Easy recipes, fun reviews, and silly chatter from three
gluten-free, additive-free, and wholesome eating kids!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Photo Tutorial: How to make a No Sew weighted blanket for Sensory Processing Disorder

No, this is not edible. :-)

However, I know that a lot of our readers also have children with SPD, Aspergers, Autism etc and might find this helpful.

Brother Chef struggles a lot with sensory overload so we've been working with his therapy team to come up with ways to help him cope. (That's him in the photo with his new noise canceling headphones, another tool that he has really been enjoying.) One of the suggestions was "heavy work" or the use of heavy objects to calm him. Rice socks, deep pressure massage, weighted blankets, and a dentist's x-ray apron were all tools that were mentioned.

Brother Chef liked the idea of a huge, heavy blanket to wrap around his body so I looked into that option. There seemed to be two ways of attaining a weighted blanket:

1. Buy one
2. Sew one yourself

I wasn't fond of either because,
1. They cost hundreds of dollars. (Obviously, if this is something he needs to help him cope we will gladly purchase one, but first we wanted to know for sure he would actually enjoy it. )
2. I don't know how to sew... I know how to cook. :-)

So. I decided to make another option.

3. Make one without a needle and thread!

I was pleasantly surprised that it acutally worked! And it was less than $30 to make.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Quick Tip: Corn-Free Popcorn!

If you can't eat corn but can handle rice....you can still have a bowl of "popcorn" while you watch a movie!

It's simple. Take rice cakes, crumble them up, add melted butter and salt, and enjoy!

Or, if you prefer a more realistic "popcorn" snack you must check out Mini Pops!  This is a corn-free popped snack, it is a popped grain called sorghum. You can read our review of this amazing product and see our photos HERE! Yum!

Easy Shrimp & Scallops w/ Spaghetti Squash (Gluten-Free, Grain-Free)

This is one flavorful dish, so good! Daddy Chef said it tasted like it came from a fancy restaurant. So rich and garlicky!

We based ours on this RECIPE, but we made a few changes to make it easier to prepare, we're not ones to keep taking items out of pans. :-)

We cooked the garlic but then just added everything else to the pan at once, including more broth than they recommend. We also added some cilantro. And we let it simmer for longer, until the liquid reduced into a nice sauce.

Then we poured it over buttered & salted spaghetti squash "noodles". (You could use oil in place of butter, if needed.) We also added a few slices of lemon to the top, it's so much better if you squeeze lemon juice over the top before devouring.

For more Seasonal Sunday recipes go HERE!


And for dessert we made cookies! Snickerdoodles!
We took Elana's Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe but left out the chocolate chips and instead rolled them in cinnamon and coconut sugar.


Junior Chefs' Opinions!
Sister Chef: "Loved them both! Spicy and Sweet! 10 stars!"
Brother Chef: "The shrimp was hot but good! The cookies were awesome! 10 stars!"
Little Chef: "Yum and Yuck to both!"(He took a bite of the shrimp and said he liked it. But halfway through said he didn't like it anymore. Same with the cookies. lol)

Friday, February 25, 2011

Chocolate Covered Cherry Chiller! (Dairy-Free Smoothie)

Ok, no joking...this was the best smoothie we have EVER made!!

And it was soooooo simple!

Only 4 ingredients!!

We just tossed some unsweetened chocolate almond milk into the blender along with a little bit of coconut sap/sugar and blended it for a minute. Then we tossed in a bag of frozen unsweetened cherries and blended it up some more. Then we added in ice cubes on at a time until it was the consistency we wanted, we like thick!

It was insanely delicious!And the perfect after school snack!

10 stars from everyone! We might have to stock up on cherries! 

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Mini Frittata Buffet! (Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Dairy-Free, Corn-Free)

Today Little Chef was so excited because the delivery man brought him a box! He's loved boxes since he was just a few months old and when there is ever a knock on our door he runs to it screaming "Did someone order me a box?!"

Today his box was from CSN Stores, who sent us some beautiful ramekins to review! If you haven't been to their site yet swing on over because it is so much fun to browse all their stores, over 200 stores with one shopping cart! How can you go wrong with that many options?!

Yay Box! (Remember, all photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.)

When we opened the box up he screamed with joy "They sent me triangles, millions of them!!!"

Instead of packing peanuts or bubble packs there were indeed triangles...cardboard, 3D, triangles and he was in total awe.

He lost no time in dumping them all over the kitchen floor and wallowing in them. And then he yelled for daddy "Bury me in triangles daddy!"

We finally convinced him that there was more in the box and we were able to lift out the ramekins. They were perfect, just what we needed! Little Chef thought they were so cute and fun to stack. The brand is Ten Strawberry Street, which we thought was an adorable name.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Recipe Review: Easy Black & White Cake

We are huge fans of Elana's Pantry! Her foods are so scrumptious and her way of eating follows along well with ours so we can enjoy most all her recipes. We browse her recipes weekly and her cookbooks are on our wish-list.

Today Sister Chef said "I want cake....but I'm too tired to make one, they are so much work...and too many dishes afterward." Then, of course, Brother Chef and Little Chef started yelling that they wanted cake too! Luckily Momma Chef had just saw a recipe on Elana's Pantry that said it was quick and an easy clean-up! And no frosting required!

So, we decided to test out her Easy Black and White Cake!

We had to make a few modifications, just a couple though, but it turned the cake in a triple chocolate cake! 
* We used Dark Chocolate Chips instead of white
* We used Unsweetened Chocolate Almond Milk instead of coconut milk
* We added some Chocolate Flavored Stevia Drops

The cake was indeed really easy to make! Just a few ingredients, only took 5 minutes to mix up, and only one pot to clean! We will be making this often when we need a quick dessert!!

Now how did it taste you ask?

AMAZING! So soft and sweet and chocolaty! It was just perfect along with a glass of almond milk! Everyone in the house gave it 10 stars!! Except Sister Chef, she gave it 20! :-)

We love it when healthy foods make such huge smiles! 

While the cake might be easy clean up....we can't guarantee the same for little chefs!

Thanks Elana!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Easy Apple Crisp (Gluten-Free, Grain-Free)

We don't eat a lot of fruit, too high in fructose which our tummies do not like. When we do, we eat the ones that have low fructose levels.
(Fruits that are lowest in fructose levels and easiest to digest include berries such as strawberries, raspberries and blackberries, lemons, limes, pineapples, avocado, rhubarb, bananas and oranges. Fruits that have a high fructose content include prunes, pears, peaches, cherries, apples, plums, applesauce, apple and pear juices, apple cider, and grapes.)

However, at our last shopping trip we saw that apples and apple pie spice were on clearance...and we felt that was too good to pass up.

So we sliced the apples.

And sprinkled them heavily with spice and maple syrup.

And topped them with a mixture of coconut flour, coconut sugar, shredded coconut,  and grass-fed butter. Don't worry, it sounds like a lot of coconut products but it won't taste like coconut, we promise. In fact if you can't eat butter you can use coconut oil too!  
(Grass-fed butter is the only dairy that our tummies can handle,
as is has too little lactose to cause a problem.)
All ready for the oven!

We ate it while it was hot and steamy. The soft apples and crispy topping with a hint of sweetness was complete perfection. 

Perfect for a lazy Sunday afternoon!

10 stars from everyone! :-P

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Taco Salad w/ Spaghetti Squash "Cheese"! (Corn-Free, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free)

Whew, I don't think we left the kitchen once today!

It was worth it though!

Corn-Free, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free Taco Salad w/ Spaghetti Squash "Cheese"!

How we did it:

1. Layer of lettuce.
2. Layer of ground beef with Homemade Taco Seasoning.
3. Layer of Spaghetti Squash Cheese. (*recipe below)
4. Layer of Homemade Guacamole.
5. Layer of salsa
6. Layer of Cashew Sour Cream
7. Toss on some olives, tomatoes, green onions, or any other veggies your heart desires.
8. Enjoy!

*Spaghetti Squash "Cheese"

1. Cook a spaghetti squash.
2. After it's done, cut the strands into little bits if you want, like the size of shredded cheese.
3. Toss with oil and nutritional yeast.
4. Sprinkle on your taco salad.
Note: This taste nothing like cheese. But it looks kinda like cheese, if you take your glasses off. It does however add a great flavor to the salad, the flavors blend beautifully!

We set this up buffet style so each person could make their own, granted Little Chef only put guacamole and olives on his plate but everyone else loaded up and gave the meal many stars!

Ice Cream Sundaes w/ Edible Bowl! (Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, Egg-Free, Gluten-Free)

We have a four day weekend!

Which means more time to fool around in the kitchen!

And make awesomeness happen. 

Like Sundaes with Edible Bowls!!!!

How we did it:

1. Homemade Chocolate Bowls from Simply Gluten Free
    * Hers are waaaaay prettier than ours but we didn't mind! They tasted great but we did have a lot of problems after they had set as we could not get the balloons out without breaking them! We broke 3 of the 6 we made. Perhaps they were too thin, next time we will try to get more chocolate on the balloons.

2. Strawberry Ice Cream using coconut milk from The Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen
    * Yummy! We used coconut sugar in place of the honey.

3. Marshmallows from Naturally Knocked Up
    * These were a PAIN to make. And they had a really strong flavor. Next time we will try using coconut sugar instead. We put the fluff on our sundaes before pouring the leftovers in a pan to set up into marshmallows.

4. Natural sprinkles and a cherry on top! (frozen because we couldn't find fresh)

5. So gooey and sweet and chocolaty.....total bliss! :-P

We had so much fun making the bowls!

Pretty as a picture....oh wait - it is a picture!

And a happy moment:
When we handed Brother Chef his completed sundae he handed it back and said "Uh, I think you forgot how many allergies I have...I can't eat this, it looks too good to be safe for me." We assured him that he could in fact eat it and his huge smile lit up the entire room! <3

Best Ever Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Sugar-Free, Dairy-Free Pancakes!

Blueberries were on sale! Oh happy day!

So we made a double batch of our Freezer Pancakes and as soon as we poured the batter on the griddle we sprinkled them on top of each pancake. Beautiful!

We tried to keep from eating them because dinner was in an hour and these were to be popped in the freezer to save for hectic mornings. But, but... they were so tempting and smelled so delicious...

We just couldn't do it! We all had to test them out that very second and it was declared that they were the best ever pancakes known to man, way better even than any ones cooked with gluten or grains. We just dived into these headfirst and didn't come up for air until our tummies were begging for mercy. Divine...

We did manage to save a few for the freezer....so that's something. And we'll just have a late supper.... or more pancakes!


For more Real Food Wednesday go HERE!
Fore more Gluten-Free Wednesdays go HERE!
For more Slightly Indulgent Tuesday go HERE!
For more Real Food go HERE!

8 cage-free, farm fresh eggs
2 really ripe bananas- mashed
1 tablespoon coconut sugar syrup* or preferred sweetener (*Bring 1 1/2 cup coconut sugar and 1/2 cup water to a boil, simmer for 3 minutes, remove from heat, and store in fridge.)
1 teaspoon vanilla
10 drops vanilla stevia
1/4 cup coconut flour
1 teaspoon corn-free baking powere
Bowl of blueberries

Beat eggs well.
Beat in mashed bananas 
Beat in honey and vanilla.
Mix coconut flour and powder in another bowl and then beat into wet mixture.
Pour little amounts onto hot griddle, smaller pancakes are easier to flip.
Drop blueberries onto batter before you flip them.
Cook for 1-3 minutes, flip, and cook for just a few seconds to one minute as they cook fast once flipped.


Junior Chefs' Opinions!
Sister Chef: "Oh. My. Gaaaawd! I could eat these all day, 10 stars!"
Brother Chef: "Mphfffftt mfffphtte gooofhgyt!"(His mouth was so full he couldn't talk!)
Little Chef: "I like them! I want them all! And every day! 2 million stars!"

Friday, February 18, 2011

Some of the foods we've been making!

Monday: Sweet & Sour Pork 
w/ Cauliflower Rice
Based on THIS recipe, except we used Cauliflower Rice

Tuesday: Taco Salad 
with Cashew Sour "Cream" 
and Spaghetti Squash "Cheese"
(Recipe HERE)

Wednesday: Spicy Chicken Soup 
w/ Coconut Flour Biscuits 
Based on THIS recipe, biscuit recipe coming soon.
 Thursday: Steak Stir Fry 
w/ Cauliflower Rice
Based on THIS recipe

Friday: Gluten-Free Pizza
w/ Chocolate Almond Milk
Recipe coming soon!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Doughnut Attempt Number One

Brother Chef dreams of doughnuts. He talks about doughnuts. He sniffs the air and sighs when we walk past the bakery section in stores. His little heart was just crying out for chocolate and sprinkles.

So we borrowed grandma's ancient doughnut maker and gave it a go.(She has every kitchen gadget known to man since the 60s, seriously, last year we had a huge fondue party complete with lime green skewers!)

We decided to base our batter on Elana's Biscuit Recipe, but we added in more sweetener. The texture worked perfectly in the Donut Maker and we had fun dropping donuts all over the cookie sheet!

When they came out of the oven though, they had baked up like cookies not doughnuts. They tasted great, but were thin and crispy instead of fat and fluffy.

We didn't care though and slapped melted, dark chocolate and all natural sprinkles all over those babies!
And they were sooo good! Brother Chef was quite giddy.

It made a lot of them so we froze the leftovers and throw them into our lunches once in a while. They acutally tasted a lot better after two days as they softened up quite a bit.


'Tis a lesson you should heed,
Try, try again.
If at first you don't succeed,
Try, try again. - Thomas H. Palmer (1782 - 1861)


Junior Chefs' Opinions!
Sister Chef: "7 stars. They taste ok but if you tell me it's a donut and then give it to me I will be disappointed."
Brother Chef: "10 stars, they look like donuts yay! Can you put 6 of them in white box for me?"
Little Chef: "They not donuts!!! They get no stars! But I will eat one. Maybe two." 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

We Like Wee Bowls

We are so excited to announce that it's almost time for our first review, courtesy of CSN Stores!

CSN Stores has over 200 stores using one shopping cart so you could literally spend hours browsing and drooling. Momma Chef has worked with them in the past and raves over their customer services and ease of online ordering. We also have news that will please our UK friends... CSN Stores Cookware is available to you too! They offer all the same great products like Saucepans, Teapots, and Ramekins. We wish we had known about this when we were living in the UK as we had a really hard time finding cookware there.

For our US and Canada fans you can check out all 200 stores HERE.

We will be back next week with a fun review, RAMEKINS! We can't wait to test them out! We plan on making personalized frittatas in them, since each of us will have our own bowl we will be able to add what fillings we wish!

Stay tuned! :-P

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Gluten-Free Chicken Nuggets & Pancakes for the Freezer (grain-free, dairy-free, corn-free, gluten-free)

We all know that Little Chef is one picky eater. It seems that every night we hear at least one, if not many, "I don't like it!" from him.

There are two foods he will eat though, chicken nuggets and pancakes. We like to have those two items on-hand in the freezer for the days that we just can't get him to eat anything else. However, buying frozen, gluten-free items costs an arm and a leg and to be honest they are filled with a lot of ingredients we prefer to avoid. So, this weekend we decided to make a large batch of chicken nuggets and pancakes and see how well they did if we froze them.

We'll start with the pancakes because they were the easiest. We just mixed up a batch of our coconut flour pancakes (recipe below), let them cool, laid them single file on a cookie sheet and placed them in the freezer to harden a little bit, and then threw them in freezer baggies. The next morning we took them out and heated them up in the toaster oven, (micro-wave or toaster would work also) topped them with butter and pure maple syrup and.... he LOVED them! He begged for them all day long, in fact everyone in the family loved them so the bag didn't last long! They are perfect for hectic mornings.

Or lazy weekend mornings when Little Chef enjoys breakfast in bed...and uh yes, he really, really likes grass-fed butter and demands huge slices of it on each pancake. lol We love how happy he is with his food here... not a single "I DON'T LIKE IT"!

Easy Freezer (or anytime as they are even better fresh off the griddle) Pancakes

8 cage-free, farm fresh eggs
2 really ripe bananas- mashed
1 tablespoon coconut sugar syrup* or preferred sweetener (*Bring 1 1/2 cup coconut sugar and 1/2 cup water to a boil, simmer for 3 minutes, remove from heat, and store in fridge.)
1 teaspoon vanilla
10 drops vanilla stevia
1/4 cup coconut flour
1 teaspoon corn-free baking powered

Beat eggs well.
Beat in mashed bananas 
Beat in honey and vanilla.
Mix coconut flour and powder in another bowl and then beat into wet mixture.
Pour little amounts onto hot griddle, smaller pancakes are easier to flip.
Cook for 1-3 minutes, flip, and cook for just a few seconds to one minute as they cook fast once flipped.


10 stars from everyone! 


Ok, now the chicken nuggets were also a huge hit but we are not going to lie...they were a PAIN to make. It made a huge mess and took hours! However, he LOVED them so much that it was worth it. He ate them for lunch, dinner, snack time, and begged for more at bedtime. In fact we were a little disappointed that we spent all that time in the kitchen making them for the freezer but kept eating them until there were not many left to freeze!

We served them with the most amazing Raw Ranch Dressing from a recipe we found online, it is so delicious and easy to make! Everyone loved it but Sister Chef most of all, as soon as she tasted it she asked if she could make a salad to go with it. :-)

Homemade Chicken Nuggets

They are pretty simple to make, just really, really time consuming.

We cut up chicken breast into cubes.
Then we dipped them in eggs, then coated them in a mixture of almond flour, shredded coconut, and arrowroot powder. About 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup coconut, and 1/4 arrowroot.
Then we browned them on each side, for a few seconds, in coconut oil, on the stove in a skillet, placing them on paper towels after they were brown. (This doesn't cook them, just gives them a nice, crispy coating.)
Then we baked them, at 400 degrees, in the oven until cook all the way though, 20-30 minutes.
Then we ate them!
Everyone gave them 10 stars!

Next time we are going to try to skip the browning in oil part and see if they turn out with just the baking as it would save a lot of time but we are not sure if Little Chef would eat them as well because he loves the crispy part. We will let you know how it goes though once we attempt this.

To freeze, the same as the pancakes, place on cookies sheets until a little frozen and then transfer to freezer bags. Heat in the oven to serve.