to Allergies" proposes a radically new approach to these medical problems and proves that many physical and mental illnesses are caused by our increasingly contaminated environment".

I'm sure I have forgotten a few, and this dosen't include the droves of cookbooks I hope to read. I am worse than a child in a toy store. Do you have any favorites for 2011? Anything on your wish list?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Roasted Carrot Hummus (SCD, GFCF, Nut-Free)

There are many different versions of garbanzo bean-less hummus. The first one I had ever tasted was a black bean hummus and it was delicious. This one uses carrots. Roasting the carrots brings out their sweetness which contrasts nicely with the cumin. This is also my submission for this month's "Go Ahead Honey It's Gluten-Free", hosted by yours truly. The theme is Dips and Dippers and the fabulous recipes are already coming in. Be sure to check back at the end of the month to see the recipe round-up.

Roasted Carrot Hummus

2 cups of petite baby cut carrots, you can use an equivalent of regular carrots
About 1 TBSP Olive Oil
Sea Salt
1/3 cup Sesame Tahini
3 TBSP Lemon Juice
1 Clove Garlic
1/4 teaspoon Ground Cumin

To roast carrots: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss carrots with olive oil and sea salt, and roast for 10 to 15 minutes, just until fork tender. Cool.

Combine all ingredients in a food processor until fairly smooth. If it is too thick you can add a few drops of olive oil or water.

Here are some more garbanzo bean-less hummus ideas:

Roasted Carrot Hummus from She Let Them Eat Cake

Black Bean Hummus from Life's Ambrosia (Note for SCDers: Do not use canned beans, use properly prepared black beans)

Herbed Lima Bean Hummus from

Beet Hummus from Elana's Pantry

Zucchini Hummus from Girl Cooks World

Red Kidney Bean Hummus from Adventures in Tralaland (Note for SCDers: do not use canned beans use properly prepared beans)

Red Lentil Hummus from Chow (Note for SCDers: Properly prepare lentils)

This post is linked to Monday Mania, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays,  Real Food Wednesdays, Real Food 101, and Fight Back Fridays.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

The Alchemy of Flavor

Tweaking Tastes and Creating Cravings with Morley Safer. Stephen Guyenet posted on this 60 Minutes report today. It goes behind the closed doors of the flavor creating industry. It also sheds some light on why the ingredient "natural flavor" gives you no idea of what you are putting into your body. Morley does a great job of presenting both sides respectfully. For those of you starting the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, GAPS, Paleo or any other diet forsaking processed foods, I hope this will help strengthen your motivation.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Go Ahead Honey...It's Gluten-Free - Theme for December

I'm thrilled be hosting this month's Go Ahead Honey...It's Gluten-Free. It is a gluten-free blog carnival started by the fabulous Naomi Devlin of Straight Into Bed Cakefree and Dried. I wanted to keep in the holiday spirit so the theme is Dips and Dippers. Do you have a savory or sweet spread, topper or dip that's the perfect gluten-free hors d'oeuvre? Or a crunchy cracker or crudites? Do share. Here's how to join the cocktail party:

-Post a gluten-free recipe for a dip and/or dipper and link it to this carnival. Your recipe will need to be gluten-free, but your blog does not have to be. If you do not have a blog you can email me your recipe with photo.

-Send me the link to your entry and a photo of it by December 27, 2011. My email address is  Label it "Go Ahead Honey" in the subject bar.

-Check back for the recipe round-up. I will try to get the recipes posted ASAP so you have time to use them for New Years Eve.

-Also, you can double dip...send more than one submission if you like.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

If You Give a Lab Mouse a Cookie

Here's my grown up geeky version of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff. I have bookmarked a few pieces of interesting research that involve mice. Some of these articles involve inducing a condition to test new drugs. For example, say you need to test a drug for epilepsy or colitis, instead of trying to locate thirty mice with the condition, you induce it. As someone who never paid attention in biology class, this was news to me...and what was used to induce was sometimes more interesting than what they induced for. Please note I'm not trying to make fun of the poor plight of lab mice, who give their lives for our benefit.

If You Give a Lab Mouse a Cookie

If you give a lab mouse a cookie and them give him a glass of water with chlorinated by-products to wash it down with, he develops autistic symptoms: Chlorination byproducts induce gender specific autistic-like behaviors in CD-1 mice, post on Questioning Answers,
And cancer: Assessment of the carcinogenic potential of chlorinated water: experimental studies of chlorine, chloramine, and trihalomethanes

If you give a lab mouse a cookie with MSG and partially hydrogenated vegetable shortening he develops fatty liver disease: Effect of dietary monosodium glutamate on trans fat-induced nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and becomes forgetful: Dietary trans-fat combined with monosodium glutamate induces dyslipidemia and impairs spatial memory

If you give a lab mouse a cookie with MSG he develops a smorgasbord of creepy health issues: Atorvastatin improves insulin sensitivity in mice with obesity induced by monosodium glutamate,
Long term effect of monosodium glutamate in liver of albino mice after neo-natal exposure,
Effects of bezafibrate in nonalcoholic steatohepatitis model mice with monosodium glutamate-induced metabolic syndrome, Chronic Administration of Monosodium Glutamate under Chronic Variable Stress Impaired Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis Function in Rats,

If you give a lab mouse a cookie with MSG or Aspartame he becomes forgetful again: Glutamate and aspartate impair memory retention and damage hypothalamic neurons in adult mice

If you give a lab mouse a low-protein cookie and candida yeast, he develops colon permeability and evasive candida: Preventive strategy for Candida gut translocation during ischemia-reperfusion injury supervening on protein-calorie malnutrition.

If you give a Syrian hamster (not a mouse, but everyone is welcome here) a cookie with antibiotics and candida yeast, his protective gut flora is wiped out and candida is found in his organs: Ecology of Candida albicans gut colonization: inhibition of Candida adhesion, colonization, and dissemination from the gastrointestinal tract by bacterial antagonism.

If you give a pregnant lab mouse a cookie with antibiotics her offspring have affected immune systems: See post at Gutness Gracious Me

If you give a lab rabbit a cookie with LPS he develops colitis. (actually he's injected with it, not eating it)  Lipopolysaccharide-induced colitis in rabbits. What is LPS? It is short for lipopolysaccharide, which is a toxin put off by gram-negative bacteria in your gut. Too much is a bad thing, which can also give the rabbit, an yourself, a host of bad issues: depression, anti-social behavior, liver problems, kidney problems, gi problems, etc. There is a wonderful website covering this called Microbial Influence.

If you give a lab mouse a cookie with high fructose corn syrup and trans-fat, the same amount to correlate with an American fast food diet, he develops metabolic syndrome: Severe NAFLD with hepatic necroinflammatory changes in mice fed trans fats and a high-fructose corn syrup equivalent

If you give a lab mouse a cookie with azo dyes (such as red 40), he develops DNA damage in his colon: DNA Damage Induced by Red Food Dyes Orally Administered to Pregnant and Male Mice

What's in your cookie?

This post is linked to Sunday School, Monday Mania, Fightback Friday, and Real Food 101.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Green Bean Casserole (SCD)

The infamous Green Bean Casserole, SCD style. For my topping I use Herbes De Provence (Morten and Bassett brand). It is a  mix of marjoram, rosemary, sage, savory, thyme, lavender, basil, parsley and sometimes fennel, chervil and garlic. If you can't find Herbes de Provence, than a combination of three or more of those herbs would work nicely. This recipe is for 4 to 5 people, you may need to double it.

Green Bean Casserole

2 cups Finely Diced Onions to make Crispy Onions
8 oz package Button Style Mushrooms, sliced
2 TBSP Oil or Butter
1 cup Yogurt or Yogurt Cream (SCD yogurt made from half and half)
Salt and Pepper to taste
10 oz package frozen cut Green Beans

1/2 cup Almond Flour
1 teaspoon Herbes de Provence
1/2 teaspoon Paprika
Salt to taste

Make a batch of Crispy Onions. You can do this a few days before and refrigerate until use.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Slice Mushrooms. Heat oil or butter in a frying pan and saute mushrooms to desired doneness. In a medium mixing bowl combine yogurt, onions, and mushrooms. Season to taste. Add green beans and mix. Pour into a small casserole dish. Combine topping ingredients in a small mixing bowl, sprinkle on casserole. Bake 30 to 40 minutes.

Crispy Onions (SCD, GFCF)

I had seen recipes for these in Indian cookbooks and meant to try them. Then, I ate some served on sliced flank steak at a Japanese restaurant in Las Vegas. They were diced so fine they looked like toasted coconut and tasted amazing. I could not wait to start using them at home. They are not just good on steak, they are also great with casseroles and vegetables. They will shrink up while cooking. Two cups of fresh diced onion will yield about 3/4 cup cooked. You can make these a few days ahead and refrigerate until use.

Crispy Onions

Small amount of Oil or Butter
Onions, diced fine

Here, I diced three small onions to get two cups worth. Oil a frying pan with just enough oil to coat the pan. Heat pan on medium high heat. Add onions in a semi single layer:

Adding more will cause some of them to cook before the others. Saute, stirring frequently until golden browned and done. If they need more oil while cooking, add a few drops at a time. If they seem to cook too fast, adjust the heat.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Hot Mulled Apple Cider (SCD, GFCF)

Need to warm your cockles and spice them up a bit? Hot mulled apple cider is just the thing. Heat a pot of this before your friends come over and your house will smell heavenly, with an aroma that says it's the holiday season. My ingredients are approximate, you may want to experiment by adding ginger, nutmeg, honey, orange juice, etc.

Hot Mulled Apple Cider

1 quart Apple Cider (SCD legal if your and SCD'er)
1 Cinnamon Stick, plus more for garnish
3 to 5 Whole Cloves
6 to 8 Whole Allspice
1 piece of Orange Rind, about 1" x 2"

Put all ingredients in a large pot. Bring to a boil and them simmer low for 15 minutes. Pour into mugs and garnish with a cinnamon stick. Serves 4.

This post is linked to Fightback Fridays and Go Ahead Honey It's Gluten-Free.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Easy SCD Chili (SCD, GFCF)

My dad has a saying, "Chili today, hot tamale". This is so true of Texas weather. One day it can be thirty degrees and the next day it can be eighty. This year we went from five months of August right into chili season. We have a hard time keeping the saltine crackers and cheddar cheese in stock at our little rural store. Everyone has a nice warm bowl of chili on their minds.

This recipe is from my son's grandmother. I have only adapted the seasoning to make it SCD legal, you can use my spice blend or a SCD legal chili powder. It's very easy. Cook's Illustrated suggests adding the spices to the hot oil before browning the meat for more depth.

Easy SCD Chili
2 TBSP. Cooking Oil
1 Onion, diced fine
1/4 to 1/3 cup SCD Legal Chili Powder
Cloves of Garlic, to taste
2 lbs. Lean Ground Meat
4 cups Tomato Juice
1 Whole Fresh Chili Pepper (optional)

Heat oil over medium heat in a dutch oven type pot. Add onions, chili powder, and minced garlic, cook until onions are tender. Add ground meat and brown. Add tomato juice and simmer for 20 minutes or more. (it will thicken the longer you simmer it, two hours makes a nice thick chili) If you are adding a chili pepper add it with the tomato juice and leave it whole (like you would a bay leaf). You can serve it with shredded cheddar cheese. I have a friend who serves her chili over steamed cauliflower and says it's delicious.

This post is linked to Fightback Fridays.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Is This My Child?

Doris Rapp has a book titled "Is This Your Child?". I had to ask myself that same question today. I was in the back of the house when my six year old came up and told me he was going to dust his bookcase. I thought "whatever" and handed him a damp rag. I came into the livingroom to find this:

It had not dawned on me in the last several years to dust the bookcase and it certainly would not have dawned on me when I was six. Who is channeling my child? Or was it just a good excuse to pull out all of the books and pile them on the floor (that would be the apple from the tree).

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Freezing Tomatoes (SCD, GFCF)

There's nothing like the taste of homegrown tomatoes. The cruel irony is that just when you want that flavor the most, in your nice warm bowl of tomato soup when the weather is cold, there are no good tomatoes to be found. Several years ago a neighbor had a bumper crop of tomatoes. He told me to blanch them and freeze them. I took the tomatoes and the advice. I was amazed at how well the frozen tomatoes had retained their wonderful flavor. I was determined to have a good batch put away this summer. Eddie started some tomato plants this spring but the 100 plus degree weather dampened my plan. Luckily the farmers market here has some decent batches. This year, instead of boiling the tomatoes and peeling them, I got an even easier idea from a post on Apron Strings for Roasted Tomato Sauce for the Freezer.  I love the flavor of roasted tomatoes. So I followed the instruction for roasting. I sliced an X on the bottom of each tomato and placed them X side up in a roasting pan. I roasted them at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes, then let them cool. Then the skins just slipped off. It was so easy... and the house smelled like roasted tomatoes. I didn't make the sauce. Kalyn's Kitchen also has a recipe that caught my eye for "Just Tomatoes" Sauce for the Freezer. I'll be trying that one next week.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Liebster Award

 My blog has received the Liebster Blog award. Lisa of  Allergy-Free Vintage Cookery tagged me for it."Liebster is a German word meaning dear, sweet, kind, nice, good, beloved, lovely, kindly, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing and welcome". The Liebster Award goes to blogs with less than 200 followers. Since I was tagged for this award, I now get to tag five other blogs. I'm going to cheat and pick six. I love so many blogs (if you haven't noticed my links list and my list of blogs I follow). So I am going to pick six that have are very unique.

A Cake Bakes in Brooklyn. This is not a gluten-free blog but a great source of inspiration. Susan has a fascinating hobby. She collects vintage cake and dessert recipes and blogs about the results. As she puts it: "These "lost" recipes, with their stains and annotations like "good, from mother's book," provide a window into the past, and one that I'm trying to pry open, one stick of butter at a time!"

Healthy Diets and Science. The media and mainstream medicine like to give us a single sided look at dietary research. David likes to give us a peek at the other side. If you are an armchair researcher like myself, this blog is an absolute gem.

Feed Me Like You Mean It. I think the name of this blog alone is worth an award. I wish I would have thought of it. Alex Lewin is serious about real food. Very Serious. His blog follows happenings in the real food movement.

Sonoma Bento This is another non-gf blog, but she has great ideas for incorporating fruits and veggies into the lunchbox. Full of lovely ideas.

My Cranky Gut. This is one of the newest blogs for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. Damion covers many topics: research, recipes, food journals and personal experiences.

Grain-Free Groupie A grain-free/gluten-free blog with lots of flavor.  It's nice to see more gluten-free blogs going a step further and ousting the refined sugar and refined gf grains as well. Many of us are learning there's more to being gluten-free than just being gluten-free, there's a lot of other junk that needs to go out with the gluten.

If you were tagged and would like to participate, here's what you do:

1. Mention who tagged you.

2. Reveal your top 5 picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.

3. Copy and paste the award on your blog.

4. Have faith that your followers will spread the love to others.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Dan Rather on Colony Collapse

Bee keepers around the world are losing an average of 34 percent of their bee population each year. In this facinating, thought provoking and somewhat creepy report, Dan Rather looks into the role of neonicotinoid pesticides, a systemic pesticide whose release coincides with the bee epidemic. This report can be viewed here at PAN North America

Monday, September 26, 2011

Hearty Vegetable Beef Soup (SCD, GFCF)

Soup season is coming! I love soup. This one is almost a stew, but not quite. I used "beef" in the title but almost any ground meat will do. This batch was made with deer meat. I prefer to use a leaner ground meat so there's little fat to drain off. Ingredients are approximate.

Hearty Vegetable Beef Soup

1 lb Lean Ground Meat such as Beef, Turkey, Deer, or Bison
Small amount of Olive Oil if needed
1 Onion, diced fine
1 Tomato, seeded and diced fine
3 cups Tomato Juice
2 cups Water
1 teas. Dried Basil
1 teas. Dried Oregano
Dash of Celery Seed (optional, early SCD'ers omit)
1 cup Carrots, diced fine
2 small Zucchini, diced fine
1 cup Frozen Cut Green Beans
Salt to taste

Brown meat in a large pot. Drain off excess fat if needed. Add onions and tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally until onions are tender. (If meat is very lean you may need a little olive oil). Add tomato juice, water, and herbs. Bring to a simmering boil. Add the other vegetables and simmer to desired tenderness. Season with salt to taste. Serves 6.

This post is linked to Fightback Friday.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Recipe Review - Lemon Ricotta Pancakes From Simply Gluten-Free (modified for SCD)

Carol Kicinski of Simply Gluten-Free has a flourless pancake recipe using ricotta cheese called "Gluten Free Ricotta Lemon Pancakes". Ricotta cheese is not legal on the SCD, so I substituted with dry curd cottage cheese, also called farmers cheese. They were very good. They reminded me of french toast without the toast. Thanks Carol!

 Here is a link for pancake syrups. I also have a recipe for Raspberry Syrup.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Butternut Snack Cake (SCD, GFCF)

I had some butternut squash leftover and was in the mood for a nice moist snack cake. I adapted this from Almond Butter Pumpkin Brownies at This Primal Life. I added and extra egg and some spices and voila, a nice little cake. I've made her pumpkin brownie recipe before as well and it was delicious.

Butternut Snack Cake

1 cup Almond Butter, room temp
3/4 cup Butternut Squash, baked and pureed
2 Eggs
1/3 cup Honey
1 teas. Baking Soda
1 teas. Cinnamon
1/8 teas. Allspice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and 8" x 8" cake pan.

In a large mixing bowl, mix almond butter until smooth. Blend in other ingredients one at a time. Pour into pan and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until cake tests done with a toothpick.

This post is linked to Pennywise Platter Thursdays and Allergy Friendly Lunchbox Love, Fightback Friday, and Sugar Free Sunday.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Autism, Carbs and Dysbiosis... Is Science Catching Up?

I must apologize. It's been a month with no recipe postings, and I'm still empty handed. I have several things I have been working on but they are just not there yet. However, I do have something very fascinating to post about. I like to follow Dr Paul Whiteley's blog, Questioning Answers. He is an autism researcher from the UK and posts frequently about diet and gi issues in autistics. Since Gordon is a gi ASD kid I like to keep up with the latest research. This weekend he posted on something huge in this area. It is a study by some top researchers in this field and it is finding the genes to metabolize carbs in some gi autistics are not working. They are also finding the wrong bacteria. They are speculating that these unused carbs are feeding this wrong bacteria. The article is very sciencey, a bit hard to follow, but you can still get the gist. It is titled "Impaired Carbohydrate Digestion and Transport and Mucosal Dysbiosis in the Intestines of Children with Autism and Gastrointestinal Disturbances". Link HERE. Dr. Whiteley gives his easier to understand take on it here and here.

The bottom line of the study is "These results indicate a relationship between human intestinal gene expression and bacterial community structure and may provide insights into the pathophysiology of gastrointestinal disturbances in children with autism."

For anyone who has read Elaine Gottschall's "Breaking the Vicious Cycle" the article will be deja vu, just harder to read. What amazes me is that Dr. Sydney Haas was onto this over 80 years ago. In his book Management of Celiac Disease, in 1951, he speculates that Celiac Disease is caused by a bacterial source that eats certain carbohydrates, remove those types of carbohydrates and you starve out the bacteria. This work was before the discovery of gluten and the current biopsy used to diagnose Celiac Disease. So it is really hard to know how many people back then were true Celiac's and who may have had Crohn's and other bowel issues. (Although it would be interesting to see a modern study on the SCD and Celiac's). What's more, Dr. Haas seems to discuss autistic behavior in this book. He isn't the only one to notice this odd behavior in gi patients either. He cites several other doctors who comment on it as well. "Czerny and Keller (1923-1928) were struck by the lack of attention to the psychological aspect of celiac disease on the part of many authors". Elaine puts excerpts from the book here.

I almost forgot to mention. Dr. Timothy Buie is one of the authors of this study. He is known for heading up the 2010 study in American Academy of Pediatrics "Evaluation, Diagnosis, and Treatment of Gastrointestinal Disorders in Individuals With ASDs: A Consensus Report". He also has an interesting interview with the Autism Advocate called "Gastrointestinal Illness in Autism" . You can view a very interesting speech he gave at the Maine CDC Here.

It will be interesting to see how the media portrays the study, if they pick up on it at all.

This post is linked to Fightback Friday.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Jack Black Autism Song Clip

OK, not food related, but very cute. This is a song from The Miracle Project, a group that works with special needs kids. This is a duet with Jack Black and a boy named Wyatt Isaacs, who has autism. I enjoyed it because I have had to cut so many tags out of my child's clothing. He's also quite fearless, except for fear of loud flushing public toilets.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Pecanbread...It's Not Just for Kids Anymore

Many of you know that Pecanbread is the SCD website for parents with children on the SCD. We started the SCD for my son in 2008, who has had GI issues since one week of age and regressive autism. Pecanbread has been a godsend for me, especially for kid friendly recipes and trouble shooting ideas. The website is designed for kid issues, however, there is so much valuable information that it is just as useful for grown ups too. If you are following the SCD and have never thought to poke around on it, you may be surprised. They also add new info from time to time. Here's a just a few of their interesting pages:

SCD and Detoxification
Stages (may be helpful for some)
Recipes in stages
Sample Menus
Food Preparation
Common Mistakes
Overcoming Difficulties
Improving Results
Yeast and SCD yeast protocol
How to enhance the SCD (although I don't believe between GAPS and SCD one is better in general than the other, it all depends on the individual chemistry, for us starting SCD was the better option)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Banana Snaps (SCD)

Here's a lunchbox treat that's not too sweet.

Banana Snaps (SCD)

1 cup Pecan Meal
4 cups Almond Flour
1/4 teas. Sea Salt
1/4 teas. Baking Soda
1 teas. Cinnamon
2/3 to 3/4 cup mashed Ripe Banana
1/4 cup melted Butter
1/2 cup Honey
1 Egg
1 teas. Vanilla Extract

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl combine dry ingredients. In a medium bowl mix wet ingredients together. Pour wet ingredients into dry and stir until combined. Chill in freezer or refrigerator until it can be handled easier (10 to 30 minutes). Roll dough into small balls, about 1/2 inch diameter, the size of a large marble steely, and place on cookie sheet. With wet hands press cookie dough balls flat. Bake 20 to 30 minutes, depending on how crunchy you like your cookies. Makes about 6 or 7 dozen.

These keep well, for about 10 days in an airtight container (we live in a dry climate, so humidity may affect shelf life).

This post is linked to Fightback Fridays.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Summer Blogging Break 2011

I haven't abandoned you. We've had a busy spell for awhile which included lots of "to do" things, including getting our broken oven fixed. Even though it's been over 100 degrees everyday, I was still lost without my oven. On the plus side, what better way to enjoy 100 plus temperatures than at Schlitterbaun. Every summer we try to visit good friends in San Antonio and spend a day at a water park.

Now this may seem like a typical photo of a family waiting in line (see below). For us it was a really big event. Notice there is no crying or screaming. Our child has never done lines well. Waiting in lines with him was agonizing, he would have a big meltdown. Here, while there was some complaining, he was no worse than his cousin who is the same age. Has he outgrown it or will we have to bring the cousin everywhere we go now?

Between Schitterbaun and San Antonio was a Snake Farm which the boys had to see. All the way there they sang "going to the snake farm":

We also ate at our favorite restaurant in San Antonio, Chama Gaucha. It's a Brazilian steakhouse and most of their cuisine is gluten-free. It's amazing.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

SCD Lazy Daisy Cake

In my last recipe post I mentioned it was too hot to use the oven. Then I see a recipe for Lazy Daisy Cake in a Taste of Home publication and I can't fire the oven up fast enough to attempt a SCD version. This has a luscious buttery gooiness to it, a great trait to find in a dessert!

SCD Lazy Daisy Cake (SCD)

2 Eggs
1/2 cup Honey
1 teas. Vanilla Extract
2 cups Almond Flour
1 teas. Baking Soda
1/4 teas. Sea Salt
1/2 cup Yogurt or Yogurt Cream (yogurt made from half and half), heated just to room temp
2 TBSP Butter, melted

1/3 cup plus 1 TBSP Honey
1/2 cup Butter, melted
1 cup Unsweetened Shredded Coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8" x 8" baking dish. (I use a pyrex dish)

For Cake: In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs, honey, and vanilla until combined well and just a bit frothy, about one minute. In a small mixing bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt. Then add to the egg mixture and beat just until combined. Beat in yogurt and melted butter. Pout into buttered baking dish and bake about 30-35 minutes, until cake tests done. Let cake cool for about 20 minutes.

For Topping: In a small saucepan melt butter and stir in honey until combined. Then stir in coconut. Spread over cake. Place under the broiler for about 3 to 4 minutes until browned and bubbly. Watch it closely, once it browns it doesn't take long to burn. Cool and enjoy! It seems like the next day it was even better.

This post is linked to Real Food Weekly, Fight Back Fridays, Sugar-Free Sunday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays, and Gluten-Free Wednesdays.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Dr. Ayers on Jimmy Moore's Low Carb Show

Jimmy Moore did an interview with one of my favorite non-foodie bloggers, Dr. Art Ayers' of Cooling Inflammation. His Anti-Inflammatory Diet recommendations are very similar to the SCD. When we first started the SCD diet I thought of it as temporary, until we were healed. After more research I now think it has it's advantages even in the absence of GI issues. Dr. Ayers blog has been full of information on the role of dietary inflammation on gut flora. In his interview with Jimmy Moore here, he discusses the role of starches and antibiotics on gut flora in allergies, autoimmunity, and constipation, and much more. The interview is 39 minutes into the podcast.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Chopped Brussels Sprouts (SCD, GFCF)

I love roasted Brussels sprouts, but despise the boiled ones. I didn't feel like firing up the oven to roast them, plus I was in a hurry, so I chopped and pan fried them. Very easy, quick and good. In fact so easy this really isn't a recipe at all, but I'll shamelessly post it anyways:

Chopped Brussels Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts
Butter, Oil or Fat for frying
Sea Salt

Cut the brown part of the stem part off the sprouts. Chop sprouts into quarters. In a frying pan over medium high heat, melt butter if you are using butter (for GFCF use another type of fat or oil). Add sprouts and cook until some are lightly browned and heated to your preference. Salt to taste.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Gut Flora, Nutrition, and Immunity

He's a fascinating article on the importance of gut flora: Human nutrition, the gut microbiome and the immune system. I saw a link to this gem on Paul Whiteley's blog Feed Me Research. It's been said they you can't fully discuss nutrition without the role of the gut flora. This article discusses some of the nuts and bolts of this, and for the most part it is easy to follow for us laypersons. The article makes several points worth mentioning:

"During the past 30 or so years, the North American diet has also shifted in terms of the relative contributions of different foods to total energy intake. Since 1970, two dietary 'epochs' can be distinguished based on the contribution of grains to overall calories (the mean increase in daily carbohydrate intake for men and women during this period was 62.4 g and 67.7 g, respectively). The consumption of other food items has also changed: Spearman's rank correlations between food availability and time, followed by adjustments of P values to reflect false discovery rates, show that the representation of 177 out of 214 items tracked by the USDA has increased or decreased significantly in US diets since 1970. For example, Americans now eat less beef and more chicken, and corn-derived sweeteners have increased at the expense of cane and beet sugars. Furthermore, methods of food modification and preparation have changed."

I find this interesting because chronic autoimmune and digestive diseases are on the rise. As a SCD'er I can't help but wonder if the drastic uptake of grains and sugar are a factor. A fun look at this change can be seen by Tom Naughton here and here.

"The intestinal microbiota can synthesize several vitamins involved in myriad aspects of microbial and host metabolism, including cobalamin (vitamin B12), pyridoxal phosphate (the active form of vitamin B6), which is involved in several enzymatic interconversions in amino-acid metabolism, pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), niacin (vitamin B3), biotin, tetrahydrofolate and vitamin K. In addition to vitamin B12, gut microbes produce a range of related molecules (corrinoids) with altered 'lower ligands', including analogues such as methyladenine and p-cresol. More than 80% of non-absorbed dietary vitamin B12 is converted to these alternative corrinoids. There is preliminary evidence to suggest that syntrophic relationships among members of the human microbiota, and the fitness of some taxa, may be based on the ability to generate, use or further transform various corrinoids."

I found this one interesting because those of us with gi issues also tend to be lacking in these vitamins. Vitamin B6 has also been found to help in autism, again pointing to a possible gut issue. As well as anemia in both populations:

"Likewise, iron is an essential micronutrient for bacteria. Given the low solubility of Fe3+, microbes have evolved the capacity to produce several high-affinity iron-binding siderophores. Microbes take up soluble Fe3+–siderophore complexes by several active transporters. Early studies in gnotobiotic animals showed a link between the gut microbiota and the development of iron deficiency. Germ-free but not conventionally raised rats become anaemic when fed a low-iron diet. The germ-free rats also show increased loss of iron in their faeces compared with their conventionally raised counterparts54. The iron balance that exists between host and microbiota is disturbed in a mouse model of Crohn's disease in which tumour-necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) expression is dysregulated: oral (but not parenteral) iron supplementation in these animals causes a shift in the gut microbial community composition, as defined by 16S ribosomal-RNA-based surveys, and exacerbates their ileitis."

This article also discusses the role of gut flora in obesity and diabetes. I was curious about which type of fat they used in this study reference: "Mice fed a high-fat diet have increased serum levels of lipopolysaccharide".
It turns out the researchers used corn and lard for the 72 percent fat diet for the mice. (I suspect a lot of corn and corn oil in the modern diet may not be a good thing).

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Deviled Eggs with Sweet Onions (SCD, Nut-Free)

We have an abundance of sweet onions in our CSA box. Thankfully I have a food dehydrator. I also slipped some diced onions into the deviled eggs with tasty results.

Deviled Eggs with Sweet Onions (SCD)

6 Large Eggs, hard boiled
2 TBSP Mayonnaise
2 TBSP Butter, melted
1/3 cup Sweet Onions, very finely diced
Salt and Pepper to taste
A sprinkle of paprika for garnish.

Slice eggs in half lengthwise and scoop yolk into a small bowl. Add mayonnaise and butter and mash well. If the mixture is too dry, mix in more mayo one teaspoon at a time to desired consistency. Add onions, salt and pepper. Drop yolk mixture into egg white shells. Sprinkle with paprika. Chill until serving.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Great Recipe - Berry Honey Bars from Heal-Balance-Live

When I saw these Berry Honey Bars (SCD friendly) on Karen's Heal-Balance-Live blog I couldn't wait to try them. She also has a version with chocolate chips (not SCD legal). These were yummy. The crust is a perfect replacement for a graham cracker crust. I did not have any sliced almonds on hand so I used pecans and used butter in place of the coconut oil and they were still delicious.  Thanks Karen!

SCD legal jam/jelly recipes:

Homemade Strawberry Jam from Z's Cup of Tea

SCD Homemade Fruit Jam from Heal-Balance-Live

Raspberry Jam  and many more from SCD Recipes

Monday, June 6, 2011

Study for Those With Crohn's Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, and IBD

This is a super easy study to participate in. Rush University is seeking volunteers for a study on IBD. They currently need controls, which in this case are folks with IBD who are NOT following a special diet. Here is the official release:

Do you have Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis or indeterminate
colitis? Would you like to have a free stool analysis to see what
bacteria, yeast and other microbes are in your gastrointestinal tract?

Rush University Medical Center’s Department of Gastroenterology is
conducting a study to determine if the Specific Carbohydrate Diet
changes the population of microbes in the gastrointestinal tract.
This is a popular dietary program amongst patients, but there are no
published studies on how the diet works. Your participation in this
study will contribute to scientific knowledge regarding how diet can
be used to manage the symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease.
Participation will entail completing a series of surveys and mailing
two stool samples and a urine sample. This study can be done
completely from home through the mail and does not require presence at
Rush University Medical Center.

We are currently looking for volunteers 8 years of age or older with a formal
diagnosis of Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis or indeterminate
colitis who are NOT on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet or a similar
diet. Subjects must be located in the United States. Volunteers who
qualify for the study will receive a DNA analysis of their stool.

The principal investigator for this study is
Ece Mutlu, MD
Rush University Medical Center Department of Gastroenterology
1725 W. Harrison St., Ste. 207
Chicago, IL 60612
If you are interested in participating or have questions, please contact
(312) 942-3466.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Roasted Cabbage - SCD

There was a head of cabbage in my CSA box. I've never been a cooked cabbage fan, but ever since I tried roasted Brussels sprouts I have wondered if the same technique could work for cabbage. Yes it does!  This came out sweet with a bit of crunch, not soggy and strong like my childhood memories of cabbage. Plus it's easy.

Roasted Cabbage

1 medium head Savoy Cabbage
3/4 cup Broth or Consomme
5 TBSP Butter

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Butter a 9" x 13" baking dish.

Slice cabbage into 1/2" shreds, discard stem and core. Place cabbage shreds in baking dish. Pour broth over the top. Dot with pats of butter. Roast for 15 minutes. Flip the cabbage. Roast another 15 minutes. Makes about 4 to 6 servings.

Here are some more SCD friendly cooked cabbage recipes:

Roasted Cabbage with Lemon from Kaylyn's Kitchen

Roasted Cabbage with Bacon from the Kitchn

Roasted Cabbage and Kale Chips from Yard Farm

Braised Red Cabbage with Apples from Jill's Test Kitchen

Cider Braised Red Cabbage and Apples from Healthy Living Market

Stuffed Cabbage from Comfy Belly

This recipe is linked to Pennywise Platter Thursday, Real Food Weekly, Fightback Friday, and Traditional Tuesdays.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

My Crockpot is My Stockpot - Homemade Beef Broth and Consomme (SCD, GFCF)

I've finally had success making beef broth in the crockpot. The secret, besides roasting bones with a little meat on them, is a low setting for 24 hours. Roasting them first removes fat and browns the bones for better flavor. I used soup bones that were about 3 to 4 inches in diameter, cut about an inch thick, and still had a few chunks of meat on them. This recipe made about 7-8 cups of broth. This broth had a good flavor and made a nice consomme too.

Stephanie of a Year of SlowCooking recommends adding cider vinegar about half way through to bring out the flavor. I forgot to do this, but will try next time.

Homemade Beef Broth

3 lbs (approx) Beef Soup Bones
10 cups (approx) Water
Veggies on hand such as onions, celery, and/or carrots (I used 6 Green Onions)
2 or 3 Bay Leaves
Salt and Pepper to Taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put bones in a single layer on a roasting pan, and roast about 40 minutes, until browned. Place browned bones in crock pot, adding water and other ingredients. Cook for 24 hours on low setting. Note: make sure your low setting is able to bring it to a simmering boil, if not use higher setting.

Cool cooked broth to room temperature, pour into a pitcher, and refridgerate overnight. When chilled, scoop off layer of fat, if you're avoiding fat then discard, if you're embracing fat reserve it in the fridge for future use. Use broth within three days of put in freezer safe containers and freeze.

To make consomme, put broth in a saucepan and bring it to a boil. Boil until it is reduced by half. This will have a nice "beefy" flavor that is good in recipes. You can also freeze consomme for future use.

This post is linked to Fresh Bite Fridays,a whole foods carnival, Fightback Friday, and Traditional Tuesdays.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Grain-Free Fig Bars - SCD

I've had bars on the brain. We have a family reunion coming up soon and bars are the perfect take along dessert. If you like Fig Newtons, you'll like these. However, they are soft like a "blondie"  rather than a cookie.

This is also my submission for this month's Go Ahead Honey It's Gluten-Free, hosted this month by Raj and Sonia of Flip Cookbook. The theme is Garden Tea Party. I thought these would be perfect, since they are a sweet nibble, perfect for tea. Right now in Texas it's ice tea season, but I think they will still go just fine.

Grain-Free Fig Bars

 7 or 8 ounces of Dries Figs, stems removed (I used Black Mission Figs)
1/4 cup Water
1/4 cup Honey

2 cups Almond Flour
1/2 teas. Sea Salt
1/2 teas. Baking Soda
1/3 (5 TBSP) Butter, melted
1/3 cup Honey
2 Eggs
1 teas. Vanilla Extract

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter an 8" x 8" baking pan.

To make fig filling, remove stems from figs and add to a food processor with water and honey. Process until smooth. The goal is to make it smooth and spreadable, but somewhat thick. If it is too thick thin with another teaspoon of water.

To make the batter, in a medium mixing bowl combine almond flour, sea salt and baking soda. In another bowl stir butter and honey until smooth. Mix in eggs and vanilla. Stir into flour mixture. Spread half of the batter into the prepared baking dish. Drop fig filling onto batter by tablespoons and carefully spread:

Now, carefully spread the remaining batter on top:

Bake for about 45 minutes. You will need to check the center of the top for doneness, as the bars will look fully cooked but this area may still be a bit gooey. Store in the refrigerator.

This post is also linked to Fight Back Fridays, Traditional Food Tuesday Blog Hop, Real Food Weekly, and Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Taking the Plunge - Joining a CSA

I did it. I finally joined a CSA. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. It works a bit differently than the usual way you buy your produce. In a CSA you buy a share for that growing season, you pay an up front price and then each week you pick up a box with your share of that weeks harvest. The CSA farmer tries to grow a great assortment so your box has a good variety. Since it was my first year, I opted for a bi-weekly box. I love the idea of a CSA. I think it is good for local economies, I like knowing that my farmer doesn't use a multitude of pesticides, and I like that my produce wasn't trucked across the country using lots of petroleum in the process. The challenge for me will be to use my box of produce and trying not to waste any if possible. An even bigger challenge, however, is that I grew up avoiding vegetables, so I haven't worked with many greens, root vegetables and squashes. I want to incorporate more greens into my diet, so finding recipes I like will be an adventure. I have been preparing for over a year now by purchasing some books to help such as Greens Glorious Greens! byJohnna Albi and Catherine Walthers and From Asparagus to Zucchini by the Madison Area CSA. There are also some great CSA recipe websites. If I do stumble upon any great dishes, I'll pass them on.

If you want to find a CSA in your area check out Local Harvest.

Links for storing and using your CSA produce:

Maritquita Farms - Great resource for vegetable info and recipes!

Live Earth Farm CSA Notes from Debbie's Kitchen A ton of recipes, they've been adding recipes since 2002.

Anchor Run - Lots of recipes

This post is linked to Grain-Free Tuesdays.